Lysy: What Sort of Crafter Are You?

In my post on bold sewing I asked what sort of crafter you were. Do you craft every week or only when you can set aside a whole day to it? Do you sew or knit in front of the TV or do you need a big table or natural light? Do you craft for yourself, for gifts, for your business, or for your home? Did you join Sew Make Believe in order to make time for your crafting? Or, to follow on from my earlier post: are you a careful crafter or a slapdash sewist?

I imagine that the answers are as many as our readers. Some of us turn out dozens of projects a month, while others work diligently at one thing for many weeks. Personally I’m in between: I make a lot of clothes, but I tend to do it in small stages in evenings and weekends. These are my ‘upstairs’ projects because that’s where my sewing machine lives. ‘Downstairs’ projects are those I do on the sofa in front of the TV, or while chatting to my boyfriend. These include knitting, patchwork or cross-stitch. While I spend more regular time on these projects (most evenings) they tend to take me a lot longer to finish, partly because they involve more intensive work, but also because I like to mix and match them according to my mood.

Thinking about this got me on to how crafting reflects your personality traits. Here are some of the things I came up with – let us know in the comments if you think of any more!

Starter or finisher? I’m sure we all have half-finished projects stashed somewhere, but some people get their main pleasure out of starting something. Coming up with ideas, planning the item, getting the bits and pieces together, and making that first cut/stitch/row. Others (like me) find the process of finishing the thing that makes a project. I hate to leave a project incomplete and I can get a bit carried away with something I’m enjoying (I’ve frequently been known to knit in meetings and on trains, and I *love* using my overlocker as it makes everything so tidy and neat).

Pattern follower/creative type? I think this is an interesting one as you can be a keen crafter without being naturally artistic – which is what patterns are for! Other people use patterns only for inspiration or just jump straight in with their own ideas. I’m quite envious of people in this group as I’m definitely a pattern-follower, although I like to add my own embellishments or finishes.

Tidy/messy crafter? Sometimes one of the pleasures of making something is creating a giant pile of mess on the floor. Which of us didn’t love getting messy with paints and clay when we were little (even those of us with no artistic skills!)? I’ve heard many of our members say that they really need to organise their stuff before they can start another project – but often that sounds like a chore. Others (Kate!) have beautifully tidy and organised craft areas and I bet these people are organised in their work/home lives too. Again. I’m a bit of both. As the picture of my ‘upstairs’ craft area show, my table is reasonably tidy and my stuff well organised. But what I haven’t shown you is the huge pile of bits of fabric on the floor which puts the nice neat boxes of remnants under the table to shame!

One last thought though: does your craft personality reflect your home/work one? I wonder whether many of us do our projects to contrast with our traits in other parts of our lives. That’s what I comfort myself with when I look at that huge pile on the floor anyway…

Would you agree? What does crafting add to your life?


One response to “Lysy: What Sort of Crafter Are You?

  1. Oh golly, that’s a tricky one. I get my main kick out of the start of a project – not physically getting stuck in, but coming up with the idea in the first place, sketching it our, imagining how it will look…

    This is beacuse I guess I’m a creative type – I actually dislike following patterns, and prefer to cut a dress from one existing in my wardrobe, and sew it together in my own way! This is probably why many of my projects have that “handmade” look about them, that lacks a polished finish…

    I am exactly the same as you when it comes to tidy/messy – I have a cupbaord at Dapper’s with my sewing machine, which is full of cut patterns, all neatly folded in bags with matching threads and zips, marked with sticky labels to identify which is which. These I tackle when I know I’ve got a whole day free – when Dapper is marking or lesson planning, for example. But then I also have a sewing box and a crochet basket, which hold the small, hand-worked items I’m working on at that moment. These are the things I pull out when I have five minutes to spare, or when I’m watching TV.

    I definitely craft far more efficiently for other people. Items made for me can languish, incomplete, for years, whilst gift-crafting forces me into action. I am going to be holding a stall at a fair in a few weeks’ time, and therefore suddenly found myself extraordinarily prolific yesterday, making stuff to sell. As with my workload, I work far more effectively to a deadline!

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