“Creativity is contagious, pass it on.” -Einstein
Would you believe me if I told you that my grandmother was 84 years old and active on all social media outlets from YouTube to Instagram? Grandma was determined to explore sustainably inspired art. Motivated and driven to succeed, she embraced any challenges that came with learning new technology. She used her acquired knowledge to expand her repertoire. Her inspiration was fueled by nature, everyday surroundings and magazines. She enjoyed researching and working regularly to perfect her craft. "Staying active and always learning helps me feel youthful and keeps my mind sharp," she would say.
Grandma had learned to sow at a very young age and she loved making her own clothes. My mom remembers feeling extra special in one-of-a-kind pieces that were sown by my grandma. The dresses she made were elegant, with clean lines, in beautiful prints, and often belted for a defined waist. She played with colors, patterns and silhouettes in a way that made her clothes feel flattering and feminine. In addition to sewing, she also had a knack for knitting and crocheting.
A recent trip to the United States inspired my grandma to create an entire art collection of handmade pieces that incorporated repurposed materials. These decorative owls, made out of recycled cardboard through an elaborate refining process, became her signature item.
These crocheted clutches, unique and stylish, yet simple and functional for the woman on the go, were meticulously created re-using soda caps.
Here is a practical tote that received a fun makeover with a little twine work and repurposed leather. Its versatility and generous sizing make it a breeze to travel with from the beach to the farmers’ market.
My grandma's creative output is a way to inspire us in tapping into our own desires to explore our creative abilities. Let’s dare to be curious at any age. So, if you have been thinking about starting a new project, fueling a hobby, learning a new skill, but you have been waiting for all the stars to align, use this story as a launchpad to make the leap and JUST START. Courage begins with those first steps and creativity requires taking risks. Getting comfortable in the discomfort of what is novel is when growth happens. Striving for progress and not perfection means that we don't have to have it all figured out in order to begin. I have learned that creativity knows no boundaries and it can be renewed at any age. It is not an innate characteristic that we are born with but instead it’s an acquired skill that can be cultivated and developed over time with effort and practice. When we nurture our creative impulses and welcome new learning experiences, we make unique connections with different regions of our brains in the most fascinating of ways.
In the words of Albert Einstein, creativity is contagious. When we fully embrace creativity, we allow our minds to move beyond our fears. That’s exactly how we reach a place where possibilities can be reimagined and dreams become reality. So, here comes a surprise. If you enjoyed reading about my grandma’s dedication to learning and creating as a way of life, then accept my friendly dare. Share your own story of embracing creativity or overcoming obstacles to follow your own passions.