I read a marvellous post today where Stephanie gets out her “stash of shame” which includes several unfinished jumpers. I think she did so in order to encourage her own creativity, but for me it was a revelation. This high-achieving woman, who makes beautiful clothes, actually has several half finished jumpers and unsuitable purchases in her cupboard. What a relief! It certainly made me feel a bit better to read about her tussles with her buying mistakes and fitting problems. Her confessions have provided me with therapy and relief. And encouraged me to do the same.
In line with today’s culture of “transparency” and “full disclosure” (and for my son Gus who especially likes it when I write up my failures) here is the large bag that lies in my “Corner of Shame”.
I leave the bag in full view, in our living room, hoping that seeing it daily will prod me into action. This is done in line with a post from Lesley in Australia who says that between each major project she mends something. I thought this was not only virtuous but probably the only way to get this sort of work done – we all prefer a shiny new project which promises to be perfect, to an existing one that is anything but. I put all my unfinished jobs, my mending and alterations in a pile and promised I would tackle them between the more exciting projects. But, if the truth be told, I have not never done so.
Let’s tip out the Bag of Shame.
There are two categories of item in here – the mending and alterations; and the true UFOs.
First mending and alterations.
- I am not sure why the pink skirt is here. It is from SWAP 2014 and I wear it a great deal. I think the lining has come down. Ten minute job.
- The green pencil skirt is lovely. I put it in the alteration pile as it is a little bit big and it slips down. I need to take in the side seams and redo the facings. Half hour job.
- The silver top is from Topshop sale. It was £10, and is a size 18 (109cms). I took off the sleeves and used them for the Octopus eyes. I need to take it in. This would take half an hour, but I am not sure I need a silver top.
- The blue linen trousers have a broken zip. I wore them on our Amalfi coast holiday. They are a little bit small to get into, although they fit OK once on, but I think this is what has caused the zip to fail. Not a nice job and a new zip may fail again.
- In the navy corner, already pined, is another Topshop sale item – a polyester sleeveless, navy jumpsuit. It needs taking in at the bust, but is otherwise fine in terms of fit. A bit of a fiddle but not a big job. Maybe an hour.
- And finally is a dress I really like but cannot wear. I underlined this with silk organza and it scratches. I need to line it to prevent it being so uncomfortable. I think this would take a couple of hours but would probably be worth it.
The next category of items are my UnFinished Objects. These are more shameful really, especially as I have alot more invested in them. Two were items from this year’s SWAP.
- The first is my YSL Mondrian dress. I don’t like the dress as it is. Some people have suggested removing the sleeves, and others – taking off the sequin hem. I am not sure I would wear it anyway. But I find it hard to give away. I am sort of expecting a suitable invitation and then I will try altering it. Maybe.
- My purple Courage coat is not finished either. Something went wrong with the sleeves. I put them in as per the instructions, but I think they are back to front. It doesn’t make sense as the cuffs are correct but not the top of the sleeve. It may be that the pattern is wrong. This so disappointing. But it could be put right. However Esme said it looks like a dressing gown and Nick thought it was something from a 1920s Am Dram production so I sort of lost my enthusiasm for this project.
- This is a rather nice Burda blouse in a lovely colour. It has buttons and buttonholes. But the sleeves are too long. Not difficult to do, this is more an alteration really. But I can’t bring myself to do it.
- The blue, thick wool dress is something I made in my pattern cutting class. It has a princess line, empire bodice, a waisted section and a slim skirt. It fits well. It has the most marvellous silk lining given to me by my dear friend Meddie. But I didn’t choose the design of the dress and I don’t love it. The lining is not finished. I am thinking of just making it into a rather nice straight skirt. But I haven’t yet.
Any suggestions or advice? Or are you in exactly the same boat yourself?