Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Scaling Back A Good Bit.........

I made it back from vacation on Sunday and and am feeling pretty refreshed! While away I did my usual fabric store "stalking". I tracked down a few Jo-Ann's and Hancock's while I was in Florida. But I didn't end up purchasing very much. For the last year or so I've noticed I've been scaling back alot on the sewing items (fabric, notions, etc) that I purchase. This has become the new "Norm" for me. I've gotten to the point where

I've realized some important things.....

* I can't possibly have every pattern I want and let alone be able to sew it up.
*I know my body well enough that despite how cute a Vogue pattern may be, if it won't look good on me I'm ok with passing it up.
*There's only so many ways you can re-style a sheath dress or pair of pants so I don't need every new pants and sheath dress pattern. If I want to make changes to it, I can do that on my own.
*Plus my fabric & patter drawers are already overun with fabric and patterns so I need to be super selective of what I decide to cram in them.
.....and so many other TRUTHS!!!

It's funny, I feel as if I've graduated to a newer, more confident level of sewing. I'm able to make better purchasing decisions because of this. I don't know about you guys, but when I first started sewing several years back I bought EVERYTHING!!! I was so excited that I didn't have the know-how to buy good, quality fabrics and to buy figure flattering patterns for myself. In part it was good I bought the fabrics I did (I was pretty good at picking good fabrics on sale) because they served as the foundation of my current fabric stash. For me good fabrics aren't as available as I'd like so it's in my best interest to stock up on them when I run across them. I wasn't as good with selecting patterns and needless to say had to seriously clean out my pattern stash a few years back. Now that I select better patterns for my figure I don't have that problem. It's just nice not to be in that place anymore.

With all of that said, I must showcase the "bargains" that I did run across while on vacation and recently on Fabric.com.

While away I found the following fabric:
(From L to R: Deep blue satin, Pink, Purple, marigold jaquard, brown & white matte jersey)

For the deep blue satin fabric I see a gown in my near future. Preferably one of the retro patterns I have in my stash. The jacquard in the middle was my best find. You may recall in THIS post that I went through a crazy phase of collecting jacquards. Well I'm all too delighted to add these 2.5 yds to my collection. I'm saving this for a cute, short, strapless number. The brown and white knit will make a cute dress or top.

I also found this book at Hancock's....
 I loved the pictures and step by step tutorials on sewing techniques. I have a ton of books but I love to collect. The pictures and clear instructions won me over with this one. Plus it's definitely for seamstresses of all experience levels.

And after running across a GREAT sale on Fabric.Com while on vacation, I purchased this fabric. What do all of these fabrics have in common? They're all STRETCH and have cool PRINTS. Both are my specialties.  I live for printed knits or stretch fabrics!!! I can't wait to use these!!!

(from L to R: Rayon polyester knit, Brown wavy line swimsuit fabric, tan,brown, black white jersey (reminds me of the Oprah logo)

(Beautiful blue fabrics L to R: Blue, black, white geometric prints, Cotton sateen)

And over the last 3 months or so I nabbed the following patterns:
 (There's just something really beautiful about the upper right pattern. It gives me a great reason to use a stunning satin print. That's an opportunity I don't get too often.)

So these are just a few of the recent patterns I nabbed.  I just didn't see too many new patterns worth having.  Even the new Fall Season Butterick's, Vogues, McCall's & Simplicity didn't really catch my eye. As I said before I'm scaling back. But I'm happy for what I did manage to get in the last few months.

How about you? Are you a beginner sewer and are building your stash of fabric or patterns or do you have a well established stash and are scaling back a bit?


  1. I'm so new to sewing, it's not like I've had time to build the biggest stashes of fabric and patterns. Mind you - I have bought a few of each I wouldn't buy again!

    I haven't bought much of either for the last few weeks. I have so much already - and I try to pair patterns to fabric to avoid over-accumulation. It's hard!

    I do need some new muslin - after the muslin work I've done lately. And I wouldn't pass up a couple of yards of good fabric or a couple of patterns.

    Between my books (that come with patterns) and my envelope patterns. I probably have enough things to last me for more than a year.

  2. That was a totally schizophrenic comment. I mean, I don't really need anything but I want lots...

  3. I've been sewing garments only for 3 years and consider myself a beginner and still feeling my way around with fabrics and patterns. However, I am very slowly seeing what fabrics I prefer and patterns that work for me. Great post and am drooling over your fabric haul.

  4. I quilt and I'm using up my stash. I need to simplify and purchase fabric per project. I've got enough stash to have impromptu projects... but I need to concentrate on other things>

    There may be a location move in the near future, so that's factored in as well.

  5. Such wonderful fabric selections, colorful and very useful. I could really see myself sewing those up.

  6. Please make up that Vogue 1195 Badgley Mischka ASAP! For my own selfish reasons, I just want to see it done up because I know this won't work for me but I just love it. I amassed a huge stash of fabric and patterns over the last 2 years. I haven't bought any fabric since Jan./Feb. I still buy several patterns every month but not nearly as many as I used to. After awhile, you realize you essentially already have every pattern there is. I could never sew up every pattern I own...but I can still collect!

  7. My favorite is the top picture, the fabric in the middle.

    I've been getting better about not having to purchase every new pattern and so much fabric, too. My thinking has been the same as yours lately.


  8. You picked up some great fabric on your trip! I'm using fabric and patterns from the stash! There's plenty of unsewn fall fabric from last year to tackle first. And then there's the haul from my latest NYC trip! I really don't need anything except the occasional notion, but I need a certain fabric for a dress I'm dreaming up! What a cycle!

  9. I think I'm a beginner, still working on having a stash...but moving toward a more seasoned sewer who is scaling back. I've noticed I'm more peticular about what fabrics and patterns I purchase lately, and definitely buy more yardage of fabrics I like....before I would buy tiny cuts of a lot of different things...now I have a more project-oriented view of what the fabrics will be used for, and will buy more yardage of less prints LOL

  10. I started knitting about three years ago and have been going through a similar learning process. I aquired a lot of yarns that don't work for me and am slowly figuring things out.

    I've been sewing fashions off and on for thirty-six years. What you sew changes as your body changes and as you know yourself better but what fun when you get to the potential of one pattern stage. It both simplifies things and expands the possibilities. Enjoy.

  11. You've got some really lovely additions to your fabric stash there and some great patterns. I've been sewing, and collecting fabric and patterns, for almost two years now - so I think it's about time to start trying to scale my stash back a bit, but it's hard!

  12. Victoria, I wish I'd known you were going to be in Florida! If you were anywhere close to Tampa, I would have love to meet with you for a "fabric shopping outing" it would have been fun!! You selected beautiful fabrics! I can't wait to see what you do with them!

    I've been so busy at work, I've had no time for sewing lately...but that's about to change!

    I never have a lot of fabric stash, because I always want to sew it up quickly. I think the most I've ever had is what I have right now and that's about 10 pieces. Now my pattern stash is very different...I have patterns back from the early 80's and some of them have actually come back into style! Good luck with your new fabric haul!

  13. Hey Myra, I actually spent 2 nights in Tampa just hanging out with the family going to MOSI & the Florida aquarium. Darn!!!! I could've met up with you had I known you were there. Well there's always next time!

    BTW, good deal on always sewing up your fabric stash. I'd like to get to that point one day. If I could cut my stash in half I'd be a happy woman!

  14. I bought some of the knits from the very same fabric.com sale. And I guess I've been sewing so long that I instinctively know what will work for me and what is just a dream. You are well on your way to getting there too!

  15. I have that pink jaquard and I loved it!! I actually used it for my very first dress and it was super easy to work with.

    Technically I guess you'd say I'm a beginner. However my mom has been sewing for years, so I FEEL as though I have too, lol. While I'm not consciously trying to build a stash I can't resist good sales, therefore my stash is indeed growing. As for patterns, my mom has the basic stuff....I find no need for pants or most tops, however I've been building my own collection of more modern styles.


Thanks so much for taking the time to leave a comment and for following me on my 10,000 Hour Sewing Challenge:)


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