on slowing down

We're a few days into #slowfashionoctober, a conversation/movement instigated by Karen Templer over at Fringe Association as a means for us to dive into what 'slowing down' our fashion or clothing consumption might mean to all of us.

It's a many-sided topic: some folks are getting into the environmental and human consequences of 'fast fashion'; others are getting into the nitty-gritty of making more of their wardrobe... There are so many ways to enjoy the notion of 'slowing down' our wardrobes.

Week One of "Slotober" this year is dedicated to Introductions, so here's mine. I'm Karen, a maker of sweaters for years and years who's just branching out in the wild and wonderful world of sewing (making garments in days rather than months! Yippee!). I call myself a 'creative minimalist,' with all the rhetorical tension that implies. I love being inspired to make things (especially things to wear), but I aspire to a capsule wardrobe of just the right things. I have a yarn stash and a fabric stash, and never enough time to make all the things that I'm inspired to start.

So for me, it seems fitting that my version of Slow Fashion October become about SLOWING MYSELF DOWN.

Boyhood and I had planned to take a major cross-country trip starting this week, heading East to Rhinebeck. Yet the closer we got to our departure date, the more agitated we both seemed to get. Boy confessed to feeling ungrounded as well as sad about leaving his workshop with all his creative tools (unlike me, his creative outlet isn't portable!).


We sat with that feeling, tossed around a few 'what if?'s, and cancelled our trip. We're staying home and creating a generative, healthy, creative staycation space for ourselves, complete with a round of nearly #whole30, walks every day, and a focus on maximum creative time. We're thrilled.

Perfect timing for Slotober, right? I was immediately filled with a desire to DO.ALL.THE.THINGS!, running around making lists of epic proportions. And then I stopped.

Hey waitaminute: there's the word S-L-O-W in there. Maybe that might apply to *how* I'm working this month?

The best way for me to slow down this month is to really allow myself the luxury of focusing on one project at a time. Yup, Project Monogamy. I've been notoriously skittish with projects, working on as many as five at a time, due to deadlines and work constraints for the last few years. This is a perfect opportunity to just settle in and meditate over a project. Helpful that the project in question is the gorgeous cardigan White Pine by the fantabulous Amy Christoffers - a cabled bit of loveliness that requires good, solid attention lest a twist go the wrong way when you're not looking.

So no binge-watching "NCIS" this month; no flitting off to work "just a few rows" on this or that other project with its siren song... Just me, a little soothing ambient background music, and The Pines of Rhinebeck. Until it's done.

Knitting is supposed to be meditation, right? It's that thing we imagine sinking into with complete flow after a hard workday... it's what we dream about when the kids are melting down before dinner, or when we're stuck in traffic... "If only I could be quietly sitting on the couch, enjoying the yarn moving through my fingers and the satisfying click of the needles..."

So why not be there with it? Let's slow down and just knit together this month. You know what project I'll be bringing...!