Every winter I get the doldrums and itch to do, make, learn something. It's particularly urgent when I'm idle--I get a lot done during the weeks of Christmas and New Year's when I typically don't have to work. This year, I had unlimited free time for three months.
Sometimes I meet people who have zero hobbies or interests outside of their work, or television programs, or favorite adult beverages. I cannot fathom this.
In grade school, I was often along on my working mom's errands after work (for me, after school). Two places I loved to go to, and she eventually had to avoid because I would want all the things: the art supply store and the bookstore.
This still holds pretty true today.
So here it is, things I like to spend time doing:
- Knitting. I've made lots of things from baby blankets to chunky cowls to gloves and socks. I even applied for a paid-by-the-piece position with a hip knitwear company during funemployment.
- Painting. I slowly accumulated a collection of acrylic paint for one-off gigs I was doing with TOMS painting shoes at special events. The last thing I painted that wasn't a shoe was a cardboard cutout of a T. Rex for a party I threw in March. I decided this month, I want to get back into oil painting. I haven't used oils in 9 years.
- Sewing. I've never been the kind of girl that would see something, think, "I could make that," and actually do it. But I've made wearable dresses, bags, quilts, and once a cape for a Red Riding Hood costume. I lost an essential part of my machine that makes it functional a few years ago. I haven't replaced it.
- Photography. I fought my way into the photography program at my high school--the requirements were three previous years of training, an understanding of drawing, painting, light, and color. I still have all the cameras I've shot with since I was 18. I graduated to a DSLR from a point-and-shoot when I was interviewed in a local print magazine about my fashion blog. I bought a leather bag for my camera, that cost more than most of my handbags. I rented a lens that was worth more than I made in a month for my Iceland trip (it didn't break or freeze; I was relieved). Next level hobbyist, but nowhere near pro.
- Calligraphy and handlettering. The newest and gladly, the least expensive of all my creative endeavors. I've always had relatively neat handwriting and have journaled, pen to paper, for as long as I can remember. So while part of my brain wants to leverage this craft I'm learning into a cash cow (wedding invites, heyyooo!), I'm privately (now public!) excited about prettier penmanship. Since I've always got at least one notebook on me, I can practice anywhere.
Well what does all this ladder up to? I don't know quite yet, but so far I've gotten to use a lot of my unrelated skills and interests to woo the best people into my life. Let's make/do/see/eat/buy all the things.