Top 5 Misses of 2016!


Let the games begin! Here’s my next instalment in the #sewingtop5 series!

side view

1. Muse Natalie Dress

Either this pattern or this fabric could have worked as something else… but together, I felt bland. I cut it up and made a tank instead, which, frankly, is also a bit bland and poorly-fitting!

PicMonkey Collage

2. Linen Santa Fe tee

This was the year of trying to add olive green into my wardrobe… and nope, not happening! (I actually have an olive raincoat and carry an olive workbag every day, but turns out it’s my perfect accessory-matches-everything colour but not a colour I love to wear!) I was excited to sew linen knit for the first time, but it’s sheer, baggy, and both drapes and catches on everything underneath. Nope.

Everything Everything Santa Fe

3. Everything Everything Swing Dress

Now also refashioned into a tank! I made this Santa Fe dress inspired by a favourite band’s costumes before going to a performance… but ugh, thin solid neon rayon shows EVERYTHING! I broke my cardinal rule of blogging and wore Spanx for these photos, and still, ugh. A least it got the fabric out of my stash!


4. Types of T-Shirts

Two of the four shirts above began hits, and two became misses! Can you guess which?

The two on the left (a Plantain in cotton knit with a ruffle stripe, and a Kimono tee in heart print rayon) have both been given away. Not bad shirts per say, but I never felt like me when I wore them! More and more, I’m aware that twee is not me, and it’s it’s cutsy or retro, I won’t feel my best.

My Image dress

The honorary 5th: My Image Faux Wrap

Look, if I hadn’t thrown out and forgotten the worst failures this year, this dress wouldn’t make the cut. It’s fine, but very clearly points out how much better this would fit me if it was drafted by Cashmerette! I had to open up the underarm seam and add in INCHES of fabric post-sewing, and the bodice wrap doesn’t sit like it should. But, totally fine, totally wearable!

Here are the things that never made the blog: 

  • a pair of Hudsons in woven fabric, which turned out to be way too polyestery, and ended up looking like the uniform pants I wore to work in fast food in the ’90s. Yeah. Picture that!
  • a pair of wide-legged culottes made from the pants of the Sallie jumpsuit. Cute pattern, NOT MADE FOR PANTS! At one point I decided they fit better backwards… not a good sign! I wore them once to hike outside with my class, and they were perfect for sitting in the dirt because I wanted to burn them when I got home!
  • a bra where I sewed both cups the same size because I was lazy… on consequently it flattens one boob into a downward-facing point with quad-boob on top. Why did I try to save 5 minutes on a 5 hour project?

Here’s to more crazy adventures in 2017! I don’t regret any of these fails, because I had fun sewing them. Except that bra. I regret that!




15 thoughts on “Top 5 Misses of 2016!

  1. Such a fun post Gillian (a brave one too – thank you for that!) I’m glad you saved your fails to share. I almost had a total failure last week (which would have been a terrible blow since I had “Chanin” reverse applique on the upper back and the top of my sleeves in autumn leaves) but I had an in person class here in Victoria with Fern (who is our local sewing teaching Goddess) and she saved my top! Some unsewing involved 🙂 and nips and tucks here and there and voila! I now have the perfect long sleeved Tee. I learned so much from her it was astonishing. The value of in person teaching never to be underrated again. She gave me so much personal help with fitting, what suits me (and doesn’t! there goes a few patterns in my stash!) and a few sewing tips besides. It was an amazing day 🙂 There is this joke here that someone has to die for a spot to open in Fern’s classes. For someone who wants to teach sewing she would be a perfect model 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow, you teacher sounds AMAZING! I don’t know of anyone in this area who has that level of fame, even in Toronto… but how awesome to have someone who can ready read the situation and help make the changes you need!


    1. I quite like it too… but only because the fabric is fun! If it was a solid colour you’d see how awkwardly it fits. 🙂


  2. It was fun to read this post! I agree, the number 3 dress was not for you. I think the olive green suits you very well. But I understand, if you don’t feel comfy in it, then it’s not ment to be.
    I enjoy reading your blog, since I am about the same size as you are. So if some pattern looks good on you, I can try it too. I’m just starting sewing my own clothes and you are very inspirational, thank you!


    1. Oh excellent! I love finding bloggers who re a similar shape to me – so helpful to see how they style things, and how patterns look on them!
      What’s the next project you have in mind for your sewing adventures?


  3. This is my fave segment of this series – because this is what happens when you sew! I’m much more likely to give something away (or chuck it in the bin) than to love and keep it because everything about it is perfect. I think it’s great for all sewists – particularly new ones – to learn this from those of us who’ve been there and done that 🙂


    1. This is definitely the most fun of the roundup posts! Because even I forget all the crap I’ve made, and it’s so comforting to know other people make duds too.
      How’s the job going? I’m thinking of you!


    1. The linen was a real letdown! I’m happy I managed to pick it up locally though – would have been much sadder if I’d paid top dollar online! 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  4. These are interesting choices. I can empathise with the Natalie dress. I have a top with that kind of front and it makes me look pregnant. I loved that fabric though. I thought all your t-shirts were fabulous. Loving the fabric in your last dress. Xx


  5. I liked the olive green top. I laughed when I read the bra cup post about saving five minutes on a five hour project. I have to keep telling myself how much I’ve invested in this so far and slow down. It may have become my mantra. But you say it too often and then you take no short cuts and it seems like the project never gets done!


  6. Clearly I have no idea because I picked the 2 Tees you don’t like as the best! I wonder if as we become better sewists the need to create with class and longevity outweighs the need for ‘fun’ prints. I never buy those kinds of clothes so why is that fabric in my stash for goodness’ sake? Its almost like we see potential makes for their sea lines and cut as we get better, no longer needing the distraction of fun prints or something?
    Everything you do for the sewing community, your inspiration/stimulation ideas, CSC, all the makes, the photography episodes – all help to improve sewists and I think we’re all getting better together. Thank you most sincerely Gillian. Merry Christmas, hope you enjoy a well deserved rest.


  7. So I guess olive isn’t your colour. LOL. It’s too bad these didn’t work out/get worn but it’s all part of the journey, isn’t it? Love these posts. Merry Christmas!


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