Cabin Fever

I was bored out of my mind today. We’re talking pacing the house, climbing the walls, ready to pull my hair out bored. BORED.

It was cold and a little rainy and I would have happily fired up the leaf blower just for something to do outside but alas, the weather had no intention of serving my whims.

I dabbled with a few unfinished projects, then decided to make a thank-you card. I get the same feeling when I try to start a card as I do when I have writer’s block – I have no idea where to start, I don’t know what I want to create, literally everyone who has ever done this is so much better than I am that I shouldn’t even bother.

As with writer’s block, sometimes to best way over it is through. So, I flipped through my favorite paper stack (I’m a long time paper junkie and hoarder) until something sparked a little inspiration. I ended up with this.

Cabin fever and creative block: Both (temporarily) banished!

It’s not perfect – the composition leaves something to be desired and the workmanship isn’t the best – but it looks like something I would make, and for an hour or so, I wasn’t bored.

The Quilling Experiment

My mom was a “hobby hopper.” One week she’d be diligently creating macrame plant hangers; the next, building a television from a mail-order kit. At one point she took up quilling – the centuries-old art of coiling paper into decorative forms. It was a craft that fascinated me, and I often tried to join in, twirling bits of paper around toothpicks then squishing them into various shapes.

A few weeks ago I bought a quilling kit from Amazon. It sat on the shelf for an unusually short time (less than three months!) before I decided to give it a go. My first coils were far from perfect, but I found it enjoyable and soothing, and the basic shapes came to me easily.

I made these. Go, me!

In no time, my ten year old joined me and promptly had it down to an art. Kids.

I love color, and with quilling I can play with any color I wish. The process of coiling is almost meditative, and pressing the bits into shape is just plain fun. It will be a while before I create anything beyond the basics, but I think the kit won’t just sit in its bin on the shelf.

If nothing else, the ten year old will use it.