Friday 13 February 2015

2014: A Year of Making & Doing, part 1

Almost every year since I started my blog (2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, & 2008) I've done an end of year round-up, looking back at what I've been making and the ups and downs of the year. I'm never sure if anyone other than me is interested in these posts but I love them. It's great to get an overview of how my year has gone and to see just how much craftiness I've squeezed into 12 months - I am always pleasantly surprised by this!

However, I just didn't feel like doing one when the end of 2014 rolled round. "Who cares?" I thought. "They're such a faff! And no-one else is interested in reading them anyway! Why bother?" (I may have been feeling a bit burnt out at the end of December, can you tell?) So, I didn't do a year-in-review... but as the weeks have gone by I've started to regret not taking the time to pause and look back at what I'd got up to in the past year before I made a start on the new one.

So, better late than never, I am finally looking back on 2014! :)

In January I was busy with paperwork for my taxes (yawn) and sketching new things to make over the coming months (yay!). I finally finished my "stop faffing about and just get on with it" sampler many months after designing it (yes, I know, I know) and shared a tutorial for making spring leaf brooches. I also celebrated my seven year blogging anniversary, reached the halfway point in my Less 365 Project and had a tutorial published in Crafty Magazine

I also blogged about visits to Henley on Thames, the Serpentine Sackler Gallery & the Wallace Collection, the Guildhall Art Gallery & the Clockmakers Museum, and the British Library.

In February I was still busy behind the scenes, this time working on project proposals, new tutorials and book reviews. I started a Guest Post series with lots of lovely bloggers sharing tutorials and other fab posts, chopped up an old project to make stripey bunting, felt guilty about my half-finished quilt, shared a tutorial for making patchwork cards and finally joined Pinterest.

I also shared photos from my visits to the Charles Dickens Museum, the Foundling Museum & the Museum of London, Spitalfields Market & the Geffrye Museum, Sir John Soane's Museum, the Hunterian Museum,  & Two Temple Place, and a whole bunch of fancy shops and galleries in Mayfair.

In March I had lots of deadlines, leading to some late nights sitting up sewing and a very messy studio! I made lots of pompoms, saw a double rainbow on a day when I was working on a rainbow-themed project (such a nice coincidence) and bought a compass (I've used this so much since that I'm not sure how I coped without it!).

I blogged about some of the tools and materials I'd been using lately, the different steps I go through when designing projects for books and magazines, and a couple of published projects: my first tutorial for docrafts Creativity Magazine and a couple of designs in Mollie Makes Weddings.

I also wrote about a Nice Day Out exploring some of Reading's museums, and a trip to Bristol and Weston-Super-Mare.

In April I decorated a couple of CelEGGbrity eggs for Tesco Living (definitely one of my quirkier commissions!), did some rainbow stitching, blogged about how my patchwork quilt was "almost finished" (hahaha, so foolish - I don't think I have worked on it once since?) and shared a tutorial for making large felt flower brooches.

I also turned a work trip (hand-delivering a finished project so I could meet my deadline!) into a fun day out in Bath, went to the Country Living Spring Fair, Regents Park & the Jewish Museum, explored Kensington visiting Kensington Palace, Holland Park & the Leighton House Museum and had a short holiday in Seville, which I still haven't blogged about yet! (Tsk, tsk).


In May I spotted my work featured in two magazines and got hold of a copy of the Dutch edition of my first book, Super-Cute Felt. I made lots of felt flower cards, started work on some new tutorials, bought some yummy yarn to knit blanket squares, and made a mess doing some creative brainstorming.

I got lots of projects out of my brain and made a start turning them into felt-y reality, including a tutorial for a Make All The Things cushion. I blogged about the coffee cosy and brooch I'd made for Creativity Magazine and the five "rainy day" kids craft projects I'd designed for Tesco Living, and shared a free floral embroidery pattern as part of the Flower-themed Crafty Tutorial Link-Up I'd organised with a bunch of other bloggers.

I also wrote about falling behind with my Less 365 Project, about my trip to Manchester (parts one, two and three) and about visiting the Dulwich Picture Gallery & the Horniman Museum, the Fashion & Textile Museum and Borough Market and Piccadilly, Covent Garden & the Estorick Collection.

Then in June I turned 32, was interviewed about how I blog, started making sky pompoms, and shared tutorials for making butterfly cards, butterfly lavender sachets and fun cross stitch brooches. I blogged about three books featuring my projects and five "crafty things to do when the football is on" that I'd designed for Tesco Living, and spotted a couple of my projects in Made in Felt #2 and another in Reloved Magazine.

I started some personal stitching projects, embroidering some vintage patterns and stitching a design from Stitch & Sew Home... and shared photos of the back of my work. I was also totally thrilled to share the news that I'd designed a project for Mollie Makes, which made it onto the cover of the magazine! It was so nice seeing the magazine on the shelf in assorted newsagents and to see peoples photos of it popping up on Instagram.

I also blogged about the weirdness of getting 58 million views on Google Plus (now over 76 million!), my return visit to Kensington Palace, trips to Birmingham and Stratford-Upon-Avon and my evening at the Make Escape's awesome Makerversary (which later appeared on London Live!)

Hope you've enjoyed looking back at these months with me :)

UPDATE: Part 2 (July-December) can be found here.


Ariadne said...

Yes I enjoyed that!And since you haven't yet blogged about Seville that gives me something new to look forward to in your blog and it also makes me feel better for not having finished my USA trip that took place in July 14 in my blog yet!AriadnefromGreece!

Heather Leavers said...

76 million is just impossible to get my head around - I mean, we all love your work of course, but are there even that many people in the world? (It's been a while since my maths A level...)

Lynn Holland said...

I'm so glad you do all that you do Laura, you are so inspirational.
I've just rejigged my blog and introduced links to blogs I don't want to miss out on. It's great to see your posts popping up on my blog
Lynn 😄

Unknown said...

I love reading these sort of posts! What an amazing year and congrats on the 76 million!! I love your blog - it's so inspiring! X

Bugs and Fishes said...

Thanks for the comments everyone!

Ariadne - ah, I'm glad it's not just me who has trip photos they've not yet blogged :)

Heather - if you click the link you'll see it's not 76 people visiting my profile, the numbers are being counted in a very weird way

Lynn - Thank you for your kind words and for linking to my blog! It's much appreciated :)

Hannah - Cheers!

Right, now I need to actually get round to writing part two of this :D