#365craftingtime: experiences & process

#365craftingtime | a 365 challenge | momentsotlivefor.com

It’s about half time (164 days) since I started this challenge. Unbelievable, but I made it to here. I didn’t quit. I had some slips through this time, but thanks to my rule of catching-up, I didn’t stop and have everyday filled with a little bit of crafting. If you don’t know, what I’m talking about… in September 2014 I started a challenge called #365craftingtime. The challenge is to craft everyday and if it’s just sticking some washi tape on an envelope or sorting through photos. The main goal is to make something with your hands. I’m a programmer and work entirely at the Mac everyday, so I’m happy to do something by hand in the evening. The challenge was the right way to turn this hobby into a habit.

Now it’s the most normal thing for me to keep my hands busy in the evening or sometimes even in the morning before I go to work. I lerned a lot in the past 164 days. For example origami figures are perfect for this challenge. They are mostly quick to make, you have something to decorate your home with and see your process. The same is it with greeting cards. Fast to make, something to show and a gift for friends and family. Three things at once. Simply perfect. More than that, those little and bigger projects triggered my creativity in other parts of my life too, like at work and in cooking. And my creativity isn’t fading, instead it is growing even more. I’m totally in crafting mood, like you can see in my post about my crafty year 2015.

my #365craftingtime process documented with the Collect app | momentstolivefor.com

The only thing that’s a little bit hard at the moment is documenting the action everyday. In the last weeks I so often forgot about taking a photo, when I was crafting. So I had to fake it later. Even harder is to post it on the tumblr blog everyday. I’m so behind with it at the moment, therefore it’s my goal to create a new routine around it. I was so sad to see the Everest app shutting down. It was the perfect app to document the challenge, because you could set a date for every post and even choose a date way back. On tumblr I have to post it in the right order, when I want the posts to appear chronically. But I still love the Collect app. It’s so magnificent to see every month filled with crafty pictures.

When I started the challenge in September, some bloggers joined in on this challenge immidiately, some did it later and we are getting more everyday. On Instagram look for the tag #365craftingtime. There are so many creative, fabulous photos from everyone. When I wrote to some of the first participants, who started along with me, and asked them to share their experiences with me and my readers, they were in immidiately. I’m so happy to present you four inspiring ladies and what they lerned while working on this challenge.

Anne Marie of oh.hello.anne

favorite #365craftingtime photo by oh.hello.anne

Follow Anne Marie via Instagram

“As an artsy fartsy person, discovering the #365craftingtime challenge was indeed a pleasure, because I get to do what I want which is paper crafting and paper quilling and at the same time I could share the things that I do to the world.

As the days go by, it gets harder to think of ideas on which projects to do because it is a daily photo challenge and we all know that artists sometimes have the trouble of coming up with a new idea. In order for me not to loose ideas, I have to do tons of research in pinterest, behance and Instagram, I also look around me and it would even surprise me that I could come up with something by just looking at different angles. The pleasure of crafting kept me going, but I temporarily had to stop because of some personal matters like moving from the Philippines to the United States of America, imagine that huge change in my life. I certainly learned a lot of things and the most important is patience and originality. If a crafter does not possess those qualities, they would definitely not achieve success. Documenting my process is very simple, I first do my crafty project and then I take a picture of it and upload it in Instagram, just as simple as that.”

Lauren of Lauren-likes

favorite #365craftingtime photo by Lauren Likes

Follow Lauren via Instagram & her blog

“When Sabine announced this challenge back in September it could not have come at a better time for me. I was in one of those ‘everyones stuff is better than mine and I have nothing to make’ funks. Truly, this project pulled me out of the trenches.

I am using the collect app to add a quick photo everyday of what I create and am so proud to say that I have not missed a single day! This is the most committed to a project Ive ever been and what makes it possible is the flexibility. I can count anything I want to count as a creative act each day. We travel a lot, so I cant create while Im traveling (for the most part) and that is actually a great thing for me! Im able to break off the thoughts of ‘only paper and glue mean you are creating’. I will give myself a photography challenge or will collect things or will just be intentional about taking photos to use in a project back home and count those photos as my daily creating. When I am home, sometimes I will spend hours editing photos for the blog, as much as I would rather be making with my hands, this is still an integral part of the creating process for me, so it counts. Sometimes, something as simple as cooking something new for dinner gets counted.

Creating and making are a part of all of our daily lives, if only you choose to acknowledge it. For the most part though, I do find time to actually sit down in my craft space, use my hands and make. Even if I have no direction, I find myself wandering into my craft room and will wake up in a daze not knowing why Im there. The answer is: Im there because this has become such an established habit for me that my body literally gravitates towards that room after dinner without my brain telling it too. Im in love with this. Not only do I plan to finish this project strong, but I plan to allow my mind, body and hands to continue pulling me to my workspace daily, for forever.

If you want to participate in a project like this, but aren’t sure you have the commitment, my advice is to set simple and flexible goals. Commit to something like working on a project (not finishing) for 10 minutes a day or taking a photo of something colorful everyday. Give yourself a direction, but not strict boundaries. The accountability of the Collect app has been wonderful for me. It gives me a notification around 6pm, which is when I normally start creating. So If I have forgotten, I am reminded to either start or to stop and take a quick photo. The photos are not important to me, its the accountability and the documenting that I have done my task for that day. So, find what works for you and dont stop until it becomes part of who you are!”

Tanyalee of The Drawing Board

favorite #365craftingtime photo by drawingboardau

Follow Tanyalee via Instagram & her blog

“I first heard about #365craftingtime on Instagram. I love painting and drawing and had been wanting to find a way to commit to it every day for a while so this project was perfect. At first I thought it would be an easy challenge, but we all have days where other things take priority and we just can’t spend the time painting or drawing or being creative. In the beginning I was motivated because I was seeing a lot of posts showcasing amazing creations on Instagram, but as I suspected, other things got in the way and I ended up forgetting all about the project – until the new year. I thought it was as good a time as ever to start again, and I was on holidays from work so had more time to commit. I have learnt that for me to succeed with this project I need to keep it simple – so I have taken a calendar and diary art journal approach – small entries shouldn’t be hard to complete even when life gets busy. I really like sharing my progress via Instagram and my blog. I have received some really lovely feedback recently which motivates me to keep going.

I love that there are no real rules for 365 Crafting Time. It gives me the freedom to decide exactly what I want to create on any given day. I think rules would make it a bit more difficult for me to commit to. I often find that rules make me feel stressed and blocked creatively. That is why I love this project so much just the way it is.

Thanks Sabine for motivating and inspiring me with this project – being creative is very therapeutic and is the perfect way for me to end my day.”

Megan F of Peach Sponge

favorite #365craftingtime photo by Peach Sponge

Follow Megan via Instagram & her blog

“I started this challenge, because I love to craft and I don’t do it enough. This was a way to push myself to create more and to try new things! I add it to my to do list every day to remind me. I’ve learned to push myself to try something new, and I’ve learned to be confident enough to share my creations – people are generally always supportive, even when what I’ve made/painted doesn’t look fantastic! To make the process easier for me, I added a rule that baking can be a part of my Crafting Time. I love to bake and it is something that I don’t do enough.

What keeps me going? The fun of it! I love crafting and it is so satisfying. Even if some days I just make an envelope, stick washi tape to something, or even if I totally ruin whatever it was I was making it still feels good.

I think I am doing quite well. I’ve missed a few days here and there, generally only because I was out all day having fun so that is totally fine with me. I show my creations each day on instagram and use the Collect app that Sabine recommended! It gives me a little reminder each night if I haven’t added the photo that day.”

It’s so inspiring to read about everyone’s experiences and how these lovely, creative ladies adapted the rules to fit their routines. Thank you, ladies, for sharing your thoughts with us.

I’m looking forward to the second half a year of crafting. If you feel inspired, you are welcome to join us. Simply use the tag #365craftingtime on Instagram, when you share your daily crafty projects. Have fun! 🙂

a crafty 365 days challenge – wanna join me?

#365craftingtime | a 365 challenge | momentsotlivefor.com

This weekend I had endless time for crafting. On Monday morning I woke up, feeling happy, calm and balanced. The activity of crafting was not the only factor for my happiness, but it was a big one. When I sat at the kitchen table and looked at my photos from my one year of cups-challenge, the wish in me grow, to take on a new challenge. I love looking back at these photos, knowing what I’ve accomplished going through with it for a whole year and lerning so much about photography, light and composition. So I decided to start a new 365 days challenge: I want to craft everyday for one whole year.

These are the rules:

1. Craft everyday.

It doesn’t have to be a whole new project everyday, it’s enough, if I just put some washi tape stripes as embellishment on an envelope. The important thing is, to sit down and do something creative with my hands.

2. Document everyday.

To be accountable I will document every little crafty thing with a photo and collect them in the fabulous app ‘Collect‘. There I have the perfect overview above all days and what I’ve created, because it shows one photo every day. At the end I can print every photo with date and text like you can see it here. There’s an export function to save these calendar cards from this app.

Collect app

Above that, I will post the photo to Instagram and a new tumblr blog I created for this purpose. That way I have every photo in one gallery for everyone to see and follow. That’s another beauty of the Collect app: you can share the photo and text directly with Instagram or some other Social Medias or save them in your Dropbox.

3. There will be some days…

…that I don’t find the time to craft, not even a little thing. By that I don’t mean regular days, being stressed from work or full with appointments. I mean days like Christmas or birthdays, when I enjoy time with friends and family and nothing more. This is one from the lessons I lerned from my cup-challenge. Therefore I give myself permission to pause my challenge on these days, but I will have to craft two things instead of one the following day. As said before, it doesn’t have to be something big.

Wanna join me?

I would be delighted, if you join me on this exciting journey. You can simply post your photos on Instagram with the hashtag #365craftingtime. That’s all.

If you want to announce the start of your personal journey, you can use the cover photo from me or create your own.

If you want to be able to show everything you created with one hashtag, maybe you can use the official hashtag plus your name, f.e. #365craftingtimesabine or something similar.

Do you have any questions? Feel free to contact me via email (blog@momentstolivefor.com) or Instagram or just leave a comment here.

Let the crafting begin 🙂



what I’ve learned: a 365 challenge

in a blue mood | one year of cups | momentstolivefor.com

What a journey. One year, one cup a day. Almost. In some months I took only every other day a photo of a cup and never got every day of a month. But I made it to the end of 2013 with every month filled with at least 16 cup photos. I made it through the entire year with this challenge and that makes me so proud.

It’s so fun looking at all these pictures of different cups at different times of day and different places. But I still know exactly, when I took which photo, and that is so exciting. It’s a documentation of my life in cups. I can’t wait to see these pictures printed in a photobook.

cup of tea at grandmothers home | one year of cups | momentstolivefor.com

All photos were taken with my iPhone 4s and edited with my favorite apps VSCOcam, Afterlight, Lo-Mob, Picfx and Snapseed. Although I have countless more apps on my iPhone, these are the ones I use regularly. I treasure the filters of VSCOcam, Lo-Mob, Picfx and Afterlight. Especially the moody ones with warm light are my favorites (for example F2 on VSCOcam). Snapseed and VSCOcam I used to change the exposure, temperature and contrast and cut the photos. Afterlight is perfect, when you want to downscale your picture before the upload. This way they are much smaller in size, load faster and don’t have the original size, so it’s somehow safe from copycats.

Using my iPhone and not my big camera made it easy to take photos and edit them on the go. I had my camera with me everywhere and everytime, ready to capture the photo of the day. And in the same move post them to Tumblr through their easy app. Because I uploaded some pictures at the same day, I could have used the calendar settings to post them on an earlier date, on the day of the photo. But I found this option too late. But maybe you can lern from this.

working space shared with a cup of coffee and a cat | one year of cups | momentstolivefor.com

If you consider a 365 challenge: just do it. You will lern so much. And even if you struggle because you left out some days, don’t let yourself discourage you. This happens. Everyone has some days, when the motivation is low or there is too much going on and you just forget your project. And this can naturally go on for some days, but after that you will have time again and then just go on with your project, your challenge. Just pretend as nothing has happened and if you did the last project thing a day ago. Don’t let a pause discourage you. It’s such an amazing feeling reaching the end of the year and knowing: I did it! I made it through 365 days. That you didn’t get every day doesn’t matter.

writing and a cup of coffee | one year of cups | momentstolivefor.com

And most important: Don’t overextend yourself. It will do nothing good, if you for example try to craft every day an entire project, if you have to give up after a few days or weeks, because you just don’t have the time. Make little steps like ‘crafting everyday’ a goal, not an entire project. Just a step further, and if it’s just a small one, like folding three corners of an origami star or just one origami figure or preparing the background of a picture. Every step, and if it’s this small, counts as crafting.

Hopefully you are inspired and motivated to make your own 365 challenge. I loved mine and will always be happy, when I’ll look at these photos and think about what I’ve accomplished.

PS: Here you can read, what I’ve wrote in between this challenging year Two photo challenges, one year of cups: the first month and half time at my 365 photo challenge.