2021 Sewing Goals

I still haven’t posted some of my makes from 2020, but here are some sewing goals for 2021.

  • Sew my stash

I have a great fabric stash, with so many textures, patterns, and colors that make me happy. My goal for 2021 is to use it.

  • Master stand collars

I’ve made half a dozen button down shirts and stand collars still give me sweats. I am certain I can master them, and I want to do so in 2021.

  • Draft a pattern from scratch

I’ve done a lot of reading about drafting. This year I want to actually do it and make a garment that’s all mine, start to finish.

And finally, I want to share more of my work here, as I make it.

Today’s #memademay look is a bit of #covidcouture: I haven’t had tons of time to see since starting a company back in October, so during shelter in place I’ve been trying to spend a few minutes here and there finishing (or re-exploring) projects and also trying to sew my stash.

This shirt falls into the latter: a 2yd remnant I found at Cliffs Hardware in San Francisco over a year ago that I knew should be another Collette (ahem, @seamwork) #negronishirt. Working with a small amount of fabric forced me to be clever with the cutting layout (sorry grainlines!), but overall I couldn’t be happier.

I’m not sure I’d use this sort of fabric again: the pieces nature made things like felled seams impossible (who needs em!), and I broke more than one needle 😳, but it was worth it.

Today’s post for Me Made May is a me made flub. I was — am! — super excited when @fridaypatterncompany released the #ilfordjacket: ever since I was in Amsterdam last year I’ve been dreaming of a chore/work jacket. So it was a bummer when I first finished it and realized it was too short in the body and sleeves.

The body was an easy fix: add a waistband! And I like how that turned out.

The cuffs were trickier, and here’s where things fell apart: I made a double length cuff, ripped off the original ones, and managed to get them attached. Only to get clever with my button holes and put them too far in, so I. CANT. BUTTON. THEM. 🤬🤯😭

Maybe someday I’ll have the patience to replace the cuffs AGAIN, but for now I’m filing this under “learning experience”. And if past experience is Ang guide, I’ll come back to this in the fall, fix the cuffs, and love it. Regardless I’ll be making an #ilfordjacket that works.

Fabric from @discountfabricsf, buttons from @moodfabrics and my Paris trip last year (green ones).

My Me Made May outfit today is a short sleeve Negroni, from @seamwork, in lightweight cotton plaid from @stonemountainfabric (from the half price floor!).

Fun fact: this is the first pattern I bought, years before I owned a sewing machine (and when the pattern was still a “Colette”). A friend was helping me sew it on her sewing machine, and like many of my projects, my first attempt (in a terrible yellow cotton) lay half completed in a drawer for years before I picked it up again.

This has become a tried and true pattern for me once I got the length adjustment right and figured out I’m an “extra-ish large” (large in the shoulders, xl on the torso).

Today for Me Made May I’m wearing an Elbe Sage tee. I made this back in July, and like my linen pants, this tee never got much wear. This was my first attempt at mixing knits, and at the time I was happy with the color blocking but not the fit. Trying it on this morning, I’m less critical; maybe it’s that I have my quarantine bod back, maybe it’s time. Sewing wise, I think part of my disatisfaction comes from the weight of the striped fabric: it’s super light weight. The sleeves are a light-weight fleece, but the combination is just… off.

I made these @threadtheorydesigns Jedediah pants almost a year ago, but today was the first time I wore them out. Why? They were too long when I finished them so I decided to shorten them. And when I finished with the scissors, they were shorter than I intended. So they hung over the back of my sewing chair until this morning. When I decided to just lean into the mistake. And I think I like them! #memademay #memademay2020 #sewqueer #menwhosew #sewcialists

“Bomber jacket, but make it fabulous.” Dead-stock Mille fabric from @stonemountainfabric that immediately said “outerwear” to me. . #imadethis #menwhosew #sewqueer #renaissancequeer

Finished linen pants and camp shirt this weekend. More photos and notes to come. Also, my sewing form has a weirdly high waist. #oaklandsews #imadethis #menwhosew #sewqueer

Finally finished this short sleeve @seamworkmag Negroni yesterday. Like my previous, long-sleeved attempt, I had to shorten the body before hemming. This time I also wound up having to shorten the sleeves after assembling them, which means I lost some of the taper. Oh well, there’s already another one in the works where I actually remembered to shorten things before cutting. The fabric was half off from @stonemountainfabric so I don’t feel all that bad about the mistakes. #imadethis #menwhosew #sewqueer #campshirt #convertiblecollar #shortsleeves

New York stash: four shirtings and a double faced wool from Mood; buttons from Mood, C+C, and @fab_scrap

Shopping in the garment district today. Some finds for future shirts and lots of buttons. Thank you, Mood!

Another pair of @threadtheorydesigns Jedediah shorts, just in time for a trip to the east coast. I’ve been sitting on this corduroy from @stonemountainfabric for the better part of a year; I knew from the moment I saw it I needed it to be shorts. And after struggling in the past, I’m particularly pleased with how the flat felled inseam turned out. French seams on the side and binding I picked up from @petitpan complete the clean finish inside. Can’t wait to wear these!

Almost finished with my Artemis jacket.

Whipped up a T-shirt using a pattern from Ottobre today; closer to the fit I was looking for, going to revisit the color blocked T-shirt soon.

Ever since seeing a “kimono inspired” jacket of Queer Eye, I’ve been wanting to make one. Realized the @iam_patterns Artemis is pretty much that, so it’s up next.

Making progress on this Negroni shirt. Looks like it could have both the best and worst felled seams I’ve ever made.

Back to sewing this weekend. I’ve been thinking about this color blocked T-shirt for a while, finally attempted to whip it up. It was a good opportunity to practice using the serger and coverstitch machine, but the fit isn’t what I had in mind. Back to the drawing board.

My maternal grandmother sewed as long as I can remember. I remember her button box as a kid, and still have the knotted leopard print blanket she made me. So the fact that I have her sewing table means a lot to me. When I inherited it, there were random bobbins, needles, and notes in the single tiny drawer. I’ve held onto them through numerous moves, and last night I finally put them into a shadow box, along with the remains of Frog, which grandma made for me years ago.

It’s been a second since I posted. Making has been paused while we were house hunting and moving. But as of yesterday I have a dedicated sewing room/studio, complete with movable work table. More details to come, but I’m so so so excited about this.

Coming soon: Mapplethorpe cardigan realness.

Back home with this bounty of treasures from our vacation.

Vintage buttons from Paris. A little bummed the button store in Amsterdam, De Knopenwinkel, won’t be open tomorrow, but I think I’ll survive.

First sewcial visit in Paris. Gorgeous yarns, lovely curated fabric selection, and a wall of vintage buttons. “Sorry, monsieur, they are forty years old and there are only three left.”

London fabric stop. 😍🧵💸