My Year of Making Challenge January 20, 2015 16:22

patterns and colored pencil sketches

I like to make things. That's probably pretty obvious, given my chosen career, but I don't feel like I have a lot of time for hobbies and experimenting with creation for fun. I often don't even feel like I have time for the design work to make my own products! Whether you share that feeling, or you just like to be inspired by what other people are doing, I think you may be interested in the challenge I've taken up for 2015.

It's called Year of Making, and it's a pretty open-ended challenge to make something new every day. One way to interpret this would be to create an entire project every day, but that's a bit much for me, so I'm giving myself a pass by accepting contributions to larger projects (like knitting a few rows of a hat, or coloring in a drawing from the day before), and including cooking and work projects in the mix.

If you want to follow my creative adventures, I'll be posting daily on Instagram with #yearofmaking.

If you want to know more about what #yearofmaking is all about, I recommend checking out Kim Piper Werker's ebook about it, and her podcast interviewing the woman who started it all, Miriam Felton. I'd love to see what you're making, too!

knit Rikke hatBeef stew and corn muffins from Best Recipes

One of the first things I made was this hat, using a free pattern called Rikke. It's slouchy, and easy.

Recently, I made beef stew, using a cross rib roast from a cow share that I got from a local farm. I also tried a new corn muffin recipe (both from Best Recipes, by go-to cook book). Both were incredible.

The cocktail is one that I made up on the spot, called Ballyhoo, after this silly cup Sean made me with leftover stencils from a custom project that proved to be a lot more challenging than I'd anticipated. I've gotten tired of the old standby, gin & tonic, and have been really favoring bourbon lately. Here's the recipe:


2oz bourbon
1oz (or less if you like) Rose's lime
(I like 4 dashes or so)

bourbon cocktailromantic heart sketches for Valentine's Day

I've been working on tons of sketches for new designs to put onto glassware and mugs this year. I know I should be planning ahead many months in advance, but so far, that doesn't seem to work out for me. I'm working on a line of silly, romantic, cute things, suitable for offbeat weddings. We're going to be SO READY for Valentine's Day, 2016.

sketching bugs, playing with fat markersgeometric colored pencil sketch

My main reason for doing #yearofmaking is to get back into the habit of sketching, and trying new things. Often, drawing is a means to an end: getting my idea onto a product to sell. I'm completely missing all the unpredictable things that come up when you try new mediums, and get out of your comfort zone. I used my kid's fat, chewed up, half dried out markers and had FUN.

I also love to cook and make cocktails, and I'd love a place to share my recipes and experiences. I read Austin Kleon's book, Show Your Work, and it really moved me. I like to share my process, and I like to talk to people about it, even when it's scary because it's not finished, and I don't really love it yet. I want to hear what you think. I want to see what you make. And I want to be more creative. Want to join me?