Sunday, 13 January 2013

And here's to 2013!

OK, well I'm just a tad late joining the "this is what I've done and this is what I will do" group, but I've decided to write something, mainly for my own benefit. Well this blog is a diary of my sewing (and other stuff) over the past year and diaries are records of what happened and so... (Why am I making excuses to you all..?)

2012 was an interesting year to say the least! In the middle of January we moved from the UK to New Zealand! Having lived all our lives in the UK and moving 12,000 miles (OK, I should now be saying 18,000 Km - I'm still getting used to Ks and not miles!) was NOT a small step. We took the opportunity on the way here to visit friends in the States, so we took in Las Vegas, Boulder, CO and San Francisco on the way. How very different three US cities can be!

We both have jobs and we've lived in two different places since we've been here. We also got married last year! We've started to have fun discovering a whole new country, going over to the Wairarapa and Martinborough vineyards last Easter and Taupo this last New Year. And best of all we've met some fantastic people, many of whom are already beginning to be really good friends who we can ask for help/rely on. Mr N and I have joined the local golf club and they've been really friendly and helpful. I've found a choir to join which I love singing with, who also have an amazing programme lined up for the year ahead. I've got some great work colleagues. And possibly more important for me I've also found some great sewing bloggers who I've met up with and plan to continue meeting up with.

For the first few months, I was without a sewing machine, then was lent one from a girl in choir until my own arrived having made it's own long journey by container from the UK. Then I obviously need to change the plug! :-) So my makes for 2012 were (in no particular order)...

A Thai Voilet - Colette patterns Voilet blouse. This hasn't had as much wear as I thought, possible because the elastic at the ends of the sleeves is not the most comfortable. A cuff would be nicer.
A hen night dress - McCalls 6505. Since I'm so greedy I've had two hen nights and worn this to both :-)

Wedding party dress - Vogue 8020. Finished just in time for my after wedding party. It's only been worn the once, but I'm determined it's going to be worn again soon!

A spotty Vogue - Vogue 8789. I love this dress and yes it has been worn a number of times, only I have to be careful living in windy Wellington! :-)

The Hearts dress - Simplicity 2588. This is my second version of this dress and certainly gets loads of wear. It's great that it's not an obviously summery dress, so I can wear it with boots, etc. I love it!

 A spring circle - my first self-drafted circle skirt. This has become another staple in my wardrobe (as long as it's not too windy).

A $5 Vogue - Vogue 8789 again. Made from a thrifted sheet. A bargain and certainly a staple in the wardrobe.

So not too bad considering! I also managed to make two pairs of curtains for our house. A travelling spice holder (yes, honestly) and a passport for Mr N's important Ted in the form of a scarf with a silver fern embroidered on it! :-)

I also resurrected my knitting skills making a snood and a scarf (this I've never blogged about).

So for 2013, I have plans... I'm determined to try to clear some of my stash (famous last words!) I've already spent an evening going through my fabrics and pairing them up with patterns. I'm currently in the middle of making a blouse. I've another blouse that's sort of been conveniently forgotten, since I've gone off it since starting it (don't you hate it when that happens?) I've a Colette beignet skirt cut out and ready to go. I've also got a self-drafted pencil skirt which I started before we left the UK and never got finished. I am determined to finish this one, since I still like the fabric and a pencil skirt is so useful here!

These four I really ought to finish first, but my head is already going round with other ideas and having been through the stash it's really spinning :-) I need to check out my concert dress. I've put on weight since I made it and it's just a wee bit tight for me. Still wearable, but not really ideal for taking large breaths to sing with :-) I have some fabric which I'm hoping will make a wearable muslin for the Colette Anise. I've never made a coat before so this will be a new one for me. I'm determined to try to make some trousers, but this for some reason I'm scared about doing! Having seen many of the comments on Karen's Sewalutions, methinks I'm not the only one! Not that my name is in the jar (I was away and didn't get a comment typed up...) I've also got some lovely merino to make something with, which will be a challenge as I've hardly made anything out of knit fabric (and I don't have a serger/overlocker).

Other ideas include a bathrobe - this should be relatively easy, apart from I'd like it in cotton waffle fabric, which seems to be virtually impossible to get hold of. I'd also like to make a skirt which is suitable for golf. Yes, I mean it. Why should I spend about $100 or £50  or more on a skirt, when I'm sure I can make one for less? Most I've seen in the shops have lycra cycling shorts underneath with a stretch cotton skirt on top. I'm also determined to make more separates. I have a lot of dresses, which I love, but separates would be much more useful. Finally, I've accepted a challenge by Mr N to make him a shirt or two... He's brave!

I'm also determined to take a bit more time and make the finish better, using French seams, etc, instead of just reaching for the pinking shears.

Methinks I'll be busy! How am I going to fit all this in? At the moment, I've not a clue, but we'll give it a go! I could do with a couple of days a month off work, so I can just sit at home here and sew! That would be a dream, but it's not going to happen, I need my leave for a trip to Queenstown, another trip back to the UK, a concert in Auckland, my brother-in-law's wedding in China - phew! I'm getting worn out thinking about all this, but excited by the plans I've got.

I'll obviously also continue to sing, play golf, work full-time, read all your blogs and try to comment on them :-D I've never been one for sitting doing nothing :-)


  1. I hadn't realised your move to NZ was so recent! I'm pleased to be part of your group of blogging friends and look forward to meet ups and seeing what you make.

    1. Yep, still definitely a newbie, but am really glad to have met up with you all already, so methinks the feeling is neutral :-)

  2. Gosh, that's an impressive list for 2013! Yay!!

    Do you want to borrow my overlocker for a week so you can sew up that merino? We're going to Dunedin for a few days in early Feb and sadly I can't take it with me, so it'll be lonely and looking for someone to hang out with. Available from 6-13 February. :-)

    1. Mm, that's very tempting, not that I'd know what to do with it! Will let you know! That's really v generous.

  3. Wow, lots of goals here! It was great to meet up with you.. it sounds like you've had a very busy year. I love how smiley you are in all your photos, and you've made so much cool stuff!
    I loved seeing your bedsheet dress, and I guess you've inspired me... I'm making a bedsheet dress right now! :D

    Oh and sewing knits on a sewing machine isn't hard. I just use a ballpoint needle and the smallest zig zag possible... you don't even need to finish the seams, it's great!

    Good luck with your goals! :)

    1. Ooh, can't wait to see your bedsheet dress! It's been great meeting you and we shall again! Your knitting is really inspiring me to pick up my needles again, but... Do I really have the time?

  4. WOW you are going to be busy this year! And last year too - I still remember your transportable spice rack, that was what got me hooked on your blog (true story!).
    Looking forward to seeing all of your makes!

    1. Ha ha, all it took was a travelling spice rack! Mind you, it meant I've found your blog and met up with you, so I'm happy :-) Can't wait to see my gypsy makes too!