Friday, 2 January 2015

The Year Past and The Year Forward

I've been enjoying reading everyone's blog review of their sewing year so thought I would add a few thoughts.
2014 is the year that sewing really happened for me. I have really enjoyed having this escape from every day life, and as I become more conscious of the ecological and human impacts of what I do and wear, the act of sewing has helped me feel that my choices are more viable. Through sewing, I know that respect has been given to the maker (me!) although the fabric may still be dirty ecologically. This is something that I hope to look into further in the coming year.
Green dots dress, worn again on Christmas Day
Increases capacity for feeling good! 
It has also been freeing as my imagination is the only limit on what I can create. It's meant that I now feel more 'me' in my clothes than I ever have before, and that's really special for someone that's never felt quite right following trends. Also, because I am tall it means that the clothes actually fit me. One of the only RTW bits of clothing I've bought this year was a gorgeous corduroy dress. The dress is lovely, but it doesn't really fit me. The waist is too high, and the skirt is too short, just - it's okay to wear with thick tights, but it's not really comfy and I feel a little self-conscious in it. This is a huge advantage to making my own, as now they fit me perfectly! That's the aim anyway ;)
Sketches for my sister's knitting bag birthday present
As yet unblogged as I have no finished pictures, but I really
loved making this! (Actually, no, I didn't - at the time there were
many threats about this being the last knitting bag I was ever
going to make... I'm already planning two more!)
Without a doubt, the most crazy thing I made this year was my bridesmaid dress for my sister's wedding. I have never blogged about it, but it was the second dress I ever made and I will always feel quite a lot of pride in it. Here it is:
I'm the one in purple!
You cannot see it all, but it was a joy to wear. Bamboo jersey from Truro Farbics, and just utterly delish. I self-lined it and made the pattern full-length with a split. It was a complete experiment and I'm astonished that I had the nerve. I think my sister getting married was a bit concerned, but it was lovely on the day. My other sister (there are three of us) also made hers, and it was also beautiful and a different style to suit her figure, and we were also congratulated on the day by so many people, including the waitress!
Trying to find the right colour, like a twit!
The dress was a success, and I did love it. It was my first jersey, my first invisible zip, many firsts for me (actually, it wasn't my first jersey. I stitched a dress in a weird jersey mix for a John Butler Trio gig and it felt great on the night, but oh my was it sweaty! I doubt I will ever wear it again...!). I did stretch the back fabric a bit when putting in the zip, and I did feel slightly conscious of it, but only once we were at the venue and I had amazing mirrors that showed me what I looked like from every angle! Damn those mirrors. Until then I had been oblivious, but I've since seen videos of me dancing....oh, why?!! and it wasn't as bad as it seemed on the day, so I just wish that I'd relaxed more then.
Wow, excuse the messy room! Not even mine
- my sister's, a couple of days before the wedding.
And also sorry for the poor lighting, I should
have done this better!
Overall a very exciting year for me. I have loved my makes and worn them all repeatedly (apart from the BMD, obvs). It has been quite a learning process as I have learnt what has worked and what has not. I'm getting better also, I think. There have been no crotchless trousers this year, and I hope there aren't any more to come! It's been a hard year in my private life, but sewing and knitting have been an escape from all that and have really lifted me at times when I was struggling to lift myself. If that's not a demonstration of the healing powers of creating, I don't know what is!

The things I've worn most have been my trousers of comfort and doom and my woodland strolls cape (to be blogged). There hasn't been much time to wear anything else much, though I have a feeling that I will be returning to my home-mades long after my RTWs have been forgotten. We'll see!


I aim to continue making most of my clothes.

I want to make a waistcoat, a Malvarosa dress, an Emmeline T-shirt, I was hoping to make jeans, but then remembered that I hate wearing jeans, so I might try and find an equivalent that I don't hate so much - cords? and whatever else may come my way. I want to get better at sewing knits so that I can start to make up items such as t-shirts and vests to go underneath things. That would be super, and I hope to start making underwear too!

I have several weddings already lined up this year, and so I hope to make a dress that will take me through all of them. I love this fabric, is this madness?! and also this. In fact, I think that second may be my favourite ever fabric, so we'll just have to see what happens there! I think this bolero would work nicely though I don't have a dress idea firmed up yet (and I'm not really sure that the pattern is worth $18!!).

I love knitting, and I really hope to finish Anemone soon. She has really tested me, and I am going to love her in all her tangerine glory! I hope thereafter to make something simpler, but have yet to figure out what that will be!

I have been so inspired by my favourite blogs that I would love to give something of that back. Every post I write helps me analyse what I learnt during the making, and I think I'm going to enjoy all this. As a test, I am hoping to participate in Me Made May this year. We'll see what happens, but I had better get making fast if I want to be in with a chance of succeeding!

So here's to a Happy New Year to you all. Sew long and prosper ;)

Thanks for reading!
Walking in a hand-knitted jumper. Sunshine! 

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