Thursday, January 3

2018 Sewing - a year in review

Contrary to my goal this year of slowing down, I sewed a tonnnnn of things this year. And while many would be stoked about that, I'm a little bit sad. I mean not really, because I love them and really made things that work for me. But I like keeping goals, too...

I did manage to keep track of everything I sewed this year; how many yards I sewed, how many yards I bought, how many patterns I bought and how many of those I have sewn since buying. Because tracking keeps me aware and should hypothetically help keep myself in check. Especially as I wanted to sew my stash this year and buy less.  I'll review the progress of all my goals below, but I can say my stash has shrunk a lot. Like a lot a lot. Partly because I just admitted to myself which fabric purchases were duds and aren't my style and I donated them. I donated loads of scraps and full yardage to a shelter down town that teaches refugee women to sew and I feel great about that.

So since this is a review of my sewing for the year, I'll review my goals, my make nine, what I've sewn, who I've sewn for, patterns I've bought, and how I'm feeling about the year.

So here we go - lets start with my Make Nine from last year.

Make Nine 2018

Here is the make nine I created last January:

The make nine has kind of a bad rap this year. Its seems like everyone was exited to jump on board last year but then they didn't succeed at making very many of them so now no one wants to commit to one. Well the make nine works for me because I'm not really distracted by all the new shiny patterns. I know what I like and what works on my body and I pretty much stick to it. So committing to 9 garments at the beginning of the year was easy. I put a lot of thought into creating my make 9 - what patterns I had, what fabric I had, what I wanted to wear and what I needed. And that meant that I succeeded and made all of these! In fact I made all of them by May haha. (I think if I want a challenge I probably need to make a 2019 make 19!)

 Finished Make Nine

The only thing I swapped out was the Sew Over it Alex shirt because I realized it didn't have a collar stand and I wanted a button up shirt with a real collar. So I made the Kalle Shirt instead and I LOVE it. I made 2 and have plans for me. Then, because I loved the shape of that shirt so much I also made the melilot, another dolman button up but with a much slimmer silhouette and am digging it too. I see more of those in my future as well.

I made the knee length shorts version of the Chi-Town Chinos and they also became a quick favorite. In fact, I made two  pairs and wore them all Summer. I also made two Sarah Shirts and two of Mcalls 7380. I think two is a trend for me. I also have more pairs of Morgan jeans planned for this year.

Ok now lets move onto a review of 2018 Goals

1. Sew less. Meaning, slow down and don't sew so many items because I don't need a lot more. This did not happen. Granted, I made much nicer, quality pieces and my old ones have pretty much all been donated, rehomed, or turned into something else.

2. Reduce. Sew up the patterns I haven't ever made and use up my stash. To do this I tried to buy fewer patterns and wait until I'm ready to make a project to buy the pattern. Also I tried to sew twice as many yards as I bought. And I did this! I'm super happy about it. I still probably bought too much, but since I sewed a lot it all worked out. I also did sew up quite a few patterns I hadn't made but owned for years. In a few cases this backfired as they weren't my style anymore, but in some it turned out to be a big win! (Side note - after writing this post I bought 10 yards of fabric - during Boxing Day or end of year sales. But since none of it has arrived and its January...I'm counting that as fabric for this year. That's a cop out I know, but...I'm taking it anyway.)

3. Be patient. Take time to make the right adjustments so that garments turn out better and fit great so that I love them when they're done. This I did, too! I feel really happy with the garments in my closet. They fit so much better and I love wearing them. Im very grateful I took the time to learn the adjustments I need and then actually take the time to do them. And a note on that, you don't need fancy fitting books or to take a class to figure this out. I highly recommend this youtube channel, where I learned all the adjustments I make. Also a lot of patterns, like jeans patterns, come with fitting guides and blog posts to walk you through issues you may be having. You don't need to invest a bunch of time and money to figuring out fitting. Ok so you need to invest some time...but that's it.

Sewing Item Recap

Alright we're moving right along to what I sewed, how much I sewed, who I sewed for, and what patterns I bought, so here you go. Skip this if you don't want a lottttt of info thrown at you...

I have made 140 items (according to list on my phone) that break down to the following categories:

(PS the math isn't even close to adding up with this, but it was a lot of data that I figured you guys won't care too much about so a rough estimate is good enough for me. )

For Husband: 2 items
Cardigans: 2

For my Kids: 33 items
Underwear: 2
Swimsuits: 3
Knit Tops (tees, pajama tops, sweaters, sweatshirts): 8
Dresses/skirts/pinafores: 10
Knit Bottoms (Pajama bottoms/Leggings/Sweatpants/Shorts): 10

For Me: 70
Swimwear: 1
Jeans/shorts: 3
Leggings: 2
Cardigans: 3
Joggers and other pants: 4
Skirts: 6
Sweatshirts/hoodies/sweaters: 8
Jackets/Coats/Outerwear: 6
Tees/gym tanks: 10
Dresses/pinafores: 12
Woven Tops: 17

For Gifts: 20 items
Parents/siblings: 3
Neice/Nephew birthday gifts: 7
Baby Gifts: 10


I bought 88 yards of fabric (yikes) and sewed 177 yards of fabric. I have kept it at a 2:1 ratio of sewn yardage to bought yardage all year and I'm so proud of that. And I'm happy because the fabric in my stash is stuff I love. I have waisted a lot of money in the past buying fabric I later learned I didn't like. So now the fabric I do have is fabric worth owning, sewing, and wearing and that makes me feel good. Its also almost all solid colors which I'm totally down with and different from years past.

Favorite fabrics to wear and sew:
tencel twill
rayon twill
good quality rayon challis
linen rayon blends
heavier weight cotton denims (about 12 oz)
bamboo cotton French terry

Favorite places to buy fabric:
Raspberry Creek Fabrics
Blackbird Fabrics
Fabric dot com
Mood Fabrics
Threadbare Fabrics - for denim and jeans kits

(Those are my main ones, I occasionally check out these other places but rarely buy from them)

D&H Fabrics - new shop- I'll probably buy more from here in the future
Stylemaker Fabric
Imagine Gnats
LA Finch Fabrics

I bought 18 patterns this year and have already sewn up 12 of them (and have 2 more cut out and ready to sew). Also I bought 6 of them since black Friday... I was doing really good till then. I have been trying to not buy a pattern until I'm ready to sew it, but if it was a pattern I've been eyeing for years but can't make right now because of the bump, I went ahead and bought it. And I'm excited about sewing them up in the new year! (Only one of them I regret buying, and its a jean shorts pattern that I realized I should have skipped and just modified a jeans pattern I already have and fits me. Oh well. Maybe I'll still try it. We shall see.)

The patterns I bought were:
Newcastle Cardigan - Thread Theory - sewn twice
Ginger Jean Flares  - Closet Case
Walker Jean shorts - DIBY
Kalle Shirt/dress - Closet Case - sewn twice with two more planned
York Pinafore - Helens Closet - sewn three times
Fiona Sundress - Closet Case - sewn once
Melilot Shirt - Deer and Doe - sewn once
Givre Maternity tee/dress - Deer and Doe - sewn three times
Nikko Top/dress - True Bias - sewn twice
Blackwood Cardigan - Helens Closet - sewn once
Tabor V Neck - sewn once but another is ready to cut out
Berlin Jacket - Tessuti - sewn once
Dove Blouse - Megan Nielson - sewn once but want to make lots more
Kendrick Overalls - Hey June
Brunswick Pullover - Hey June - sewn twice
Lodo Dress - True Bias - cut out and ready to sew
Dawn Jeans - Megan Nielson
Jarrah Sweater - Megan Nielson - cut out and ready to sew

Alright well if all of that info didn't overwhelm you its a miracle! But I like to have this information to look back on and compare to other years. I am still solidifying my plans for this year but since I'm expecting baby #3 in 4 weeks, I want to be realistic about my time and energy, and also what I will wear. So I'm taking my time and being deliberate about it. Same with my goals, but I'll share them when they are all ready!


  1. I love your Hinterland dress so much!

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