2017 was a busy year in my creative life, especially for sewing. I joined two year-long challenges – more on those below – and took part in Me Made May, #sewphotohop and #bpsewvember. Most wonderfully, I have been blessed with a growing circle of creative friends, near and far, who have brought challenge, companionship and inspiration into my daily life.
September was my busiest month, visiting the Great British Sewing Bee Live and teaching at Yarndale. I spent much longer than before at the Knitting and Stitching Show in November, where I had the privilege of supporting Laura from Sew Different.
Pattern testing has been one of the great creative joys of the last year. I find new challenges with each task and love to see how each designer uses her own particular skills and gifts to bring new patterns to the market.
From last year’s Sew My Style challenge, I chose to make most of the 12 garments, namely the Toaster Sweaters, Saunio Cardigan, Virginia Leggings, Bridgetown Dress, Pocket Skirt and Briar Tee (made as a sweatshirt but I can’t find a photo!). I had already made an Anna Dress in late 2016 and did in fact make a dress from the new Named Clothing collection – Gemma – without thinking about the connection, so only missed out three months’ pattern choices.
The 2018 challenge sign up can be found on Jessica Lorraine’s website. I’ve printed and cut the first pattern and am especially looking forward to February and the Rumana Coat (not that I really need another coat, having made four in the last 18 months!!).
Looking back at my my #makenine choices, I only made two of my choices – the Tulip skirt and Moss skirt – plus patterns that are similar to three others, so I am genuinely happy with the outcome. I still intend to make the remaining six this year.
This year my choice for makenine is made up of patterns that are already in my collection. It is designed to help build both my self-sewn wardrobe and my skill set. As far as possible, I’ll also use fabrics from my library as far as possible, as it’s quite extensive! Having made a lot of dresses in 2017, it’s definitely time to create some more practical, everyday clothes.
If you’re looking for inspiration, #2018makenine is a good place to start. Did you know that you can now follow hashtags on Instagram?
Trousers/ Pants: Melody by Seamwork – stretch cotton sateen or twill
Jacket: Tamarack (Grainline Studios) – cupro from Rainbow Fabrics Kilburn
Children’s/ Teens’ Tunic/hoodie: Jesse (Makerist)
Top: Back is Back (Vanessa Pouzet, a bargain at EUR3,40 and stunning!) – silk and lace
The #burdachallenge2018 is my final annual challenge for this year, set by lovely Hila of Saturday Night Stitch. I have a few copies in Dutch from the years I spent in Belgium, plus some more recent English language editions, so will set aside some planning and tracing time soon, perhaps with local sewing friends as a sewciable activity.
I’m hoping for a more thoughtful crafting year, with less hurrying and more joy found in the process of making. What are you looking forward to?