2017: Goal Setting, Outlooks and Aspirations

While this last year I was on a quest of self-discovery, introspection and meaningful connections, I expect 2017 will be filled with more concrete and ‘fixed’ ambitions. Apparently, making your goals public holds you more accountable and increases your chances of actually following through with them.

So without further ado, here are just a few of the things I hope to accomplish this year …

1. Sew my own wardrobe

I love knitting, and would love to knit myself a full wardrobe, but let’s face it, knitting takes time. Not only that, the cost of high quality wool can be extremely high. Which is why, two years ago, I bought myself a sewing machine. And a few sewing books (essential ones, of course!). Except that, although lovely to look at, I have yet to sew a single thing! Unless you count a huge fail when I tried to design my own P.J.’s by cutting around a pair of my old P.J.’s and I could barely fit them on because they were way too small. Next time, I’ll be using a pattern.

2017 Goal Setting by Wooly Ventures
My collection of sewing books that I have yet to actually use …

There are a couple of knitting blogs out there that also blog about sewing, such as Fringe Association and Very Shannon. Each of them provide such beautiful and easy options to sew things all by yourself and thereby avoid supporting mass consumerism, fast-fashion and waste, it’s hard to think of reasons not to get into sewing! Okay, so maybe there are a couple of reasons I can think of. Time. And Money. And hours of frustration when finding out that you just sewed up a super expensive silk blouse that doesn’t even fit right. But even still, as I discovered after completing my first full handknit sweater, making your own clothes provides such an amazing and incredible feeling of self-worth that it outweighs all the cons. It might take a bit of practice and perseverance to get there, but once you’re there, that feeling is golden. Trust me. 🙂

2017 Goal Setting by Wooly Ventures
Burda Style. The ultimate resource for finding great sewing patterns online.

Another sewing blog that I love to follow is Thread Theory. The creator, Morgan, first started by designing mainly menswear, but lately she seems to have created a pattern or two for her female followers! I am in love with her new release, the Lazo trousers. I can’t wait until I get to the level that sewing these will be a breeze!

2. Cables, cables, cables!

One of the things I love the most about knitting is that I never stop learning. There are so many creative ways to incorporate texture, colour and patterns that it can be mind boggling when you start to design. One of my major knitting goals this year is to design more, and incorporate interesting and unique elements into each and every design.

There is so much variety and possibilities in using cables, that I decided to spoil myself with a book that I had had my eye on for a while, Norah Gaughan’s Knitted Cable Sourcebook.

Norah Gaughan's Knitted Cable Sourcebook
So many ideas, so little time …

3. Knit a Brioche Shawl

Brioche is a whole other game, and a technique that I have a lot to learn from! I’ve enrolled in Nancy Marchant’s Explorations in Brioche Knitting* on Craftsy in order to finally be able to knit patterns that I’ve been dreaming about for a long, long time.

I’ve also been aching to learn to knit a shawl for the longest time! I started out with trying Aroha Knits #5days5shawls challenge, but got caught up with travel and didn’t make it through. So I’m going to start again, hopefully with better luck this time. 🙂

The next pattern I’ll likely knit will be the Ramble Shawl by Andrea Mowry (as I promised to knit it for my sister as an extra-late Christmas gift), but I’m also in love with Stephen West’s and Knitgraffiti’s brioche shawl designs as well.

4. Dye My Own Wool

On a rather spur-of-the-moment purchase, I decided to join Custom Woolen Mill’s Natural Dye Club 2017. Included in my kit were two undyed skeins of local wool, a few seeds of marigold, and a pattern for a pair of fingerless mittens. Ever since I took a class on natural dyes and weaving in Laos, I’ve been dyeing (haha) to try it for myself! The Club officially starts in March (it’s much too cold in Canada to grow anything now, anyways).

5. Be Happy

Finally, and most importantly, this year I want to focus on happiness. There are a great number of things in life that make me ridiculously happy. Things such as:

  • Writing;
  • Being around positive people;
  • The view from the top of a mountain (and the hike that goes with it!)
  • Chopping up vegetables into really small pieces;
  • Discreetly sipping on tea while people-watching in hipster cafés;
  • Knitting (well, obviously)
  • …And so on

The list continues, but forcing myself to reflect on the many things (and people!) in life that I am grateful for is my secret to a successful 2017.

What are your secrets to having a successful 2017? I promise I won’t tell! 😉 

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