I’m a crafter. It’s something I have to do. I’m rubbish at sitting still, and because my hands are the only thing I can move, I fiddle.
One of my aims for the year was to take part in #The100DayProject and what better time for it to fall than in the midst of a global pandemic and lockdown. I’d only ever thought of lockdown when referring to prison, I guess I wasn’t far off.
So with nowhere to go and also being a shielder and totally banned from all essential outings I had the whole of my current life to devote to the thread. Cross stitch thread. Or floss as it’s sometimes referred to. I’ve been flossing.
I came up with the fantastically ambitious plan of cross stitching a square a day, totalling 100 individual squares that would create a kind of patchwork. A pandemic patchwork if you like.
Inspired by anything or nothing I would choose colours and create a pattern everyday dependent on my mood of surroundings. I’d considered motifs or relatable imagery, but decided to keep it abstract. Give an atmosphere rather than a story.
After much deliberation and counting I decided to go for 21×21 crosses for each square. 441 tiny squares within a square. Large enough to create something interesting, compact enough that it wasn’t an unrealistic challenge.
I soon discovered I’m much slower at sewing than I thought and the square a day plan dissolved into a whatever I can do plan. Who knows what would have happened if I actually had a life at the same time and general stuffs to do.
There were days when I couldn’t be bothered, wasn’t feeling it, or didn’t have any creative ideas. But I’m stubborn and no quitter. When I set myself something I stick to it and once I picked up the needle I was glad I did.
It passed time that I have way too much of even though I never feel there is enough. It gave focus.
Some designs came easy, I’d be eager to get to the next square that was already planned out in my head. On those days where creativity was sparse Pinterest finally earned it’s place and the years of pinning optimistic creations paid off as I used cross stitch templates and patterns for inspiration.
Following others progress with #The100DayProject (getting ideas for next year!), I was becoming part of a little community.
It was great having a group of friends and followers getting involved. I’ve had some encouraging comments and people say it kept them going and entertained too. (I was more inclined to think I was becoming a bore and Instagram spammer!) Cheering me on and giving a boost from the sidelines. Like a cheerleading squad for crafting. It’s the closest I’ll come to a marathon anyway!
A massive chunk of life has been digital this year. It’s great to be able to combine the very hands on and delicate nature of sewing with a whole world via social media.
The project has given me a constant through all this. A daily task that is not only therapeutic but addictive. I’d get an idea for the next square in my head and need to do it.
Read: If you’re still shielding, isolating, or not ready to be adventurous yet, here are 9 ways to help you get through it.
I do realise I haven’t completed 100 squares. There are 53. I will. What else is there for me to do right now?
I didn’t fail though. I stitched on every single one of those 100 days.
I’m continuing with the project, although a bit more sporadically. I’ve got lots of reading and ranting to catch up on. It’s a Friday night now and I’m sewing away. I act as if that’s a new thing. That was my life pre Covid too. I’ve always been a trend setter.
Head over to my Instagram to take a look at my daily progress photos, past and future.
Did you take part in #The100DayProject ?
Has another hobby helped keep you going through this pandemic?