The Tenacity of Creativity

One year I made mason jar lamps filled with pine cones and gifted them to almost everyone in my family.  Another time, I upcycled the baskets used to hold wedding paraphernalia on my big day.  I painted them white and learned to sew by making liners out of fabric filled with tiny gingerbread men.

I think it’s pretty safe to say my family hated every one of my gifts.  They didn’t even pretend with me…no putting out my lamps when I visited or filling my baskets with junk and stashing them in a corner.  Nada.

I’ve long since come to my senses and stopped gifting handmade, unless I purchase my handmade on Etsy; however, when it comes to the world of arts and crafts, I tried my best.

I scrapbooked through the early days of nursing and two, four, and six o’clock feedings.  I stamped a handful of cards that were never signed, sealed, and delivered, and I sewed my daughter cute dresses when she was little.  I even made my son funny cartoon themed pants that lasted him through pre-school.

Once I stenciled a chair.

Through the years, I’ve released so much bad art into the world, it’s a wonder I keep trying.  I think I must have inherited a randomly tenacious gene.

I wasted, in total, an entire semester of college on art classes.  Now, don’t misunderstand, I wasn’t naive enough to think I harbored any talent.  I just loved to make something out of nothing.  I was the worst student in my drawing class.  I think my professor broke out into a sweat when he saw me registering for Introduction to Graphic Design.  I only passed my classes because someone had to get a C.  The other students were way too talented to be considered mediocre.

My aunt, the one who has a shrine to her son, did not even save the portrait I drew of her beloved offspring.

That ought to tell you something.

Despite rejection, sneers, and a bundle of extra worthless college credits, I continued in my pursuit of creative genius.  I have a six-foot long, 2 foot wide afghan.  My husband says it belongs in a Mexican restaurant.  The colors do suit a quesadilla, but who can use a blanket that’s only two feet wide, if that?  Tacos and beans generally don’t make a person skinny enough to stay warm under my blanket-ette.

And now, I’m certain my children inherited this tenacious gene.  Did you see our chickens?  Or worse, the cows?  My international cow??

When will the madness end?

Not anytime soon if my son can help it.

He’s officially creating practical and very usable duck tape art.

At least they make pretty duck tape nowadays, because he’s in the wallet making business.

Can’t beat something made in the U.S.A.

They are durable, large enough to fit quite the money roll, and water-resistant…not to mention the lovely color that matches my nail-polish almost perfectly.

What more can you want or need in a wallet?

He asked if he can get a credit card to go in his designated card slot.  I told him he has a library card and he’s already overdue on that bill.  There will be no credit cards for many, many years to come.

I wish John’s Wallet Co., Made in the U.S.A., much success – more than even my mason jar lamps.

FringeBoy declined a photo shoot with his wallet.

What about you and your family?  Do you too share this tenacious creative gene?

BTW here is the nail polish FringeKid and I are loving.

There’s nothing like having disco-ball nails on a dreary winter day.  They turn SAD to G-L-A-D.

Write that down.


20 thoughts on “The Tenacity of Creativity

  1. Pingback: The Age of Invention « the domestic fringe

  2. jaymers

    I love this post. In fact, I love your blog! Not to make this all about me, but were you secretly paid by my family to give me the news (gently, of course) that I need to stop giving them my creations?

  3. DarleneMAM

    My son and daughter both went thru the duct tape wallet stage. They only had plain old gray tape tho. The blue is cheery!
    You rock the glitter nails!

  4. jeandayfriday

    I love crafting, but I just never finish a project or I go into the craft store, buy tons of things and forget about them soon after I unload them from my car. But I would have definitely put one of your pine cone lamps out to show off!

    1. the domestic fringe Post author

      BUT, think of all the things you can make now! Sounds like you have a good supply. Get busy creating. 🙂 I wish I had another of those pine cone lamps to give you. Thank you for appreciating my effort.

  5. Cathy

    My oldest daughter loves duck tape and will put it on about anything, including her shoes! haha

    Cute nail polish. Looks like some my youngest got for Christmas and loves!

  6. abozza

    I could have written this post. I am a terrible, terrible artist, but I love to create and be crafty. My kids have inherited the gene. My girl is about as good of an artist as I am. My 6 year old is a little better than we are, but he should stick to making stuff out of duck tape and construction paper…not drawing. The arts and crafts in my house are ridiculous in their sheer amount, but I try not to discourage because what’s better than kids NOT playing on the computer or the xBox, but instead, creating at a table. Doesn’t really matter what it looks like, as long as they are proud of it. 🙂 I colored with my girl, yesterday, for about an hour. Talk about a stress reliever!

  7. Deb

    I’m writing that down! Your cows are great! I love them. An artist is never recognized in their own country. Write that down. 😉

    p.s. Laura made those wallets in high school. Didn’t have pretty coloured duct tape back then though. I think Stephen had a tie as well.


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