Hello there lovely Buttoneers! I still can’t believe I did it. I successfully completed my Create 30 blog challenge – I made 30 different things before I turned 30 years old and popped the little handmade treasures into the Eliston Button Etsy Shop! Hooray! I also can’t believe that this is the final time I will use the Create 30 banner above – I loved this banner. I loved it waaaayyy more than my Create 28 and my 27 Before 27 blog challenge banners (I even made the ‘Create’ into a print as one of the challenge makes!) Parts of me will be sad to see it go. I am pretty sure that after a year, you are all sick of the sight of it, but for me each time it appeared was not only a little dose of handmade goodness crossed of the list but it was a little mini hurdle I had jumped, a little step further down the road exploring my creativity and a whole heap more confidence in putting it all (and myself) out there. Each use of this banner meant that another make was completed.
With each Create 30 make, I had imagined, designed, made and completed one more creative adventure, which felt like a mini fiesta every time [Insert maracas, fruit bowl headdress and confetti cannons galore…plus cake…you can’t celebrate without cake!]
Create 30 – I Did It!
As I mentioned in my final Create 30 make post at the beginning of the week, I really wanted to make a round-up post of the complete 30 mixed in with a smidgen of my thoughts and feelings, a dash of reflection and a pinch about future plans – the perfect recipe for an end of challenge roundup, but also a bit of closure for me. After a year of strict deadlines and sometimes making into the night, I feel like I need this therapy session with you lovelies! Breathe out the panic, anxiety and self-doubt…breathe in the calm, relaxation and relief!
I needed this challenge. As much as I am really glad I have completed it and I can have a break, I needed to do this. This time last year, I was feeling demotivated, stuck in a creative rut and was having a really yukky time with massive neighbour problems and trying to sell our house. I needed something to focus on and deadlines to chase my butt into a faster lane. I needed motivation and passion for what I love to do back into the forefront of my mind. The main concept was to make new stuff, try new crafts, broaden my existing creativity and throw a new spin onto old ideas at the same time as giving me a adventure outside of what we were going through. (You can read all about it in the original Create 30 – Lets Do This! post)
I work my best with fire beneath me, with a deadline to push me outside of the comfort of having time to do things ‘whenever’ and ultimately never getting them done. I need goals and hurdles to jump over with problems to solve. I need to be able to write a list and check it all of one by one until I am all done – I am a professional list maker (my desk was covered in so many sticky notes and scraps of paper with things to do for the last weeks of the challenge, that I could barely see my desk!) I said it best in my Confession Time…And Time for a New Challenge? blog post…
“When I studied Art and Design in college, I would leave each project right until the last minute and then cram it all in the last few days, the deadline forcing me to not question my creative decisions but to go with it. To show up, to do the work.
Productivity > Procrastination. Progress > Perfection”
I think the important thing for me was to always keep it fresh. I hated the thought of making the same thing over and over to fill up the slots. I wrote a list (surprise surprise!) of my favourite things to make which included prints, weavings and embroidered felt flowers etc and spread them evenly across the 30 makes ensuring there was enough time for each one. I knew I wanted to progress and push my creativity too so that meant getting better at weaving and braving bigger looms and illustrating more prints and starting new fabric collages. Again, I explained it best in the starting post…
“I want to break all of the
anxiety/panic/impending doom milestones down into easy, manageable chunks rather than big steps and giant leaps. I want to be able to tick them all off one by one and feel that sense of pride when I get to the end result (and will hopefully distract from saying goodbye to my twenties) I want to smile at each success and acknowledge each hurdle as I go along on this new adventure.
I want to grab all of those little ideas that have been floating around in my head for so long, grab them all up and finally explore them all, one by one. I want to get them all out and let them flow and change and develop. I want to let them fail and be worked out and reorganised…”
And that is exactly what I did! Sometimes I worked at my desk, sometimes in front of Netflix, sometimes listening to podcasts – I got through a lot of podcasts! I even kept my working environment different as to always feel fresh and new and interesting – Go on, ask me a question about True Crime…I should have a degree in those podcasts!
In the beginning, I laid out all of my ideas on sticky notes and placed them on an editorial calendar to see where I could fit them all in around other non-Create 30 posts to keep it interesting for all of us, and break up my screen time in front of my laptop. I made sure I made some similar things to amalgamate together into one single blog post so that I could actually fit them all into the year and got my head down!
My craziest time was Christmas – I suddenly had a flurry of festive ideas and not enough time to act on them! Don’t worry, they are all noted down for future seasons!
I bloody love Christmas and with all of the festivities but knowing we were definitely buying a new house and keeping up with Christmas orders was a toughie, not to mention Christmas tutorials and festive blog posts – they are some of my faves!
You will never hear me say that completing this Create 30 blog challenge was easy. By no stretch of the imagination was it a doddle. I always woke up in the morning ready to hit the ground running to try and get through my to-do list. I didn’t ever get a week day off unless I was unwell and then had to catch up later. I had strict-ish rules of not working weekends – that was my down time (although a lot of non-print items were made whilst in front of the TV in these times to really utilise my time) But, overall it was enjoyable.
I didn’t anticipate a house move or not having Internet for weeks. I didn’t anticipate how long some things would take to make or design. I didn’t realise how much I would have to dig into my creative imagination to use all of my describing words to paint a picture of where you could hang a weaving, or to describe the tactile texture of a fabric collage for my Etsy listings…
I loved making and getting things made. It seems pretty obvious seeing as this is my job, my chosen career path and my hobby rolled into one, but I had lost that with all that we had been through. I had lost the umph, the get up and go, the creative mojo. I couldn’t think creatively, imagine up new ideas – I was stuck. In quick sand. Sinking into a place where only the best patronus spell in the forbidden forest would get me out. So crafting, designing, making, photography, listing, blogging, hearing your feedback – that was my spell. It got me back to feeling more like me and to be honest, the house move pushed me further and harder into getting things made ahead of time and to get more organised.
I didn’t have time to second guess or doubt myself or my makes which meant I jumped in head first and learnt how to fly on the way down, taking creative risks and ultimately bettering my work.
The downfall of this was my one major hiccup (minus the lack of internet for a few weeks) when I made a silly typo on a new print I had just launched and I didn’t even spot it right there in front of me until my
Sister new quality control manager emailed me. It was so silly and no one even noticed it, but I had a pit of your stomach, freeze-on-the-spot-mid-carrot-stick-chomp, don’t-take-another-breath-until-you-have-processed-the-words-in-front-of-you sick feeling until the print was re-made, re-posted and all was calm again! You can read all about it in my blog post ‘Why It’s Okay to Make Mistakes (And a Life Update)
Some days went well. Some days were overwhelming. It was a real mix. At times I felt relaxed and in control, others felt like I was running full speed (not something I ever plan to do!) on a hamster wheel, constantly trying to reach an impossible destination so that I didn’t fall off and flash my knickers to the world (This actually happened off a bench on my first date with my now fiancé – I must have been wearing fantastic knickers!)
On the whole, Create 30 was by far my most successful blog challenge. I completed it in time, regardless of a house pack up and move that I didn’t expect would happen when I launched. Despite days where I wanted to pack it all in and run away with the circus. Despite days where I was just exhausted or feeling fizzled out or just wanted to top writing blog posts for a while. I planned this challenge out meticulously compared to the previous two as well. I mapped out my 30 makes, sometimes they changed or shifted to ease the pressure, sometimes I scrapped them entirely and rapidly thought of something new, but overall there were no major crying sessions that I was never going to complete it all, no break downs and a lot less panic than before.
That said, it wasn’t easy. I tried to make things ahead of time so that I had a few things made in-hand, especially over the house move. I tried to batch photograph things or bulk edit them in groups to save time and my sanity! I used my time wisely, weaving and sewing or making fluffy pom poms in front of the television in the evening or in front of a film at the weekends, freeing up my time in the day to type, photograph, edit etc.
This way I also balanced my time between work and play and spending time with real people instead of hibernating away in the Eliston Button Headquarters until it was all over…Can I come out now?
More than anything I am super thrilled I was brave enough to set sail away from my comfort zone. It wasn’t until I pushed away from the shore in my little creative boat that I felt braver and more capable of new things. I grew. My creativity grew. My ideas and imagination grew and with that my passion for what I always knew I loved grew. M creative cup feels full of new inspiration and ideas for future makes and at the end of the day, I could not ask for more.
I am so thrilled with each and every one of my Create 30 makes. Each one means a great deal to me and as always with my little doses of handmade goodness, my heart and soul go into every piece.
From fun home decor to embroidered felt accessories, I feel like Create 30 really explored the things I love to make the most and pushed my creativity to make them the very best they could be.
I played around with ideas, adventured with designs, trialled rough drafts and problem solved my way through any hurdles I came across. I am so utterly proud of myself and the work I have achieved in this last year.
So…without further ado…Here are (in order) my Create 30 blog challenge handmade treasures…
- Hot Air Balloon Embroidery Hoop. With a touch of imagination you could imagine you are floating among the button clouds and the bluest sky, sun warm on your face looking out to the horizon with the world below your feet. Perfection!
- Purple Mini Woven Wall Hanging One and Two. Pretty purple mini woven wall hangings to brighten up your home. Perfect for small spaces or even larger ones to add a tactile dose of gorgeous texture to your wall with a punch of bright, happy colour.
- Crochet and Drink Tea Illustrated Quote Print. “There is an Old Lady Who Lives in my Soul, She Likes to Crochet and Drink Tea”
- Crochet the Day Away Illustrated Quote Print. Perfect for any lover of crochet! This print really does add a splash of colour and a great creative reminder to any home or crafty space that will be sure to spark conversation and a knowing giggle or two – us crafty kids know how it is!
- Blue and Teal Embroidered Felt Lapel Pins – Set of 2. Each brooch will brighten up any lacking lapel, hold together a pretty pashmina, decorate a beautiful bag or even be framed for a piece of wonderful wall art! The possibilities are endless.
- Navy Blue and Gold Embroidered Felt Lapel Pins – Set of 2. Deep rich navy blue compliments to elegant gold embroidery thread in these Art Deco inspired embroidered felt lapel pins. Hand embroidered with sharp, geometric or curved lines giving a little nod towards the beautiful and glamorous designs of the 1920’s and 1930’s.
- Raspberry Pink and White Embroidered Felt Lapel Pins – Set of 2. With their geometric shapes, straight lines and delicate patterning, they are sure to make a small but bold statement and catch your eye from afar when jazzing up an outfit.
- Christmas Sprout Pom Pom Garland. There is something about those fluffy little balls of crafty goodness that just make you smile. Thoughts of parties, festive home décor and lots of fun are definitely words I would combine with thoughts of pom pom garlands!
- Christmas Sprout Pom Pom Decorations Pack of 4 and Individuals. These little friendly faces are sure to bring festive cheer to your home and become a staple Christmas decoration that will make you smile every year you dust off the decorations again!
- Festive Woven Wall Hanging. This festive woven wall hanging is sure to add a huge splash of Christmas cheer to your home for the season with its little nod to Father Christmas!
- Create Word Art Prints – Pink and Grey. Perfect for any maker or crafter, knitter or sewer, painter or illustrator, artist or designer or just wonderfully creative people everywhere. This original ‘Create’ word art illustrated print would be a great and inspiring addition to someone’s craft room, art or craft studio or even in a creative corner of their home or office to get those creative juices flowing into pure creative goodness!
- Rainbow Pom Pom Garlands. Bright, colourful and happy little fluffy balls of joy to decorate your home, adult and children’s rooms alike, parties, weddings, festivals or even your car!
- You Are My World Button Art Quote Prints – Blue, Pink Hand Lettering or White with Grey Background. A perfect message for the people closest to you, whether it be your loved ones, your partner, your children or even your pet! This ‘You are my World’ print is sure to add a splash of colour and a huge dose of warm, loving goodness to any space.
- Blue and White Embroidered Felt Flower Brooch. The fresh, crisp colour palette of this flower brooch is sure to brighten any outfit with its soft, felty goodness.
- Just Want to Nap Quote Print. “Some Days I Feel Like Super Woman, Other Days I just Want to Nap” – I think even the most motivated among us can relate to those days where sometimes that extra cup of coffee just isn’t going to cut it!
- Beach Huts by the Sea Fabric Seaside Collage. This warm, happy seaside scene is sure to brighten up a rainy, grey day or add a touch of summer to your home, whatever the season.
- Seaside Harbour Fabric Collage. The sky reflects the water beautifully with its light and wispy fabric swirls and waves giving it depth and sumptuous texture – Perfect for adding colour and texture to your wall art collection.
- Craft Supply Enthusiast Illustrated Print. Pens, pencils, buttons and beads…Sewing machines, cotton spools, needles and yarn…Glue guns and glue sticks and scissors galore! You’re not a craft supply hoarder – No way! You are simply a Craft Supply Enthusiast! Hooray!
- Stationery Enthusiast Illustrated Print. This super fun Stationery Enthusiast print adds a splash of colour and a great creative statement to any home or crafty space, or office as a reminder that it is fabulous to have such enthusiasm for something you are so passionate about, whilst making you smile at the same time!
- Teal Tassel Mini Beach Woven Wall Hanging. A small slice of beachy heaven and a compact piece of eye-catching wall art, this mini woven wall hanging is perfect to small and large spaces alike without being too overwhelming to your existing wall art.
- Teal and Green Tassel Mini Beach Woven Wall Hanging. he sound of the gentle, rippling waves kissing the soft sandy beach, the sun warm on your skin adding a glittering, golden glow to the shoreline and the fresh, salty breeze running through your hair are all created in your imagination when gazing at this woven wall hanging from the comfort of your own home – how lovely!
- Blue Tassel Mini Beach Woven Wall Hanging. You can almost feel the sea breeze on your face and hear the sound of seagulls in the air. The sun gently warming your skin and the soft grains of sand between your toes with this little mini beach weaving!
- Shooting Star Quote Print. “She lay in the dark of the garden and watched shooting stars with magic in her eyes…” Make a wish!
- Large Beach Scene Woven Wall Hanging. From the crisp white fluffy clouds right down into the depths of the long seaweed tendrils at the bottom, this beautiful beach scene woven wall hanging is sure to add a rich dose of tactile and colourful goodness to your home décor.
- Wonderful World Illustrated Garden Print. “As She Planted the Flowers in Her Garden, She Thought to Herself…What a Wonderful World” This gardening quote print is perfect for anyone who loves gardening, the great outdoors or even just loves sitting in the garden with the sun on their face with a big cup of tea!
- Purple and Raspberry Pink Embroidered Felt Flower Brooch. Rich purple felt and deep raspberry pink embroidery thread come together to create an eye catching accessory that is sure to dazzle and add a gorgeous splash of colour to any outfit with its soft, felty goodness and create compliments everywhere you go!
- Slate Grey and Black Embroidered Felt Flower Brooch. Dusky slate grey felt and bold black accent stitches alongside a gorgeous Art Deco inspired button centrepiece, is sure to add a touch of glitz and glamour goodness to any outfit.
- Happy Place Quote Print. “On a Cloudy Day, She Went to her Happy Place Where the Sun Shone Down on her Face” Whether you want to brighten up your home decor, cheer up a friend or simply have a happy reminder that you have the power to change where you are – this super fun and colourful original quote print is perfect for doing just that!
- Teal and Neutrals Large Woven Wall Hanging. From the glittering navy blue woven yarn right down into the depths of the long deep teal tassels at the bottom, this beautifully coloured woven wall hanging is sure to add a rich dose sumptuous textured goodness to your home decor.
- Pink, Turquoise and Rainbow Large Woven Wall Hanging. This one of a kind weaving is super happy and makes for a gorgeously vibrant statement piece for your walls. Its fun spirited, vivacious colours and small pockets of magical detail is sure to catch your eye and add a huge splash of colour to wherever you choose hang it!
Blimey! I am so super proud of them all and it makes my little creative heart all warm and fuzzy to see them all together – It really puts it into perspective how much I have achieved on a personal level, how far I have come and how far my creativity has adventured compared to waaay back in my ’27 before 27′ blog challenge. Which has been your favourite Create 30 make?
30 was A LOT!! It was a lot to list on here, let alone make and create descriptions for in my Etsy shop! Blimey! I am feeling rather exhausted from it all and definitely need to recharge my creative batteries for a while and take a blogging break.
As I mentioned in my final Create 30 make post and on my Instagram, I am closing my Etsy shop for a short while as I am off birthday adventuring for the week and want to be able to switch off for a while. The Eliston Button Etsy Shop will re-open on Tuesday 19th June and I will announce it on my Instagram and on my Facebook page (both places are the best place for keeping up to date with all of the snippets of life, behind-the-scenes sneak peeks and a lot of Art, Design, Craft and Adventure!
Blogging wise, I am pooped! It has been a real roller coaster this past year, especially over busy Christmas sales and the house move period. I am going to be taking a longer break from blogging to recharge without the pressures of deadlines and scheduling.
I want to revive the creativity, figure out the future of Eliston Button and do a bit of a stock take to see where I want to expand or trim down to make this little creative biz work the best it can.
I am very much looking forward to making again without worrying about it being ‘perfect’ for Etsy, not to mention the huge heap of home decor D.I.Y projects I have in mind and have had to put on the back burner until after Create 30 to focus on! We are still living amongst a whole heap of boxes and with a lot of renovating/decorating in our future, it will be really nice to have homey days and making days and focus on getting organised without the blog to worry about for a while! I also have a list as long as my arms (which are actually quite short come to think about it – not T-Rex short, but short all the same!) of blog related tweaks and designy bits and general spring clean bits and pieces, that I have never had time to do, that I want to play around with behind the scenes.
A whole heap of self-care, relaxation and general lack of stress, pressure and panic will also do me a heap of good so that I can come back fresh, (hopefully) full of new ideas and ready to go!
I already have some big ideas off the back of this challenge and I plan to be back on the blog with lots of creative goodness around the end of August/ start of September to share them all! I am gazing into the potential of new adventures. New crafty goodness adventures, new blogging adventures and a new year of life adventures – I turn 30 on Sunday 11th June! 30 eh!? That’s a whole other blog post!
I will still be around on social media (maybe not as strictly scheduled as I have been this past year) but certainly dipping in from time to time to say hello, keep you up dated with what I am up to and reminding you of the handmade goodness you can find if you grab a cup of tea and explore the Eliston Button Etsy Shop!
Blimey! If you have got this far through this
blog post therapy session then 100 glittery button points to the Hogwarts house of your choice! It’s a biggie! I had initially planned to split it into two posts but I am eager to go on holiday next week and not have to worry about posting my blog post and scheduling my social media! I neeeeeedddddd a break! Haha!
I am pretty sure I have covered it all though. Just remember that the Etsy shop closes tomorrow until Tuesday the 19th June and to follow me on social media where I will be lurking until I am back after a blogging break…and probably some naps…
Have a fabulous summer lovelies (Don’t forget my For the Love of…Summer post for all of the summer makes and sunshine vibes!) Also, remember to subscribe to this blog and become a Buttoneer to get blog post updates straight to your inbox so you don’t miss a thing! (It’s free!) and share with your friends to keep the crafty goodness going – it helps my little creative biz in a really big way 🙂
Until next time, meet me for a chat with a cup of tea in the comments below. I’ll click the kettle on!