I promise…I actually did sew something in this story. I was working on this hoodie- McCall’s 7841. I altered the pattern to give it a peephole at the bust and also shortened it to crop it a little bit. My sew sister gifted me a camo knit fabric and I had juuust enough to make it. Camo is my FAV!! As usual, I sew in segments…so I do what I can for whatever amount of time Mini Me lets me be great…seriously! It can be a couple of days to finish something simple to a month or more since I do have a full time job and my little diva on my hands.
One day Mini Me faked sickness at school, so I took off early to pick her up. She was feeling so bad in the office but by the time we got home she was skipping and singing la la la up the stairs. That little girl nor her teacher care about my dwindling PTO! I didn’t mind too much because I really wanted to finish this hoodie!
Since we were home earlier than usual, we started her homework so we could have our time together…and then finally finish my hoodie. While I was checking her work in my room, I hear the pitter patter of her little feet running back and forth across our apartment. I could see her in my peripheral but wanted to finish checking her math before I summoned her. However, she beat me to it and comes running toward me waving her arms in the air yelling ‘EMERGENCY! EMERGENCY!’ She points toward the kitchen and when I walk in, the whole garbage can is on fire! It turns out she lit a paper towel (I was cooking soup on the stove) and threw it in the garbage. Why? I don’t know…she didn’t even know when I asked…after I put the fire out. The pitter patter of her little feet was her getting cups of water from the bathroom and running to the kitchen to throw at the garbage. Bless her little heart!
There is a silver lining. Now she learned how fire works, that plastic melts, we can get a nice new metal garbage can and how a fire extinguisher works. Nope, it’s not full of water folks. I was cleaning all sorts of chemical dust…while my hoodie lie all lonely and unfinished on my sewing table LOL. I didn’t think of taking pictures of the mess since I was busy trying to stay alive. I eventually did finish the hoodie…just not that day. The picture below is of me actually wearing it in the gym (my second home). Sewing and fitness are a couple of things that I do for myself. If I’m not in the gym upgrading my milf status, I’m probably talking about it here. I plan to make more hoodies soon. Hopefully, I will not have to put out any more fires👀👀
I saved some of my vacation time until the end of the year and I made it! I had been looking forward to using this time to do some research on some recent UFO sightings…in my closet. Yes, in my closet; I have a bin full of UnFinished Objects.
Like your conventional Unidentified Flying Objects, many sewists start projects and for whatever reason, we are no longer able to identify the object we had once envisioned. I wanted to use some of my vacation time to remove some of those UFOs out of my closet hangar. (I love puns)! This was no easy task, being that my 4 year old mini me was also home from Pre-K for Winter Break (which was my real reason for saving my PTO for the end on the year). I’ll post more about that another time. #schoolwinterbreakisnotavacation
Outside of our quality time, I did have a couple of productive moments. I was able to finish several projects, including some UFOs I’ve actually been wearing for the past year! There were some minor things that no one would notice unless I pointed them out, like waiting a year to hem a couple of tunics. Finishing the hem sometimes makes a difference in appearance like buying your garments from Old Navy versus Rainbow.
McCall’s Patterns M6121
Isn’t that what we do anyway? We go out as our unfinished selves for the world to see, except the world doesn’t notice (because nobody cares unless you point it out). So in honor of the new year and the motivation for self improvement that it inspires, I’ve compiled my Top 5 Reasons why UFOs exist:
- Something about the project didn’t go as expected (i.e., fabric didn’t work well, wrong fit, human error, etc.)
- Ran out of time
- Overlooked Details (I had a tweed cape I couldn’t finish because my machine couldn’t handle making buttonholes with that fabric. Buttonholes are usually the last detail on a buttoned garment. Just horrible!)
- Lost interest (Sometimes you weren’t that interested to start in the first place.)
- External Events (better known as LIFE!!) (Things that had nothing to do with the project itself, but rather affected time dedicated to complete the project.)
These reasons aren’t just specific to sewing; they’re transferable to whatever your unfinished object is. (Well the buttonhole example is pretty specific lol. ) Sometimes you need a pair of fresh eyes like when Monica, The Sewing Jurist suggested I use sew-in snaps after I vented about it on our sew date. It worked like gang busters! Thanks Monica! My UFOs have taught me to expect the unexpected, use time management and planning strategies as I discussed in a previous post, and last but not least, really taking the time to consider your motivation for starting a project or endeavor. Knowing that helps to stay the course when life happens. What are some of your UFOs and how do you plan to finish them?
Happy New Year!
Sewing is my crack. Actually, if people really knew how many GB of RAM my brain uses for sewing and related creative activities, they’d wonder why I have such a limited wardrobe. My coworkers can probably guess my outfit for the next day because my business casual dress is even more scarce. Oh she’s wearing the navy pixie pants today; it must be Tuesday. This raises the question, if I think about sewing all day, then why do I have sew few clothes?!
The number one answer is TIME!! While sewing takes up a lot of my mental space, the amount of time I have to actually sew is limited mainly by two things: 1). my day job and 2). my mini me. So between my child plotting to take over the world, managing a career and having some semblance of self care (which includes sewing) and a social life, I realized I needed to get more organized. I have found the following steps helpful in getting my ideas out of my head and onto my body (or my mini me).
- Pick out several patterns at a time. I pick out several projects I want to make in the immediate future and narrow it down to 2-3. This immediate future list is ever changing, so I find that having one at bat, one on deck and one in the hole helps to make my plans more concrete and keeps me focused.
- Arrange patterns by degree of difficulty (i.e., number or steps/ time to prep/ notions needed, etc.) I work on easier projects during the week. Those that are more involved, I break up into smaller steps (see steps 3 and 4 below) to work on over the weekend, so it’s more manageable to finish during the week.
- Make pattern adjustments and pretreat fabric (if necessary). I usually do this on weekend in case I need to get extra fabric or notions based on whatever changes I need to make to the patterns that I have lined up. (This also helps me to have a plan when going to the fabric store which I will touch on in the future 😜)
- Cut and mark fabrics for your chosen patterns. This is also something I try to save for the weekend as this tends to be pretty time consuming (especially when you have to keep the scissors away from the super helpful mini me who is always ready to be of assistance).
- Sew! Sew! Sew! Once you’re ready to sew, you’re pretty much done!
These are just a few of the things that have helped me to make the time I do make to sew more productive. I get my creative juices flowing while raising the vig on the wagers in the office wardrobe pool. What do you do to make your sewing time more productive?