Quick Quick Slow

KnittingAnd, relax… This is my perfect picture of knitting. Laid out on the sofa, sleeping dog to one side. There’s only one thing that could improve this picture – bar staff! Below is my knitting at the weekend, in a Yorkshire pub. Oh look, another dog. There’s a theme emerging here.


When my energy levels are high (as they feel now), I imagine myself rushing home to crouch over the sewing machine. But sometimes I find myself rushing home to lie on the sofa and knit. Go figure.

Creativity may not always be about fast. Sometimes it’s about slow. And sometimes it’s about slow, with a cocktail. Do you find that your creative urges ebb and flow in this way?


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25 Responses to Quick Quick Slow

  1. sullivan1970 says:

    I’m more of a seasonal crafter. In the fall/winter I spend a lot of time knitting. In the spring/summer I spend much more time sewing. Right now in South Carolina it starting to get warm so I have my crafting mojo focused on flowy cotton lawn dresses and blouses!

  2. lazylinchen says:

    Oh, so soothing! Yes, I definitely feel an ebb and flow. I used to think it’s related to my hormone levels, but now I think it’s more to do with other things in my life, like how stressed I feel during the day, or if my partner is around. I sew a lot more when he isn’t there, so I don’t feel bad for “neglecting” him. When he’s here I knit a lot more, since it doesn’t require too much attention.
    Also, when I’m stressed I don’t feel like creating and just let everything sit around for a while.

  3. Rachel says:

    Absolutely. After a satisfying slow sew, I often then feel the need to make some fast, instant gratification projects.

  4. I definitely find there are times I get myself in a huge crafty frenzy and will get out the sewing machine or manically knit. Other times it’s all about chilling out and crafting at a pace suitable to my mood.

    Speaking of which – I’ve got a new knitting project to crack on with!


  5. When I was sewing in my 20s my sewing machine sounded like a speed race car. I actually kind of liked it. I though I seemed so professional – and fast! Now that I’m in my (gulp!) 40s I take it slow. My stitching quality is tons better than it used to be and it looks like I haven’t been enjoying my mojitos too much 🙂

    I keep saying this – I need to learn to knit! Your projects always look so lovely and inspiring. I don’t even know where to start. Maybe a scarf or a potholder 🙂

    • onedabbles says:

      Grab some knitting needles and some pretty, multi-coloured wool. It will make a garter stitch scarf look sensational and is very easy. Karen is skilled knitter but you can dabble in pretty wool and really enjoy the effects. (Thanks too for a great, indulgent 30 mins spent looking at your vintage patterns.)

  6. Eileen says:

    I definitely have all different ebbs and flows with my projects. As the first poster commented, I’m a seasonal knitter. I just don’t seem to get the urge in the warm weather (though it’s so portable I think I’ll bring some on my upcoming trip to Borneo! 14 hours on the plane from San Francisco, yikes!).

    I also find the same thing as the poster who commented that they sew more when their partner is away. When my husband is out of town I take it as license to binge sew as much as I want and at whatever hour I please!!

    Finally, I need to balance my “fun” sewing and my “chore” sewing. Chore sewing can be anything from boring mending jobs, to bits that friends have commissioned or I’m making as gifts – basically anything I perceive as something I have to do. If I spend to much time on the chore sewing, I start to lose my enthusiasm for sewing in general. It seems creativity begets creativity and the more “fun” sewing I do, the more I want to do!

  7. Adrienne says:

    Paradoxically, it’s when I have the least time to sew that I have the most energy to sew, because the more I do, the more I can do… As some say, “if you want something done, ask someone busy”! But, of course, running on adrenaline does have its limit. I do experience this ebb and flow for sure. I like what Eileen says: “creativity begets creativity”.

  8. rachael says:

    I find that when I cant decide weather to sew or knit or just sit with a glass Of wine I end up sorting through supplies! Making neat piles of ribbons, threads or balls of yarn! Tipping out jars of buttons to separate them into colours, just to put them all back into the some jar because I have run out of space to put them! Sitting still has definitely become a task! Ha! X

  9. Fadanista says:

    I sew when my husband is off elsewhere (usually cooking or painting the house!) and I knit on the way to and from work (whilst he drives) and in front of television. Works well, gets lots of both done!

  10. stgilbert says:

    I definitely have creative ebb and flow. I’m getting over a staph infection in my nose and sinuses and knitting was all I wanted to do whilst I was getting better. My poor navy dot Emery dress has been cut out for two weeks and I haven’t sewn a single stitch!

  11. karen says:

    Yes I ebb and flow. When I have h a d enough coffee, I can make 4 easy dresses in a weekend. Then I feel like reading. Then sewing again. And so it goes. Karen

  12. onedabbles says:

    Definitely ebb and flow – I’m not that disciplined! If I need to chill out and be calm, I knit something really easy (massive garter stitch blanket on the go at the moment). If I can focus or need to work at something and lose myself in it, then I try and sew or practise a tricky knitting stitch. I’m new to sewing, so need to concentrate! There is something about the rhythm of knitting needles or sound of the sewing machine – soothing or stimulating, depending on my mood. I also think if you’re not in ‘that’ mood, then don’t do it… the times I make myself get on with a project, I usually make a mistake.

  13. Jacq says:

    I definitely ebb and flow – I find cross-stitch is my fallback craft, when I’m too mentally or physically tired to do anything else. I love the soothing rhythm of crochet but tend to make blankets so it’s more appealing in the autumn/winter. And the type of sewing I do depends on energy levels (I won’t tackle a dress when I’m tired but a bag or cushion is easy and makes me feel like I’ve accomplished something). I totally relate to the comment above about sorting supplies when I’m not fit for anything else, surrounding myself with fabrics and notions is inspiring and sorting them restores a sense of order. I think creating is my therapy! 🙂

  14. Fooniks says:

    I just recently found my way back to knitting and crocheting and I’ve discovered that it helps really well with stress and negative feelings. I’m one of those people who don’t talk about stuff and keep everything inside. And what I’ve noticed is that everything just melts away when there’s a piece of yarn and something to do.

    But sewing is what gets my blood running. I think that for me it’s knitting and crocheting for the blues days and sewing for the sunny days. But sometimes both for both 🙂

  15. Melanie says:

    Knit, knit, sip. I like how you work!: on the couch, bar staff at hand. Soon I shall be a pro knitter as well – well, maybe not, but I can manage the drinks part. I don’t ebb and flow in my projects, I rage/spew and then somnabulate (not a word).

  16. Emily - Belgian Seams says:

    It is definitely important to slow down! I’m not so good at that though…sometimes I’m too eager to finish something and then I make mistakes, but recently I’ve been trying to just listen to what I want to do and not what the self-imposed pressure I put on myself tells me to do!

    • Same here! I think I can only speed-sew with projects where I’m very very familiar with the pattern. Otherwise, everything takes time so I’m really trying to not put too much pressure on myself to make the dozens of things I’d love to whizz through!

  17. I sometimes just NEED to slow down. After a week of hard work and concentrated sewing in the evenings and on the weekends, I sometimes just need to sit and watch TV. And if there’s any motivation left, I get out some small knitting project. Knitting for me is just all about the process, not the result, so it’s less stressful than sewing 🙂

  18. Sam says:

    I find that I’m drawn to knitting especially when I feel a bit low, and want to be occupied without having to concentrate too much. I think there’s a lot to be said for keeping yourself occupied!

  19. Clare says:

    I want to know where the pub in Yorkshire is that you can knit in! Do they allow crochet? Coz that’s my latest bug that’s keeping me away from my sewing!

  20. Kate says:

    I love having different types of projects for different situations, moods, and energy levels. I used to knit a lot, but the last year or so, my relaxed and cozy projects have been felt appliques. Love the colors you are knitting with!

  21. Amy says:

    I find my creativity definitely ebbs and flows, I find if I try force myself to make something I become frustrated and don’t enjoy it. I definitely have to be in the “mood” which is most definitely not after teaching all day!

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