Resolutions for 2019

I partially achieved my goals for 2018. Here are my revised goals for 2019:

Sewing Goal

Sewing comfortable items that fit my style

I have very little time to sew, so I want to sew things that are for the life I lead. I travel a lot, so I don’t want to worry about wrinkles. I would like to explore knits more. That’s what I buy when I go to the store. On the other hand, I have a stash of mostly wovens, so maybe I need to think about a destashing sale.

Social Goal

Meeting new people and making friends where I live now

I’ve met a couple of people where we live now, but I would like to build a community. There’s nothing like having someone to hang out with on the weekends!

Personal Improvement Goal

Improving my Spanish vocabulary and strengthening my ability to have a conversation

I’m keeping this goal. I now live in a place that has more hispanohablantes than any other place I’ve lived before and I would like to be able to better communicate with people who speak mostly only Spanish. I would like to try to take a night class this year.
Professional Development Goal

Learning HTML and CSS, then perhaps JavaScript

Creating a portfolio of original work

I started working on learning HTML and CSS in 2018. I would like to continue my studies there and create some samples. If I feel comfortable with progressing at any point during the year, I will start working on learning JavaScript. It’s so important to build a skillset!

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What I’m Working On

I have a few things in the works right now:

  • A quilt made of scraps (my first attempt at quilting) (I like the Diary of a Quilter strip tutorial, but I’m trying out sewing strips together with no backing to see how that looks first)
  • A Sew Over It Tulip Skirt in mystery suiting from a local fabric store
  • Simplicity 8179 pajama pants for my husband in cat-printed flannel, using the same pattern that I used last month

I want to start New Look 6261, a sheath dress, but I also don’t want to have too many unfinished objects around. The end of the year is busy with work and family time, so there’s not a lot of time to sew. I’m hoping that I can make the New Look dress into a TNT for a work dress to wear under a blazer…we will see.

How do you plan for sewing time when there’s not a lot of time left over?

 

Simplicity 8179: Lounge Pants with Pockets

I’d been looking for a pattern for pajama pants with pockets for a while when I found Simplicity 8179.

I like the way the pocket is formed, with a pocket facing and topstitching.

Simplicity 8179 Lounge Pants

Simplicity 8179, Lounge Pant Pocket

I sewed a size Large. The fabric is a flannel from JoAnn Fabrics. I decided to not add the leg facing due to the pants already being more than long enough for me, a woman 5’4″ tall. I plan on sewing these again for my husband in the same size.

Simplicity 8179 Lounge Pants

Simplicity 8179 Lounge Pants

I do like how the pockets are large enough to hold a packet of tissues (essential for the winter sniffles) or a phone. This was a “regaining my sewing energy” project, so it’s not perfect, but I am so happy to have the finished product. I’d like to find an easy top to sew to match.

Butterick 6178 Culottes in Black Linen

I started on these Butterick 6178 culottes about three months ago. I promise you that they don’t actually take that long to sew. With the one-two punch of my sewing room being uninhabitable due to summer heat and me being on travel for part of the summer, my sewing pace slowed considerably.

Butterick 6178 culottes

These culottes are made of black linen from Ebad Fabrics in Manhattan. The linen is flowy and slightly see-through. I sewed a size 18 and added about an inch to the back rise of the culottes to allow for more booty room. I did not follow the directions for the waistband; I didn’t interface it and I folded it in half before sewing it to the pants. The waistband is finished with a zigzag.

I enjoy these culottes and I am excited that I finally finished them!

Pants Lesson in New York

I’m finally starting to feel settled in New Jersey. I’ve been on the job for three weeks; we finally have a sofa and storage pieces; I have become familiar with the bus and train systems of New Jersey (sort of…Newark Penn Station is confusing still, with all the different places that have similar names where passengers need to wait for the bus). Last weekend, I felt settled enough to do something just for me—take a sewing lesson.

I decided to work on pants in this lesson. I’d tried fitting these Vogue trousers before, in a different sewing class in SC, but I then gained a lot of weight, which made all the fitting moot. The lesson I had last weekend was at the New York Sewing Center, located in the Garment District. The instructor was awesome. She was patient and didn’t talk to me like I was a kid (an issue I have had in other sewing classes in other cities). I made a huge amount of progress in two hours, getting the pockets, inseams, and side seams sewn. I plan on sewing the crotch and attaching the waistband before going back to work on fitting. I suspect I need more room for my butt, less of a curve on the hips, and less length overall, due to me being a shorty. I’m really looking forward to my next lesson!

Simplicity 1062, View C: Dolman-Sleeve Knit Top

I made Simplicity 1062, View C again. The last time I made it, I used a size Large and a rayon knit; this time, I used a size Medium and a mystery poly knit. I got the fabric on a shopping trip with my mother-in-law at Fabric Warehouse in Rahway, NJ.

Simplicity 1062 View C

I don’t know why I have such a look on my face.

I used the serger to sew all of the bands, and I used a zig-zag stitch to secure the hem. This was really easy and quick to make, and I like how it feels in a thicker knit. I also like how the longer back hem covers the gap that can appear when you bend over while wearing jeans. I would definitely sew this up a third time!

Simplicity 1062 View C Again

It’s wide! Also, serious face.

Just so you know, this pattern includes about 8 inches of ease in the body, but the arm bands are snug.

Are there any knit tops that you like?

 

McCalls 3830 and Cation Designs Dolman Tee

Hello there! I’ve been sewing rather slowly. My old Brother sewing machine decided that it likes to eat knits, even when I’m using the walking foot. I now have a Pfaff (with the IDT!) that my husband kindly got me for my birthday. It handles ITY knits like a champ! I’m excited about it.

I started both of these items about 25 lbs. ago, and it shows–they’re both rather too big for me know. I know I’ll still wear them on the weekend, though, as long as I can without them falling off.

I’ve made the Cation Designs Dolman Tee before. I love it for work because it comes off as elegant and it also has sleeves, which are necessary in a chilly office environment. This one is made of an ITY I got while shopping with my mother-in-law at the Fabric Warehouse in Rahway, NJ. It is a size XL; next time I sew it, I will use a L or M.

Cation Designs Dolman Tee and McCalls 3830 Skirt

Awkward timed selfie.

The McCalls 3830 skirt is made of a rayon/linen blend. I think I got that at Joann’s, as I couldn’t find plain linen in dark colors online at the time I was shopping for it, for some reason. I like the hand of the fabric. The skirt is the shortest view with no back vent and I believe I used a size 18 or 20. I should use a 16 next time, I think, and also take a little off the side seam curve, as my hips are not as curvy as the pattern is. I am closer to success with this pattern!

Cation Designs Dolman Tee and McCalls 3830 Skirt 2

This one is much better and shows the drape of the knit.

I love the idea of #sewmystashseptember. My stash has gotten uncomfortably large from all these shopping trips while traveling and little gifts to myself when I am feeling blah and uninspired. Now it is time for me to make these lengths of cloth into clothes I love.

I am interested in going at it from a capsule + purpose perspective: travel capsule (quick-drying, anti-wrinkling, stretch, chic for tourist photographs); casual Fridays/weekends capsule (structured, but not TOO structured, colorful), and work capsule (basic, dark colors, opaque, full coverage). I wonder how I can fit my stash in there.

My grandmother used to buy me complete outfits whenever we did back to school or vacation shopping. I remember getting coordinated shorts and tops sets with matching socks and a coordinating cardigan (and maybe matching hair bows and barrettes too) when we prepared for our first vacation together to Seattle. So much pink! I would like to approach my sewing this way too: for every top, there must be a bottom, and every bottom must have a top. That doesn’t mean a 1:1 ratio, as many tops can match a bottom. However, the styles and shapes must go together. That’s something for me to think about as I approach the stash.

How do you approach building a wardrobe and managing your resources?