One of the biggest dangers I've faced as I work towards designing full-time is the trap of thinking that creative self-care isn't work.
I've dropped into post-creative depression enough times that I should know better, but still, there it is: one day, when the work is finally out in the world and I'm proud and excited and tired, I wake up and find out that my world has constricted to the size of a raisin.
Where did the light go, when the sun is right there? Why does the sight of dirty dishes in the sink make my heart flop around in my ribcage like a sack of wet garbage? And there's the guilt, too: the stern questioning of self, the rehashing of time-honored questions like, why-must-we-do-this-again and I-thought-we-were-done-with-this-fuckery?
At this point, I think I've finally come to a solution: I put on pants. I leave the house. I go for a walk, or look at plants, or browse the local vintage mall for cool stuff. I let it be okay that I'm not working-working.
And inevitably, it's the second that I let myself stop stressing out about the work for two minutes, that the joy of possibility comes back to me. I'll be anxious and stupid and on the verge of having a screaming match with my sofa - but hey, go look at some colorful teakettles and Hawaiian-print shirts and I'm suddenly a-bursting with ideas.
So this afternoon, instead of hyperventilating on the floor of my studio for an hour, I went over the Fremont Vintage Mall and searched for treasures, with the sole intent of not stressing out about work. I didn't buy anything (although I often do; it's one of my favorite places to find cool housewares) - I just wandered around and took pictures of the textures and colors that caught my eye.
And just like that, I feel better.
PS. Thank you to everyone who has favorited and commented on my recent releases on Ravelry, Instagram, and the blog - it's been really exciting to work with such great companies and publications, and I'm looking forward to doing more of it in the future! (I just gotta focus and make time to look at kitschy lamps and flamingo-shaped jewelry boxes too...)