How has the Covid-19 lockdown affected your creativity? Have you had more time or less time on your hands to sew? Have you felt inspired to make all the things or too anxious to thread a needle?
At the time of writing, I’ve been extremely lucky enough not to have friends or family severely affected healthwise by the pandemic, so that hasn’t been a factor for me. I acknowledge that this is a privilege, and I am aware that some of you reading this may be going through a harder time right now – if this is the case, I’m sending you lots of love. I hope that craft – or at least dreaming about creativity – has provided you with some release, relief or rest during this difficult time.
My experience of lockdown has been up and down, feeling grateful for my fortunate position (our health, a happy home, an online business that is weathering the storm, a garden…!) while also struggling most days with juggling an ever-changing small business with looking after my two year old while we haven’t had childcare for four months.
I’ve had verrrry little time to myself. Some weeks I’ve been too frazzled to even go to the loo, let alone think about sewing anything… while at other times I have felt incredibly inspired and energised to make stuff, and have harnessed this urge to power on through and cut out a new project even if my body is screaming, “Go to bed!”. It just goes to show that one’s energy level (fuelled by inspiration and motivation) can be more important than the amount of “free time” you have when it comes to getting things done.
I’ve also found that my style has swung quite significantly with my feelings about lockdown. In the first few weeks, I was gravitating towards solid muted colours such as navy and black – perhaps to match my mood of anxiety, fear and the newness of being cooped up indoors. Later I had the urge to make things in ALL the colours and bold prints – mirroring the wave of rainbows popping up in windows, reflecting my need for optimism and a desire to brighten the day of anyone I happened to see. Plus I’ve realised I’ve been experimenting more with styles and silhouettes, perhaps because there’s no one looking to judge if they didn’t work out!
I made a video sharing some of the things I’ve made during this weird, unprecedented time, from April to July 2020. I say “some” of the things I made during lockdown as I also made lots of face coverings, samples for forthcoming patterns for work, as well as birthday gifts for family. Phew!
Sewing pattern: Stevie dress (smock add-on version)
Fabric: Design by Kenna Sato, printed on sweet pea gauze gifted by Spoonflower
Read more about this make in my Three Double Gauze Stevie Smocks blog post
In these photos I’m wearing it with a Tabitha T shirt (pattern in my book Make It Simple), whereas in the video I’m wearing it with a Coco top sewn in Tilly and the Buttons x Craft Cotton Co organic cotton jersey.
Sewing patterns: Safiya trousers (pattern in my book Make It Simple) + Stevie top
Fabric: Lilac viscose linen gifted by Sew Me Sunshine
Sew the trousers along with me following my Insta sewalong. Watch me squeeze the Stevie top out of the remnants and speed sew it together!
I am loving my handmade wardrobe at the moment! It just goes to show what you can get done if you have the inspiration and motivation, if not the time 😉
Author: Tilly Walnes
Video: Filmed by Tilly, edited by Jenny Lingham-Doe
With thanks to my partner for the lockdown photography!