Saturday, 31 December 2016

Year in Review 2016

Wow, does time ever fly when you're having fun in the sewing room!  It's been another wonderful year of sewing and I feel like I accomplished a lot even though I'm not a prolific sewer.

 The highlight of 2016 was without a doubt my brand new Bernina 580.  This is my dream sewing machine that I've wanted for a while.  I'm still loving it.  It's beautiful to work with and beautiful to look at too!

So what did I actually sew in 2016?  Let's see.
I started the year off with my ridiculously girly Vintage Apron.    I really enjoyed working on this.

The pattern had some unique details which were not only interesting but beneficial to add to my sewing repertoire.

Of course,  I also did some knitting and quilting this year.

Needle turn appliqué
I didn't complete a quilt or a cardigan.  But I did complete some mittens!  Here are my Songbird mittens.
I also squeezed in my La Joie du Printemps mittens this year.    

 I made two summer shirt dresses (McCall's 6696) and I learned a lot about fitting with these.  

I discovered that doing a sway back adjustment eliminates vertical excess and makes for a lot less poofing.  I really enjoyed fitting this dress despite my frustration fitting the collar to my gaping neckline adjustment.

Then I dived into my biggest challenge which will be a tremendous sewing accomplishment if I succeed; drafting and fitting a pants sloper.  I've always been frustrated by pants and the lack of a good fit.  Now I'm ready for the challenge.

Overall, it's been a pretty good year of sewing.  I did a bit more knitting than usual.  I find knitting stranded mittens doesn't hurt my wrist as much as knitting sweaters, so those mittens were fun.  I certainly did not sew as many garments as I would like but the garments I did sew were excellent quality, and I learned a lot from them.  However, I think next year I'd like to sew more garments.  So I better get going!

Thanks for reading my blog!  Many well wishes from my sewing room to yours!
Happy New Year!

Tuesday, 27 December 2016

La Joie du Printemps Mittens

Ironically, I completed my La Joie du Printemps mittens around the winter solstice, and spring seems a far-flung memory.  Nevertheless, it is a gorgeous knitting pattern, and it was a lot of fun to knit.  It's knit at a denser gauge than my Songbird mittens, so they're a bit more impermeable to wind.
We just had a blizzard yesterday, so it was fun to photograph these on fresh snow banks.

I used Jamieson & Smith 2 ply Jumper Weight wool which is a lovely Shetland yarn traditionally used for fair isle work.  I decided on a bright magenta with bright white contrast for a cheery design.  I have the complete collection of Jamieson & Smith shade cards because I like to see the colours in person before I order.  So it's fun to look at different combinations on the cards for colourwork.

 I used yarn colour 52 which is a bright magenta.  It sometimes appears red in photos, but you can see how it compares to 93 and 1403.

I really enjoyed making these mittens.  It's fun to see the design emerge.  I also find that knitting colour work is not painful on my wrist like other knitting is.  So it's a bonus for me!

 Well, these mittens will definitely keep my fingers toasty this winter.

If you're having a cold winter too, stay warm, and I wish you a cozy season.  If you're having balmy or summer weather well then lucky you!

Thanks for reading my blog and
Happy Knitting!

Thursday, 8 December 2016

Winter Sewing Ideas

There's no denying that winter is here.  Sewing summer dresses is no longer satisfying if I can't wear them now.  So,  I've officially shifted to winter sewing mode.  I quite enjoy winter sewing because there's no way I'd rather spend a cold wintry day than in my sewing room.  I probably accomplish a lot more in winter than I do in summer.

I decided to call them sewing ideas as opposed to sewing plans.  I guess I'm really focused on my pant sloper now and I don't want to commit to too many projects.  Nevertheless, I do have some awesome winter sewing ideas!

photo from

First of all, I would like to draft and sew a pair of fitted cigarette pants in a colourful cotton twill,  similar to the photo here.  I'm in the process of fitting my sloper right now.  I'll do a separate post all about it,  hopefully soon! (crossing fingers)  

I would also like to use my pant sloper to make a pair of dress pants or slacks, perhaps in a beautiful black wool crepe.  It would be so awesome to have a nice fitting pair.

I was also thinking of making this dress again in view C or D.  I love the way it fits, and I could always use a warm winter dress.  I would probably use a wool suiting fabric.  Something a bit less bulky than I used last time.

I've wanted to make Vogue 1513 for a while.  I even scoured the internet for the perfect fabric.  I couldn't find any wool crepe around here. I finally found some fabric I like from England.  So now I have to make it!

And, last but not least.  I could really use a new sweater dress!  I love McCall's 7430 with either the full length or 3/4 length sleeves because it would be so warm and cozy.  The only problem is finding the perfect knit.  I'll just have to keep searching.

So, there you have it.  I feel a bit better having put some of my scattered ideas down.  I'm on a roll with pant fitting right now.  It's a lot of trial and error but I am learning a lot, and I don't want to get distracted as I sometimes do.  Once I'm done with pants, I'll move on to dresses which are always fun.

I'll be back soon...
Happy Sewing!