Thirty-nine, and moving on………

14 Nov Thirty-nine, and moving on………


If 60 is the new 40, then surely I am still in my 30s, but not for long………..

Yesterday was my birthday, and while it was a good one, I am mindful that in one year I will bid farewell to a decade I really enjoyed.

Google the phrase ‘aging gracefully’ and you’ll find advice on maintaining a good attitude, wearing appropriate makeup, taking vitamins, getting enough exercise, getting enough sleep, eating a proper diet, and everything in between. This is all great advice, but frankly my children and their friends practice this lifestyle.

I’ll continue to do all of the above, but I want to enthusiastically embrace the new 40 in 364 days!
For me, this means bringing more focus into my life which includes focusing on my wardrobe.

To celebrate 40 the second time around I intend to make 40 garments that anyone revisiting this wonderful age needs in her closet. When the big day rolls around, I would like to at least dress like I’m ready 😉
Up first:
Butterick 6103

B6103 3imageimageimage

How many times have I craved a jacket to pull an outfit together? Whether it is to take jeans and leggings to the next level or add panache to a simple dress, a long jacket always brings about a little polish. I also love the pattern’s princess seams which allow for easy alterations to easily achieve a flattering fit.

I invite you to follow along with me as I sew with purpose during the next year, PIN my favorites (coming soon) reveal my mentors , inspirations and hopefully greet the future in style.

Until soon 🙂

PS……… I am very flattered to be included on the BurdaStyle 2015 50 Best Sewing Blogs again this year.Thank you so much! Click here to view the entire list.


  • Angela
    Posted at 04:15h, 14 November Reply

    Oh YES!! I am very close to you in age, so I will follow this with great interest! My wardrobe is painfully bad… while I”ve kept to the RTW fast, I’ve also not made anything in so very long. To say that my wardrobe could use an overhaul is an understatement, but I am so challenged when it comes to pulling together sharp-looking outfits. This should be a fun and educational year!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:15h, 16 November Reply

      Thank you for the comment, Angela 🙂 Pulling it all together is certainly the challenge for me..

  • Cindy Aymes
    Posted at 04:24h, 14 November Reply

    Happy Birthday! You’re not getting older, you’re getting better! Enjoy your 40th – again!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:16h, 16 November Reply

      I like the way you think, Cindy! I’ve got a few hundred days lefts before celebrating the big one 😉

  • Sew, Jean Margaret
    Posted at 05:31h, 14 November Reply

    Happy birthday Sarah. You are an inspiration to so many sewists out there. I look forward to following along with you sewing with a purpose and hopefully I can pick up a few tips along the way.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:16h, 16 November Reply

      Thank you, Jean! You are an inspiration too 🙂

  • Vicki Maiorano
    Posted at 05:52h, 14 November Reply

    Suddenly I feel so young! 3 more years until I reach 40 (again). Will follow along on your journey. Happy birthday 🙂

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:17h, 16 November Reply

      Thank you, Vicki! Anything to feel younger, huh? 😉

  • Margaret M Allen
    Posted at 07:00h, 14 November Reply

    We are, within a month’s time, exactly the same age. What a wonderful idea – 40 new garments! Way easier than sixty, for sure. Just brilliant! Now I’d better get starte on sewing…

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:19h, 16 November Reply

      Thank you, Margaret! My gift to myself, I suppose

      • goodbyevalentino
        Posted at 06:20h, 16 November Reply

        🙂 🙂

  • Ruth Forrester
    Posted at 07:05h, 14 November Reply

    A few more years don’t really matter but an extra 3″ to hemlines do…………!
    Hope you enjoyed your special day and will celebrate many, many more.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:21h, 16 November Reply

      Hi Ruth,
      Thanks for the birtday wishes. We’ll see about the hemline – I’m quite shorter than you.

  • Myra
    Posted at 07:13h, 14 November Reply

    Happy belated birthday Sarah! And congratulations on your Burda selection, You always look so stylish and I don’t think that will change with age for you! I celebrated my second round of 40 this year already and feel the best that I have ever felt in my life! I do understand what you mean by “aging gracefully”, and it has been on my mind… I never want to look like an “Old lady” trying to be young, LOL!!! I truly believe in one of Coco Chanel’s many quotes, “a girl should be two things: classy and fabulous”! (you are both my dear!)

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:22h, 16 November Reply

      What a sweet comment, Myra! Speaking of again gracefully……… you don’t look a day over 40 – the first time around!

  • Roxanne
    Posted at 07:31h, 14 November Reply

    Happy birthday, Sarah.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:22h, 16 November Reply

      Thank you, Roxanne!

  • Becky Bagwell
    Posted at 07:47h, 14 November Reply

    Congrats on making the best sewing blog list! Reading your blog always brings a smile to my face and a yearning to sew! Thanks!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:23h, 16 November Reply

      Thank you, Becky!

  • Lori
    Posted at 08:00h, 14 November Reply

    Happy birthday, Sarah, age is just a number but it still gets in my head every time a birthday rolls around. I can’t wait to see your garments. I really have been eliminating garments ( ill-fitting, worn out or not really me) this season. I know your new makes will be well thought out and perfect wardrobe builders. Congrats on the award, I made it too, it is such an honor.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:24h, 16 November Reply

      Many thanks, Lori! I knew your lovely blog would make the list. You are soooo industrious!

  • Timea Schmidt
    Posted at 08:01h, 14 November Reply

    Happy Birthday Sarah! Looking forward to seeing your celebratory wardrobe the next 12 month!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:24h, 16 November Reply

      Thank you, Timea! I’ll give it my all 🙂

  • Margene Yeaton
    Posted at 08:10h, 14 November Reply

    Happy November Birthday Girl! This is the time of year to GIVE THANKS and I thank you for the GV blog. Finding you has jump started the last chapter of my life, since 39 went by some time ago. Still a girl can dream. Look forward to your next creation!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:25h, 16 November Reply

      …… and I give thanks for reading such a kind comment. Many thanks, Margene! We are all here for each other!

  • Julie Starr
    Posted at 08:10h, 14 November Reply

    Although the saying is that clothes make the man (woman?), style, grace and beauty all come from within. You’ve already got it made when it comes to those. Happy belated birthday, Sarah. May the coming year be your best yet.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:27h, 16 November Reply

      Ahhhh……… thank you, Julie!

  • Janet Wheeler
    Posted at 08:23h, 14 November Reply

    Happy belated birthday. Congratulations on making the best blog list. It’s well deserved. I look forward to another year of inspiration.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:27h, 16 November Reply

      Many thanks, Janet!

  • Mary Funt
    Posted at 08:26h, 14 November Reply

    I love your idea of sewing with a plan. I think that considering the time, thought and sometimes pricey fabric that a well planned wardrobe makes such sense. I’ll be watching for your choices. Happy Birthday. One of my sons shares the day with you.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:30h, 16 November Reply

      Thank you, Mary! I wrote the post the day after my birthday (November 12), but it was published two days after my birthday.
      BTW……….. I noticed you mentioned in your last post that you made the lovely black dress for a client. Do you sew professionally or have a business? For some reason I thought it was just your hobby and your skills and knowledge are so impressive.

  • Angela
    Posted at 08:34h, 14 November Reply

    I will have to watch this list of 40. I am creeping up there myself and I may need those items too 🙂 while my style is a bit different. .I can always see myself in items you sew. Your top 50 blog award is well deserved.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:32h, 16 November Reply

      Thank you, Angela! The beauty of sewing is customizing the garment to suit your style, so I hope you’ll take away a few ideas 🙂

  • Rhonda
    Posted at 09:15h, 14 November Reply

    I’d love to do the 40 challenge with you. Helps me to be accountable and get it done. Looking forward to your posts.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:34h, 16 November Reply

      Great! Let’s do it together, Rhonda 🙂

  • Heather Myers
    Posted at 09:28h, 14 November Reply

    Happy belated birthday, Sarah! That is quite a challenge, I will love following your progress.

  • Rhoda K
    Posted at 09:47h, 14 November Reply

    Happy birthday and congrats on being included on the best sewing blogs list! Although I’m a bit past the new 40, I shall follow with interest..

  • Anne
    Posted at 09:55h, 14 November Reply

    What a good idea. I look forward to following along. I can’t join you, though – as another poster said, although I’m once again embracing the RTW fast, I’m not sewing nearly enough – partly because I’m still learning the necessary skill and partly because of all the sewing my daughter has requested for her wedding.

  • MaryEllen
    Posted at 10:09h, 14 November Reply

    I love your birthday sewing challenge & look forward to sewing/following with you . I turn the next big 60+5 or 45 by your age numbering in February and need to up my game to not look frumpy.
    You are such an inspiration !!!

    • Marguerite
      Posted at 21:56h, 21 November Reply

      Hi Maryellen! Just read your comment and had to reply! I just turned 65 last week so I’m thrilled to hear it’s 45 again! Just kidding! Like you, I don’t want to look frumpy either. Looking forward to the 40 garments challenge. I love this blog, one of the classiest out there for sure!

  • MaryEllen
    Posted at 10:11h, 14 November Reply

    Also congrats on your well deserved blogger award

  • Mary Lynn Cheely
    Posted at 10:16h, 14 November Reply

    A belated Happy Birthday! You look terrific!! Good luck with your 40 sewing projects and the forthcoming book (can hardly wait). You may find, as have I, that you have a beautiful grand baby! Our little granddaughter
    Will turn 1 on Monday and the pleater has come out of the storage! Sewing for me will be taking a back seat. However, not many babies look good in ponte,etc. so I’d best make something for myself actually!

  • Janie de Bruin
    Posted at 10:31h, 14 November Reply

    Happy birthday!!!

  • Bernadette O'Brien
    Posted at 10:36h, 14 November Reply

    Happy Birthday Sarah! What a great idea. I recently retired and decided that I need to overhaul my wardrobe. I look forward to your ideas. The first one is a winner.

  • Barbara Carlon
    Posted at 10:37h, 14 November Reply

    I reached 40 (again) earlier this year,so I can definitely relate to how it feels to be so (young)! You are a wonderful blogger and a beautiful model of all the clothes you make. I’m looking forward to seeing your personal challenge to make 40 garments this year. I may join you in some of those. What fun! Happiest of Birthdays to you and congrats on your award form Burda!

  • Deborah Penner
    Posted at 11:16h, 14 November Reply

    You are ageless! Great idea! I am also near this age ( just a bit above by three years ). It is so wonderful that in the 21st century those of use who are mature may dress in an up-to-date manner.

  • Cissie Wellons
    Posted at 11:28h, 14 November Reply

    I need to sew with a plan, too! You can be my inspiration!

  • Susan L
    Posted at 11:33h, 14 November Reply

    Happy birthday, and what a great way to celebrate 40 the second time around. I will be celebrating my second 40th birthday next year, and I love the idea of having a new wardrobe to do it with. I will be following your progress, as I am certain many others will.

  • Lisbeth Dambrowski
    Posted at 11:40h, 14 November Reply

    I will be interested to see what you select to make. I’m a bit older than you and I struggle with selecting age appropriate casual clothing that is flattering. I think this is a great idea and will look forward to your posts.

  • Beth (SunnyGalStudio)
    Posted at 11:46h, 14 November Reply

    Happy Birthday and I look forward to seeing what you come up with. I never sew with a plan, just go where my fancy takes me 🙂

  • Rose Britton
    Posted at 12:06h, 14 November Reply

    Congratulations on the Burda blog award — and greatest thanks for the forthcoming new wardrobe.

  • Ann-Britt Uhrbom
    Posted at 12:17h, 14 November Reply

    Congratulations Sara! I passed 40 for the second time 6 years ago and I have not noticed any major difference. I will be happy or sad for the same things as when I was 40 the first time. I still think about clothes, jewelry and make up. My old aunt who now is 92 years old said when she turned 80 that she probably would not buy so many clothes in a future. Guess who still likes shopping? Well my 92-year-old aunt. Lovely!
    I look forward seeing your 40 new garments next year!

  • Cynthia Flagg
    Posted at 12:39h, 14 November Reply

    Happy belated Birthday! I would have easily believed that you just turned 40 (the real one). You look amazing and I look forward to your 40 outfits. I’m only three years behind you and I love your style, so I’m interested in taking fashions cues from you.

  • Rebecca Wood
    Posted at 13:21h, 14 November Reply

    Happy birthday! I love jackets to break up my figure. And I really like this pattern’s illustrations. I’m excited to see how yours turns out and read your review.

  • Libby Mueller
    Posted at 13:29h, 14 November Reply

    Happy Birthday. I have been “40″ for the last three years. You and GV have helped to keep me there with your creative and inspiring posts. Best wishes and many happy returns!

  • Jennifer Miller
    Posted at 14:47h, 14 November Reply

    Happy Birthday Sarah! And big congratulations on your Burda award. I just had a birthday, too, and Paul McCartney wrote that special song for me (…will you still feed me…)! Will be very happy (and no doubt inspired) to join in your 40 outfit style watch! 🙂

  • Martha Ann Murray
    Posted at 15:45h, 14 November Reply

    Ahh a fellow Scorpio! I hope your. Irthday was fabulous! I will celebrate mine next week in New York – first stop will be fabric fondling! I envy you celebrating your “new” 40 – that birthday was quite a while ago for me, I’m not sure I even remember it to tell the truth! I will look forward to your every post during the next year – you will be a busy lady with 40 garments in your plans – you rock Sarah!

  • Lori Feld
    Posted at 16:06h, 14 November Reply

    Happy Birthday! I am about a year behind you but I wish I looked as fabulous as you do!

  • Kathi Sorensen
    Posted at 17:16h, 14 November Reply

    I just turned 73!,, and while I look forward for continued good health, I cant avoid the fact that my future is limited. I intend to make the most of the days I have left and try to make my world a better place, ,which I’m ashamed to say, I haven’t always.
    I’m in Japan right now and in a moment of weakness, bought 5 meters of a grey wool fabric that has woven in little dots of red blue and white. On the reverse its plaid. , I love it but I’m not sure what pattern is appropriate for it or me! I bought it with a dress in mind and got so much just in case… We had to go out yesterday and buys a special duffle bag so I can take it home this week. Any suggestions?

  • Sue Bateman
    Posted at 17:46h, 14 November Reply

    Happy Birthday Sarah, you know age is a state of mind you really are only as young as you feel .
    Love the look of the jacket I will enjoy seeing it come together . Thanks for the continued inspiration.

  • Denise Dooley
    Posted at 20:13h, 14 November Reply

    Looks like we were born just days apart. My how-can-I-possibly-be-60 birthday was the 12th. I sure don’t feel my age, but then I’m not sure what 60 should feel like. I’m not officially doing the RTW fast this year, but have purchased very little since it is difficult to find well made, wearable and fashionable clothing which fits. I feel for those who do not sew. Looking forward to seeing your plan unfold.

  • Ann Geocaris
    Posted at 22:08h, 14 November Reply

    Happy B-Day! I’ve been reading your blog for quite some time now, but always thought you were younger than me…but now I know we’re about the same age. Another great reason to exercise and keep in shape is to wear all those great fashions so well. Thanks for the inspiration!

  • Mary Kelly
    Posted at 10:46h, 15 November Reply

    Happy birthday Sarah. I love how you have decided to celebrate. I retired last year, having spent more than 45 years in healthcare. This was a career that covered everything from entry level to management. Fast forward 18 months and entry into another decade of life., now it is time to reinvent myself as a woman free to return to one of my passions , sewing. Now I find more pleasure in style , fashion, and comfort. I have begun my creation of my 70’s wardrobe. I will be following you as you travel along your journey., and parcelling in my own special way., building a sustainable wardrobe

  • Alice Elliot
    Posted at 12:37h, 15 November Reply

    Happy Birthday Sarah,
    I’ve always loved the idea of a frock coat, but always thought I’d have to make too many alterations. Can’t wait to see what you do with this one…..and the remaining 39 for the year.

  • Charry
    Posted at 14:45h, 15 November Reply

    Happy birthday and you certainly don’t look a day over 30! Best of luck to your new goals.

  • Gerhild Turner
    Posted at 19:55h, 15 November Reply

    Happy Birthday. I can tell you from experience that it only gets better.

  • twotoast
    Posted at 23:43h, 15 November Reply

    I’ve just entered the decade that you will be leaving and this decade change certainly makes you reconsider many lifestyle, dressmaking and sewing choices. I am moving more towards stylish but comfortable clothing – I love the Lagenlook and Tina Given’s style. I am also making purses wallets and bags – great, fun projects to make when I don’t want to make an actual garment.

    I love the idea of your forty garments – and look forward to seeing the wardrobe. Would you consider throwing in a a bag or purse too?

  • Mitzi Richardson
    Posted at 18:33h, 19 November Reply

    You seem to one of those blessed souls to whom “aging gracefully” comes naturally. This isn’t so for large numbers of us. In my 20s I decided to age gracefully. By my 30s I figured out that I’d probably miss a lot of adventure, plus what one person thinks “graceful” another does not, so, the devil take it all, I decided to simply enjoy myself and, when my time comes, to go out kicking and screaming while making a complete fool of myself. Am now in my 70s, and thus far I’m happy with my choice. There’s a lot to be said for both choices. I do love, love, love beautiful clothes and really love your blog. You are an inspiration to so many of us!

  • Marguerite
    Posted at 22:03h, 21 November Reply

    Happy Birthday Sarah! I’m thrilled that by these new calculations I’m 45! But the speed at which the real 45 went and the “new ” 45 approached is staggering! Enjoy 59 for all it”s worth! Looking forward to those 40 garments!

  • sally davies
    Posted at 21:18h, 01 December Reply

    Happy Belated Birthday! You look great and your clothing ( classic with an edge) is totally appropriate for almost any age. Why would you want to change what works?

  • Laura Casey
    Posted at 08:53h, 03 August Reply

    Well I’m not anywhere close to your age….(68 and counting) but life is still very good! This summer was the first time I sewed with a “purpose” European river cruise, starting in Prague and ending in Amsterdam……and I wore absolutely everything I made-Started with a color scheme, for me my base is always black and white…then added an accent-Turquoise to match my specs… was so much fun, hung them in a separate area in my closet, so I could see my progress, figured out accessories, shoes etc…..then on to the next garment. The only thing I didn’t wear was a long skirt with a cute turquoise shirt, casual but chic for the dinner hour….however going to a 70th birthday party at the end of the month with a theme of “California Dreaming” and I plan to wear it then…probably with a black knit top.
    I also made a list of the items I wanted to take, 4 slacks, 6 tops etc…..then picked fabric intentionally for the trip…..I loved sewing this way…may consider doing it again this fall, by just filling in the gaps in my wardrobe…
    I look forward to your purposeful sewing!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 20:51h, 03 August Reply

      Hi Laura! What a great trip and your wardrobe sounds so well planned! Sewing with a purpose is always a good thing 🙂 Welcome home!

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