I want to start our May update with a personal update. I realized after my trip home that I could no longer work 5 days a week at my day job, work on the blouse project, be a sane, balanced person and do the 100 Blouses Project justice. So I made the decision with my work to reduce my day job schedule to 4 days. This is a big deal for me and for the business. It means that this work gets an additional 8 hours of fresh focused thinking and work a week. Mondays are for my business. I had to muster up a lot of courage to ask my work for this change, a divergence from the norm on a team and in an industry that lives and breaths by the Mon-Fri 40+ hour schedule. But at some point we have to make a decision about the work we value. And I have done that.

I want to thank you all for your patience thus far. Though I do end up having a lot to write here about our progress and am so pleased with how far we’ve come, it is time to take this work to another level, to give it the focus and attention it deserves. I write you from the first such Monday and there is no understating how good it feels.

On the update side – we completed two virtual fittings in May. We are observing limitations with our pattern for our bustiest, curviest clients so we will be doing more work with our pattern to meet this need, recruiting our local community and sewers to participate to make the pattern better. In short the digital pattern alters from a series of sizes and when a client’s measurements are far enough outside the measurement specifications on the patterns, we need to come up with a new set of patterns.

In addition we have begun work adding the embroidery to the back yoke of our final blouses in collaboration with Wearhouse Clothing which is right down the block in downtown Princeton on Mercer Street. It is extremely satisfying to walk our client patter pieces down the block to Wearhouse Clothing and to work with the owner, Joy to add beautiful embroidery with our clients’ names on our blouses.

Major progress was made on the roof for our workshop space over the past month. The top half of the building is completed and all that remains is the back of the building which can be completed in three days. Please send well wishes for 3 days of nice clear sunny weather. It is conceivable that we could move into the workshop in July if the roof is completed in the first half of June. 

Our first apprentice completed 80 hours of our shirtmaking apprenticeship, a major milestone. Congratulations to Sarah Malone. She is completing her very own custom-fit Boss Blouse in Lilac and then we will be celebrating!! Please send her your congratulations. I can tell you that this work is exacting, requires tons of patience, time and effort. We are very proud of her work and so thrilled to have her enthusiasm and hard work on our team.

Sewing progress overall slowed down in May with our most experienced sewer out for a family emergency for a few weeks and our instructor inundated with prom and wedding season. However we are back at it and we are picking up steam again.

Thanks again for all your support. I wish you a lovely start to the summer and serendipity for all your brave acts to make your dreams come true.

Go, fight, win.