2015 behind the sewing machine


2015 did not turn into the mega sewing year I originally intended. What with travelling the world, changing job and moving house, there was very little room for quality time with the sewing machine. Especially during the entire month that all my sewing kit spent in moving boxes!

While the move itself was extremely stressful, I was entirely unprepared for how difficult the next few months of settling in would be. Both Chris and I fell in love with our new house so completely (and were so stunned that we were lucky enough to be able to afford it), that it never occurred to me that feeling truly at home might take a little longer. Especially as the current decoration is so dated and opposite to our taste that it sometimes feels as though we’ve snuck into a stranger’s house and started setting up our furniture! But a little break over Christmas has given us lots of time to plan and think, and we have a massive list of projects planned for 2016, many of which might even make it onto this blog, so watch out.

Anyway, back to sewing, and the few projects I managed to get round to in the past year have massively increased my confidence as a sewer. I tackled my first, and second button-up shirts, which was a serious milestone in my head. I love slinging on a white shirt in the morning, and being able to churn them out at will is pretty exciting. I only wish the cutting out wasn’t so dull! And that my cuffs were a little less scrappy.

I also had some fun with stripes, creating two of my favourite casual dresses. I still hate stripe matching with the burning passion of a thousand suns, but I’d definitely work with these fabrics again.DSC_0550_edit-2I tried my hand at patternmaking this year, taking a class at Central St Martins over the summer that I have so far failed to blog about in any significant detail. I have drafted one garment of my own from scratch so far, a pair of culottes, that I was incredibly proud of to begin with until I actually tried to wear them. Oops! Two lessons learned here: 1) do not neglect finishing touches like waistbands during the pattern drafting, and 2) always make a toile you damned fool. One day I will learn.

One of my favourite sewing books of the year was the Merchant and Mills Workbook. Basically what would happen if someone took my personality and distilled it into a bible of sewing beautifulness. And it looks like you guys agreed – my most popular post of 2015 was my little review, accompanied by my blue serge wool Strides trousers. My love for this book spilled over on to YouTube, and I posted this little video review back in July (I look so tanned!), along with another favourite make of 2015, the Saltmarsh skirt.

At the start of 2015 I made a pledge to make more videos. In fact I intended to make two per month! Well, that didn’t work out quite like I planned, but I have definitely got the video bug. My favourite from the past year is this short little beauty depicting a day in the sewing room, which I had great fun filming on a rainy bank holiday.

My little sewing diary has come a long way in the past year, and during its short life has definitely grown beyond its original mission statement. I am still a dressmaking addict, have no fear, and I have a big pile of patterns ready to work on in the new year. Having a semi-functional sewing space that isn’t all in moving boxes definitely helps. Which also means that before too long I’ll be ready to film another sewing room tour video… looking forward to that!

But I can’t ignore the house-sized elephant in the room. Namely, the House. As I mentioned earlier, a lot of my planning and obsessing and creating has been, and will be taken up by this demanding pile of bricks and mortar, which needs a lot of love and a full makeover from head to toe. 2016 will be the year of the House, and that will undoubtedly spill over onto Song of the Stitch in the form of DIYs, musings on interiors, maybe even some furniture restorations, woodworking and gardening(!!!).

I hope you all had wonderful Christmases, that the New Year treats you with joy and excitement, and I will see you in 2016!

Striped Coco Dress | Song of the Stitch

What do you think?