As usual I started 2020 with grand sewing plans which I outlined in #makenine2020 post early in the year. I thought nine garments was achievable and I really wanted to create a me made wardrobe as I have done so much sewing for other people over the last few years.
I got off to a flying start by my standards but of course fate intervened in the shape of the pandemic. My sewing skills were put to use creating reusable fabric face masks for family and friends but expanded to include making some for local independent businesses and also retailing them through those outlets. Further expansion included the establishment of an online shop, so the production of face masks left little time for dressmaking and to be honest I was sometimes sick of the sight of my sewing machine.
Black trousers: I didn’t blog about these as I felt they were not an interesting enough garment but they have been the success story of the year. I did draft Burdastyle 01/2012 style 122 but felt the rise looked low and I don’t do low rises these days. I remembered Burda 6985 paper pattern in my collection which had a similar simple trouser style but a much higher rise.
I cut out a size 38 and made them up in a stretch gabardine. These made up beautifully, fit well (no alterations necessary – how rare is that?) and the fabric is so comfortable and washes well. With all the wear I’ve had out of them they are beginning to bobble slightly and so 2021 may see a new pair being made. I can’t fault Burda trouser patterns. They work for me. I guess it’s like when you find a RTW brand that suits.
Skirt: I was originally toying with a utility type style but when Sea of Teal posted her prints theme for June a length of leopard print double gauze I had sprang to mind and I used a Patrones pattern to make a simple button through skirt. It was my first time using a Patrones pattern and the only thing I noticed was that the waist to hip measurement is much smaller than Burda and some of the other sewing magazines so although I chose size by hip measurement I needed to remember to cut the waistline slightly larger. The skirt got a lot of wear during summer in the warm weather. Double gauze is a fabric new to me. I found it easy to work with and very comfortable and lightweight to wear although it’s double layer construction does make it look deceptively thicker.
Dress: This was made up using the Vogue pattern and spotted mustard double gauze fabric I outlined in my plans. As I said in the blog on this project I wanted to love this more than I did. I made a 12 going by measurements on the envelope but I really should have done a 10. I’ve worn it and it is okay but I just know it feels a tad large.
Seventies blouse: I love this style with its bishop sleeves and zip neckline. I also love the retro feel of the brown fabric but I really haven’t had the chance to wear it anywhere this year being a bit fancy for wearing round the house. Still it is there waiting for the right opportunity and I did enjoy using the vintage seventies’ Style pattern with its comprehensive instructions. Those were the days!
Knitted beret: I chose some gorgeous mustard fleck chunky wool to create the cabled beret style on Sirdar pattern. I do enjoy knitting cables and this made up quickly. You don’t need double pointed needles and it is knitted in rows starting at the rib edge with decreasing towards the crown. Of course it is getting some use now we are in winter.
Grey knit sweater: One of my goals this year was to use my overlock sewing machine more to sew stretch fabric garments. This jumper project was an opportunity to do just that having just managed to squeeze it in as my last me made of 2020. I used Simplicity and the sweater made up beautifully. I really like the use of the double bands to finish the sleeves and hems as the twin needle method on a standard sewing machine can be temperamental plus it meant that I didn’t have to get two machines set up. I’ve worn this straightaway. It is so warm and comfortable made in a lovely soft knit fabric. Perfect for this time of year.
The ones that got away: Jacket blazer, drawstring trousers and the wildcard. Sewing something like a jacket demands time and commitment both of which I was short of in 2020. The wildcard was going to be an outfit for an event but of course these were all cancelled because of the pandemic. However these projects will be carried over into this year as I have the patterns and fabrics ready and waiting to go.
In the absence of a wild card I did create some other garments mostly quick projects I managed to sneak in between all the mask making which could be contenders for wild card 2020.
The Fibremood Norma: This was my first experience of using a Fibremood pattern. Their designs seem to be aimed towards indie pattern users and in the main that aesthetic doesn’t really suit me. I actually bought Fibremood 9 for the trousers but thought the blouse could be a good lightweight alternative to T-shirts. By the time I made it the good weather had gone but I hope to get some wear out of it this year paired with some cropped trousers.
Jalie T-shirt: For several years now I have been contemplating using my overlocker to make simple T-shirts. However as they could be bought fairly cheaply I never got motivated. Now I can’t find the fit I like in RTW and Jalie pattern 2805 fitted the bill. I only made a trial T-shirt using some stripey jersey from the stash but I was very impressed with this pattern plus the versatility it offers. While only a test piece I ended up wearing it a lot.
My Image Jumpsuit: Another experimental project using a stretch jersey. I’ve used a few My Image patterns now and find the fit similar to Burda. These are comfortable but I’m still not sure I’m sold on jumpsuits as you practically have to undress when you go to the ladies room.
Vintage seventies knitted sweater: I don’t do much knitting but occasionally I get the urge to pick up some needles. The good thing about knitting is you can just do a few rows now and again or while watching the tv. I’d been browsing vintage knitting patterns on the internet and this Sirdar seventies style caught my eye. I actually really enjoyed making this with its vintage styling of a long skinny rib and chose seventies beige to go with the brown cords.
So all in all a satisfactory year of me mades. Yes I’d liked to have sewn a few more things but as I said in my original #makenine2020 post if the end result was five or six items I would regard that as a success.