Hello lovely Slow Stitching friends!
Hard to believe I am writing this on Christmas Eve. There have been times this year when it felt like time was standing still, and then times when it felt as thought it was zooming by so fast. It has certainly been a bit of a tough year and my heart has ached for the state that our world found itself in. But through all that has been thrown at us, kindness and joy has endured. From a teddy bear in the window, to pavements filled with chalk rainbows, we found a way to stay connected, to spread love.
We found a new superhero in our health care workers. What champions they have been. For us in Australia we cannot forget our Rural Fire Fighters and the heroism they showed in fighting some of the worst bushfires our country has seen. Through drought, fire, pandemics, and human rights injustice, somehow, we find a way through, our spirits have taken a hit, but our light can never be extinguished.
From the bottom of my heart, I want to thank our first responders our healthcare workers, and our emergency services.
The year has not all been full of woe. We welcomed a most precious baby boy to our family, our little Lion Cub Leo. We have watched these past seven months as he grew from a grumpy newborn to the happy smiley little bub he is today. He has brought so much joy and love and is adored by his big sister Matilda. He is cheeky and has wasted no time trying to get around, developing his own unique commando crawl.
My hubby and I both took the leap and entered in to two new business partnerships. Tim has teamed up with a couple of good mates to open a Bar, and I formed a business partnership with the remaining committee members of the Blue Mountains Makers to open a retail shop. It has been a lot of hard work, but our shop is open and stocked with the best products from local Artisans and Makers in the Blue Mountains and Surrounding regional areas. 2020 has certainly been the year for new challenges, but it is exciting to see these new businesses grow and develop.
I have put a lot of time in this year to grow my little business The Maker’s Stash. I am proud of what I have achieved so far, and I am so excited for what I have planned. New products and new patterns and kits will be coming in 2021 and I cannot wait to get started on them. I have soooo many ideas! There will be new paper shape templates added to my range, new threads and notions will be added to my current catalogue. I am planning on filming more video tutorials and Stitch with Me videos. There will be new EPP patterns, I will be releasing some Beginner EPP kits and patterns, and I am extremely excited to do some Mystery Box Pattern Kits. There may even be a Christmas Advent to look forward to at the end of the year!
I am looking forward to taking my little shop out of my studio and on the road to some local quilt and craft fairs next year. I have already booked a stall in at the Craft Alive Hawkesbury event and Camden Quilt Show in July. Fingers crossed the pandemic has well and truly eased by then. I look forward to getting out and meeting the wonderful crafters. EPP is my passion and I love to share it.
We are lucky that we have this craft to turn to when the world outside is bleak and we are in isolation. Slow Stitching has always soothed me, and I called on its meditative powers a lot this year to help me get through. This year I enjoyed experimenting with different embroidery and decorative stitching over my EPP. I tried sashiko and Kantha stitching, and I liked the textural element they brought to my projects.I played with new shapes, such as the honeycomb, but of course I could not pass up projects using my beloved hexies.
I continued my learning to knit journey, although it has kind of stalled since having Leo. I worked on some crochet projects as well, and I am particularly pleased with the blanket I made for Leo.
Most recently I have started a new quilt project, The Alexandria Quilt by Jodi Godfrey. I have to say I am pretty addicted to working on it and pretty much have been sewing on nothing else for the past two weeks or so!
Next year aside from working on new pattern ideas, I have an exceptionally long list of WIP’s I would like to work through and get finished. So many are almost completed and just need to be framed or bound off.
This year I hosted the #iloveeppparty2020. After having so much fun hosting it last year, I knew I wanted to host it again. So many people participated, and it was wonderful seeing everyone’s EPP makes. You can still follow along using the hashtag or check out the Highlight on my Instagram Stories.
This past month I have been hosting the #eppxmasornamentsal with the lovely Emma of @vintagesewingbox. We have had so much fun making EPP ornaments from the free patterns that Emma and I both put out. I found making the ornaments became a little addictive! It has been lovely to see my patterns made and hung up on Christmas trees or sent to friends as gifts.
I look forward to more sew-alongs with you all in the new year!
The past two years I have selected a word to help me focus on my goals and what is important. In 2019 my word was Balance and this year my word was Nourish. I must admit I kind of failed miserably at achieving my goals and working towards these two words. But the new year is all about fresh starts and second chances, right? So, for 2021 I am going to aim for both Balance and Nourish!
With two kids, two businesses, and working as an Interior Designer consultant, you could say I am pretty busy! Next year I really want to work on balancing all those things with spending time with my family, spending time exploring the great outdoors, self-care and creating a cozy home and beautiful garden. I am going to try and organize my time differently, and I am NOT going to write myself ridiculously long, unachievable weekly to-do lists! I am also going to assign myself an accountability buddy to help me stay on track and to prompt me in to taking time out to do the little things.
Thank you, my lovely friends for your support this year. Thank you for following me on social media, for your likes and comments. Thank you for reading my blog, for making my patterns and for supporting my little shop. I honestly feel so blessed to have built such a generous and friendly community of crafters around me. I have made many wonderful friends through Slow Stitching that have enriched my life with joy.
I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy and Healthy New Year.
I am not sure what 2021 will bring, but I welcome the New Year in with an open heart, with hope and with my light shining bright.
Miss Leela xx