This is my favourite time of year. Lots of quiet downtime, lots of reading and planning and daydreaming. I made some mistakes in my non-quilting life last year that led to some major burnout and life imbalance, mistakes I don’t intend to repeat this year.

Purl Soho Zippered PouchWhen it comes to sewing and crafting, this translates into two basic rules I’m going to live by:

1. Keep the list of projects small and flexible.

I can always add things if I find myself suddenly flush with time (or even if I simply want to indulge a whim). And maybe it’s because I am in the throes of post-Christmas gifts-are-done freedom, but the list is mostly personal projects right now:

  • Modern HST Sampler QAL, by Blossom Heart Quilts
  • Farmer’s Wife quilt, all in orange
  • Road Trip Cases by Anna Graham (one for me and one for my niece)
  • Mini Swoon, all in Meadow (note that this was once going to be a full-sized Swoon … scaling back!)
  • A Fen Shirt, by Fancy Tiger Crafts
  • A complete blouse from Boundless Style, by Kristiann Boos
  • A quilt based on a block of my own design

2. No stash remorse.

I am not going to beat myself up for having and building a stash. Period. I mean I’m not a Rockefelller, so it can never really get too out of control, but I’ve come to realize that probably the single thing I love most about sewing is the ability to “just make something,” something that didn’t exist before, at the drop of a hat. And to do this you need supplies, and a stash. So when you decide to finally try out the zipper foot on your Bernina 350 PE (my husband got me this for a milestone birthday and it was one of the highlights of 2015), on New Years Eve, you can. Carolyn Friedlander layer cake that I had no plans for? Check. Random assortment of zippers? Got it. Make something, learn something, done. That’s contentment for me, and that’s what I’m going for this year, before anything else.

Zippered pouch pattern by Purl SohoZippered pouch pattern by Purl Soho. Botanics fabric by Carolyn Friedlander.