Thursday, May 17, 2012


I know it's not only me - I read several blogs about people doing much the same thing. Simple living, thriftiness, the new home front - call it what you want, it essentially comes down to trying to buy less and make more, to do things for yourself rather than paying someone else to do it for you.

It's easy to feel disheartened by the number of things not yet achieved. I look around and see the housework not done, see the things I still buy instead of making, things like bread and soap which are among the first things that you start making for yourself, as well as cleansers and make up and toothpaste, containing chemicals I would rather eliminate.

However, when I take stock of all the things I have managed to change, and the comparison between my life now and my life one, two, three years ago - or, more strikingly, between my lifestyle and that of my more stylish sister, then I realise how much I have achieved and particularly the importance of building up slowly. I am now using homemade cleaning products almost exclusively, I use knitted washcloths and have even made a dress stitched entirely by hand.

So while my dream of an entirely handmade wardrobe - possibly using an adaptation of Regency stays rather than a bra - feels long distant, and likewise my hopes of using only homemade beauty treatments, today I am congratulating myself on the distance already covered, and reminding myself that this is a journey for life. Learning new skills, and learning to manage my time and commitments so that I can fit all this crafting and making around my job, evening classes and social relationships must be a gradual, sustainable process, almost imperceptible, and I need to remember to take time to acknowledge my achievements along the way.

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