Creative Challenge 2015 – Intro and Month 1

Elegance and Enchantment Creative Challenge - Get in touch with your artistic side with these 12 projects!

If you caught the post where I shared my goals earlier this week, you already know that I’ve made a commitment to return to my artistic roots. I do creative things every day, but they are all in front of a screen. This year, I’m ready to roll up my sleeves and get my hands into some REAL art projects, like drawing, painting, and crafting. Every month, I’ll be tackling a different medium and documenting my results.

If you feel like you’ve been spending too much time in front of the computer and want to get in touch with your creative side, I would love it if you joined me on this journey! There is no cost to participate (other than any materials you choose to purchase), and no need to commit. I want this to be super-low pressure and fun, so you can feel free to join in on the projects that you want to— whether that be one of them, or all 12.

Here’s how you can get involved:
1. Join the official Creative Challenge Facebook Group
Ask questions about technique, share your struggles and show off your progress

2. Collaborate in the Creative Challenge Pinterest Board
Share your favorite projects, tips and tutorials. Please request to contribute to this board by following the board, following me, and leaving a comment on one of the board’s pins asking to be added. All are welcome!

3. Use the hashtag #EECreativeChallenge
Snap photos of your work and share on Instagram

4. Write your own blog posts chronicling your creative journey
I’m happy to promote, pin and share!

Again, feel free to partake in any or none of the above. I know that the more people get involved, the more fun this process will be. Sort of like a virtual art class!

Here is what I have planned for the year:
{ January 9th – February 13th }
Knitting, crocheting, sewing, weaving, embroidery or quilting

{ February 13th – March 13th }

{ March 13th – April 10th }
Paper Flowers

{ April 10th – May 8th }
Pencil and charcoal drawing

{ May 8th – June 12th }
Gardening and Floral Arrangement (yes, I am trying to reform my plant-killing ways)

{ June 12th – July 10th }

{ July 10th – August 14th }
Acrylic or Oil Painting

{ August 14th – September 11th }
Pottery and sculpture

{ September 11th – October 9th }
Mixed media and collage

{ October 9th – November 13th }

{ November 13th – December 11th }
Jewelry Making

{ December 11th – January 8th }
Dessert Decorating (doesn’t really line up with my goal to be healthier this year, but we’ll figure it out…)

Every month, I’ll share some suggestions to get the creative juices flowing, but I encourage you to think outside the box and create art that is meaningful to you. I will post a recap of the previous month on the second Friday of each month and would love to include some of your photos if you would like to share them.

Let’s get started with the first project!

Elegance and Enchantment Creative Challenge - Get in touch with your artistic side with these 12 projects!

{ January 9th – February 13th }
Knitting, crocheting, sewing, weaving, embroidery or quilting

I should be clear that I’m not going to attempt ALL of these! I learned how to knit and sew as a kid, but I’ve never gotten the opportunity to try crocheting, so I have decided to go with that. I’ve been inspired by one of my oldest and dearest friends, Francesca, who is a master crocheter (check out some of her adorable items). She’s already been warned that I plan on bothering her for tips. I have also chosen crocheting in honor my cousin Donna, who passed away last spring. She was an avid crocheter and brought so much joy to all the people that she shared her creations with.

If you plan to hop on board this month, here are some projects you may want to try:

1. Knit or Crochet a hat or scarf
We are experiencing quite the cold front right now (even in Florida). Whip yourself up something fashionable and cozy to keep warm, or maybe a gift for a loved one!

2. Create your own throw pillow covers or curtains
Try your hand at sewing, by hand or using a sewing machine, and do a little redecorating at the same time.

3. Embroider your own clothing, blankets or maybe hand towels
Take and old fashioned embroidery hoop and create something with a modern flair.

4. Start a quilt
I say “start” because I know nothing about quilt-making, but it’s seems like a complex project. If you are up for creating a whole quilt in one month, you are amazing, and I hope you will share your secrets with us.

5. Create a handmade doll or toy
My mom sewed us the cutest handmade dolls when my sisters and I were little. I know that since then, the amount of doll and toy patterns have grown tremendously!

If you’re already feeling overwhelmed, here are some resources to get you started:
– Pinterest Tutorials
– Craftsy Tutorials
– Classes at your local craft store like Jo-Ann Fabrics, Michaels, or AC Moore

Need to stock up on materials? Here are a few places to check out:
– Amazon’s Arts, Crafts & Sewing Department
– Etsy Marketplace
– Your local craft store
Tight on cash? Ask a family member or friend if they might have some leftover yarn and maybe some needles you can borrow.

Have any questions? Leave a comment and I’d be happy to answer for you. I look forward to connecting with you, fellow creatives!

This post contains affiliate links. If you purchase through these links, you’ll help support Elegance & Enchantment, and you’ll receive some amazing stuff, too. Whohoo!

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  • Reply April Hoff January 9, 2015 at 8:09 pm

    Hi Michelle! I’d love to join you! When I go to the facebook page, it says it’s a closed group, and I don’t see anywhere to be added to the group…can you invite me? 😉 Thanks!

  • Reply April Hoff January 9, 2015 at 8:11 pm

    Ooops! Never mind! When I switched to my personal fb account, it worked!

    • Reply Michelle @ Elegance & Enchantment January 9, 2015 at 11:03 pm

      Glad you got it to work and so happy to have you on board, April! I wish FB would allow business pages to join groups— I ran into this same problem myself!

  • Reply Emily @ Small Stuff Counts January 9, 2015 at 8:26 pm

    Ooh, this sounds really fun! I’m in for the January challenge. I am either going to make throw pillow, an area rug or curtains. Hmmm…so many possibilities!

    • Reply Michelle @ Elegance & Enchantment January 9, 2015 at 11:02 pm

      So awesome, Emily! The hardest part is always choosing one project. I still haven’t completely decided yet, but I think I’m going with a scarf!

  • Reply JaneEllen January 10, 2015 at 1:26 am

    Was going to make some new pillow covers anyway. Want to use some white faux fur I got at Jo-Ann’s for holidays and now will use for pillow covers along with some other fabric I have to try out my new sewing machine. Any excuse right? All my pillow forms have been covered and recovered many times. When I find thrift store pillows I like they come home with me for my collection. Give them a good wash first of course then have at it. Go thru my fabric stash first then if nothing rocks me I look for some new or thrifted fabric. Just got yards and yards at Goodwill of linen/cotton blend with pretty print, maybe a window shade and curtains.
    Been wanting to make pillow covers with paint tarp and stencil on them and a new table runner. So much I want to do, not enuf hours in days. Happy New Year

    • Reply Michelle @ Elegance & Enchantment January 12, 2015 at 3:44 pm

      So awesome, JaneEllen. White faux fur sounds so chic. Thanks so much for joining the challenge and I can’t wait to see your project (or projects if you decide to tackle more than one)! Happy New Year!

  • Reply Theresa (Tee) January 10, 2015 at 10:10 pm

    Hi Michelle! I’m completely with you on this! Working on creative projects is one of my main goals this year. Very excited. Love your blog by the way!

  • Reply Emily @ Table + Hearth January 12, 2015 at 10:36 am

    So much fun! I’d love to participate!! I’ve been wanting to get back to creating more and having the monthly prompts would really help. There’s a stack of crochet patterns I’ve been wanting to try so I know just where to start this month :) Thanks for putting this all together!

    • Reply Michelle @ Elegance & Enchantment January 12, 2015 at 3:46 pm

      So happy to have you on board, Emily! Have you crocheted before? I’m a complete beginner— I may be hitting you up for tips!

  • Reply Denise January 16, 2015 at 11:28 pm

    Does tackling the mending pile count? That would feel like an accomplishment! Game on!!

  • Reply Kim January 29, 2015 at 1:12 am

    I’m excited to join in on this challenge. I can’t join in on the January challenge though, sadly. I’m allergic to some sort of chemical in the yarns. I’ve tried knitting before when my friend first started and it was fun and I was learning pretty quickly and I made a few things such as mug cozies and kindle cozies and a scarf and headband. I thought the mug cozies were the funnest to make and design. Sadly after only about 3-4 months of knitting I got some intense hives on my arms and I’d maybe be okay with just wearing longsleeves but i’d rather not risk it again, it was soo bad (I read up online that others suffered from hives on their arms as well when knitting). Ah well, at least there other creatives pursuits in the world.

    Excited for sharing some watercoloring goods and other such things! Thanks for making this creative challenge, sometimes I get wrapped up reading online and jumping from pin to pin that before I know it, the day is over and I haven’t created anything with my hands. This challenge is a good reminder to step away and indulge in creating and not just gawking at all at the craftiness online :)

    • Reply Michelle @ Elegance & Enchantment February 1, 2015 at 9:51 pm

      Hi Kim! What a bummer to hear about your allergy. I’m so sorry to hear that you had to deal with those hives as a result of it, but glad you were able to pinpoint the source of the problem. The Creative Challenge is open to whatever you’d like to create, so don’t ever feel like you are pigeonholed into my suggestions. :) Look forward to connecting and seeing your creations!

  • Reply Kim January 29, 2015 at 1:15 am

    I just realized sewing is also an option, hooray, I can join the Jan challenge afterall! I love upcycling, maybe I’ll finally get around to making some sewing projects I’ve had on my mind for years :)

  • Reply Lauren @ The Thinking Closet February 7, 2015 at 8:47 pm

    This is wonderful. Love the idea of the monthly challenges and how communal it is! (Already spied some inspirational creations on Instagram using the hashtag.) I might need to join in for WATERCOLOR next round because my Instagram feed is full of drool-worthy Watercolor art that I just can’t get enough of. Will work on acquiring a watercolor set by then! Eek!

    • Reply Michelle @ Elegance & Enchantment February 11, 2015 at 3:48 pm

      Thanks a bunch, Lauren! I’m so amazed by the talents of the community. Please join us next month for watercolor! I know you will have so much fun. xo

  • Reply Simone February 8, 2015 at 4:28 pm

    Hey Michelle!
    I love your Blog and your Calligraphy Prints. I’d also love to join the Creative Challange! A great idea to be much more productive… And a very nice mix of different creative topics. As I read them i had pictures in my head already…

    Sorry for my English, it’s not the best.
    Greetings from Bavaria

    • Reply Michelle @ Elegance & Enchantment February 11, 2015 at 3:50 pm

      Thanks so much for joining up, Simone! We are so happy to have you as part of the challenge. And your English is excellent! My English isn’t even the best sometimes, and it’s my first language. :)

  • Reply Stacy Samam November 4, 2015 at 9:52 pm

    Man! I am only seeing this now!!?? I SO want to join. There will be no cake decorating for me (maybe gingerbread zombies), but I will try to catch up and do something. Super idea!

  • Reply Joules Newton January 1, 2016 at 5:39 pm

    I missed this in 2015. Are you going to do it again in 2016?!??!? Please say yes!!

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