Monthly Sewing Review – 2023 January Wrap Up

Somehow after a very crafty December, January has resulted in almost no sewing, crafting, or other creative pursuits. It has been a busy month with travel and work, and we’ve also had a few unexpected issues pop up that have taken over a lot of my crafting time. I was able to get several update blog posts out earlier this month though, so I am at least caught up on documenting all of my end of 2022 projects!

Sewing Progress

There isn’t a lot to report on the sewing progress front. Originally, I had planned to make a Patrones pattern to wear to a wedding I went to this month. However, the lining fabric I ordered wasn’t really what I needed to go with the lace I wanted to use, and by the time everything arrived I was feeling crunched for time and had to make the decision to focus on other things. I wore my green dress from last year, so it was alright not having anything new, though it would be nice to have some more options and a slightly less evening style dress to wear.

Because I’ve been gone or busy most weekends this month, it’s sort of set back my sewjo. In a wild two nights of all-nighter sewing, I did get back into some bra making… here’s a sneak peak of part 3 of my Adventures in Bra Sewing:

I will go into more details in an upcoming post, but suffice to say that I’m really pleased with how this came out! It was a total mad dash over 2 nights that went from “maybe I can prep a pattern” to “I guess I have a bra now” real fast. I was also able to try some different techniques on this bra and it was really fun to have to think about the design process in this way. I still have a long list of things I want to try in my to-sew list from the bra and underwear making classes. Considering everything else that is going on, getting even one small project like this done is a total win for the month!

Sewing Delays

This month was just super busy with other life things, events, and travel. I think also after the high levels of stress from end of the year work, holidays, and travel for these events, my body and adrenaline levels are just sort of crashing, and my output has been really slow lately. I do think I need to start spending more evenings doing at least a little sewing… probably sewing even 30 minutes a night is probably better long term than staying up until 4am sewing 2 days in a row. I’ve also been spending a lot of time with digital projects and I’m definitely starting to get headaches from staring at screens all day, so doing something tactile would be really good to help break things up a bit.

I had wanted to make a more in-depth sewing plan with more extensive wardrobe needs analysis this month, and I did actually start to work on it. However, I’m finding that I’ve been pretty tired and not really in the creative mindset to think about planning things out. This is a bit weird for me, because I really do enjoy the thought process that goes into making sewing plans. But there have also been a lot of unexpected things coming up this month that are pretty time and energy consuming, so at this point I’m not going to try and force things and I’m going to be happy to focus on my current WIPs planned projects before adding more to my list.

Finished Projects

Unlike December, January was not a month full of finished projects. Aside from my unexpected Freja Bra, I did do a bit of Cricut work and made some NSFW bookmarks for my sister to gift her friends, as well as a new t-shirt design:

I feel like I want to explain the origin of this shirt design, but, well, I think I’m just going to leave it as a “if you know, you know” sort of situation.

WIPs & Upcoming Plans

So, as of now I currently have a few WIPs of all lace boyshorts from the Beverly Johnson boyshort class, but they all need gussets inserted before being functional. I also am about halfway through modifying the Kwik Sew shirt pattern I was working on; I’ve made adjustments to the bodice and bust darts, but I’m wrestling with how to adjust the sleeve cap for this… I’ve had to remove a lot of underarm space, and the sleeve cap was already very shallow, so I need to consider this adjustment a bit more. In terms of what will probably happen sooner than the button down shirt, I am pondering which will be the next step on my bra sewing adventure, especially now that I’ve gotten the Ruby pattern pretty well worked out and a few minor tweaks should get me a really nicely fitting Freja. Perhaps I’m finally at the point of wanting to draft some partial banded bras? I also ordered some foam cups to try out the Amanda Alyssa T-shirt Bra pattern at some point in the future as well, though I don’t think I’m quite “there” yet in terms of immediate sewing plans.

I’ve also been re-watching some of the Craftsy video classes and I still want to make some patterns to try out the following techniques:

  • Converting a full band bra to a partial band bra
  • Drafting foam patterns for the Freja
  • Trying different techniques with lace
  • Trying a keyhole bridge
  • Trying a Gothic Arch bridge
  • Trying Demi or Balconette styles

So I think for right now I’m probably going to still be on a bit of a bra making kick. I will say that after wearing my previous two bras a bit I have noticed that while I thought my RTW bras were comfortable, I find I reach for my self-made bras preferentially at this point, unless I am looking for a smooth cup to wear under a knit shirt. But the band and bridge of my self made bras really do fit so much better than ready to wear because of the small tweaks I have been able to make for fit with each iteration. My sister also wants to make several more bras, and so it’s continuing to be a fun project that we can work on together. I’m sure at some point we will have a sufficient selection of bras and be ready to make something else, but for now it’s still a fun project, especially because I feel like I’m finally able to move past the basic mechanics to actually making fun design choices!

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