Friday, 22 January 2016

Happy New Year!.. and a brief/not so brief round-up.

Happy New Year to everyone! Plans for taking part in Gillian's Top Five posts have fallen by the wayside, although I have really enjoyed reading everyone else's lists.  I couldn't resist a quick round-up though so here goes.

2015 was a more productive sewing year than I expected really.  There was a lot of children's clothing sewn this year, for Harris and for others. Not all of this made it to the blog, something I'd like to remedy this year as it's a good way to keep a record of what I've made, especially now my memory seems to be worse than ever! My most used patterns were definitely the See Kate Sew Recess Raglan,  made here, here and here, and the Oliver + S sunny day shorts, made here.

So, what about the adult sewing? Well there were only a few unsuccessful makes, and an unexpected hit. Without a doubt my most used, and well-loved pattern is the Plantain tee from Deer & Doe. I've made 5 versions so far and have no plans of stopping anytime soon. My first three definitely got me hooked.  The red dress version, which I thought was such a hit, turned out to be a bit sheer for my comfort levels so has now been shortened to a top.  The tester dress, in a cheap turquoise fabric, has turned out to be a real hit. I wear this at least once a week. It just goes so well with tights and boots, is really comfy, and doesn't need ironing - what more could you want in a winter dress!

I've made 3 out of 6 of the items on my Autumn/winter sewing plans which I think is a pretty good success rate! So first up, let's talk about the 2 knit items I've made so far - Plantains #4 and #5.

At the Science Musem, wearing my Plantain dress, and unintentional colour co-ordinating with my son!

Has anyone else had the problem of twin-needle hems on knitted garments snapping? I have had quite a few things where the stitches have come loose or snapped and it's a bit frustrating.  Instagram is brilliant for asking for help though and Portia came to my rescue, suggesting using wooly nylon thread in the bobbin to help the stitches stretch.  When my wooly nylon thread arrived I got started on my lovely John Kaldor print jersey dress (fabric from The Man Outside Sainsbury's). I sewed this up the same as my previous two plantain dressed, though now I wish I'd made the sleeves slightly longer (after seeing Beth's gorgeous Mesa dresses). The fabric was so nice to sew with and the neckband looks really neat as a result.  I know this isn't a great photo to see the dress and I do aim to try and improve my blog photos this year! And the wooly nylon thread? Well I'm pleased to say it worked a treat. I wear this dress at least once a week, sometime more if I can get away with it, and the hem stitches are all still in place.

Deep pink plantain neckline detail

Deer & Doe plantain t-shirt

I made another pink t-shirt as my first one (my first make of 2015) had to be consigned to the textile recycling bin due to bobbly fabric and a hole. Nothing much to say about this, I used the wooly nylon thread in the bobbin again for hemming, it only has 3/4 length sleeves as that's all the fabric I had, and this will get lots of wear too - now that I finally got matching thread to sew the hem.  Walthamstow may be great for fabric but there's nowhere to buy  good quality thread - until that is, I discovered the Hobbycraft nearby.  No more procrastination because I don't have the right coloured thread!

I've got a bright pink Brumby skirt all finished up and ready to wear. There was a LOT of unpicking with this make but it's all been worth it as it looks great. I'll get some photos soon.  Next up? The navy Maya top from my A/W sewing plans and a second Brumby skirt.

Wow, well that wasn't exactly the quick post I planned! I hope I haven't bored you all. What are you planning for 2016? Or do you prefer not to have a sewing plan? I'd love to take part in the Vintage Pledge in 2016 and Me Made May but first up, Kids Clothes Week next month - yay!