Monday, 28 December 2015

Goodbye 2015, Hello 2016!!!


(pants self-sufficiency: my greatest sewing achievement?)

So, 2015, how was yours? Mine seemed to fly by, and in many ways I'm pleased to see the back of it. However, I feel is was a real success, sewing-wise. Here were my highlights:


  • Me-Made-May was bigger and more awesome than ever before! More people signed up to challenge themselves than any previous year, so that means awesome things for collectively developing better relationships with our handmade garments. As we all know, taking and sharing photographs of your outfits throughout May is NOT the what the challenge is all about, just the optional documentation of it, but as the most visible manifestation of the challenge, I found it interesting to note that participation via the Flickr board was down slightly this year, but Instagram was on FIRE with the #mmmay15 hashtag (and all the other hashtags that ended up being used!). In fact, the #mmmay15 hashtag clocked up over 13,000 on Instagram. That’s totally understandable of course, Instagram is sooo much easier to use than most sharing platforms, eh? MMMay also got some great non-handmade clothing community exposure too, most notably on the Huffington Post UK site, and hopefully we can build on that with even more next year. Which reminds me, I need to get a MMMay FAQ’s section up by next Spring.
  • Sewing for me: Aside from failing at my aim to nail trouser fitting, sewing for myself went very well this year. For the first time ever, I experimented with making a plan of forth-coming projects, and actually stuck to it (I still have two projects to go). From that, my sailboat raincoat has been the garment that has seen the most use so far. Oh, and I also became pants self-sufficient this year.
  • Sewing for Dolores: In 2014 I enjoyed sewing for Dolores more than sewing for myself. This year, it's been neck and neck. She has only just started to notice that she even wears clothes, let alone has an opinion on them, so it's been really fun to make whatever I like for her. I can use up small pieces of fabric, and use fabric that I love that I wouldn't wear myself. I can play with appliqu├ęs and embellishment, not worry too much about a perfect finish, and let's face it, small clothes look so cute! Taking part in the Kids Clothes Week challenges this year has been fabulous, and not surprisingly, the Upcycling edition was my favourite (explanation here and results here). 
  • Releasing my Anya shoulder Bag pattern: I found working on and releasing my latest sewing pattern, the Anya shoulder bag pattern, soooo fulfilling, despite the massive amount of hard work that was required! Seeing the testers' versions trickle in was one of the most exciting events in 2015 for me. It's been so fun that I've already begun work on my next two patterns...
  • The Refashioners: My goodness, the Refashioners challenge turned EPIC this year, didn't it?! So many sewing-blogger participants AND a community challenge that spawned some truly phenomenal shirt refashions. Fingers crossed, more sewers will consider making stuff from existing and unwanted garments rather than new fabric all the time, once they've seen all the amazing creativity that was on display. 

And 2016? I’m not going to make an extensive list of things to make and learn. I’m going to crack on with making whatever I want, using up my stash of fabric as much as possible, and making sure that each of my plans is likely to see years of wear. Of course I have many hopes and dreams for 2016 that are less directly related to sewing, but the only thing I will be making a commitment to myself to address is my sleep issues. As a long-time but intermittent insomniac, I have found that periods of bad sleep not only screw with your nighttime, but also effect pretty much every aspect of your daytime as well, which is really unfair! Your mood, your appetite, your energy levels, your patience,  your motivation, everything is so much harder, and it can feel so lonely when you're the only person in your household laying there awake. Again. Even though I know that there are probably hundreds of others experiencing sleep problems in the same town as me, let alone around the world.

Anyways, I wish you all a wonderful festive period, or at least a bloody good relax, whether or not you celebrate anything specific around this time of year. Thanks so much for reading my blog throughout 2015, and I promise more of the same for 2016! Love and best wishes to all xxx

15 comments:

MrsC (Maryanne) said...

Hello! I feel for you. being an insomniac myself. I read, stay away from the computer with the lit up screen, but is hard. I used to sew, and some of my best work was done in the middle of the night, but these days I just can't be bothered.
I love love love your bag pattern - I am so sorry I failed to get the test one done - it was a reminder to me of how little time I have left in my life to do anything not work related. :( But, I have made my bed, as they say!
All the best for 2016 xo

Sharon said...

All the best Zoe you have had an amazing year and wishing you and your family a fantastic 2026.

Louise Perry said...

Happy 2016 to you and your family.

Anonymous said...

Heartfelt sympathy for your sleep problems; oh so tough when you have a lively child to look after. Sudoku works for me! When I read I'd be thinking about it afterwards; numbers don't stick in your mind. I have several Sudoku books on the go and as soon as I get stuck I either turn to another one or switch off the light. And I normally dislike puzzles, games etc. as a waste of time! Linda

Allison Graden said...

Have a very happy 2016!! I know how lack of sleep affects every aspect of your life! I am not an insomniac but I went through a several year period of working full time AND sewing full-time for other people just to keep me and my kids fed and housed so I was averaging about 3 hours a night. It affected me so much it took a long time for the damage to be reversed-depression, weight gain, etc. I hope you can find some help for that in the new year.

Mother of Reinvention said...

So sorry to hear of your sleep problems. I suffered have suffered from insomnia for years. It hasn't been so bad when I was commuting as I came home shattered and managed at least 4 hours with only 1-2 interruptions but since being back home I am finding it hard. It must be very difficult with a small, active child to look after during the day. I hope that 2016 is as productive for you as 2015 has been. It's been a pleasure following all your sewing and interesting posts. I am looking forward to 2016. All the very best to you and yours for the New Year when it comes. Xx

Christals Creations said...

I love the pants. I made one pair from a Flo Jo set I gained and kept thinking that was easy should make more but find small people's clothes so much easier than sewing for me. I have yet to make my small people underwear, dd would without a doubt wear it if she were ready to loose those darn nappies but not so sure about the boys. I am looking forward to seeing your posts in 2016. :)

jessica said...

I love that cheerful little pile of pants at the very top of the post! What a year 2015 has been - you've done quite a bit, sewing-wise, and on little sleep! I so relate to that one, having been insomniatic since my teenage years. In the last 3-4 years, it's morphed from difficulty falling asleep to difficulty staying asleep (although the falling-asleep-difficulty is still there, just not as bad as before). Ugh. Will email you separately with more thoughts, but here's hoping 2016 brings a bit of relief in that department. It's so hard to tackle everything else when sleep is elusive! Also, I've really loved seeing all the Dolores and Anya variations out there, and can't wait to see these 2 new patterns you have brewing :-). Happy 2016!!

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BLD in MT said...

I didn't hear about the Refashioners Challenge! How cool! I love that. I will have to play along this year. I've got a few old garments that cannot be mended squirreled away...maybe I can figure out some way to give them new life. I look forward to MMM2016 already. And you've prompted me: I need to work on some underpants! My store-boughts are nearing their end and how cool would it be to have my own me-mades underneath my me-made dresses, too?!

In My Sewing Box said...

Funny the makes that give the most satisfaction I, like you, made eight pairs of knickers this year which are a daily delight!

Ianroniel Baluyut said...

It was indeed a wonderful year, well another year to fill with, good luck to us!

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Roni arbel said...

I hope you find helpful tricks to calm your nights. I can relate... I know how lonely it feels to be the only one awake.

Kristine Abat said...

It was a wonderful year definitely for me as well, but has found myself lacking inspiration to start a project sometimes. Hopefully with loads of additional resources and inspiration, my sewing 2016 will be better!

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