I was invited to a focus group last night for a sewing magazine publisher; a friend of mine runs a great sewing business Sewing Belle and knew I love to patchwork and sew, so invited me along. It was a perfect storm of visiting grandparents and husband home early to get the kids to bed so I could go… 6pm is not a great time for a parent! I even had a shower and wore something without stains – I felt like a princess. Lately I’m simply too tired to go out, even though I have a number of lovely friends and groups I enjoy – so I have really missed the social interaction and non-child related moments. Not only was cake being served, and some amazing freebies but I really enjoyed being in such interesting adult company. I felt invigorated by the discussions about what a good sewing magazine should contain and felt giddy at the idea that people would value what I had to say – mostly because in the middle of the school holidays I’m hitting a peak of being ignored by the kids. It was a lovely relaxed evening, and home before I turned into a pumpkin too.
I sometimes feel like background noise at home, and as an individual parenting can often make you feel invisible – so it was enchanting to be somewhere I felt so ‘me’. It has confirmed everything I already knew to be true about finding your passions and making sure there is time in the week or month to express them (whatever they may be). I have spent the last 15 years helping other people discover their passions and make plans for how to incorporate them into their lives – I taught time management, journaling, confidence building, how to manage perfectionism and lots more. You would think I would have my own needs totally sorted but of course knowing something and being able to put it into practice are not the same thing – but I have a many pronged plan…
- I’m going to encourage my children to share my passion for making things, they already do lots of crafting so adding in sewing won’t be too hard. It’s then something I can do with them… they seem keen so far having seen the free pattern to make a fabric butterfly in on of the magazines from last night! It’s also a great way to use up scraps and fabrics that are currently in the loft waiting for me to find more hours in the day. This also fits with our frugal habits, and reusing/recycling lifestyle so it feels good on lots of levels.
- I have dusted off my sewing machine and it’s now in an easy to reach location, with just one project alongside so I don’t have to spend ages finding what I want or deciding what to do. When Mr Frugal is studying in September I will start sewing at the same time. When Mr F’s work schedule allows I’m going to attend the evening sewing group again – even if I’m too tired to actually sew!
- I’ve started a new board on our Pinterest Page – Frugal Fun Sewing to help collate ideas and inspiration. Feel free to follow along and share.
- I’m thinking about how to incorporate the frugal aspects of sewing into this website… a new page or an existing one… any ideas welcome x
- I’m going to approach some sewing magazines with ideas for articles and a regular column.
Identifying that I need some time for my own passions is a positive step – now the real effort of making it happen begins…
What are your passions, and how do you fit them into family life?
Following on the recycled theme, and seamlessly matching it to the Christmas theme, I came across these beautiful recycled coffee sack Christmas stockings from Fern Cottage Crafts.
Buying gifts that have a recycled element can be done in all sorts of ways. There are lots of homemade ideas for gifts from children, or you may have a piece of jewellery from a relative that would make a great heirloom piece for another family member. Christmas shouldn’t be about the money we spend, but the thought we put in.
We’ve tried a few ways to extend Christmas spirit for more than just one day of present frenzied chaos and eating ourselves into a stupor. We like to wrap all our Christmas books and DVD’s and have them as treats all through December (re-using last years wrapping paper of course, if you wrap them before they go back in the loft with all the odds and bits you have left, or saved from the big day it’s a doddle!). We also like to make Christmas Eve a special day… take a look at Jam Jar Craft Studio for some great recycled paper ideas. Just a thought 😉
We love having a scrap paper drawer at Frugal HQ. It’s made from all sorts of things – old letters and printer mistakes, a clear out of old paperwork, damaged book pages, unwanted order forms and catalogues… and when it runs out we just let people we know to save their unwanted printouts, especially people that work in colleges and offices.
I particularly love the weird and wonderful array of things the kids create, they are happy for hours at the table with scissors, gluesticks and staplers (under supervision :)) This week Daddy got a new hat, we made some snowflakes for the windows and a few paperchain experiments – however these became the army of zombies that the Tsum Tsum Avengers were fighting so didn’t last long…
Our interest in recycling and creativity means we often come across far more talented people at these things than we are – look out for a GUEST POST tomorrow from the amazing Emma at C & E Designs about why they love to recycle paper – and of course the beautiful and unique things they make.
Just this week we ‘met’ Ekra, another map recycler on Instagram – it’s what all the cool kids do!
Remember to keep a note of friends that have allotments, fruit trees or chickens and cheekily enquire if they have any spares now and then 😉
Apple Pie for pudding x
Another great recycling project, this time with old but loved t-shirts. Sometimes you just can’t throw them away, and here are some fun ideas of how to give them a second life. This is particularly nice with kids clothes that they have grown out of, or loved items that have been worn until holes appeared…
Show me your makes!
Whether you ‘do’ Halloween or not, this is a fun project to recycle some good ol’ toilet rolls – as you may have noticed, we keep all of ours to use all year round – we love bats and have a bat box on the house so you don’t have to link it to the end of October if you don’t want to…
Today can do one! Just when you think one more thing might tip you over the edge… And then one more thing happens and you have to decide whether to laugh or cry.
Being frugal for a comfort eater and shopper isn’t easy – especially when stressed. However, I’m developing a list of free ‘feel good’ activities for moments like these – feel free to suggest some (be polite!).
I’m off to rummage in the craft cupboard to make some earrings for myself. After a cuppa of course😉
Here’s a project for all you recyclers out there – thanks to Nifty…
I’m aware that the exhaustion of parenting has somewhat changed my creative habits, I rarely do creative works for myself nowadays, although I’m often up to my neck in PVA and tissue paper for the kids. I miss the part of me that used to upcycle and recycle more, so I was particularly inspired by this…
This is a brilliant example of reusing and recycling to meet a real need. Jess used some old shoes boxes, cereal packs and the jolly old loo roll tubes to make a truly unique and practical pen holder. Covered in wrapping paper and some stickers it is a bespoke item – costing nothing but saving a fortune. It took me back to my childhood Blue Peter projects, many of which I made and some of which I think are still in my parents loft!
Jess is creative on many more levels, so if you want to pay her a visit and
feel inspired by beautiful things, give her a ‘hello’ from here x