Saturday, September 13, 2008

How Much Is Too Much?

Time... it's been on my mind lately, and Belinda's comment on my last post just illuminated it. Thank you Belinda, I needed that extra push to explore the possibilities.

Am I spending too much time on each garment I make?
I know, I know, this is very subjective, so I'm basically asking myself :)) But feel free to chime in with any thoughts you have on this subject.
After being part of the blog-world for many months now, I realize the majority of my fellow sewers are far more productive than I am (did you check out all Melissa has churned out recently???)

To find the answer I first needed to define what my sewing objectives are, and this is what it boils down to:

Becoming= Fit and design
Fit has been top priority for a while and I've reached the 'fairly capable' stage.  And, since form follows function, the designs I select are, as a result, more deliberate. What this means; fit and design comes together reasonably fast.

Unique (can't buy)= Details
The first part of this process is usually all about planning design details, which can range anywhere from simple surface design, to the more complex, e.g. making the fabric (dye/paint/felt). The second part always includes a lot of tweaking during construction, and sometimes- if I made too many wrong choices- a complete overhaul.

So comparing the two objectives,  details is the big time-gulper. No surprise of course, and there's not much I can do about it without compromising the very thing that draws me to it in the first place. But...

After taking another look... Within the details- deeply hidden, out of sight from anyone- lays the obsession factor. I don't like to admit it, but I am a perfectionist. And none of my garments are perfect and never will be- in anyone's eyes. What am I referring to is the quest for it, which steals away my time. And it's so not worth it.

So, to answer the question: Yes, I believe I'm spending too much time on each garment. And that's why I'm making an early New Years resolution:

From this day forward I will do my best to eliminate time spent on details/construction where the result will not be seen.

Only time :)) will tell if this is even possible, and whether or not it will make me more productive, but I got to at least try. Cause really, who wants to waste time?!

Thank you for lending an ear.


  1. Like you, I have to force myself not to go too far down that road. Sometimes I just need to make a few quick and easy things so that I can put all the special details into a more special garment (even the ones that can't be seen)

  2. I too have to force myself not to get too wrapped up into things. Yes there is a time and place for this on our garments, but it's also okay to make simpler things that offset the complicated ones. I suffer from paralysis of analysis and totally over analyze everything so I'm not sure I follow my own advice well. BTW, my "productive" sewing I posted was not all done in only a few days, I'd just been a slacker about posting. :-)

  3. Oh Birgitte, I hope you didn't take my comment as a bad thing. I meant it as a compliment. I admire the fact you put so much time into your garments. As a fellow sewer I understand how much effort must go into your garments re the planning and execution. It's because of this that they are so creative, unique and beautiful. I do understand though. Sometimes it's nice to whip something up without it feeling like a marathon. I hope you can find a balance between the two. Love your work!