Happy New Year! And I really hope it does turn out to be much better than in 2020. I’ve never done one of these posts before, so I thought I would put that right and start 2021 off with a review of my sewing hits and misses from 2020. I felt like I wanted to share my thoughts about what I created last year so I hope you’ll oblige me by sitting down with a cuppa to read my musings.
So, even though I took two and a half up months off due to lockdown motivation slump I managed to complete 15 items. I know for some that might be a very modest amount and for others it might seem more than they might sew, but for me, I think it was just about right. I have a small wardrobe and I simply don’t need lots and lots of clothes. Plus I’m not the speediest of sewers and I always have a lot of family obligations with elderly parents.
My 2020 Makes (AKA sewing hits and misses):
On the photo collage from top row moving left to right is everything I made:
Row 1: Chunky knit cropped sweater. Leopard-print pants. Tartan jacket.
Row 2: Faux leather and knit top. Fibremood Norma blouse. Vikisews May Top.
Row 3: Dusky pink crops. Grey boyfriend blazer. Fibremood Ida.
Row 4: Grasser blouse, Leopard print coat, Puffed sleeve cardigan.
Row 5: Asymmetric hem skirt. Floral Ponte pants, Knitted midi skirt.
I want to do a quick review of each one and let you know my thoughts. Some you may be surprised with and others will be obvious.
Blue Chunky Knit
This sweater left me feeling very underwhelmed I realised it was impractical due to the heavy fabric combined with the short length and short sleeves. If it was supposed to be a warm Winter knit then longer sleeves would have been more practical, but I was short of fabric. I’m afraid I donated it to charity and don’t regret it one bit. (original post)
Leopard Skinny Pants
I like these and I wear them quite a bit. The fabric is lovely. There are some minor fit issues, especially with the crotch length but they are comfy and deserve a place in my wardrobe. (original post)
What can I say, I adore this jacket and it’s number one on my list. It will have to be pried from my dead hands…I will never, ever part with it, end of. (original post)
Faux leather and Knit Top
This is one of my fave Burda patterns and I’ve worn it a lot it’s definitely a winner. (original post)
I really like this blouse especially the fabric but I found the sleeves to be a bit too ‘sweet’ for me so I altered them into a more structured lantern shape…see here: I now love it and have worn it quite a bit. It’s great paired with my cream jeans and it’s a favourite make for sure. (original post)
Vikisews May Top
It’s super comfy and chic. Love it. (original post)
Dusky Pink Crops
I didn’t get to wear these much. Not sure why but they’re definitely keepers and I’ll wear them in the Spring. I struggle a bit to style a cropped wide-leg pant with coats and jackets so I think I’ll be only making this style for the warmer months from now on, however, I think I’m also starting to move away from this silhouette slightly. (original post)
Grey Boyfriend Blazer
This was part of an enjoyable collaboration with Clothspot and it’s definitely a keeper. It will be worn a lot more once the transitional weather hits in the early Spring. I love it paired with my silver sneakers and slim fit jeans or pants. (original post)
Whilst it maybe not the most flattering silhouette of tops in my wardrobe this was so great to wear in our early summer heatwave because it was so cool and breezy. I made it in textured cotton and have enough left for some shorts so It will end up a fun two-piece. I’ll definitely be keeping it to wear casually when hot weather hits. (original post)
Grasser Balloon Sleeved Blouse
I really love the colours in this fabric but I’m totally on the fence with this style for me, especially since body typing myself as a Dramatic Classic. I’m going to see how I feel about it paired with cream jeans in the Spring but also I wouldn’t be at all surprised if I end up cutting it up and creating something else with it instead. (original post)
Leopard Print Burda Coat
This is way up there on a par with my tartan jacket. I absolutely love it and I’m so glad I made it…Nuff said! (original post)
Puffed Sleeve Cardigan
This is a lovely casual make that I wear a lot a sure-fire winner. (original post)
Asymmetric Hem A-Line Skirt
I’m afraid that this went the same way as my blue cropped sweater and has already been donated. I guess I’ll just write it off as one of those things because I really, really felt totally wrong in it. (original post)
Floral Ponte Pants
These have one or two minor fit issues but I still love them a lot and I love the fabric I’ll definitely be wearing them. (original post)
Ribbed Knit Midi Skirt
My last make of the year (original post) and although it’s early days yet I really like the shape and fit of it. It also aligns with my Dramatic Classic style (mentioned here). I find it easier to style for sure.
Overall I think it was a successful year for my sewing despite all of the horrible goings-on in the world. I had a creative blip in the Summer but for the most part, I felt that my sewing kept me occupied and was good for my mental health.
I want to carry on into 2021 honing my personal style and being more thoughtful regarding the silhouettes and designs that I add to my wardrobe. I also need to take notice of my gut feelings about the things that I’m drawn to. I’m sure you’ll nod your head along with me when I say that it’s all too easy to be tempted to make things that we’ve seen other sewists wearing on Instagram or on blogs and the truth is that what looks right on someone else may not be quite right for us. I’ll try to be mindful about what’s right for me and yet still enjoy myself and have fun seeing what everybody else makes.
I think the Dramatic Classic style guidelines that I learned about recently when I delved into the Kibbe body-typing method seem to be a good fit for me and it’s made me feel a bit more able to spot what will and won’t work for me. In the meantime, I’ve started a Pinterest mood board with some DC style inspiration which I’ll keep reassessing and editing as I go along.
So that’s it…my first post of the New Year and on the whole, I’m feeling cautiously positive. I hope you have a healthy and happy 2021 and will follow along with me as we navigate whatever the year holds for us.
Thanks for reading, see you soon!
This post is a few years old, but I’m just finding it and love this rundown and your explanations for liking/disliking things. I’m a Natural Classic, but for more formal dresses I can lean into Dramatic Classic. And I feel you about that green short sleeve. I have one like it and it’s not the most flattering top I own, but boy is it comfortable. They’re very on trend, so its hard not to gravitate towards them. My favorites are the tartan blazer and the cream/white tank with the high neck. Hope you still have & like them!
I’m glad you enjoyed this post Jocellyn, thanks so much. I do indeed still have and love to wear the tartan blazer, the cream tank and also the green top (though the green top now has a small bleach stain so has been relegated to casual house wear. Also, I know I’ve mentioned before that I did the Kibbe questionnaire and thought I was a DC, I’m now wondering if maybe I only have the merest hint of dramatic in my style. Lately, I’ve been choosing slightly softer fabrications and more natural silhouettes…hmmm.
I’m also intrigued by the style category ‘Dramatic Classic’. If this is what you demonstrate, I’m all in!
Such a pleasant ‘non-preachy’ blog, it leaves me excited for your next post.
Thank you, Angela! So glad you’re enjoying my blog 🙂
PS…if you want to know where I came up with my Dramatic Classic style category, I talk about it in my inspiration post “5 Things Inspiring Me Now Part 7” (I added a link to the post too in the paragraph above where I’ve mentioned DC) There are some useful links to help categorise yourself if the idea appeals.
I meant more info on your Norma changes… Thanks.
Ah yes, of course. I haven’t included the Norma mods in a blog post but I did do a tutorial on my Instagram feed with full details and diagrams too. I’m afraid you’ll probably just have to scroll down my feed a bit. It was fairly recent I think. Hope it helps x
I thoroughly enjoyed your post! I’d missed a few garments / posts during the year. It is great to see your skills and preferences evolve! and your fabrics! You have thought provoking observations, and tend to find different patterns than I do. Thanks for the links back to posts.
It isn’t clear to me how you altered sleeves on the Fibremood Norma. I’m interested since that is a pattern I might get. And am more “Calvin Klein classic” than dramatic. Is there more info?
I do plan somewhat — now I’m upgrading my home and leisure wear, prompted by pending knee replacement surgery due to an old athletic injury. Today I’m starting a flannel Suki robe from Helen’s Closet. Modified of course. 😊
Thanks ever so much Heather! I enjoyed putting this post together and it was good to do a bit of analysis. Glad you enjoyed it.
I always look forward to reading your posts Diane. This one was SO satisfying – the round up of makes, the pondering re Kibbe “Dramatic Classic” which I’m completely unfamiliar with! I know Classic and Dramatic as 2 separate categories! “Soft Classic” or “Soft Dramatic” are also 2 that I’m familiar with (I’m Soft Dramatic) I hopped over to the Pinterest Board to get a sense of your Dramatic Classic and I see the more “Dramatic” on your board than Classic 🙂 I look forward to diving into this more! I’ve just landed on my own Kibbe body type and now am so excited to explore the “recommended” silhouettes for this body type 🙂 For years I’ve been banging around too many wrong silhouettes. I should have known because it was typical that if someone hadn’t seen me for a month or 2 they would ALWAYS say (including my own mother!), “You look great – have you lost weight?” I’d always joke that I must “loom large” in people’s retrospective minds! But I think it was shifting silhouettes that would cause that. Soft Dramatics can seem overweight (my weight hasn’t changed since I was a teenager – another oddity in light of what people often comment!) if they aren’t dressed to their best advantages. 2020 has been such a year of insight for me – it was my 65th year and the weirdest ever. Not terrible just weird 🙂 I wish you all the best into 2021 Diane and look forward to keeping up with your sewing and outfitting journey!
Thank you, Kathleen! I’m chuffed that you enjoyed reading my reviews. Glad you enjoyed browsing my DC Pinterest board too (maybe I did pin some looks with a touch more dramatic :), though the outfits definitely follow the style guidelines). You should try checking out http://www.theconceptwardrobe.com and type Kibbe into the search bar, where you’ll find some blog posts with great descriptions of all 13 body types. There are 3 classic types in all: Soft Classic, Classic and Dramatic Classic. Like yourself, I think I’ve been trying out quite a few different silhouettes these last 3 years or so and I reckon that if I work with just a couple that really suit me it should make putting outfits together a whole lot easier.
Thanks for following along on my blogging journey and wishing you a great 20121…and belated happy birthday too 🙂
Love your beautiful collection of makes. It is so helpful and inspiring to read your feedback not only on your sewing technique but the wearability of each garment. Your jackets and fit are exquisite. I can also identify with the story of your Tartan skirt which also looked lovely but that feeling of “it is not You” been there many times. Some lucky lady is strutting around getting compliments and telling the story that she scored at the Charity Shop. All the Best to You and Yours for a happier and healthy 2021.
Thanks for the lovely words, Pat. Yes, hopefully, someone is enjoying my style mistakes and showing them lots of love.
Happy New Year!
You are so right about mindful sewing – I made a shirt-waist dress in the spring. Loved it, it mimicked the picture on the pattern envelope. I imagined myself wearing it often. When I put it on my body, my 1960’s era grandmother was looking back at me from the mirror!😲 I don’t know how THAT happened!!!! So, yes, we must think about our bodies and what looks best on them as we design for ourselves.
This is a wonderful post, I enjoyed it and my cuppa! I’m glad to hear that you are thrilled with most of your makes. They are all lovely and inspiring. The fact that you give yourself permission to move things along to others if they don’t bring you happiness is something else I have embraced. No need to keep items that are less-than-success around. Someone else can love them.
Thank you for sharing your sewing journey with us. Best of everything to you and yours in this new year.
Ahhh, thank you so much, Karen! Your comment about your grandmother made me chuckle 🙂 Navigating personal style sure is a minefield. I’m pleased to hear that you don’t mind passing items along when they turn out unsuccessful…anyway, I think we learn so much from our mistakes.
All the best for 2021 xxx
Neat collection of beautiful makes! I absolutely love the leopard print coat, have been referring to your blog post on it to understand more about the interlining installation and how to add that beautiful decorative tape to the lining. While the tartan jacket I must have missed and will have to check out the blog post on it. Love it and the whole outfit you’ve matched the jacket to! Thanks for sharing your thoughts on choosing styles that fit us instead of trying to make something that fits other sewists. I think many of us have done that mistake!
Best wishes for 2021! 🌟 Hopefully it turns out more normal year than the previous has been!
Ohhh, thank you so much Giedre and for all your support xxx.
PS…There is a separate blog post about the decorative coloured insert along the lining edge 🙂
All the best for 2021!
Good roundup post. You make beautiful detailed clothes so that means quality over quantity. I started the year strong but then stopped sewing as there seemed no point. I took up walking and then running for my mental health. I did look up styles after reading your post and came up classic. Being older and heading into retirement in a few months I want to create a wardrobe of modern casual classics this year. Best wishes for 2021 🥂
Thank you, Vicki. Yes, to be honest, I’m happy if I can make one garment a month so anything over that is a bonus. I simply don’t like churning stuff out when I simply don’t need it(I don’t wear some of my wardrobe as it is…I’m a serial repeat wearer). Guess I’m a simple gal at heart.
It sounds like you got your priorities right last year by looking after mind and body. I’m sure you’ll love working through some great casual classics for 2021. All the best xx