Staying in the shadows . . .

. . . Not any more, these days I’m far more confident about sharing something I create. A few years ago, I began the first of several creative writing modules with the Open University, and I was petrified about sending my work off to a tutor for assessment. I was convinced she would hate it, that it was hopeless and nothing that I could write would ever be worth reading.

It wasn’t hopeless though, apparently it was rather good and so were my grades. Slowly, slowly I started to believe in myself, not everyone who read my work could be humouring me with compliments could they, why would they bother?

Now, my writing might not be the best, I’m not fortunate enough to be able to invest the time I’d like to improve it yet, but those days will come. Meanwhile I’ll send little bits of poetry, flash fiction and scraps of real life out into Lucid Gypsy’s world, and that gives me great pleasure.

I’ve always been a creative, as a very small girl I’d collect any odd pieces of fabric I could to make dolls clothes. I treasure the memory of my grandmother letting me sit at her treadle sewing machine, trying to reach with my little legs and sew a straight line. A little later she acquired a Singer hand machine and then at ten years old I made my first dress. I remember choosing the pattern and fabric, a white cotton covered with little blue flowers, and proudly wearing it to school that summer. By the time I went to high school, needlework classes  were really easy for me.

For a whole lot of reasons I stopped sewing a good twenty five years ago, but I did a little crochet and knitting at times. At evening classes I tried making Honiton lace – too painstaking and slow – pottery – too many people in the class to learn anything and even water colour painting! I am not enthusiastic enough about painting and drawing though, and even if I put in enough practice I doubt I would achieve the results I’d like.

So am I a perfectionist? No, far from it, attention to detail is a weak area in many things I do. I think it’s more a question of wanting to try to learn many, many things. Recently I’ve craved textiles, I yearn to buy yards of gorgeous material and yarn, to run my fingers over it, to see how it drapes and falls. I’ve restrained myself because when am I going to find time?

Myfanwy Hart is a lovely blogging friend that I’ve followed for a couple of years. She posts about her work, creating stunning art with fabric and yarns that she has dyed by hand. For 2014, she has begun a project to inspire others to create, even if it’s for fifteen minutes, and this weekend she is posting prompts to help us along the way. This post is the result of one of her prompts, number 14, which she concludes by telling us that everyone’s work is good enough.

            I wish I’d been able to believe that way before I did!


If you’re looking for some inspiration go and visit Myfanwy here, and you will also find a link to a Facebook group, where we post our creations – if we’re brave enough!

16 thoughts on “Staying in the shadows . . .

  1. Well, I signed in just in time to read this Gilly, lovely to learn a little more about you and to hear that you are a closet fabric stroker! There is no cure. Once you have felt the softness under your fingertips you are hooked for the rest of your life. Delighted you are enjoying the prompts, and thanks for the blog, 15 minutes is all you need to feel as though a creative urge has been fulfilled.

    Thanks again. 🙂

    1. Haha I’m not sure I’m in the closet Jacksgran, I have no shame – I’ll stop and strokeanywhere and sometimes it’s attached to a body 🙂 anyway I’m off shopping today and hope to find some crafty stuff to play with. Thanks for dropping in!

  2. I came to your blog via BE CREATIVE! I saw your quote to “come away with the raggle taggle gypsies o” and knew I HAD to follow you.
    (Shades of a favourite poem learned way back in Primary school mid last century)

  3. you are sooo creative Gilly, and have a real gift for writing, I am glad you share it with us on Lucid Gypsy … as for all the crafts, they will be waiting when there is time .. I learnt to sew on my grandmothers treadle machine, and still have it … now in the guest bedroom 🙂

  4. Gilly, you are a wonderful writer. I am always astounded by your Haiku. Your choice of words leaves me in awe. You are talented in so many ways, but I understand how you feel. Go with the flow, whatever hold your attention at the time. 🙂

  5. I used to feel the same way, but three years later, my followers have encouraged and inspired me so much. My confidence is now such it matters not how good I am as long as I like it and my followers do also. Keep it up… 😉

  6. You have talent in everything you do. At times, we are harder on ourselves than we should be.
    Keep in mind that art – or craft is subjective. It is all in the eye of the viewer. They aren’t always seeing what you want them to see. Art should be created on the you that you are so it is satisfying to you. The need for others to accept what you do will only stifle your creative juices. Too much thinking closes off the emotion that should come through in your artwork.
    You Go Girl … !!!!! CREATE !!!!!
    Issy xoxo

  7. Are we all prisoners for newer things and experience? Like you, I’m aweful at attention to details. And, I have such short attention span. Although I’m not such an artist I believe I can be very creative at times.

  8. You ARE gifted, Gilly. I’ve always admired those who can sew, maybe because I can’t see my way with a thread through a needle. (Incidentally, my mum taught needlework and home science). I’ve also admired greatly your photography. I find it amazing that women can photograph so well. Silly, isn’t it? But I grew up in an era where photography was for men. Things have evolved now I guess.

  9. Thank you for inspiring us and for being a generous blogger friend. I’m not perfectionist too but I try to be good in what I do. I do like to have a laid back lifestyle but for now, work and responsibilities makes it one of my future bucket list.

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