Fresh Starts and Wish Lists

Happy Happy October! I love this month. It cools off, the weather is gorrrgeous, the roses come back out to play. It’s my favorite time of year and alright, I’m not totally unbiased. I’m an October birthday.

It’s a few weeks away but I’m already starting on my wish list. Here’s one fantasy…

Have you seen this beauty? It’s not in production but a finalist in this year’s James Dyson Awards. UK university student Sarah Dickens designed her “Alto” as a basic make-do-and-mend machine. (I love the name, too–I’m an alto!)

This would be an awesome Kickstarter project. About time someone made the “Mac” of sewing machines, right? You can read about the Alto and watch a video of it in use at Ecouterre. (Thanks Steph for the link!)

Wish list aside, I like fresh starts and I almost always hit the reset button on a lot of things in October. Maybe it’s that beginning-of-school-year feeling. And I have a confession for this new year… Over the summer I got bored with blogging. Maybe restless is a better word. Every time I went to write a post, I’d write and rewrite sentences 15 times before I’d blast the whole thing and assign it to blog draft purgatory. There are a lot of lonely ideas in there that would like to be free. A month-long break from blogland helped, but I still wanted a bit more focus, perhaps some new direction. Up till this point I’ve written mostly about personal sewing projects. The problem is, I start to feel pulled and nagged by a project queue, rushing toward the finish line just to have something to blog about and that’s no fun, is it? Blogging is an art in itself and I want to get better at that.

So sat down for a few hours and wrote out some thoughts about the topics I like, where I’d love to go with this whole blogging-sewing-fashion-thing and how to keep a natural rhythm with it. And one thing really stood out to me. I LOVE to teach, and more than half of my blog ideas were teaching about sewing and designing, not just sharing my own makes. I spend far more time experimenting with patterns and fabrics than finishing them because I love to learn more than I want finished clothes. I love the process of problem-solving, too, and my constant instinct is to help others solve problems. But teaching is a skill and I need to sharpen it.

So to that end I’ve just initiated a local sewing workshop with friends. It’s still in the planning stages but I’m so excited about this! I’d like to bring that here too by sharing some of my own patterns, technique tutorials, re-fashioning. And I heard y’all about the bra-making sew-along. It’s in the works! Friends, that will really sharpen my scissors.

I’m going to start simply this week, with a new weekly post called “Lingerie Friday” featuring some of my favorite designs with a big sprinkle of DIY. I like having a little something to hang my hat on each week no matter what I’m working on.

And thank you to all my readers and friends for following thus far–you are amazing people and I hope that what I express here can be a source of refreshment for you.


  1. Maddie says:

    isn’t it great once you have a clear direction of things? I had that back in February and since then, it’s been smooth sailing with my blog. Once I knew what my blog’s FOCUS was, finding post ideas was SO SIMPLE.

    I can’t wait for the lingerie sew-a-long, I can’t wait for fashion Friday’s, and I can’t wait to see what Cloth Habit will become!

  2. Sallie says:

    This is really exciting, Amy! Fresh starts are necessary – we change and grow, and so should our creative outlets. I SO wish I could attend your sewing workshops – I bet they’re a blast. But, as it is, I’m totally excited about Lingerie Friday’s and Bra Sew-along’s and tutorials and patterns (!!) Also – love the sewing machine – people always underestimate beautiful design. But Mac should totally have proved how much people crave form AND function in their “utilities”. And I’m also an alto (well sometimes I actually think I’m a baritone, but…)

    • Amy says:

      Haha, sometimes I think Nina Simone was a baritone. Maybe I am too. I hear ya on the form/function thing–I guess there is a “utility” aesthetic that makes people feel practical but takes all the fun out of life. (I sacrifice function over form all the time–I have a Bug–but it’s my ride, man!)

      But seriously, we need to meet some time. It’s not that far, I have no excuse!

  3. Heather Lou says:

    I’m glad you’re getting your blogjo back and I am stoked for all your plans (your local workshop sounds familiar – I was thinking of starting a beginner’s one here in Monty for all the women I know who are curious to start sewing but don’t know how to begin). And holy cow, BRA SEWALONG! YES PLEASEEEEEE!!!

    • Amy says:

      You’re the instigator of this ;). Let me know if you start a beginner’s one, I’d love to hear how it goes. I’d like to learn what works best!

  4. Amanda says:

    I love October too – it’s my favourite month! I think it’s so wonderful when talented people like you are generous enough to share your skills with us, and I look forward to the evolution of your blogging ^__^

  5. Wanett says:

    Hi, Amy!! I’m an October baby, too. I’ll be 33 on the 23rd. I always have a wish list in place, but I think we could all add that beauty of a machine to ours!! I’m going to share the video with my children, they love to see how things are made.

    I’d like to chime in and say that I think you’d be a great teacher! I’m looking forward to reading how it goes for you!

  6. Ginger says:

    Lingerie Fridays! I love the sound of that! I’m glad that you’ve found some new inspiration and direction with your blogging– looking forward to seeing your posts!

      • Amy says:

        Oops, I replied about a different machine.

        This machine above is not for sale as far as I know. It was a funded engineer project. But it’d be cool if someone put it into production!

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