Thursday, October 20, 2011

Finding Inspiration {Rouge & Whimsy}

When you pursue a creative endeavor—writing, sewing, paper goods-making—on a regular basis, sometimes the creative goes out and you’re just left with the endeavor, which if you’re not careful, can feel like a chore.

Everyone goes through dry spells of creativity where nothing is inspirational and nothing is good. (I also had this feeling when I stared at my closet this a.m. when I was deciding what to wear.)

Recognizing that everyone has ruts is the first step. If you have a bad day, you have a bad day. End of story. Don’t beat yourself up! Try a few things to get out of your dry spell, but if it doesn’t work—take a break and move on. Tomorrow is another day.

Here are a few of my tips for getting out of a creative rut:

Stop comparing. Take a break from Twitter, reading blogs, Etsy, whatever and focus on your own work rather than the work of others. Think about what you’re making, why you’re making it and who you’re making it for. If you can answer these questions confidently, then why should you worry about others?

Get out. Leave your work space and go out into the world for inspiration. Take a walk in the woods, on the beach or somewhere in nature. Take photos of houses, of trees, of colors of flowers that make you feel good. Be observant, deeply observant about your surroundings and try to pinpoint what you like and why you like it. Can any of this translate into your work? Or if nature isn’t readily accessible, check out an art gallery, peruse art books in the library or people watch at a coffee shop. Inspiration can be everywhere if you look for it.  

Switch it up. Do you create in the evening in your room? Maybe you should work at the kitchen table in the morning. For me, changing my work environment is a powerful refresher and if it helped me cram for tests in college, perhaps it will help you too.

Take care of the simple tasks. Not up to creating? Great. Maybe now is when you should catch up on email, look at bills and taxes or do the other mundane things. I bet you even have laundry to fold. (blegh)

Overall, don’t beat yourself up over a lack of inspiration. Sometimes there is a deep-rooted reason for a lack of inspiration, but sometimes you may feel uninspired just because. Don’t think too hard about it—accept it.

Thanks Krystina for letting me share! I hang out on my blog at and you can see the products of some inspiration in my etsy shop. :)


  1. These are great tips, Erika! I agree with the stepping away can be really helpful :)

  2. Comparing myself is definitely a creative kill. Great pointers.

  3. I totally needed that! I always compare.....and breaks from the social networks are much needed! Thank you!

  4. thanks for letting me know i'm not the only one who needs to reset, take a break, and to stop comparing. sometimes it feels like i'm the only one with the creative block!


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