Rule 1: In 2012, we shall each create 40 things. The majority of these to be garments, but some can be knitted/crocheted or whatever craft may take our fancy. The general goal is to create 10 things per quarter, which translates as 0.77 garments per week. Told you we were geeks. We chose 40 because a) we aren’t as hardcore as the wonderful Sew Weekly ladies, and 52 seemed potentially unacheivable, and b) we have husbands, kids etc as well as holidays to go on and honeymoons to have, and we want this to remain a wonderful happy hobby, rather than a millstone round our necks in manner of “I can’t possibly go out, I HAVE TO PIPE THIS NECKLINE, DAMMIT!”
Our intention is that these 40 garments will be split up roughly like this:
- 10 dresses
- 4 skirts
- 6 tops
- 2 trousers
- 1 jacket or coat
- 3 non sewing items
- 10 free choice (Sarah has small girls who have a better social life than she does, Suze has a husband with an unnatural love of fancy dress. Bound to be a costume required of us at some point…)
- 4 Tough Love challenges – more of these later…
Rule 2: Pounds Per Garment (PPG). It really would be the final insult to our families if, having not seen them all year due to sewing, we also bankrupted them. So, we would like to try our hardest not to spend the earth on this. In any case, we don’t believe that sewing your own beautiful clothes has to cost you the earth. With this in mind, we are going to track the cost of our garments over the year. Ideally, we would like to find in December 2012 that we have averaged around £30 per garment – this being the amount we would previously have been happy to spend on an Impulse Purchase in a shop. Oh yes, there will be graphs. Stash items will be charged at £6 a metre, scraps are free, as is fabric recycled from old clothes. PPG includes fabric, notions and pattern. Bit of a challenge, but this will encourage us to engage with how much we are spending.
Rule 3: Tough Love. Every three months, towards the end of the quarter, we get to set each other a sewing challenge. This will be based on a skill which the other needs to perfect/has found difficult/thinks they ought to master even though they can’t really face it/avoids when they see it on a pattern envelope. For example, piping and slippery fabrics make Suze swear like a Navvy. This isn’t designed to be mean – we aren’t allowed to make the other create an 80’s velvet puffball, but it is more about pushing the other to do things which she might not otherwise do.
Rule 4: These must be garments we actually want to wear, or items which have a use. There is to be no sewing something crappy merely to meet the quota. The intention is to hit January 2013 with a beautiful, handmade wardrobe of clothes which we love and which fit.
Overriding Rule: This is our game. And our Rules. Because we’re control freaks, we won’t change the Rules lightly, but you know what, if things change or we’re on the verge of collapse (or if we’ve fallen out over an imperfect seam), then we might see fit to change these rules.