As I write this, I'm sitting at a cafe near my *new* apartment just three miles from my office, relieved that I've just said goodbye to a grueling commute. So once I get settled, that means hours and hours I've got to devote to sewing time. :) A few thoughts during this transition.
1: The Packing Boxes Don't Lie
Packing is always a bit of a reality check as to just how much I've managed to acquire, especially when it comes to my re-imagined wardrobe. My final tally: I've got 2-1/2 times fabric or refashion projects than I do actual clothes hanging in my closet. I already feel like I've got more clothes than I need and if I were to sew every last piece in my stash, my closet would be bursting, completely defeating the point of having less.
So I think I need to put myself on a fabric-buying hiatus, with exceptions made for projects I'll start immediately (and thus bypassing the stash completely!) such as the Uniform Project LBD that I hope to sew soon with the lovely Deborah at Minnado's House.
Do you ever do this? Stop yourself from buying fabric and/or patterns so it doesn't get out of control?
2: Our Lady (Grey) of Quality
When I've found a spare sewing moment, the Lady Grey coat has taken up all my attention, partly because I can finally see the end in sight and feel I must finish it before moving on to anything else or it will languish undone forever.
Despite excellent pattern instructions, I could go on about my frustrations—major alterations, problems with fabric—but I'm surprisingly enjoying the process. Related to #1, for the first time since I've started this blog, I feel my wardrobe has enough. For example, I have two coats so I really don't need another.
Still, this coat will be a welcome addition to my closet because it's distinctive and beautiful. How can there not be room for that? And I think this is a signal that my mode-of-operation as a sewer is changing. My previous desire to dash off quick-and-easy projects is giving way to marshaling the patience to make a single garment with high personal value. And perhaps it's the season. Inclement weather always reminds me that quality matters.
As much as I oogle Colette Patterns, I've been shy because they seemed too complex—lots of pattern pieces, lots of fabric, muslin likely required. But with this change(-ing) of heart, I've snapped up the Crepe, and I've put the Rooibos (which I fell in love with instantly) and the Parfait (not an initial fave, but this seems like a universally flattering dress) on my Christmas wish list. And the boy's specifically requested the Negroni.
What patterns do you turn to for high quality garments?
Observation #3: Sewing for the masses?
A Negroni for the boy means a bit of selfless sewing. And this video here made me think we could take it even further. From the Huffington Post, the Fixers Collective at this Brooklyn gallery offers space for the community to come in and repair their items.
"With a goal of increasing material literacy in the community, the Collective fosters an ethic of creative caring toward objects that are part of everyday life."See the video here.
Let's think for a moment, folks: What would be the sewing equivalent? How many folks have you met that say they "can't even sew a button"? My mind wanders, inspired:
Public service sewing classes.
One-day/one-hour sewing workshops. Fabric stores. Resale shops. Boutiques.
Free. Open to the public.
Bring your button-less shirts. Your too-long trousers. Your unloved sweaters.
Empower yourself. Re-imagine your wardrobe. Reconsider value. Re-use.
A mini-revolution, one-button at a time.