I’m sorry – I didn’t mean to disappear just then.
I don’t know how it’s been for you but for me time has taken on a strange dimension and the days here have been blurring one into the next in a continuum of bread-making, bean-soaking, chicken-care, garden-tending, watching the news, navigating social media, and never managing as much knitting as I need or mean to be doing. I pulled a lot of all-nighters through May, too – which seems to be part of how I work when I have a big project on – but all-nighters do weird things to time, as well.
And now it’s June… almost July.
I’ve been thinking about loads of things this summer but what I want to tell you today is that I have finished producing my first online course: KNITSONIK Bullet Journaling. With the invaluable help and feedback of my first cohort of students, who signed up after hearing about the course through my newsletter, I’m now opening for a second round of enrolments for July, with a clearer understanding of what people gained through doing my course, and what I ought to say about it. Thank you so much to my first batch of students for sticking with it, for givine me feedback, for joining in and for taking a leap of faith with me for my very first ever online course: I appreciate you!
So, what is KNITSONIK Bullet Journaling?
In setting up this course, my aim was to try and share my own creative methods for journaling. My journals lift me up; they keep me sane; and though I don’t think I’m the world’s most efficient person by a long stretch, they do keep me somewhat on track with what I’m supposed to be doing. My journals over the last five years have also been a space for managing my mental health and disability-related admin. My bullet journal, then, is somewhere between an elaborated system of to-do lists; a manual for daily life; a scrap book and a sketchpad. It is my friend. It has everything I need in it; it helps me with day-to-day tasks; and it serves as the perfect site for me to intermix the mundane (soup recipes, scribbled notes, shopping lists) with artistic project research (quotes, drawings, designs) with the everyday care of my body (weekly injections, repeat prescription orders) and with the joy and mischief I need to keep my spark alive.
So the course is sort of about that.
It’s not focussed on upping your productivity, or on being super neat and tidy, or on having a Pinterest-worthy journal. There is no calligraphy and no clever quotes, and mess is not only allowed but actively encouraged – in part because I am incapable of being tidy in my own writing, and it is me who is modelling all the course tasks in the films. I do use templates and rulers, but only because they contain my frequently chaotic and overspilling ideas, and everything I offer or suggest comes with the repeated caveat that what works for me won’t necessarily work for you.
KNITSONIK Bullet Journaling is focussed on empowering you around using your journal as a supportive space of daily mischief, uplift, creativity and self-care; and to give you a flavour of what to expect, it DOES contain a philosophical video featuring my chickens; a super stamper with an elephant on it; and – of course, as seen further up this post – the wise, funny, foolish spirit of Monkl.
I went back and forth about whether to call this offering “bullet journaling” at all but, since what I do in my journals has completely grown out of the system put together by Ryder Carroll, and since my course sits just at the edges of popular adaptations of that method, I stuck with that term to provide some form of cultural reference. However, if you’re looking for an intense, productivity-focused SYSTEM™®© to super-organise yourself, fix your whole life, and fill your journal up with instagrammeable spreads, KNITSONIK Bullet Journaling might not be for you. But if you want to explore daily life creativity; encouraging list-making; and a playful, kindly approach to organising yourself in a printed paper journal, I think you might enjoy what I have made. One student summed things up perfectly when she said “it’s about things being FUN… but also, DONE”.
What about the KNIT and the SONIK?
For those of you who are mainly here for KNITSONIK Stranded Colourwork joy, there is a substantial section in the course dedicated to creativity, with an optional tasked focused on adapting a dot-grid journal specifically to the context of creative, stranded-colourwork projects. It’s only suitable for knitters who already know a bit about knitting stranded colourwork – a more substantial deep-dive into the topic will be the focus of my next KNITSONIK class – but I really enjoyed working on this section.
In it, I speak specifically about using my journal to as an aid to my design work for squares for the Balance for Better Blanket on which I worked last year, for International Women’s Day, with KDD & Co.. I talk through processes of familiarising myself with a new yarn palette in the pages of my journal – in this case, Milarrochy Tweed…
…and using my journal to design my square celebrating the late textile designer, Althea McNish, and her phenomenal cultural impact and legacy…
…about using the journal as a place to easily manage potentially confusing shading sequences, using tables or grids, as I did in my own journal while designing Polkamania!…
…and about the tracing/drawing method I have adapted for trying out different shading schemes for a design such as the Skystone Armwarmers pattern which I designed for Boost Your Knitting: Another Year of Techniques by AC-Knitwear.
As for the SONIK, I am excited to be able to share with you, in coming days, an interview with the gorgeous musician whose work has provided the soundtrack for my online course. Their amazing compositions are the only thing I’ve found online that chimed with the same feelings of curiosity, play and connection with which I wanted to infuse my online course and I can’t wait to tell you more about them and their work. The course also features a nice field-recording of my chickens, and long-term buddies of KNITSONIK soundart projects may recognise the little xylophone-chime that marks the completion of tasks within the course as the same one I once used for a radio feature I used to make for BBC Oxford called I SPY/I HEAR.
I hope that gives you a flavour of what I’ve been doing through the Spring/Summer of this year: I made a course.
There’s so much more to say, but I’ll save it for another day.
For now I just wanted to share that my course is open for new enrolments; that newsletter subscribers will receive a 10% discount code when I write to my mailing list later this evening; and that this is the last week when I’ll be able to offer my journals and washi tape with free shipping before 1st July, after which Royal Mail’s new rates will make it impossible for me to continue to absorb the shipping costs on these items. If you’ve been wondering whether or not you want them, from now to 1st July is the last foreseeable time when I’ll be able to offer them at the current prices.
Thanks – as ever – for stopping by to read about what I’ve been up to.
Yours in video-editing, online learning and daily creativity –