Thank you all for your comments on my last post about balancing my sewing time and keeping things fun. While Mr. Made insists that I was just seeking out reinforcement (so what!), I think you also helped clarify my thinking and explore more of the exact nature of why I've been feeling overwhelmed with sewing. As a follow-up, I have boiled down my feelings to a few key points:
Work clothes are stressing me out. Every few years that I change jobs or decide I need to be "more professional," I need a change in wardrobe. This is hard to keep up with on the sewing front, and means I haven't had as many options to wear to work. And when it comes down to it, making button-up shirts or fitting a new trousers pattern just isn't that fun to me. I think the solution in this case is to just go out and buy a few key work pieces and call it a day. And who knows, maybe buying some clothes will inspire new sewing projects.
I do like sewing "basics." While I talked about how sewing sometimes feels like I burden, I genuinely do enjoy making my own jeans, bras, and other necessities. The cost is less, the fit is better, and I like making and wearing them. I also don't tend to wear dresses very often, as it's a bit chilly in SF and I ride a bike most everywhere. So while I may not be sewing my work trousers or sweater sets, I do still plan on making some jeans and bras and tops in the coming months. I'm hoping making some fun "every day" type stuff will keep my happy.
Though shall not covet. In my original article, I compared myself to a pioneer woman loaded down with mending and sewing. While that is certainly undesirable, I think we would do well to remember some things about early women and society in general. Namely, they consumed less and, we are told, took life at a less frantic pace. I must remember that I do not have to have everything I covet right now and in endless amounts; it is important to slow down and enjoy the things I have. Our consumerist culture sometimes makes me feel like I must have all the things, but sewing helps remind me that each article of clothing requires thought and time, whether purchased or sewn.
To mark this shift in thinking, this past weekend I loaded up on some fun materials at the Bay Area Sewists fabric swap and subsequent shopping trip at Stone Mountain. Jeggings, a cocoon coat, and some pretty silk tops are in my future. I also had some time to roam around Berkeley, and ended up buying (gasp!) some graphic tees, which I love to wear but hate making. This marks my first new purchase in over a year, but Mr. Made will appreciate that I have stopped stealing his shirts now.
Thank you all for the support on this sewing adventure! By sticking to making a few key, fun pieces and giving myself permission to fill in the gaps with store-bought clothes, I think I will have saved my sewing sanity.