Can you believe 2018 is almost here? In a week and a half I’ll be in Minneapolis to celebrate the holidays with family and friends! I’m finishing up a pair of pajamas right now, but other than that I think I’ve sewn up everything I’m going to sew in 2017. It has been a very productive year. To see my top 5 makes, top 5 misses, to read about my goals for 2018, and to join in on the conversation, read on.
Top 5 Makes
I had a really tough time narrowing down my top 5 makes this year, which is a good thing! This year I’ve really noticed my skills improve. I think I’ve been better about knowing the correct size to cut, blending sizes on patterns, and utilizing more professional finishing techniques. What new skills have improved your overall sewing this year? In no particular order, here are my top 5 favorite makes of 2017:
This dress proved very popular on Instagram. I wore it to work last Monday and I felt comfortable all day long. I also learned how to apply heavy-duty snaps and work with flannel.
I love this coatigan so much that I wear it practically every day. I wear it mostly as a house robe. It’s so comfortable and warm. I also love this make because I learned how to use my coverstitch machine while making this project. I’ve been searching for lovely knits so that I can make more cozy cardigans in 2018. I have my eye on the Named Esme Cardigan for next year.
These jeans won me second place in the Fabric Mart challenge. I still need to use my gift card for 2018 but I can’t decide what to get!
I think this year also felt like a successful sewing year because I truly did get a lot of wear out of the makes I made. Do you ever feel like you never wear anything you sew? I sometimes have that problem, but this summer I lived in this Seamwork dress and I wore this cool kimono as a beach coverup. I think I’ve just been a lot smarter about choosing the right fabrics.
Oh man, I love this look. My 30th birthday is in April and my best friend and I are going on a Royal Caribbean cruise. I’m already planning on wearing this outfit to celebrate my birthday. It’s just so special to me. The fabric is divine. I bought it at Mood Fabrics LA two years ago. I also learned how to insert boning with this project. It’s just my absolute favorite.
Now let’s take a look at some of the lesser successful projects (despite my best efforts to make them look good on camera). Here are my top 5 losers, in no particular order:
The real problem for me is the fabric. It seemed cool to me when I bought it, but reds just don’t go well with my skin tone. I’ve hardly ever worn this sweater. So I’ve decided that I’d like to give it away to a good home! It’s a size medium. If you would like this sweater, shoot me in an email at email@example.com and send me your address and I’ll try to get it to you by Christmas!
This top ended up being such a disappoint for me. I loved this fabric. It’s Anna Sui from Mood Fabrics NYC. It’s so cute! But it’s a very delicate fabric that did not hold up well to all of the manipulation that this pattern requires. So despite my best efforts, after one wear it’s already starting to come apart. Secondly, even though the style is cute, I really prefer tops that I can tuck into my pants. I have a vintage aesthetic and I love the look of a tucked-in top. I hardly ever wear shits loose like this over my waist. I prefer a defined waistline. So ultimately the pattern and fabric ended up being all wrong for me and it’s time to part ways with this top.
This project is also really heartbreaking for me because I wanted to love it. I love the fabric and I loved seeing other people’s version of this cool top on the interwebs. Sadly, it’s a fit issue. I could get the top to stay in place to catch some photos, but in reality I would never feel comfortable wearing this out. It’s too cropped and I’m constantly worried it’s going to fall off my shoulders. So annoying!
At first, I thought this might be a cool dress. But I could never bring myself to wear it out. On retrospect, I think the fabric just looks cheap. I’m not into it.
This is another make where in theory the pattern and fabric should have worked well together, but I’m just not crazy about it. First of all, this top is too small. Second of all, it wrinkles like mad and I can’t stand that. Third, I can’t tuck this top in, either,without it billowing around my waist, and again, I like a smooth and defined waistline. So unfortunately, this top is not a winner.
Top 5 Highlights of the Year
2017 was really fun. Here are my top 5 highlights, personal and sewing-wise:
5. I started a new job
I left the public defender’s office, where I worked for three and a half years, and joined a local non-profit law firm, where I now specialize in education law. It was hard to leave my team of colleagues at the public defender’s office, but I think this was ultimately the right move for me. I think it’s important as a relatively young lawyer to keep learning and expanding your repertoire of skills (just as in sewing!).
4. I bought a coverstitch machine
You need to have the right tools to move forward and progress your skills. I hope to use this machine more in 2018.
3. I learned how to mountain bike
This year I bought a mountain bike, joined a local mountain bike group and rode locally all summer, went to a weekend long mountain bike camp for women in Brown County, Indiana, and went to a mountain biking festival in Hendersonville, North Carolina. I had a great time learning a new sport and I can’t wait to get back on my bike this spring. I might even buy a better bike in 2018.
2. Mixed Media Art Class
I took a local art class this year on mixed media and had a lot of fun playing with paper, glue, acrylics, watercolors, and everything else you can think of.
1. Learned how to ride a motorcycle
My boyfriend taught me how to ride motorcycle this summer. My plan is to take a real riding class this spring so that we might be able to ride together when we go to Italy next fall.
Top 5 Goals for 2018:
There are so many things I want to do next year. I hope I’ll be able to find the time and money to meet my goals.
5. Madalynne’s Bra Making Workshops in Philadelphia
Have you heard about these workshops? Have you been? She has several offered for 2018. Plus, I’ve never been to Philadelphia before. If I can find the time and the money, I’d like to do this. Wanna join me??
4. Mimi G’s Sewing Conference in LA
I went two summers ago and had a blast! I’d love to go again this year. Everything’s kind of up in the air, though, because there’s a good possibility I’ll be moving in the next 12 months or less. My boyfriend is finishing up his phd program and is looking for post-doctorate positions now. So it’s hard to plan big trips without having a clear idea of what our summer and fall will look like.
3. Use my coverstitch machine more
It’s not that I’ve been avoiding it (I swear) but I don’t have any decent knit fabrics. If you’ve come across any cute knits, let me know!
2. Learn to sew a curved waistband
No more ill-fitting skirt waistbands please!
1. Blog Makeover
It’s time for a makeover. I started this blog three years ago. I want to get rid of the image slider bar. I think it makes my page load slowly. So my plan is to makeover the blog over the holidays when I’m back home.
Ok, that’s everything. If you’ve read everything up to this point, you’re a very faithful reader. What did you think? Do you agree with my list? What do you have planned for 2018? Have you written a roundup, too? Link yours in the comments below so that I can follow.
Cheers and have a very merry christmas!