Favourite Sewing Projects of 2015

With the festive season almost upon us, and the end of the year just around the corner; I thought it would be nice to look back on some of my favourite sewing projects of 2015. Included here is most, but not all of my personal sewing projects of 2015. I have tried to include projects that I blogged about, so the original blog post can also be viewed. Here they are listed in date order, from the beginning of the year to the present.

Feeling Lucky Blouse

I made this blouse to go with the lovely pinafore dress I won from Jitterbuggin back at the end of March. I felt the bright colours in the blouse would sit nicely with the burgundy shade of the pinafore, and it’s still a combination I wear today. I made the blouse from an original early 1940s pattern, and adapted the collar to a peter pan shape in a plain white cotton. Read the original post here.

Novelty Umbrella Print

At the end of last year and the beginning of this year; I seemed to go through a bit of a blouse-making phase. So I decided to shake things up a bit, and make a different style of top (although as you can see from below, I didn’t abandon making blouses entirely!) This little number was super-quick to make, and proved to be a firm favourite in the warmer months. Read the original post here.

Wonderland Liberty Blouse

As this year marked the 150 year anniversary of the publication of ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’; Liberty released a gorgeous range of fabrics to mark the occasion. Being a big fan of Alice, of course I had to own some of the fabric, the trouble was – which design? After agonizing over the decision for about 3 weeks, I finally decided on this ‘Gallymoggers’ print. As Liberty fabric is expensive, I only purchased one metre, just enough to make a blouse. Yes, I could have made a different style of top, but I just love the versatility of a blouse – the collar, the strong 1940s shoulders – totally up my street. This one is made from the same pattern as my Feeling Lucky blouse above (it’s kind of my go-to blouse pattern now). Read the original post here.

1930s Beach Pyjamas

I have to say, these were hands-down one of my absolute FAVOURITE makes of 2015. They feel so wonderful and light on, move brilliantly, yet retain a feeling of fabulous 1930s elegance. I made these a few days after I had most of my hair cut off, and for me these beach pyjamas will always represent a kind of style evolutionary shift for me. Read the original post here.

The Linden Lady Trousers

Continuing with the 1930s theme, I discovered the Boyer Sisters blog in the summertime, which then led me onto discovering this pattern for super-wide legged 1930s style trousers. I adapted the pattern slightly (which you can read all about in the original post).  I made this pair in a cotton twill, so they are hardwearing and retain a sense of structure when worn. I shall be making another pair at some point, perhaps in a slightly lighter weight fabric. We shall see!

Basic Little Navy Skirt

This is one of my more boring sewing projects, but I felt I had to include it here as it is an unsung star of my wardrobe! I made this skirt from an original 1938 sewing pattern, it features 3 panels at the front, but only 1 at the back (which contains darts for shaping). This skirt came into fruition, as one day I was looking through my wardrobe and realised that it would be really handy if I had a basic, plain, navy skirt. Surprisingly, this is not how I plan ANY of my sewing projects. I usually sew things on a whim induced by an eye-catching colour of fabric, and/or the acquisition of a new sewing pattern. But making things that I am lacking in my wardrobe is actually a better way to sew, and a better way of ‘padding out’ ones wardrobe. Expect to see more thoughtfully planned sewing projects here in the future!

Adventures in Stretch Fabric

Like many sewers, I found the idea of stretch jerseys a tad daunting.  But, driven by my desire to make this cardigan I decided to tackle this fear head-on. Pictured here is my second Jenna cardigan by Muse Patterns,  you can read all about my first version here.

More Adventures In Stretch Fabric

As you can see, towards the end of this year I went through a phase of ‘hey I can sew with knits so I’m going to make lots of things from stretch fabrics now’. This was my first – not counting the toile – Natalie dress (also by Muse Patterns). This dress pushed me out of my comfort zone, both in sewing and in my personal choice of style – stretch fabric was not something I previously wore a lot of. But, I’m so glad I made this dress. It is so comfortable, but also stylish to wear. I think I can officially say I am sold on knit fabrics now! Incidentally, I also won the Muse Loves Merino sewing contest in the dress category with this dress as my entry, so that’s a whole other reason to love this dress! Read the original post here.

Little Plaid Riding Hood

At the start of the month I decided to make a skirt to go with my lovely Antoinette shoes by Hotter Shoes (yes, I know that is a bit OTT, but that’s what happens when you can sew). I then decided that I needed another accessory to go with the skirt, so this hood was born! I have had this sewing pattern for a while, it’s actually a 1939 pattern for 3 varying types of bed jackets, 2 of which have this hood. I made the hood as a standalone accessory, so I adapted the pattern to make a collar and front tie to enable easy application to any outfit. View the original post here.

Sewing Plans for 2016

Gosh, I can barely believe it will be 2016 next year! Yikes. At the moment I do not have too many plans, as I mentioned earlier, I tend to sew things on a bit of a whim. But I do have a few goals I would like to fulfil:

  • Sewing Thoughtfully – Yes, I enjoy sewing things as and when the fancy takes me, when I find a gorgeous fabric, an exciting new pattern etc, but I want to start planning my sewing projects more carefully. In 2016 I want to regularly look at my wardrobe to assess what items I am missing, and concentrate on filling those gaps.
  • Using Up Fabric From My Stash – Recently, I have been trying to use up fabric from my stash rather than buying new fabric for every sewing project. Sometimes I buy fabric for specific projects in mind, but often I will buy fabric which catches my eye when I am out and about, inevitably leaving me with piles of pretty fabric unassigned to any particular project!
  • Using Patterns From My Stash – Similar to my fabric hoarding, I also seem to buy and stash away sewing patterns, many of which I have never made. I would like to go through them and figure out which ones I would like to make.

Those are my general sewing goals, but I do have some specific projects in mind for next year:

The Oolong dress by Colette Patterns. I feel this pattern would be perfect for creating 1930s style dresses, in many fabrics. I also think it would work well in stretch knit fabrics (there I go again!), just by altering the pattern to make it appropriate for knits. I can see this dress in a gorgeous medium-weight stretch velvet, with a matching belt and an original 1930s belt buckle. Swoon!

Similar to the above goal; I hope to make more dresses in 2016. This year, it seems I have only made 1 dress for myself. This may be due to the fact that I seemed to make lots of dresses for myself last year, so maybe on some subconscious level I thought I had enough dresses already. So, in 2016 I really want to make myself a few more dresses, I’m thinking my go-to swirl housedresses, and some early 1930s style afternoon dresses.

I would also like to make another pair of Linden Lady trousers, this time in a lighter weight fabric, more suitable for the summer months.

For the moment, that is the sum of my sewing goals, but I’m certain that by this time next year I will have lots of new sewing projects to show you all! Last week I actually finished my latest sewing project, which I am SO EXCITED to reveal, I just have to plan when/where is a good time to take blog photographs for the ensemble.

Anyway, this may be my last blog post before Christmas, and perhaps of 2015.. so I want to wish you all a wonderful festive season, filled with love and happiness. I also want to say a big thank you to you all for sticking with me and reading my blog in 2015, and here’s to an exciting 2016!

Until next time dears! xxx


10 thoughts on “Favourite Sewing Projects of 2015

  1. Porcelina says:

    You’ve been sewing up a storm! I’m so impressed with just how many projects you’ve managed to do, that’s a LOT of work, and they are all such high quality. I think I like the ’30s beach pyjamas best too, they’re just so fun. Can’t wait to see what you get up to in 2016! x

  2. Christina says:

    I too am trying to get some useful sewing done, but hell its hard. Who wants to sew muted tones and basic shapes when colours, prints and trims are calling! Great round up, my fav is the umbrella print with the green bows. Totally adorable!!!

  3. Jenny Frances says:

    Thank you Porcelina! I always think it’s nice to look back on projects and then think about what I would do differently in the future/or how I can improve my skills. Wishing you a wonderful 2016! xxx

  4. Jenny Frances says:

    Haa ha, I know exactly what you mean Christina! All the nice novelty prints, colours and silhouette’s.. all so difficult to resist! I’m pretty sure I will still do some ‘frivolous’ sewing over the next year, and if it makes us smile then that’s the main thing! 🙂 (That’s what I’m going to tell myself anyway..) xx

  5. Esther says:

    Wow! You’ve made so many great pieces, my favourite is still hands down the 1930’s beach pyjamas!!! My new years sewing resolutions are always to use fabric and patterns from my stash, but at the the end of the year I always have more then I started with 😛

  6. Jessica Cangiano says:

    Goodness me, what a treasure trove of skillful, stylish, fantastic work. You really, really hit it out of the sewing ballpark this year, sweet dear.

    Joyful holiday season wishes!
    ♥ Jessica

  7. Wendy Bayford says:

    Goodness you have been so busy this year, your projects are utterly beautiful I would happily wear all of them, but I must agree those beach Pajamas are just the tops! I have similar plans for 2016, though I have had the same plans for many years now 😉 I do hope you have a wonderful Christmas and a mega creative stash busting year ahead! x

  8. Jenny Frances says:

    Thank you so much Wendy! Hoping to get cracking on the fabric stash (and the stash of patterns that I have never made!). Not sure how long my good intentions will last though.. probably not that long once I get distracted by a novelty print, haa ha! 🙂

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