Hello, 2015!

Happy 2015! I love the start of a new year. Three hundred and sixty-five days of infinite possibilities!

bernina record

This year

This year, I’m going to sew more personal projects. I’m going to think about what I really like to wear, and sew those things. I tend to love all kinds of fabrics, and get interested in all kinds of clothing styles. But not every design is suited for me, and not every fabric is best for me either. I like classics with feminine details, and sometimes I get distracted by the new and interesting even if it’s not my usual thing. I’m going to choose projects more thoughtfully this year.

This year, with Marissa’s help, we’re going to launch more patterns. We have two to announce in the next week! Many more designs are in various stages of development. It’s going to be a good year for new patterns.

This year, I’m going to aim for balance in my life. I’m going to take time to work out, to sleep well, to see friends and spend time with Mr. Sewaholic. I think about sewing and designing patterns all the time, so it’s hard to just shut that part of my mind off. But when I do, I feel refreshed when I go back to work. As much as I love work, and I really do, there is more to life as well!

This year, I am travelling to Iceland! And the Netherlands. I’ve always wanted to see Iceland, and I can’t wait to go. Same with the Netherlands – I’m especially looking forward to travelling by bike!

Thoughts on last year

Last year was a good growth year for Sewaholic Patterns. Marissa joined us part-time and has been an incredible help over the past three months. Caroline’s started her own business but will continue to work with us, blogging on Wednesdays, sewing up samples, and providing great customer support. We added PDF versions of nearly all our current patterns, tried different products including labels and fabric kits, and started working with a professional photographer. My book was published, I moved into a bigger office, and started using a distribution centre to fulfill orders. When I type it all out, it’s a good reminder of what happened and how far we’ve come. I’ve almost forgotten there were so many changes in the past year!

I made a big list of goals last year and realized that things can change significantly throughout the year. Things that seem important in January might not be relevant by the fall. Workloads and priorities can shift, and when you don’t achieve a goal it’s easy to feel down, like you failed. When in reality you learn and progress all year, so it’s not a complete failure.

For example, last year’s goal to release eight patterns.  I almost wanted to skip reading back my list of goals, since I knew I didn’t achieve this one! Here’s the problem: you can’t achieve a goal without a plan. And having a plan of simply ‘work harder and longer’ isn’t a sustainable plan. I didn’t have any real steps besides working more hours myself, but with Marissa’s and Caroline’s help, we have the talent to achieve much more this year.

Goals for 2015

This year’s goal is to be fully present. Be here, now. And when I’m not here, then be there instead. Be with my friends when I’m with friends, not thinking about work. Be at work, committed to our goals, and work hard, but then go home and be present at home, mind and body. (I used to think that was overly touchy-feely, now I get it. My body is always present, my mind not so much.)

Slow, constant improvement. Our 2015 patterns are going to be even better, with new features suggested by customer and reader feedback! I want to continue to improve our products, and improve myself as well. Making a goal like ‘constant improvement’ sounds a bit daunting but adding ‘slow’ helps me to remember it comes over time, and with practice. It also helps fit in some of the random wishes like ‘take a photography class,’ because it fits the goal of slow and constant improvement.

And lastly, I have to remind myself: remember to have fun! This is a pretty fun business. I get to sew all day and puzzle out construction sequences, discuss all things sewing with people who care, and see successful projects made by you using our patterns. I get to buy lots of fabric and watch ideas come to life in three-dimensional garments. It’s pretty awesome and I’m so fortunate to get to do this for a living. So when something goes wrong, and it inevitably will, I have to remember that it’s just one blip during an otherwise amazing dream job.

Wishing you a 2015 full of fun, learning, and living in the moment! Do you have any goals for the new year, sewing related or not? (Read past beginning of the year blog posts here.)

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52 Responses to Hello, 2015!

  1. Teri January 1, 2015 at 6:26 am #

    You really accomplished a lot in 2014! I loved reading about your goals/plans for this upcoming year. I’m very excited to see the new patterns, too! Happy New Year!

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 12:29 pm #

      Thank you! It’s been a pretty amazing year when I stop to think back on it. Look for new patterns coming this week, I hope you like them!

  2. Awfulknitter January 1, 2015 at 6:32 am #

    Happy new year! I hope you have a good time in Iceland – I’ve visited twice and I think it’s an awesome place, unlike anywhere else I’ve been.

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 12:28 pm #

      That’s what it looks like to me, too. Like nowhere else in the world!

  3. nothy lane January 1, 2015 at 6:59 am #

    Happy New Year! I can’t wait to see the new patterns….

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 12:28 pm #

      Happy new year to you as well!

  4. Janou January 1, 2015 at 7:21 am #

    Happy new year to you as well! Setting realistic goals may be less ‘sexy’, but is more rewarding in the end. I’m in the Netherlands and I was wondering if you’d like to do a meet up thing here? I would understand if you’d prefer not to deal with customers on your break, though :)

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 12:27 pm #

      Yes, it is a lot less sexy and daring to have achievable goals, isn’t it? :)
      I would love to do a meetup in the Netherlands, that would be fun! How should we plan it? There’s another commenter Sewsweet1982 that suggested it as well.

      • Janou March 12, 2015 at 11:41 am #

        I’m not actually getting notifications when you comment, so I missed this, sorry.

        I can think of two strong contenders for a meet-up city. One being Amsterdam for having Kantje Boord, various fabric stores and possibly the Monday fabric market. The other would be Utrecht with the country’s largest weekly fabric market on Saturdays. Or both, if you feel up to it. You could make it a blog post or you can e-mail anyone who’s shown an interest, not sure which would be better. I can coordinate if you need me to, but a real local would probably be more helpful.

        There are many more things to visit but I don’t want to overwhelm you with too much info :)

  5. Annette Tirette January 1, 2015 at 9:27 am #

    Iceland is amazing! I went last January and can’t wait to go back sometime… The Netherlands are fun too, any chance you’d pop down to Belgium? There’s a super nice group of friends who sew here who would love to play tourguide!

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 12:26 pm #

      Perhaps! We’re there for a while and considered visiting France as well. Is it far to Belgium? I’d love to have a sewing tour there! I’m coming in the month of May if that makes a difference.

  6. Ginger January 1, 2015 at 10:26 am #

    Happy 2015! Girl, you will LOVE Iceland! I went this summer and loved it!

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 12:25 pm #

      Thanks! That’s awesome, is there anything in particular you’d suggest as a must-see? I can’t wait!

  7. Kelly January 1, 2015 at 10:30 am #

    The great thing about constant improvement is that you’re going to do it inevitably, whether you consciously try or not, especially when you care about what you’re doing. When you think of it that way it takes a lot of pressure off! I’m really looking forward to your new designs, and am SO happy you’ve added PDFs! Happy New Year!

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 12:25 pm #

      Exactly! I didn’t want high-pressure goals since running a business is pressure enough. But I did want to have some themes to refer back on and I think this will help. I’m so glad you like the PDF patterns! We’ll have our new patterns available in PDF versions, too!

  8. Hilda January 1, 2015 at 10:39 am #

    Dear Tasia, if you want some advise about fabric shopping in the Netherlands, please let me know.

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 12:23 pm #

      I would love that! Thanks so much for the offer.

  9. Sewsweet1982 January 1, 2015 at 10:49 am #

    Have a great 2015! If you wanna have a sewing meetup in the Netherlands, I’m sure there are many Dutch sewcialist like me who would like to meet up! My town of Leiden (half an hour from Amsterdam by train) has only one fabric shop and two knit shops, but our canals can rival those of Amsterdam :)

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 12:23 pm #

      I would love to have a sewing meetup in the Netherlands! How should we arrange it? I’ll be there in the month of May and I’ll confirm the actual dates soon!

  10. Anne January 1, 2015 at 11:10 am #

    Iceland is amazing!! And i live in the netherlands, so if you want tips or advice… Let me now
    One thing i have to advice you is visiting ‘Kantjeboord’ lingerie in Amsterdam if you visit Amsterdam. It’s in a suburb, but it’s lingerie fabric heaven! (With a free comedy show given by the employes)

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 12:22 pm #

      Awesome! I would love tips and advice on where to go. I’ve hear of Kantjeboord and I would love to go there! (And I already have been told that ‘oo’ is not ‘ooooh’ but ‘Oh’ so I’ll say it correctly.)

  11. Becky January 1, 2015 at 12:53 pm #

    Happy 2015! I’ll be looking forward to seeing what your company does this year–the new patterns will give me something to look forward to sewing up once I’m not pregnant anymore! And enjoy the travel, those trips sound amazing.

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 12:21 pm #

      Congrats! I can imagine it would be more fun to sew with a .. less-changing body. It’s shaping up to be a year with good variety, hopefully there are designs you like in our new pattern lineup!

  12. Emily Roberts January 1, 2015 at 1:18 pm #

    Hope you enjoy 2015, especially your trips away! This year my partner and I are planning our third cycle tour around the Netherlands -we love it there, so bike friendly. First year we went for 6 weeks, second year and this time work only allows 2 weeks :( We camp, so I dont think I’ll have much room for fabric amongst all the kit, but still, if you or anyone else has a ‘sewing shop map’ of the Netherlands I’d very much like to see it! Maybe I could fit a few lingerie kits in somewhere…..

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 12:19 pm #

      Your third trip, that’s awesome! Did you do the same cycle tour each time, or with the same company? I’ll report back on any sewing shopping I do, I hope to visit a few fabric shops!

  13. Amy @ Amy's Button Box January 1, 2015 at 1:21 pm #

    I love your resolutions for 2015! It’s nice to have resolutions that are challenging but achievable! Looking forward to seeing your new patterns!

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 12:19 pm #

      Yes, that’s the goal, challenging but achievable!

  14. Pins, Patterns and Polish January 1, 2015 at 3:32 pm #

    I love these kinds of posts. Your progress with the business is really inspiring amd you’re doing an amazing job.

    It’s good sometimes to take a step back amd focus on what’s around you. I like your goals and how realistic you are. Wishing you and your business an amazing year!

    I’m also looking forward to more of your personal sewing projects, love your choices :-)

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 12:16 pm #

      Thanks! I agree. Sometimes I can spend all day focusing on the small things and forget to step back to see the bigger picture. I’ve learned to be more realistic after facing disappointments or having frustrations at things not going as fast as I’d like.. so I’m trying to change that in my mind. Think realistic, then I can amaze myself with even better productivity! (But if not then at least I’ve met my goals.)
      Yes, I really want to sew more personal projects, and get back to what I love most of all, sewing! Hoping I can manage my time well enough to make that happen.

  15. Renée January 1, 2015 at 4:33 pm #

    You’ve accomplished a lot. Looking forward to your new patterns. I’m also going to the Netherlands this year. It will be an amazing place to bike.
    Iceland is on my wish list for the future.
    Good luck with your goals for 2015.

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 12:14 pm #

      Thank you! Yes, I’m very much looking forward to biking around the Netherlands, I hope you have a great trip!

  16. Helen siddon January 1, 2015 at 4:53 pm #

    You accomplished so much in 2014, it’s been lovely following along with each progression. Your resolution to ‘be fully present’ really struck a nerve as my mind often strays into work mode when I should be enjoying my downtime. I’m also resolving to just cut myself some slack, I wouldn’t expect anyone else to carry the amount of responsibilities I pile on myself! Wishing you a happy, healthy and prosperous 2015!

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 12:13 pm #

      Oh me too, exactly – “my mind often strays into work mode when I should be enjoying my downtime.” Yes! A forgotten task pops into my mind, a design idea has to be sketched right away, and then I’m going down the path of work-thoughts when I’m supposed to be watching a movie, or enjoying company. It’s natural that these thoughts happen but I’m going to focus on writing them down for later, not dwelling on them. Wishing you a wonderful 2015!

  17. Maria January 1, 2015 at 8:12 pm #

    I find it interesting that I have the same goals for 2015. … Or pretty darn similar. To be present – in as much as my mind is constantly full of a zillion things which quite often are not the here and now. By being present I hope to really experience the moments and in doing so appreciate every one.
    To have fun – well to find more joy in my life. I tend to be focused and serious. I want to recapture the inherent joy we are born with.
    Slow, constant improvement – I have some goals for this year (running a faster marathon, more sewing projects, decluttering my home, etc) and realize that everything I want to achieve can be accomplished by taking small steps on a regular basis. Improvement can be obtained by being consistent with our practice.
    Anyway, just wanted to say…. I’m with you Tasia!

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 12:11 pm #

      I like this – “I want to recapture the inherent joy we are born with.” We start out excited about everything, and then as we get older we have more fears. Or I do, anyways. When I was a teenager I thought at 30, I’d be fearless and near invincible! I’d have all the freedom and more knowledge. Funny how things work out.
      It’s all achievable, one day at a time. After all we don’t need to make a week’s worth of progress in a single day. Just one day’s worth. That seems much more manageable doesn’t it? Best of luck achieving your goals! I admire your goal of running a marathon, or rather, improving your times!
      I’ve decided that all good things require discipline, whether it’s eating well, staying fit, learning new skills. It’s fun, but it does require putting in time and getting over obstacles. Consistency and discipline, that’s what will get us there! Thanks for the comment :)

  18. Joanne January 1, 2015 at 8:22 pm #

    Excited about the new patterns! (and your goals sound great, too! : ) )

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 12:06 pm #

      Thanks! Not much longer now, look for news coming this week!

  19. Kjersti January 1, 2015 at 10:17 pm #

    Hi!

    Just wanted to wish you the best for 2015. I’ve been reading your blog since before you started your business, and it has been so interesting to follow you as you and your business has grown. It is inspirational! :) Best of luck!

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 12:06 pm #

      Thanks so much Kjersti! It’s so cool to know people have been reading that long. I’m glad it’s been interesting so far, and I hope it continues to be in the coming year!

  20. Louise January 2, 2015 at 3:17 am #

    I’ve just spent my honeymoon in Iceland and it was incredible (though very snowy!) You’ll have an amazing time there :) happy new year!

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 12:05 pm #

      Oh awesome! What a time to visit, probably the coldest season!

  21. Claudia January 2, 2015 at 5:16 am #

    Happy New Year!

    With the new EU VAT on digital goods, will you still sell your pdf patterns to those in the EU?

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 12:00 pm #

      Happy new year to you as well!
      I’m working with my accountant to sort that all out, but yes, I intend to continue selling PDF patterns to the EU. Our new patterns will be released as both printed and PDF as well. Good question!

  22. Renee January 2, 2015 at 6:39 am #

    Iceland seems to be such a happening vacation spot these last few years. That sounds amazing. We went to the Netherlands for our honeymoon on a Bike + Barge trip from Bruges to Amsterdam. It. Was. Fan. Tast. Tic. If Mr. Sewaholic doesn’t mind, there are wonderful fabric markets in the Netherlands and of course Kantje Boord. KB is amazing and I have never been surrounded by SO MUCH lingerie findings in my life. Happy 2015 to you and I’m looking forward to seeing your adventures.

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 11:57 am #

      I remember reading your blog posts! It was part of the reason I wanted to visit. Mr. Sewaholic won’t mind the fabric outings, he’s pretty happy if there is a coffee shop nearby or at the very least, a comfy chair. So I’m going to have to pack light so I can buy ALL the lingerie supplies, it seems? Exciting!

  23. Carol January 2, 2015 at 6:53 am #

    Tasia, you should be very proud of what you and your staff have accomplished!

    I especially appreciate that your patterns are designed for those of us with a more “pear” orientation (ready-to-wear and the usual commercial patterns don’t work well at all for me). I would love to see more pant or trouser patterns designed for smaller waists and (ahem) larger hips — thanks so very much!

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 11:55 am #

      Thanks Carol! It’s in the works, I know how difficult it is to shop for pants when you have a large waist-to-hip ratio. Is there a specific style of trouser you’d like to see?

  24. Catherine January 2, 2015 at 7:49 am #

    Inspirational as usual Tasia. Happy 2015!

  25. Aleksandra @ Liveaboard Takes the Suburbs January 2, 2015 at 10:54 pm #

    Ahhhh, you will love Iceland! I went for two weeks a couple years ago and I think I’m going again this year. There really is absolutely nowhere like it. Totally magical. You’ll be so inspired! :D

  26. Amanda January 3, 2015 at 8:23 pm #

    All best to you and the Sewaholic crew in 2015! Living in the present is a good goal for sure. If I ran a business I know I’d be thinking about it non-stop, but taking breaks is so important to being a better worker. Enjoy your trip too!

    • Tasia January 5, 2015 at 11:42 am #

      Thank you! Yes, I do think about it all the time.. sometimes the worrying kind of thoughts, sometimes the excited ones! Either way a break always helps. I do feel much more refreshed now!

  27. Kim January 22, 2015 at 12:37 am #

    A little late post, but I am quite behind on my blog reading ;)
    How wonderful that you are coming to the Netherlands!
    I am a true Rotterdam Girl, Please let me know if you want some help on the site seeing! There is a large Fabricmarket in Dordrecht on May 20th. You could take the waterbus with your bike. You could visit the Kinderdijk with the windmills, the old center of Dordrecht and travel back to Rotterdam. The weekmarket in Rotterdam also have a great lot of fabricsellers, and it’s beneath the Kubuswoningen. Because I guess Mr Sewaholic will be traveling with you, it’s nice to have a day planned out with both siteseeing and fabric shopping, right? I would love to help you with a little planning, you can always e-mail me!