Saturday, December 28, 2013

Top 5 in 2013

I wasn't going to do a review at the end of this year.  I really just wanted to make it safely into 2014 since the last three months have been so drama filled.  But then I read Beth's review at SunnyGal Studio Sewing and I went hmmm, but I still wasn't convinced. 

Then I read a few others, but the one that pushed me over and made think I could just name my Top 5 pieces/outfits was HeatherB, who blogs at Handmade By Heather B.  I read her posts this morning on the bus and they made me smile. There is such joy in her posts that I thought that's really how I should end my year with joy, not drama, not sorrow or worry but joy.

So a little background ~ this Top 5 concept started on Gillian's tumbler post, Join Me in Posting Your Top 5 Lists for 2013.  She did this last year also with a graphic to announce that you're participating.  I know that I've been doing an "end of year recap" for years, as many others have, but Gillian kinda gathered everyone together under one umbrella.

This year I've decided to stand under the umbrella with my fellow sewists...so here is my graphic...




...and here are my Top 5 Hits of 2013...

My Ponte & Leather Lafayette 148 knock-off started January off with a bang. I get compliments every time I wear this dress and I think it symbolizes how I wanted my sewing to evolve in 2013.




Pantsuits are always on my to-sew list.  This year I actually made one and for that reason alone it makes the list.  Even though this jacket just about killed me...however, after a time-out, it's been worn several times for important meetings at work.  I've gotten over the pain of it's birth and have come to love it for how easily it wears, yet how professional it looks.




I really pushed myself for the Mood Blogger's Lace Challenge.  My Easter Dress had 25-30 hours of hand stitching in it.  It was a knock-off of an Oscar de la Renta dress that was priced at $2,990 and as much as I love Oscar, he didn't make this dress in plus sizes.  My version was about $350.  A lot of money yes but it has the most amazing guipure lace hand stitched to the wool tweed fabric which was used as the base of the dress.  I was thrilled with the final dress which I've only worn twice.  Once to church and once to a wedding but I learned so much from making this dress, that it was worth every penny!




Number four is another outfit that's been on my to-sew list every season...a jacket and a dress combo.  I did manage to make a couple of these this year but this one stands out because it's so trendy!  More pleather and ponte - my two favorite fabrics this year!  I have loads of ideas for additional outfits using ponte and pleather but I've tried to restrain myself because I don't exactly have a job where I can look like a rocker chick!




My final piece for the Top 5 of 2013 ~ would be my latest sew ~ Vogue 1370. This is the perfect piece to culminate my sewing journey for 2013.  It's a sheath dress (my favorite silhouette) in black 'n white (so trendy this fall) and it brought the drama...which is definitely how 2013 is ending for me.




I have one runner-up garment and that would be my niece's prom dress.  I would never have been able to make such an elegant gown for her if it wasn't for the Lace Dress I made for myself.  Her dress had just as much hand sewing in it and a whole lot of handwringing but mostly I was just thrilled and proud that she had the dress of her dreams to wear to prom.




I won't be listing any of the other Top 5's because like I said earlier I want to end the year with joy.  In 2013, I made 35 outfits which you can see here and here. However, I have no sewing resolutions for 2014 other than to sew as much as I possibly can and to enjoy the journey. 

There will be one more post before 2013 rolls into 2014, I'm participating in a sew-along that I'm excited about and the details will be in that post.  I am sewing this weekend but I won't have anything to share...hey I'm taking my own advice and enjoying the journey!

Do tell me though, did I list your favorite of my garments for 2013?  If I didn't which one did you like and why? Oh and one more thing...I've finally changed my comment section and can reply to questions as they are asked.  Now here is the codicil...I won't be answering every comment but I will try really hard to answer any question left in the comments section.  So if you leave a question check back later, there will more than likely be an answer. 

...as always more later!


46 comments:

  1. Oh I do hope you are okay. I love the outfits you chose - they are fabulous! I do hope 2014 brings you lots of enjoyable sewing. g

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  2. Joys of the season to you, Carolyn. I hope2014 is happy, healthy and sew-ful for you!
    I love the outfits you chose. The ODLR one is my favourite, I love the prom dress and the vogue too... I always wonder whether you get time to wear all the things you sew! I guess you do!

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  3. What a great list - a very hard pick out of all of your lovely garments. My favourite is number 1 in your list of 5 but I am very partial to the purple wool and silk suit made in January. Happy new year Carolyn.

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  4. You really did do a lot of great dresses this year. And yes, some of the ones you showed would be my top picks for you. Great job! Nothing like a feeling of accomplishment to round out the year. You are so productive, I do envy that.... mostly cause you are so organized and I'm just not! lol... Beautiful garments made by a beautiful lady. Have a Wonderful New Year.

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  5. I loved your jacket & dress combo, but my pick of the bunch is the Vogue 1370. I hope you had a most enjoyable Christmas and wish you a New Year full of the joy of sewing.

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  6. Much as I love the lacy Oscar knock off, I think the pleather jacket & ponte sheath are the bestest.

    I always enjoy your blog, looking forward to what you sew next year.

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  7. I think you chose my favourites as well. Some gorgeous garments. Good idea to have a Pinterest page of your garments too.

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  8. Inspirational to see all of these together. I think the first dress is my favorite, elegant and professional at the same time. I've been reading the posts pn the dresses with ponte and leather, but I wondered if you had any more tips. I am having a hard time with it.

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  9. Love the pantsuit. Praying that you have a less drama-filled new year!

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  10. Wow, what a portfolio. Your sewing just gets better and better. All couture garments. Now are you ready for my new year's resolution? Sew like Carolyn!

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  11. As a regular fan I've seen all your garments for 2013 and think you've picked the perfect top 5 - all gorgeous and creative. I do have a question about how you store all your lovely clothes. Since I take great pride in all my garments (especially those sewn by me) my closet is neat and organized by type of garment then by color. So, how you hang those beautiful clothes?

    Karen

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    1. I have a small closet that I hang my dresses and suits in by season. A double clothes rack in my bedroom that holds shoe boxes, sweaters & tops on it's top rack, skirts and pants on the back rack and my current outfits for the week on the front rack. I do a lot of purging and I'm getting ready to do another big one soon. It's time for some things to go so there is space for new ones especially since I'm still buying fabric!

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  12. I think my favorite is that beautiful lace dress. I know lace is the trend, but I also think you did it in such a classic way.

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  13. I love your blog. As a plus size woman myself, I find it hard to find any tutorial that focuses on plus size. I am starting my own but I am no where near the seamstress as you are. Your stuff is amazing. Thanks for being an inspiration.

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  14. I love these end of the year lists from you prolific sewists! The five you chose are fabulous, and I love seeing them again. My favorite that didn't make the list is V8935. You took a ho-hum pattern and made a classic and classy outfit. Thanks for sharing your sewing with us.

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  15. You picked some of my favorite of your 2013 garments. I do love the ponte and pleather dress. Probably my favorite. The lace and tweed dress is really spectacular and deserves to be worn more!

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  16. 2014 is going to be a great year. The pleather jacket and ponte dress is my favorite. When I come to NYC, I'm raiding your closet, lol. Have a Happy New Year.

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  17. Awesome picks! I also loved the purple pleasant jacket and dress, along with the 60's inspired boucle jacket. You are an inspiration to me and I look forward to your 2014 posts.

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  18. Wow! Carolyn! I love these dresses! You've got five amazing items to show! Yes, I too am glad you posted. Great job this year!

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  19. Carolyn, thanks for the shout out ! How interesting that almost all of your dresses shown here are mixed materials with really creative and beautiful uses. I do like the first dress the best but they are all great. Good luck with everything in 2014, Happy New Year, Beth

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  20. What a wonderful year for you. The dress at the top is my all time favorite!

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  21. since I love wearing a cardigan I was sort of partial to that 5760 one you did and love seeing you reinvent the burda tnt one into new sets. I wouldn't mind seeing either of those cardigans done up in the coming year. I think the one of your picks that is awesome is that black ponte and pleather one. It looks really great on you.

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  22. Beautiful work this year. I'm sorry your last few months have been stressful. I always am inspired by your work and the amount of care, time, and skill each garment exhibits. Thanks for sharing them with us!

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  23. The ponte and leather dress is definitely my favorite. So much so that everyday when I walk through the Lafayette 148 shop at work I think of you and what item you can knock off next! Don't be surprised if one day I send you a list! LOL!

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    1. Toni - you should send me the list. I liked to see if it matches my own. There is so much goodness at Lafayette 148 that I'd love to sew...I just don't have enough time!

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  24. Love all your garments, they look amazing and your attention to detail just blows my mind away every time you post. I find your garments so inspirational, thank you for sharing.

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  25. My favorites were the first dress and the last. the first for the leather and ponte mix and the second for the houndstooth and black mix.

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  26. Carolyn, I love reading your blog so I'm sorry to hear that the past few months have been stressful for you...here's hoping that 2014 is better for you.

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  27. I'm so glad your Lafayette dress made your list, because that is my all-time favourite from this year. And I'm so hoping for you that the stress leaves you alone and you have a terrific 2014.

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  28. I love the ponte and leather dress, it's so classy and sassy at the same time.

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  29. i would say you picked my faves, but i have way more faves than five :)))

    i can't wait to hear your news!! here's to 2014, forREAL.

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  30. Your amazingly prolific & your top 5 picks proves it! The lace dress is my favorite. Happy and peaceful 2014 to you.

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  31. I hadn't seen the pantsuit before, I think that might be my favorite outfit of yours this year!
    Sounds like you've been through a few sucky months, hope it gets better for you soon!!

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  32. I love love love love #1 and #5!! The purple and black knit dress and jacket combo is also one of my favorites that didn't make the list. Hoping that 2014 ushers in an abundance of good feelings and good sewing! <3

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  33. Honestly it's hard for me to pick a favorite of yours, but WOW I do love #1. For one I don't recall having seen this one before which is weird because I normally check for new posts from you multiple times a week LOL.
    Thanks for all that you share with your readers and your work is truly an inspiration to me. I look forward to what you will be creating in 2014!

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  34. Yay, I'm so glad you posted your favorites-- I was really hoping you would do a roundup! You had so many gorgeous garments, but the ponte and leather Lafayette 148 dress is AMAZING! I love it! Happy 2014! Can't wait to see what you make next year!

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  35. I love everything that you make Carolyn, but yes, that ponte & leather Lafayette dress is probably my absolute favourite too! Congratulations on another wonderful year of sewing and I look forward to next year.

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  36. You had a great sewing year! Love the black and white dress!

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  37. quite honestly I don`t know how you could have limited your selection to just 5 .
    Happy New Year.

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  38. I love your style so much, I especially love your vogue 1370. Your blog was actually my inspiration to start my own. I am only new to this sewing caper but I love it and I will enjoy following you in 2014, happy new year!

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  39. LOVE all of your favorites! You are one of the most prolific sewists I know and always a great source of inspiration. I may not always comment, but I read all your posts from start to end, I really enjoy your blog and all the time and effort you put into it are well worth it. Happy New Year, Carolyn!

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  40. Hi Carolyn! I'm glad you did join in the Top 5-ing, because it helped me find your blog! I'm in love with your creative seaming on basic shift dresses - that's a big inspiration for me right now. I love sewing comfy knit basics, but I want to try to spice things up and be a bit more adventurous with how I use those materials and sihouettes! Thanks for the inspiration!

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  41. First of all, Happy New Year! Every garment shown in this post is a winner, as is everything you have made so far. I love the dress you made for your niece and did not see an original post about that beautiful creation. When I begin to sew again, please know that you will be the catalyst that got me doing so. Right now, I am trying to lose the rest of the extra weight and get myself ready to have both knees replaced in the spring, but once those are behind me, I will sew in earnest. Before that, I will be making something (not sure what) for my 50th high school reunion in April. I saw a few neat dresses on the Style Arc site but can't imagine what shipping would be to the US. Once this coming snow storm passes us, I will get out and look at pattern books. I wish you all the best in this new year, and can hardly wait to see all your new and wonderful creations. Thanks for all the inspiration!

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  42. Definitely a great top 5 post! These are my favorites as well (the leather/ponte and lace dresses are my ABSOLUTE favorites)!

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  43. I want to thank you for all the time and energy you put into your blog--I very much appreciate it! I love the first and last dresses with their pieced texture contrasts. I wonder that you don't seem to have ventured into real leather--it's so beautiful, and used as contrast, it's not that expensive. It's also a lot easier to sew than pleather. Imagine a yummy teal suede in V1370. Looking forward!

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  44. I love the ponte & leather dress. You look gorgeous in it!

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