2017….what to say about it?? I struggled to find the time for the quilting projects I wanted to do. I wish I could say that I didn’t mind…but it was frustrating. I understandably had to prioritize with travel, work, and life. I commited to spending time with my son and working through my stress/feelings that was compounded with my Mum loosing her battle with cancer.
We all go through our life journeys. I always try to learn from my experiences. This year, I learnt that:
- Work-life balance is important to me and will be a focus in 2018.
- I am more productive with deadlines in place (usually imposed by other people).
- I really enjoyed giving back to the community.
I think the biggest accomplishment that I achieved this year was selling 3 quilts to a corporate art curator. This has opened my mind to actually thinking I can sell as an artist and has opened doors that I am looking forward to explore more.
Overall, I meet my goals that I made at the beginning of the year. I was pleasantly surprised by this as I wasn’t sure I had.
- Be more engaged with a wider quilting community: My most favorite thing this year was to create and send fabric postcards. I had a bit of a bump in the road with these as my Mum got really sick and then passed away. This delayed shipping and left some incomplete. I have not blogged as much but I have stayed in touch mostly on Instagram (ml_wilkie)
- Kept expanding and learning my quilt style: I focused more on minimalism this year (like my two favorite quilts) and have loved the results. I now need to decide if I want to keep my work expanding across multiple techniques and also multiple avenues (commercial as in magazines, or more textile art).
- Teach more quilt classes this year: This year I have taught my quilt design class (2x), Improvisation: Lines and Shapes (3x) and Hand-stitched blocks on the go (1). I loved teaching and want to do more.
- Submit quilts to one or more Quilt shows: I entered quilts both into QuiltCon and AQS again this year which saw all my quilts juried in.
- Work on a couple of magazine submissions and additional content submissions: I was super lucky this year as I had to quilts patterns, and a couple of articles for the MQG. I also have two quilts in Love Patchwork & Quilting this year as well….with one coming out this week sometime. I also had quilts curated into QuiltCon 2017 magazine, the first issue of Curated Quilts and the MQG’s book “Modern Quilts”. I enjoy having these projects with deadlines as it keeps me moving forward…I have no choice if I get in a creative slump but to power through and deliver.
- Release a few more quilt patterns. Start with the previously released magazine submissions: The only goal I did not accomplish this year was the release of more quilt patterns.
For 2018, my goals are a little different based on what I learned this year, and the fact I created a business for my quilting exploits.
Work – Life Balance:
- I need to work on what needs to be in my life….I need to eat healthier and start exercising at least 3 times a week, for example. I need to find better avenues to manage that stress.
- I want to commit, twice a month, to doing a weekend family activity. I have been tracking some of these activities on my other Instagram account [ml.wilkie_adventures]
- Challenge my creativity by allowing myself a project a month that is not related to deadlines. Have fun with friends in doing these challenges.
Giving back to the community is important to me:
- Complete and/or contribute to at least three charity quilts.
- Do my best as MQG Board Representative. I want to commit at least 12 hours a month.
- Do another round of fabric postcards (with a goal of 2 per month).
- I want to give back to the community with an Instagram give-away once a month of my favorite things.
Manage my productivity:
- Finish my quilt book ready for publishing. This means finishing 8-12 projects and an introduction; editing, designing and photography for these projects.
- Complete 3-4 magazine submission or published.
- Release 2-3 patterns and look into opportunities to publish patterns to print.
- Track my projects monthly to see how they are going (like I have done in the past).
Put some focus on my new business (“Idea+Design+Create+Quilt”):
- Put a business plan together with some goals.
- Need to work on getting income into my business. Start with what I make income with today – magazine publications, pattern sales and teaching. I hope to make around $5,000 – $10,000.
- Submit my work for an art show in my local area. I have been wanting to do this for a while and I am ready to sell some of the pieces.
- Create new pieces and how to sell as art. Does that mean continue selling to corporations (they need larger pieces) or do I also cater to those that want art pieces in their houses. Can it be both?
- Branding…Textile Artist, yes…Modern Quilting, yes…but do I keep with both improvisational and minimalistic pieces? or focus on one? Does this impact my business?
I have a lot of unanswered questions on the business side but I am on this journey to learn and see where it takes me. I am sure, I will have stuff not happen but I do a pretty good job on not worrying too much about changing direction if needing too. It is always good to get some of this down and think through some pieces.
Good Luck, Happy New Year, and a warm welcome 2018!!
Linking up with Yvonne @QuiltingJetGirl 2018 Planning Party.