A Belated Goodbye 2012, Hello 2013

By belated, I obviously mean veeery belated!  A year-end post when February is knocking at the door?  Ridiculous.  And yet, here I am writing just that.  Why?  Honestly, not so much for the round-up part (though I couldn't resist a little collage). Rather, I need help developing and maintaining focus when away from my machine so, I figured it would be smart to evaluate my achievements and goals and compile the sewing resolutions I've made thus far, in order to hold myself more accountable.

Ok, now that I've written that, isn't that exactly why each of you did it? In December?

Anyway, first things first.  Last year was off to a great start.  I had a tremendous amount of fun participating as a Sew Weekly contributor and it really helped me see just how much I could really accomplish when I stuck with a garment and held myself to a relative timetable.

By the time Brandon accepted his new job at the beginning of August (wherein chaos ensued), I had finished 19 20 items (including the petticoat under my houndstooth skirt and a grey lounge t-shirt not photographed) and made a few odds and ends (hair clips, bracelets, not shown).  Not too shabby, if I may say so.

Then, there are those that I started but, never finished for one reason or another:
  • The "Come Back to Me" Dress for the Oscar Challenge/That's Sew Cinematic - sooo much hand sewing but, I'm planning to work on it again this year.
  • The "Trudy" Dress for the Mad Men Challenges - horrible, beyond horrible fit. As I recall, I danced around actually saying this but, we used clothespins to grab several inches of fabric in the back to look ok for photos :/  I don't see this one getting fixed.  It left a bad taste.
  • The "Lilly" Dress for the City Challenge - this one took quite a few tweaks to get the fit right (straight shifts just don't work on my pear shape) and then I got distracted by other projects. I'll come back to this one.
  • A 1940s Spring Floral Top - I loooved where this one was going but, I had done quite a bit of grading and apparently screwed up the collar piece so, I need to go back and fix it.
  • The "Sheerly Jane" Dress for the Literature Challenge.  I was so excited about this one too but, by the time I dyed the fabric and got everything together, the in-laws came to visit and it went out the window. Maybe this year.
  • A white button-front shirt for Brandon's interview - I didn't finish it in time for his interview so, he bought one from Brooks Brothers and the stitching on that one was so smooth, I couldn't bring myself to finish the one I started (My machine, great as it is, doesn't have full adjustability so my stitches really sink into thick layers of fabric.)
  • A Gatsby-inspired grey lace sheath - again, by the time I dyed the fabric (twice!), other things got in the way.  This time it was the selling the house.
  • A J-crew inspired colorblock wool pleated skirt - another one I loooved but, I had sewn the pleats down inside-out and at 3am, I didn't fancy grabbing the seam-ripper.  Then, we left for GA to look for houses...
  • A simple gathered wool boucle skirt - a last-ditch effort to sew something quick and easy while managing the move.  Alas, the movers showed up before I could sew on the waistband and hem.  I expect I'll finish this one this year though.
Hmm, 9 UFOs (plus 2 for crochet) in one year... could be worse, right?

I learned a lot from my year's sewing efforts.  One thing I'm going to put into practice is my preferred pace.  One garment a week was fun but also very stressful.  This year, I plan to give myself two weeks per item.  Since I don't expect to sew until mid-February, that would give me a goal of about 23 garments this year.

Which brings me to my two (so far) resolutions:
To Karen, I pledged I would tackle items I find challenging to include one jacket/coat and one trouser/jean with zip-fly-front.
To Cindy, I pledged to use at least 8 of my stashed fabrics, including at least one which was bought for Brandon (after all, he does buy it so, it seems only fair, right?).

I'm going to expect the jacket/coat to take at least 3 times as long as a normal project and that green dress UFO is likely going to account for two so, my official, writing in stone (ha!) goal for 2013 is 20 garments.  Is it possible?  Absolutely!  Will it happen?  Only the year will tell!

How have your goals changed since last year?  Are you planning to tackle any larger/intimidating projects?  Please share!

Happy sewing! x


  1. Oh, I was hoping you'd do a 2012 roundup! I think you were one of my favorite Sew Weekly contributors and I was blown away by your striped Lady Mary dress. I hope you can get back to sewing soon...I look forward to seeing some new makes from you!

    1. Thank you, Cindy!! That's incredibly flattering, especially coming from one of my favorite bloggers! I do hope to be back at it within a month (yay!).

  2. You make such beautiful garments, well done! Can't wait to see this year's versions now that you're settled again!

  3. What gorgeous dresses you've made! I'm really looking forward to seeing what you make once you're settled in!

    1. Thanks, Sonya! I'm looking forward to your year of makes too. I'm especially anxious to see whatever comes of the fabric Oona chose!

  4. All your sewing is beautiful, I can't pick a favorite - That blue dress is divine!
    I can relate, so many plans and aspiration, then life hits, the Flu, Kids, Work, Holiday, and such. I must confess that I did better last year (2012) than the year before with my sewing goals. I don't make resolutions, I always break them :(. I've set one goal for 2013, resist buying new patterns - just got 3 last week :(.
    You'll do great in 2013 - we all will...

    1. Wow, thank you!!
      Yes, exactly! Doesn't life know we have sewing queues to attend to? haha I'm glad 2012 was a better year for year and hope 2013 is even better! I love your positive outlook!
      And not to worry - Resolutions are made to be broken (especially the limiting kind) ;)

  5. You've got some definite winners there :) When I tallied up my last years efforts I was surprised to see I managed on average a sewn item every fortnight or so - much more than I thought! So it would appear we sew at the same rate :) Here's to another year of fabulous handmade creations!

    1. Thanks, Melanie! You certainly had some stunning winners yourself last year!
      I think we've settled on a great, practical pace - fast enough to get through a fair number of items and slow enough to be able to pay attention to smaller details. It's great knowing I'm not the only one who sews at that rate!
      Hear hear!!

  6. Doesn't it feel good to do one of these posts? It reminds you of how much you did accomplish - and it's usually more than you remember! You've accomplished a lot this year, but I think taking a step back from the Sew Weekly and focussing on things that you really want to sew for yourself will leave you with less UFOs and more items that you are pleased with.

    1. It does! It's funny how easily we forget about what we actually did accomplish. I agree - I love the themes but, it will be nice to take things at a slower pace rather than reaching the end of the week and changing gears, finished or not.


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