Tuesday, January 19, 2016

18 Days In and 2016 Is Already a Big Year

I'm calling it now. 2016 is the Year of Steven. Any Steven. If your name is Steven, you're golden. (I might be tempted to allow "Stephen", too, but c'mon, you already get a "ph" so get your own year.)

I started 2016 in Las Vegas. I know. Crazy. It's not really the kind of city you think of when you think of me (if you think of me). I'm much more quiet beachside town, maybe on the coast of Maine or England. Actually, quiet beachside town in Maine is one of my goals. That's another story.

Las Vegas is big and bright and overwhelming and lots of brown and tan and .... I'm stopping there. If you give me a glass of wine or a beer, I'll definitely go into what I think of Las Vegas. But there was one major awesome thing in Las Vegas: Sin City Knit Shop. Oh man, that place is awesome. The owner, Debbi, was so welcoming and friendly. And excited to have a "designer" in her shop. (I use quotation marks because that's something I'm working on this year: seeing myself as a real designer.)

I picked up some great yarns there, but of course, no pictures. It's in a bag somewhere in my apartment. I'm such a bad knitter that I buy yarn I love and then stash it away and forget about it. Debbie surprised me on our 3rd trip (yes, we went to the yarn store three times at least, maybe more) with a request to design something for her store for a project they're putting together. I came home with some really amazing yarn from Downtown DyeWorks, a Las Vegas local dyer. It's dark and mysterious with a little sparkle of gold. Very different from what I usually knit with but, hey, you do you, Steven.

I received a very exciting email while I was sitting at a coffee shop in Las Vegas in response to a contest I entered. Hopefully I'll be able to give you even more exciting news about it shortly. I used a new product and designed a project and I'm one of 10 finalists for the grand prize. It was a really interesting design challenge and I enjoyed the process. I'll post about it when I hear the final results (even if I'm not the winner!).

Since 2016 is still so young, I feel like I still have time to set goals for the year. (You're welcome to give me a swift kick in the butt if I still feel like that in May.) I do have some things I'd like to try, though, some superficial goals:
  • I want to submit more designs to third-party publishers -- magazines, books, yarn companies, etc. I have to start believing in myself more and just rip that band aid off. The answer will always be no if I don't ask the question. 
  • I want to take my design life more seriously as a job. I want to set up my home studio to be more conducive to being productive and working. I already cancelled cable television so there really is no excuse to not use my office. (The old excuse being "I can't watch television in there.") I can watch YouTube and Netflix anywhere.
  • I want to meet new people and make new connections. I want this to be in person or online. I want to use Twitter and Facebook and Tumblr and Ello (you should try it, it's awesome) to make new friends and collaborate with people.
  • I want to do something to give back, or pay it forward, or something like that. Charity. I'm not sure if this is a big project I put together to collect knitwear or money or what. I'm still thinking about it.
That's it. Four things. I think that's a good basic broad list of ideas. Now I should sit down and make actual goals.

I'll do that tomorrow. Right now, I want to keep knitting this new hat.