DIY Home + Garden

Published on May 20th, 2010 | by Kelly Rand


Get a Dose of Sunshine While you Craft

Outdoor patio

When I knit, I can become very obsessive/compulsive with my projects. I will just sit and knit and knit and knit, often into the dark wee hours of the morning. I can become all scrunched up, working away, not noticing the dwindling light until I’m squinting to see my project.

I also have bad posture when I sew. I don’t have proper lighting or a good sewing table to place my well loved machine. I’m often bending over at weird angles to see the stitches or thread the needle. The point that I’m trying to make here is I’m sure many of you are in the same awkward crafting boat. You craft in strange corners and dark basements, making due with small spaces and not enough light. Always not enough light.

With World Wide Knit in Public Day a month away, I’m making a plea to all us cramped up crafters to pick up your craft and go outside!

When crafting or doing anything that requires attention to detail and color, natural light is best. Your kitchen table light or desk lamp isn’t gonna cut it when trying to match fabric swatches or threads.

Most projects have some component, if not the whole project, that you can take into the outside. Seam ripping, color matching, embroidery, knitting, button reattachment and even paper making can be taken into the sunshine.

Taking your craft into the outdoors can also do wonders on your mood. You get a bit of sunshine and a change of scenery can help unblock your creativity. Ideas start to flow and that tricky part of the pattern you’ve been trying to work out suddenly becomes clear.

So go on, pick up your needles and feel the sun on your face and breath in the fresh air.

[Image credit: dailyinvention under a a Creative Commons license]

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About the Author

Kelly covers visual arts in and around Washington, DC for DCist and is editor of Crafting a Green World. Kelly has also been published by Bust Magazine and you can find her byline at Indie Fixx and Etsy’s Storque and has taught in Etsy’s virtual lab on the topic of green crafting. Kelly helps organize Crafty Bastards: Arts and Crafts Fair, one of the largest indie craft fairs on the east coast and has served on the Craft Bastard’s jury since 2007. Kelly is also co-founder of Hello Craft a nonprofit trade association dedicated to the advancement of independent crafters and the handmade movement. Kelly resides in Washington, D.C. and believes that handmade will save the world.

2 Responses to Get a Dose of Sunshine While you Craft

  1. Karen says:

    What a good idea! I thought you were going to tell me to get a super duper lamp. Not that that’s a bad idea, either.

    I think I’ll go outside tomorrow and knit a round on my Elizabeth Zimmerman’s 100th birthday aran sweater. Unless it rains. My next round has cable crosses and might take a half hour. Sounds like a nice dose of sunshine!

  2. Carole May says:

    Important advice-I always have a ‘sunnier’ attitude out on my comfy back porch. I too will be spending more time outside this summer. Alittle work, alot of relaxing!

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