Monday, 31 December 2018

My year in patterns

This is what my sewing year looks like in line drawings. The bare bones of what I made.

It's interesting for me to look back on this very last day of the year as what I made is always a reflection of what my year looked like. I sew what I wear and I wear what I sew.
So if I made sleeveless tops that's a sign of a warm summer, or a holiday in southern Europe (actually both, in 2018) No new evening wear or party dresses means there were few formal or festive events this year. No coats, as my winter coats were still in good shape and I barely wore coats during summer.

In 2018 I made twenty garments. Nineteen for me, one for mr Foxgloves.
Let's take a closer look. I won't bore you with a ton of links but if you want to go to the original blogpost you'll find the links on the top of this page under 'Sewn'.

1) a pink Knipmode sweater (KM1801-25) with a lovely neckline. It's soft, warm and comfortable and I wear it a lot.
2) The black midi skirt Knipmode KM1711-08) is not worn that often, but it's a timeless classic and good to know it's there I want something dressy.
3) A pair of black Cashmerette Ames Jeans. It initially had wrinkles at the back of the leg, an issue that was fixed by taking the legs apart (imagine ripping serged-stitched-topstitched seams, all black on black), reducing the length of the back leg above the knee and adding the same amount at the hem. Worked incredibly well, worn very often.
4) Simplicity 1563. Very happy with the decision to line this robe with satin. Feels luxurious and I've worn it every morning, except during heatwaves. By far the most worn garment of 2018!

5) McCalls 6436, a button down shirt in viscose. No gaping at the bust, by far the best fitting shirt I've owned in the last decade. Note to self: make a plain version next year.
6/7) Two Helen's Closet Blackwood cardigans. Wardrobe staples.
8) A Cashmerette Concord Tshirt hack. V neck in the front and back with ties. An absolute summer favourite. The only downside: the rayon knit is growing and the shirt got longer and longer with each wear. I need to take up the hem when it comes out of winter storage.
9/10) Two knit tops from Ottobre 2/2014. The tops are lined, which gives them a very clean finish. Both tops are mostly worn under jackets or with a cardigan, perfect layering pieces. If I make them again I will alter the armholes and go down a size.

11) Vogue 8379. A wrap dress in a loud floral print. Definitely a winner!
12) A breezy blouse, Knipmode KM1708-24. Can't wait for the first sunshine to wear this again.
13/14 Two Helen's Closet Blackwood cardigans. The pink version is the least succesfull of the four I have made this year. The cotton jersey has barely enough stretch for the pattern. The emerald version is the best of the lot. Lovely colour that goes with everything and a super leightweight drapey rayon.
15) Fail! Nice Knipmode pattern, peasant blouse KM1803-103, beautiful broderie Anglaise in the most perfect royal blue. Just not a winning match between pattern and fabric.

16/17) Two renditions of the Cashmerette Concord T-shirt. A nightgown, finished with lingerie elastics. A refashioned blue and white tee with elbow length sleeves. Both in heavy rotation.
18) A navy Deer and Doe Plantain shirt. Very basic, very useful around the house.
19) Menswear! A Knipmode bomber jacket (KM1704-23). Mr F likes it, but due to my unseasonal finishing of this light summer jacket in late autumn it did not get much wear so far.
20) A peplum top, Knipmode KM1803-12. Nice pattern, lovely print but sadly the fabric is not wearing well as it is prone to snagging and pilling.

All in all a rather succesfull year with one fail out of 20 garments, and two cases of disappointing fabric. All garments but one (the failed peasant blouse) have been worn often or very often or probably will be worn often in the right season. In addition to the 19 items I've sewn for myself I only bought one pair of RTW jeans.

To keep my wardrobe balanced it's good to look at what I did NOT sew this year. I already mentioned the lack of coats, also no jackets for me. Next year I need a new winter coat and I can certainly use a few jackets. With just a single dress and a single skirt sewn in 2018 I'm looking forward to sewing more skirts and dresses next year! 

It's only a few years ago that I started sewing with knit fabrics on a regular basis. Things have changed, his year the knits are winning.

And finally some statistics for the patterns I've used:

O dear, that's not adding up to 20! Knipmode should be 6, but it's New Year's Eve and the traditional 'oliebollen' are waiting for me so this will have to do.

Thank you all for following along and for your support, helpful tips and wonderful comments.
Being part of this worldwide sewing community has truly broadened my horizon!

Happy New Year!


  1. Happy New Year! I've enjoyed following your blog and seeing what you make. I love how colourful your garments are.

    Wow - unpicking the jeans would have been a horrible job, but I'm glad you got the results you wanted.

    1. Thank you! One of the things I like best about sewing is that you can select any colour. No sesonal or fashionable limitations!

  2. Happy New Year, Marianne.
    You mean you managed to fix the jeans after they were made? Did you have to add a false hem at the bottom? I cant quite envision what you did - I can certainly see how it would be done on the actual pattern (I think).

    1. Thank you! Yes, I adjusted the jeans after they were made. I always use temporary hems until the jeans have been washed a few more times. I've experienced shrinking in denim despite prewashing and there's little I hate more than too short pants. So there was a 8 cm hem allowance which gave me plenty to work with! I'll see if I can find the pictures and write a short blogpost about this fix.

  3. Happy New Year - I love to see what you make and you choose beautiful colors and fabrics.

    1. Thank you Beth! Likewise, I can't wait to see your next projects. Happy New Year!

  4. I love this “retrospective” of your sewing year! We are a busy bunch, aren’t we!? Looking forward to seeing more of your sewing in 2019, and especially if it includes a coat! Happy New Year, Marianne!

    1. Thanks, Karen. I presume you're planning more coats and jackets too? Cheers to a very happy year with lots of sewing time!

  5. Gelukkig nieuwjaar! Looking forward seeing your creations in 2019.
    Lovely to see all the garments in one post. Great achievement and lots and lots of great garments!

  6. Fun idea to see your year of sewing in line drawing form. Looks like 2018 was a very successful sewing year for you, look forward to seeing what 2019 brings!