Saturday, January 31, 2009

January end of the month recap

I use to do these monthly recaps regularly in 2007 and then stopped last year figuring that my statistics report on the sidebar worked just as well. Later when I was reviewing some posts in my blog, I found the end of the month recaps and thought I actually liked them better. So this year, I am going to try a mixture of the two.

Let me say that these recaps are primarily for me...since this is my diary! *smile* This year more than any other year since I've been blogging, I need to be consciously aware of how I'm spending my money and what I'm making. Yesterday another person was let go at my job. I work for a small firm...so when one person leaves it's felt acutely...especially when they don't leave of their own volition. Monday one of my closest friends was laid off from another large financial institution. It is getting rough out there and there are no guarantees. So I need to be prudent and fiscally wise...that's my mindframe when viewing my end-of-the-month recaps and fabric purchases.

First, I did break my "no fabric" moratorium for 60 days because not only did I tell Cidell about the faux leather/shearling piece but I also bought six yards of it myself. It is a fantastic piece at an amazing price and after consulting with my Fabric Advisor (Shannon), we decided it was too fabulous to pass up.


At the same time she gave me a great equation to assist me with meeting my fabric buying goal. Which is to acquire no more than 100 yards of fabric this year - this number was not chosen randomly, this is approximately how many yards of fabric I sew each year. I understand this means that whatever I acquire, it will balance out what I make, and will not make a dent into the fabric collection. I'm okay with that. I think before everything is settled with our economy, I'm going to need that fabric collection! *sigh*

Shannon told me that I could purchase 8.33 yards per month and still meet my fabric purchasing goal. Now I don't have to buy fabric every month but it leaves me free to get amazing pieces like that faux leather/shearling without anxiety or guilt. Of course, when I told Marji about the goal she said I could further refine it by only purchasing six yards of fabric a month, thus bringing me under the 100 yard goal...ummm, maybe, I don't know about that yet! But using Shannon's method, I have a 2.33 yard surplus that can be added to February's total...giving me permission to purchase 10.66 yards. Now this doesn't mean that I will...I am still trying not to buy just to buy...but if something AMAZING shows up, I can purchase without guilt!

Now to the stats:

January was a very productive month for me. I finished six new garments and used 16 yards of fabric to do so!!!! One UFO was completed and added to the wardrobe rotation...I made two new skirts and wore both to work this week in fairly cold temperatures...and I found a new way to wear all of my fall/winter wardrobe. Yes, January was a good month indeed!

I am still working on two major products that hopefully will find their way out of the "in-construction" stage and "into my wardrobe" this month. I do want to make a few more separates...a couple more pairs of pants and a dress or two. Already I'm tempering my list because as cold as it is, I can hear the whisperings of spring. The new spring RTW catalogs are arriving in the mail, the websites are being updated and I have been perusing Style.com just a little too frequently on my iTouch! *LOL*

I am looking forward with a cautious optimism...it is the times y'know! But I do have a question. Now don't I always!?! For all of you who made sewing resolutions/lists/guidelines for 2009, how did you do this month?

24 comments:

  1. 100 yards of fabric a year. That sounds like a lot but probably is not. I wonder just how much I buy a year. MMMMMM gives me something to think about. Happy sewing with that shearling.

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  2. I think so far, I'm doing well with my goals. I have been spending at least 30 minutes every day in my sewing room and I've done both my sewing & customer sewing. I have not worked on the other two yet which involve coming up with some TNT patterns for myself, but that will come when I finish the quilt I'm making (has to be done the first week of March)

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  3. I've been trying not to buy any fabric on line, I did go into NYC and bought some yardage, so I missed that great deal on the faux shearling. It would certainly be as close as I'll get to a real shearling jacket, that's for sure. Ah, well. Looking forward to seeing what you make with it.
    About winter sewing, when do you stop sewing for winter and start spring? I have been thinking about this quite a lot lately and wondering if I should skip the rest of winter and just start spring sewing.

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  4. Well, I spent 15.00 in fabrics, 15.00 in pattern and magazines and 25.00 in yarn this month. I have black fabrics in my stash; however I prefer a certain type of fabric to sew pants. I gained a few pounds and I need to make more slacks. I am fine tuning a pants pattern and trying to make it a TNT pattern. I am ok with that considering that it’s less than 10% of my total budget for 2009. Still I congratulate myself, because I though about my purchase carefully and that in itself was a great accomplishment for someone who has been buying books, patterns and fabrics impulsively for 20+ years.

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  5. Whew! I will never catch up to you, Carolyn! My goal for this year, as measely as it looks, is one full garment a month. I finished a shirt for my husband and I am finishing up a lined dress for me today. I WILL finish this up today. It is a very annoying pattern, Vogue 8529, which I had to muslin first in order to fix the neck (make the back neck 2" higher and fix everything else that connects to it, two piece raglan sleeves and all)and the shoulders. I am determined because..it's a new month.

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  6. Well my sewing goal for this year was to sew one item of clothing per week(and the item should be mainly dresses). I have made one dress that still needs to be hemmed(I hate putting in hems). I have finish some things that were cut out from last year, but I'm not including that in my 2009 goal. Hopefully feb. will see more things sewn. I'm working on a tnt dress pattern. The one dress that I've done will be that tnt, but I still need to work on perfecting it.

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  7. Or you could take that 2.33 yards and save it for April. Because, when the Great Fabric Adventure Part Deux hits NYC, we would really love to have you help us find the "finds!" K

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  8. That fabric was a steal. I saw some similar at A Fabric Place this morning for $35 a yard.

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  9. Oh I did make goals and I totally did not make them. I did trace the coat pattern and alter the sleeve to a two piece sleeve. But that's it. If I get the muslin made today that will be progress. g

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  10. That faux leather/shearling was absolutely worth buying! I haven't set any fabric buying goals (other than to spend less and buy less, because we are financially strapped at the moment) but am trying to think a little more before I purchase. I really want to get UFOs completed - I'm trying for one a month - and alter some clothes that were given to me - I'll try for one a month with those as well. We still do need to buy some fabric and stimulate the economy.

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  11. Wow 6 garments this month! Good for you and then I am not surprised either. As to keeping sewing goals, I did achieve one of my goals which was to learn and use a new sewing technique. I did give in though to buying patterns and truly was trying not do that!

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  12. I finished 2 tops for SWAP. I started my lace top project this week, not part of SWAP. I took the Lace Class on PR, we had our last chat this afternoon. I worked on my perennial crosstitch project. I read a couple of chapters in a pattern grading textbook - does that count?

    hmmm. will have to take some production tips from you, Carolyn! 6 garments in 1 month!

    But, I didn't set any specific goals for 2009, either, of any kind. Well, it's not too late, I suppose ;)

    BetsyV

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  13. In this economy we all need to be aware of the what ifs and get as prepared as possible for whatever might be around the corner. On the other hand I often enjoy having those bargain finds stashed that don't make me have tremors when I put the scissors to them. We are partly retired and so far have missed the income ravages that some have experienced. We have never lived in debt so that has been a big help during slow times although it was hard to do without some things when younger. Our investment/work income can vary widely year to year and during slow cycles I go into the stash for what I need or reread the sewing magazines/books that I already own and never feel deprived. In fact this hobby is good cheap entertainment or fufills needs when the cash is short if one is well supplied. On the other hand when having a good year I buy more or whenever I find a great bargain on sewing stuff. Of course we live in a fairly large house on a farm with lots of storage available - might be different in a big city or if I lived in an apartment. I would seriously limit what I wagged home and also if the job situation was iffy. One question- Can you get twice as much yardage in a month if it is half price? What are the rules here. Lol! mssewcrazy

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  14. Good for you keeping that 2.33 yards in reserve for a future moment of weakness. Six garments this month is fabulous - nice work!

    My resolutions are going well. I haven't bought any fabric yet this year (notice I said "yet", 'cause we both know it's bound to happen sooner or later.) However, I haven't exercised as much as I would like, but it was only because I had a nasty cold that kept me off the treadmill for 2 weeks. I'm feeling better though, so I'm getting back in the routine now.

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  15. With my wedding alteration business quiet until mid-Feb I managed to make 2 knit wrap tops (Sandra Betzina)one smocked nightgown, and 3 pair of pants as I just returned home from a 4 day seminar in Portland, Oregon with Pati Palmer and her pants fitting class. Interesting being in a class with 12 women standing around in our underpants waiting to have our paper patterns pinned and fitted before we cut out the fabric. It was conducted in a classroom in Fabric Depot just on the outskirts of town. While I was there they were selling some of the shearling lamb fabric like you have bought but with snakeskin on the opposite side. I resisted as I am dying for spring!

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  16. Two of my main goals were to sew with a plan and fit a woven blouse. I am pleased to say that I started and made significant progress on both. I made my sewing plan and finished one of two tops on which I started working. Even though I made a couple of changes to my storyboard, I am happy to see that I'm making progress.

    As for the fitted woven blouse, I think I am closer than I've ever been with Kwik Sew 3620. I am going to show my muslin to one more person to get their opinion. If all is good, then I am ready to cut out of fashion fabric and make this blouse a TNT.

    I'm not too good with updating my blog or adding reviews on PR because of time. I hope to do so soon.

    Lynn

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  17. I didn't buy any yardage this month so I'm doing great on my goals. I want to fabric fast until I visit NY in March. Also part of my goal was to sew more. I made 4 garments and an accessory. Not bad, but I hope to do more this month. My other goal is to sew more from pattern magazines and keep working on knock-offs.

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  18. I love the faux shearling! I really can't wait to see what you make with it.

    I didn't put myself on a fabric diet this year, which is good because I picked up several yards the other day - I couldn't help myself... my wardrobe is in need of some new clothing!

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  19. I don't think I could keep track. I love to buy fabric.

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  20. I think that shearling was a perfectly justifiable purchase - there's fabric you buy just because, and then there's fabric that will haunt you if you don't buy it, and that's what the shearling wouldh have been.

    I didn't really make many resolutions for this year - I am trying a "no fabric until April" theme and I carried through with that in January (not even any linings or notions, because I had them in stash), and I successfully tackled my first welt pockets, which were actually a 2008 resolution as well.

    So I'm pretty happy with 2009 so far. The only resolution I'm blowing is less time on the computer, more time in the sewing room.

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  21. I just started a new blog a few days ago to keep up with my sewing goals. I have been sewing for awhile but totally avoided zippers, buttonholes, welt pockets, well anything I deemed hard. Now I am forcing myself to tackle these things on a monthly basis to get myself out of my comfort zone. I have a nice size stash so I am on a fabric diet also but I can purchase if it is project specific or a really great deal.

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  22. I made a resolution to only spend $75.00 a month os fabric and notions. I honoured my pledge for Jan. but only because everything at Fabricville where I work was at rock bottom prices.I'm still brinnging home more than I use up . I haven't ever kept count of the metres in and out but it might be interesting to keep a ledger for a while.

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  23. I didn't even get around to resolutions let alone blogging or sewing. Not to worry. You are doing really well. Your dress in the next post is a great combination of fabrics.

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  24. Carolyn, I shamelessly copied the monthly recap idea for my blog, hope you don't mind.

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