Friday, 4 January 2019

2019 - my year of making things on a whim

The above photos shows almost the complete (wearable) output of my 2018 garment sewing efforts. I am not sure what happened to all my sewing ambitions that I noted down on this blog in January last year.... I could blame work, which took over my life, but I am good with time management and it is only one of several potential explanations. Developing new skills is more difficult when time is limited and the tried and tested skills come to the fore. Having said that, I can only really label 'making jeans' as a new skill. Ah well, best to move forward, after looking at my 2018 ambitions in more detail.

Make a vintage coat with a Peter Pan collar. I have a vintage pattern but need to either loose weight or grade the largest size up. Either is challenging but I should probably have a go at both. In any case, the coat is going to be bright yellow.
I have neither lost weight, nor was I keen enough to grade the pattern up to my size. On the positive side, I have not gained weight, which surely must be applauded. 

Make a warm cape. This I imagine will be particularly useful for cosying up while camping. You may call it a fitted blanket. It needn't be a sophisticated cape, just something plain and simple. I have the Seamwork Camden in mind but I also like the Sew Over It Chic cape 
I have not made a cape but I have decided which of the two I fancy more (the latter). Considering my inability to make decisions of minor consequence, I think this is not an insignificant achievement. 

Make an attempt at sewing jeans. Cashmerette have released a pattern that caters for my size and shape, the Ames jeans and I think I might have a go and make a wearable toile. The pattern is for straight legs. I prefer boot cut jeans but I imagine it is easier to start off with a pattern that fits on the hips and adapt the legs. I am not sure if it is worth the effort, I buy my jeans at GAP and they usually fit well. 
I continue to buy my jeans, always in the sale.  I have a high turnover because I almost exclusively wear jeans. Most pairs are beyond repair after four months and I don't think it is worth my effort to make my own. I always mend the pairs I have (they wear out on the seat) but there is only so much mending a single pair can take. I don't know anyone else who wears out their jeans so quickly!

Make a shirt dress. I have pattern and the fabric, too. I just never got around to making it in 2017. There are two patterns I am considering for the shirt dress, both by Cashmerette. The Harrison shirt dress appeals to me because of its double princess seams. The Lenox shirt dress is also nice but I have a feeling it might be less flattering for my shape. 
Oops, I used the fabric to back Alistair's quilt.... maybe next summer!

Make a skirt. Any skirt will do. I might make a denim skirt to practice sewing with denim. I seem to own the Cressida skirt pattern, which fits the brief. It is a bit flared but not full circle, which should make it practical enough to cycle with. Other contenders are the Colette Ginger skirt and the Colette Beignet skirt.
I bought a button down jeans skirt, on a whim when I went clothes shopping with Annie. Thereafter, I lost interest in making one. I don't wear skirts often and one seems plenty.

Sew a cardigan. I have only ever knitted cardigans but it is taking forever. I have the Seamwork Oslo cardigan in mind.
I nearly finished knitting a cardigan instead. Just a sleeve and a bit to go. It is taking forever. I also knitted a sleeved shrug, which I loved wearing during the summer months. It doubles as a scarf during the winter months.

Develop my bra sewing skills.
I didn't need any new bras and didn't want to wast my bra fabric and hardware just for the sake of making something.  

If all fails, I can always make more t-shirts.
I made five t-shirts. My favourite this year was a white and orange striped one with a deep neckline back and front. It is the swing top version of the Fairlith by Blank Slate patterns. My second favourite one is my annual take of the Sailor top, which I have not photographed.

My comfort sewing will be another quilt. It is James' turn to choose fabrics and a pattern. I want to make a quilt with circles to stretch my skills. 
I made three quilts. You can find James' quilt here and Alistair's quilt here. I made a log cabin quilt  for James and a circle quilt for Alistair. The circles didn't stretch my sewing skills as much as I thought they might but it was a fun project. I have yet to show you my own quilt, a completely hand stitched masterpiece.

I made a dress, which was a complete fail and it remains buried in the pile of shame, to be revisited at some point in the future. It is a mystery actually because I used the same pattern previously with success. I spent quite some time on perfecting the fit of the bodice before making the first version.... the bodice of the second dress had a worse fit than even the first toile! I can only imagine that I have muddled up pattern pieces. I could cut the bodice off and use the fabric to make a waistband for the skirt, which fits just fine. Some day. Maybe.

I have no particular plans for sewing this year. I am still keen to sew a coat but I may make a parka instead. I was going to make this for early autumn but the slightly unusual zip took almost two months to arrive (thank you DHL) and when it finally arrived (in duplicate) I didn't fancy getting started any longer.

I'll just bumble along until something takes my fancy and get completely absorbed in the process.

What about your creative ideas for 2019? Do you have any plans, ambitions and dreams that you would like to make a reality? Do share!

Wishing you a good day! Christina xx


  1. I’m looking forward to seeing all your lovely makes. Maybe this will be the year that I get busy on my sewing machine again. B x

  2. Good luck with your makes for 2019! The T-shirts you made last year were great.

  3. I did a make 9 list for sewing and knitting and it all went pear shaped. I do like the idea of a cape, love the Sew Over It one but hate PDF patterns. Maybe later this year I will be able to face it.

  4. This did make me laugh and I wonder if I might be writing a similar post this time next year given my ambitions for finishing off so many projects this year. Whatever you end up making I look forward to seeing it and I think the fact you made three quilts in 2018 is amazing!

  5. That's a pretty impressive amount of making, despite not getting to some of the things you wanted to do. Three quilts! My making has very much taken a back seat to my writing at the moment, both fiction and in particular non-fiction, which I'm doing in almost every spare minute. I always have a little knitting on the go though and I add a few rows late at night when I'm winding down. I'm wishing you a happy and productive 2019. CJ xx

  6. Oh, well done on all the crafting and good luck with your 2019 list. Looking forward to seeing what you make as the year unfolds.

  7. You are very talented Christina. Those t-shirts are beautiful. I can make a pattern and sew a simple dress or a skirt, but I find it very difficult to sew t-shirt material even when I mend them.
    Good luck with all your sewing goals!

  8. I was impressed all year with your seamstress skills.. amazing to see the whole list of them.. you should be very proud. I wish for you another grand year.

    ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

  9. I have toiled with the idea of sewing my own jeans as I always wear them and the only ones in the shops right now have 'trendy' rips in them which I don't want. Unfortunately my I haven't sewn regularly since we had to move my craft stuff to the lounge room so Rachel could have her own bedroom. One day! Good luck with your sewing in 2019. xx Susan

  10. Sadly, I have no sewing talents at all, so yours are admirable, Christina. I do, however, enjoy cooking.


Thank you for visiting and leaving a comment, I love to hear from you, I really do. I sometimes reply by email but I am not all that reliable... Christina xx