2013: obligatory planning post

24 Jan

Yeah, I know, it’s way past the New Year. I did draft this back in early January, the same day I drafted my last two posts. But I couldn’t post a New Year’s post until after I’d posted my Christmas tree and I couldn’t post that until I’d sorted out photos and since then I’ve been busy…

Excuses excuses. Moving along.

So although we’re more than three weeks into the year, I’m still going to post about my 2013 plans. As before, if you’re all over New Year’s planning posts, especially overly wordy and thinky ones, please skip this and we will return to your regularly scheduled finished objects posts soon. Well, as regularly scheduled as they get down in this paddock.

Every New Years period I enjoy taking some time over the holidays to reflect and consider, looking forwards and backwards. It all seems quite appropriate, given that January was named for Janus, the Roman god of transitions and new beginnings, who had two faces – one for looking forward and one for looking back. I guess there is just something about being on holiday, lazing in the sun, that makes me introspective. What can I say, I’m the thinky type at the best of times. You’ll get used to it.

Janus, borrowed blissfully from Wikipedia

Janus, borrowed blissfully from Wikipedia

As I introspected, I thought about 2012 and what was good and bad about it. 2012 was a bit of an odd year for me creatively. I had lots of ideas and dreams but was quite focused on home renovations/rearrangements, and getting our business in better shape. Although I didn’t quite get everything done I wanted to in 2012, I feel really pleased to be going back into a new state of being better organised, more established, and ready for this year. On the creative front however, while I did make a few things there really isn’t enough material to warrant a review so I decided not to do a “reflections of 2012” post.

Basically, what I figured out is that my creative output for 2012 was very low, and I don’t want to repeat that this year.

So I thought about what I DO want for 2013. And there are all sorts of plans that I could make. And almost all of them have been made by someone, somewhere! So many inspirational New Year’s posts that I’ve read! I could sew to a plan, I could stashbust, I could focus on fitting or separates or cake or frosting or palettes or challenges, blog more often, take better photos, etc. And I do want to do all of these!

But what I really want to do is just make stuff. I have so much pent up desire to Just Make Stuff.

The simplest way to get what you want. From Google Images.

The simplest way to get what you want.
From Google Images.

My fantastic friends tease me that I spend so much time talking about making things and reading about making things and planning to make the perfect things and analysing the things and tidying my sewing room that I don’t actually make anything. And that I can justify my non-productivity at a drop of the hat. And I’ll, grudgingly, admit there is a whole heap of merit in this observation. They are my friends. They know me well.

So for 2013 my focus is on feeding my creative beast. On trying things and making things and enjoying the sense of fulfilment that comes with it – and learning from the inevitable moments of frustration that are likely to also come. On focusing on moving away from theory and dreams and cataloguing, to creating and making and fulfilment, even if it means some losses along the way. Not let my perfectionism, my frustrations, and my fear-of-getting-it-wrong hold me back.

THIS. This is pinned to my wall as the single biggest thing inspiring me make stuff today. Quote by Ira Glass. Image from Google Images.

THIS. This is the story of my entire life. This is pinned to my wall as the single biggest thing inspiring me to Just Make Stuff.
Quote by Ira Glass. Image from Google Images.

You’ve all heard of the cure for writer’s block? Just start writing, even if it’s crap? Well, this is treatment for creative block. Just start making, even if it’s crap. It’s time to “fight my way through”.

So, goal in mind, how does this translate into plans for 2013?

I plan to make/complete 52 items this year.

Holy moly that’s a big one.

I am calling it 52 moments of satisfaction. Or maybe 52 moments of smugness. At the end of the year I want to be able to look back and go “wow, I made 52 things this year! I feel great about that!”

It’s a big jump from the small output of 2012. But it’s my challenge and I set the rules so here is how I’m making it achievable for myself.

  • It’s not a thing a week. If I’ve worked on knitting a cardigan for a month and have produced nothing else that is ok. But I might need to offset that by finishing off a bunch of hems one weekend or settling myself down to make a dozen pairs of earrings.
  • It’s not all garments. It could include sewn accessories, beaded jewellery, embroidery, homewares, or even a really awesome cake or batch of biscuits if I feel so inclined. I’m going to decide what counts.
  • Finishing a UFO that has been languishing for ages counts, even if the UFO has hardly any work left on it. So does refashioning or remaking. Anything that makes me feel fulfilled at the end of it.

Even with me setting my own rules, this is a huge undertaking for me. So that brings me to my second plan for 2013.

I plan to spend at least 15 minutes every day on creating.

Yep, even if it’s only one seam or one row or one piece cut out I want to do something creative every day. Dancing (lessons or socially) counts. So does baking. So does blogging.

Again, it’s my challenge and I can make my own rules so I will allow some exceptions. Those are the days when I go to work and I have no lunch break and then I go straight to a dinner date then to a show then stagger in at 1am. Or the Saturday when I leave the house at 9am and come home at 11pm. These days are not frequent but I’m not going to beat myself up if I don’t manage anything on those days.

Progress to date!

The advantage of posting this so late in January is that I already have a sense of how I’m progressing. So far I’ve start and finished a cardigan, a seat cushion, and have almost finished three printed tees and a dress! And I’ve had only one day where I’ve just failed to create, because, you know, forgot.

The frustration is that the number of days that fall into the “exemption” category is high. In 24 days I’ve had five days that have just not been craft compatible. Still, 19 days of creativity for me is a milestone!

I’m feeling very excited about these plans. Wish me luck!

11 Responses to “2013: obligatory planning post”

  1. Kat H January 25, 2013 at 11:03 pm #

    I like your goals! (And considering how crazily busy your January has been, I’m actually a bit surprised you’ve only had five non-craft-compatible days!!)

    • missjoiedevivre January 26, 2013 at 11:58 am #

      Thanks! I’ve been doing my best to make it work where where I can – I even cross stitched in the van on the drive back to Wellington 🙂

  2. kaitui_kiwi January 28, 2013 at 12:19 pm #

    Sometimes the most simple things are the best, taking it back to the basics, “just make stuff” is perfect! And I love that you are calling them “moments of satisfaction” because if it isn’t making us feel satisfied then why are we doing it? Our hobbies (for want of a better word) are for fun so fun they shall be! 🙂

    Wish I could sew while on a car ride btw 😉

    • missjoiedevivre January 28, 2013 at 8:00 pm #

      Thanks! Exactly – Fun It Shall Be (apart from the occasional stupid-pattern moment non doubt.) Love it!

      I must admit, cross stitching in the van is tricky! Knitting is easier, but I didn’t have anything to do then 🙂

  3. MrsC (Maryanne) February 1, 2013 at 7:16 am #

    This is fantastic!! I am so excited!!! Go You!!! But hey, no excuses, please. Put that cross stitch in your handbag or something – creative ways of finding ways to be creative on those tricky days could be as fulfilling as the rest of it. Love the poster too, reminds me of The Cult of Done, only it makes damned sense! Love you xo

  4. Calico Stretch February 3, 2013 at 8:48 am #

    Wow this is a plan and a half so yes, good luck. I don’t think you’ll need luck as you’ve a lovely sense of what is creative for you.

    I hope The Business goes well this year and doesn’t suck too much of your time into it …. and i hope you can make it to the next meetup :o)

  5. Anne W February 4, 2013 at 11:13 pm #

    Good luck with your resolutions. I have another poster for you, you may want to print it off and put it in your sewing space: http://pinterest.com/pin/115475177916743514/

  6. Scruffy badger February 10, 2013 at 8:44 pm #

    Way hey, what a plan! I like it, good luck with the creativity. You’re creating a new habit. Soon it’ll be stuck with you ! Enjoy 🙂

    • missjoiedevivre February 10, 2013 at 10:07 pm #

      Gosh, I hope so! What a great way to think about it! Thanks heaps 🙂

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