Posts Tagged ‘Year in review’


Getting Serious About 2013

January 12, 2013

Okay, if my week at work was any indication, the holiday season is over and 2013 has officially begun. This means I’m a little late on my annual review and goal setting but you already know about the SWAP Plan so you’re not completely in the dark.

Last year, I made 5 sewing and blogging goals for myself. Let’s see how I did:

1. SWAP 2012. Well I completed most of it and blogged about it at the end of the summer. I didn’t get photos done in time because I got sick so I didn’t actually enter but some of the items I made have become wardrobe standards like the white pants which I wore all summer long with the highest pair of heels I’ve ever owned, and the floral blouse which officially made McCalls 5661 into one of my go to patterns.

2. Trench coat. I finished the trench coat at last!!
Here it is again because I’m excited to have finished it and I plan  to make another coat this year:

3. Complete some other online challenge. Okay, I did this one but I kind of kept it quiet because I didn’t have time to blog it and because I’ve not shared much of my inner non sewing geek on this blog. Last spring, I started following the Star Wars blog and podcast (haven’t really been keeping up with the podcast) Tosche Station. And they had a contest to create a new outfit for the character Mara Jade (links to Wookiepedia) who, despite always being written as having pockets, is always drawn as wearing a skin tight catsuit devoid of pockets.

So I spent time looking at Star Wars images and got out some of my fashion and costuming books. Then I got all Frankenpatternie, bought a wig that doesn’t quite flatter my skin tone, and came up with this:

I think I would like to spend more time figuring out how I think she would have actually dressed. There could be some designing in it.

4. Comment on Sewing blogs. I’ve tried to  be good about commenting but I didn’t become the contributor I intended to be. I’ve found that Blogger isn’t always good about recognizing my WordPress identity so I wind up just commenting under my name. I will have to work on that more.

5. Read Costuming books. I read through a few of them but I have plenty to  go.

So that was 2.5 – 3 out of 5. I’m getting better.

This is what I would like to accomplish in 2013

1. SWAP 2013. I would like to complete this year’s SWAP and then I think it might be time to take a break from this particular contest and explore others.

2. Learn to sew undergarments. I’m one of those people who can never find attractive looking bras in my size, so I’d like to learn how to make my own.

3. Take part in 2 other online challenges/contests. Contests help me learn to sew to a deadline which is something I have difficulty doing.

4.Redecorate my sewing room. The room needs to be decorated and I would like to do that this year.

5.Add more in process photos to my entries. Sometimes I forget to take photos while sewing. I want to remember to do more of this this year.

I didn’t quite make my first goal on my SWAP work plan. I made the two shirts but haven’t done the skirt yet. That is on the agenda for this weekend.

I will have pictures.


2011 Here I Come

January 1, 2011

My Christmas trip  isn’t over yet. We fly home tomorrow, so I can’t say I wound up the year with any major sewing projects.

Here is how I did with regards to my 2010 goals

1. Post in this blog at least 4 times a month (once a week would be ideal)  I didn’t always manage 4 posts a month but since I posted so much in May and June, I did manage an average of 4 posts a month so I didn’t do too badly with this one. One thing I do need to get better at is blogging more of what I sew. There are a few things I’ve made that never made it onto the blog including another version of McCalls 4444 that I hope to get pictures of when we go south in a week. I also made Vogue 1117  for my mother so she could have something new for the Christmas dance she went to. I even finished the Rachel Comey blouse I talked about incessantly but I didn’t really like the way it fit in the end. I should have picked a fabric with a different drape. The silk I chose was too boxy.

Here it is:

It’s definitely one I want to try again with a less structural fabric.

2. Complete the Timmel SWAP – I want to make the deadline but I also just want to complete it  I’m really proud of myself for getting the SWAP done on time. I am going to do it again this year. I’m calling my plan the Tops SWAP because it’s pretty much all about bodice work and making items fit my D cup chest as though they were designed for it.

3. Take another sewing or fashion class/workshop I took a serger workshop at The Sewing Studio here in Toronto. I really enjoyed it and Iwas excited to learn that they’re opening a branch in New York. Another reason to finally make it to New York someday.

4. Fix that coat and create 3 items for my husband Yeah, this just didn’t happen. If I really wanted to push it, I could count the vest I made for his Hallowe’en costume as an item but I don’t think it really counts.  This goes back on the list for 2011.

5.  Wear only clothes I have created for a week (excluding foundation garments) – this will get me building my handmade wardrobe Sadly, this didn’t happen either. I need more tops, hence the Tops SWAP

6. Finish the crosstitch – it’s not exactly sewing but it is stitches and I’ve had it FOREVER. If I finish it, I will be so excited. I have declared a truce with this crosstitch. I picked it up over the summer and realized that not only did I not like the poem I’m supposed to embroider on it eventually, I had also lost the counted pattern and had no idea what the end product was really supposed to look like. I am going to put this away for now and stop worrying about it.

So, the main lesson of the last year seems to be that I either need to sew less or make sewing more of a priority so that I can be better and more efficient at it.

Personally, I prefer the second approach so I’m going to try to do that.

Here are my 2011 sewing goals

  1. Get my sewing area organized.  Now that we know we’re staying where we are for awhile, I can work at making the space work better for all of the functions it needs to serve: sewing room, office area, guest room, kitty litter space.

  3. Finish the Tops SWAP – ideally on time. I’m a combination of excited and scared for this SWAP. I generally avoid sewing tops because they take so much more time as I need to work harder to fit them. This is the year.
  4. Make 3 items for my husband. I really want this to happen. I may need to expand my skill set to make things he likes though.
  5. Finish the Trench Sew Along. It’s all cut out but it needs to be put together.
  6. Take a sewing course/workshop. I love learning more about garment construction and fashion. Sometimes I wish I’d studied it in school instead of what I did study.
  7. Make Hallowe’en costumes. We’ll either try to improve the Steampunk or try something else but I really want to do costumes again this year.

That’s the plan for this year. Let’s see how it goes.

All the best to you and your new year!