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Celebrating Success: Reflecting on 2023 Accomplishments

2023 Year in Review for MCreativeJ

Now that the holiday market season is over, I'm taking some time to reflect on the year. When I'm planning and working away (ok, sometimes slogging through) it can be hard to look back and see the week, month, or year as a whole. Often times it's all I have in me to get through the week and make it to the next.

That's why I love the down time at the end of the year. I love using this time to reflect on the growth and challenges the year brought, plan for the next year, and focus in on what I want to accomplish.

Before I dive into the year and share my 2023 accomplishments, I wanted to say THANK YOU! Without you, this success wouldn't have been possible. Thank you for helping me continue to grow MCreativeJ to new heights and become better year after year.

2023 Accomplishments

Stockist Monster with MCreativeJ embroidery kits

283 Stockists

At the beginning of 2023 I knew I wanted to focus on getting more shops carrying MCreativeJ hand embroidery kits and patterns. Thanks to this focus there are now 283 shops carrying my work!

117 Workshops

I love sharing how to embroider. I love seeing that ah-ha moment when you learn something new or fall in love with a craft. This is why embroidery workshops are such a big part of MCreativeJ. This year I partnered with Monster, Make Apothecary, Wyldwood Creative, On the Eastside, Quiltng Mayhem, Molbaks, A Little Knitty, Maker General, Pattern Review, Volunteer Park Conservatory, Fave Crafts, Jenny Lemons, and more to host 117 in-person and virtual workshops. It's crazy to think I taught a workshop almost every 3rd day of the year! I have even more workshops planned for 2024, so be sure to join me.

Melissa standing behind her embroidery kit display at Pike Place Market

23 Craft Fairs, Markets, and Pop Ups

This year I cut back on in-person markets to focus on wholesale and workshops. I enjoy in-person events, but they're also a lot of work and can be very hit or miss. While 23 events might seem like a lot, this is only a fraction of what previous years have been. Looking toward next year, you'll still see me at some in-person markets but like this year, it'll only be a select few.

MCreativeJ embroidery kits on display

5 Trade Shows

Trade shows are markets for wholesale buyers. Because I wanted to grow my wholesale accounts this year, I attended quite a few trade shows. This meant I got to travel to Illinois, Nevada, and Ohio. I never thought I'd get to travel for work, and even though it's a little nerve wracking, I enjoy the experience. I already have a few trade shows planned for 2024, so there will be more fun travel coming up.

4 New Embroidery Kits and 3 Peel Stick and Stitch Pattern Packs

Each year I try to launch a handful of new embroidery kits and pattern packs. This year's kits included 3D Woodland, 3D Lily Pad Pond, Stumpwork Strawberries, and Cup of Cheer. And the pattern packs included Veggies, Winter Forage, and Holiday Botanicals. The kits are more advanced kits that focus on created texture and dimensional stitching. I loved exploring new techniques and plan to add even more adventurous kits in 2024. Shop MCreativeJ advanced embroidery kits and peel stick and stitch patterns.

2 Stitch Alongs

As part of the launch of two of my new kits, 3D Woodland and 3D Lily Pad Pond, I hosted 2 stitch alongs. These are where you can purchase a kit and then we stitch along together, to complete the project. The first stitch along was a live event that was hosted weekly and the second stitch along shared individual stitch videos for the different stitches used in the project. Both were a lot of fun to create and I'm thinking of hosting another stitch along in 2024.

Camp Craftaway

1 Craft Camp

My friend Sara Barnes and I hosted the second annaul Camp Craftaway. This was a weekend of crafting for adults. Think adult summer day camp where you get to try all sorts of amazing workshops taught my artists. We had 42 attendees join us for hands on classes in felting, embroidery, cyanotyping, paper marbeling, weaving, clay scuplting, and more. We're already planning for camp in 2024, so mark your calendars for August 2-4!

Hand holding the book How to Embroider Texture and Pattern

1 Book Published

This year I became an author. My book, How to Embroider Texture and Pattern, was published! I worked with Fox Chapel Publishing to turn my idea of textural landscape embroideries into a book. It was such an amazing process and it's been a joy to see my book out in the world. I actually loved this process so much, I'm working on a second book!

1 Comment

Cheryl Strong
Cheryl Strong
Dec 20, 2023

So much good stuff! Congratulations. I hope you have some downtime.

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