My top 10 2013 review

the above photo has nothing to do with this post or the weather today. I just thought it was pretty :)

I know, I know, time to move on! But stay with me, I need to do these reviews to think about where I want to go this new year. I’m just a little bit late.

2013 has been pretty awesome over here in my public art life. There have been a few blips (some kind of major) in the private life, but in general it has been a surprisingly good year. Here are my top 10 of 2013!

#1 is Teaching. I decided that 2013 was going to be the year I pushed myself out of the house and did more teaching. I threw myself into the fire at Gather Here where I was the January artist-in-residence. I taught 4 classes on 6 consecutive days. By the end of that week I felt like I’d run a marathon, exhausted but so proud of myself. I taught there again in April, then in San Francisco, at ArtRetreat in New Hampshire, and twice at the New England Quilt Museum. So far this year I am scheduled to teach the Tiny Worlds at Gather Here next weekend, The Makerie/Sweet Paul Retreat in March, and ArtRetreat in August again. I’m so excited!

#2 is Dolls. Wow- 144 dolls– The most ever! And my new line of friends at Land Of Nod. Yes, those are my cover dogs!

#3 is all the Selling. I did 3 in-person Markets in 2013- Renegade San Francisco, Renegade Chicago, and Crafty Bastards Washington, DC. My online sales are mostly through Etsy but this year I did a flash sale on One Kings Lane. Amazing- sold out in under 2 hours!

#4 is direct sales. Because I sell directly to customers, I get a lot of wonderful emails with stories and compliments. Among the best of this year- A tattooed man is hanging in the office of someone who works at the fabric manufacturer of the toile, a tiny world was part of a marriage proposal, one of the man dolls accompanied someone to their chemo treatments. I get to know that I am a special part of a lot of peoples’ gift-giving- even when they are buying that gift for themselves! Makes me happy.

#5 is Instagram. I love it. It has made me much more active about posting process photos and also posting on Facebook. Follow me if you want- I’m mimikirchner.

#6 is Patterns. I only got one new one out this year (hey- I got kinda busy!) but they continue to sell and give me a passive income which help me do this crazy doll thing that I love.

#7 is the Eyes of the Internet. I’m referring to this. The bad, sad, angry-making, frustrating thing. I strongly believe that by putting my work out for the world to see, I am safer than if I kept it under wraps and private. I will always hear from you all if someone is copying my artwork. I am so grateful. And sometimes the bad times can have a happy ending.

#8 is Putting Myself Out There. I was in Sweet Paul Magazine (here), Make Art That Sells, and where I wrote an essay for the Art Saves column. I had 2 pieces in a show of tattoo art in France. I also joined the fun with my friend Liz and was interviewed on her show, Makers in Business.

#9 is Doing the Hard Things. I leaped right out of my comfort zone and said yes to doing the Holiday window at Gather Here (still there if you are local to Cambridge, MA). I made 15 Tiny Worlds for it including some that pushed the boundaries of anything I’ve tried before. I took a weekend intensive class in Illustrator. Hopefully something sunk in and it will show up in a pattern or 2 this year. I said yes to some things this year and no to other things. Both/either can be scary.

#10 is Friends. That is you, all my blog readers. And my Crafty Biz meet-up buds who I see (at least) once a month and we talk about all the biz stuff. And Lilla, my so generous, meet for coffee and talk about the important design stuff, friend. And all the people I’ve “known” online and met in person this year- Betz, Mati, Lisa. The those that I’ve known online and in-real-life and got to see again this year- Susan, Sonya. And the friends on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Yes, a very good year. I stretched myself in good directions and feel stronger for it. Bring on 2014- I am ready!!!

8 thoughts on “My top 10 2013 review

  1. Mimi ~ I think you’ve had a spectacular year! Some of these things I knew about, some not, but reading through your post brought me back to our lunch in Chicago 5 years ago. It’s wonderful to see how you were able to actuate so many things that were just tumbling around as thoughts and dreams at the time. Very inspiring! Best wishes for a wonderful 2014!

  2. You are an inspiration! So glad to hear that you will be designing ornaments for West Elm this year…that’s a happy ending to a sad, frustrating story.

  3. Cheers and best wishes to you Mimi! So glad something great came out of something negative. Congrats! Love your work, you are a true inspiration! Hope you have a fabulous new year!

  4. Mimi- what a year for you! I’m so happy you did more teaching in 2013 since I finally had the chance to meet you in person at Sonya’s house in San Francisco. What a memorable, wonderful day that was! Keep up the awesome making in 2014!

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