On the 1st of March I officially launched as a "professional" designer. I can't bring myself to get rid of the inverted commas yet, even though I really am doing everything I can to approach this in a professional manner. I think it's because I still feel there is so. much. to learn.
Learning is a good thing, of course, and in my opinion even the most professionally professional "experts" (maybe I just like inverted commas, actually) should have to continuously work on honing their skills. But for me, right now, everything about this business is still new.
The steepest learning curve has been detaching "Maker Me" from "Creator Me" (whaddaya know, I do like inverted commas). Maker Me is very reactive to her surroundings, the seasons, and what happens to be in stock at the local yarn shop. Maker Me will fall head over heels in love with a particular colour or yarn, and Buy before she Engages Brain. That's why I end up furiously making gloves and hats for the entire family the week before a cold snap is forecast, and why even big blanket projects meander along a completely random path.
None of that is remotely professional, and doesn't Creator Me half know about it. Creator me wants to work with magazines and release patterns in good time so that other people don't end up doing the hat scramble. Creator me makes mood boards, pays attentions to trends, and thinks about what other people will like. Creator Me is, admittedly, finding swatching with wintry woollens on a sunny day in June very weird.
Despite their seeming incompatibility, I know that it is Maker Me who gave rise to Creator Me, really: in the middle of churning out granny squares I realised I was also coming up with entirely new ones, and that it might be a good idea to share them. Maker Me is the one who took the leap, Creator Me is trying to keep up after a phenomenal response.
The challenge for me, then, lies in keeping both Mes happy. My brain is raring to work out ALL THE IDEAS, but at the end of a long day my hands just want something mindlessly repetitive. My family still needs the hats, but I guess that come winter I'll be thinking about pretty cottons and pastels.
It's all part of the process really, isn't it? I can neither stop making nor stop creating, so I have to find a compromise that works for me. So far I've turned to lots of To-Do lists: for Brain-ON daytime crochet, for Brain-OFF evening and weekends, for everything else ever.
It all feels a bit schizophrenic sometimes - on the same day I could be rummaging through piles of moody, dark wool as well as putting the finishing touching to a zesty mid-season top.
But I'm realising there is a time for soothing swatches, and another for crunching stitch numbers. My pattern release schedule is still all over the shop, but as I said: I'm learning. Long may it continue.
Do you have a Maker Me and a Creator Me? Do you ever find your makes are out of step with what is going on around you? How do you solve that (or do you just not worry about it)? I'd love to know!