You see, I don't want to just make stuff. I create as an outlet, to make things for other people, and ultimately, to produce items of utility and beauty. To achieve these objectives usually requires some forethought and planning. That said, it's so good to have a spontaneous project sometimes, too. 

I consistently read three creativity-focused blogs, for both insight into my crafting and for camaraderie. These particular blogs offer lots of encouragement in my "making process."

  • The Craft Sessions : good insight about the why of crafting and how to be more mindful and balanced about creativity. She discusses both the intention behind making, and she features a nice blend of sewing and knitting personal projects, frequently with tutorials or quick tricks. My favorite ongoing series on her blog is called Stash Less
  • SouleMama : Amanda writes about farm life, her family, her own crafting, and family crafting. She also includes a good number of cute farm animal pictures (of their sheep, for example!) I particularly like her seasonal intention to her crafting.
  • Fringe Association : A wonderful source of creative inspiration. Karen assembles "best of" posts with the best knitted hat patterns for gifts at Christmas time, or friendly learn-to-knit posts, or brief tutorial posts. As a fashion-forward person, she seeks out lasting trends in knitwear (and sewn clothing). She has several posts about creating a meaningful, thoughtful handmade wardrobe one piece at a time.

In the pursuit of mindfully creating, I wanted to create a list of current and upcoming creative projects, so that I can remove the jumbled to-do list from my brain and organize it in front of me:

Antarktis: a shawl using a single skein of bright blue sock yarn. I'm about 40% done, I'm guessing.

Anna Vest KAL: I knit my Lila pullover as part of a knit-a-long last year, and enjoyed it so much, I wanted to do another. Details about this KAL here.  So far, I've knit and blocked my gauge swatch. I'll be casting on soon!

A lap/twin-size quilt of undetermined pattern with these fabrics (as part of my own #stash_less challenge)

And a few others (not pictured):

  • A shawl made with lace-weight yarn I received as a gift from a friend (thanks, Matt)! I'm thinking maybe Daybreak, but the jury's still out.
  • Strathcona : put on hold. I inadvertently cast on three patterns with a (YO, k2tog) pattern repeat and I just need a break from all that repetitive lace. Plus, this is perfect for warm-weather knitting (and wearing).
  • Another sewn dress. I'm thinking either AnnieFen, or the Basics Dress. They all look so perfectly summery (and easily transitioned to cooler weather with layers). I also love the look of the Gardenia dress.

Naturally, this is a long to-make list, and I could add even more items that I want to make. We'll see how many I get to. ;) At least at this point, I've organized the loose creative ideas in my brain just a bit more. 

P.S.—I feel like I need to do a little healthy campaigning for crafting. Anyone can learn to craft. Whether you prefer knitting, sewing, or some other creative avenue, or you don't know what you prefer, try something. If you've ever wanted to start, please do. It's good for the mind and there really is a wonderful crafting community out there. Because knitting is my first love (and because people ask me all the time about good resources for people wanting to learn to knit, here is a post for those just beginning to knit).