Day 58 – I made a shirt! Well, almost.

I did it! I actually made something with my sewing machine that I am proud of!

back shirt front shirt

I finished a shirt! Well, almost finished. It needs buttons and button-holes still. I’m waiting to complete the button-holes because I’ve never done them before and want to do some practice before attempting them on something I intend to wear to work. I am learning!

But, for reals, guys, I am super proud of myself for this one! It fits the way I like my work shirts to fit (just slightly too big, for comfort reasons, although this could use another inch of length – surprise), the fabric is phenomenally comfortable (Japanese cotton) and the pattern was actually easy to follow. I wish I had taken a close-up shot of the sleeves because I am most proud of those. I’ve never done sleeves before and they look perfect, if I do say so myself.

This may actually be something I could list on my etsy store. It didn’t take too long (about 4 hours for my first attempt), but the fabric is a bit more expensive than I like to pay per metre. But, the bird pattern! The birds!

So, let’s do some math. How much do I have to sell this bad boy for?

$16 (cost of fabric) + $2 (cost of buttons) + $16 (my time) + $7 (shipping) +$1 (etsy fees) = $42

Now the big question:



Day 51 – I need a camera

I’m working on tiny, adorable baby hats. So far I have one premie pink/white striped hat done and am working on one newborn yellow one.

I haven’t listed these items yet because I think the photos do not do them justice. They are blurry and unappealing because 1. The lighting in my house is not ideal, 2. my hands are too shaky to hold the camera still properly, and 3. Adam refuses to take all my listing photos for me. I am anxiously awaiting my parents’ visit which will include the arrival of my long-ago “purchased” vanity and my dad’s old camera and equipment. He even promised me a mini-lesson to make my items “jump off the page”. 

premie hat 2premie hat measurement

Why am I making adorable baby hats? Because all the babies I know look so damn cute in them! This is one of the first ones I made for sweet baby Mabel. I made a 6 month size for a newborn… that’s why it’s a bit big, but still very cute! Now, if only I could find more of that multi-colour yarn!

mabel hat 

So, while I am waiting for the camera to arrive, I will continue to knit while watching tv with my husband. If there are requests or suggestions for colours/patterns/sizes, please let me know!!


Day 44 – Why buy handmade?

I read an article this morning about why handmade products are better than mass produced products. The reason I wanted to share this article is because point number 6 makes so much sense to me and explains how I’ve been feeling lately. 

6. As a Gift

Everyone loves getting gifts! But if you had the choice between receiving a gift made with care from a local craftsman or it’s mass produced equivalent, bought from a big-box store, which one would you appreciate more? When surveyed, over 90% of people said they would appreciate a handmade gift more than one made in a factory. Also, taking reason number four, people appreciate gifts when they are unique rather than similar. People want something they can call theirs, something unique. So, next time you can’t think of a gift idea for a friends upcoming birthday, or your anniversary, look at some handmade products!

The items I make are intended as gifts. I want people to look at my store and say “yes, Jenny would love that for her new bathroom!” or “that’s exactly what I want to give my mom for Christmas”. I make handmade items because I love to make handmade items.

The point of this project is to be able to make my passion into my career and I may have lost focus by focusing on me instead and what I want to wear. It doesn’t help that summer is my busiest season socially and all my weekends are packed solid. I haven’t accomplished any of the goals I set out this week. Sigh. Maybe I should have started this project in the fall when I’m less likely to ditch everything to sit outside. 

I’m just making excuses, really. If this was giving me money up front, I’d be more willing to put my time into it but that’s not how this type of thing works. I have to make an effort because I see a reward. Now I just have to remember that every time I get discouraged.