Not the fabric type, the experience.


I was very excited about my plan for “Sewing the Seventies” — the dress from Burda’s ’70s special issue. I cut it out — main fabric and lining; I even manage to sew parts of it.

And then I ran out energy completely. It was like my batteries were suddenly removed. Not a stitch more.

And that was a few weeks ago. I haven’t sewn anything since. Sewing is usually my refuge from work. I try to squeeze in a few moments here and there on less busy work days sometimes. Occasionally, a day on the weekend, when I have a longer stretch of time.

Well, it feels like that was then, and now is a very different reality. I’m just tired, and there’s no “second wind,” no shifting gears, no sense of an escape. I use up whatever energy I have (or manage to fake) to get through my weekly work tasks, and that’s all I’ve got.

To stay sane through this time, I’ve been reading and helping myself with what I call “the Sophia Loren method.” When I was a teenager, I stumbled upon an interview with Sophia Loren in one of my mother’s glossies. Loren told the interviewer she loves “working from her bed.” I’m not sure what that really means for a glamorous retired actress, but I imagine she meant responding to emails from adoring friends and fans while sipping Prosecco.

Dial down the glamour to nothing and you got my situation: work email, typing up work materials, and reading work materials in bed while sipping a cup of green tea (which, I try to convince myself, will give me a caffeine boost and make me feel less antsy). This, by the way, is all happening after a day at work, grown-up clothes and all.

“The Sophia Loren method” is countered by the fear of turning into a childless stay-in-bed mom (thank you, Arrested Development for this priceless label for my anxiety).

If I had a back-up me with enough energy, here’s what she would be sewing:

This dress from Burda 3/2017, in turquoise rayon crepe (it’s already traced and adjusted!).


This top from Burda 3/2018 — an issue I got in a care package along with too much chocolate and some beautiful fabrics. I have a fabric I could use for this (but my doppelganger would need to do the rest):


If the doppelganger and I could put together a small factory of impish helpers (seven dwarves?), we’d try recreating these looks from Szycie 1/2018 a.k.a. the Polish edition of the Spanish magazine Patrones:


This one, though, definitely not in white. I will never understand white pants, ever. If you wear them, kudos to you. I’d have to laminate myself to pull it off. I love the jacket and the camisole…


This is an outfit from the plus-size section, so would only be possible if I could count on my doppelganger being better at grading patterns than I am. I wouldn’t have thought of this combination of garments on my own and I find it actually pretty brilliant.


That’s all, folks. I hope you have more energy than I do. Use it wisely.

Yours, in boundless envy.


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I write about sewing, knitting, and may sometimes be tempted to talk about books.

5 thoughts on “burnout”

  1. Sorry to hear that your energy is low or probably has been low, hope you have recovered by now but if not I would suggest that you take it easy and don’t be very judgamental with yourself (in case you’re feeling bad about it) . It is ok sometimes to just not do anything and let your mind and body relax and refill the batteries!


    1. I think several things came together for me. Work-life “balance” getting dangerously unbalanced, grief, a winter that felt almost endless and meant too much time indoors and with too little movement… Things are getting better gradually, I’m happy to say. And I’m even getting some sewing done slowly.

      Liked by 1 person

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