Friday, December 30, 2016

Sewing Project Review 2016

2016 was a really weird year for me. Not a bad year, just a weird one. All year long I struggled with sewing. I either didn't have time to work on things or I lacked motivation. In some ways I felt overwhelmed since outfitting all the kids seemed like an impossible thing to do. I was irritated with most of my projects. But I kept on, bit by bit. And really, I am kinda amazed at how much I did get done. Hey! Not so bad. 

There were a few projects that stand out so for the sake of wrapping up this year, I will highlight those few:

1. My Favorite Project

This would have to be the Jedi outfit I made for Judah to wear for Halloween this year. I loved making this costume from start to finish and it gives me a happy feeling to see Judah throw his Jedi robe on after school, hop on his bike and head down the street to visit one of his friends, robe flowing in the wind. He totally owns the look. It was fun to work on something non-historical! 

2. Least Favorite Project

Well, all the undergarments. I made a crap ton of undergarments this year for both the kids and myself. It gets so entirely boring. Really! I mean, how excited can you get about the umpteenth tuck you are sewing into a white petticoat? I wasn't excited. Still, undergarments are the most important part of a correct looking impression. I still hate them. I don't want to sew another undergarment for a long time. Unless it's a corset. 

Sad thing is, the next thing I make will almost certainly be an undergarment! Grrr...

3. Most Challenging Project

Benjamin's yellow plaid dress was completely frustrating because it looked terrible when I first sewed it. I had to take it apart and redo the bodice and I hated that. I wasn't that passionate about it in the first place and I still kinda don't like the dress, but he did look cute in it, even if he did only get to wear it two or three times before he outgrew it. 

2017 projections: 
  • Cage crinoline (plan to start this in a few days)
  • 1870's undergarments (start in January)
  • 1917 outfit (will need everything. Plan to make a simple skirt/blouse/jacket ensemble)
  • 1870's day dress
  • 18th c. undergarments
  • Colored/printed regency round gown
  • Updating the kids reenacting wardrobes as needed
  • SOMETHING for SCA use!
See you in 2017!


  1. So about the 2017 projects: what part of 1870's are you aiming at (since the silhouette kind of changes within the midst of it)? More of an early-mid 1870's style?

    And same thing with the 18th century undergarments- for which years are they meant?

    I hope you'll be/feel productive this coming year! And seriously, you've been so amazingly productive all these years *with* children, it's very impressive, and also very helpful to have the things you've made as helps for my hopeful work later (your research, but also your take on the various things people have either made or that haven't been made much at all).

  2. Thanks! It's been hard to adapt to a different kind of lifestyle and a new normal as the years have passed and the kids have grown older and their needs and routines have changed.

    After looking at a lot of dresses, I think I do like the late 70's styles better than the earlier 70's, and like the early 80's even more. I found a dress from the early 1880's I think I'd like to try to recreate, or at least use as inspiration. It has a plain bodice, a skirt with modest ruffles and a simple draped overskirt.

    If I do get around to making 18th century stays they will be from the 1770's period, for Rev War. That's fairly low on the priority list right now but I hope to at least get a start this year. We'll see!

    1. Circa 1880 is a nice set of years for 'bustle' fashion (mainly, in my case, because I don't like the size of bustles later than that, and 'natural form' is nicely streamlined). I do have a certain fondness for early 1870's, but for very specific aspects of it. I suppose I'm just not as much into bustle fashions in general compared to, say, the 1830's to '50's. I like less froofy things, and though I know 1830's is supposed to be froofy, I like the basic shape so much that I must appreciate it.

      I look forward to seeing your foray into the bustle era!


Thank you for your lovely thoughts!