Over the beginning part of this year, I gradually realized that I had more time to make things. Bit by bit, my days and evenings were opening up, and I found myself with time to experiment with different ideas. Partly this is because my youngest was getting older, and partly, I think, it's because I'd made a commitment to get creative with my children on a regular basis, and the general air of creativity and experimentation was at least as good for me as it was for them. (This was one way I solved the problem of not having time to do my own stuff; I simply focused on art activities we could all do together instead.) At any rate, as I had more time to make things--things that didn't fit into my kids and art blog--I really wanted to talk about and share them, and I started this blog.
Of course, besides a way to share, a blog is a great way to document. I learned to embroider this year, and I sewed clothes for myself for the first time--just skirts, which are easy, but still! I got very crafty in little ways, and I challenged myself to write tutorials for several items. I wanted to pick out some of my favorite projects from 2011. First I thought I'd make a little photo collage, but the more I thought about it, the more I leaned towards Pinterest. I've been avoiding, thus far, pinning my own projects, because I don't want to come across as all hey! look at my blog! But for my own personal use, it's really great to have a board set up with pictures of my favorite creations from this year. (If you want to see all of them, the board is here. But don't feel obligated!)
two-layer drawstring skirt. During the spring and early summer, I set out to sew several skirts for my daughter and myself. This was the last one I sewed, and the best--it felt sort of like a final exam (although I still have much to tackle with skirts--like zippers, for example). I had an idea of what I wanted and I set out to do it, without a pattern, and what I ended up with pretty much matched the picture I had in my head when I began. There is so much happiness in that for me!
boy dolly (which, by the way, my daughter loves--she says he has a "beautiful smile"). I fiddled and finagled with enough here that it was interesting to make; I knit the overalls pretty much winging it; and the hair, the hair, the hair!! I love his overall personality. I also like making gifts, I like making things for my kids, and this was a gift for my daughter. Of course it's a favorite!
I can't post pictures of all my favorites here (which is another reason I decided upon just making myself a board), but one more--our wool felt Advent calendar, photographed in the proper season this time.
So, this is a sampling of my favorite things from 2011! Truly, I was all over the place with my efforts this year--stamp carving and bookbinding and sewing and embroidering and knitting and things I can't even categorize, like making crayons and candles. Sometimes I wonder if I'd be better off focusing--would I then really excel at that one thing? But I can't imagine doing that, not yet, anyway. I am having much more fun following my scattered interests and seeing what I decide to do next. (Quahog beeswax candles? I totally didn't see that one coming, to be honest!)
What about you? What did you create in 2011 that stands out for you?