StyleArc Demi Drape Top. (Yes, Elle, StyleArc includes fabric swatches in with their patterns! But that will be a separate post.)
Welcome to my 2011 sewing retrospective! This is a long post, so get your favorite beverage and settle in. At least there aren't any commercials.
In 2011, I sewed 22 garments (9 dresses, 3 skirts, 4 tops, 1 jumper, 1 vest, 1 nightgown, 1 flannel night shirt, and 2 leggings) plus 1 bag, 3 finger puppets and 10 pairs of underwear. Eclectic, huh? I didn't sew as much as I wanted to because cooking good-for-me food got in the way; thankfully cooking is faster for me now that it doesn't take me an eon to chop veggies anymore.
New Look 6071 is my absolute favorite. Finished at the end of October, I've been wearing this dress during this relatively mild fall and winter with a brown cami, brown cardi, brown stockings and brown mary janes (too bad I don't have any pix of me dressed like that!). It is comfy, classy, and I feel stylish.
I think the cross-over front is just awesome.
Simplicity 2406 is a close second. The obi sash is amazing and I love the pockets!
New Look 6000 (sounds like a pattern...from the future!) was a very retro 60's style dress. I struggled with the zipper on this one, but moved it to the side for great results.
Also loved this retro 60's pencil skirt, Simplicity 2154. Loved it so much, I made it in brown, too.
Butterick 5559, sewn while catsitting Buddy, is another favorite.
He helped a LOT.
I'm also fond of this Burda 7379 with a crazy ruffle. Because who doesn't love a crazy ruffle, am I right??
LOVE this ruffle
And of course I love new underwear made with Antoinette's make-yer-own-undies tutorial.
I made three fingerpuppets after being inspired by an ad in an Austin newspaper. The pig is my favorite.
Here's my "inspiration" ad:
Dr. Jeff LaMour, do you have any idea what you inspired?
I didn't like this Vogue 1236 when it was done, mostly my fault. The neckline was too low so I sewed the straps with a larger SA, which brought the bottom of the dress up too high. And it's too small in my hips. Plus I used different fabric for the facings and I feel like they are on display.
I wore it once and never wore it again:
Other people love the Jalie tulip top; I sewed it probably a size or two too big. I never wore it out of the house. Its major problems disappear, as long as I keep my arms out to the side like this:
I don't know, I spent hours on Simplicity 50's retro jumper and feel like a kindergarten teacher. I wish I had cut it from uncut corduroy which would have made it look like velveteen, probably, and give it less of a teacher vibe. Worn only once.
I really don't like this Burda 7696. The V is too low, and I shouldn't have cut the bottom of the dress so large. This is my "reworked" version and it still needs more work. I think I wore it twice, then started taking it apart.
I gave my half-done "muslin" of this dress which was too big for me to a coworker who finished it--it looks great on her.
I think if I had made this Simplicity dress in a smaller size or a darker color I would have liked it more. The cowl is heavy due to its size (and my double knit fabric choice) and too large.
However the green muslin of this dress, with the articulated sleeve, is a favorite nightgown of mine.
Obviously, I don't wear it with a belt to sleep!
But what else happened?
- I wrote my 100th pattern review this fall and my third pattern review star followed shortly after.
- The New Look 6000 dress was featured on patternreview's blog and twitter feed. Thanks Deepika and the Pattern Review crew! I featured the dress on my holiday card with Suede.
- Butterick featured the 5559 dress on their Facebook page in Nov.
- I went to NYC's garment district for the first time ever back in June, with Antoinette. Meg featured our trip on her super useful blog, Shop the Garment District. I also had my "sewing-rite-of-passage" photo taken with Kashi of Metro Textiles. At my house, Antoinette pulled my hand-me-down serger out of the closet and showed me how to use it (though I still haven't serged "for real" yet)
- I went again in September for Elizabeth and Robin's shopping day.
- I attended 3 sewing conferences: PR weekend Chicago in May, which kickstarted my sewing again and inspired me to take my sewing up to the next level. Thanks Tina!
Old and new friends!
- American Sewing Expo in Sept which is where I met Suede. The Simplicity folks gave me a copy of their Fabric Guide to say thanks for my support of Simplicity and New Look. I also took a serger class. And a zipper flower class, can't forget about that.
Meetup with Elle!
- Went to PR weekend Austin in Nov where Leslie outdid herself. I now have a custom-fitted pants pattern but still need to sew it up. I also was introduced to TexStyles which I wish was in NJ.
- I bought a sewing gauge and use it all the time! It is SO handy. It enables me to do things like this:
- I finally started ironing my seams during the sewing process as per Ann on Gorgeous Things. It really does make a difference.
- After being chastised by Benson of TexStyles, I now clip all my threads as I sew.
- I installed my first ever invisible zip this August, then installed 4 more.
Inaugural zip; they got better after this one
- I sewed my first ever welt pockets in June, then didn't sew them again.
- I tried two new-to-me sewing pattern brands, Kwik Sew and StyleArc.
KwikSew 3740. I will make this again soon! Maybe even as-soon-as-tmw soon!
What about 2012 (and beyond)?
I want to learn how to blind hem on my machine; I want to make a real pair of pants; I want to get my serger in working order and use it. I will attend PR weekend in May in NYC. I want to buy a real dressform.
To all my blog and pattern review readers: A huge thank you for all of your comments and suggestions this year, and all your support about my various health issues (which are all manageable lately, may that trend continue, knock on wood!)
Wishing you a healthy and happy new year full of sewing and all of your favorite things!!!