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Make Space for Creativity

As summer approaches, it is time to think about fun ways to spend time.  Isn’t that what summer was all about when we were kids?  Our busy schedules and full spaces make it hard to find the space for play and for finding new creative adventures.  If you love fabrics, like I do, expanding one’s repertoire to include new techniques and directions can put a fresh spin on the same old routine. 

Linda and her playful summer creation

Scrap Lace at Capital Quilts

On the afternoon of June 1, join me for a class at Capital Quilts in Gaithersburg MD, to create scrap lace.  This fun technique welcomes precious scraps, fragile trims and textiles that cannot be thrown away but don’t always fit into our regular sewing practice.  It is enhanced with threads and yarns that delight the eye.  Even when the finished project seems unnecessary, it leads to ideas about other directions, some of which will be on display during the class.

recent scrap lace

Set up Space Where you Live

When I was spending time, for the first extended visit, in my old but new to me, vacation home in France, finding time and space to be creative was on the agenda.  There were a few projects packed in a suitcase, a trusted French Bernina, and a space designated for a little studio, but not even furniture. 

A page from Classic Sewing

The summer issue of Classic Sewing Magazine has a Sewing Room feature about bringing the space to life.  Any space that is designed for creative play needs some comfortably reliable elements and some inspirational elements.  So, the first thing that was purchased was the same Ikea table I have in my zoom sewing room in Baltimore.  It is simple, white for easy photography, and goes up and down to position it for sewing (low) and designing (high when standing).  

It was delivered quickly and once my husband finished setting it up I went to work making a pieced, fur backed blanket for my grandson’s loft bed.  The project helped me imagine the space and then order some extra Ikea basics to add storage, inspirational spaces and more.

Sewing on my journal cover

Make Time to Use the Space Often

The next project I embarked on was to make a journal cover using scrap lace created during our 2023 retreat week of embellishing fabric down the road at La Cascade Retreat Center.  You have seen this journal project here before and maybe even tried it out.  It will be my French journal and I hope it will keep my ideas and fiber art dreams front and center as I spend time in this little space.

and ironing

Working on this journal project really helped me settle into the space, test out the location of the iron, ideal heights for the table while cutting, pinning and sewing my scrap lace cover.

In Baltimore I have a serious studio in my basement that was the center of my busy custom clothing business for many years.  It is full of the remnants of that business and so very focused on Garment Sewing and Fitting.  There is also a transformed bedroom on the second floor which is my zoom studio where the light is great as well as the internet signal.  There I teach online classes, write, photograph and create.  It too is packed with files and possibilities.  

Both of these spaces are great, but I am really looking forward to being in a lean and simple space in France.  Looking out onto the river and the outdoor space through the french doors should lead to some seriously dreamy projects that move my creativity to new places.  

Stay tuned this week for more photos of this new creative studio.

Join Us for a Special Creative Adventure

Don’t have space to try new and creative things? Register to join me at Capital Quilts and we will clear away space for you to have a fun new fiber adventure with Scrap Lace.  If you are coming to the June ASG conference in San Francisco, sign up for the Organza Rose Pin class where we will explore silk organza while crafting a wonderful lapel pin.  You can also join us in France, July 17-24 this year for some serious creative endeavors at La Cascade.  I promise there will be a visit to my studio up the mountainside as well.

I will be sure to post some more studio photos on Instagram and Facebook this week, so follow along.

Happy Sewing, RAE

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