Missing Mojo – Found!

You might remember me bemoaning the loss of my Mojo in this post, the debilitating feeling when inspiration disappears out of the window.

Well, I’m happy to relate that it’s back and I’m beavering away being creative and even the wind and rain whipping past the window and howling down the chimney hasn’t dampened my spirits today!

I realise that I’ve become bogged down, especially with Social Media.  When I started writing this blog I had no idea about SEO, I didn’t have a Facebook Page, a Twitter account, a featured board on Pinterest, an Instagram account, Flickr.  I wasn’t helping other people with their Facebook Pages, Twitter accounts, websites….

Add that to the Etsy shop, packing yarn, writing patterns, answering queries as well as family commitments and actually having a life… the part of me which I discovered and which grew when I was at Art School only a few years ago was in danger of withering away altogether.

Being part of Open Studios over the past few years has kept me hanging on by my fingernails though, and I’ve loved making the exhibition pieces…


Wool Gathering 2012

'How to Knit a Sheep' NNOS 2013

How to Knit a Sheep 2013

That time of year is coming round again (so quickly!) and I’ve been rummaging around in my mind for the perfect inspiration.  For ages after making the sheep’s head, I toyed with the idea of a stag’s head complete with antlers.  The perfect place to hang crochet garlands and pompoms!  But then I realised that every time I opened a catalogue or magazine, or watched a design programme on television there seemed to be some sort of variation of a stag’s head, a rhino, a zebra or similar and I knew the moment had passed.

There are also restrictions for the exhibition too.  I work in three dimensions but making something which needs a plinth, and finding the plinth too is an added complication, so the hanging format I’ve used so far works best.

Inspiration struck a couple of weeks ago because of our local pantomime.  The Am-Dram group in the village is full of creative people and we’re lucky to have someone to devise something beyond the usual Sleeping Beauty/Aladdin/Puss in Boots offerings.  This year it was The Green Man.

Green Man Panto

Aha! the Green Man! And with some research I find this quote

His name means the Green One or Verdant One, he is the voice of inspiration to the aspirant and committed artist.

He can come as a white light or the gleam on a blade of grass, but more often as an inner mood.

The sign of his presence is the ability to work or experience with tireless enthusiasm beyond one’s normal capacities. In this there may be a link across cultures,… one reason for the enthusiasm of the medieval sculptors for the Green Man may be that he was the source of inspiration.”


I’ve sorted through my stash of fleece and yarns, filled a bag with natural colours and ordered some more from Wingham Wool Work.  I also bought a sample pack of dyes and that’s what I’ve been doing most of today, dying natural fleece and yarn, and over-dyeing some bright shades to bring them into the right colour spectrum.

Landscape Dyes Wingham Wool Works

I’ve had such FUN! I’ve looked back in the archives and it was January 2011 when I last dyed yarn and I loved the results then.  This is a very different palette, but I’m so enjoying throwing caution to the winds, and mixing up different dyes, and different strengths and dribbling them over the wool to get soft natural effects.

Landscape Dyes

My Green Man has been inspired by the cherry trees in the garden with their grey trunks.  His face is bark coloured using natural Cheviot fleece, rougher and hairier than my usual Merino, and lovely to needlefelt.  This is the story so far…

The Green Man - work in progressJust waiting for the greenery to grow!

The greenery is too damp to use tonight so I will put my crochet ‘Hat’ on as I want to finally finish the bunting pattern which I’ve been editing.  It’s looking very pretty…Crochet Beaded Bunting - Planet Penny Yarn

 I’m off to clean up the dye splatters in the utility room, but I’ll be back soon!



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16 thoughts on “Missing Mojo – Found!

  1. Mary Jenkins

    I am in awe Penny – you have so much talent – AND brilliant ideas! Best of luck with the exhibition

  2. Sue

    Wow, he is truly amazing – I love his expressive eyes and the jollity of his smile. So glad you found your mojo!

    Social media does suck up a lot of time – I have avoided Pinterest and the rest because I’m afraid I could never keep up. (I use Facebook mostly to keep in touch with family, so that’s not so hard.)

    Your dyed yarn is beautiful – looking forward to seeing the completed Green Man. 🙂

  3. Amy at love made my home

    I am glad that your mojo has returned to you, your green man looks amazing already, so I look forward to seeing more of him as work progresses. I don’t anywhere like the social media presence that you obviously do, but I know that it is a lot of work, so please try and take some time for yourself as I am sure that your readers would not want you to disappear under the weight of all of this! xx

  4. Red Hen

    Penny, good news to hear that you have found some new inspiration, you have so much talent! Your green man is simply wonderful. I can relate so much to what you say about Social Media. Rest assured that there are lots of others out there who feel exactly the same way personally I find the creative world and the business world need different spaces otherwise it is easy to let one take over the other so I have taken to timetabling different tasks and amazingly it seems to be helping!

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  6. Margaret Eyres

    Hi Penny
    Loving your green man. I have lots of felt rovings and diferent felting yarns which I bought at Knitting and Stitching but didn’t know what to do but you have inspired me to start some artwork.
    Looking forward to seeing him when he is finished.

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