2014 Superlatives


It's that time of the year again!  Time to take a moment to look at all the things that we've made and to assess what went right and what went, well, not so right.  So without further ado, I present to you the 2014 superlatives.


Well, there are a fair number of competitors in this category this year, mostly because this year was really a return to basics.  Yes, I could sew fancy dresses every day but the fact is that I rarely wear them and this year I tried to focus more on things that actually get worn.  And I have to say that this focus was pretty successful because I regularly find myself turning to handmade garments to wear.  As for my most worn items, well this is where you realize that I'm a totally boring human being because probably my most worn items are these Plantain Tees.  White and gray t-shirts?  Is there even a more boring garment than that?  If so, I'll probably make that one too.  

A close runner-up though is something a tad bit more exciting - undies!  I loved making undies with the Ohhh Lulu Grace pattern and I fully blame this pattern for getting me hooked on lingerie making. The good news is that if my shirts are totally boring, at least my knickers aren't.

As for the kids, I could go with the old standby of undies because O still rocks her handmade undies (in between her Frozen undies, of course), but if we're excluding undergarments, I'm going to go with this Oliver and S Hopscotch dress.  O is definitely a dress girl and a knit dress is perfect for everyday wear.  Plus I love that it has long sleeves since it's often quite chilly around here.  I tried to create my own knit dress for O's first day of school but the result kind of sucked, so I'm definitely going back to the Hopscotch dress.  Unfortunately I'll have to buy a bigger size for next year.  Wahhh!


For me it was definitely this Meridian Cardigan.  While I love the pattern, I was a dumb butt and made one size smaller than was recommended.  Because of this I had to fuss with the cardigan to make it fit correctly over my shoulders and this drove me a bit bonkers.  I tried to make it work but in the end  that little issue drove me nuts and so I accepted the fact that I wasn't going to wear it and instead cut it up to make a shirt for O.  Perhaps the fabric is cursed, though, because not only did I mess things up when cutting out the shirt (resulting in a seam down the front of the shirt) but I broke two double needles while hemming it so it's still waiting around to be finished.

For the kids, it was definitely this hat.  I wrote about my woes in making it in the original post so there isn't much more to say except that it has since found a new home.  So long, Huck Finn cap!


For the kids, definitely the Hanami Dress.  As with most things, I was a little late coming around to this pattern, but once I found it I jumped all in.  In fact I made not one, not two, but three Hanami dresses this year and there will no doubt be many more made in the future.  

And for me and the kids, I have to go with the City Gym Shorts pattern (you gotta love a pattern that comes in child and adult sizes).  Not only is it my favorite price (free!), but the shorts use so little fabric and they're really fun to put together.  The black and gold version are definitely my and O's favorites.  In fact, she decided that they were perfect for soccer and she wore them to every game throughout the season.  Be forewarned, however, that the shorts are definitely on the short side.  In fact, I had the distinct pleasure of overhearing some parents talking about them, commenting "I didn't even know that you could buy shorts that short anymore."  Turns out you can't - you have to make them.  Ha!

And can I pick a runner-up for favorite pattern?  Good.  Then I choose the Watson Bra pattern.  I've made two bras from this pattern so far (one that I haven't blogged about yet) and I have to say that it's a great first bra pattern and is surprisingly supportive for not having an underwire (although I don't have a whole lot to support, if you now what I'm saying).  I'm really excited to see how I'll be able to use this pattern in the new year.  And not surprisingly, so is Ben.


My Alabama Chanin Dress.  Yes, it's extremely simple but I think that that may be what I love most about it.  It's simple, yet it has such a flattering silhouette.  It's all hand sewn and I really like the visible hand stitching along the seams and the neckline.  I didn't finish it until the end of summer so it hasn't gotten a ton of use, but I'll be excited to break it out again once the sun decides to warm up our little corner of the earth once again.  

For the kids, I'd have to say that my overall favorite is this Oliver and S Popover dress.  I've never worked with a border print fabric before I loved playing around with the placement of the different prints.  I think that the different, yet coordinating prints, really kicked the dress up a notch and I love the way that it came out.  


2014 was supposed to be the year that I got serious about stash busting and while I certainly made a bunch of garments with items from my stash, I'm not sure that I'm ending 2014 with less crap fabric than I began with.  

As for the new year, my hope is to keep learning, whether that's fitting a new garment or trying out a new technique.   2015 may be the year when I finally try to tackle a pair of pants.  Also, while not sewing related I also need to work on my posture.  I'm not getting any younger around here and my posture gets worse and worse every year.  Actually, come to think of it, it may be sewing related because hours of sewing while hunched over a sewing machine is probably not the best thing for you when you already have poor posture.

So here's to loving, learning, and standing up a bit straighter in the new year.   Wishing you much health and happiness in 2015!

And just for kicks, here are the superlatives from years past: 2013 & 2012


  1. So many pretty makes! I love them all! The Alabama Chanin dress is so cool. I've always wanted to make one. I'd love to make some undies too! Thanks for the inspiration

  2. You've made some beautiful things and I like your attitude to the year's misses!
    There's nothing that doesn't look perfectly professional in these pictures and I can't get over making underwear for yourself. To me that's a few steps beyond pants, so you'll nail that one for sure!
    happy, upright, new year to you and yours!

  3. Great roundup, and having a giggle over the overheard conversation :oD

    Hope you have a great 2015!

  4. I'm dying laughing over the parents' talking smack about O's shorts. You should have told them you were trying to show off her handmade undies.

    I think all of the above are pretty fantastic...even the least worn. And if I ever, ever finish my Alabama Chanin t-shirt, I will totally try making that dress. Maybe by 2016.

  5. This was so fun to read:) I adore all your sewing, but it's fun to see which ones you prefer over the less-favored ones. Your Hanami Dress is gorgeous! I can see why you sewed three of them:) And the Hopscotch dress is a favorite over here too, though I've struggled with the finding the right size to sew. Your City Gym short recap was priceless too - your daughter certainly rocks the gold *short* soccer shorts:)
    Thanks for taking the time to post and share your thoughts - a very productive year for you and I'm super impressed by the lingerie sewing!

  6. I love your year-end posts. It is so nice to hear how sewing projects work out many months in. It's a nice perspective. And the shorts story- ha! These are on my sewing list for next summer so I'll keep the shortness in mind!

  7. Carolyn, you had a great year! though i for one would love to see more of you in 2015! ;) i love your blog and your style so much.
    i am amazed that you made bras! that is just incredible. And the undies are super cute and sexy, too! ;) i'm with Shelley, that pants will be a breeze for you, with all your mad skillz. :)
    I can't wait to see what you create this year! Oh and your posture looks great in every picture I've seen. :)


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