And so the year comes to an end much how it began – with me sitting in bed looking at the dreary weather and tapping away at my ipad wondering where the time went. It seems only yesterday that I was a baby-fresh sewist excitedly planning my make 9 2018 list, and by planning I mean going “OMG THAT LOOKS CUTE I WANNA MAKE IT!” and sticking it on the list with no further thought. One thing that is evident from my choices is that I didn’t know much about sewing, or even about my own style.
Before I started sewing this looked like it was such a tricky pattern with all those pockets and the fancy stitching. I know it says it’s beginner, but I just could not believe it. Well I can now vouch that it is a super easy pattern and has been such a hit in my wardrobe that I’ve made 3! This is always the pattern I recommend for beginners now as the instructions are super easy and it is FASHUN so will transform the views of even the most ardent “sewing is for old ladies” believer.
My favourite red dress taught me a lot of things.
1. Sewing with rayon isn’t so scary.
2. French seams are time-consuming, but worth it as they look so good.
3. Grain lines DO matter as this skirt twists like nobody’s business.
4. If your seams don’t line up, just unpick the damn thing as otherwise it will annoy you every time you wear it.
I feel like this will forever be my summer wedding guest dress. I just love everything about it which surprised me so much as I didn’t think I was a floral person. As this is such a fancy dress, of which i need exactly 0 more, I don’t think I’ll make it in its dress form again anytime soon. However, a top version may find its way onto my Make 9 2019… watch this space!
The less successful
I so wanted this pattern to work as I love this dress but just look at that terrible fit. Now this isn’t the patterns fault – I used a quilting cotton is had for years which feels like sandpaper, and I’d cut out a size too big in fear it wouldn’t fit then taken it in at the back when I put the zip it so there was no chance of it working. Because I made such a mess of my first attempt I haven’t been able to bring myself to make it again. I do really want to make this as I love the collar detail and fit so I’m going to try in some non-stretch jumper material (is that a thing?) for a cosy winter dress.
If you are a beginner or non-sewist reading this let me give you some advice: don’t make a pattern just because it says it is beginner if you know full well you wouldn’t pick it up in a shop. It will only end with you feeling pants because the dress you spent so long working on looks like a sack of potatoes on you. Non-fitted shift dresses have never suited me, and yet I still thought this was a good idea! So whilst I don’t regret making it as it was a fabulous entry point to sewing, I’ve only worn it once and it is currently languishing in my to-refashion pile.
The rest of the patterns are ones I didn’t end up sewing either because I didn’t get round to it or because I no longer like them.
This pattern didn’t get sewn up purely because I was terrified of doing a pattern with a lining so kept putting it off. However, I have now sewn another pattern with a lining so I have no excuse no longer. I fell in love with this dress from reformation which is basically a doppelgänger for this pattern. Sadly the summer ended before I had chance to make it but I’m determined to make one next year.
In the year I started sewing I had no desire to sew anything practical so this was always pushed by the wayside. Even now when I’m much more into sewing things I’ll wear again and again I’ve become much more aware of other basic stretch top patterns which I prefer so I’m probably not going to make this.
It is beyond me why this was on my make 9 as I’ve never worn a circle skirt in my life. I even got a (different brand) circle skirt pattern printed and that hasn’t made me make it. I guess this is just a pattern that will go in the never-to-make pile…
In a similar vein, this dress was one of the first patterns I bought and it so isn’t me. 1950s vintage is a style I love the look of on other people but I never reach for to wear. Give me a 1940s tea dress over a 1950s full skirted dress any day!
5 out of 9 made, 3 out of 5 loved. Some may say that is a failure of a make 9 but I think it was such a useful activity as it really made me think about my style and what I wanted to wear. I’ve already started thinking about my make 9 2019 and what I actually need for the life I live instead of the 1950s princess life I thought I wanted to lead in my 2018 make 9. It can’t just be me who chose patterns I had no chance of making, was it?
Here’s to hoping 2019 is more successful. Watch this space for those plans!