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Creating an inspirational washing line

Need ideas to start creating?

Do negative thoughts rain on your creative parade?

Feeling in an arty funk?

Then an inspirational washing line might be just what you need in your arty, creative space.

I've been running arty classes for 20 years and I’ve often noticed how some students struggle with negative thoughts around creating. It’s really hard when you get locked into a downward spiral, especially when it seems like everyone else is getting on with it.

I like to talk openly about this in classes to help students realise it's a challenge creatives face from time to time and one that can be overcome with help.

Creating an inspirational washing line is one of the ideas I suggest, it's easy, you can start small, and has the potential to grow to whatever size your space allows!

If you use scraps of paper or even fabric you have lying around, it can quickly evolve into an arty show piece worthy of a place in your creative space.


  • STRING (how long, depends on how long you want your washing line to be!).

  • PEGS (just have a few to get started, I find the little craft pegs are best)

  • 10 BITS OF PAPER (I tore up some old bank statements to use!) 75 x 15mm



The items above are intended to be a guide, make use of what materials you already have, be creative with it and have fun.


The idea is to write lots of positive quotes, ideas (on what to do if you’re feeling stuck), creative prompts etc on the pieces of paper and hang them on the washing line.

When you notice a negative thought, write it on a piece of paper (to get it out into the open). Then rip it up and throw it away. Go to your inspiration washing line and replace the negative thought with something positive.

You can pick a random positive thought or you can take one that feels right for your situation.

That's it!

Simple, easy and fun to work with.

Here are some ideas and quotes to get you started, as suggested by the lovely viewers who took part in an episode of Book Art Studios TV, go here if you missed it and would like to see it.

"Be creative, be happy, be colourful" Julie Ann

"When I'm working with my hands, it's like the world slows down and I become fully present. Everything stops, the autopilot of creativity kicks in, and a flow begins." A Zee and suggested Catherine

"Open the dictionary...pick a word and use it as a starter." Veronique

"Take a piece of art you don't like, rip it in 3 or 5 pieces and then grab one piece and do something with it - draw on it, stick it to something else, etc - pin it up and just let it be. OR stick the pieces back together in a different way." Catherine P

"Imagination is more important than knowledge" Einstein suggested by Kaye (Australia)

"Don't put off until tomorrow what you can do today, because if you enjoy it today you can do it again tomorrow!" Catherine P

"Change is never painful, only the resistance to change is painful." Maureen

"Channel Liz when I get stuck." Jenny (haha)

Some of my favourite quotes and I recommend you look the authors of the quotes up if you have some time (hahahahahaha):

"Artists should handle ideas the way bankers handle money." Justin Heazlewood

"Why fit in when you were born to stand out." Dr Suess

"Don't give up! I believe in you all. A person's a person, no matter how small." Dr Suess

"The sun will rise and set regardless. What we choose to do with the light while it's here, is up to us." Alexandra Elle

Here are some ideas I've thought up too!

"Put your favourite song or band on."

"Put your apron on (that always tells me I mean business when I do that!)"

"Leave something unfinished (when you know what the next step is), that way you have a clear next step when you start again. "

"Dye some paper in coffee, it's start! And a starting point is always a helpful one!"

" Tidy up your art table/space/room!"

"Create a challenge for yourself. I.e post a daily update on social media or just to a friend."

"Enter a competition with a theme."

"Create themes to work towards."

"Make a range of cards to have in stock. Making a card is such a relaxing non-threatening and fun arty project."

"Talk a walk around your neighbourhood and look for inspiration in hidden places."

"Arrange a play date! Whether it's online off off-line (when we're out of hibernation)."

"Make an art goal and do one little step to make it happen."

"Watch a movie that makes you laugh."

"Create a dedicated time to make art."

As always, I love to see results!

Don't be shy, email me photos of your washing line when you have it up and running!

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Thanks for this!! Just what I needed. :-)

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