Writing my #2018MakeNine sewing review post highlighted how I’d put sewing for comfort and practicality above anything else last year. One of the reasons I’d placed comfort so highly though, was simply that I was actually very uncomfortable in my own skin. Reaching what my Doctor refers to as my ‘mature years’ and dealing with the subsequent hormonal changes, hit me unexpectedly and hard. Some days I really struggled to get dressed – I need to wear breathable fabrics and can’t abide anything compressing or overly fitted; even wearing underwear can drive me to distraction. Always an insomniac, it got out of hand; my joints started to seize up and I was wracked with pain most days. I honestly felt like a woman in her 70s, not her 40s.
My weight fluctuated quite dramatically over the course of the last year too and, if I’m honest, I had this unhealthy internal dialogue that would assert that, given the way I felt, it was pointless to sew anything too ‘nice’.
So what’s different this year? Well…
…quite a lot! I’m prioritising my health. To kickstart that, sewing and everything else was put on a back-burner through January. Simply by dint of dealing with my health issues – rather than ‘just’ suffering with them – feels great. I’ve finally found a natural regime that seems to be working; I’ve literally got a spring in my step for the first time in a loooong time. My sewing plans for 2019 are very much tied in with my overall aim of maintaining this sense of wellbeing – sewing clothes that also makes me feel good.
So, without further ado, here’s that list – by no means all I plan to make this year – but it’s definitely a list that makes me smile:
Marie Apron by Maven Patterns
Now you might not think this an overly exciting make – but I do! I love the utilitarian simplicity of the design lines coupled with the Marie Apron‘s Japanesque artist vibe; I’ve fancied a crossover back apron like this for years. Funny the things we crave isn’t it! Made in a good denim, I see this apron lasting years. It’s something I plan to use as my ‘sewing uniform’ – finally relegating my PJs to nightwear only! Its cute pockets will also be great for stashing my phone whilst I sew, as I currently tend to mindlessly leave it ‘here, there and everywhere’ and then repeatedly spend silly amounts of time looking for it!
Gemma Tank by Made by Rae
Ah, I just think the Gemma Tank is a classic basic and, I assume, very quick to make. I’m hoping it becomes a wardrobe staple as this is the kind of casual tank I love to chuck on, paired with a cardigan on colder days. It’s got darts for shaping and I love the curved hemline. And, in the spirit of making clothes that are more than just practical and functional; that make me happy, I plan to make my first in some gorgeous silk voile. Yes it will be practical and fill a hole in my closet but it will also be luxurious.
It’s got a couple of options for the neckline, the jewel neck as pictured here and a more scooped one. I can see myself making loads of both!
The Jenny Overalls by Closet Case Files
I’ve got to admit; I absolutely adored the look of the Jenny Overalls / Dungarees when the pattern was first released and I spent a long time talking myself out of buying it, debating whether it would look even half as good on me as it does on the beautiful model; arguing that I was too short to pull them off and ‘reasoned’ that the design was too young for me. Oh screw all that! New Year : New Mindset … I’m making these!
I’ve got the hardware and fabric stashed for it. My denim is a burnished bronze sort of colour which is more in my palette comfort range than this beautiful pink. Whatever else, I reckon they’ll be fun to sew!
The Carnaby Dress by Nina Lee, London
I think the Carnaby is such a great little shift dress; I love how it can be colour blocked and adore those cheeky inseam front pockets. I had such a good experience sewing their Piccadilly PJs that I feel confident about their drafting fitting my frame pretty well straight out of the envelope, with perhaps just two or three of my usual adjustments.
I think I’m sensing a real shift towards denims and linens this year; I really like how breathable, hardwearing and long-lasting a garment made up in such fabrics then become.My #2019MakeNine Sewing Plans
I can see this being a great dress for days when I really don’t want to feel physically restricted in any way. This is such an easy-wear shape and I see it working as well in cooler months as hot, paired with thick tights. Practical yet versatile but…
…y’know, let’s not overthink this…it’s just cute!
I like how this dress can be made in heavier fabrics and I think I’m sensing a real shift towards denims and linens this year; I really like how breathable, hardwearing and long-lasting a garment made up in such fabrics then become. I’m fed up of investing the time making clothes that look ‘tired’ quickly which leads to me feeling as if I’m constantly ‘chasing my tail’ trying to fill my wardrobe. This totally detracts from the pleasure of sewing simply for the sake of sewing and is absolutely goes against my aim of mindful sewing.
McCalls M7726 High Waisted Wider Leg Trousers
I’ve been bandying around the notion of making wider leg trousers for some time, as they create a balance to my top-heavy silhouette. That plan hasn’t yet come together though. I think McCalls M7726 may come to the rescue. First off, I’m really keen to sew more Big 4 patterns this year and this one has some really interesting details – the ‘paperbag’ waist option, for example, plus varying leg widths and lengths, including shorts.
These trousers combine classic elements with some up-to-date touches yet overall remind me of 1980s chic. They were also placed in Pattern Reviews top patterns of last year. That’s recommendation enough for me.
Burda Style Magazine
Something…anything…from my growing Burda Style Magazine stash. I subscribed to this nearly a year ago and I love that moment when it drops on my doormat. But I haven’t made a single thing from it yet!
There’s something about the almost indecipherable nest of patterns in the centre of the mag, the shortform instructions and the need to add seam and hem allowances that makes me feel that sewing a pattern from within its pages would be something of a ‘right of passage’. Either that or I’m a tad masochistic!
Actually, I’ve fallen in love with a dress from Issue 01/2019, the #108 – it’s a loose fitting shirtdress with raglan sleeves. Made up in a breathable fabric, I can see this becoming a classic in my wardrobe for days when I want to feel more put together without sacrificing comfort. And if it turns out to be what I want it to be, I rather fancy the idea of a silk version. Truly I’m half-tempted to just download the pattern from the above link, rather than mess about tracing from the magazine. Is that cheating, haha?!
Learning to Knit Socks
I tried anf failed miserably at this last year. In fairness, I gave up very quickly! However, my local yarn shop runs a course, supplying all the materials too. So once she sets dates that actually work with my diary, ill be knitting my merry little heart out. I can knit very basically; I just cant follow a knitting pattern. If that fails, I hope to be visiting my #sewtogetherforsummer co-host Suzy at the end of June and she’s a sock-knitting maestro. One way or another, by winter, I’ll be sat knitting socks in front of the fire like the little old lady I no longer feel I am!
Vogue V9267 Fit n Flare Dress
I remember seeing V9267 upon its release and immediately trying to get my hands on the pattern; except it wasn’t available in the UK yet. I then promptly forgot about it until it too popped up in the Pattern Review ‘Best Pattern of 2018’ list. Forming part of their ‘Custom Fit’ range, it has cup options; is fully lined and has various style options. It is now safely in my stash!
I love how it can be made in a variety of fabrics and, true to this years’ theme, denim and silk are options. It’s not my usual style granted and it certainly wont make for everyday daywear…but I do want a special dress for my birthday this year. Not that I need excuses or reasons though, aye!?
McCalls M7513 Jacket
And that, my friends, is that. Any here that you like or have plans to sew too?
Until next time, hugs