Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Nerd Alert!

Ok, ok.  I am ousting myself.  I get excited about graphs.  Something about seeing information visually is really cool.  It's totally on the opposite end of the spectrum of what I actually do for a living.  But there was a part of me that loved Statistics in college (especially Educational Statistics).  Weird for an artist, I know.  I have enjoyed reading everyone's end of year posts (Gillian, your Top 5 idea was awesome!).   Though I'm really not a sentimental person.  I don't look back very often.  I am a firm believer in always looking to the future.   But Molly's graphic approach to her 2012 sewing data pumped me up.  I fired up my work computer (which I brought home over break because I swore I was going to get some work done....) and tried to refresh my Excel skills.  I haven't had to use it in years.  On a side note, Excel sure does look different in Microsoft 2010, doesn't it?  Took me a bit to figure it out.  I'm dating myself, I'm sure.

Here is my end of year data in all it's nerdy, graphic glory!  I made a grand total of 47 projects. Not too shabby.  I did quite a few home decor and crafty projects that I counted as well.  If I sewed it, it was included in the data.  I love looking at everything from this point of view because I get so much information about my productivity.  That's good knowledge to have.  Especially when my future sewing time involves also taking care of a babe.
 

My first chart is number of sewing projects by month.  I was more productive in the summer.  No surprise there since I get eight weeks off then.  And what went on in July?  I have no idea how I churned out so many projects that month.  That was also the month this little baby was created.  Hehehe.  Twas a productive month in many respects.  My productivity dwindled in the fall due to being newly pregnant.  But I managed to make something every month.  I also noticed a shift in my use of knits then, as well.  I seem to have been a little more productive lately.  It's true what they say about getting some energy back in the second trimester.


  Not sure why this chart has a title and none of the others do.  I did quite a few home decor projects early in the year.  I consider the sofa to be my biggest accomplishment of 2012.  It was completed in February, though I spent almost the entire month of January working on it.  I like sewing for the home.  Truly, I like variety.  I also noticed that I sewed a lot of baby clothes.  And no baby of my own yet!  All of the baby items I sewed were for friends or coworkers babies.  I love me some baby gift sewing.   Something about sewing miniature cutesy things is so satisfying.



Next chart is the type of fabric I used for my sewing projects.  I used a lot of cotton wovens.  I labeled that category to describe all sorts of wovens I used that were mostly cotton; seersucker, batiks, shirtings, etc.  That's pretty self-explanatory.  They are easy to sew with.  The polyester category was surprising, although one project was a craft project and the other two were fails.  What does that say about poly?  I love linen, so I'm actually surprised I didn't use more than I did.  I'd love to push myself to sew with some different types of fabric in 2013.  Um, silk would be nice.  But I'm also on a strict fabric diet, so that may be difficult.  I will be sewing from my stash whenever possible in the next year.  I predict that there will be a lot of pink frilly cotton things sewn in the future.


And the last chart is sewing project by pattern.  I didn't include my home decor projects in this chart since they didn't really require patterns.  Just measuring.  I guess I like Simplicity patterns!  I probably own more Simplicity than anything else.  They seem to go on 99 cent sales more often than Vogues or Burdas.  I was pleased to see I actually had a category for self drafted.  Though all of those projects are either a baby robe or an a-line skirt.  The Oliver and S category is misleading because all four of those projects were popover dresses for baby gifts.  I counted each project individually.  I would love to sew some other Oliver and S patterns in the future.  All in all, I'm happy about my year.  I see from my graphs that again,  I like variety.  That's generally how I am with art as well.  I consider myself to be a jack of all trades, master of none ;)  My only sewing goal for 2013 is to manage to carve out some sewing time while taking care of this new baby.  I don't want to let sewing go to the wayside since making is so important me.  I don't foresee that happening, but you know... I'm determined to make it a point to keep sewing.

Lastly, I just want to say thanks so much to all you lovely folks out there who read my dorky ramblings.  I can't tell you how much fulfillment I get from sewing and being a part of this online community.  I truly enjoy starting my day (and usually ending it, too) reading your sewing blogs also.  Like others have noted, sewing blogs are organic, rich and exciting reads.  It's real life.  So much better than any magazine or newspaper I could pick up. I love that I've made online friendships and connections with kindred souls all over the world.  It's a great feeling.

 Wishing everyone an awesome 2013 full of nothing but sewing successes.

27 comments:

  1. Ha ha! I'll out myself too and say that I share your love of graphs and statistics! I actually studied both maths/statistics and art at A level many years ago, much to the bemusement of my teachers!

    I don't think it's at all strange that an artist likes to see information presented visually. Your creative mind works in a visual way, therefore graphs - which are essentially pictures - give you the clearest view.

    I would (and might actually) do the same thing myself.

    ReplyDelete
  2. What a fascinating insight! I hope you enjoy the adventures this year brings!

    ReplyDelete
  3. You reminded me how much I love graphs and pie charts, etc. Haven't really made any since college days (where I made A LOT for my science-based major). And I really recommend the Oliver and S patterns. They are top notch independent patterns, and I have learned so much sewing from them for my girls.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I really like their designs as well. I'll be adding some Oliver and S patterns to my collection, I'm sure!

      Delete
  4. Hehehe!! What a great analysis, I actually did a pie chart without seeing yours or Molly's as well, so I guess we all enjoy using excel!! But I have to say your different charts are far deeper than mine, and I love them!!
    Happy new year to you too, exciting year ahead x

    ReplyDelete
  5. I love it spelled out in numbers like that! Great idea. Enjoy 2013...

    ReplyDelete
  6. I'm loving the graphs! What a great way to put together a year end review...I'm also impressed with your Excel skills. BTW, you had a great year!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Very fun and that couch project is so impressive! I admire your sewing skills.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I love the graphs and thanks for pointing me towards Molly's blog. I love how graphs and stats can help you pick up on patterns you wouldn't be able to find just from searching your (subjective) memory. I'm with you on not looking back, but I need to do some of that this year in order to figure out the right direction for my sewing business, so thank you for the graph idea. I didn't know you made home decor (I started reading your blog in the summer) and I LOVE THAT SOFA! Honestly, it's so lovely that it's magical. I know you'll keep sewing after the baby. Two things that I've learned over the past five years of raising small ones are, 1) I'm a much better mom when I take time to do the things that keep me sane (running, sewing, reading), and 2) My kids are happier when they don't depend on me for every single thing, but learn to depend on themselves, too (this is probably not true during the "4th trimester" but those tiny ones sleep a lot anyway). I look foward to seeing all your creations - biological and otherwise - in 2013!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is great advice. It makes sense that when you are happier, baby is happier, too. Those first few weeks will be a whole new routine, though!

      Delete
  9. I'm right there with you on the graphing...so fun! You really had an awesome and productive year, SO many good projects! A happy and creative 2013 to you!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Hehe, I loved your graphs! what a terrific idea! And you've had an amazing year, producing so many gorgeous things. Wishing you all the best for the New Year Liza Jane, to you and your growing family!

    ReplyDelete
  11. I just love that sofa cover! Your home dec is awesome.
    Before I started a blog I kept a financial record of costs and items made compared to an estimate of what the same items would cost to buy RTW. After three years I found that even in a relatively slow sewing year I would break even with lots of material and notions left over.
    In a good year or a year in which I made jackets, coats or special event type dresses I definitely saved money, sometimes a lot of money. So it's all good isn't it!
    Happy New Year.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I need to start keeping some data on cost of things I sew. That would be a very interesting thing to graph! Haha! I'm going overboard now...

      Delete
  12. Oh I love graphs and statistics! I use excel way too much for my "job", currently compiling a giant table of wind turbine natural frequencies, oh the fun (not, it's actually really boring)!
    Anyways, are you having a girl (you might have said that before I can't remember), that will be so exciting to sew little dresses and stuff!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, a girl! And thanks for the great idea to put everything in graphs ;)

      Delete
  13. Graphs - They just make everything look so fun! You've made all kinds of great things this year... and I'm sure you'll figure out how to carve out some personal sewing time once the baby arrives!

    ReplyDelete
  14. I haven't analysed my sewing that much, but it is certainly interesting seeing other sewists' graphs - intriguing and insightful

    ReplyDelete
  15. I had no idea that you upholstered your own couch! I'm in awe. That was one of my goals for 2011 and 2012, and I am thinking about throwing in the towel. Bravo on yours, it's beautiful! Also, I am a fellow chart lover and it was fun to take a look at the statistics behind your creations.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Don't throw in the towel! It truly wasn't that difficult. Just the sewing was a bit tedious.

      Delete
  16. This is the coolest thing I have ever seen...mostly because I have been trying to figure out how to use Excel more in my life. :) I'm so doing this for my sewing and knitting.

    ReplyDelete
  17. loving those graphs!!! i'm such a visual person.

    ReplyDelete
  18. I love your charts and graphs! I'm also expecting a baby in early April, and my productivity in July was sky high, too! And then in the early fall, blah. Almost nothing. So interesting!

    ReplyDelete
  19. You've had a great sewing year, well done! I've lost count of the number of people who have told me that I won't be able to find time for sewing once I've had my second baby, but I honestly think they are wrong. I was super-productive after having my first child - just make sure to use those naptimes to your advantage! You can always make time for your hobbies if you set your mind to it. Good luck with the last few months of pregnancy x

    ReplyDelete
  20. Wow, it's so fun to see your year broken down like this! I bet this was really instructive! Happy New Year!

    ReplyDelete
  21. I'm impressed you got sewing done in the first trimester. That's when I did a lot of not much! I want your couch!

    ReplyDelete