Kicking off my Top 5 of 2016 is my Top 5 Misses and a 2016 Summary. This year, I’m only going to do posts on Hits, Misses, and Goals. I’ll post these for the next few Mondays and then probably round out the year with the handmade gifts I made in the holiday rush.
Top 5 Misses
1. Style Arc Floral Misty Jeans
To be fair, these ended up a little tighter than the other pairs I have and I wasn’t expecting that. I have one pair I wear all the time and one pair I wear occasionally, but this one didn’t get worn a lot. I think I just wore it once to be honest. I like them, though, and am hoping that I will wear them in 2017. I’d hate for them to go to waste. I think maybe adding a contrast panel to the sides would be useful. I just need an extra inch maybe in each side. It’s just a matter of finding the time to rip out the seams and do it. 🙂
2. Style Arc Eva Top
It was too tight and didn’t match the line drawing. I like wearing it with high-waisted skirts, though, but it was disappointing overall.
3. Concord v-necks in Rayon fabric
Sadly, these tops didn’t work out after a few washes because of the fabric choices and the fact that the v-neck version is too wide for me. I think a major issue that pulls them down further is that my upper arms are slightly too big for the size I chose so I need to do some alterations there. I plan on altering the neckline for future versions and add ribbon snaps to these so they attach to my bra straps and don’t slip down. The patterned one is also just filled with wonky sewing that I am not happy with because the rayon fabric didn’t want to go through my sewing machine. I think I *need* a coverstitch. 😉
4. Maya Bra
I don’t wear a single version of this because it didn’t get it to work for me. I am still determined to work on it for the future, though! I think the foam bra really gives nice lift and works well for me. I just need to keep trying and adjusting things until I get the fit right. I also think it would be great for a swim top.
These are really a product of not the right material, but they helped me adjust my fit and I ended up getting a bunch of great material for my fall leggings and wear them all the time. In fact, I should get a bunch more cotton lycra so that I can do less laundry. 😉
I’ve been doing this summary for a couple of years now as I find it helpful to see the evolution in my sewing. My first real year of committed sewing was in 2014 even though I started sewing in 2008. By the end of 2014, I was wearing mostly handmade clothing. Now I wear, with maybe 3 or 4 exceptions, all handmade clothing.
In 2014, I made 33 things. In 2015, I made 54. This year, I made 107 things! Some are small (baby clothes, pattern weights) and barely worth a mention (leggings…yawn!). They didn’t even make it on my blog in some cases. I’ve been feeling pretty unproductive this fall due to health issues, but this summary makes me feel better about that. I’ve made a bunch this year and so much to be proud of. In fact, I had to think hard about what I didn’t like that I made this year. That’s really a sign that I am increasing my skill and getting more accurate with fitting. Still lots to learn, especially with bra making, but every year I see progress.
Looking at the year, I can understand why there are some spikes in making things and some slumps. January was a lazy month, because I usually make a lot for Christmas gifts and need a break after that. Although, I did focus on making bras that month and in February and, in general, those are slow projects. March and April was all about prepping a wardrobe for our honeymoon trip so that I wouldn’t need to do laundry that often. We managed to get by with doing laundry twice over our three week vacation and I only needed to clean stuff mid-way through. In May, I was only home the last two weeks of the month and didn’t have a lot of time to sew. June to September tend to be higher volume months as I either sew gaps in my summer wardrobe or sew for the fall. Lots of leggings in September. October, I did some pattern testing and made two costumes. November was low because I didn’t sew except to finish the baby bedding for my friend. I actually had to drop out of a lot of things: pattern testing, CSC shirtmaking month, and others. December, I am back sewing, but it is all Christmas gifts. I put down 9 things made, because of gifts that I am getting through and should be done with pretty soon.
In terms of what I sewed, I sewed a lot of underwear and knit tops. Jeans and shorts are new to my list! I’m happy about that. I only sewed 6 bras. I really need to make some of those and do modifications for my own accessibility. I made 1 coat, my Pepernoot coat, and I love it. If I can make 1 piece for outwear a year, that would be good. I had intentions of getting another M7100 bomber jacket done with fleece lining, but that will have to wait. I still want to get it done so I can wear it this winter, but I need to size up the pattern since it will be lined in fleece and I want a looser fit for extra Christmas dinner induced fluffiness. I made a lot of gifts this year. I really like doing that. I didn’t make a bunch of blazers like I wanted to so hopefully that will change next year. You’ll see more about that in my Top 5 goals later.
In terms of the pattern companies I sewed with, I made a bunch of self-drafted things. Of course, “drafted” is a loose term since they were mostly squares/rectangles or copied from RTW. I am NOT a pattern drafter. I thought about using “no pattern” and RTW copied as separate categories, but I think grouping them together makes more sense to me. I made a bunch of Kitschy Koo Barrie Briefs and that is why that number is so high. I’ll be making a ton more next year. Unsurprisingly, I made a bunch of Cashmerette! I’m a pattern tester and am pretty excited about the fit. Muse wasn’t as high this year. We didn’t have a lot of pattern testing this year and all my non-testing sewing plans with Muse got pushed out for other things. I had intentions of making many more things including a new Melissa dress, some more Philippa dresses or tops and another Gillian wrap top, but never seemed to have the time for it. Hopefully that will change next year. I did make a couple of Jenna cardis, a Jenna top hack and the Philippa top, though. I made a Simplicity wrap top that blew my mind and hope to make more Simplicity patterns. I didn’t make a single Burda pattern and I am not happy about that. I have a ton and love the styles so I am making that one of my goals for next year.