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A #2017MakeNine Conversation with Alex

A #2017MakeNine Conversation with Alex

Alex here, joining the blog-o-sphere today presenting the ever-popular hashtag #2017MakeNine. Have you seen this hashtag floating around? It's considered the maker version of the 'Best Nine' tagline where you choose your top nine Instagram posts for the year. The idea is simple really: you choose nine projects or patterns you'd like to sew during the year. Seems simple enough, right? Now the hope is that these aren't the only projects you do during the year, but it's more of a guideline to build from. 

​Now, if I were a complete Type-A personality, this would totally be my thing. However, my not-so-Type-A tendencies still have me excited about this kind of added organization and structure to my sewing room. I'm usually a one-project kind of person where I think of my sewing project once I get inspired. I can't handle too much planning and I certainly can't plan out my entire year with sewing projects. But if I use these projects as my foundation and I build from there, at least I can start out with a goal of nine garments. Now, most blogs or posts you read about last year's Make Nine projects mention that they didn't finish the full nine project series and there's definitely no shame if you don't finish. Phew....but, hey, let's go for it.

What I love most about #2017MakeNine is that people are working towards an entirely me-made (handmade, personally sewn) wardrobe that expresses and builds on their style yet at the same time tries techniques they maybe haven't gone after before. I love wearing handmade garments for many reasons but one being that on some level it makes my clothes extra special because every garment has a story. 

I want to have my most successful year of sewing yet, and I'm excited to share some project ideas with you all. Join in with #2017MakeNine. I'd love to hear. 

This has been on my to-do list for some time now, so why not put in my #1 slot in hopes I get it done quicker? 

Imagine: the Bristol Top in a comfy, sweatshirt-like variation. I can already tell you it will be a year round go-to garment for me. This French Terry Grey Heather fabric is the perfect blend of sophistication. 

The most recent pattern, the San Diego, includes three variations of the pattern in one! This tunic version is my favorite and can be done in so many fabrics. Linda made the pictured variation in a beautiful Ponte double knit, but it's also been made in silk, linen and cotton.

I'm waiting on a particular sea green knit fabric, or what do you think this would look like in scuba or metallic option?

I've been dreaming of this throwback pattern, the Salsa Blouse,  for a while now, and I already had it in my mind to make a knit variation only to find out that Kathy Davis had already beat me to it and made the one pictured above. Okay...so this may not be the most original idea ever, but I'm still swooning over making my own in an Alabama Chanin bright red, or even a bright pink knit! I was thumbing through InStyle magazine the other day and saw tons of outfit pairings that included bright red and bright pink...together...in the same ensemble. I loved it and it also became part of my inspiration for #7, a red Lotus Skirt (hopefully to be paired with a bright pink something!).

I know, I know, I've already put the San Diego on my list, but when we say it's a versatile pattern, we really mean it. C'mon, this Bomber Jacket version is amazing! and I can't wait to get this one started. 

Stay tuned for more information on this one. Erin is working on this variation to kick-start our January 2017 Sew Confident! program, so you'll learn exactly how to make your very own. 

Haven't heard of Sew Confident? You're really missing out (and I'm not just saying this because it's my mom's company and I work here) because seriously, it can change your life. This year is all about making fun variations of our pattern collection. Plus, you get tons of tips and tricks straight from Linda and the team on all things sewing-related. It comes to you in PDF format so you can digitally swipe your way through better sewing skills - or, print the tutorials out and create your own physical library catalogue! There's still time to sign up

When I make this garment, I envision the garment in a statement Black Sequin or - wait for it - this amazing Lazer Cut Black Floral mesh fabric. Hello, Vogue Magazine!

​The Chateau Coat is coming out very soon, ladies, so set your alarms. Plus, who doesn't love a great textured wool? And pictured here the edges are bound in stripe jersey knit. We've made this coat in other variations such as Scuba and red wool but I'm thinking I'm going to make this exact one that's pictured. Oversized jackets are all over the scene and this pattern will make for a great take on this current trend.

The Helix Pants are my version of the straight leg or skinny pant from our collection. This almost can feel like a nice legging, too, because the fabrics you choose for this pant should have at least 25% crosswise stretch. They pull on with a flat elastic waistband and have front and back darts. 

Fabric choice was easy here. This Sateen Brushed print has been screaming, "Alex, Alex!" ever since I eyed it weeks ago. 

Now, talk about a throwback pattern. This Lotus Skirt is from way back in the day, but one of our 2017 charges is to take this pattern and make it a download pattern because sadly, we've sold out of all the printed patterns. FYI - This will be my job to make it into download format, so you all have full permission to get on me to make this happen. Full disclosure here: I love this skirt and want to make a million of them! This would pair well with so many things but I'm in love with a bright red right now (and, people always tell me I look great in red, but I realized I only have one garment in solid red -- not okay!). 

What's your favorite Sewing Workshop throwback pattern? Get out a pattern from your stash and update it in a new fabric and it will surely turn heads. 

The Zayn Top will be released in February as a pattern download and boy, have we already recieved tons of compliments on it. We've tried it in  light fabrics like this beautiful Polyester Crepe print or even more structured fabrics like the Sateen Brushed print we saw in #6. I think I'll try both. 

Alas, the final garment. 

I was at the gym the other day along with everyone else who made aspiring, healthy New Year's resolutions, and noticed how many were wearing hoodies to workout in. Sounds hot and awful to me, but with 'athleisure' taking off this past year, (Merriam-Webster even added it as a word!) I wonder what kinds of variations can be done with our patterns to accentuate this style?  In my magazine scrolling, I've seen the bomber jacket / hoodie trend time after time and want to see what the West End Top will look like with a closed front - no zipper - to really sport-it-up. Maybe in the Heathered Grey knit from #1 or a more colorful French Terry? Thoughts?  



I know I'm throwing all kinds of loops at you guys: No Chateau Coat yet, a downloadable Lotus, a Bomber Jacket tutorial, but hey - this is a great look at the things to look forward to from us for this upcoming year. We're excited for all that 2017 will bring and hope to see you around. 

Thanks everyone for joining me and my #2017MakeNine dreams and aspirations. Will I put this into action and make it happen this year? I sure hope so. We all know I've got some work to deliver to you.


Sew Confident 2017: Variations with Verve!
Fashion Fabric Facts: Sewing with Scuba

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