Saturday, January 2, 2016

2015 Hits and Misses

#sewingtop5 - The Top 5 of 2015!

Hey All! Hope you're having a great first weekend of the year. I really love this quiet time when so many people have time off to spend with their loved ones. It's been great being home with Beej and having two three-day-weekends in a row to relax together. I'm also really enjoying reading all the blog recaps.

2015 was a turbulent year for me both personally and professionally. In fact, I would never in a million years have guessed it would have played out like it did. But you know what? It wasn't boring. I took on a lot of new challenges, was overwhelmed, learned a lot, and also managed to surprise myself. Unfortunately, for a while there I lost my confidence and things got rough. Looking back now, though, I can see how much I learned - not just new skills, etc. - but what I learned about myself and how much emotional growth I experienced. I always knew I was a hard worker, but this year I learned what I'm really made of. I'm made of steel, actually, and I'm going to remind myself of this the next time my confidence wanes. (Sorry this part's a bit vague. I never know quite how much of my personal life to share.) On to the sewing...

I'm encouraged by the fact that it was difficult to decide which five were my hits. Here they are in no particular order:


1.) True Bias Sutton:  This got the most wear - especially the first part of the year. Love how simple and easy to throw on it is, but the finishing makes it looks so polished.


2.) True Bias Roscoe Dress: I've worn this all through the holidays, and if I had three yards of appropriate fabric I would be making another one right now. It's so simple, but if you follow her instructions carefully, you will end up with an impeccable finish. 


3.) Closet Case Clare Coat: This felt like such an achievement - especially after attempting three coats last year - but it's actually very simple to make. The raglan sleeves take some of the pressure off, as do the sew-on snaps. I LOVE how well this fits me.

Frilly underpants make me happy #imakemyunderwear #sewinglingerie #sewingblog

4.) Secrets of Lingerie Cotton Mini: It's well documented now that I love making underwear, but this style surprised me and challenged my practical mind. I always imagined that cotton woven knickers would be uncomfortable and unflattering, but they so aren't. They're charming and frilly and fun and totally bring out the Laura Ashley in me.


5.) Greenstyle Laurel Tunic: This is another of my most-worn makes. I'm happy I was able to modify it and get the fit they way I like it. Also, the neckline lays nice and flat.

Now on to the misses. Most of this was me trying to learn too many things at once. Jeans AND bramaking? Such hubris.

Culotte fantasy #sewingblog #culottes

1.) Burda Plus Culottes - UFO: I don't really regret this because my impulse was to just go for it from the beginning, but by the time I got to the waistband I could see how insane the crotch was going to be. I had forgotten that I had read somewhere that Burda patterns are pretty tall. One thing I would like to work on for future sewing is to use my math skills to help with fitting - e.g. measure the distance between my waist and crotch and how that compares, etc.

2.) Closet Case Patterns Ginger Jeans - no photo/no link. I got to the waistband on my muslin and kept having to unpick and resew. It kept twisting, which makes me think it was because of how I cut it. But, again, I saw issues with the length of the back yoke being too long for my frame.


3.) Pin Up Girls Bra: I did the fun part of putting it together, but I've been putting off the tedious part of working out fitting issues. The upper cups are too large.


4.) Seamwork Aberdeen  - Yuck, blech, gross. Hate everything about it.

Not sure why it's longer on one side #firsttimesewingsilk #lasttimesewingsilk #acqualina

5.) Hot Patterns Acqualina Riviera in Silk: This is on the miss list because of my struggle with the fabric and how that shows in my execution, but also I think I like the idea of wearing silk more than the reality. I mean, it's natural and feels luxurious and all, but something about it makes me feel frumpy. Also, I hate that it's so delicate that even water can leave a stain.

So there it is. A tough year of highs and lows, but a good year for learning and growth. Here's my post from last year. I'm happy to see that I've already improved quite a bit.  My resolutions(for sewing) involve sharpening my focus a bit and working on fitting. I'm also going to continue to explore lingerie sewing and bra making. It's low-stakes sewing, but there are a lot of techniques involved that are great to practice.  Mostly, though, I will continue to experiment, practice, and have fun.

I wish you all a wonderful 2016 full of love and peace and all good things.


  1. I didn't realise that work life had been so tricky for you this year - but I hope it all goes better in 2016! I'm about to make a Clare coat myself, so I"ll be asking you for help, I'm sure! You've made some lovely things this year!

  2. Thanks, Gillian. And thanks for creating a platform for everyone to reflect. I think the Clare coat is going to be a walk in the park for you.

  3. Oh the wonders of the garments that didn't quite make it .... but the learning potential is huge right?! That being said the wins so clearly make up for the fails particularly the garments we wear all the time and I like your list of faves. Not so good outcomes are darn tiring so I hope you have a much better year this year too.

    1. Thanks! Looking over my faves, I'm noticing that they're the easier projects. I got into trouble when I became more ambitious. But as you said, the learning potential is huge, so I'm glad that I pushed myself.

  4. That coat is killer! To a wonderful 2016!!

    1. Thanks, Annie! I love wearing my coat so much. Cheers to a fantastic 2016!