Making time for creativity

Time for creativity.

How to find the time.  It’s the million dollar question isn’t it?

I know for myself, finding time is a priority. Not just because quilting it’s what I do, but because I have to do it. It comes with being an artist or any kind. Whether you write, quilt, paint or cook, making time for something you are passionate about is good for you soul.

Screen Shot 2013-01-24 at 9.43.09 AMWhat is the minimum time needed for creativity?

How do I do it? Many of you know that at one point in my life, “15 Minutes” was my life mantra for creativity. As a new mother, I found out quickly -but in a very good way- what people meant when they said, “Time? Wait until you have child! You won’t have time!” In those days I discovered  that 15 minutes-a-day to be creative, was just enough time to keep me connected to my creative process. Amazingly, I could still do everything else I had to do! Sometimes it had nothing to do with quilt making. Sometimes it was taking 15 minutes to make something new, fresh and delicious for myself and family. Sometimes it was coloring with her, or stacking blocks…or writing in her baby journal.

Screen Shot 2013-01-24 at 9.39.06 AM

Make a boundary around it.

Be firm and selfish about that block of time.

It’s easy to get overwhelmed by life’s responsibilities but it’s worth it to find a morsel of time that you can give your self to be creative and freethinking each day.

See how TIME actually includes “ME” in it?

Permission granted!

Screen Shot 2013-01-23 at 12.20.53 PM

Overwhelmed? Are you organized?

I get overwhelmed when my studio is  a mess…(which is usually) …But ~ I find when I clean, I get a HUGE boost of creative energy. Perhaps that is why I make a “great hot mess” of my studio!  So for starters, get rid of clutter. Take 15 minutes to tackle big cleaning projects, walk away and comeback alter for another small block of time. Small amounts of time used on overwhelming tasks makes them more manageable and sometimes even fun!

FUN? Cleaning?

As you clean, or go about your day, make a list of projects,or sketch out an idea, so you can come back LATER, and have FUN with your ideas!Screen Shot 2013-01-24 at 9.21.43 AM

Visualize your time, through out the day.

Screen Shot 2013-01-24 at 9.52.54 AM

Think about HOW you will use that time the next day, so when you sit down to work, you are ready to go! I dream quilts, come up with great ideas in the shower, and while sitting in traffic…( I do live in NYC after all… most great thinking is done in traffic)

Keep a pocket diary in your purse or briefcase to capture those ideas. Keep a good pen and pencil on hand too, I prefer sharpies! A little COLOR can take you a long way!

Screen Shot 2013-01-23 at 12.20.16 PM

Even if your 15 MINUTES is plain old, “sit down and put your feet up,” have stack of books and magazines available for inspiration.

Screen Shot 2013-01-23 at 12.20.42 PM

One you start to think about  time in smaller increments during the day, you will be surprised at how you DO have the time to be creative.

Be gentle, Be confident, Create!

Victoria Findlay Wolfe is a New York City based quilter, fabric designer, and author of 15 Minutes of Play (C&T publishing), president of the NYC Metro Mod Quilters, board member of the nonprofit Quilt Alliance and since 2009 has run several community drives with BumbleBeansBASICS. Born and raised on a farm in Minnesota, Victoria’s passion for quilt making runs deep in her midwestern roots. She credits her quilting influences to her grandmother’s double knit crazy quilts that kept her warm growing up. Her biggest supporters are her loving husband, Michael and daughter, Beatrice. Follow her main blog at:

and her popular teaching site:

This entry was posted in creativity, Guest Blogger by quiltalliance. Bookmark the permalink.

About quiltalliance

The Quilt Alliance is a nonprofit 501c3 organization established in 1993 whose mission is to document, preserve, and share our International quilt heritage by collecting the rich stories that historic and contemporary quilts, and their makers, tell about our nation's diverse peoples and their communities. In support of this mission, the Alliance brings together quilt makers and designers, the quilt industry, quilt scholars and teachers, and quilt collectors to further the following goals: To promote the understanding of the quilt as an important grassroots art form. To make information about quilts available to a broad public. To educate the public about the importance of documenting quilts and quiltmakers so that their stories will not be lost.

3 thoughts on “Making time for creativity

  1. Oh, it is so hard to make that 15 minutes happen! I do believe that a little play time is necessary to nourish the soul, and I love the bloggers who post on 15 minutes–they are so inspirational. My mojo is definitely down so I’ll try to clean up and see what happens. Thank you for igniting and inspiring me today!!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s