Hello! Happy 2016! Is anyone still out there? I’ve fallen so out of touch with blogland, I don’t know what’s going on anymore! But to anyone reading, hello and happy new year. I hope you’re well.
Last year I took a big intentional step back from blogging and it was pretty wonderful. As much as I loved sharing things I’d made and the community I felt here, I just wasn’t getting enough out of it. I’m an extremely slow blogger and I always had other things I would rather be doing besides taking and editing photos and writing and editing blog posts and then trying to share and promote the post on social media. I couldn’t keep up with everything, so I decided to let this part go and I did continue on sewing (though it felt like a lot less). And I shared a lot on Instagram and took part in a wonderful community there.
Some of my favorite makes of 2015
I also had the goal to simplify my life, to have, consume, buy, do, want less. I won’t get into how it all went, but I’ll say that I failed and I succeeded and failed again and it’s an ongoing goal. My life isn’t dramatically different, but I do try to make conscious efforts and smart decisions to move towards a simpler life and though we’ve got a loooong way to go, we’ll continue to do what we can.
One thing that I thought about over the last year as I continue to grow and maybe even establish myself creatively is a desire to find “my thing.” You know how some people have a specific thing that they are really good at and they find themselves becoming known for that thing and then they go on to teach that thing and write books about that thing and become professionals and wildly successful and get to do that thing all day long? Or they have a project with a cool hashtag that really puts them on the map and gets them noticed. Well I want a thing! But I’ve never been able to come up with my own original thing. They all seem to be taken by people who are actually really good at them and have been working on it for years. Until other awesome creative people come up with new ideas and I’m like, shit, why didn’t I think of that!?
Picking knitting back up. I do this once a year.
Anyways, I don’t really know what I want to do but I am feeling like I want to practice being more creative and explore different crafts, see if anything sticks and just have fun trying new things. Last year I started following Meighan O’Toole on Instagram and she was challenging herself to a #yearofmaking, where she committed to doing some creative practice every day for at least 30 minutes for a year. I think she got the idea from Kim Werker and the original idea traces back to Miriam Felton, as far as I can tell. Well Meighan learned a lot from her experience and it was really inspiring to me too. I decided that committing to a year of making might be what I need to stay out of creative ruts, learn new things, meet new people, maybe open new doors.
Trying my hand at natural dyes during The Modern Natural Dyer Work-Along
I made a list of things I want to try this year. There are like 13 things on the list right now. Some of them are things I’ve done before and just want to explore more, like knitting or quilting and some are new and just seem interesting like watercolor painting or embroidery. I don’t expect I’ll get through all of the things on the list and do expect that some of the things will change as I get distracted by the latest crafting trend. (Ooh, weaving? Sure!) Some days I’ll paint a portrait and other days I’ll just doodle. Or maybe I’ll make a cocktail. Hell, last weekend I counted painting my daughters’ faces as my creative practice for the day! And hopefully I’ll still sew! I’ll always go back to sewing.
Wool yarn hand dyed with madder extract
I don’t plan on posting to instagram every single day, but I will document my creative practices as much as possible and share them there. I’m still trying to come up with a hashtag for all my pics so I can have them in my own pool. And I’m going to try and write a blog post at least once a month to share the things I worked on that month. So towards the end of this month I’ll share what things I focused on in January.
Watercolor painting with my daughters
You guys, this may last like 2 months. I’m kind of a slacker like that. It’s probably why I don’t have my own “thing.” Or maybe it’ll stick and be amazing and awesome, supportive people out in the interwebs will help me stay motivated. Who knows! Hopefully it’s the latter. I hope that publishing this post will be enough to light a fire under my ass on nights that I just want to watch Netflix or go to sleep, ’cause, you know, I told everyone on the internet that I would do it.
Wish me luck! Maybe you’ll join me? Regardless, I can’t wait to see what comes out of 2016!