Tuesday, March 30, 2010


I am in a sewing funk. I'm not happy with my current projects and I had a moment this morning where I thought I'm just no good at this and what the hell am I doing anyway. I would have curled in a ball and cried this morning over the progress on my Liverpool shirtdress, but I had to go to work and didn't have the time.

I was trying to perfectly pipe some pocket flaps (say that three times fast), and it doesn't look good. The piping isn't turning corners nicely and it looks like crap. Like homemade. Which irritates me and makes me depressed and makes me think I can't really make anything nice so why am I trying.

That was how I was feeling today.

Then I got on my blog reader and Polka Dot Overload had a post recently dedicated to the same topic. And so did Colette Patterns?

So, I guess it's an epidemic. Not an epidemic of people who can't perfectly pipe their pocket flaps, but an epidemic of something. I think this quote from Kenneth D. King in the most recent Threads magazine started it all:

“If I were to say one thing and only one thing, it’s this: perfectionism is a disease, and a form of fear!

When learning the craft of sewing (which I believe is absolutely necessary in order to know what’s possible when designing), you should expect to destroy several acres of fabric before you get good. This is an acquired skill which can only be perfected by means of repetition—practicing over and over, learning from mistakes, learning when you can save something, and when you need to cut your losses and start over.”

I guess I'm in good company because I do waste yards and yards if not acres of fabric.

Still, it bothers me. I'm not a perfectionist. I have a good enough point, and maybe that point should be a little better. A little closer to really good?

I sew fast. I do everything fast so it's kind of no surprise, but sometimes in sewing that isn't a good thing. Granted, I can whip out a lined, a-line skirt with an invisible zipper in an hour or two. That's pretty cool. But sometimes I just wish I could slow down. Enjoy the process more. Take time on the tiny details, take time perfecting the craft so the finished products are really great and not just good enough.

Gag. I think I need to take a break from my machines for a while. Luckily I have a little Alabama Project sitting on the end table. It could use a little love this week. **sigh**


  1. I feel the same way sometimes too! As someone who loves your blog, I can tell you that you make some amazing things and they look GREAT! Keep your chin up--you are an amazing seamstress and we all love your projects :-) Oh, and I can't wait to see the Alabama project too...the stencils are amazing!!

  2. I have seen enough of your finished products in person to know that your "good enough" is pretty darn fantastic. They are adorable and well-made and withstand the use and abuse of toddlers and my washing machine. I am at the point in the year when I am forced to weed through the kids' closets to purget the "too small" stuff from last summer and replace it with new Spring clothes. I am excited to report that all of the lovely dresses you made Lily last year are the perfect fit for tops over leggings this year. :) Now you just need to open back up your Etsy shop so I can buy new dresses. My all-time favorite that you made is the 2nd blue one. It has the most adorable detail around the neckline and it fits great. But yet, you never did like the way that dress turned out. LOL.

    Take a break and then get back to enjoying sewing!