In a consortium of creative professionals I belong to (you didn't think all this awesomeness happened without being vetted and discussed sometimes, did you?), the idea of a focus word for 2016 has been bandied about with great passion over the last few weeks. I resisted for a while, because my modus operandi is generally to wake up and figure out what I feel like doing creativity wise on any given day, and who wants to be tied down to a word to make me focus amongst my fabric? But eventually I caved, and I think it will be good for me.
Because let's face it, the current modus may be freeing, but sometimes it can be a little overwhelming to let the creative side of my business get too out of hand. As much as I love that I work so far outside of my box that I can't see the box most of the time, will try anything once (and probably fall in love with it and do over and again), and my design wall has to be huge because it's a rare day when it sees only one project on it at a time, I must admit that this whole "Squirrel!" fabric play mentality has become at times rather detrimental, as this past year I was probably more creative than ever but suffered by far the most episodes of burnout when it came to pattern completion of my ten year career. So it's time to change a thing or two.
My word of the year is FIVE. As in "I will not allow myself to be actively working on more than five projects at one time." Should a new project come along that I simply must start, then by my own new rules I simply must set a current one aside, and by set aside I mean actively put it in the UFO pile, not just shove it off to a far corner of the design wall stacked up with pins, where I can still see it and can still tell myself it's a project I'm working on. If I truly believe a design has potential, I should finish it rather than UFO it. If I truly believe a new idea has potential, it should be able to wait til one of the other five potentials is out of the queue.
I'm also actively considering using the word queue in public this year because my Anglophile daughter will go nuts with joy. But back to five.
As of today, these three projects are on my design wall. All of them I believe in and will be completing, she said with conviction:
Missed the free block? I'm sorry. It was a limited time thank you to my facebook followers. It's one of those you snooze you lose situations, and therefore I am not even showing it in full here so that you don't have to be all upset that you missed it. I'm always looking out for you, you know. The pattern will be even more fun than the block alone, of course. And it will be done because it is my top #1.
There will be a blog post, a newsletter, and a FB announcement to join this group project, test, and swap on January 6. I expect to fill all 40 slots quickly. If you are interested, make sure you read one or all of those sources on Wednesday and let me know ASAP if you are in.
#3 - Blue Nickel Studios "Painted Trees" pattern won me over. It's rare these days that I work on someone else's pattern, but I think it's important to do it now and then. Following another designer's instructions is pretty enlightening, both about what I could do better and where I rock it big time, thankyouverymuch. I'm thoroughly enjoying this fun scrappy pattern, and the color scheme definitely was an influence on the January Jumpstart block. This one will likely end up in the UFO bin now and again if I have to make way for other projects, but I do hope it will be on the wall more than it is off. Plus in the discovering of it I got to know the designer, Scott Hansen, a little better and he is a riot. Branching out (ha ha, pun with the trees) is always awesome.
|By Katja Marek|
I'm not going to kid myself, this one will end up in the UFO bin now and again too. But I'm choosing to give it a go this year and am giving it a slot in my top five right now because I think it's going to be a great lesson and good practice in tone, value, fabric choice, fussy cutting, patience, and seeing just how many tiny scraps of fabric Mr Quilting Hottie can handle on the floor of the living room at any given time. My over/under is about 13.
So FIVE. Cinco. Cinque. It's my word of the year, and by limiting myself I hope to smash my own creative boundaries.
I'm so poetic, right?