2016: New Year: New Skills

Happy New Year Friends!

I hope the new year brings you all health, happiness, peace and prosperity. And, of course, many great sewing successes.

Last year’s sewing was, overall, very good for me. I think it was a combination of just getting more adept at things like fitting and sewing trickier fabrics, and also being more realistic about sewing things that I really wear in my day to day life. I am not going to do a full review here, instead I would rather look forward to 2016, but here are some of the things which I have worn most often in the last year since being made (if you click on the photos they should take you to the individual reviews/ blog posts):

Khaki Waterproof Minoru Jacket
True Bias Sutton Blouse made from upcycled silk
Vogue 8952: Woven Silk Front Wool Jersey Top
McCalls 6291, 6991 and Butterick 5926: printed pants, crossover wrap top and ponte blazer
Butterick 6179: DIY White Linen Twill Culottes
New Look 6225: Floral Contrast Raglan Silk Tee
Muse Patterns Jenna Cardigan: DIY Sweater Knit Cardigan

As for 2016: I want to learn and master new skills. And I have made a start on that already. If you follow me on instagram you would have seen that over the last week I have been posting my progress on a wool blazer which I am hand tailoring. Here are a few snapshots so far – full details to follow.

Butterick 4610 hand tailored wool blazer
Butterick 4610 hand tailored wool blazer
Butterick 4610 hand tailored wool blazer

Needless to say this is a project which I am not rushing, but spending what time I can on it a day at a time. It has taken me just over a week to get to the stage you can see in the last picture. Already I feel so much more…empowered? Conquering the fear of sewing a  tailored garment with a notched lapel. Bring on the next challenge! (Well, of course, I still have a long way to go…)

If I have to summarise I hope 2016 will be about crafting beautiful, classic pieces which will have longevity in my wardrobe. Expect to see a few silk blouses because I enjoy wearing them 🙂 And some fun stuff thrown in too.

Until soon….




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By day I work in the exciting world of pharmaceutical regulatory affairs, registering medicines (!), but by night I turn in to a sewing diva, making all manner of clothes in my beautiful sewing space (which you can tour using the link at the top of this blog). I love how sewing and sewing clothes that fit my curvy body continually challenges me. I enjoy working with all different types of fabric, and whilst I don't like to put restrictions on myself and say I won't buy RTW, the truth is that I probably rarely do buy it, preferring the fit of my own me-made clothes. I love to use natural fibres where ever possible and colourful coats are an obsession of mine! Sewing is both my addiction and my therapy. You can contact me at sewmanju@yahoo.co.uk

9 thoughts on “2016: New Year: New Skills

  1. I think that outfit with the ponte blazer, crossover top and printed pants is one of my favorites of your year – gives off that effortless chic look and a great combo on you. As for your blazer tailoring, I have been interested to see your progress on IG. and while it is kind of fun to do – I learned that technique long ago, used it a few times and then never again 🙂 I find that using fusibles gives the same results. But it is great to learn the foundational techniques for tailoring. Can’t wait to see it. Happy New Year, Beth

    1. Thanks Beth. I think I will probably agree with you. I am actually really enjoying the hand tailoring, but I feel like I have to do it this way at least once so I understand the anatomy and sewing of the jacket. Before I go to fusibles. Does that make sense? But with the wool I have chosen it is going well.

  2. Wonderful stuff! I would like to expand my sewing knowledge this year as well. My first stop is perfecting pants. Maybe someday I’ll move on to a tailored jacket!

  3. What a smashing review of your year! You have really sewn some stunning outfits and they are so pretty and colourful. Makes me wonder what you will be doing in 2016! Congrats.

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