How to Plan Your Creative Projects for the Entire Year

It’s time to plan out my creative projects for the next year. This time, I decided to share how I plan my projects for an entire year. You will be amazed how much you can accomplish with a bit of organization early in the year! This is a sponsored post. Any opinions given are completely my own.

How to Plan Creative Projects for an Entire Year|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com
Quilters Planner and Magazine

Creativity Requires Planning

Blogging as a creative person requires planning to accomplish projects. I tend to start things and not finish, buy too many supplies that I never use, or have a great idea that gets forgotten in the chaos. That’s how creativity works, we are not an organized lot.

However, I have learned that if I spend a bit of time planning I can accomplish so much more! By using a special creative calendar everything comes together in one spot!

After searching the internet extensively for a suitable planner, I came across the Quilter’s Planner. It has exactly what I was looking for: Inspirational photos and projects, areas for sketching, keeping swatches, spiral bound and compact in size. I am so excited to start using it!

Quilters Planner inspirational inside|Designers Sweet Spot|designerssweetspot.com
Quilters Planner inside cover comes with beautiful quotes and project ideas.

The pages of the planner are bound with a spiral binding. This makes it easy to flip to the current month. On each monthly tab is an inspirational quote and beautiful project. I spend a couple of hours reading through all the projects in the free magazine. Love them all! I chose a few from the magazine to put on my calendar to work on.

Quilt sketches in planner|Designers Sweet Spot|designerssweetspot.com

Creative Project Resources

Towards the back of the planner are the resource pages. There are spots for each project where you can save patterns, sketch, and make cutting notes. This is great for me since I usually jot things down on little scraps of paper that get lost. Having it all together will make things much easier to accomplish!

Swatch pages|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

Adding swatches to the book is a great way to know what you have in your fabric stash. I plan to take this book shopping with me when looking for fabrics, that way I know what I have and can match colors/prints without guessing.

I am terrible at guessing!

Quilt Planner Magazine|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

The free Quilter’s Planner magazine comes with the planner and has lots of great projects. If you are a beginning quilter, there are small projects too that will get you inspired to do more. I love mixing small projects and large ones during the year.

Here’s how you can maximize your creative productivity during the year.

5 Ways to Increase Your Creative Productivity

  1. Plan your projects for the entire year at one time. This keeps you from getting off track of your goal and will allow you to get more done. It will also save you money!
  2. Keep sketches and swatches in the calendar book. Most of the time we don’t get things done because we forget what we were doing or can’t find our notes. Keeping it all together will make a world of difference!
  3. Spread out large projects.  I plan one large project (such as a queen size quilt) over a two month time frame. Sometimes I can plan one a month, but I get frustrated if I don’t get it done in time. It’s better to plan extra time to finish it, then you can add an additional project if it’s completed before your deadline. My goal this year is to sew 6 quilts, one every two months.
  4. Alternate large project with small ones. Small projects that are easy to accomplish are great for a sewing on a single weekend or making for gifts. I plan these projects in-between the large ones to give myself a mental break. This is especially important when a large project takes longer than I had anticipated to finish. It keeps me motivated and makes me feel good to accomplish something.
  5. Plan your gift giving early in the year. Making gifts to give is a wonderful thing. However, starting them two weeks before the event is very stressful and can make you miserable. Plan your gifts ahead with a set budget and time frame so it doesn’t become an overwhelming task.

Thanks to the Quilter’s Planner for sponsoring this post!

Order your Quilter’s Planner here through my affiliate link. Start planning today!

 

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Be sure to check out these other creative ideas:

7 Easy Beginner Sewing Projects

DIY Holiday Doll Clothes Banner

How to Make Budget Curtains for Any Room

How to Make a Dresden Plate Pillow

Sew Yourself a Stunning Japanese Knot Bag

Inspirational Books to Read in 2018

I am always looking for good things to read. This list is short but these books have been the cornerstone of my faith and purpose this year. I hope you will  be inspired try a couple of them! This post contains affiliate links. I will receive a small commission from your purchase at no additional charge to you.

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The book that has had the biggest impact on me this year is Called to Create. Jordan Raynor shows you how your faith in God can be a huge part of your businesses success. I devoured this book in just a few days, it’s a must read for anyone that runs a Christian business.

Buy through my Affiliate Link here.

 

Inspirational Books|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

This book makes you want to take the world by storm. Highly regarded author uses the visual image of the lion to make you inspired to want more!

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Daily devotions are so important for keeping my thoughts on the right track. This book is perfect for short devotions that require you to be still. For some of us, that is the biggest challenge we face every day.

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Our church recently did a study on this book. The focus on living is not on perfection or business, but enjoying life as it is one breath at a time. No more worries to work faster, push harder and produce more. This year more than ever I have felt overwhelmed and exhausted trying to work to produce all the time. Rest, read and be inspired!

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Inspiration Books for 2018|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

This book is short, but holds so much truth! The strategies Robert J. Morgan shares for dealing with difficult times are practical and so easy to apply.  We have all dealt with struggle, and if you aren’t doing so right now, you will in the future. The Rea Sea Rules will give you all the skills you need to thrive in your struggle.

Buy through my affiliate link here.

 

Inspiration Books for 2018|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

If you listen to Christian radio, you’ve heard the song ‘Blessings’ by Laura Story. This book shares her heart behind the song. It is a riveting story of loss, life, and the hope we have because of Christ. I couldn’t put this one down and I now have a greater appreciation for her music as well!

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Inspiration Books for 2018|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

My Utmost for His Highest is another classic daily devotional. I’ve read through this book multiple times, and always learn something new.

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Inspirational Books to Read in 2018|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

This book has actually been on my shelf for years, but never got read. I decided to pick it up a few months and I’m so glad I did.  In Rescuing Ambition, Dave Harvey gives great advice on how to use our ambition for good! This is a must read for anyone, but especially those embarking on their own business venture.

Buy through my affiliate link here.

Reading can be such an escape from real life while also encouraging you in your faith. What are some of your favorite books from this past year? Do you have any books on your list for 2018? I’d love to hear your recommendations! 

 

Inspirational Articles

Here are some other articles to inspire you:

5 Ways to Save Big Money on Your Water Bill

How to Make a Fleece Lounging Gown

DIY Wooden Angel Wings

Vintage Wash Nightstand Transformation

 

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Inspirational Books to Read in 2018|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

 

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New Year’s Eve Party Inspiration

New Year’s Eve is about celebrating the year that has passed, and looking forward to the year to come. Here are a few great ways to make your New Year’s Eve party one to remember.

New Year's Eve Party Inspiration|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

Just because you want to keep things simple, doesn’t mean you should get rid of all the fun little details. Pretty My Party shares some fun details (plus a free printable)!

New Year's Eve Party Inspiration|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

You won’t want to miss these “Kiss Me Kits” Shaken Together Life put together! They are such a cute idea as party favors, of just for you and your honey.

New Year's Eve Party Inspiration|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

No party is complete without food. AKA Design shares some great appetizers to make your party good a hit.

New Year's Eve Party Inspiration|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

This New Year’s Eve mocktail will please both the young and the old. Check out Kleinworth & Co. for this recipe and many others!
New Year's Eve Party Inspiration|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.comNew Year’s Eve is the perfect time to write down those resolutions. Create a space for your party guests to list theirs. Lia Griffith shares how she created these cute cards over on her blog.New Year's Eve Party Inspiration|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

Nothing says New Year’s like champagne! These pretty cake balls from Sugar & Soul are sure to be a hit.

New Year's Eve Party Inspiration|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

Head over to Domestically Blissful to see this match sign in action! This is something I never would’ve thought of.

New Year's Eve Party Inspiration|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

Celebrating New Year’s with kids can be so much fun. Here’s a great way to get them involved in the countdown! The Suburban Mom shares her tips on how to make this successful over on her blog.

New Year's Eve Party Inspiration|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

The Blue Eyed Dove shares all her fun tips on how to create a festive atmosphere. Head over to her blog for all the New Year’s Eve inspiration you need.

New Year's Eve Party Inspiration|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

I love these cute fortune cookies made by Happiness is Homemade. They would make excellent party favors, but would also look so pretty displayed on a platter at your desert table.

 

Whether you’re planning a huge party or a quiet night at home. We hope these fun ideas will help you welcome in the New Year! 

 

More Inspiration

Looking for more inspiration? Check out these posts!

5 Easy Ways to Save Big Money on Your Water Bill

How to Make a Fleece Lounging Gown

10 Dining Room Transformations

DIY Wooden Angel Wings

 

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New Year's Eve Party Inspiration|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

15 Christmas DIY Gift Wrap Ideas

I don’t know about you, but I love wrapping gifts. Maybe it’s my creative side. I enjoy making the packages look pretty under the tree. Here are a few DIY gift wrap ideas to make your wrapping this year a breeze. 

15 Christmas DIY Gift Wrap Ideas|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

This might be the easiest idea in this article! Grab a paper sack, a few stamps, and fresh eucalyptus and you’ll be all set. (Most grocery stores carry fresh eucalyptus in their floral departments.) The Beauty Dojo shares how to make these simple gift bags, perfect for oddly shaped presents.

15 Christmas DIY Gift Wrap Ideas|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

A few years ago, I was attempting to be as thrifty as possible over Christmas. I created these cute reusable bags as a way to wrap gifts! You won’t want to miss this super easy  over on Designers Sweet Spot. Bonus: you can use these bags again next year!

15 Christmas DIY Gift Wrap Ideas|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

If you have kids that want to get involved in the wrapping, this could be a fun project! My Sweet Things decided on a Christmas tree design, but the possibilities for this are really endless.

15 Christmas DIY Gift Wrap Ideas|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

Boxwood Avenue shares an excellent tutorial on how to make this cute Christmas light strand to dress up your packages.

15 Christmas DIY Gift Wrap Ideas|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

This is another great use for Washi tape. I love this idea from Almost Makes Perfect because it doesn’t require you to purchase anything specifically for your Christmas wrapping, but still looks festive!

15 Christmas DIY Gift Wrap Ideas|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

Check out this DIY over on 2 Bees in a Pod to see how thrifted shirts are used to create gift wrap.

 

15 Christmas DIY Gift Wrap Ideas|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

Here’s another thrift store DIY. Sadie Seasongoods used what others might consider trash (and some consider treasure) to wrap her gifts. Why haven’t I thought of this idea before?

15 Christmas DIY Gift Wrap Ideas|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

If you’re really wanting to try something new this year, why not tie dye your gift wrap? Babble Dabble Do shares a very detailed tutorial on how to achieve the perfect tie dye look each time.

15 Christmas DIY Gift Wrap Ideas|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

I don’t know anyone who doesn’t love old photos. Here’s a cute way to use them in your wrapping! The presents under Julie Blanner’s tree are beautiful, you won’t want to miss them.

15 Christmas DIY Gift Wrap Ideas|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

If you’re wanting to save money by using craft paper but still looking for some excitement, look no further! This is such an easy DIY and will cost less than the Starbucks you drank this morning. Shaken Together Life shares all the details over on her blog.

15 Christmas DIY Gift Wrap Ideas|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

Chelsea Project shares some fun updates to the classic “brown paper packages tied up with string”.

15 Christmas DIY Gift Wrap Ideas|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

We love these fun gift bags from  Mod Podge Rocks. They remind me of Christmas lights on a dark December night. Sometimes the most festive things aren’t the typical Christmas red and green.

15 Christmas DIY Gift Wrap Ideas|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

The Graphics Fairy shares some great ideas on how to create your own unique wrapping paper this year!15 Christmas DIY Gift Wrap Ideas|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

Here is another project that the kids could help you with! Southern State of Mind uses pom-poms to create this fun, festive paper.

15 Christmas DIY Gift Wrap Ideas|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

These pretty gift tags from Today’s Creative Life add so much to a simple package! Less is more sometimes.

 

After so much inspiration, I’m ready to head to the store to get supplies to wrap my own gifts! Now the tricky part will be deciding on which idea to use. 

 

Needing some more festive ideas? Check out these other Christmasy posts:

Beautiful Christmas Tablescapes

12 Easy DIY Christmas Stockings

Festive Cocktails for Holiday Parties

DIY Decorative Holiday Pillow Roundup

Spiced Hot Apple Cider

 

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15 Christmas DIY Gift Wrap Ideas|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

Beautiful Christmas Tablescapes

Decorating for Christmas is so much fun! However, it’s tempting to resort to your traditional routine. One way to mix up your holiday decor this season is with a beautiful Christmas tablescape. Here are a few of our favorites from around the web.  Enjoy! 

There’s something special about a beautiful table that sets the mood for the season! I am always amazed at the creativity behind so many holiday tablescapes. We hope this roundup has given you the inspiration to create something new and exciting with your Christmas decor. Finally, remember that there’s no “right way” to decorate. You’re free to create something that truly makes YOU smile.

Christmas Inspiration

If you’re still looking for more noteworthy Christmas inspiration, check out these other articles:

12 Easy DIY Christmas Stockings

Festive Cocktails for Holiday Parties

DIY Decorative Holiday Pillows

Spiced Hot Apple Cider

 

Remember to pin this post for later! 

Beautiful Christmas Tablescapes|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

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