Sunday, 30 June 2013

A mid-year goals update

At the start of 2013 I gave myself some sewing goals to aim for. Well, here we are, slightly shockingly, already at the mid-point of the year. Here's how I'm doing:

  • Spending allowance. I gave myself a fixed (but generous) budget for the whole year to spend on all and any crafty stuff. I should, theoretically have exactly half left. I have, er, rather less. I've spent about 60% of it so far. Oops. On the plus side, after my why do I own this much?! shock when I packed my stuff in Cumbria getting ready to move, I am really, seriously determined to buy as little fabric as possible for the rest of the year. Exceptions: possible trip to London fabric shops with my friend B, which will DEFINITELY involve fabric buying, plus linings and the like, plus, let's be honest, fabrics that I see that I just have to have because they're really special and amazing.
  • Relatedly, fabric destash. My goal is to use more garment fabric than I buy, and my "stretch" goal was to use 25% of my stash. Excuse me while I go roll around laughing for a while at that stretch goal, because wow, no, that's not going to happen. So far this year I've bought 71m of fabric and used 51m, so I am net right around +20m, which, again, not really going according to plan. However, given what I wrote in the previous bullet point I am pretty sure I'll use more than I sew overall this year, even if there's no way I'll hit the 25% reduction.
  • Sew 24 items of wearable clothing. My goal was to sew 2 things per month. I'm waaaaay ahead of target on this, even though it gets a little definitional. I've made 18 garments so far this year, or about three a month. Of those, two were what I'm going to call Finished Wadders. That is to say, I finished them and took photos and even wore them out the house. However once I wore them a couple of times I was like: no, this is not working for me. In one case I tossed it into the recycling and in the other it's still lurking about as I am undecided what to do with it. The other 16 items though are doing well. There's two I haven't worn much yet, but that's a weather issue more than anything. Overall: definitely on track here. (However, it gets much less impressive when you realize that fully 5 of my 18 finished garments are made to one ultra-simple knit tee pattern. Never mind, though, complexity wasn't the goal, and I've worn those tops more than anything else I've made.)
  • Make my whole outfit for N&L's wedding in June. Done! \o/
  • Sew (a) one dress; (b) one buttoned blouse with collar; (c) one jacket. I haven't done (a) at all, but it's in the plan for as soon as I am settled in a long-term place and I have my sewing stuff back. I have a pattern traced and fabric picked for (b) and it's in the plan for July, so watch this space. I have actually made TWO jackets, so (c) is done. \o/
  • Finish 6 knitted items. So far I've finished 3 simple scarves. The less said about the purple jumper I started out so enthusiastically knitting the better. More on that soon. I do want to do this, but summer is not the best knitting time, really, even in chilly Ireland.
  • Keep Etsy bag shop stock at 15-20 items. My shop is offline right now because my inventory is still in the UK, but there's 19 finished items in stock, and I haven't dipped below 15. \o/
  • Enter 2 Pattern Review contests. Done! \o/ I entered the Handbag contest at the start of the year, and the Natural Fibres contest with my jacket for the wedding (which got 9 votes, including mine, and came in something like 60th!) Still, the objective was not really to win (...which is probably just as well) but just to participate in the community.
I'm also sort of trying to do a "sew your whole wardrobe" thing, but clearly I just don't have the actual skill level to do that right now. My modified version was that I want to make things that I can, and gradually develop my skills so that one day I have a majority hand-made wardrobe. That's actually going well so far. I'm also trying to work on figuring out TNT patterns. In one case I've been wildly successful (Ottobre 02-2013-02, which I finally think I've perfected after making it 5 times -- and I have a plan to make a whole clutch more of them once I have my overlocker/fabric with me.) but other than that I haven't made anything often enough to really call it a TNT.

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