The Pillows that Just Happened

Pink Quilted Pillow Covers via cottagemagpie.com

Pink Quilted Pillow Covers via cottagemagpie.com

Last fall I made some pillow covers for my little loveseat in the front room (where I sew), and I never really loved them. I had been seduced by a bold print at the fabric store. I actually still love the fabric, but I didn’t like how it made my little nest feel. So last week I decided to make something new.

A friend of mine (who has an amazing food blog) had given me some leftover fabric that I just fell in love with and knew I wanted as my pillows. But I didn’t have enough. I hadn’t originally thought of quilting the pillows, since I already have SO MUCH going on in that room, but I decided to play with fabric and just let it happen.

Yes, I decided to let the process just happen.

I almost hyperventilated just contemplating this thought of wild abandon.

Pink Quilted Pillow Covers via cottagemagpie.com

I have never done that before. I have never just played with fabric. I have never allowed myself to just grab things from the shelf, put them together and just react to them. I’ve always had some kind of plan or scheme or recipe I’m following. This time, I didn’t think at all, I just pulled pretty things and let them, well, speak to me, really.

Pink Quilted Pillow Covers via cottagemagpie.com

I have to tell you, it was a completely transforming experience. I mean, I hate to sound all gushy and like angels sang and all that, but, you guys, that’s exactly what happened. It was like a whole section of my brain opened up and went, “OH!”

Pink Quilted Pillow Covers via cottagemagpie.com

Pink Quilted Pillow Covers via cottagemagpie.com

I love them, I really do, and I so rarely really love things that I make. Maybe because I am a person who hasn’t known who I am and what I’m doing in the world, not even what I like. I have never trusted myself enough to follow my instincts like everyone says you should, and so as a result have never been really in love with my choices.

But then, I did, I let go and followed my instincts, and made something that made me really happy. Who knew?

Of course, I might have made something really awful, but it STILL WOULD HAVE BEEN AWESOME. It would have been awesome because instead of letting my extremely high amounts of anxiety drive me to try and over-control every little bit of the creative process, I would have LET GO. I would have let the process just happen. And THAT, whether the resulting product is good or bad or ugly or beautiful is bliss. It’s soul-drenching, watering the very core of my drought-weary being, bliss. I have opened the door and I can’t go back now. Where will it lead me? I have no idea. But it’s a new world for me.

What is your way to be creative? Do you follow a recipe or let it just happen??

~Angela :-)

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Comments

  1. Mary Morris says:

    You have just stepped over the line into ARTIST. I am relatively new to sewing, coming from an art background (I taught art in public high school, was an exhibit director for an art center, owned my own art gallery), and I am in awe of all you sew and do. Additionally your taste parallels mine. Your recent experience is all about moving into the absolutely wonderful world of freedom to express, with no bounds, or instructions, for that matter! Scary, yes, but mind blowing and mind expanding, YES, that too! I am learning to FOLLOW instructions, but I too recently found myself creating little soft sculptures for Valentine’s Day and enjoying the combination of my craft and my art! Congrats, girl!

    • Wow, Mary, you impress me!! Owned an art gallery! Taught art! Goodness! Thank you for visiting, I am touched and honored. Meanwhile, I am working on not freaking entirely out that my next thing might be awful. I really like how that process made me feel, so I want to keep doing it. I suppose I can always donate anything I hate to a local charity! 🙂 ~Angela~

  2. Barbara H. says:

    I love them, too, Angela. Yea for you! That control thing – it’s so hard to lose it. It’s a great day when we realize that there’s more than one way to handle a situation and that it doesn’t have to be our way. (Still hard to believe, though….).

    • Hi Barbara!! It’s so true. I’d like to say that I’m completely over it and control-free now, but nope. I am still just as anxious as before. But I really liked how it felt to let it go, even momentarily, so I’m going to keep pursuing it. <3 ~Angela~

  3. Hi Angela, I love the pillows! They turned out great! It’s great that you can express your anxieties truthfully and hopefully over come them. You are not alone in those feelings. I do that a lot too, I hate to ruin something and a lot of times end up not doing anything. Thanks for sharing, Angela!

    • Thank you, Bobbi Jo!! Yes, exactly — I don’t want it to turn out badly, so I don’t do anything at all. And, to be honest, blogging does NOT help!!! 🙂 But I love to blog and share so I’ll keep on keepin’ on. I don’t think it’ll ever be easy for me to let it flow, but I want to keep trying. It feels good!! ~Angela~

  4. love your free-abandon pillows. the colors are beautiful. Keep on… who knows what could be next??!!!

    • Thank you, Jan!! I loved those colors so much I’m thinking I might just keep going with them and see how big it gets! 🙂 ~Angela~

  5. Angela – So glad you just let your creativity guide you. Wow! These turned out great. I love them.

    • Thank you, Sandy!! It sure feels great to do something that way. Now just to not be too worried about the next thing being awful! ~Angela~

  6. I love your cushions and that you are so pleased with them 🙂
    Don’t get anxious about the next thing not working because you will learn something positive from it whichever way it turns out.
    So pleased for you 🙂 xx

    • Thank you, Tracey! I have been trying to just “let it flow” and so far I’m feeling good about it. Not that everything is going perfectly, but at least I’m having fun. So glad to hear from you!! I hope you are well. <3 ~Angela~

  7. LittleBird says:

    Just discovered you through pinterest! Love the pillows. Now going back to see what other ideas I can “steal” from you!

  8. Just beautiful! So happy you had fun!

  9. Mary Truax says:

    Angela, the pillows are just wonderful. So soft and pretty. Perfect to welcome Spring. Think i will be making pillows from now on to match my quilts!

  10. I just love these! Pink and quilts and pillows all in one place? Nirvana sister, nirvana

  11. I love the patterns, the colors… A great little “accident”! Thanks for sharing, I’ll most definitely have to recreate, because I have beomce somewhat obsessed with cushions! 🙂
    x Motte
    http://mottesblog.blogspot.com/

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