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Interviews

New Year’s sewing resolutions 2019

 

HAPPY NEW YEAR! I hope that you’ve had a relaxing holiday and if you are back at work this week, that it wasn’t too painful! The start of the year is a great time to make new sewing plans and to inspire you for 2019 we’ve been chatting to bloggers and designers in our sewing community to find out what their New Year’s sewing resolutions are. It’s time to dust off that sewing machine and start making for 2019..

 

 

 


 

Jen – Ginger Thread Girl

“Being a working mum has been such a challenge in 2018, that it has meant I have had such little time and energy for sewing. I  don’t think there is any real way around this (other than winning the lottery!), but I would like to sew more cute kidswear for my little boy, Otis. I have only just started making things for him and I am discovering the joy of making for someone other than myself. The miniature children’s clothes also have the benefit of being quick-sew (yay!). So here’s to a happy, healthy 2019, filled with a shed load of sewing time please! ”

 

Tilly – Tilly and the Buttons

“My 2019 sewing resolution is… to do some sewing! Sewing for fun, not just for work. With a business, a cheeky toddler and a new house to sort out (boxes still everrrrywhere), I don’t get more than a few minutes at a time to sew for myself. However, this is no excuse – whenever I make the effort to sit down at my sewing table, no matter how tired I am and no matter how short the sewing session, I always feel better afterwards. Quick and easy projects are the way forward at the moment!”

 

Heather – Closet Case Patterns

“This year I hosted a Sew Frosting challenge with Kelli of True Bias and I was SO inspired by what everyone made. I am hoping 2019 is a year FILLED with frosting. I have created a thoughtful, well-curated wardrobe but lately I’ve been missing the excitement that comes from wearing really bold, statement pieces. Rather than making lots of things, I want to focus on sewing a few very special, high-quality garments. I am taking a couture class with Susan Khalje, and Couture Frosting feels like a good moniker for the coming year!”

 

Photo credit: Alexa Mazzarello

Helen and Caroline – Love to Sew Podcast

Helen:

“I can already feel that 2019 is going to be a big year for me and for Helen’s Closet Patterns! I will be hiring my first employee early in the new year and that will surely be a game changer. I have plans to expand my size range, release at least 4 new patterns, and continue to sew, blog, and explore my creative passions. Last year I learned how to knit and I am fully addicted! One of my goals this year is to knit my first sweater. ”

Caroline:

“Having just moved Blackbird Fabrics into a new space, I am excited to see what 2019 brings as we settle in. I’m excited to open our doors to the local sewing community through workshops and classes this spring. My main goal for the business is to grow my team and structure things in such a way that I can take more time for myself (that elusive balance!) One of my personal goals this year is to carve out more sewing time. I am currently thinking about my #2019makenine and I can’t wait to dive in!”

Podcast:

“We already have so many amazing guests lined up for 2019 and we cannot wait to share more interviews and sewing discussions with the community. We also hope to continue promoting sewing small business through our sponsorship opportunities and develop some fun podcast swag! Another podcasting trip is also in our future. We went to Stratford, Montreal, and Brooklyn in 2018, and we hope to continue our travels and have some fun podcast meet-ups with you all!”

 

Frances – The Maker’s Atelier

“I love experimenting and learning new things to do with sewing but since starting The Maker’s Atelier magazine this has been taken to a whole new level. In the last year I’ve conquered my fear of sewing silk velvet thanks to Claire Tyler but also my horror of hand stitching bought on by a bullying needlework teacher at school. Thanks to Tom of Holland, I’ve finally learnt to darn and been so inspired by his Visible Mending Programme. I’ve realised hand stitching is as unique as handwriting, so I’ve resolved to do more of it and develop my hand stitched style in 2019.”

 

Elisalex – By Hand London

“1. RED. One of my favourite colours to wear, but oddly the colour I sew the least. Having realised this disconnect between what I’m sewing and what I gravitate towards when getting dressed, I think I’ve finally tapped into the one major gap in my handmade wardrobe.

2. In my endless quest to find a happy medium between cocktail party attire and layabout slob in a bid to make everyday dressing more fun and polished, I think that the way forward is to embrace a more experimental approach to styling. Cajzhing down my more dressy-uppy dresses, zhuzhing up my relaxed ‘mum-iform’ and trying out new outfit combinations may be the key to having more fun with my wardrobe and discovering some new looks along the way.

3. Rediscovering my pattern stash. The other day I took out my boxes of vintage patterns looking for something for a friend, and I couldn’t believe how many gems I had forgotten about! I’ve already earmarked five that I want to make, like, yesterday, so my plan for 2019 is to focus on working through some of the patterns that are responsible for having gotten me excited about sewing in the first place.”

Saara and Laura – Named Clothing

“This year has been one of the craziest since we started Named – we have been working on our very first sewing book Breaking the Pattern, which was released just last month. Getting the chance to make a book with patterns and instructions for 20 garments was exciting and amazing in so many ways! We are incredibly thankful for that chance, and also happy and proud of the result. Even though work doesn’t really feel like work when it’s that much fun, it is still work, so our resolution for next year is simple – to try to take it a bit easier, focus on the joy of sewing and enjoying not only work but freetime too. And selfish sewing! Sewing something just for ourselves, which we rarely have the time for nowadays <3

Happy New Year from Saara & Laura of Named!”

 

Christine – Christine Haynes Patterns

“I spent the first part of 2018, absolutely sure that I would release more patterns this year, only to discover that the muse never really hit me. I instead filled my year with traveling, experiencing New York, and spending my time doing non-sewing related activities for the first time in a very long time. I nearly threw in the towel with patternmaking this year, but have found so much inspiration in my new-ish home of New York, that new patterns are planned after all! The website and blog are on hiatus while I redesign everything, but I will be back in 2019 with new sewing patterns. Yay! For my personal crafting, I did sew some bras this year, and as expected I upped my knitting game. But I mostly gave myself a real break this year, which was long overdue!”

 

Sarai, Haley, Taylor – Colette Patterns

“2018 was a good year for sewing. I feel like I broke free from a nearly two-year-long sewing rut. And I made a good mix of things I needed and things I just plain wanted. I think this is mainly in part to getting my act together and setting up my home sewing space. In 2019 I want to ride that wave of good sewing vibes and focus on really organizing my sewing space and of course my stash. I feel energized by inspiring spaces, and I want to create a happy little sewing corner that encourages me to steal away from my busy life—if only for 20 minutes— to make something pretty. ” – Haley, Designer

“My resolution for 2019 is to break my sewing into smaller chunks! I tend to sew in big weekend-long marathons, which can be a little exhausting. I’d like to take a few days a week to spend a half hour just doing simple things like cutting, or working on a part of a project for a short time. I love the idea of sewing or cutting as a creative break and moment of quiet in my day.” – Sarai, CEO

“I’m honestly the worst with resolutions. I’m always way too ambitious and tend to fall off by the end of February. 2018 was a challenging year for my sewing, I had a lot of sewing “fails” and I felt less joy when I sat down at my machine. So, for my resolution I want to focus more on the joy of purely sewing. I want to focus more of my efforts on items rather than clothing (less fitting involved ;p). I want to make a quilt, or a bag, or make those everyday life things like napkins or pillows. I’m going to be easy on myself and not even plan them yet, but make it a goal that I check in on them every month to see what I feel like making so it can still be organic and not pushy.” -Taylor, Art Director

 

Charlotte – English Girl at Home

“After a year of being swamped with work in 2017, I threw myself back into the sewing community during 2018; I took part in online challenges, attended meet-ups, and got back into more regular blogging and vlogging. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and want to continue to make the most of this brilliant community during 2019.

Cataloguing my fabric using the Cora App is helping me to sew from stash, and to stick to my sewing plans – even if it takes me a year or two to get around to a pattern. I’m going to spend the first days of 2019 cataloguing what I want to sew – but not when, to keep the pressure to a minimum.

I’m also looking forward to making time for other creative hobbies. I’ve received embroidery kits for Christmas which I’m determined to complete, I’m booking a week-long weaving course in the Autumn, and I’m planning to get the natural dye pots out (but possibly not until the weather warms up).”

 

Fiona – Diary of a Chainstitcher

“Next year I’d really like to find a balance between making careful choices and sewing for the pure joy of it. Over the last couple of years I’ve been restricting myself to sewing practical garments which are necessary additions to my wardrobe. More recently I’ve been thinking about the sustainability of my sewing too. But at the same time I want to remember that sewing is my hobby and that I sew because I enjoy the process rather than purely as a means to clothe myself. There is still room for the odd frivolous project and to be spontaneously inspired by a gorgeous piece of fabric or intriguing new pattern! My sewing time is precious and I want to spend it sewing things I’m really excited about.”

 

Kristiann – Victory Patterns

“2018 was a year of slowing down and taking time for healing. I realized that as much as I love to say yes to things, sometimes “no” is the most powerful word. It can make room for other good things, and it allows me to put my energy where it should be. So 2018 is a year for being really conscious of what I say yes to, and what I let into my life and business. I also really want to be intentional about taking time for self-care and personal projects, and also, to learn something new, like German!

Two projects I’m most excited about is my wedding dress, and a dress shirt for my fiancé to wear on the big day! I’ve always wanted to make my wedding dress, so I’m dreaming it up now. I’ll be making his shirt out of a beautiful vintage Venetian linen tablecloth. I know that might sound weird, but trust me, it’s going to be awesome! I can’t wait to get cracking on them!”

Barbara – Rocking Stitch

“Is it super boring to say that I hope that the New Year will be like an extended version of 2018? I’ve had a pretty eventful (sewing) year to say the least and I just don’t want it to end! I became a mom in January, I went to many sewing meet ups and made lots of new friends (#sewingfriendsarethebest!), I started freelancing in the sewing industry, I launched a YouTube channel with two of my pals and I recently opened my own Etsy shop.

For me, being happy and being busy go hand in hand, but that also means that it’s easy to forget to take care of myself. So in 2019 I want to take a step back to move forward. I want to focus on breathing, calming down and very importantly; discover slow stitching and mindful sewing!”

 

Kathy – Sew Dainty

“Whilst handmade dresses are my true love, I notice that I am often reaching for separates in the colder months. So in 2019 I plan on sewing more tops, skirts and trousers – particularly in plain fabrics so that they will work with my existing pattern-heavy handmade wardrobe. I recently made the Persephone Pants, only my second pair of handmade trousers, and expect to make lots more of these, as I am crazy about them!

During December my Aunt taught me how to knit, and will definitely be trying to improve and learn more about this new exciting hobby. I would also like to use up some of my fabric scraps and take up EPP quilting – both of these are portable crafts and mean I can spend more time with the family and less time tucked away in my sewing space.

Finally,  I fully intend to change my machine needles more often. There I’ve said it – I have to do it now!

Happy New Year xx”

 

Ana – CocoWawa Crafts

“My sewing resolutions this year would be first, for me personally, to slow down and enjoy more the process. Sometimes I get carried away by fabrics and patterns and what others are making and tend to rush, which sometimes lead to using my trusty friend the unpicker way too often, hehe. I want to also take some time to enjoy other crafts as well like knitting – I am learning a lot lately and devoting quite of my free time to it whenever I can – or embroidery, which I also enjoy. At the same time, I would like to spend more time with sewing friends, meeting for a good chat or maybe some knitting. Regarding CocoWawa, I just want to be able to keep on releasing patterns that people would love to sew over and over again and that would make them happy. I have four designs that will be hopefully released along the year and of course I want to keep on teaching as many kids as I can to sew! It is such a rewarding experience and this year I will be working in 3 different places in London so really looking forward to some fun sewing with them : )”.

 

Marie-Emilienne – I AM Patterns

“Dear fellow sewers, 

This year, I am thankful for the wonderful community that you are. You’ve been amazing on so many levels. Also, I have seen so many amazing creations with our patterns, thank you all 🙂 I wish for 2019 that you will continue to enjoy sewing our patterns. In 2019, let’s continue to have fun together 😉

For myself, I am happy to tell you that once again, I have reached my goal to sew all my clothes, and aimed for a minimalist and ethical wardrobe. Yeah !!! That was really challenging as I feel I now have less and less time for myself.

For my brand, I AM patterns, I didn’t create any clothes for men and children as I planned to in 2018. But this is now coming in Spring 2019. It didn’t happen for a good reason: I moved from Paris to Burgundy. Yes, the famous French wine region 🙂  And I set up pattern-making classes there too. In 2019, I will finish to renovate an old barn and set-up an amazing b&b experience where you will be able to rest, discover Burgundy, it’s wines, it’s easy going lifestyle and to sew of course. It will all be furnish with a sewing studio. Stay tuned, in 2019 we will meet soon I hope 😉

I wish all of you a Happy New Year.”

 

Lisa – Sew Over It

“I realised this year that sewing brings me a lot of happiness – at least it does when I’m sewing for pleasure, rather than speed-stitching samples for work. I had forgotten how much joy it can bring me, which is funny as my love for sewing is the reason why Sew Over It came to be in the first place. With moving house recently and lots going on workwise, proper me-time sewing has been missing in my life for past few months, and I need it back! So I’m planning on remembering that making time for sewing is important to me. To keep my mind away from work, I’d love to try out some other pattern companies this year. I’m not sure which yet, so I think The Fold Line’s pattern database will be getting a good workout from me!”

 

Nina – Nina Lee Patterns

“2019 will see all sorts of exciting happenings for me as I kick it off with two new patterns in January, plan our June wedding, move into a coworking space and work on my passion project, The Career Girl. I’m particularly relishing the thought of getting out of the house to an office as it gives me an excuse to dress up more – and sew some more glamorous outfits! I want my me-made garments to have a dash more flamboyance than they’ve seen these past few years – bolder colours and more dramatic silhouettes. Although some of these grand sewing plans might just have to stay on the backburner whilst I sew my wedding dress!”

 

Sue – Susan Young Sewing

“I rarely set myself New Year resolutions because I think they’re generally of the media-induced ‘lose weight/have face lift/get rich quick’ variety which aren’t exactly helpful or realistic. Sewing resolutions for 2019, however, are another matter. I had to think hard about this actually because I’ve been veryfortunate to have sewn virtually all my life and I’ve sewn quite a lot of clothes in that time so there aren’t many things left garment-wise that I’d like to try and that I’d actually be that interested in sewing. When it comes to making I’d be curious to try a leather bag or shoes at some point perhaps? I’ve seen a few people make some stunning handbags over the last year, and shoes of all types as well. Handling very different materials could be very interesting. Three years ago I embarked on a 10 week tailoring course at Morley College in London to learn new skills and thoroughly enjoyed it. Hmm, need to look into this more I think…

Another area that I’d love to see flourish in 2019 is my involvement in ‘SewOver50’. When I wrote a couple of slightly disgruntled blog posts back in early August I NEVER expected that they would strike such a cord with so many people. It seems I’m definitely not the only slightly older dressmaker who was feeling more than a little cheesed off about being ignored or overlooked by pattern companies and magazines. The Instagram account started by @judithrosalind has gained over 5000 followers in just 4 MONTHS at time of writing this and I think anyone overlooking that market would be quite foolish. I really dislike the expression but the ‘grey ££’ is there and waiting to be tapped into. Not only that, we have a huge wealth of expertise which we’re only too delighted to share with less experienced dressmakers. SewOver50 isn’t exclusively for the over 50s to belong to though, the hashtag is a source of huge inspiration and encouragement to anyone, wherever you are in the world. Go and have a look @sewover50

The final sewing goal I have for early next year is to develop a dress pattern that I’ve drafted myself and which is in the early stages of development with just one sample made so far. Once I’ve tweaked and tested it some more I’d like to learn exactly how to take it from being a pattern paper drafted on spot-and-cross paper and turn it into a PDF, with all the accompanying instructions. I’m a dressmaker not a IT person so this is going to be a real challenge for me! I know there are tons of individuals rushing to put patterns out there so I want it to be something original that I think people would be interested in and which is appealing and well-produced. Any advice on this one gratefully received, it could take all year!!

Thank you to Kate and Rachel for asking me to contribute my 2019 sewing resolutions, let’s see how many of them I can achieve. Thank you to them for getting behind SewOver50 too, without platforms like The Foldline it might have withered on the vine instead of going from strength to strength. Happy New Year, Sue”

 

Portia – Makery

“2018 has been a tough year all round and one that has seen my health and my energy crash; and my personal sewing has crashed alongside it. My body has changed too as a result and I haven’t entirely come to terms with it. (Honestly, I’ve spent most of 2018 hiding myself away, lol!) I’ve come to realise that my motivation to sew for myself is very much linked to how good I feel about myself. When I feel good I sew myself something nice and feel even better! When I feel like crap I neither have the energy to start, or view everything I sew in a negative light and therefore see no point in even attempting to start. Like I’m “wasting” my precious energy & my “best” fabric on something that isn’t going to make me look or feel any better.  Gosh that sounds depressing, lol! But objectively I find it interesting. That relationship with sewing and how for many of us it’s intimately linked with our emotions. I think I’d like to spend 2019 changing my attitude to sewing. Rather than seeing it as something I do when I feel good and energised and happy in my skin; see it instead as a form of self care. Lavishing time, and care on myself as a kind of act of self love. Countering the negative self talk (I know I’m not the only one) and reminding myself that this body still deserves the time and care and attention it always did. If anything, while it’s recovering, even more of it. And more than ever it still deserves my best fabric.  Flowers bloom when we lavish them with care and attention. Our souls are no different. It’s ironic that at the very time when we might need our sewing the most, we feel the least motivated to do it. 2019 is the year that maybe I need to remind myself that sewing is something that feeds my soul. That it’s ok not to be ok. That sewing as an act of self love, not merely a means of acquiring clothes. Here’s to 2019 and draping ourselves in our best fabrics. Because we are totally worth it. Especially when we feel we are not.”

 

“The end of 2018 had a few big changes for me – I’ve gotten rid of the pink hair, turned 30, moved house… The last thing has been a big excuse to have a huge wardrobe clear out which has really shown me what I do/ don’t wear out of my handmade wardrobe. I think that’s going to really help guide my makes in 2019 so that they’re more thoughtful and considered rather than sewn on a whim!

I’m also planning out a new sewing space in my new flat so my main resolution is to keep it tidy! (Anyone who knows me knows that’s practically impossible but here’s to hoping!).

It’s going to be an exciting year!”

 

Gabby – Gabberdashery

‘This year my main focus will be most likely be sewing for my first baby due in April and I’m so excited to make all the little things for them like clothes, blankets and maybe even toys! For me I will probably we mainly making cosy loose fitting clothes and working on samples for my upcoming pattern releases in 2019!!’

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