October – moving fast and sewing slow

Let’s all say it together: “How can it already be October?!?!”

Where did 2016 go? In some ways I feel like it was JUST Me-Made-May and the day before that I was setting my 2016 ReSEWlutions. The year has flown by with some major changes and I find myself with a surprising amount of alone time to reflect on the year and make time for myself and my hobbies.

I’ve decided that October is the month that I get back on the fitness horse and the month that I reconnect with the heart and mission of my sewing. 

Moving Fast with Vibe Body

Instagram is full of visual monthly challenges, including many created by the sewing community. Despite struggling to keep up with #SewPhotoHop in September, I am taking on an October Challenge with a Seattle fitness group called Vibe Body. Every weekday in October the women at Vibe Body are sharing a 10-minute or less cardio/strength workout that can be done anywhere. (Well, anywhere you don’t mind getting sweaty and awkwardly out of breath.)

I know that in order to really get back into shape and feel physically strong again, I will need more than 10-mintue workouts. But the structure of the Vibe Body October Challenge is “excuse proof” — they are offering short workouts that don’t require equipment. All I need is an internet connection. Also, a couple of my friends are doing it as well and hopefully will keep me accountable.

The first workout was a little bit of dance, a little boot-camp-esque, and a little step-aerobics. I liked it. Even if my cat was alarmed by my stomping and jumping. If this interests you, you can still sign up through the link above.

Sewing Slow with Fringe Association

I learned about Karen Templer at www.fringeassociation.com from the October Seamwork issue. This is the second year of Slow Fashion October and I am definitely tuning in this year. If you are interested to learn more, she is just getting started with her weekly themes.

I really appreciated what Karen is focusing on in her most recent post (October 3, 2016), owning what she owns and making her clothes last. She wrote about four garments that she is trying to make wearable. Her goal instantly reminded me of a couple pieces in my closet that are almost wearable, and could be if I just put some thought and work into them. (More on these in a future post.) More importantly, it reminded me of my husband’s clothes and what I do (and don’t do) for them.

Appropriately, but coincidentally, I organized a mending party this past weekend for some friends come over to mend and alter clothes. I was hoping to share some of the knowledge and skills I’ve accumulated. (And it always helps to reinforce one’s knowledge by trying to teach or explain it to others, coherently.) Unfortunately there is a cold going around the Seattle area and most of my friends had to cancel. By the end of the day I took care of 4 mending tasks and we got three shirts pinned for Brandi. I call it a success.

I’ve started working on my Fall/Winter sewing project list and I’m trying hard to reduce my stash and make garments that are going to last (both in physical durability and by matching greatest number of outfits possible). I’m latching onto all this talk about slow fashion because I do feel like I have strayed a bit from my original sewing mission, which was rooted in social responsibility and environmental sustainability. While I do think I still achieve those goals to some degree, I know I could pay more attention to where my fabrics come from and how they were manufactured.

I have an unfinished blog post titled “Frustrated with Fast Sewing” that came out of my frustrations with having a hard time finding complex and challenging sewing tutorials on Pinterest, I feel like everything is made for beginning sewists. That might not actually be true. Nevertheless, I think my frustration and Karen’s Slow Fashion October are coming from similar places. Maybe the sewing community has reached a point that we are big enough that we can finally move beyond just helping each other learn to sew and start really, truly using our sewing to change the world.

Looking Ahead to October

I am excited about October. I don’t have a clear goal for this post or for this month. All I can promise is that this is a month for myself. A month to take stock of my priorities; a month to sew for myself; a month to rebuild my physique; a month of compassion for myself and where I am in life.

Happy October, lovely readers and friends!

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