Arts and crafts and spring!

Spring! Hooray, it’s spring (even if a bit of chill lingers like a unwanted memory of winter, haunting and gray around the edges but fading with each day that passes). And with spring comes the need to wake up, stretch, and refresh the creative spirit with movement. Like the purple crocuses dotting my lawn, I find myself eager to rise from my winter hibernation, tilt my head skyward, and greedily drink up every cheery yellow ray of the sun.

There are so many colors coming back to life that I find I’m deeply inspired to play with them and make my own version. I’d already tried my hand at paper crafts, which I still love, but now I wanted to branch out—not to mention I’d accumulated a pile of felt squares I had no idea what to do with. So I turned to a couple projects I’d bookmarked months ago and challenged myself to make them. (The Internet is amazing! So many creative, generous people just bursting to share their vision with you.)

First we have this happy flag bunting. (You can find the tutorial here, if you want to make your own.) I’ve loved flag bunting for a while now, and the smaller flags were perfect for my house, vivid and eye-catching without dominating the walls. I don’t know much about sewing—yet—and my little stitches came out crooked. Plus I didn’t have any red thread handy, so I used white. But a red Sharpie came to my rescue, and now you’d never know. *grin* Every time I see the bunting, the colors and the letters remind me to, well, be happy!

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As some of you know, I love cupcakes, and my kitchen is decorated with a cupcake theme. So when I found this tutorial for felt cupcakes, I knew I’d have to adapt that to make a garland to hang in my kitchen. And I did! I’m really pleased with the results.


Cupcake garland


A few weeks ago, a dear friend of mine was going through a very difficult time, and I wanted to surprise her with a gift, one I’d made myself. So knowing her favorite color is yellow, and she really loves flowers, I experimented and eventually came up with this magnet. It made her day, which in turn made mine! (A goal we share is to continually work on ourselves, blooming one petal at a time.) Also, how pretty is copper glitter?


Bloom Flower Magnet
Finally, my niece just celebrated her seventh birthday, so I made this sparkly butterfly barrette (tutorial here). I attached it to a bobby pin. It looked so sweet in her hair!


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So yes, lots of crafting lately. It’s fun and intensely gratifying, and the more I do it, the more inspired I get! It’s been a wonderful outlet in many ways, because it’s mostly just for me, and there’s something so empowering about looking at something and thinking, I made that! What should I try next that I used to think I couldn’t do?

Creativity really is a form of magic. You imagine something, you bring it into being, and then it exists where nothing was before.

Of course, let’s not forget my favorite medium of all, words. I’m cooking up a feast of story ideas and getting ready to start my second novel . . . more on that soon.

For now, what are your favorite arts and crafts? Is there anything you’ve always wanted to try but never have? Then why not give it a try now? You might be surprised and delighted by what you come up with!

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