Ever been in a creative rut? I’ve been there lately, and it is no fun at all. But being stuck is all a part of the cycle, so you may as well try to work through it.
Not sure if you’re there? Well, let me know if any of these scenarios sound like you. Projects that typically go quickly or are easy-breezy and ultra-fun seem to take for-ev-er. Starting a new project sounds about as appealing as deep cleaning the basement. Works in progress are going super wrong and you’re getting frustrated rethreading that bobbin for the tenth time. Or, quite simply, you just feel like you’re all out of ideas (and Netflix isn’t helping the case). It’s totally OK. We’ve all been there. Here are my tips to get the ball moving again.
1. Start fresh
I find that when I’m in a rut, it’s sometimes best to scrap (or just put aside) all those WIPs. Maybe you’ve found yourself stuck because you’ve been looking at the same pattern for too long or trying to perfect the same recipe. Start new. That might just give you the clean slate you need.
2. Go easy
I recently tried to start fresh with a new project and I found that pressuring myself to create an original embroidery design was sinking me further into a rut. Instead of forcing myself to sketch out a handful of new designs, I decided to go for something simpler: a counted cross stitch that I didn’t have to create myself. Trying a simpler and smaller version of your favorite craft sometimes gives you that satisfaction of completing a project and the confidence to move onto something new.
3. Try something totally different
Maybe your go-to craft isn’t doing it for you right now. That’s totally normal! Set aside whatever it is you do for a while and pick up a new project. Take a stroll through your favorite craft store and see what peaks your interest. This new project just might get your creative juices flowing again or become a new favorite hobby. Win-win!
4. Pick up something old
Similarly, you could pick up an old project. Whether it’s an old WIP that’s this close to done or a long-forgotten DIY, these old loves might inspire you to get working. I recently picked up an old dress pattern to get me moving again. It’s a simple one – which is perfect for getting me out of a slump – and just the right piece to push me into spring.
5. Take a break
Sometimes the solution is just time. Maybe what you love is putting you in a sticky spot because you overdid it. Don’t force it. Give yourself permission to take a break. Sometimes after a marathon sew or days of baking the solution is just catching up on a favorite show or a walk outside. No shame in that game. You’re still a maker and you’re still awesome!
I hope these tips are helpful to all you makers out there that might be struggling. I’m working my way out of a rut right now with a few patterns from Plastic Little Covers and regular Malcolm in the Middle marathons. It’s definitely helping!