I have been sewing for just over a year now and up until recently, my sewing time has consisted of seeing a pattern I like, finding a fabric and sewing (then eat, sleep, drink tea, repeat!) There was no organisation, no planning just "oohh shiny - I want it!"
However nice it is to sew on a whim and whenever I see something I like, it comes with it's vast flaws. Mostly, the time. Sewing this way can be so sloooooow. You have to trace the pattern, make a toile, make your alterations and then finally comes the real sewing!
There is also the added gripe of making an item and then having nothing to wear it with immediately. For example, sewing a skirt in some fancy fabric you found and realising you have no tops to match! D'oh!
As we're coming to the end of the summer here in the UK (well, not that we really had a summer!) it felt fitting to make a plan of action for my Autumn/ Winter sewing. One thing you might have already noticed about me is that I only wear dresses. The occasional skirt will make its way into my wardrobe every now and again (but again - I have no tops to wear them with!) I feel good in a dress so that's what I wear - rain or shine! I don't really have 'winter' and 'summer' dresses either. If it's cold I'll pair said dress with a cardigan and thick black tights. However, this does often mean I end up inappropriately dressed for things. I live on the coast and it gets windy in winter. Swishy dresses are not really appropriate attire if I want to keep my dignity... I'm also often cold. I hate the cold. I'm starting to wonder why I do this to myself...
In an effort to dress more appropriately for the weather, and also to be more productive and organised with my sewing I have come up with an Autumn/ Winter 'to sew' list.
I'm going to pause here and reflect on my personal style - I'm a fit and flare dress kinda gal. I like a tightly fitting bodice with a full skirt. Pair that with a cardy or a sweater and I'm good to go! I tend to lean towards a more vintage style too. I love a good collar (especially under a nice jumper!) and I have come to find a love of knit dresses (again in the same fit and flare style) as they are great for when I'm in a rush or I just feel like having a comfy day.
So, with all that in mind here are the short listed projects:
The Skater dress - Simple Sew pattern
I have made Bettine in a lovely summery daisy print cotton lawn and I LOVE it. It's such a great staple dress and can be made in woven or jersey fabrics (Head on over to Tilly's blog to find out how to adapt the pattern for jersey!). As I have already made this before I've already done most of the hard work and I know it fits! Yey! I'm aiming to make a couple of these for Autumn/ Winter in a chambray and a nice jersey patterned fabric for the ultimate in comfort!
Coco - Tilly and the Buttons
Again, this is a pattern that I tried and tested before. It's an easy sew and also an easy wear. It's probably one of the most comfortable dresses I own so it's on the list! I have some wonderful quilted knit fabric for this already. I also want to make a striped version. I've never sewn with stripes as I've always been a bit too nervous of the pattern matching but it's time I tried and just did it!
Dahlia - Colette Patterns
Dahlia looks to be a great all year round dress and I have wanted to make this pretty much since the pattern came out. For some reason or another I have never gotten round to it. A couple of months ago I went to Ditto fabrics in Brighton and picked up some really nice ex-designer fabrics with the intention of finally making this dress. Now's the time!
8930 - Vogue Patterns
I picked this baby up for a whopping 50p at the charity shop recently and I just LOVE it! I'm not sure how it will turn out, whether it will fit or whether it will suit me but I definitely want to try this out. It's a loose fitting, slightly a-line knee length dress with an elasticated waistband and it will work with knit fabric (just perfect for winter and a Christmas pigging out session! Score!)
Special Occasion dress- Kim, By Hand London
In October one of my friends from University is getting married (yey!). I've been looking around all summer for the perfect dress to make for such an occasion. I had a few things in mind but recently saw the Kim dress pattern from By Hand London and knew it would be perfect! I'm planning to make variation 1 which is not my usual style but it looks so beautiful and different that I'm going to give it a go. Now to find the perfect fabric to go with it!
Astoria - Colette Patterns
This is one of the free patterns that came with my subscription to Seamwork magazine (a monthly online magazine run by the team at Colette Patterns) and I have wanted to make this (and other free patterns) since it's release. The only thing stopping here is the lack of a printer as it's a pdf - gah! As soon as I find one this baby will be printed off!
The wish list
The above will be keeping me busy for quite a while but hopefully there are some things in this list that I'll get around to:
The Watson jacket - Papercut Patterns
How beautiful is this jacket? I saw this pattern some time ago (when I was far too much of a novice to even attempt this!) but it recently resurfaced on my instagram feed and I thought 'I think I'm ready for that challenge' so let's try and give it a go! This will have to wait until my selfless sewing (aka the Albion jacket for the boyfriend) is finished first though. I won't hear the end of it if I make myself a jacket!
Moneta - Colette Patterns
This dress suits my style perfectly and will be great to just pull on when I want to be comfortable and I'm in a rush. Plus I have recently just started branching out to knit/ jersey fabrics and it will be great to add to the skill set.
Brumby skirt - Megan Nielsen
Denim is not really a fabric that I wear but recently I've been getting a hankering for it. I'm definitely not a jeans person (not yet anyway) so I thought maybe I'll try a denim skirt. This skirt pattern looks perfect for me - it's not a traditional denim skirt with all those straight lines but instead it has a great flare to it. However, if I make this I will have to find some top patterns to go with! TBC...
Cambie dress - Sewaholic
Again, this dress completely suits my style. I think this pattern is fairly old on the blogosphere but it's a new discovery for me. As much as I love this dress though I'm thinking this should be on the back burner as it's way more spring/ summer friendly (but hey, I'm always inappropriately dressed for things!) but if I get down the list...