more thoughts on abundance, scarcity, stashing, and making...

I remember about this time 2 years ago at Lammas that I wanted to try to use up some fabric from my stash for a month, as fall approached - but instead, I just stopped sewing for a couple of years.

Strangely, I began to sew again in spring this year, right around the same time that I started sewing for myself 2 years ago... so I'm a little worried, with some waning 'sewjo' in the last month, that I would follow the same cycle again and stop sewing in fall.  But this time, I think I will persevere and get into the winter sewing this time.

I have some lovely wool and flannel fabrics that are just waiting to become cozy things & knitting is off my list of activities, since I got DeQuervains... so even if I go through periods of slowing down or getting busy, I think I will still be sewing come winter this year.

I just wonder what qualities and feelings are in this Lammas time, where the world is ripe with abundance and yet the tinges of fall and decay are just ever-so-slightly starting to show, that make me think so pointedly of my own consumption and collection of crafting materials?

Maybe it's falling after my birthday month, where I often give myself permission to be a bit more frivolous, that makes me suddenly want to keep it simple and use what I have?

Maybe it's the feeling of summer winding down and the need to shift gears to sew for a new season that feels overwhelming and makes me feel like I need to collect new things to be inspired and prepared?

Whatever it is, there's a certain angsty 'je ne sais quoi' that puts me at odds with sewing when I think about all these things together.  Sometimes, I find it temporarily inspiring to take on a new challenge - stash-busting, stash less, rigid budgets, rigid rules, making lists, capsule wardrobes... they give a temporary invigoration, but they are actually extensions of the angst and malaise.

There is a balance where enough is enough and making brings joy and beauty.  It is out beyond any challenges and self-imposed rules. It's a way of living and being.  A calm sense of purpose that is still open to the unexpected.

So I'm giving myself a non-challenge challenge. I think for about a year-ish.  Nothing hard and fast.  I just want to stop worrying and saving and just really use the beautiful things I have collected without a fear of scarcity or lack of worthiness to use "the good stuff".

I really want to use the fabrics and the patterns that I have already.  I also want to learn more about drafting, altering, and fitting patterns & creating blocks to have trusted, lasting pattern templates.

I have a friend now who knows how to do this. She's been starting to teach me some stuff and its pretty cool... so I would like to be open to exploring that, tracing out my go-to patterns in a more lasting form & really, really perfecting their fit.

There's nothing more comforting to me than using a tried and true pattern. I do like to learn new techniques and constructions processes, but once they've been learned for a certain pattern, it takes a lot anxiety out of the making process not to have to worry about fit & to already understand how the garment goes together... because my body shape is such that lots of tweaks, grading, and shortening are most always required.  Once I know the fit and make of a pattern, I have more freedom to play with the fabric... and that is what I really like to do.

I  don't mind repetition of processes and I also like to wear the same shape of stuff most of the time - fit and flare or babydoll dresses & full midi skirts in woven fabrics are my tried and true favorites.  In my wardrobe, these are the things I can sew better than I can buy & that give me joy when I make them. (Confession: If I can't steam it to a crisp, I'm not going to enjoy making it nearly as much!)

I give myself permission to not push my skills to make a bunch of new types of things.  I also give myself permission to get curious and try new things too.  Like, I made a pair of zipper shorts in June. I haven't blogged them, but I wore them on 4th of July.  They were fun, but they were so hard to fit. Maybe I'll try jeans this year.  Maybe I won't.  I will see how I feel. I will not be attached to results or lists.

Whatever happens, I'm going use the special fabrics, though. The ones that make my heart sing. The ones I've been saving for sometime in the future when I am better, more worthy, more perfect.

No more waiting. Because I'm fine now. Because I'd be happy with a closet full of Brumbys, Veronikas, and Kellys for all seasons in beautiful fabrics.  Because it doesn't really matter what other people are doing or what they think about me and my makes if I have a good time making and wearing them.

I am pretty sure that absolutely no one reads this blog & even if I had readers - my sewing is not my business or livelihood... it's my joy, my happiness, my balance to be a maker.  If that brings you joy to watch, yay.  if not - that doesn't matter.

So at this bittersweet time when we feel the simultaneous peak of abundance and traces of future scarcity or loss... I will just dig in and make stuff with the stuff I have. With no rules. Just curiosity.