Thursday, 1 January 2015

2014 - A Year in Sewing

Happy New Year! I'm rather pleased with my sewing output for 2014, there were a few stumbling blocks along the way (more on that later…), but by and large it was a great sewing year. My favourite make of the year has got to be my Dotted Chambray Bow Blouse.


You all know I love bow blouses, I love Mrs Slocombe, I love polka dots and I love chambray, so the amalgamation of all these things almost finished me off. It's not just my favourite make of the year, it's my favourite make OF ALL TIME! I always receive compliments when I wear it too, the bow seems to be particularly impressive for some reason! Coming in at a close equal second are two dresses I made in the summer: my Kate Spade-inspired Lemon dress….


and my Anna 6696.


They were both inspired by pictures I found on Pinterest (see here and here) and I feel ridiculously pleased that I was able to use the original inspiration pictures to make dresses that were very individual to me. They both fit really well, and although they're quite different in design, I feel they're a good indicator of my style. Plus the lemon dress is yellow - one of the few rogue pieces to step out of line from my strict red, white and blue colour dictatorship this year! 


The most useful item I sewed this year was my raincoat. I won't lie, it did give me grief during the making of it, but that was all forgotten as soon as I donned my vision in navy blue waterproof loveliness! This year I also discovered the joy of sewing my own basic items of clothing (mostly Bronte T shirts and Mabel skirts). As wonderful and useful as they are, I find them deeply boring to blog about, so if any further versions pop up, I'll just mention them in passing!

As mentioned earlier, I did have a couple of misses this year: despite my best intentions, the Cressida skirt I pattern tested for Jennifer Lauren Vintage just didn't work. My first Afternoon blouse has also been shown the door, purely down to the fact that it doesn't fit. It's a real shame as I love the red shirting fabric I made it from, but there's no getting away from the fact that I cut a size too small. That'll teach me eh! And finally, the darts on my vintage red dress defeated me in the end and it's now languishing, dart-less with side seams ripped open in frustration. Maybe I'll come back to it, if I can ever be arsed. 

I think this year was the year I finally learnt to say no to every single sewing challenge I heard about. It's still a bit of a struggle as my natural inclination is to immediately scream "me too, ME TOO" but life's just too short. I did participate in the Vintage Sewing Pattern Pledge run by Marie at A Stitching Odyssey but deliberately set myself a low target (to sew up three vintage patterns in 2014). The other reason I didn't commit to everything under the sun was because I found myself hosting a sewing challenge of my own - the return of One Week, One Pattern 2014!


Although it was a lot of work, I really did enjoy organising and participating in OWOP and was overwhelmed by how many people joined in and embraced the challenge themselves - thank you so much everyone! I loved giving my beloved 1950's Simplicity pattern its place in the spotlight for a week, if anything, it's made me even fonder of the pattern than I was before!



As for my sewing plans for 2015, I'm really keen to use the skills I learnt during my pattern cutting weekend to create a well fitting bodice. This kind of thing doesn't come naturally to me, but I would like to get my dart positioning right and conquer the bloody things once and for all. With this in mind, I've got plans to make a simple, collarless coat in the early part of the year. I do have a pattern in mind but I may have a go at self drafting (ahem!) I think it will probably end up as a combination of the two. Other than that I'm going to just sew where the mood takes me,  Exciting!

My favourite picture of the year: with Rachel and Winnie at Goldhawk Road

I've had so much pleasure from sewing this year and met up with some amazingly talented and generous people (both old and new). All I want for next year is more of the same! Thank you again for your support and friendship this year and Happy Sewing, wherever you are! x 






50 comments:

  1. Happy New Year! I've loved following along with all your great sewing adventures and looking forward to seeing what's the come!

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    1. Thanks Jenny and the same to you! You've had a great sewing year! x

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  2. What a great review of your year in sewing. I've loved reading your blog and look forward to hearing about what you get up to in 2015. Happy New Year! Catherine x

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  3. Oh, that blouse! The bow is very impressive. I made a terrible version of that pattern in a terrible fabric and I still got multiple compliments every time I wore it! My favorite, though, is the yellow dress. Like, it's one of my favorite things I've seen anyone make ever. Happy new year to you!

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    1. Oh wow, what a lovely compliment, thank you! And yes, that bow blouse pattern just invites compliments, whatever you make it from! x

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  4. That lemon dress!!!!!!! That's my favorite of all your makes, for sure! It's so beautiful! Happy 2015, lady, and much happy making in the New Year!

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    1. Aw thanks Sonja, that lemon dress holds a special place in my heart! Happy 2015 to you too lovely. x

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  5. Happy New Year Jane! You've got some great garments there which really scream 'you'. Looking forward to seeing what you make this year!

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    1. Thanks Fiona and Happy New Year! Yes, they're mostly very 'me' aren't they?! Don't really know what I'll be sewing this year, it's quite nice not having much of a plan! x

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  6. Happy new year to you! Your bow blouse is definitely a winner, the bow is very impressive, a great feat of fabric engineering! Thanks for hosting owop too!

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    1. My pleasure Helen! And thank you, I'm quite impressed by my bow too! x

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  7. Happy New Year! Great round-up, and I am with you about the saying no - it's hard but sometimes necessary :)

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    1. Happy New. Year Alice! You're absolutely right, it's definitely hard to say no but much easier on the stress levels! x

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  8. Happy New Year. I loved one week one pattern... a return please.Jo x

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    1. Thanks, glad you enjoyed it! I may run it again, depends how brave I'm feeling! x

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  9. Its been great reading about your sewing adventures Jane and thanks for hosting OWOP!

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    1. Thanks Caroline, it was a pleasure! x

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  10. What a good year indeed! I must have absorbed that denim dress off Pinterest by osmosis as I've almost finished something similar! Look forward to your next year of mostly red, white and blue (my fave combo!).

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    1. Ooh looking forward to sewing your denim/chambray dress, The original one is gorgeous isn't it?! And hoorah for red, white and blue! x

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  11. Quality! I love the fruit print dress: I found some watermelon fabric in fabricland :)

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    1. Yay! Hoorah for watermelon fabric! x

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  12. I love the yellow dress too. It suits you so well.

    'Lemon' reminds me of the lines from the Australian movie 'The Dish' about transmitting the moon landing in 1969. In a scene with a well-meaning small town Mayor and his socially helpful wife, Maisie, she's deciding what to wear to meet the US Ambassador. Not totally accurate but this is the gist:
    M: Which one, Bob, the lemon or the aqua.
    B: Er, Yellow.
    M: Not yellow, Bob, lemon.
    (At the meeting with the Ambassador, Bob gets flustered, forgets to introduce his wife at all and then says to a bemused visitor:)
    B: Oh, yes, this is my wife, Maisie. She's the lemon.

    Well, that was a long way for a short laugh.
    Wishing you a very happy 2015 with good projects ahead.

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    1. Haha, a good laugh though! Happy New Year! x

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  13. Have loved following your blog this year. Thanks for all the inspiration. That Lemon dress is my favourite too :-)

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    1. Thanks Teresa, looking forward to seeing what you make in 2015 too! x

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  14. I love your lemon dress! I spent a great deal of time looking for the perfect lemon print while travelling this summer but didn't find one. Your dress is one of my all time favorites! Great line up of makes, looking forward to another year following you!

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    1. Aw thank you! I didn't think the lemon fabric was the one initially but it turned out to be in the end, I love it! x

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  15. Happy New Year Jane! You've had a fabulous year and I've enjoyed catching up with you...can't wait to see what 2015 has in store ;o)

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    1. Happy New Year to you too lovely! Can't wait to see what you make in 2015 Marie! x

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  16. You glow in the lemon dress! I enjoy your blog and hope you keep on.

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  17. That chambray top is so beautiful! I love reading your blog hope you continue into 2015
    X

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    1. Thanks Frankie, I hope so too! x

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  18. Happy New Year!! I love all your makes and always find inspiration from your blog (still loving my shoes!!). I'm looking forward to seeing what 2015 brings you! xx

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    1. Aw you too Jenna. Sooooo pleased you still love your shoes! x

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  19. Happy New Year, Jane! I've loved following what you've been making this year. Everything you make is always fun and scream "you". I can't wait to see what you get up to in 2015. Wishing you the best!!

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    1. Same to you Tasha, I've loved following your blog this year - your sewing is so inspiring! Happy New Year! x

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  20. What a great sewing year you had! You lemon dress is definitely a hit. May the creative juice flow into 2015.

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    1. Aw thank you Helene, I hope the creative juices flow this year too! x

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  21. Happy New Year! You had a lot of great makes. Look forward to seeing what 2015 brings!

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    1. Thanks so much, Happy New year to you too! x

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  22. What a gorgeous selection of makes - your whole wardrobe seems so well curated. You've really nailed what works for you. I've learned lots from following your blog this past year - thanks for the inspiration & happy new year!

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    1. Oh that's so lovely to hear Rachel, thank you!

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  23. Happy New Year! Looking forward to seeing what you come up with in 2015 x

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  24. Happy New Year my lovely! I'm looking forward to 2015, and hopefully to our big faces being in the same place a few times too! x

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  25. Happy New Year in 2015 - look forward to what's coming next with every blog. You are so gifted and it looks like you have such fun with your sewing buddies - wonderful adventures! Thanks so very much for that great review. All the best,

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  26. P.S. In about 20 minutes, I will be watching The Great British Baking Show after watching the premier of new season of Downton Abbey last night - loving it - I live in America so have to catch PBS much later!!!

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