Monday, January 2, 2017

HAPPY 2017!

Yay for a new year!!!

So excited for this turn of the calendar and feeling like it will be a fantastic year. On the sewing front I honestly haven't given a ton of thought to what's next but that's doesn't have to be a big 'thing'.

I have a lot of patterns. I have a lot of space to store patterns. Therefore, I will not stress myself out over the number that I own. I do think I can do a bit of culling. I have patterns in stash that I tried before and basically think are the devil in paper form (Looking at you Burda 6910). Why keep them? And others that I look at and wonder why I bought them as I don't really think they are my style.

I have tried to purchase more thoughtfully and will continue that.

My Burda sub has been renewed. People have commented on the January and February issues being lighter on patterns. The January issue has 21 unique patterns, excluding the kids' costumes. There is no petite pattern and one tall pattern. There was no petite pattern in the December issue either and that one also had about 20ish women's patterns. November had closer to 30 but a lot of the extras were pretty much variations in length. . I think I would rather have fewer patterns with true variations than to have them show the same thing 3-4 times with some small change in detail like color blocking or pockets.

I have one more Ottobre coming and I will decide if I want to renew or not. I may just buy those on a per magazine basis. I almost always like the autumn/winter issue and am a bit meh on the spring/summer.

I love buying fabric! I have a big stash and that's okay with me. But right now it feels out of control and not well contained. I need to cull there too. I have a whole bin that I almost always overlook. I dig through and 'meh' all the choices. And since I rarely muslin, again, Why hang on to it?

I am resolving to spend $500, max, on fabric in 2017. That does NOT include lining or interfacing.

So, $500 on fabric! LOL! I plan to spend less overall this year and that includes sewing. I have tried and just cannot with JoAnn. I will go there in an absolute pinch and for those rare 70% off notions events, but there is no attempt to improve the store and I don't like giving them my money.

**I understand some people have great local stores but I don't. So please, no need to defend your store or why you visit them. (sorry, not sorry).**

I will continue to buy BMV online through my membership. I don't buy a ton of Simplicity patterns anymore, but we will see how that goes when there is something I "must" have. I will continue to buy notions and zippers from Wawak and other online stores.

Lastly I want to start saving for a cover stitch. I sew a ton of knits and I would love one in my arsenal. I also know I want a Pfaff but as you all know I have a college student and a soon to be HS senior and my life is EXPENSIVE right now. So that may be my "In 2018 I'm done *raising* kids" gift to myself. Or a 40th birthday gift. Who knows :)

What do I want to sew? What do I want to achieve?
I have tackled a few pieces of outerwear but since I am such an instant-gratification person I find it hard to start them.  This isn't a sewing issue; it's just my personality so it's much harder to combat!

But I have to 1) because I DO have some longer term/"Bigger" projects I want to sew and 2) I actually can't continue my current output but I need to sew most of the time! Again, I don't mind having a larger wardrobe -  I always have, even when I was strictly RTW. But I have a LOT of clothes right now.

Well...fall/winter. I can still stand some serious work on my summer wardrobe. And spring barely exists here.

1) A blazer. I REALLY WANT THIS!! As mentioned before I have a couple from J.Crew that fit decent but not perfect and I love blazers.

2) MOARRRRR coats. I love outerwear. I've always had a TON of coats.
  • I plan to sew the Closet Case Files Clare relatively soon. 
  • I need another casual coat - I love my Minoru but it is a linen blend and has quite a limited span of time it can be worn here. I need something warmer but just as sporty but not as BIG(!) as my down coat. I *think* I can make the Minoru from a wool. I know some of the areas can get bulky but thinking lighter weight wool + silk lining = warm jacket. We shall see.  
  • Trench coat. I have a RTW that I've owned for forever but it's made from some very lightweight cotton that is so damned wrinkly all the time! ALL THE TIME!!! Plus I have this sweet vintage Simplicity and a buy-the-yard khaki colored fabric I scored from FM so I just have to.

3) I have to finish my daughter's quilt. I feel so bad that I never got it done. I have to see how many blocks I have but I can't make anymore blocks. I can't. I cannot cut up any more tiny squares. (I'm shaking my head rapidly from side to side saying, "no! no! NO!!!!! No more!")

I think I have 11- 14"x14" blocks. If so I'll make a 12th one I have 14 blocks and am unsure if a 3x5 center will work. It may look too disproportioned. If it's okay I'll move forward...if not I'll take it back to 12. and then build up the rest of the quilt with borders. Yes, I still have to cut up and reassemble fabrics but not tiny squares that become triangles and all that. :shudder:

See? No more tiny pieces. No more. I am no longer able.

And there goes my career as a quilter. If my son really wants a quilt he will get a jelly roll race quilt. That was fine. That I can do. My annoyance with that came with the actual quilting. And I have watched so many YouTube vids and read so many blogs but my brain is unable to miter corners.  But I can pay someone to quilt and bind it!

4) Bodice.Sloper.!!! I want to do this. Well, no I don't want to; it doesn't sound fun...but it sounds necessary. 

Grrrr. I didn't lose a ton of weight but I'd lost some in 2015 (~12-15 lbs) and nearly all of my knee pain disappeared. Right around that time I'd found an article in a medical journal that said for people who suffer OA of the knee, every pound of weight loss reduces the force on the knees by 4 lbs. And I was ecstatic that I wasn't suffering constantly. 

Well the weight is back and so is the pain. It hurts a lot. Everyday, no matter the activity, and my scale says I weigh 189 and my rheumatologist wants me to lose 30 lbs. So I need to do it. I won't set a hard/fast number for weight loss. E.g., if I lose like 26 lbs I'm calling it good. Because I don't actually dislike my almost 190 lb body but my knees and hips hurt so it's too much. 

Professionally I'm gunning for some big moves! I have a certification to prep for and I need to get my behind in gear. My exam window is 5/1 - 7/15 and I have a lot of studying to do!

Personally I have a lot to leave behind in 2016 and sure this may sound a little hokey, but I have to let a lot of negativity go. I was a poster on GOMI, and no, it isn't all personal attacks and meanness. But it DOES go there and it's really not nice when it's against someone you consider a friend (hey, our sewing friendships are so important even when we've never met irl!). So I felt complicit in a way, even though I didn't participate in those discussions and defended as I saw fit. So I'm done there. 

Pattern Review. Grr. I almost deleted my account at one point. It's like 2016 was the year of the crazies over there. But I had to remember how much I enjoyed that site when I first learned to sew and to be a participant in a way that works for me. So helpful posts, pattern discussions, writing reviews, etc...and leaving all the crazy making stuff alone.

Wait - I'm not talking about putting on those rose-colored-everything is fine and positive and totally uplifting in the sewing blog community-glasses. I'm talking about not bogging myself down with people and things who are nasty and take up mental space that they certainly don't deserve.

My local sewing group has decided to keep a set date/time for meeting up and then whoever makes it can make it. So I am happy to have that to look forward to now most months. I am truly a home body and if not for my kids I would be holed up in my house a lot. I'm really going to try to be a bit more social in 2017.  Right now it's pretty much automatically a hard no on doing anything during the week after work. Which may sound normal (lol) but I get off work at 4:30 and am usually home 20 minutes later. And yes I go to bed early but I can still get out occasionally and do more socially.

Social Media. I deactivated Facebook back in September, and got back on temporarily last month.  I have deactivated again as I just can't.  And I am *this* close to leaving Instagram. FB owns it now and I dislike the changes they are making. However, I do feel like interacting on IG in the sewing realm has been a bit different than IG as a whole. The problem is that I don't get to live in my sewing bubble anymore because of their stupid algorithms and suggested content. And I dislike the 'liking' of comments on posts. So I am finding myself annoyed/irritated a lot of the time when I'm on there.

Recap of 2017 goals and sewing plans:

1) Buy patterns thoughtfully; cull at some point (early) this year.
2) Continue my Burda challenge (okay fine I didn't mention this but I'm totally doing it again). I will sew a Burda a month from that particular month; but from any year.
3) Consider dropping Ottobre depending on how spring/summer looks
4) Buy fabric thoughtfully. Limit fabric purchases to $500 for the year; excluding lining and interfacing.
5) Sew a fitted, lined blazer
6) Sew 3 new outerwear pieces
7) Finish my daughter's quilt
8) Create a bodice sloper
9) Lose the danged 30 (ish) pounds
10) Be more positive
11) Be more social in real life


  1. I love this post! I have to admit that I always wondered how you handled the negativity at GOMI because I just can't...even though I loved that you tried to be a voice of reason. I've found a way to handle the IG algorithms, I just click on the person's name and look at their pictures because my only social media is IG and blogs. You know I can't stand Facebook too.

    Your $500 fabric limit made my heart stop...but then if I stop buying for half the year, I guess I'm hoping that I don't spend too much more than that. I'm gonna have to meditate on that figure. And I'm a homebody too...just way too interesting to stay home and sew. I'm constantly reminding myself that I need to get out more.

    One final note - I'm so not a quilter so I understand what you're saying but I hope you get it finished for your daughters sake. So looking forward to following your sewing journey this year!

    1. Haha! I know I thought long and hard about that limit! :) But it works within my other financial goals for the year.

      I am so with you on the staying inside where it's nice and cozy and quiet and where my machines are!!! :)

      Thanks Carolyn and Happy New Year!

  2. Happy New Year! It's always so interesting reading everyone's goals and aspirations for the year ahead. Good luck with all your plans, looking forward to seeing that Clare coat!

  3. My my! that is a lot going on there! Fairly sure you will get most, if not all, of it accomplished.

    I logged onto GOMI once. That was enough. I like and appreciate the warmth in my IG sewing friends. IG keeps suggesting non-sewing friends but I just ignore them. I will eventually get my blog up and running again, so glad you still have one.

    I hear you regarding the pain of excess weight. I have to improve in that area too. As well as in general fitness. SIGH

    All the best wishes for this year!

    1. I always have a lot going on! LOL!!!! It's my gift and curse.

      Happy New Year! And thank you for hanging around my little old space! :)

  4. Lots there to mull over. I too want to make a bodice sloper... I made my own years ago.. ha ha, you should see the tiny numbers, needless to say it doesn't fit now. I don't do Facebook or IG just my blog. I connected once to FB because I thought years ago a friend signed me up (I don't remember the details) but in the space of 2 minutes I got emails and friend requests and just shut it down. No, no, no. I nearly get tempted by IG but nah I don't need the distraction. I read GOMI once but overall I don't like the tone ... there's enough of that around anyway without reading in on purpose. Hope for a good 2017 for us all.

    1. Happy New Year Summer Flies!

      I hear ya on the evolution of those measurements ;-) Hopefully you get another one done this year too!

  5. I also have to lose weight for the EA and it's tough. :( I think your goals are really reasonable. I was thinking I should set a sewing budget as well because 2016 was fairly excessive for me! Most of my goals are non-sewing (lose weight, move forward in career, etc.). I love your blog and your Insta. You're an inspiration!

    1. Thanks for sharing Angelle!

      RA is a tough one. I hope your 2017 is relatively pain free and that you achieve all of your goals as well!

  6. I've always considered GOMI to be a cesspool where the miserable gathered instead of actually sewing. I'd always wondered what you got out of that environment because you're smart and productive.

    I love reading other's sewing goals, because I'm not a planner in that way. I don't plan the sewing and I don't meal plan. Two things that never worked for me.

    I feel you on the weight. In the last 3 years, I dropped 40. In the last year, I gained back 10. I'm comfortable here but I don't want to gain anymore!

    1. Happy New Year Erica!

      There are a LOT of sewing bloggers on GOMI. A lot. You'd be surprised. Some discussions have totally been helpful and enlightening about pattern companies. But as I said, when it goes "there", I get uncomfortable. Attacking people personally (not business), name calling, etc...I don't like.

      You have totally been a weight loss inspiration so thank you! And yeah, a friend is very successful with meal planning and calorie counting but that just makes me crazy. I know what to eat and what not to eat...and when I've eaten too much. I'll have to take it slowly, one step at a time. It'll happen.

  7. "I'm talking about not bogging myself down with people and things who are nasty and take up mental space that they certainly don't deserve."

    This. All the this-es that ever this-ed. Making peace with yourself (myself) and this sentiment is SO freeing.

    Please don't leave Instagram! Of course, I say this having posted, what five times last year? Bwahahaha.

    I mostly lurk on GOMI. One can be smart, productive, not miserable and still lurk/comment on GOMI. Its snark meter is off the charts, but there are some discussions that make sense. Personally, I can take it or leave it.

    You have OA too? I have it in both knees and can really tell the difference when my weight is up. I want to lose 15-20 pounds and try to keep it off. I had a setback with HORRIBLE quad pain for the last two weeks, so working out has been on hold.

    You have some great goals for the year. As always, I look forward to reading about your adventures and dressmaking debacles. =) Keep on, friend!

    1. Yesssss! Mental freeness / peace / joy...I must get it back. MUST.

      I agree on GOMI. I don't think it's all bad. But then there are personal attacks that I just do not get. One fashion blogger discussion I left because they just got vicious on the woman. The things they were saying about her...goodness gracious. And then there's one who's consumption and spending is out of control and most certainly snark-worthy as per GOMI standards. But this insistence that she "looks like a man no matter what she's wearing"? Just bitchy, crude and rude.

      Yes. OA of the knees and right hip. And bursitis too. Ugh!!!

      Good luck with your goals and hope that pain eases. It's no fun.

  8. O honey you can do it!I enjoy your posts & appreciate your insights on patterns & fabric. It's a big help for me to learn from others journeys in the sewing world & to be a part of a "family". I have OA, RA,fibro, heart arithmia & still have 50 lbs to go on my weight loss. So far it's been loss 40 for 3 yrs but just gain 10 due to bulging discs (very pain full).So this year I am getting on track to take the 50 off & keep it off! I will have to put down the ice cream & chocolate & pick up my shears & pins instead.
    I keep to a VERY low sewing budget less than 100.00 for year as most of my fabric is thru resale shops. I'm on disability so am quite "frugal" where the $$ goes every penny counts.
    I love to sew & follow a few guys/gals, no IG or other media nonsense, pretty much an at home girl out here in the country woods. I used to be a lot more social but with my health not as it was I've pretty much kept home I too will get out of my comfort zone (ie:couch) & stick my toe into the pool of humanity.
    Good luck in your journey this year. Blessings Baa

  9. Cough (I'll gladly take your cull off your hands) cough. I'm not as active on pattern review as I used to be either. I hope to blog more and actually sew more. I have the Colette planner so hopefully it will help set goals and focus my sewing.

    1. Haha! :) When I get them sorted I'll be sure to post in case anyone wants to take some off my hands.

      Happy New Year! I hope you get to sew more too!

  10. Even though I don't like planning out my sewing too much or putting restrictions on myself I enjoyed reading this post. Your honesty makes me chuckle - but in a good way. Hope your plans work out!

    1. Thanks Manju! You are quite productive with your sewing even if it isn't planned. I love it!

  11. Best wishes on your plans/goals for 2017.. Wish you the very best..
    I too, feel the hurt on all the "not niceness" that goes with social media.. I too, deleted my FB.But
    reinstated it because I wanted to be able to see what the grandkids were doing [photos etc]. I dont really do anything on there anymore..Just watch my pretty
    I am with you on the weight gain..up 25 pounds.. SO frustrating.... The arthritis is so bad on the knees when i gain weight.. I am TRYING to watch what I eat , so maybe it will come off soon.. HOpe
    Your sewing ideas and plans sound fantastic..
    Best wishes with your school[test}..

    1. Thank you so much Judy! And yes, that old 'Arthur' makes life tough sometimes!

  12. Ha! We must be sewing sisters! My nearest Joanns isn't great either. I feel the same as you about giving them my money. If I am in a pinch I will, (mostly I pattern buy) but otherwise I try to avoid them. I too am saving for a coverstitch machine this year, and I really like the Pfaff! I had some weight gain with my pregnancy, and still need to lose a good 25 pounds. I feel good most days, and like the curves that come along with my body, yet I have been having lots of knee and leg pain!!!! So, yeah, it isn't a rush or anything, but just eating healthy and getting lots of exercise. Thank you for sharing your goals for the year. I know you will do exceptionally well!

    1. We certainly must be!

      And yep you'll likely work off those extra pounds being active with the kiddos.

  13. Amazing goals for this year!!! I hear you on dropping the drama behind. More peace and happiness to you this year!

    I lost 35 lbs last year in keto diet (high fat, low carb, moderate protein) and it saved my knees. It clicked only after reading your list in weigh vs knee pain. And i'm so glad I don't get the knee pain now.

    1. I hope to complete a tough professional certification this year too.

    2. Good luck on your cert Kay!

      I am looking forward to being pain free again. It is keeping me motivated!

  14. Blogger seems to have lost the comment I posted yesterday, so I will do another (brief one this time!!). Sorry to hear about the OA - good idea to work that weight down to resolve the pain. I have RA, most annoying from time to time. Patterns and stash - I think we all overstash in this area, and great idea to start culling and keeping what works in your mind's eye. As for the internet, I steer clear of negative places - and I have quite a few theories about why negative people love the internet , including being anonymous. Good move to stay out of it and spend time with people you feel good with.

    1. Blogger can be a headache.

      Good point on the stashing. It's so fun to do but before you know it you're looking cross at a bunch of things :)

      Hmmm. I'd like to hear those theories some day! Psychology fascinates me.

  15. Happy New Year to you and I'm glad you are continuing with Burda magazine - you always seem to find great patterns there that I want to make. I just can't with the tracing out of that magazine so I made an exception to my no PDF rule to buy the individual patterns from their site. As for the fabric diet - you can do it! you might be surprised at how much fabric you can find via other sources, such as ASG sales or thrift stores. It makes for a fun challenge.

    1. Thanks Beth! Happy New Year!

      Yeah I don't know if I'm too sad about the mags having fewer patterns - that sounds like fewer lines on those sheets! :)

      I have never seen fabric at the thrift store closest to me but maybe I need to venture out!

  16. Great goals! I'm just catching up on blogs since I went into a cocoon during the holidays. I was wondering where you got to on FB. I totally understand getting off it. It can be quite terrible. IG is also driving me nuts but I hang on there because I am mostly social there. I definitely would prefer in person social things. Too bad we don't live closer! :)


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