Tabatha’s Top 5s of 2012
Here I am at the last minute joining the many other sewing bloggers who have been compiling their ‘Top 5s’ (a great idea of Gillian’s from Crafting a Rainbow). I’ve really enjoyed reading everyone’s lists, and I wanted to get in on the action as I plan a more serious commitment to sewing in 2013. Prior to reading these lists I was a bit unsure about bothering with a 2012 sewing review post because I had felt as though the year had been a complete washout sewing-wise: I’ve been busy in other aspects of my life instead. We bought a house, redecorated three of the rooms in it, I seriously injured my coccyx and I’ve been pregnant for 9 months out of the 12 – those four things have really impacted my ability to sew and my motivation, too. However, I was pretty pleased when I counted up how much I did get manage to get sewn, and although it does pale into insignificance when I compare it with 2011 (a whopping 58 complete projects!), I’ve done much better than I thought. The total for 2012 is 32 (a set of cot bedding, an apron for a friend, a quilt for my daughter, 2 sets of number softies for friends’ children, 2 skirts for myself, 2 pairs of pyjama bottoms for myself, 3 sets of pyjamas for my daughter, 3 blouses for myself, 4 dresses for my daughter, 4 sets of bunting for friends’ children, and 9 dresses for myself). That’s still averaging slightly over one project per fortnight, which considering the year I had is not bad at all. So without further ado, I’m going to get my negativity out of the way and begin with my…
Top 5 Sewing Fails
5. Colette Peony – There’s nothing strictly wrong with this dress. I made it well, it fits nicely and I love the fabric, but I think it’s the short sleeves I dislike. With this dress I’d prefer longer sleeves (like my first version, which I love), or no sleeves at all. It’ll get worn in the summer, but not much.
4. Sewaholic Pendrell – This is a pattern I’d been dying to make for ages, and I loved it right up until trying it on. And then I just didn’t like it so much. I’m not quite sure why, but it made me feel a bit like a nurse or something. It’s a shame because I really love the bird fabric. However, I will still wear it every now and then because although my preferred garment is a dress, it does go nicely with jeans, and as a Mum I can’t be romping around play centres in dresses.
3. Quilt – When viewed from a distance, or by someone who does not know a thing about sewing, this quilt is not a fail. But man! This has to be the thing I hated making most this year! It all went swimmingly until I started the quilting. Quilting this was a nightmare: I’m just too inexperienced. But I will give quilting another go at some point.
2. Colette Taffy – Chiffon! This wasn’t the first time I had worked with chiffon, but it was the first time I made a chiffon garment from scratch. I’m not quite sure what happened but when I came to sew this up I realised I had cut the front piece about 1.5” shorter than the back! Oops! The blouse is still lovely and I wouldn’t hesitate to make another, but it is a little too short for my liking and I need to make sure I get it right next time.
1. Burda 7798 – Number one outright sewing fail! Having made one of these in 2011 which fits nicely and which I’ve worn a lot, I wanted to add another to the collection, so I went ahead and used the exact same pattern pieces to make this, and it was just too small. The only reason I can think of is that my first version, made in a very light cotton, has stretched to fit, whereas there was zero stretch in this fabric. Complete and utter FAIL.
Top 5 Favourite Creations
5. Butterick B4956 – both versions – I’m cheating here because I’m including two different views of the same pattern. When my daughter wears these I feel an immense sense of pride, and of course she looks gorgeous in them. Most of the garments I make for my daughter are very special to me.
4. New Look 6000 – My second version of this dress has been so practical and comfy for me this year. It’s not terribly exciting, but it’s a flattering shape, and even at 40 weeks pregnant it can accommodate my baby bump (it’s made of interlock jersey) and it makes me feel like I look good.
3. Sewaholic Maternity Skirt – This skirt, which I adapted to make into maternity wear (find out how here), has been the single item of clothing I have worn the most this year. I didn’t make loads of maternity clothing, nor did I buy very much, so since I made it I’ve worn it 2-3 times every week!!! It goes with everything and it has seen me right the way through my pregnancy and it’s still going strong.
2. Colette Truffle – Making this dress was damn hard work and it’s my biggest sewing achievement this year. After having been on a pattern cutting course I put my new knowledge to good use and redrafted this pattern from scratch after a disastrous first toile. It took four toiles to get it right.
1. Colette Licorice – This dress is the perfect dress for me. It combines comfort, practicality, elegance and prettiness. I love the design, love the fabric, love the fit. I’m looking forward to squeezing myself back into it post-pregnancy!
I’m not going to do some of the other ‘Top 5’ lists suggested by Gillian this year, I just want to end by thanking the wider online sewing community for entertaining and inspiring me throughout 2012, be it through blogging or on twitter. There are so many talented sewists out there! And thank you to those of you who read and/or comment on our blog, too. We’ve not been able to produce regular posts throughout the year but we hope for a better 2013 and I’m looking forward to getting my sewing mojo back!
Happy New Year to you all! x