Wednesday, 10 February 2016

2015 In Makes

Suddenly we are into February and it feels a little late for a "round up" post but since I've not blogged any of these projects it seems appropriate to jump in with a little catch up what I was making last year.

*Warning - There's some really bad selfies in here... I can only apologise*

Simple Sew Lottie Pencil Skirt

This pattern came with an early issue of Love Sewing magazine. I was just returning to work after maternity leave here and was planning a few work friendly wardrobe basics. I had so many issues with this pattern, from the poor instructions to the fact that the waistband pieces just didn't fit the top of the skirt. Which is a shame as the end result was cute and withstood quite a bit of wear in the early part of the year.

Sewaholic Renfrew - View C Cowl Neck

It's no secret that I love Sewaholic patterns and like many others the Renfrew is a definite TNT. I made my usual adjustment of adding 3" to the bodice length, I like my tops to comfortably cover my hips. This stripe was a lightweight knit I picked up in Abakhan some months earlier and had been sat cut out in my sewing box since the previous November. I'm really happy with one and it's taken a lot of wear, I'm looking forward to pulling it back out post baby!

New Look 6150

This gorgeous knit was picked up on my local market stall, we have a couple of fabric stalls and shops in our town and whilst they don't hold a massive array of choice I often come across lovely pieces whilst having a lunch time potter.  This crossover top is really sweet and has been worn a few times for work but I have to confess to finding the neckline just a touch high for my taste, that's a fairly minor issue though, it's still a really wearable make.

Sewaholic Cambie - My 30th Birthday Dress!

I had a proper party for my 30th so I wasn't letting the occasion pass without going all out and making a pretty frock in gorgeous Liberty fabric. It took quite some time to get the fit right, I must have put together 4 or 5 bodice muslins before settling on a 1" FBA in the size 8. Looking at these photos I am mourning my pre-pregnancy figure! This was such a fun sew, fully lined and paired with a gorgeous petticoat I really felt great wearing it. Pictured here with my wonderful friend Emma, who came along in her gorgeous BHL Flora dress.

More Sewaholic Renfrews

If in doubt, make a Renfrew, or two. Just using pretty fabrics from stash (the floral cost around £5 from Abakhan) to fill out my wardrobe with some basic tees. Not sure I will ever tire of making this pattern, it just provides the perfect base to show off gorgeous fabric in a totally wearable and useful garment.

Julia Cardigan

By this point in the year I knew I was pregnant so attempted to shift my sewing to garments that would see me through regardless of belly size.  This pattern was so quick and easy to put together, I could definitely see me making it again in a drapier jersey. It's seen plenty of action, great for wearing either with jeans or belting over a maternity dress.

Simplicity 2447

There are no finished shots of this shirt as, it's not actually finished. It doesn't have any buttons or buttonholes yet. But shamefully I wear it quite regularly! The pregnant body situation means that I couldn't button it up if it was an option so I tend to throw it on over a maternity tee and leggings. This was my first adventure into shirt making and I thoroughly loved the opportunity to get really into details such as topstitching and plaid matching. The fabric is a soft brushed cotton I purchased from Croft Mill some time a couple of years ago. So one day I had better sew those buttons on!

Simplicity 1359 Maternity Skirt

Super quick and simple maternity skirt using a nice heavy grey jersey from the market. The elasticated waist can be expanded but I haven't needed to. I have worn this most weeks for work during pregnancy, a great basic. I wish I'd had time to make the t-shirt on the pattern too!

Swoon Patterns - Scarf Neck Cardigan

I love this pattern but the acres of narrow knit hem were challenging and I wish I'd made it in a slinkier, drapier fabric. I wear it a lot for work though, it's been another great piece to layer with maternity dresses.

Patons Fab Big Cowl

If you hadn't noticed, the knits are pretty thin on the ground so far in the year, I've got to confess to having completely lost my knitting mojo for several months so I just went with what interested me at the time, dressmaking and developing the garden. In September I picked up this giant ball of mustard yarn in John Lewis whilst out shopping with a friend to see if I could get myself kick started again. The terrible selfie is a "look Mum I finished something" photo from bed time one evening!

Burda 7165 - Maternity Trousers

Both pattern and fabric were purchased as part of a kit from MyFabrics. I loved sewing these up but shamefully they haven't actually left my wardrobe once. This isn't the first time I've made a leap for patterned trousers and not got to grips with wearing them. I think I prefer my prints on the top half. The fit of these was superb though and I was particularly pleased with the over bump band.

Pipe Dreams by Natalie Jubb

Using up some chunky yarn from stash for an instant gratification knitting project. The urge to knit always returns with the autumn weather. I started out making this for myself but a certain small boy stole it for himself.

Foxy Hat

I tried making him his own hat, which he loves, but I still didn't get the grey one back. This hat gets so many compliments!

Winter Wonderland Mittens

Probably the worst photo of what is actually a gorgeous finished item. In fact I don't even think they are blocked here, the cuff of the glove on the right still needs sewing down, oops! I started these shortly after Christmas 2014 so in a bit of an amnesty on WIPs I got them polished off. I love them, and just wish that this winter had been cold enough to actually need them.

Megan Neilsen Perfect Nursing Top - Simplicity 1469

I had such high hopes for this top but was left pretty disappointed by the sizing, it came up huge and I had to take about two inches off each side of the bodice to get it wearable, which was a shame as it put me off making it again. I've worn the end product plenty though which only goes in it's favour.

Baable Hat

If you went anywhere near Ravelry last Autumn you couldn't fail to have come across this gorgeous colourwork hat designed for Shetland Wool Week. Fast and fun to work up this is one of my favourite knits ever! I do so love knitting fair isle.

Santa - Jean Greenhowe

Years ago I made Jean's knitted snowman and he's a firm part of our Christmas decorations so I thought it would be fun to add Santa to the collection, mostly for Jack's sake. I love how these knitted toys breakdown into little sections, making them perfect TV knitting.

Quilted Tree Skirt

I've been meaning to do this for a few years now, in fact I pinned the Pinterest tutorial 4 years ago! With redecorating our living space in time for Christmas we invested in a bigger and more beautiful tree so the time had come to give it a pretty skirt. The Michael Miller fabrics came from a local sewing shop.

If you've made it this far, well done! Before I put this post together I didn't think I'd made a lot in 2015, but all together like this it's not a bad output.

I've certainly learned in the last year that less is more, and to pick my projects based on wardrobe need rather than leaping for the shiny "frosting" patterns and fabrics. I've also really embraced sewing with knits which has helped make my creations much more in line with the RTW pieces I would head for in the shops.

So lets see what 2016 brings! At the moment I am enjoying a little baby knitting, my sewing machine has fallen quiet as I feel so very rounded that I'm not feeling inspired to sew for myself. I'm really looking forward to getting back to it in the spring with a bit of luck.

If you'd like any links or more details on any of the projects, just pop your question in the comments and I'll do my best to help. I'll also try to brush up on my finished item photography!

Jenny xxx

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