Wednesday, May 18, 2011

What to sew?

A no picture post, which is an exception for me. I’m so disappointed in my sewing lately, I seem to sew more wadders or clothes that I don’t love/like than clothes I like to wear.

The result of past months (and on most I haven’t blogged before because of the disappointment):

  • Wrap blouse from Burda September 2011: shoulders were too wide, more drop-down style. Could be remedied by adding little pleats in the front and back. But the front doesn’t suit my figure. The back is fitted, the front should be changed to a more fitted style. Still thinking about how to change the front, because I love the fabric.
  • Knip Mode pants: wadder, fabric too stiff, fit no good at all
  • Knip Mode top from the May issue: pattern basically OK, but style no good on me
  • Pair of trousers of beautiful linen/silk: I put on a straight waistband that’s too stiff and I should have used a shaped waistband instead (can I still change that?)
  • T-shirt of which the neckline is too wide because I didn’t realize that the new neckbinding technique needed a seam allowance and I had cut that off in my pattern. It’s fine under a jacket, so not lost. But not motivating.
  • Pair of blue linen trousers, which I almost finished this evening. Good fit, but seems a bit high in the waist. Also the blue color I liked so much at the bolt, is reminding me when I wear it of a workman’s overall (no offence meant, just not the style I’m looking for).

Has this ever happened to you? What could/should I do to get back into sewing things I love? There’s the Chanel style jacket to be finished, and I love it till now, but my need in general is for more casual clothes .


  1. May I suggest some rest.
    And start a new project that you realy heart and tke your time.

  2. It sounds like you deserve a break from sewing! I am sad to hear that you are having a bad streak of sewing, but it is comforting to know that even more experienced seamstresses have unlucky spells too.

  3. It's funny you say that about the blue pants. I never know what color pants can be other than black, navy, gray and I guess khaki.

  4. How horribly frustrating!
    Maybe finishing the Chanel jacket would make you feel better, give you a shot of energy? If you're not managing to get any of the casual clothes you need, maybe something you don't need but love will make you happy?
    Do you think you might just be getting generally depressed about it all? Is it possible for instance that the blue pants would go well with something you already have, and that you just need to get your eye used to them? The too-stiff pants are a wadder I agree, but is there a dog or two you could rescue from the pile?

    You've been really persistent here, if it's any consolation :-). But it's hard to stay totally zen about the results when you actually need stuff.. I think I'd have stuck my head under the pillow and turned off the machine for a couple months if I had such a hideously long unlucky streak. Maybe you need a quick, cute little bra from Kantje Boord :-)?

    Hard balance isn't it, keeping oneself awake with enough experimentation, and keeping oneself satisfied with good results?

  5. Mmm.. this sounds familiar!
    I find it helps to get stuck in and get the unpicking/ripping done - that is the bit that stymies me. Once that's done, I begin to move onwards and upwards!
    I really should apply that to my own Chanel jacket....!

  6. Firstly yes the pants with the stiff waistband can definitely be fixed though I understand you might not feel like that now. I have found that when I make things I simply need all the joy gets sucked out, I have to make things I want to make. This may not lead to the most practical wardrobe in the world, but it keeps sewing fun and interesting.

  7. Sigrid: You sew beautifully! This is just a little glitch moment. You probably need to sit on a patio and have a some drinks with friends for a couple of weeks. Then, when you come back to sewing, it will be as if you've hit the reset button.

  8. Sigrid, take my advice with a grain of salt, because everyone seems to have a different way to deal with shriveled sewing mojo.

    But first, be kind to yourself. You are an amazing sewist who inspires people all over the world and this is just temporary. Maybe even necessary.

    Also get rid of those wadders. Quickly or ceremoniously, but don't leave them around to mock you.

    Then, what works for me is to go shopping. I visit boutiques or shops that sell the kinds of clothes that I love. I try things on. It gets me all revved up and eager to hit the machine.

    And then sew something that feels fun to you. Fun, fun, fun.

    That's what works for me. :)

  9. Sigrid, I went through a spell like this recently, and it wasn’t fun! I found what helped me most was to find a fairly quick project that I knew would be successful. How about sewing a gorgeous pair of panties to get you back into a successful mindset; you make those so beautifully! Or perhaps you might take a pattern you used for a favorite garment and make it again. You’ll already know what alterations are needed and what hand of fabric to use, so you can spend your time having fun embellishing it or color blocking the garment. I decided my goals for a project had to be that it would be easy and fun. After a few successful projects, I was in a more positive mindset again. Good luck. I do hope that you will quickly get back to having fun when you sew.

  10. it sounds as if your clothes taste is changing ?before the next project do as Shams says and then take a long look at what you love and wear in your current wardrobe too,maybe this will give a boost to your sewing mojo if not just take a break for awhile and enjoy the summer see you soon

  11. Why not tackle a quick and risk-free project like Vogue 1250 that's been popping all over the blogs or something similar?

  12. My first thoughts are to sew a cute handbag - they don't need to fit and you can combine any number of crazy colours, textures, patterns and they usually come out great! And I like the sound of Sham's advice - to go boutique shopping - not to buy but to motivate you. I'm sure you'll kick into gear soon!

  13. Yes, this happens to me quite often! There are a few factors that tank my sewjo: bad fit, poor fabric choice, indecision on what to sew next, and indecision on how to adjust a pattern for fit. As a result of one or a combination of many of these factors, I have lots of projects that never see the light of day.

    I've been in a sewing funk all winter and have only recently begun to sew regularly again. I find that sewing garments that I've made before helps to jump start the sewjo. This time, an inability to find long-sleeved tops for the trip (since I am *always* cold) is what revived my sewjo.

    I second what Shams said, plus add chocolate. =)


  14. How frustrating! I agree with those who recommend a break and chocolate.

  15. Wow! I've just discovered your blog and you do BEAUTIFUL work. Very inspiring, especially the lingerie. Will be investigating into that for me after seeing all your beautiful projects. Found you through Cidell's blog.

  16. I feel your pain. I have not been all that happy with what I've sewn lately either. It started with that winter coat. You'll get past it. Since I read your newer post before this one, I think that your lingerie set will make you feel better. Nothing like pretty lingerie to make you feel good.

  17. My suggestion would be to treat those projects as finds in a charity shop which you're going to do over.

    Stick a jacket on a sewing dummy and rip out the back and replace with a peplum of lace, or restructure the trouser front while adding in a second fabric (or convert to a skirt...). A million options - and if it still goes wrong, it's no great loss.

    A large part of sewing is always the creativity, and exploiting disaster has to be one of the most creative things to do.

  18. Yes. I've had a similar run recently and then I've been working on good fit for a Mother of the Grad dress. That seems to suck me right in and - sometimes - zaps all the fun. A palate cleanser sounds like a good idea. You're an amazing seamstress. I doubt you could not sew. You'll find a way.

  19. joh, maak je niet druk, het komt allemaal wel weer op zijn pootjes terecht. als je even een break neemt, krijg je vanzelf wel weer zin en lukt het allemaal wel weer. Je kunt hartstikke goed naaien zie ik en ik vind je blog altijd erg leuk. dus kortom........ probeer het straks weer en neem nu even rust. bovendien is de mode nu ook even niet zo leuk vind ik, dus misschien is dat wel het probleem.