During the original lockdown, I really struggled and although I wanted to take part in the #StayHomeAndSew movement, it was more #StayHomeAndStress on my end. When this year started, it had been a while since I had sewn for myself; not for a project or a video, but just for the joy of sewing. Last year I tried to sew but I only really used one pattern because I had made it a hundred times before and I had it down to about 2 and a half hours by the end. It was the pattern I reached for when I felt like I should sew for some much needed self care, but I was just going through the motions. When this year started, I saw many Instagram videos where people shared all the stunning outfits they made throughout the year and I so badly wanted to share my own but they were just not that great so I figured, this would be the year I returned to sewing and make some lovely new things. That’s exactly what I did and finally, I can share with you all the things I made in 2022.
January … we’re off to a great start and I made nothing but this is when my whole realisation came about that I wanted to sew. In February I finally sat down in front of my machine and I made a Katy Keene inspired Valentines day dress using Gertie’s L’Amour dress pattern. It was my first time using boning and horsehair braid which I absolutely loved learning how to do.
Full blog here.
March was when I really revved up and gave my machine a work out like it’s never seen before. I made a total of 9 garments. The first dress I made was Butterick 6284 using a super cute bee fabric which I adore. This is such an underrated pattern so I’m so glad I could make it again. Full blog here.
My second dress was a modern pattern, McCalls 7950 which I loved but wanted to adjust slightly for next time. I did revisit this pattern later in the year as I fell in love with the different variations. Full blog here.
My next pattern was a bit of a notorious vintage pattern, Butterick 5708 which is known for it’s odd bust fitting. It turned out pretty good and I loved my fabric choice. Full blog here.
My fourth garment for the month was a pattern I had made many years a go but my lack of knowledge and skills, and basic fabric knowledge, let me down so it was time to try again. Butterick 5209, the redemption, turned out much better and I really enjoyed being more confident in my sewing and producing a garment that won’t end up in the donation bin a month later. Full blog here.
My next make was a dress where I wanted to use some of my Polish fabric to embrace my heritage in light of everything happening in Europe at the time. I decided on pattern Butterick 6556 / Simplicity 9294 as I could wear it with a drindle top and make it look like a cute country peasant girl dress. I loved it. Full blog here.
Now, let’s tackle that project that’s been in our “finish this later” pile for many years! For me, it was Butterick 6322 and I had cut out the pieces way back in 2016 so this was the year she would finally get sewn. She was a challenge and I have mixed feelings about the outcome but I finally finished her. Full blog here.
My seventh pattern for the month, was Simplicity 8873. I thought it would be great to match a Gertie pattern with Gertie fabric and I loved how it turned out. Although summer was ending and I should have been making warmer garments, this was one I was so happy with. Full blog here.
Of course, March was also the month I embarked on my first attempt at a historical garment and inspired by the release of season two of Bridgerton, I made a Bridgerton inspired regency dress using Butterick 6074. Full blog here.
The last dress for March was my first ever true vintage pattern, Simplicity 8398 from 1951. I am still in love with the slashed shoulders on this dress but not overly keen on the bows anymore … time to unpick them I think. Full blog here.
April made me keen to start on my Easter dress which is exactly what I started with. I wanted something beautiful and special for my Easter dress and I ended up making a Liz dress from Gertie’s Charm Pattern as it’s a pattern I attempted for easter 2 years ago but it came out too small. With a quick size adjustment it came out perfect and I loved my fabric choice. Full blog here.
My next April sew was another vintage sewing pattern, McCalls 5142 from 1959. This was a challenging pattern but completely worth it for the final result. I love that I was able to use up some fabric from my stash that I had had since 2017; just look at those bold blue roses! Full blog here.
My third dress for the month was inspired by some fabric I found in my stash which featured some beautiful embroidery all over and an intricate border pattern. I decided to try out a modern pattern and went with Butterick 5982 and I think this was my biggest goof of the month. The bust was the wrong size so my dress bodice has awkward dart nipples and I have added this pattern to my “must try again later” pile. Full blog here.
To redeem myself, I decided to try out Retro Butterick 6175 which featured some beautiful gathered sleeves and a very full skirt. I love my fabric having a combination of gingham and tiny strawberries scattered all over it. Full blog here.
This dress is probably my favourite make of the year so far. I absolutely fell in love with the fabric and still now look back and fall in love with it over and over. To really drive home to retro florals, I oped to try out a Simplicity X Lisette pattern, 1419 and made my own dress by combining different dress features such as a collar and sleeves. I love this dress and love this fabric. Full blog here.
With so many new patterns being tested, I wanted to go back to an old faithful; Butterick 6453. This Gertie pattern has a bit of a cult following and you can see why from the simple princess seamed bodice, adjustable shoulder straps and full skirt. I paired it with some cute retro tea pot fabric and it’s perfect for summer. Full blog here.
I wanted to challenge myself as the month drew to a close and I decided to tackle a project I had been slowly working on for years. I had always wanted to make my own Betty Draper unicorn dress so with a “let’s see what happens” attitude, I create a really good first attempt. I have had this fabric in mind for this specific project when I originally bought it in a Malaysian market back in 2016 and I was happy to finally get this project out of my head and into reality. Full blog here.
My final make for April was a remake of McCalls 7950 but with a designer inspired twist. I loved making this pattern so much, I had to make it again so I used some Italian graphic tile print fabric and came up with my own Dolce and Gabbana inspired dress for literally a tiny fraction of the original inspirations cost. Full blog here.
I was on a roll, nothing could stop me now; and then I landed in hospital. I was forced to take a few weeks break so I only made a few things in May which I was disappointed in but I do love what I managed to make. I started with Butterick 6318 in a vintage rose print as it’s probably the easiest pattern I have. This was a great way to get back into sewing and this is the quickest pattern I’ve whipped up making it great when I wasn’t feeling well. Full blog here.
During May, I started a few projects but couldn’t sit up for long periods of time so many projects were put aside or abandoned completely. There’s one project in particular that really bothered me due to a terrible fabric choice but I liked the pattern so I made it in a different fabric. Pattern Simplicity X Cynthia Rowley 1873 was slightly altered to make it more suited to my vintage style but I’m so glad I didn’t give up on this pattern and I used a sweet autumnal themed fabric. Full blog here.
Moving along right to June, I was feeling better so it was back to sewing a bit more. As much as I wanted to sew up a storm I had to keep an eye on my health so I took it really easy and made three dresses. The first was Butterick 5605 which was the dress with the million gussets and a very cute bow detailing on the back. I used a fair amount of some Cotton and Steel Rifle Paper Co Wonderland fabric which had been sitting in my stash for the longest time. Full blog here.
My second sewing project for June was a stunning vintage pinafore pattern, Style Print 1028. I’ve been wanting to sew more pinafores so I figured there’s no time like the present and I found some cute tartan on sale and it came together beautifully. I really hope to sew a few more pinafores next year. Full blog here.
My final sew for June was a redo of Butterick 5982 but in a summery floral print. Making this pattern earlier in the year, I wasn’t happy with the outcome of the bodice especially around the bust darts as they were awkwardly saggy and sad so I had to try them again by changing the cup size. I still wasn’t 100% sold on this pattern but I love this print and wish I could get more. Full blog here.
In July, I decided to finally use some of my grandmother’s vintage ribbons which I inherited a few years ago after a box was found in an attic. I found vintage pattern Simplicity 4343 from 1963 which had some great space for ribbon detailing and it was a match made in heaven especially after finding some cute pink gingham. This is one of my favourite makes of the year and I want to make a blue and yellow version next year. Full blog here.
I spent the rest of July hunting for a few patterns, finding inspiration and by the time August rolled around, I had the perfect sewing project in mind. I actually found the fabric first and it wasn’t until July rolled around that I found the newly revised vintage pattern, Simplicity R11333 or 9464 (don’t ask me why it has 2 codes). The pattern envelope had fabric that was spookily similar to one of the dresses so I knew it would be the perfect fit and after a few adjustments (adding much more skirt and ruffle), it was a dreamy dress. Full blog here.
September was a strange month, I made things but the main one was a fail which I will continue to tinker on in the new year. For a local pageant I made a tear away skirt to suit a stupid cupid theme and I learnt how to use Wonder Under which is a skill I’m very excited to use in future projects.
At the very end of September, we got some news about some massive life changes so we had to take a very impromptu honeymoon which means, I had a day and a half to sew everything I planned to wear. I started with Butterick 6682 which is a pattern I wish I used sooner because it was so quick and easy to put together. I used some scrap fabric from a past failed project and I had just enough to make it work; the dress was fun to wear in the Maldives. Full blog here.
The final thing I was able to make for September was a modern pattern I found in an op-shop, New Look 6508. I wanted to keep using fabric from my stash and although I had nothing tropical, I found a very cute vintage inspired toy elephant print cotton which worked perfectly. The only issue I had was I forgot to sew on the final hook and eye closure before I left for the Maldives so the back didn’t do up all the way. Full blog here.
Heading straight into spooky season, I started October by making a cute Halloween inspired dress using a pattern I had tested out earlier in the year that I was obsessed with, Simplicity 1419. I went with the peep-hole bodice option with a cute black collar to match some sweet Halloween coloured tartan like fabric. Full details here.
The final make of October was my first attempt at making some pyjamas using the vintage pattern Vogue 5725 using some very cute pumpkin fabric. Making this pyjama set definitely made me want to make more vintage pyjamas in the future and I’ll definitely be making more in the future and for holidays because it’s so cute. Full blog here.
I’m going to get real and say that I had so many sewing plans for November and December but unfortunately I got very sick and had a fair amount of travel to do. This meant that I honestly ran out of time and had not more energy or strength left. There were honestly weeks at a time where I did nothing but sleep and living on my own for the next little while meant I couldn’t look after myself really well. I’m a little sad that I couldn’t finish the year on the big bang I planned but all the rest and recovery was necessary and my sewing list for 2023 is already ridiculously full and ambitious. In saying that, I made 30 dresses in 2022! 30! Oh my gosh that’s insane and I need a bigger wardrobe.
If you have been following my sewing adventures during 2022, I’d like to say a huge thank you for your support and encouragement. It’s honestly made me fall in love with sewing all over again and I hope to keep making you smile, inspiring you to start sewing yourself and mourning the loss of fabric.com. I hope to have a new sewing post very soon in the new year and I cannot wait to hear your thoughts.
Note: This is not a sponsored post. All opinions and thoughts expressed are solely my own and not influenced in any way. There are no affiliate links and I do not benefit from any link clicks or purchases made.