Top 5 of 2015: Highlights and Reflections

#sewingtop5 - The Top 5 of 2015!
For my second post, I’m combining my non-sewing highlights of the year with my reflections on the things I did make. Let’s dive right in, shall we?

Highlights:
20150622_1902341. Obviously, the biggest one for me this year is that I made a little human! While pregnancy and labor were physically the absolute hardest thing I’ve ever done, and I haven’t gotten a single full night’s sleep all year as a result, this little cutie has been 1000% worth it. I can’t believe he’s almost 6 months old already!

2. Does it make me sound like a total bum if I say that a highlight is having only one part-time job? I’ve had multiple jobs my entire post-college life, all in the name of trying to support my ability to keep working in music in one way or another. But since my last day of my old seasonal retail job was just before last Christmas, this year, I’ve been quite content with being a full-time mom/part-time flute teacher.

3. I’ve gotten a lot of time in with my very first hobby love this year– reading. While I was pregnant, sometimes that was all I had the energy to do. Thanks to my Kindle, books (and blogs) have helped me stay awake through many a late night feeding session. And while I haven’t quite managed daily, I’m trying to get into the habit now of reading to Hobbit as often as I can, in hopes of passing a love of the written word on to him.

4. New blog. It wasn’t easy for me to decide to move on from my old Blogger site, especially since I had to change the name. But sometimes a fresh start is nice. And obviously, my crafty life had to change, with the life changes I’ve had this year. To quote Annie, I think I’m gonna like it here. (As an extension to blogging, I’m going to throw in Instagram, because I’ve quite enjoyed the monthly photo challenges with #sewphotohop and #bpsewvember. My only wish is that IG would allow me to choose which photos to make public and which to keep to followers. Maybe someday?)

20151017_1240455. My husband. Aside from the two weeks of paternity leave that he was with us for, he burned all of his sick days to stay home and help me on particularly hard days (usually when the baby kept me up all night). He’s also got this uncanny knack of being able to get through more cleaning and organizing around the house in three hours than I can get through in three weeks, usually when taking the baby for a few hours on weekend nights so I can catch up on some sleep. He’s amazing.

Reflections:
1. My sewing this year, as a whole, has been so utilitarian. Aside from the practical baby things, like diapers/bags/nursing cover, a lot of my choices were driven by literally having almost nothing to wear that fit. So I had to go with things that were quick to sew and work for nursing. And while I don’t necessarily regret the projects that fit the current need, or used up fabric that would still otherwise be sitting in my stash, several of these were not things I probably would have made if I was going for the ideal of a wardrobe full of things that I love.

2. I definitely struggle mentally with letting go of supplies that I don’t know what to do with. (See my “secret corner of shame” pic from the #sewphotohop.) Whether leftovers from projects, old pieces from my stash that I just never found the right project for/are too fancy for my new mom life, or perfectly useable fabric that people destash onto me that I wouldn’t have chosen myself, I’d guess a solid third to half of my stash is made up of fabrics that I’m clueless about how to use. But since they’re not nice enough to try to sell, being mostly polyester blends, and I haven’t found any good solutions around here for non-clothing textile recycling–even the thrift shops here don’t take yardage that isn’t old curtains and such– I feel bad just sending them to the landfill. And so they sit, waiting for inspiration to strike. And also making me feel a little guilty whenever I want to pick out some new fabric, or just can’t find a good piece for whatever pattern I’m using in the stash.

3. I guess those first two are to say that I’ve reached the point where, while I don’t necessarily want a small wardrobe– I’ve learned that I get extremely bored with wearing the same 10 outfits all the time, thanks to my maternity clothes– I want a more curated one. And definitely a smaller stash that’s all either prints that inspire me, or good for making basics to complete the outfits. I’m just not sure yet how to make that happen, given #2 in particular.

4. I did enjoy making a couple of capsules this year, and if I can continue to plan outfits that way– especially separates– I think that will help with the curating.

5. I wish it was easier to find fun knit prints that are suitable for little boys that don’t cost $15+ per half yard. It seems like most of the really cute patterns I’ve found for boys so far involve knits. Since his daddy is so picky about clothes and I can never sew for him as a result, I feel like I have to have my fun while Hobbit is still little and lets me pick what he wears! At the same time, I am grateful that we’ve been given such a large stash of second-hand clothes for him, because then I don’t have to stress about having to make him clothes. And I am enjoying being able to make him some toys instead, too. So I guess it evens out.

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8 thoughts on “Top 5 of 2015: Highlights and Reflections

  1. gilliancrafts

    I feel like you are going to be a happy camper when you can have a dedicated fabric shopping budget. Even if it’s just $30/month or something… that would qualify you for free shipping at some places (for which I’m verrrry jealous Americans) and you could slow build up a nice garment or two a month that you loved. In the mean time, I’m glad you’ve got such a deep stash, and you’ve put it to great work so far!

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    1. Given how slowly my projects move these days, I could probably stretch that to one fabric purchase per season! Maybe the way to go is to pick a stash piece and then choose a new piece to go with it or something, and then I can make sure I don’t waste my precious time on wardrobe orphans.

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  2. Alicia

    Have you tried freecycle for your extra/unwanted fabric? I’m sure there’s a newbie who’d love to have some stuff to practice with. I REALLY need to go through my fabric and finally decide to part with the things that I bought when I was a newbie and didn’t know any better, or bought on impulse because it was a great deal. But then I struggle, because I can always use that stuff for muslins (I actually recently used some *terrible* fabric on some quick muslins, thankfully)…Anyway, I’m rambling, but just wanted to let you know I’m in the same boat (and enjoy reading these year-end recaps!).
    -forwhoitsfor

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    1. I’ve done Freecycle in the past, but I live in a different county now. I did try to look it up and see if there’s one more local to me after reading this, and apparently there is, but my Kindle was refusing to connect to the relevant Yahoo group so I could actually join it. 😛 I’ll have to try again on an actual computer. Otherwise, muslins may be the way to go for me.

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  3. That hobbit! He is too cute! I hear you about having stuff in the stash that you can’t use, but don’t know what to do with. Maybe you could try offering them up on IG if the takers can PayPal you the cost of shipping? One sewist’s trash, another’s treasure? 🙂

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    1. It might be worth a shot. If nothing else, I was thinking that maybe I could occasionally post a fabric pic on there and hopefully get some ideas of what to make them into!

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  4. Oh the fabric dilemma! I’ve been wondering if I can’t find some local sewists for a fabric swap, but I’m hesitating because I have no idea if anybody would want the fabric that I have no idea what to do with… 😉

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