Old Sewing Challenges


For 2012 I have decided to give myself a more purposeful sewing plan and hence created the Tim Gunn 10 Essential Items Sewing Challenge!  I have based my sewing goals on creating a wardrobe that Tim Gunn would approve of, along with filling a few of the other holes in my closet with Bonus items.  In addition, since this is a sewing challenge, I am trying to use patterns from as many different companies as possible in creating my wardrobe.  My ultimate goal is to complete at least 12 garments listed in this challenge by the end of 2012.

The Ten Essential Items to Make:
1. Basic Black Dress (BS-07-2011-131)
2. Trench Coat in a Neutral Color (BWOF-09-2006-103)
3. Classic Trousers (BS-10-2011-127)
4. Button Down Shirt (BWOF-07-2007-106A)
5. Jeans (J2908)
6. Any Occasion Top (M6078 B)
7. Skirt (BWOF-02-2005-128)
8. Day Dress (S2369 view A)
9. Jacket/Blazer (BS-07-2011-119)
10. Sweatsuit Alternative (BS-06-2011-114 + S2369)

Bonus Items to Make:
1. Raincoat (BD7360)
2. Wool Coat (B5685)
3. RTW Knockoff (BS-11-2012-118)
4. Fancy Party Dress (P-295-36)
5. "Unexpected" Trendy Item (PE-10-40)
6. An item from my "Sewing Plans" Sidebar List (MI-M1003)

Patterns to Use:
Burda Envelope
BurdaStyle Magazine (BWOF)
My Image

Essential Items Completed:

Bonus Items Completed:
New Patterns Used:
BurdaStyle Magazine (10-2011-127)
Butterick (5685)
Jalie (2802)
My Image (M1003)
Patrones (PE-10-40)
Simplicity (2369)
Vogue (1250)

Year End Conclusions:
In the end I fell a bit short of my overall goal of 12 completed items...  But I am happy with the garments I did create!  Life got a bit hectic and I wasn't able to complete the challenge as I would have wanted, but I did start planning items to be sewn as part of a wardrobe, instead of just making a bunch of assorted random things as suited my fancy.  This is something I hope to continue in my future sewing plans, and so I am going to call this challenge an overall success!


NOTE:  Due to the unexpected barrage of orders for skating costumes, a good portion of the year was spent sewing things not for me, which completely derailed my year-long sewing plans.  I officially abandoned my challenge plans here.  I still want to make most of the garments on this list, but I am going to be a lot more leisurely and unstructured in my approach to making them.

Last year's sewing challenge started me thinking about sewing with wardrobe planning in mind.  This year I want to continue the trend, but choose the projects I think are most needed to fill holes in my wardrobe while using up stash fabrics and finishing projects I had planned out long ago.  My plans are pretty extensive, but I don't expect myself to finish everything on the list this year.  I thought it would be better for me to have a full list of projects to choose from so that I would be less tempted to totally stray from my plans.  The overall goal is to sew clothes that are or will be seasonally appropriate, so I can get the most wear from the pieces I create as soon as I make them.

Here are my plans for the year...

January - March
(1) Teal Blazer (BS-07-2011-119) - February
(2) Tan Trench Coat (BWOF-09-2006-103)
(3) RTW Knockoff (BWOF-09-2006-103)
(4) Lightweight Day Dress (BS-03-2013-114) - March
(5) Birthday Dress (B5886 or V8789) - March
(6) Spring Skirt (BS-03-2013-109) - March
(7) Knit Cardigan (BS-03-2013-107) - March
(8) Knit Top (S1716) - January

April - June
(1) Lightweight Summer Jacket (BS-06-2012-121) - April?
(2) Summer Halter Dress (BS-07-2012-133) - June
(3) Shorts (PE-9-6) - May
(4) Jeans (P-284-5) - May
(5) Knit Top (BS-02-2011-102A) - April
(6) Woven Tank Top (PE-10-3, PE-15-8) - June
(7) Knit Dress (BS-02-2013-114) - April
(8) Navy Pants (BS-10-2011-121, V8751) - May
(9) Grey Pants (BWOF-05-2004-109, BWOF-01-2006-107) - April
*** BONUS: Graduation Dress for my sister! - April
*** BONUS: Skating costumes for competition! - April/May/June

July - September
(1) Casual Medium Weight Fall Jacket (BWOF-08-2006-101) - August
(2) RTW Knockoff #2 (BWOF-09-2006-103)
(3) Black Pants (BD7192) - August
(4) Black Pencil Skirt (BWOF-01-2009-112, BWOF-03-2009-104A) - July
(5) Knit Top (S1945) - July
(6) Cardigan (M5978, BS-04-2010-117B) - August
(7) Black Blazer (BS-11-2012-127A, BWOF-05-2009-102, BS-02-2011-126, Patrones?) - September

October - December
(1) Long Sleeved Dress (BS-10-2011-123) - October
(2) Blue/Teal Wool Coat (BWOF-01-2007-121, S2508, BS-12-2012-104) - November
(3) Grey Pencil Skirt (BS-08-2011-122, BS-09-2012-112) - October
(4) Knit Top (BS-11-2011-114) - November
(5) Ruffle Blouse (P-299-9) - November
(6) Silky Top (P-163-38) - December
(7) Holiday Party Dress (BS-12-2011-106/107, BS-12-2012-112) - December
(8) Silky Shirt (BWOF-02-2008-119B) - December

And here are my finished projects...

January - March
Simplicity 1716 - Teal Knit Top
BS-11-2012-136A - Teal Knit Top
BS-12-2012-139 - Green Fleece Hoodie
BS-12-2012-138 - Color Block Fleece Coat
BS-07-2011-119 - Teal Blazer
P-249-4 - Metallic "20s" Party Dress
BS-03-2013-109 - White "Lace" Spring Skirt

April - June
Coming Soon!

July - September
Coming Soon!

October - December
Coming Soon!


I have decided that rather than having set sewing goals for 2014, I would focus on sewing things I want to sew, rather than on things I need to sew.  Much of my sewing time has gone to sewing skating costumes, so I want to spend the personal sewing time I do have on projects I am really excited about.  You can check out my full post here, but here is a list of my top projects for 2014!

1. RTW Knockoff Trench Coats (BWOF-09-2006-103)
2. Coat with Back Pleat (BWOF-09-2006-101)
3. Fancy Evening Coat
4. Boucle Jacket
5. Jacket with Interesting Details
6. Wool Coat
7. Fancy Party Dress
8. Classy Sheath Dress
9. Jeans/Casual Pants
10. Shorts
11. Classic Trousers
12. Skirt with Interesting Details
13. Pretty Blouse
14. Vest
15. Fancy Robe/Sleepwear

NOTE:  Skating sewing got the best of me this year too!  I haven't managed to get many any of these projects done, and I am thinking I kind of need to abandon giving myself "sewing challenges" as I don't have time to work on them during the first part of the year, and lose interest by the time I get to the second.  So, yeah.  I had a lot of fun picking out projects and planning wardrobes, but, at the end of the day, they just haven't ended up being practical for my schedule.  Ah, well.  Maybe someday I will have more "me" sewing time again, and I can go back to having sewing challenges and wardrobe plans.