Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Sewing Top 5 - Reflections, Goals & Highlights

I just had a read through last year's reflections and goals post, and it made me laugh a bit. I had very low expectiations for the year, it seems, mostly because I had just started a rather demanding new job. I'm glad to say that, looking back, it turned out to be a pretty good year nonetheless. :-)
Reflections

1. Looking at last year's goals, as undemanding as they were, I did pretty well. I kept sewing, made some trousers and two pairs of jeans, got cracking on that bathing suit, and I did actually get a new battery for my camera remote (and then replaced the remote, since it still wasn't working). I even got a few decent outfit pics (which you haven't seen yet, because I haven't blogged about those garments yet). I also did blog occasionally. Yay! ;-)

2. I went on a bit of a blogging hiatus during the summer months, because work was crazy and the weather was decent, so other things took precedence. 15 blog posts for the year still average more than one per month, so I'm not totally crushed.

3. Sewing wise, it also was a much better year than I thought! I counted 29 sewn garments (of which 16 are still unblogged). Three of those sewing-for-others. 15 were dresses (including a toddler dress for my goddaughter), 5 were tops (including a shirt for my stepdad and a pullover for my sister), 3 trousers, 3 pairs of knickers, 2 skirts and one bathing suit. That's actually only one garment away from my count for 2014, and I'll stick with the impression that it's a sustainable number for me - enough new garments to not get bored, without letting my wardrobe overflow! I also did some knitting, mostly Christmas presents (cowls and mittens, this year) and one Miette cardigan for myself!

4. I started keeping an excel sheet with my fabric buys and the yardage I sewed this year, with the vague goal of only buying as much new fabric as I was sewing up. That didn't quite work out. On the fabric acquisition side I bought 51.3 meters of fabric, and I sewed 35.7 meters, of which 23.7 meters were from already existing stash and 12 meters from new fabric. It's really interesting, though, to see how much I actually buy and how much I sew. I don't feel too bad about not meeting my goal, and I'm really happy that I managed to sew up so much stash fabric.

5. Apart from not blogging regularly, I also had a hard time keeping up with the online sewing community. Blog reading and commenting came very low on my list of extracurriculars, and the only community/challenge thing I participated in was Me-made May.

Goals

1. Since I'm back at the doctor's office (orthopaedics at the moment) and my daily commute has shortened from 1.5h to about 20 mins, I'm thinking this year will be a lot more relaxed than the last one. I'd love to take part in a couple of challenges (the German online sewing community has weekly Me-made Wednesdays, and I really like this Bread&Butter project) and I really want to get back into blogging and commenting more regularly!

2. My fabric shelves are fuller than ever. Still, I really love me a piece of new fabric now and then. So I've decided that I'm allowed to buy a new meter of fabric for every two meters that I sew from my stash. I'm also going to try and find some local sewists for a fabric exchange. That really shouldn't be too hard in Berlin, right?

3. I've actually never taken a sewing class before, but I recently saw that one of the local sewing studios has a lingerie class. I'd love to take a class on bra making this year!

4. I feel a bit ridiculous saying this, but I've been meaning to sew myself a handbag (or two) for... almost as long as I've been sewing? I have a collection of at least 10 bag patterns. I have several canvas fabrics put aside for the purpose. I've been collecting notions (without a concrete plan in mind, so I'm sure I'm still missing some...). But that new dress/top/garment has always been more important! I'd like to make a bag this year.

5. I'd also like to get this blog updated a bit. Especially the "Handmade Closet" part has been sadly neglected for the last couple of years and I wouldn't mind an updated design (even though I still like the polka dots after more than 5 years...).

Highlights

What does it say about me that I could pretty much copy and paste last year's highlights in here and it would still mostly be true? I guess I'm a bit boring and predictable in the things that make my life a happy place. On the other hand, my life is a happy place and that alone is pretty awesome. :-) So...

1. The people around me. B., the handsome love of my life who makes me ridiculously happy just about every day. My family, who are supportive and fun and who I love spending time with. My friends, who are all just a wee bit extraordinary in their own way.

2. Stories. Most of my hobbies floundered a bit this year, but I think I read more than usual, both because of the long commute and because reading in bed (or in the bathtub) is such a fantastic way to relax and wind down after an exhausting day.

3. Travelling. I went on quite a few trips in 2015, though mostly around Germany. Weimar turned out to be a beautiful city, we spent a few days on the Baltic island of Usedom, went on a wine tasting trip to Volkach/Würzburg and visited B.'s family in Wiesbaden, spent half a day in Erlangen, and of course we spent some time at my parents' and went on a short trip to Italy.

4. My job. Even though working on the Geriatric ward was exhausting, stressful and challenging at times, I learned a lot and I think I grew both as a person and a doctor.

5. The little things. I managed to grew some tomatoes and even two small pumpkins on my balcony. I tucked some coffee dates and dinners with friends in whenever I could. There was a bit of knitting and even some short story writing, and a couple of rather amazing choir concerts that I took part in.

So yup, all things considered, I think 2015 was a pretty good year. Let's see what 2016 brings. :-)

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