January is already over! What did I do & work on?
It's been a busy start to the year with Two Little Kits and I'm excited to share all the updates with you! January 2023 was a productive month with the release of new patterns. I'm pleased with the response you guys gave me to my brand new merch release as it was was well-received and I'm grateful for your unwavering support.
The beginning of a new year always fills me with hope and optimism, as I'm a glutton for setting myself resolutions, starting new habits and finding a "clean slate" to work from. And what better time of year to do those sorts of things than the beginning of January?
Let's take a closer look at what I've been up to. 👇
Before the very start of the year, I went over my membership setup and knew that I wanted to fix it up so it made more sense. Apparently, my immediate 'brain dump' of information is not entirely legible to everyone 🤣. I figured that having it done for the very beginning of a year was a great time to do it!
You can get more information on the membership tiers by visiting the Membership page of my website, but these are the three options:
A Bundle of Floss
A Fistful of Floss
A Hoard of Floss
Works in Progress
Once again, I feel like I worked on more than what I actually did. I have to remind myself that my finished pieces during the same month were also WIPs..! LOL.
I picked up a new stitch-along in December that started at the beginning of the month. Each part is being released at the start of the month and has eight parts. So I feel like it will be easy enough to stay on top of each release!
I also had a big unpicking session (which as of writing, still isn't done with) but I'm glad I realised what was wrong before I had completed too much of the piece!
Have a look below at my work this month:
Let's see the WIPs:
In January, I completed two pieces (bit fewer than the previous month..!) that I would love to share with you!
Let's have a look!
Back at the end of 2022, I received a request for a stitch people wedding portrait to be completed and delivered before February and I -of course- said no problem!
My customer (if I recall correctly) was worried about how it would look with the couples' pets in it and I assured her it would make it just that much more unique and special. And I definitely stand by that, looking at how it turned out. What do you think?
Upcoming Embroidery Pattern
You guys have seen the evolution of this piece either in these blog posts or via my FlossTube over the past few months but it's finally done (and in time for "National Embroidery Month"!).
I'm planning on releasing this [currently unnamed] pattern later this month, so stay tuned by following my social media accounts!
But for now, let's check out how it looks all finished:
I told myself before the start of 2023 that I wanted to continue pushing new patterns and releases to try and hit that "once a fortnight" timeline. Now that I have three (amazing!) test stitchers, this definitely feels doable!
Now my available hours just need to keep up with my ambition! So let's see what happened in January.
Well, I managed to sneak in two new cross-stitch patterns (plus the merch release!) in the past month, thanks to when Mondays landed. And what's more, they are the first two of a new series I've been working on!
These are part of a three-pattern series I had planned, where the third will be coming on the 13th. I do, however, have plans on continuing this series past just 3 as I (personally) really like the style.
Let me know your thoughts!
As I mentioned in my last monthly wrap-up post, I released merchandise and apparel to start the new year. This was something I was very nervous about (seen via my very first 2023 FlossTube video..! 🙈) but the reception on this -as mentioned earlier- was really good!
I'll be honest: I didn't have high expectations going into listing merch & apparel. So when I received a handful of orders on the very first day, I was elated!
Since the initial release, I also brought on t-shirts in the same design (which I can honestly say, is one of my favourite tops as of writing this. It is so soft and comfortable! I also think I want another colour.) which you can see to the right of this post.
I released this design in sixteen different colour variations, as it was a test to gauge what sorts of colours would be most popular going forward with other designs. Trust me; this will not be the norm, since it was so convoluted to set up..!Get your own t-shirt!
I had some lovely things happen during January that I would really like to share with you! They're two very different kinds of "warm fuzzy", but both qualify nonetheless.
My very own Nugget
Early in the month, I was having a really rough time mentally and mentioned as such on my Instagram account. To explain: I like to be as honest as I can when it comes to depression and anxiety to help crush the stigma. I believe that others seeing that things aren't all sunshine and roses for people is OK and normal.
Anywho; shortly after making a story on my IG about how I was feeling, Deborah from Wild Rainbow Co. reached out and asked if she could send me something to cheer me up.
I immediately wanted to brush her off and not give her my shipping address, but then I realised that it's OK to let other people in. Who am I to say it's OK to be vulnerable and honest and then not let someone do something nice for me?
So I sent her my mailing address and less than a week later, I received this adorable little guy.
His name is Bruce. I think he is adorbs. You should get one too ❤️️
First branded t-shirt
Since I started my first freelance business, I've always wanted to have a t-shirt with my logo on it. I can't explain why; I guess it makes things feel more "real" to me in a way.
I never had one made up for Pixel Nourish (my web design & development freelancing venture I did before we moved to America) so I assumed I wouldn't ever really get a chance to have this happen. And therefore, the fantasy was forgotten.
I realised, based on the company I am currently doing my merch and apparel through, I could make up whatever t-shirt designs I freaking like and get it put onto a shirt. And I could order as many as I want — which in this case, was one. Perfect!
So you bet I jumped on that quickly..!
The first time I put it on I felt this silly, giddy feeling of having "made it". Whatever "it" was/is. I highly recommend it.
If you're interested in getting your own Two Little Kits t-shirt made up, let me know as I'm not listing these but can easily make you a custom order.
Stuff that's happened IRL
What happened during January? Aside from stitchy things, I did other stuff! Here are a few things that I got up to.
I had a crown planned on one of my teeth (number 32 if you're curious — yes, my wisdom tooth). This one is a special case, as I actually don't have the premolar on that side (number 30) after breaking it back in my early 20s. Long story. When it came time for me to get my wisdom teeth removed, I ended up keeping that one as it gives the remaining molar (no. 31) some stability.
The catch is, that regular molar (no. 31) already had a crown on it, too, that my current dentist put in place about 9 months ago. But it turns out, it wasn't cemented right.
So… she decided that I should get that one removed and get 2 crowns: one for my wisdom tooth and one as a replacement. Oof.
All of that to say; I spent about 6-7 hours in the dentist's chair in less than a week getting work done.
Did you know; removing an existing, "permanent" dental crown takes about 3-4 times longer than a regular tooth? Me neither. Thankfully I had my stitching on hand and my dentist (and the dental assistants) love chatting with me about my stitching between their work. 😘
Back at martial arts!
The last time I was at martial arts was the Friday before my very first foot surgery, back in the first half of September. So needless to say, I've been very nervous about going back to classes. Eager! But nervous.
After finding myself feeling less pain when I walk and for longer distances, I have been sort of "testing" what my foot (and toe itself) can handle without any shoes or socks on. So once the end of the Nov-Jan cycle at martial arts was coming to a close, I felt like I could handle returning.
But oh my gosh, was it hard. I've been incredibly still since September 12th, so I've lost the fitness I had built up.
It's really great to be back, even if I am finding myself clock-watching during classes and gleefully exiting the dojo after class. I know that the hurdles I'm vaulting over are going to do me so much good mentally and physically.
Donated blood - again!
I did it! Again! Yes — I am afraid of needles. But has that stopped me? No! I'm so proud of myself!
As stated, this isn't the first time I have donated blood. I didn't mention it in my October/November blog post from last year, but at the end of Nov, I balled up the courage and followed through with the spur-of-the-moment donation signup I completed earlier that month. And I donated blood for the very first time!
So this second donation was a big deal, mentally, for me. It proved to me that I can do scary things. I can follow through on what I sign up for regardless of the situation. Plus, having the knowledge that I could be helping someone (or some people) is awesome. Especially knowing I am a universal donor: O-, baby!
I've definitely inadvertently taken a bit of a step back from posting on social media, and it's not for the reason I would've assumed I'd do it.
It's because I've actually been using my time more effectively..! You might even be able to tell as such based solely on this post itself, and how much I've packed into the previous month.
Even despite that, my growth over the past month has continued to steadily increase, which is excellent news! At the rate I've been climbing, I am expecting to see the 5,700s of followers. I've been "stuck" in the 55/56-hundreds for quite some time now. Which isn't a bad thing. It's just nice to see that my intention to focus more on content that serves my already existing audience is acting according to my expectations.
That doesn't mean I'm not still making Reels that introduce my work to the masses. Those ones are fun to make!
And that's it!
Whoa. That was a lot. I often do wonder how many people actually read these, to be honest. I don't get many comments on my website in the first place so it's hard to gauge how many of my page views convert to full readers. So if you've gotten this far, give me a wave in the comments below!
Anyway; here's to February — the month that my mum is coming to visit!