Is the death of blogs killing the indie patterns?

HuffPo and the Guardian shout out blogs are dead.  New mediums take its place, and in the sewing world we’re starting to see less blogs and more instagrams.  But dead?

I’m old enough to have been part of the LiveJournal trend.  I had a blog long before they were mainstream (although neither of those were sewing related).  I’ve worked at being the next great sewing blog on this thing in the past and I’ve moved on from that goal.  Why shouldn’t blogging?

A friend of mine sews and he and I had seriously thought about starting an indie pattern line (same one that tried out for Project Runway if you’ve read other posts); together or separate we hadn’t decided.  Blogging is a huge part of that, because of the way it’s set up these indie designers are your friends, and blogging has a lot to do with that feeling.  If blogs are dying, then it stands to reason that it’ll catch up to the petri dish that is the SBC.   Eventually, the patterns will be less about the personality of the blogger and more about the pattern, same reason Ann Person and Kerstin Martensson had successful indie companies all those years ago.  Even now, Suede from PR made a clothing line and didn’t go the indie route, he went to Simplicity with his patterns (although we can argue he isn’t the superstar Nancy Zieman, Person or Martensson are/were).

Blogging started out as a way to LiveJournal with your own piece of the web, and with sewing in general it turned into a sewing journal that people wanted to look at.  There will always be people that want to see what you do, and people will always want to share what they are doing because they don’t want someone to know they made their clothing or they don’t know anyone that cares what they do.  So no, blogging in this context won’t die and it probably never will; just the readership will change to those that like this sort of thing.  And this is only important to those that make money off of it, otherwise they will move on to other mediums and will keep having to change as technology does.

But indie patterns, like blogging, will become specialized.  It will be less about the personality and more about the quality; it will be intimate.  It won’t be about having your patterns on the biggest blogs, it won’t be about the popularity contest and it won’t be a big sleepover with 50 of your best friends.  But unlike mainstream blogging, the SBC will stave the death off, but eventually it’ll go back to the old Geocities days: it’ll be there, but only those that really want to see it will.

When that happens, then indie patterns will also see a decline of the companies and number because it’ll be less about supporting a “friend” and more about the quality of the pattern.

TL;DR The Update Post of a Block of Text

Well, here it is a month after I was going to restart. And I haven’t done it yet.  My restart was planned during a time when I thought that I would have things settle down.  In the end, my dad died the first of December and I am taking care of my mother full time.  There is a lot of TL, DR in this, but it has been a hard 4 or so years in my own life.  The blog, obviously, has suffered from this.

Over the last few years, I had thought to rebrand myself, start trying to monetize and offer patterns, for free or sale; I hadn’t really decided.  On the latter, I know how to make something I want, but I am not formally trained and I felt (and in some ways still do feel) that I could do it better then many of the indie companies out there.

Then I started to really listen to people I knew, people that sewed and GOMI, which I lurk there.  Both Pattern Review and GOMI really brought home that I am not a mean girl, I am not going to play the game it takes to become part of the cool kids, and I really don’t want to live like this is my HS career all over again.  My dad’s cancer and death (of which he died cancer free) brought home life is too short for stupid goals.  And for me this IS a stupid goal.  (But if you make good PDF indie patterns, GREAT!!  I hope you get super successful at it because we need GOOD indie designers!)

After a friend of mine went to try out for Project Runway a short time ago and had about convinced me to go (Season 12 and 13 if you care).  I didn’t.  I realized through all of that trying out process (I did not get past the contract and making 2 samples) and applying it to the blog and my own sewing, too that:

  • I am not a fame whore.  I don’t care if you know who I am or not.
  • My content will never be a lot.  I don’t, and won’t, produce things that are inferior to my skill and/or won’t wear to get content on this thing.
  • I don’t know as much as I think I do.

So right now, I enrolled in fashion design at college.  What it means for the blog is that I am exactly who I have always been and this blog is a journal that I can map my progress and have a place where I have the information I need to be better.  I hope you stick around through this leg of the journey.