Sunday, December 31, 2023

My Big 2024 Sewing Goal and How I Got Here (The Short Story)

The very first thing I want to do in 2024 is clean out my closet. I am planning a major purge to clear out all the ready-to-wear pieces that I don't wear in order to make room for my big goal: to build a wardrobe consisting almost entirely of clothing that I have sewn. Over the next year, I am going to try not to buy any new ready-to-wear clothing, none at all, and instead make every new piece I wear. 

Right now, I am getting reacquainted with sewing apparel. Like many women of my generation, I learned to sew as a young girl. I couldn't tell you what I sewed in those days, but I clearly remember learning to sew on my mother's Sears Kenmore machine at a very young age. When I got to high school, I took sewing as an elective for two semesters and began to make a lot of my own clothes. I do remember a number of those pieces...a blue velvet blazer, a blue plaid blouse with a metallic thread running through it, a pair of turquoise pants with a matching striped tee. But that was about 43 years ago, and after high school I did very little sewing. 

In 2019 I bought a Singer Patchwork on Black Friday and started sewing again, but I hadn't figured out pattern sizing yet, and almost everything I made was too small for me. I got frustrated and gave up on apparel. I turned to crocheting instead, which was another skill I learned as a young girl and had abandoned somewhere along the way. After making a number of afghans, I then turned to hatmaking during the pandemic and have been making flat-pattern hats for the past three years. I loved making hats so much that I bought more sewing machines and turned my spare bedroom into a full-fledged studio, a space that I absolutely love. 

I very recently decided to give apparel sewing another try. I decided to start simple and take my time relearning technique. It's been fun pulling out patterns and fabric that I bought back in 2019 and boxed away out of frustration. On Black Friday this year, I bought a serger (and I will soon tell more stories about this!). I am really enjoying sewing clothing again, and although I still have not entirely figured out my pattern size, I am getting closer. The new items that I made are just slightly roomy rather than way too small. 

So back to my goals for 2024...

I want to start the year off making blouses with details, such as statement sleeves and pussybows. I also want to make some knit midi dresses. By the end of 2024, I want to be able to make some tailored pieces, like a structured navy blue blazer (as in the classic Parisian style, brass buttons and all). This navy blue blazer is my dream piece for 2024. 

Mainly, I want to take my time, perfect my skills, and add pieces to my wardrobe that I will be proud to wear for many years.