I imagine that as a maker, you’re a bit like me; full of more dreams than time to bring them all to life.

I’m never short of new adventures to try and projects to make, and it feels like most of my ideas bubble up from somewhere inside of me, but I suspect that’s only partly true. As a visual person, and a super-curious one to boot, my eye is always drawn to new, shiny, tantalising things and I have a feeling that instead of being completely inventive and original, my brain sifts through everything that catches my eye, spins them together and throws them out again, albeit in a new form, with a “me” vibe.

Rather a few shiny new things have caught my eye in the last few weeks and thought I’d share them with you. Maybe they’ll get your imagination spinning too.

IN MY INBOX

Years ago I thoroughly enjoyed Kat’s musings on her blog Slugs on the Refrigerator. She wrote about all sorts of things including crochet, life, and art and I really enjoyed clicking on the varied and interesting links she shared.

Over the years Kat’s life and business have evolved and now she lives at Gartur Stitch Farm, runs online classes and farm tours, and her newsletter continues to be both a beautiful and delightful letter in my inbox.

I’m still falling down fascinating rabbit-holes when I click the things she links to and I often dream of turning our rural property into a fully-fledged homestead, with ducks, goats, and cheese-making, just like Kat.

ON MY CRAFT BOOKSHELF

I have a plethora of wonderful books on my shelves including stitch dictionaries and technique guides, and I’m endlessly inspired flicking through the pages of beautiful pattern books, drinking in the styling, design shapes, and textures.

Some of my favourites at the moment are by Bristol Ivy, Anna Maltz, and Helga Isager.

ON MY BEDSIDE TABLE

I enjoy Alexa Chung; both her style and her fun video podcasts, and recently I sent my friend Marie (we make Pacifico Knits together) this video about French Women getting older. The bit about channeling Keith Richards made us both laugh.

A day or so later Marie was browsing a book shop and this book caught her eye. Turns out, one of the authors is Caroline De Maigret, the same gorgeous French woman from the video (hello universe!). She bought copies for both of us, and it’s turned out to be laugh-out-loud funny, and ridiculously spot-on in many places.

IN MY EARS

I’m an avid podcast listener and subscribe to a wide range of podcasts.

At the moment as I work away at my skirt, seam by seam, I’m loving the fresh chatter of Helen and Caroline, the two women that record Love to Sew.

ON THE CATWALK

I tend to make and wear what I love and am mostly totally out of touch with what happens in real life when it comes to fashion. But I’m intrigued by the designers that create it. Here in New Zealand, we have a vibrant fashion design scene that’s fresh, edgy and really fun.

Karen Walker was a couple of years ahead of me at High School and her success and brand fascinate me. She’s the designer I check in with most often to see what she’s up to. I’m loving the flowing fullness of the sleeves and legs in her new collection.

IN MY STASH

It’s summery here In New Zealand, and I’m feeling all the feels for linen at the moment. I’ve just finished knitting a cute linen tank top in stunning Quince & Co. Sparrow, and organic linen fingering yarn. It’s the second linen/linen blend garments I’ve had on my needles already this year. I’ve also knitted a new sweatshirt design in Blacker Lyonesse fingering. (Both patterns will be out later this year). Lyonesse and Sparrow are gorgeous yarns, and I and was pleasantly surprised at how easy they were on my hands. Stiffer yarns used to make my hands ache, but I haven’t had any twinges using either of these, and I’m looking forward to adding more yarns including linen into my stash.

ONLINE

This month I stumbled across a course that I’ve loved and I think will make a big difference to my life. Kate Northrup has launched Make Time for Business which focusses on using monthly cycles (menstrual or the moon) to guide what work we dive into and when to make the most of our natural energy cycles.

I’ve noticed big shifts in my energy levels in peri-menopause. The highs seem higher and the lows … well, I’m feeling mental and physical tiredness that I’ve not felt before. I’ve had several challenging years where I’ve felt like my whole brain and body has rewired, and the idea of working with, not in spite of how I’m feeling energetically, feels liberating. I can also see that thinking about my energy cycles may be useful when it comes to things I’m knitting, sewing and making too. I know that I regularly have “cast-on-itis” but can’t seem to finish anything, and also phases where I’m intent on finishing (or ripping out!) all my WIP’s. I suspect those moods are cyclic.

I managed to grab a free seat in the course when it first launched, but there’s a price tag attached to it now (it’s actually on sale for a discount as I write this) and if you’re not up to splashing out right now, you might enjoy exploring some less expensive and free options to find out more. I bought the accompanying digital planner, which comes with a 30-minute video explaining how to implement it, and Kate has a regular podcast that goes into more detail. Those would be good places to start.

If you enjoying hearing what inspires me and want to hear me chat about the projects on my needles and my sewing machine, head over to the Truly Myrtle Knit and Chat Hangout on Facebook and join my live, weekly, video podcast.

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