Tuesday, January 1, 2013

2012: Year in Review

I hope that everyone has had a wonderful New Year celebration. 2012 was an excellent year around here, and I have high hopes for 2013!

I did a lot of crafting in 2012. I sewed 162 items! That's pretty awesome, particularly since I tackled a few major, time intensive projects, so it wasn't all just easy and quick sewing. I sewed up 215 yards of fabric. That sounds like it should have put a dent in my stash, but I bought 382 yards. Eeep. I think it's time for a bit of a fabric fast.

I've really been enjoying the Top 5 lists that have been floating around the interwebs, so here is my version.

My Top 5 individual makes are:
1) Simplicity 3503 maxi dress. I wore this dress all summer long. It is comfortable, cute and easy to wear. Total win.
2) My Image Cardigan. This has been one of my go to toppers when it's chilly out. It goes with pretty much every single thing in my wardrobe.
3) Simplicity 2256 jacket. This was my first hand tailored jacket. I wear it all the time. It is cozy and seriously classy.
4) Vogue 8601 jacket. Another fabulous jacket that goes with everything. I get constant unsolicitations when I wear this.
5) Tanit-Isis 50s shrug in mohair knit. Cuddly and soft, this one gets compliments everywhere I go as well.

While I am generally not a TNT sewist (call it crafting ADD) I actually sewed a lot of repeats this year, and each of them belonged on the top 5 list, so I made a separate Top 5 Patterns of 2012 list, just for them. Here they are:
1) Sewaholic Renfrew
I've made it three times so far and I love each and every one. It is a rare week indeed in which I do not wear at least one of these tops. I love this pattern so much.
2) Vogue 1027/Tiramisu
OK, that's 2 patterns, but they are similar. These dresses are absolutely the darlings of my closet. They are insanely comfortable and yet, I feel instantly "dressed" when I wear them. I love that they are truly go everywhere dresses. I have worn them to church, weddings, grocery shopping, playdates, real dates - you name it, this dress works.
3) Vogue 8330
I love these jeans so much that I have literally worn out the black and blue pairs. The red pair is still in my closet in heavy rotation. I'll be making these again in 2013.
4) Vogue 1059
On the other end of the pant spectrum, these wide leg trousers are amazing. I love wearing them. The skinnies are nice and trendy, but I feel classic and elegant when I wear these. And I do wear them. Nearly every day.
5) Vogue 8747
While I am generally a knit top wearer, every closet needs a nice blouse or two, and I really like this one. The shape and general style are very classic, but the shaped neckline and bust gathers give it a nice oomph. This basic gets worn a lot.

So, that was the good of 2012, but every sewist has a few duds. Here are my Top 5 Fails of 2012;
1) Elastic Waist Maxi. I think this was a good idea, but poor execution. The waistband is a little big and the hemline is a bit long, so I'm just not comfortable in it. It will likely get refashioned, as I like the fabric.
2) New Look 6082. I just don't think these were a good look for me. Audrey Hepburn I am not. They have already been donated.
3) My Image Long Cardigan. The leopard cardigan from this same pattern made my Top 5 wins list, but this longer one just really isn't my style. I don't hate it and wear it occasionally, but it always feels a little contrived. Perhaps I should cut it short and see if I like it better.
4) Vogue 1050. I really like this pattern, but these pants were just a smidge too tight and the fabric I used had zero give. They've been donated, but I want to try the pattern again in the spring.
5) Ottobre Woman blouse. Due to wacky pattern drafting, this one fits strangely. It's fine for layering, but I don't wear it alone.

At the end of 2011, I made a few goals that I also wanted to review:
1) Make a tailored coat and jacket. This one is actually already in progress. The coat is cut out and the tailoring has begun. For the jacket, I am planning to pull out one of my SISC projects and make Vogue 8601.
Done! I made both of the jackets referred to in my goal! Since they have been worn so much, I'm definitely planning more jackets for the coming year, and I'd also like to make an actual coat as well.

2) Complete (yes, complete!) my SISC projects. Believe it or not, I have actually already made 4 of them, but I seem to have stalled. The coat in progress will be SISC #5, and then I will get back on track with them.
Hmm, didn't quite manage this one, although I did get very close. The only projects I didn't complete were the Colette Ceylon and Vogue 8543. I definitely want to make both of these this year. The Vogue pattern is a suit, so that means a jacket to tailor! Yay!

3) Keep better track of my fabric ins and outs, with the goal of sewing more fabric than I buy. I have been keeping track of what I sew, but not of what is coming in. I'd like to actually sew up some of this beautiful fabric that is filling my sewing room!
Done! Sort of. I've been very good about maintaining my sewing spreadsheet, which includes my fabric ins and outs. The other part of the goal, not so good. So, for 2013 here is my goal. I will NOT buy more fabric in any given month if I have not sewn up at least that much yardage the month before. That means my fabric budget for January is 11 yards, since that I what I sewed up in December. Hopefully, that will keep me net negative for the year.

4) Sew an LBD. This goal has been on the books for 3 years now. I think the time has come...
Done! I made Burda 7189 as part of my Fall Wardrobe. It is a great versatile piece that I wear fairly often. Win!

5) Knit socks. I have conquered sweaters, mittens, gloves, scarves, hats and cowls. It's time for socks.
Also done! I knit a pair of socks to learn on, and then proceeded to start a real pair out of sock yarn. Unfortunately, I just couldn't get interested in these socks. They have been frogged and sock making if off my to do list.

I think for 2013, I'm going to forgo goal-making. I'm going to sew what I want, and what my family needs and just enjoy the process of creating and learning. Here's to 2013, y'all! I hope it is a wonderful, productive and creative year for you. Thank you for following along and cheering along my creative process. I appreciate each one of you who comes by and reads this old blog. Thank you, my friends!


  1. I have the same goal this year- my husband pointed out that sewing was my creative outlet,so why make it task oriented- smarty-pants husband! I think I'll try it..once I leave the Jungle of course.

  2. 162 items! Wow. Good luck with your 2013 approach. Happy New Year.

  3. You have been so busy, great job on the garments. Happy New Year.

  4. Fantastic garments! I love them! You are definitely an inspiration for me. I can see Utah agrees with you! Happy New Year!!

  5. I am absolutely gobsmacked by all that you sewed this year. WOW!!! What a great year. Happy new year!

  6. Love that houndstooth jacket. I forgot it until you showed it again--my favorite.
    I want a vogue 8747.

  7. Even if the cardigan didn't turn out how you like the hat is awesome. Do you have a top five of the things you knitted? Those things are just as fabulous! Your output is astonishing. And so many pretty things!

  8. Very productive year. I decided not to sew with deadlines this year. I find the older I get the less I like deadlines. So only going to sew what I want when I want for 2013. I would be afraid to find out how much fabric is in my house. I have been trying hard not to buy more but it's so hard not to buy.

  9. Wow 162 items!! That is awesome! You had yourself a pretty good year!

  10. My last fabric buy scared me, because it is currently sitting under my desk. I've already sewn up 4 pieces totalling 10 yards, but there's another 20 yards staring at me. I wish I could keep track and make year end summaries, but I'm awful about even month-end summaries. And I've been just awful at blogging about anything of late. But I do stop by to see what you've been doing, even if I don't comment. Happy New Year, Katie!

  11. Lots of sewing considering the major transitions you've had this year! It keeps you sane, right (:
    I also failed in my goal to sew more fabric than I bought in 2012. Here's to 2013!