Monday, 18 January 2016

Reflection: 2015

A bit late to be reviewing last year, when we are more than halfway into January, but never mind. I like reading these types of posts, as I always think its interesting to see beyond the initial blog photos. So I'm sharing mine on that basis.

22 makes! 22! I didn't believe it myself, so I created this collage to prove it to myself and to you! Of course I didn't actually sew 22 things, but I created 22 things, which is good enough. Edit: I've realised I actually made more. Not featured here are 2 lots of cushion covers, plus a t-shirt that never got blogged. So, 25 in total?
So what worked? Well, I'm defining success by counting the things I wear all the time. In no particular order:

  Love love love this dress. It's perfect for work, and also worked for Christmas day. It's comfy and elegant at the same time. I wear it all the time.

 Love love love this dress too! Again, it's comfy and elegant and again it's gone from work to nights out to casual weekend wear. I need more so I don't wear this one out.

 OK, I've only worn this twice, but it's not exactly everyday wear. And it makes me feel fabulous when I do wear it. And I made a jumpsuit!!!!

 This hasn't been worn so much recently but that's down to weather and the fact that I don't own a cardigan that goes with it satisfactorily. This top makes me feel really cool and the fabric is lush. It was worn weekly before it got cold.

 My first Linden wasn't a complete success fit-wise, and the fabric has pilled, but I still wear this regularly, especially now the weather is colder again.

 My gold Linden. I love this so much it hurts. It's comfy and casual but makes me feel really cool and "put together". Sadly it's been worn so much that the gold foil has started to wear away. But that's OK because I have enough of the gold fabric left to make another! Just need to get more plain grey mark french terry.
This probably hasn't seen quite as much wear as my other favourites, but I do love it. The fabric and the colour are glorious, and it's very easy to wear. I'm looking forward to spring so I can break it out again.

What didn't work so well?

 I did love this tshirt, but I didn't pre-wash it. What became evident though was that if I had it wouldn't have made much difference as it continued to shrink further with every wash. It went into textile recycling. I must make another though.

 My first trousers, and I was so proud, but sadly the fabric let me down. It bags out hugely when wearing, so by mid morning I have a saggy bum, and they look terrible. I will revisit this pattern though with a better fabric this year.

 I do wear this tee, but only when I have nothing else clean. The shoulder seams bug me and the neckline doesn't sit quite right.

I've worn this once. I like it in the pictures, so I will persevere with it this summer however I think the elastic waist is always going to be a problem.

I like this dress but I don't love it and I'm not wearing it. Maybe that's because I think it looks dorky with a cardigan? Maybe it's because it is a little snug at the hips? Maybe it's the fabric. Again, I'll give it this summer - I might prefer it with bare legs and clogs.

I never blogged this, but it was a Linden in a drapey jersey. The idea was OK, but the execution was pretty terrible. I messed the neck binding up twice, and in unpicking, tore a hole. I also made it too short and so had to add a band to lengthen it (actually, this worked OK. I did a single layer band and left the hem raw). It got quite a bit of wear during MMM15, and it worked well under my Linden sweatshirts, however it got the chop during a cull in the summer. I can make a better black t-shirt than that.

So, what are my plans for 2016? To keep sewing. More specifically, to keep sewing items that I need and want to wear. I don't want to get too specific with my plans as I'd like to keep them fairly fluid. I'm currently making pyjamas for the boys, which are turning out very well. After that I plan to make an Archer shirt dress with some striped viscose that arrived just today! Beyond that? I don't know. At some point this year I'd like to make jeans. I'd also really, really like to finish the coat WIP that I've been harping on about for a couple of years now. More clothes for the boys in my life would be nice too.

Reducing my spend, and therefore my stash is a must. My 2015 goal was to use as much of my stash as I could. I can count 12 posts about items I made from my stash (with the tag: 2015 goals), however I counted stash as anything that hadn't been immediately sewn, so this does include fabric I bought during the year. I did implement a rule whereby I could only buy fabric if I had at least one firm plan (preferably with an alternative or 2) of what I would make with it. But as we all know, that doesn't necessarily mean the item is actually sewn. This year I'd like to work through some of that backlog and the WIPs. If I no longer like the fabric or want to make the pattern, I want to be pretty ruthless and get rid.

To support this, I've decided to track my spending through the year on both fabric and RTW. Nothing fancy, I just plan to record what I've spent, on what and when on Evernote on my phone. I like to think I don't spend much, but writing it down will hopefully make me think twice before parting with cash.

Outside of sewing, we'd like to build an extension to our kitchen this year. We actually have no idea how much this will cost, or how we will fund it, but being cautious with my spending will probably be a habit I'll need to get used to, so may as well start now!

What about you? If you haven't already posted your plans, please share!

Sorry - I haven't linked any of the above garments to the original posts - too tired now. But if you head to my Made By Me page, you will find all the links there. 



  1. Wow what a productive year you have had! It's great to see these summary posts. Thank you!

  2. 2015 was a great year for you. Writing down how much you spend is a great idea. I always think I'm frugal with my hobby but I bet I'm not. May keep a notebook too!

  3. Really love your purple dress, no wonder you wear it a lot. My spotty trousers are also about to be chucked, the fabric has shed so much dye they now look terrible.

  4. You've had such a productive year, and so many lovely makes! It is quite useful doing this kind of review isn't it?! Hopefully it helps focus sewing for the year ahead! I'm looking forward to seeing your makes in 2016.

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