Thursday, May 8, 2014

7 Habits of Highly Successful Crafters

Are you a crafter... a creator of beautiful objects... a designer... a dreamer... ?

Come on in and let me help you to be more successful.  First of all, I guess we should address what it means to be a successful crafter.  To me, it means creating beautiful cards, projects, decor, gifts, and scrapbook pages...  AND completing, using and enjoying them.  Half-finished and/or tossed aside projects do not promote a feeling of being very successful.  You think you'll get back to them, but do you really?  You truly do want to be successful at crafting.

So, how can you do it?  No one has the perfect answer for you, but I can try to share what I think works best for me.  I've come down a long road of trial and error to reach the place where I am now in my studio.  I've paved the way for you a little bit!  It's up to you to take what will work for you and use it to be at your best.
So, let's get started.
Be clean, neat, and organized.  
Oh dear!!!  I started out with a real challenge for (you) us all!  Of course it will get messy.  Just be sure to clean before and after each major creative time.  When you have a clean place in which to work and can find everything, you'll be happier ... AND... You'll greatly increase your creativity.
Constantly tweak your creative space.  
Keep it working for you.  Make small changes at a time.  Our interests and the products we use are constantly changing and this causes a constant need to tweak areas to KEEP them working for us.
Make your creative space a fun place. 
Keep it fresh and keep it fun.  Create a space in which it is fun to work.   No matter how large or small your space is, make it a fun place in which to be at your creative best.  Incorporate fun with function.
A happy work space is a more creative work space.  Keeping an embellishment in a container that you really love, can make it more fun to be in your work space.  Don't get carried away and add items that have no purpose other than to (Admit it!) just be in your way.  Enjoy those items somewhere else in your home.  I like to switch out little items from time to time throughout my entire home, including my studio.  It keeps it all feeling fresh, fun and new.
Manage your time.  
What could you make in the same amount of time that you spend looking at what someone else has created?  Check a few resources as your 'creative warm-up' and then get going and do your own thing! 
Be willing to try new designs and new techniques.  
Use the internet as a resource guide.  By not spending all morning looking at what everyone else has made, you now have time to focus on just a few good resources that are of the most interest and the most help for you.  It may be a new design, new sketch, or whatever catches your interest and inspires you.
Keep an inspiration board or display.
Put it where you'll readily see it, to jump start your creativity.  Have you made projects that you've kept because you really like them a lot?  Put them up where you can see them.  Use the same design with new papers, new stamps... you'll have a brand new take on it all.  Do you have a small space?  Keep up just 1 or 2 items at a time for inspiration. 

If it isn't fun, don't do it! 
Don't be afraid to step outside your comfort range (trying new techniques or designs), but stay true to what you love.  I tried origami ... once or twice ... and it does not like me.  Therefore, I do not like it much, either.  I'll leave that to someone else.  I love making cards, projects and scrapbook pages, but I'm not afraid to try new designs and/or techniques to make them.  Trying a new technique, style or design can really energize your creativity.

... and 3 more ideas, in case 7 weren't enough:
Keep a creative journal.  
In it, keep a record of color stories, designs and/or techniques that you really like to do.  You can use these ideas on future creations.  Keep lists of ideas that you want to try later.  Add sketches for projects, cards and/or layouts that you want to try.  Write it down, so you won't forget!  You can even add actual photos (from magazines or catalogs) that have inspiring color stories.  Jot down the Stampin' Up! colors that you'll use for this color story,  Look all around you for inspiration.  I often see color stories in catalogs or magazines that I really like.  I keep track of them in my journal, so I can try them later.  I actually keep at least 4 active journals going all the time.  Keeping things written down keeps me on track and keeps me from forgetting important plans and ideas. 
My 4 journals are:
--- a color story journal... for samples of color combinations that I like
--- a business journal... for ideas, dreams and plans for my classes and my business
--- an inspiration journal... for ideas I want to try... for cards, layouts and projects
--- journaling ideas... funny things the kids say and do, for scrapbooking later
Create.  Don't hoard.  
Do you collect supplies and products and hoard them or do you actually use them to create?  Be a creator, not a hoarder.  If you're not using them at all (for whatever reason), pass them along to someone else who may just enjoy AND actually use them.  You don't want to end up on that TV show, now... do you?
Go in the direction your creativity leads you.  
Believe it or not, I often dream designs for cards, projects and/or scrapbook layouts.  When I have these inspirations, I go with them.  If I don't, they kind of stay in my mind and block my creativity for going a different direction.  I need to just stop and go in the direction that my mind is leading my creativity and then I'm free to move on to something else.  Give it a try!  You'll be amazed at how much fun (and successful) this can be!

I hope you found some ideas that may get you thinking.  I could probably keep adding to the list, but keeping it shorter makes it seem more real, more specific and, hopefully, more likely that you can do it, enjoy it AND be successful, as well.
Do you have ideas you could share with us?  Leave me a comment.

- Thanks for stopping by my little corner of the blogging world. 
- Click on the tab at the top of the page to see my class schedules and registration policies or click on the left for sneak peeks. 
- Come back soon and come back often for more creative inspiration.

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