Wednesday, August 7, 2013

I know, I know

Things have... not been going.
I got home from CoCo last night, and it was a GREAT event, but there was a moment when I was packing when I was so desperately unhappy about the amount of sewing I have not done that I was in tears. I managed to put together a bunch of good costumes despite this, but I still feel awful - I made one outfit for our awesome group costume (and I'll post more about that later) but I honest-to-God haven't had time to really SEW anything.

I've finished a bunch of unfinished things (and boy-howdy do I have a lot of unfinished things), but nothing new. (Butterfly blouse, two aprons, the old 1950's kit, the Kentwell English Fitted Gown.) I've even got a pile of things that will never be completely done (pre-making aiglets, making stuffed-fabric buttons, lucet cord) and it's just... unsatisfying. 

I'm posting this because I feel like I need to get this out, that I'm about to start unfollowing some people because I find myself actively resenting the amount of time and motivation you find to sew. (I probably won't, but it's just a sort of cry-for-help, I-need-you-to-understand-where-I'm-coming-from statement. When your reaction to some of your friends is "oh geeze, another gorgeous gown, and I still can't even figure out if I'm the same size as when I started this one, oh crap..." it's maybe time to step back and reconsider.

It's the social aspect. It really is. I suck at holing up in my cramped, dark apartment by myself to sew. I can force myself to do it, but what I really want to do is hang out with other people... which means I hang out on the internet.  Which means I get no sewing done. I get no exercise. I feel like crap.

And then I feel guilty about it and go months between posts. :(


  1. I so very rarely comment on blogs, especially on those blogs which are written by people that I don't know, but I felt that this post warranted a response.

    I know how you feel. Well, not EXACTLY, because I haven’t experienced quite the same emotions as you, but I’ve been through a similar sort of struggle. And you know what? It’s ok.

    I went to CoCo last year for the first time. I was VERY excited because I’d seen pictures for years and it really looked like an awesome time. I stressed and stressed over what I was going to wear and flew across the country to get there.
    I had a good time, truly. But I found myself feeling incredibly out of place, I felt physically uncomfortable in the clothes I was wearing, and I kept escaping to my room. I also found myself resenting those who make the most wonderful things effortlessly in only a handful of days, while it takes me months to make something. I discovered that while I like the look of beautiful things I didn’t like to wear them. I don’t like to wear a “costume” I like to wear historical clothing. I found that whenever I sew 18th century clothing is my priority and anything else gets bumped to the back of the line. I have a beautiful blue silk 1880s gown that’s rolled into a ball right now because I want to work on my wool and linen reenacting gowns.

    The costuming community is not where I feel comfortable. I’m a reenactor and my sewing reflects that and the more I tried to force myself into the costumer role the more unhappy I was with my sewing and myself. I may go to CoCo again someday but only if I really want to.

    So this was a very roundabout way of saying that sewing is supposed to be fun and relaxing. None of us should feel pressure to be or do something that simply isn’t us or doesn’t fit into our lifestyles. Embrace the parts that work for you and discard the things that make you unhappy. It’s really ok.

    1. Hi Laura. :) I had to do a double take when I read the comment email, because I thought Blogger had sent me a copy of my own post.

      Thanks for your words of support - it means a lot to me to know other people have the same struggles. But I think my problem is a bit different, in that I'm unhappy because I'm not *creating*, not because I feel pressured to create.

      Hearing your account of Costume College makes me really sad, because it wasn't always like that. (I've been going on and off since... 2003?) There's a clique that's formed that's had, IMO, more than their fair share of influence on the culture and atmosphere of the event. There are, shall we say, ground swell plans in progress. The place used to be more friendly to the historically-focused, and I hope to help make it that way again.

  2. So I *tried* to respond to this last night. Except it appears that my iPad hates Blogger... :P

    Anywho. I am up for evening Skype Sew Alongs whenever you want them honey. I really enjoyed the one we fit in prior to CoCo this year and, while it isn't as awesome as having you around in person, I know what it is like trying to sew in a vacuum (The Suck, it is horrible).

    Besides, additional chances to plot for the Revolution!

    /semi-nationalistic anthems playing in the back ground to the knock-knock-knock accompaniment of my ancient Kenmore...