Thursday, February 1

ReSEWlutions

Happy February! Is it too late to make 2018 sewing resolutions? Lets hope not! It may be a bit late, but considering we moved on the 5th of January, were sort of homeless for 2 weeks, and only moved in on the 20th, I'm calling this a win. Especially considering I was co-hosting the the #coatmakingparty on Instagram, sewed two coats and participated in #shirtmonth with my Sarah Shirt. Whew! I'm exhausted.

On to my goals.

My sewing goals may look quite different from many of yours and thats ok. 2016 and 2017 were amazing sewing years, and just years in general, for me. But 2018 has started out the roughest I've ever had. Its given me real anxiety for the first time ever and its made my moods unpredictable and my desire to sew disappear. As I try to clear the fog and feel like myself again I've been analyzing how I spend my time and resources on sewing. And its actually been quite wasteful.

First I am a mother, and sewing is my hobby. For some reason it seems for me to be harder to balance motherhood and sewing than it was for me to balance teaching and sewing. You can't get sidetracked when your teaching anatomy and physiology by fabric in the other room and decide to take a minute to print a pattern and assemble it. But as a full time mother and homemaker the fabric is nearby, and when kids are playing peacefully its easy to get distracted. My hobby has brought me happiness and connection in the places where motherhood has left gaps. Because of that I let sewing take up a huge portion of my time last year which leads me feeling out of balance and discontent, instead of feeling balance, peace and happiness in my life.


Also, like the rest of you, I get the itch to sew every new pattern. Ok, obviously not every new pattern but its easy to get caught up in the hype of what everyone else is sewing and I have, on occasion, convinced myself to sew something that I knew I didn't love and wouldn't suit me simply because I wanted to be a part of the club. For example, when the whole world was sewing Mcalls 7542, (above) I eventually couldn't help but jump on the bandwagon, and ended up with several of the most ill fitting blouses that never get worn. This type of sewing has turned into donating a lot clothing that I has taken time away from family to make, and money down the drain that was spent on fabric. Additionally, many of the garments I have made have not been as good of quality as I would like them to be considering my experience, simply because I rush through things so that I can be done, feel accomplished and not spend as much time away from family duties.

So this year, I want to sew...

Less

As I was listening to the lovely ladies on the Love to Sew podcast about increasing sewing output I just laughed out loud. I remember when that was me and I was working full time with no kids and I just wanted to sew more. Now I'm on the other side of that with young kids who aren't in school or a thousand activities yet, one of the few people who needs no help increasing their output.

This year I am slowing down, analyzing each make, and seeing how useful it is in my wardrobe. Its time for me now to accept to that I have no "gaps in my wardrobe." I have no desire to sew lingerie, underwear, or learn to make shoes. As those are essentially the only store bought items in my closet I need to make a lot less. My closet is full, I have plenty of clothes and I need to be a lot more intentional about what I am doing and why.



It took me ages to create my Make Nine for this year because, although there are a thousand beautiful things I could make, I decided if I am going to keep sewing and be less wasteful about it I should also sew the patterns and fabric that I have. So thats my second goal. Which goes right along with less.

Reduce

Reduce my amount of unused patterns, reduce the size of my fabric collection. The amount of fabric I own actually doesn't bring me stress, shame or guilt because I have sold off pretty much all the fabric I owned that I didn't love anymore or for which I didn't have a use. So I am left with fabric I love, but I do think fabric that beautiful deserves to fulfill the measure of its creation and become something, and something really useful that isn't going to be immediately given away. It also doesn't hurt that we are living in a smaller home here in Utah than we had in Arizona so there's not tons of room for fabrics, patterns, or clothes anyway.

My last goal has to do with slowing down, taking time to read all the instructions, make a muslin, and  really analyze the fit and construction  (I've made three things from my make nine already and didn't make a muslin on any them...#fail). If I am sewing less, I should be able to really make those pieces high quality and with great fit. I've learned a lot about standard adjustments I need to make to patterns from different designers and I don't want to skip them. As I am someone who loves comfort, but doesn't love joggers, leggings or knit tees - correct fit is essential. If you're going to wear woven blouses and jeans a lot, those jeans better fit great and you better not have skipped the broad back or forward shoulder adjustment or you'll hate the tops you have. So this year I'll be...

Patient

Patient with myself, my sewing and my skills. I'll remember that its better (for me at this stage of my sewing) to have something that I love and fits well than it is to be finished. I'll remember that its better to have fewer garments that get worn frequently, are high quality and will last a long time, than a closet full of ill fitting, low quality garments that are rarely worn.

So there you have it. My 2018 resolutions. To sew less. To reduce my fabric and pattern stash. And to be patient. The clothes I plan on making this year are garments that help me in these goals. More bottoms to help me slow down and focus on fit. Button down shirts and shirt dresses to focus on shoulder and back fit issues, coats because thats one area of apparel sewing I haven't tackled, and a few last items that I just really need, all while making items that will get lots of wear and using patterns I have never made but owned for ages.

I am excited for where this will take me and to see where my skills lie when we hit 2019.

Cheers and happy very belated new year!

1 comment:

  1. Oh my goodness, your goals sound exactly like mine this year! My oldest son has started to be a little resentful about the time that I spend sewing when he isn’t at school or asleep. Sewing is what keeps me sane with three kids but I need to remember it’s my hobby and my job as mom is most important. I’m trying to work through more of my fabric and pattern stash this year, too. I can’t wait to see your progress on your Make Nine list— you’re off to a great start!

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