2018 has finally arrived. I’m happy that its finally here because I feel like the second half of 2017 was a rough 6 months. Too many illnesses, deaths, rough times, harsh realizations, etc. for it to be enjoyable. I know there will always be hard times to be had, but I’m happy that I feel like my invisible internal reset button has been hit, even if thinking this way helps me to focus on what’s to come. One of my realizations late last year was that, even though I absolutely LOVE the hustle and bustle of a good craft show, they might not always be worth the work, for me, in this stage of my life. That’s not to say that I won’t apply for the next big Ottawa Etsy show this fall, but I’m definitely scaling back on them. One of my goals for 2017 was to focus on more “me” projects, which I have! And funny enough, I’ve had more custom quilt requests than I can shake a stick at! By focusing on the “me” projects that I enjoy – most of which have been quilts – I’ve gotten more interest in people wanting me to make quilts for them. Funny how things end up happening that way. But in 2018 I will continue to work on projects that bring me joy.
So now I’ve got to find the balance, as I have a tendency to take on too much at once and get overwhelmed. I have only taken on a few freelance design projects recently, but have also turned down a lot. Saying no to a project is very hard for me – I have a habit of wanting to help people. But I’ve stuck to my guns and said no. Its really hard saying no.
Another “re-sew-lution”, which is a partial continuation from last year, is NOT buying any new fabric. Unless its for a commissioned quilt, or I need something small to finish a WIP, I do solemnly swear that I will not buy any fabric that does not have an immediate purpose. Its in writing now, so I’ve got to stick to it.
On the quilt pattern front, I’ve got two projects coming out in magazines early this year! Having a pattern published in a magazine was one of my goals for 2017 and, even though they weren’t out last year, the wheels were turning. I have an EPP mini quilt coming out in the next issue of Make Modern Magazine (sneak peek in the top photo!) and a FPP throw quilt and pillow set coming out at the end of January in issue 57 of Love Patchwork & Quilting magazine! I’m SUPER excited to be a “published” quilt pattern designer, and look forward to creating more fun patterns in the future. I’ve got an entire sketchbook filled with ideas. Now to just find the time to make them come to life!
A new project that I’m really excited about has taken form, and is close to its “official” launch. I’ve started making a beeswax based thread conditioner called Sew Fine Thread Gloss!
What happened to be rather serendipitous, I started talking to a few sewing/quilting friends here in Ottawa about my desire to make this thread conditioner, and what they thought. Would the people in our local sewing and quilting community be interested? Do a lot of people use thread conditioner? I personally have used Thread Heaven, but wasn’t a huge fan, which was my main reason for making a beeswax based thread conditioner. After some thorough research, a basic business plan, a funny product name, and one recipe, I soft-launched here in Ottawa at Mad About Patchwork. The response I got was fantastic! Could this be something? Next thing I know, I hear that the owners of Thread Heaven had retired and closed the business. Wow, so there’s a hole in the market for thread conditioner! Could this actually go somewhere? I’m determined to find out, and do things the proper way – I’m registering the business, getting all of my little business duckies in a row and diving head first into official entrepreneurship. Am I crazy? I’m still working a full-time job that I love! Will all of my business and marketing training actually pay off? I guess time will tell. In the meantime, I’m happy making something to help people make things, instead of just making things for people to buy. Does that make sense?! Yes. Yes it does. Wish me luck!