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the craft of simplicity

Simple Craft

Earlier this week I posted photos and a mini tutorial for the crocheted garland I made for our Christmas tree. I easily made 20 yards of it. More than once my dad commented, "that's a lot of work." And it wasn't the only time he has said that about something I was making. His tone could imply that he wanted to follow that comment with "and you're crazy to be doing it." But he doesn't say that, and I don't think he's even thinking that.

The thing is, many of the things I do are a lot of work (and I may very well be crazy for doing them). What I've been thinking on, however, is that the art...the craft of simplicity in my work makes me sane.

A complicated project that goes on and on isn't the kind of work I'm talking about, nor is a fast and easy project the simplicity I'm talking about. No, I like something that could be described as monotonous at times. With just enough elements to break it up and keep it interesting. I've found that I need this!

Crocheting garland, piecing hexagons or other shapes, embroidering little designs, hand quilting or stitching a binding...these things all call for a lot of work. But they don't require extensive brain power. They give me the opportunity to chat, watch a movie, listen to music, think on plans, or often, to pray.

Simple hand crafts offer peaceful moments, and I could always use more of those. I know I'm not alone.

And so, in the midst of a swirl of December activity, I cut some pentagons to make a winter wreath mug rug for myself. With a few sequin stars with which I've fallen in love. I shall sew it completely by hand, and enjoy every moment of it. There's not really time for a labor-intensive anything, but that almost seems to be the point. 

As I attempt to stitch some simplicity into my days, maybe you'd like to join me?

14 comments:

  1. lovely...project, words, sentiment...just lovely.

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  2. This resonates with me - I'm hand stitching at the moment too!

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  3. Wish I had more time for sewing , there are so many more things I want to make!

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  4. well said! I am a fan of slow, hand stitched, methodical projects too. have to go prep something to take on a trip this coming week

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  5. Well said, I have 5 kids and people think I'm crazy with all the crafting I do. But that is how I decompress from a long day of chasing and caring for so many.

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  6. So true! I love crocheting something that doesn't require me to count stitches, so I can just decompress while I'm doing it. I love EPP for the same reason, although I haven't done it in a little while! :)

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  7. Ah yes!! I think this will be a super-sweet mug rug- and the process will be therapeutic!! Where did you get the pentagrams for this??

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    1. I created it myself. Usually I use Adobe Illustrator, but I was away from my personal computer, and used Google Drive instead.

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    2. whoops- typo- pentaGONS!!! I don't want anything to do with the other thing I typed!!

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  8. Mollie - That's me! Actually, this is why I like to iron (yes, call me weird). It has a rhythm to it, just like the handwork that you describe. I can, as with handwork, ponder things, and even process things that need solutions, all the while producing something beautiful and useful. And yes . . . A well-ironed, starched shirt or blouse is a thing of beauty. I so much enjoy your blog and you!

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  9. I completely agree! Ironing is so satisfying in this way.

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  10. It is something that takes your mind away, but also allows you to do something at the same time. :D

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  11. I couldn't agree with you more, Mollie! I get that 'wow, that looks... time-consuming...' comment all the time from people. But it is totally worth the effort to create projects for myself... they save my sanity. I go crazy when I'm not working on something. To heck with the busy season, let's make stuff anyway! :)

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