Nope, this is not about quilt blocks or anything fabricy. This post is about quilter's block, your mind going blank on quilting for weeks. Or months. Most of all, this is not a sad story. Nor is it a vibrant story about how easy it is to get rid of quilter's block. This post is just well, a post. Because I bet there are more quilters who have a time in life that quilting gives, well, not the thrill it gave you in the years before.
I've been there, the last half year. So much going on in my life, my head too busy, work issues, health issues in the family, and suddenly it hit me. No idea how to get inspiration. None. I loved to see quilts, loved looking at books. But picking up a needle? A new project? Finding the right fabric? Nothing. Even thread and thimbles were not appealing anymore. Just nothing would came to mind, nothing would inspire me. I didn't feel sad, it just wasn't there. Blank.
I started my standard path for inspiration. Looking at books. Feeling fabric. Trying something new, something challenging. Grabbed my favorite fabric and tried to make a block. Even tried machine quilting (pardon my French). After 15 minutes it was blah. And trying to persevere made it worse. I stopped blogging to not push myself, because it doesn't matter whether my mind goes blank, but when it occurs, I rather put the sound off ;-).
Doodling became also one of my things. I focused on some other new things in life that give me energy, like a course I am following and some new friends in life. And suddenly, somewhere in September I felt I could let go. Quilting is important to me, especially hand quilting. I developed a trust that quilting would come back, and kept an old Chinese proverb in mind:
Don't mind if you lose something.
If it's really yours, it will come back.
Otherwise it wasn't yours anyway.
It's back. Slowly and carefully I am thinking about new projects. Thinking about fabric. Drawing designs, even making templates. Feeling fabric between my fingers, choosing colors. But you know what? It's different. It's like there is a new path, something where I would never have been if I had keep on following my old path. Yes, hand quilting is still my thing. But one way or another, my colors are different, my designs are more bold, and I am okay with exploring. I do not feel the push anymore, just the sheer joy of playing.
So if quilter's block hits you, and chances are it does, it's okay. It's your brain telling you that it needs time to work something out. First try some inspiration emergency options like books, new fabric, going to a exhibition, all the regular things. If it doesn't work, let it go. And as soon as you can do that, and have trust in the process, your creativity will come back. In another shape, in another way, but it will come back.
Have fun quilting, and if not, then not. Okay too!