Friday, January 1, 2016
Happy New Year! The Annual Reckoning
Postmarked Wausau, Wisconsin, Dec. 29, 1923, sent to Nora Buttke in Embden, ND. Message: "Dear Cousin, How are you all this winter we are fine we just came back from Milwaukee two weeks ago. Had a good time. Hope Santy was good to you. Goodbye from Herman and Frances." [In 1996 I bought a shoebox of postcards at a Buttke descendant's garage sale in Fargo. Some cards had been used, but many had not. They continue to come in handy.]
Early in 1998 I was preparing to move from North Dakota to Illinois. I realized I had almost as many boxes of fabric as boxes of books. I knew that writing down anything (money spent, food eaten, books read) made me more intentional. And so, for 18 years, I've tracked my quiltmaking activity -- primarily in terms of fabric acquired and used, but also projects completed. My criteria are idiosyncratic. I do not keep track of notions, tools, batting, books, or subscriptions. I don't count vintage linens (though I do count vintage yardage). You may think the calculations are terribly tedious but I've been doing it so long that it is routine.
Though I used two yards less in 2015 than 2014, I acquired much less.
* I began the year with 10 flimsies. I sold 3. I finished 29. I ended the year with 23 in the box.
* I made 18 pillowcases and two quilts on commission. I sold two quilts.
* I used 111 spools of thread. [Goodwill got a box with the accumulated empty spools from 2012-2014. They'll get the 2015 collection, too.]
Vic pointed out that I must include the six weeks of sewing-in-exile while the flooring in my studio (the basement) was replaced. Read the posts from April here.
These were my 2015 goals:
* Bust the 30's stash. -- Stalled after four projects.
* Learn and practice a new technique. -- Nope.
* Make decisions about the flimsies in the box (finish or abandon). -- Sold 3, quilted many. (Also sold several sets of blocks.)
* Continue to chip away at the Deep Stash -- vintage linens and fashion fabric especially. -- Made 1 pair of pajamas.
* Sell 100 yards. -- Sold/gave away 62 yards. Make 100 Care Bags. -- Nope. Make 576 HeartStrings blocks (that's 48 blocks per month) -- Yes! Each month I used a different colorway/theme and all the blocks were made from my stash.
* Host one blog giveaway each quarter. -- Nope.
* Enjoy the journey. Yes!
My 2016 goals are very much the same:
* Learn and practice a new technique. (Bonus: use a specialty ruler.)
* Finish flimsies.
* Reduce: quilt fabric stash, books, magazines, patterns, vintage linens, fashion fabric.
* Host one blog giveaway each quarter.
* Make 100 Care Bags.
* Enjoy the journey. Yes!
I hope your own year-end review is pleasing. Here's to a piece-filled 2016!