Tuesday, January 9, 2018

2018 goals and changes

You wouldn't know it by reading my 2017 statistics post, but I am actually drawn to slow fashion and minimalism.  I read a lot of blog posts promoting slow fashion and find myself vigorously nodding my head at the idea that stashing tons of discount fabric and sewing a garment a week is just a different form of fast fashion.  But I also enjoy sewing too much to limit myself to a project a month. I don't have any guilt about the 46 garments I sewed myself last year because I really did need that much clothing, and I wear the overwhelming majority of the clothes I sewed frequently.  But going forward, assuming my proportions don't change too much, does my wardrobe really need 46 additional garments every year?  I don't think so.

As it turns out, the Itinerant Family will be experiencing some big changes in 2018, and as a result, I've been handed a ready-made set of sewing goals.

Image result for colombian flag

We are moving to Colombia in a few months!  I'll have no choice but to sew fewer garments this year as I'll be separated from my machines for about three months during the transition. We'll be in Bogota for two years for my husband's work.

The impending move has informed my sewing over the last few months, and it will continue to do so through 2018.  Although Bogota is only a few hundred miles from the Equator, the city sits at 8661 feet, so it's not exactly warm.  But it's not exactly cold either, with the year-round daytime high somewhere around 65F.  I assume that I will be wearing a lot of woven button-down shirts (something that I considered as I sewed all those Bonn shirts.  And I will also need more jeans.

Liana Stretch Jeans PDF Sewing Pattern Product HeroGinger Skinny Jeans pattern // Envelope Front // Closet Case Patterns

So, Sewing Goal #1: Make one pair of bootcut jeans from the Itch to Stitch Liana pattern that I already bought.  Make another pair of skinny jeans, either from the Liana or from the Ginger pattern, depending on how the first pair of Lianas works out.

I know that layering is key in Bogota's climate, so the closet full of cardigans I've made over the past two years will serve me well.  A few of those were less successful than the others, and I've always been a cardigan lover, so I'm not going to feel bad about sewing more cardigans this year.

McCall Pattern Company M6996 Misses' Jackets and Belt, Size ZZ (Large-X-Large-XX-Large)

Sewing Goal #2: Make another cardigan before we move, using McCalls 6996, which is already in the stash.

Although the weather in Bogota is not particularly warm, apparently the apartments there do not have central heat.  Our apartment floors are tile, and there are lots of big windows, so it's going to be chilly indoors.  One of the two pairs of pajama pants I own is on its last legs, so I'd like to make two more pairs for myself before we move.

Picture 1 of 1

Sewing Goal #3: I have Simplicity 1563 in the stash already, so I'll probably use that for at least one pair.  I may make a knit pair for the second one; I've previously used this pattern and tutorial to make a pair and they are the only pair I have that is still in useable shape.

Sewing Goal #4: Be more purposeful and restrained in my fabric purchases.  I did a major stash purge in March 2017, and after that I vowed to only buy that which I had a plan for within the next couple of months.  From March through December, I purchased 31 cuts of fabric, and I've used all or part of 23 of those cuts.  In all cases I did have plans to use the fabric within the next few months, but sometimes plans change for valid reasons.  For example, in October, I wasn't able to find the dresses I wanted the girls to wear for Christmas this year.  So I bought two cuts of silk taffeta on sale from Fabric Mart to make the dresses.  But after I did that, the dresses turned up, and the taffeta ended up in the stash.  In another scenario, I bought some crepe to make this pattern.  But when I muslined the pattern, I didn't like it at all on me.  I am content with my fabric purchases and usage these past nine months.  I'd like to continue this way, instead of buying fabric just because I like it, without a purpose.

That's all for now.  I know that my sewing goals will evolve after we've been in country for awhile, and I'm leaving space for those goals.  I am sure I will sew more than two pairs of jeans, two pairs of pj pants, and a cardigan before we leave, but I'm leaving room for creativity and impulse.  They make sewing fun, and I don't want to sew without them.

Thanks for reading, and I'll see you next time.  In the interim, if you know anything about Bogota or Colombia or sewing in Bogota, drop me a comment.  I'm all ears!


  1. That sounds like a big adventure (and a bit daunting)! Look forward to updates and photos. Are your kids excited?

    1. They're not super-excited to leave their cousins and friends, but I'm hoping the transition isn't too difficult.

  2. Those are great sewing goals, especially with such a big move on the horizon! I'm a big fan of purposeful sewing, and purposeful purchasing. I do a lot of these things myself (although I did inherit some fabric lengths from a friend recently that swelled my stash a smidge; I plan to sew summer dresses for the girls with them, so they aren't without purpose) :)

    Best of luck with the big move!!

  3. Wow, you’ve got some excitement on the horizon! Your sewing plans sound great. I know you’ve got lots of Bonn shirts that will be perfect for your new climate! I am excited to see what you make before you move and to hear about your life in a new country!

  4. Congrats on the move!

    Sewing 23/31 cuts of fabric is pretty darned good I'd say! I hear you on buying/stashing more purposefully. I'm not into Fast fashion/sewing but I'm not anti either. I like having a large wardrobe but I am leaning more towards creating MORE that is meant to have real longevity. Not that there won't be any trendy/one-off/fun things but I'm hoping to slow myself down.

  5. How exciting!!! Congrats!! Great goals and perspective! Fwiw my lianas are straight, not bootcut, but I can wear my boots under them/they are a little bunchy for wearing boots over them. I have started thinking of the cut as a baby boot cut.

  6. Yet another move! I hope it will go smoothly. I like your plans and I feel the same about a lot of things you talk about!

  7. How exciting - I am looking forward to hearing all about Bogota! and your sewing plans sound very sound.

  8. Wow, I am so happy I get to keep reading about your sewing adventures in Bogota! 65 everyday? That reminds me of my home (you know, sometimes it's more like 56 or 75 but it's usually in that range) in maritime Northern California! You're going back to being "itinerant." Your goals for the new year are awesome, btw.

  9. check out youtube's "lifting pins and needles". She has lived and moved around SA quite a lot I think.

  10. I'm getting ready to do a 'buying fabric w/o a purpose b/c I like it'....because it we're getting ready to leave Fiji....so it will be Bula fabric....and I won't be able to get it so inexpensively ever again.....

    1. I would definitely do that too! I can't believe your tour is nearly over.


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