by Kristal Wick, Author, Designer, Instructor, SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS Ambassador
I don’t know about you all but there are moments I fall into a funk, feel like I’m battling the blues and simply cannot tap into my creativity for one reason or another. Maybe it’s too many hot summer days in a row, or running out of my frozen Girl Scout Thin Mint stash in the fridge, maybe it’s the tube of spilled seed beads in the carpet thanks to my puppy racing through my studio chasing a fly. I simply lose my ”mojo,” my inspiration, the jewelry-making juice that keeps my spark ignited. It happens to all of us at some point…
Some of my usual methods of blasting through this artistic funk are retail therapy (especially new beads or crystals), more chocolate, a puppy hug, cranking up the stereo channeling Donna Summer and singing along with my fave disco songs, or a good long walk in nature. But my absolute #1 sure-fire method is to hook up with one of my creative BFFs, dive into a new jewelry-making technique or craft, dump out all of our tools and goodies in the studio and play together! Whether it’s a few precious hours or a weekend marathon such as the one I recently had with my metal clay BFF Chris, it works every time! Through the laughs, camaraderie, and digging through each other’s stash, the funk melts away!
Friends are simply one of the main ingredients of this cake called life that absolutely cannot be ignore or omitted. The icing is the beautiful jewelry (or other artwork) you end up creating and the pleasure it gives you as your eyes gaze with proud wonder at your masterpieces; and whether you end up giving them as gifts, selling them, or wearing them yourself, the sense of complete satisfaction and creative flow is a wave you can ride until the next funk comes along.
I’d like to share a few Kristal Wick’s tips on beating the blues:
- Plan ahead! Schedule a ”play date” with a buddy or a bunch of jewelry pals and block out that time in PEN on the calendar so it cannot be erased! Feeding your creative soul on a regular basis keeps the whole world in balance. As my buddy’s hubby says, ”Keep mama happy and the whole family is happy, go ahead, make another necklace…”
- Bring all the vital supplies. Running out to the store for a missing component mid-technique is NOT advisable. Make sure to order and purchase everything you need before your ”play date.”
- Play Date Checklist:
- Jewelry tools, components, and your jewelry-making stash
- Munchies, libations, sustenance (grilling is good for this type of event, easy and not much prep work especially if your bud’s hubby likes to grill)
- If it’s an AM event, COFFEE! PM event, vino, iced tea, or sparkling juice
- Inspiring books, magazines and catalogs–fun to browse through each other’s books while you munch and sip. Guaranteed to get the creative pump primed!
- No cell phone chatting, texting, or Facebooking during this time. The whole point is to be 100% totally present with your peeps and dive into YOUR creative inner child. Carve out this time for YOU! Nothing kills a creative flow more than a call from your husband asking when you’ll be home to make dinner… (Nothing wrong with leftovers honey!)
- Home made rhubarb crisp can cure almost any type of blues
- Don’t forget your cleanest jammies. That may be all you wear (like us)!
- Wrap up your Play Date with scheduling another one. Get it on the books now, before another 3 months go by.
Even if you end up scrapping everything you created during that time (yes, it’s happened to me), you’ll have learned what NOT to do next time, had a fulfilling experience of remembering your buried creative spark, and had fun ”sparking” your peeps! The desired result is not really the piece of jewelry you end up with, it’s the feeling, the excitement of playing with a buddy (like we used to on the school yard play ground) who likes the same stuff we do (beading, knitting, crocheting, wire wrapping, claying, well you get the picture).
So dust off your tools, buy some new beads, call a friend and make a play date!