The scene was peaceful at a barn in Fletching on Saturday as a craft group gathered for the day to be creative and have fun.
A log fire was burning in the stove but the barn door was open on a lovely sunny day and light flooded in as members of the group painted, stitched and rummaged in boxes to find that special something to enhance their work.
There was no pressure to excel. It is the ‘doing’ that is key for this craft group which is run by Jolene Payne who said: “It is all about the process and not the end result.”
She said the group was particularly good for people who normally criticise themselves saying: ‘I am not creative’, ‘I can’t do that’, or ‘It is too expensive’.
Instead of a specific craft technique being chosen each month there is a theme and September’s theme was paper.
Some of the group were making notebooks, others cards. Some started out thinking they would make cards but then chose to turn their paintings into wall hangings.
All those attending were enjoying the lack of pressure to be great at what they were doing. Some were surprised at how well their work was turning out.
Jo Turner, from Worthing, said: “I like the fact that it is experimenting and taking time out to explore and have fun without having to worry about what I am actually producing.”
Joyanne Williamson, also from Worthing, said: “I like the way it opens your mind to all kinds of different ways of experiencing creativity, challenging yourself in different ways in a very non-judgemental environment.
“There is no pressure to be able to do anything. No pressure to feel you have to know what to do. Jolene is there to answer questions, there to support you, and you develop a really good friendship with other people who are also being creative. It really is lovely.”
Penny Heater, from Newick, said she too was enjoying the doing without being particularly attached to what would be achieved at the end of the day.
Claire De Shon, from Bishop Stortford, was totally relaxed as she stitched her scrapbook pages into its felted cover. What would she use it for? “Whatever I decide to put in it. I’ll just see what happens.”
Claire said that for her the sessions were all about getting in touch with her inner child. “It is good to be creative and see what comes out of it.
“As an adult you feel you have got to have a product at the end. Kids just do, and that is what it is about for me here, just being in the moment with whatever I am doing.”
The next meeting of the craft group is on Saturday, October 31, when the theme is Creative Journal day: Be it a fabric journal, a paper journal or a hanging journal. This is described as: “A day to express your very talented creative selves. Journal creating is an incredible rewarding process that helps you to shine in all of who you are.”
Then there is a Christmas crafting weekend on Saturday and Sunday, November 21 and 22. “Due to the success of last year’s group, I am opening the barn for a long weekend for you to come and make a selection of beautiful Christmas gifts. Lots of projects to choose from, or send me some ideas to inspire others.”
Read more about the craft groups on the Earthed in Fletching website.