Monday, January 2, 2012

2012: A Year Of Making

Happy New Year everyone! I hope you saw in the new year in suitable fashion, and are full of optimism and a positive outlook for the year ahead.

As to me? Well, my resolutions are of course the same every year: eat less, exercise more, spend less, work more. Last January my sister set out a handmaking schedule for the year, and it worked out pretty well for her, so I've decided to do something similar. I've organised my huge sewing list into a monthly schedule, so it'll give me trackable goals instead of a vague nebulous cloud of ideas which leaves me in a muddle of indecisiveness over which project to start next. I'm challenging myself to complete at least one sewing project a month. Since I generally manage to sew approximately three dresses a year, this is quite a step up.

I'll update this list with my progress (and probably more projects as I think of them!) as the year goes on. Wish me luck!

  • 1940s frock in the Liberty wool-cotton blend pansy fabric I bought last year. Completed!
  • Finish the tan plaid pencil skirt I started in 2010 (!). Completed!
  • Make do and mend: re-hem at least three of the skirts and dresses that are sitting in my mending pile. Done!
  • Start work on a repro fabric to be called "Poolside". Completed!
  • Study millinery from 1944 book "How to Make and Trim Your Own Hats". Studied!

  • Carefree Valentine Dress Completed!
  • Make Do and Mend: Adjust the waistband on one skirt from the mending pile.
  • Make Do and Mend: Darn my two holey sweaters.
  • Make a hat by reblocking an old one.
  • Create another co-ordinating design for the Ballroom Belles fabric range. Completed!

  • The Little Rock Dress Completed!
  • Place spoonflower order for Clotheshanger, Hattie, Ballroom Belles and Poolside fabrics. Yes, this year I'm finally going to make stuff with my repros! ordered Ballroom Belles fabric - the rest will have to wait til I'm richer
  • Make Do and Mend: Adjust the waist size of cherry petticoat. Done!
  • Make a hat from straw braid.

  • Sailor dress in blue linen [finished pattern drafting and started muslin!]
  • Bonus project: a second sailor dress in a different colour - ever since my sailor style evolution series I've loved the idea of a non-blue sailor frock.
  • Make a nautical accessory. [started!]
  • Make Do and Mend: Refashion damaged 1930s black dress.

  • Fruity 50s sundress Completed!
  • Sundress in my repro clotheshanger chevron fabric. [postponed until next year]
  • Bonus project: Jubilee dress Completed!

  • Ballroom Belles 1940s tea dress. Completed!
  • Playsuit - in Poolside fabric. [postponed until next year!]

  • Start circle skirt - I had so many ideas when I made my London Calling skirt (which I wear a lot) for Casey's sew along a few months ago that I have another three planned! Finished!
  • Start my first quilt [started planning]

  • 1950s sundress in my "Hattie" repro fabric. [postponed until next year]
  • Start second circle skirt [started planning]

  • Dominoes & Daisies tea dress [picked a pattern and started muslin]
  • Pencil skirt in black and white mini houndstooth check fabric. Completed!
  • Make do and Mend project.

  • Cape Completed!
  • Silk blouse [finished!]
  • Late 30s tea dress in cotton-silk mix fabric purchased last year
  • Swirl-esque wrap dress. [started... and stalled]
  • Make do and Mend project
  • Pinstripe pencil skirt (part of the Gentlemen Prefer Blondes project) [purchased fabric]
  • Coral pencil skirt Completed!

  • Red 40s skirt [nearly finished!]
  • Christmas dress finished!
  • Something in tartan - circle skirt?
  • Make do and Mend project


  1. all sounds great, looking forward to it!

  2. Wow that is a lot! Nice to know what we're going to see revealed. Fascinating projects.
    Charlotte I have a hat dilemma that I suspect you can solve. I've just made a 1940's hat, the kind that sits on the back of the head with a heart shaped brim visible from the front. It's adorable but I have no idea how these things were kept in place. I put a comb in the top of the crown but it doesn't feel at all secure. I have hat elastic but am not sure where to place it if it is the answer. Can you help please? Many thanks!

  3. What a great way to organise yourself...may have to try something like this in the future. And it looks/sounds like a super exciting lineup too!

  4. Breaking it down month by month like that is a great idea. I'm not sure I could plan that far ahead though! Maybe I'd find six months more manageable. But I'm certainly looking forward to seeing your projects unfold, especially the Liberty pansy dress. That fabric is close to my heart as I used it in a tana lawn (in a very similar colourway to yours) for the very first vintage dress I ever made for myself. I still have some of it left which I'm holding onto for another project some day!

  5. Thank you Charlotte for the hat pin tip over on my blog! It is so obvious really hehehe. I kept thinking they are a really old thing that went out before the WW2 but of course that doesn't account for the huge quantities of hatpins in circulation - they would be very rare by now. So thanks I will go dig mine out :)

  6. Great idea to plan out your projects, I'm going to focus on one garment at a time (knitting or sewing) and "fill in the gaps" of my wardrobe. X

  7. Looks like you're going to be busy. Looking forward to read your posts in the coming year... Happy New Year!

  8. Wow you're going to be busy. Good luck!

  9. Wow, lovely list.
    Can't wait to see the outcome^^

  10. You are brave to plan so far ahead. I know I'd be side-tracked by March!

  11. I don't know how I missed this post! What a brilliant idea. I may have to steal it. :) I sewed an appalling lack of wearable clothes last year, and I too wanted to sew at least one garment a month (in my resolution list). January's half over! Eek.


I'd love to hear your thoughts!


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