One of the goals that Mom (Michelle) and I have set for the year ahead is to each make an effort to craft an intentional and well rounded wardrobe. The first step we decided to take together, was to look back at some of last year's makes and what we learned in the process.
We each chose our top 9 projects, here are mine, and all the nitty gritty details.
1. This is a pattern I drafted based on the concept of a top or dress with a front bib style yoke that has princess seam style shaping built into the side seams of the yoke. I have a fuller bust and thought it would be a nice place to add shaping without also having to add darts. I think it worked well, the sides of the yoke are fairly straight and the bodice front sides that attach there look like a less curved version of princess seam bodice side panels. It feels comfortable on, and was an easy sew. I did a faced curved hemline, which I'd like to change next time I make this, because the skirt is a little too full to notice the hem detail. So far I have worn this dress a bunch, and it was my Christmas dinner dress this Winter. Oh, and the fabric is my Thistle print rayon from my latest Cotton + Steel collection, Flower Shop.
2. This poncho/wrap is one of my favorite makes ever! It is SO versatile and great for travel or for layering. There are many months of the year here in Nashville that require layering, but not necessarily a coat, and this suits that task perfectly. It is made from one cut of wool and looks like this when unfolded. I bought about a yard and a half to make this and it took MAYBE an hour.
3. This ikat cotton is a medium weight designer end I bought at one of my local shops here in Nashville. I thought it might be fun to make a Pearl top, and this shirt was the originator of this blog post where we shared how to make a Pearl top with cuffed sleeves, and how to draft a neck facing. I love this shirt, it almost feels like a woven sweatshirt because the fabric has a little weight to it, but because the ikat is a slightly looser weave, it is not stiff. I have two more of these cut out in double gauze for summer!
4. I love to knit, it is my go to relaxation activity! This winter I was inspired to knit a cardigan in colors inspired by Shelley Duvall's wardrobe in the Shining. The project details are on my Ravelry and this may be the fastest project I have ever knit, ever. I think the combination of fingering weight yarn, winter keeping us indoors a lot, and motivation fueled my speed with this sweater. It also required steeking which is terrifying but also really fun when it's over. I highly recommend this pattern and I'll probably make another one someday.
5. This Summer Devon Iott and Sarah Watts came to our studio for a weekend visit and mini-sewing retreat. We sewed tons of stuff all weekend and this was one of my projects. The pattern is the Adventure Tank from Fancy Tiger Crafts. I sewed a size large and modified the neckline just a little bit by dropping it in the front. I based this change on a tank from madewell that I really like. I definitely plan to make this again, it was really fast and easy!
6. On the same sewing weekend I also made these shorts using one of my fabrics from Print Shop for the main fabric, and some chambray from Robert Kaufman for the bias trim. I used the City Gym Shorts pattern from Purl Soho. They are perfect for summer and are surprisingly quick to sew even with the fussy bias topstitching! I added pockets to mine by slashing the front pattern piece, and drafting a pocket front and bag. I also used a little more binding to finish the pocket opening edge.
7. I love making special dresses that aren't everyday items, but I think I love making everyday clothing even more. It is gratifying to get so much wear out of a garment, and this sweatshirt is so cozy (which is pretty much my mantra in life, the Taurus that I am.) This is the Linden Sweatshirt from Grainline Studio. I used some cotton sweatshirt fleece that was a J. Crew designer end, purchased at a local shop. The fleece doesn't have as much stretch as the pattern really needs so I had to make the bands a little larger than they are drafted, and I made a mistake when attaching the neck band so the neckline is a scant 1/4" more open than the pattern, but other than that everything else is as the pattern is drafted. I made a size 10.
8. This dress is my favorite make this year! I had been wanting to make this vintage Kenzo pattern for years, and finally the right fabric combination occurred with my new rayon print, Thistle, from my Flower Shop collection. The pattern has a raglan cut, which I always love, wide cuffed sleeves, patch pockets, and a button placket with slight gathers into a bias finished neckline. This tunic style dress is so comfortable and easy to fit. I used some big black buttons that have a 60's look for the placket.
9. I first saw this tunic over on Sallieoh and was intrigued by the cut and shape. I also, like many of us, have an obsession with owning as many kaftan like garments as possible, and this felt like a perfect fit. The pattern is Burda dress 122, available via PDF on the Burdastyle website. I made a few tweaks for this first, wearable muslin and I'm glad I did! The body of the dress is so full in the pattern, I took out about 3" at the CB and 2" at the CF. Next time I make it, I'll probably lower the side slits of the hemline. The combination of the fullness and how high the openings come up makes for a garment that is hard to wear other than over jeans, or as a swim cover up. That being said, I do love this dress and will probably make it again at some point. This fabric is a rayon challis designer end, and I have no idea where I bought it, let's just say it was marinating in my stash for a while!
Favorite thing I made in 2016: Kenzo vintage pattern 3027.
Other favorite makes of 2016: I'm not sure how I managed to have no photos of the five jumpsuits I made this year, but I'd say all of them are awesome and comfortable and I can't wait until it is warm enough to wear them again!
Something new I learned in 2016: To be more deliberate and intentional with the garments I sew and add to my wardrobe.
Describe your 2016 style: Casual, comfortable, prints, dark colors, the perfect buttons, vintage style and vintage color schemes.
Sewing resolutions for 2017: I am inspired to go through a wardrobe building process of assessing my pieces and really getting the most out of fewer items. I'd like to spend more time on fewer key garments that have finer details. I used to do so much complicated sewing when I was freelancing and I miss the gratification of finishing something that is a little more challenging. I'd also like to make more tops, I tend to make dresses and I wear jeans most of the time, so I'd like to make some tops to wear with jeans!