Something I've been loving lately is the concept of Slow and mindful stitching. Over the recent holiday break I intentionally tried to not work as much as possible (always a challenge when you work from home) and be more present with my kids and myself. My hands and mind are always antsy for creativity though, and I had been fawning over slow stitching ideas on Pinterest (here's my embroidery board if you're interested) so I decided to start my own, no stress, no pressure, no expectations, freestyle project.
The idea of "slow stitching" is pretty literal, just slow down and stitch simply for the relaxation and mediation it brings, not necessarily to complete a project or for any end result.
I found this excellent article that goes into all the nuances with lots of inspiration if you're interested in reading more! But for me, it has been all about getting away from structured work projects (although I do love them) and just taking it one small, slow stitch at a time.
I chose to start a fabric roll (or scroll) by just hand stitching a bunch of scrap fabrics together into a long strip, and then adding bits of embroidery here and there. It's grown quite long and I can keep adding on to either end.
I personally love the raw, textured edges of fraying or ripped fabric, so I left my scraps that way. I had no plan, just stitched whatever came to mind.
I've got a big handful of floss scraps that I'm slowly picking away at! I think this will be an ongoing project for whenever I need a little stitching escape. :)
I have touched on this idea before, for my book "Doodle Stitching: Embroidery Art" I created a fabric scrapbook journal along the same lines! Here are some pages from that.
Slow stitching projects are a great way to experiment and try out different techniques and stitches.
Or maybe try a Stitch-a-Day project! Here is part of one of mine, I had no plan and just added a few random colorful stitches each day to this ever growing, organic design.
(This project appears on the cover of Doodle Stitching: Embroidery Art!)
Here's another meditative stitching project for you, this Free labyrinth pattern!
Try stitching it up with your favorite color(s) or maybe a skein of DMC color variations!
When you're finished, you've got a lovely little labyrinth to mindfully trace with your finger.
Or if you prefer a *little* more structure or guidance to your slow stitching, look for my mandala embroidery patterns, I find it very calming to stitch the same stitches over and over around the circles. This is one of my faves:
Or perhaps a whole lot of the same stitch over and over, try out this Rainbow Planet design!
I hope you'll give slow stitching a try for yourself!
Whatever you choose to Slow Stitch, I know you'll enjoy it and feel the benefits.
I will leave you with this adorable cat my 7 year old daughter freehand stitched with variegated floss, it's my new favorite thing ever. <3