My #2018MakeNine Picks

I’ve been busy.

Making plans.’ She nods head sagely.

You see I’ve decided to participate in #2018MakeNine.

I mostly think I can do it.

For the record, A Colourful Canvas documents things I’ve made, not things I want to make. There’s a reason for this. I rarely go in with a plan. And when I do, I sometimes feel more of an obligation to the task rather than an enthusiasm for the possibility. So. Unless I sew each of my nine makes in the next month, there is the distinct possibility this tidy little grid will self implode.  What I want to make today….or think I want to make today….may be quite a different story six months down the road.

That being said, one of my current sewing goals is to build a more wearable wardrobe. I’m quite comfortable with the reality that this requires some forethought and…dare I say…at least a little bit of planning. Nope, not scared at all.

This isn’t meant to be a challenge challenge. Personally, it feels more like I’ve checked google maps before driving out of the driveway. Choosing nine has given me confidence….and a sense of direction.

Last year I questioned if my stash was hindering or helping. Throughout the year I made a pretty solid effort at sewing from my hoard. This year I intend to continue that mindfulness. The plan is that a minimum of nine of my makes will be made with fabric from my current stash.

All righty….in no particular order….my #2018MakeNine

2018, the year for a new Sophie Swimsuit! I bought this tropical print fabric years ago in Maui. I’m looking forward to doing some pattern blocking with navy, red and white. It’s ironic, but after all my efforts to make the perfect Sophie Tankini I ended up loving my one piece suits a hundred times more.

Last year I made two Bonnie Bucket Bags and I always get the most wonderful compliments on them. Both bags are in constant use all fall/winter. This year I want to add to my handmade bag collection with either the fun Lola Handbag by Swoon Patterns or the Boronia Handbag by Blue Calla Patterns. I’ve got both patterns, but I’m leaning towards sewing Lola first. My fabric is a fun gold polka dot vinyl. I suspect sewing the vinyl will be a royal pain, but I’m determined to give it a go.

Okay…this happy stretch cotton sateen was fabric that I bought last year from Blackbird Fabrics. Caroline had an open house one summer evening and I was able to not only meet Caroline and many other lovely makers, but to also see first hand the high quality of her fabrics. I bought two different prints….I’ve already made a pair of Gaston Pants {yet to be blogged} and I keep pulling out this pretty print, never quite sure what to make with it.  Until now.  Sasha Trousers for the win. 

Lara Sanner has recently released another sewing pattern for adults. It’s the Truffle Coat and it’s at the top of my Make Nine list. Remember my Birds on a Branch Minoru Jacket? I love it so much but it’s becoming ever so shabby.  I think the Truffle Coat will be a great replacement, not that I could ever really replace my Minoru. Just like last time, I’m using Fabricland home decor designed for outdoor use fabric.

You’ve heard of lingerie month…how ’bout lingerie year? I’ve got scads of supplies and want to sew some lovely bra and underwear sets this year.  I bought the Boylston Bra this past fall… the wrong size. I’m close to making it work using sister sizing…but I may end up buying the larger size range. I also downloaded the free Maya Bra pattern and it’s working out really well. I’ve modified the Sophie Swimsuit bottoms slightly for underwear. The fabric in the photo, a pretty Art Gallery knit, is just one of many that I’m looking forward to sewing into lingerie.*

I think I’m in love with Tilly and the Buttons. It may have something to do with re-watching Season One of The Great British Sewing Bee, it may have everything to do with her patterns making me happy. I’ve had this dark wash denim in my stash for years. Another thrift store find…its destiny….a Cleo Dungaree Dress. I’ve made the pattern up once already {not yet blogged} and seriously….I want to make all the Cleos.

Up next. the Coco Dress, also by Tilly and The Buttons. I’m drawn to the slightly retro flair that is Coco.  I bought this dark navy striped knit for next to nothing because it’s over-dyed. I thought…no problem….but, well, it’s really over-dyed. I’ve worked super hard at getting the excess out and I think I’m almost there. My hands aren’t turning blue….that’s gotta be a good thing, right? What I plan to do at this stage, is to cut and sew the garment and then do a final rinse out. That way I’ll have way less fabric to deal with. Wish me luck on this one. If it doesn’t work, I’ll consider it a fit muslin.

I can’t say no to blue and white striped…anything. This luscious fabric is from La Mercerie in Seattle and it will have a future life as a Hemlock Tee. The Hemlock is a free, yes I said free, Grainline pattern available for download to newsletter subscribers. Bonus: I think I will have enough fabric to make a second t-shirt with short sleeves.

There is an element of risk with keeping a fabric stash…fabric can fade or darken along fold lines. I’ve had this blue and white woven fabric for years and I pull it out pretty regularly for a close look. So far, no fade lines…but this needs to be sewn this year. It’s always been destined to become a coat, but choosing the pattern has been a challenge. I want a one piece set-in sleeve….it makes lining up those wide stripes easier. I have the slightly retro Ellsworth Coat pattern by Christine Haynes lined up here. I quite like the pattern but I’m not yet 100% sure. Also on the table…my Pink Paisley Coat pattern, Simplicity 2256. And….Grainline’s Yates Coat, a new release. Suggestions?

Not the best lighting in this photo…but this navy and white randomly polka dotted fabric had me at hello. I couldn’t not buy it. I was originally thinking of making an oversized shirt…maybe the Kalle Shirt…but when I draped myself I wasn’t feeling it. I think it wants to be a Charlie Caftan. My Charlie Caftan was one of my most worn makes last year and I think these dots would just sing as a Charlie. I’m just wondering if it might look too wrinkly too quickly. I have a second pattern that I’m considering….the Penny Dress by Colette Patterns. I bought this pattern at the release date and I think it would also be a very good option.

Before I sign off, I want to give a special shout out to Rochelle New of Lucky Lucille. The #2018MakeNine is her project and I’m grateful to be participating in her gentle challenge.

  • Funny, but…I just noticed that I have ten #2018makenines. LOLOL. The lingerie snuck into the post but didn’t make it to the make nine grid. 


  • Reply Irene January 31, 2018 at 8:09 pm

    Great plans! Looking forward to seeing the results. Seeing your colourful makes always puts a smile on my face.

    • Reply Sue January 31, 2018 at 9:41 pm

      Thanks so much Irene! Ironically, many of my Make Nine are blue, or blue and white, LOL. I guess I like my basics in blue.

  • Reply Priscilla Bettis February 1, 2018 at 9:31 am

    This is going to be great, and I’m excited to see the results as you finish each piece. I’m glad you included a bag. Home sewn bags always come out so unique and fun looking. They make a whole outfit smile.

    • Reply Sue February 1, 2018 at 10:19 am

      What a great perspective Priscilla! I agree…often times my handbag is my favourite accessory!

  • Reply fran February 1, 2018 at 9:34 am

    you are going to be a busy lady this year!!!!

    • Reply Sue February 1, 2018 at 10:20 am

      Well, potentially yes, LOL. I actually made a lot more garments than nine last year, but I didn’t make any coats last year. I don’t find them more difficult to do, but they do often take more time.

  • Reply Louisa February 1, 2018 at 11:11 am

    I recommend Synthrapol detergent for helping with the excess dye washout. You can get it from Maiwa (or I can give you some if you stop by next time you’re in town).

    A very “Sue” collection. You’ll have much fun with all the stripe matching! And I want to know how the bathing suit and underthings work out. So exciting!

    • Reply Sue February 1, 2018 at 1:46 pm

      OH….Awesome, thanks so much Louisa!!! I may get down to Granville Island this weekend. The fabric really is a lovely weight and quality.

      I am LOVING my bra ball/chest piece!!!!! It is sooooo helpful and I find it works well for sleeve heads too! THANKS bunches again to Thom!

  • Reply No Fear of Fashion February 1, 2018 at 8:51 pm

    Very ambitious. But as you say, it is like looking at Google Maps before you start the journey. Very wise, very clever. I am looking forward to seeing all your treasures. Sewing lingerie must be the hardest thing ever I think.

    • Reply Sue February 2, 2018 at 12:07 pm

      Yes…it could very well prove to be too ambitious, LOL. But…I remind myself it’s not necessarily about the completion of every garment. For me it’s more about the potential of a cohesive and wearable handmade wardrobe.

      Honestly, sewing lingerie is the hardest swing challenge I’ve ever done. I’m looking forward to writing about it…cathartic perhaps. 🙂

  • Reply Nancy Baten February 2, 2018 at 12:23 am

    Fantastic to create! Looking forward to see what you made!

    • Reply Sue February 2, 2018 at 12:08 pm

      Thanks so much Nancy! My hope is that these makes will filter down to the blog throughout the year!

  • Reply Nicole February 5, 2018 at 6:12 pm

    Those are some great choices! I wish you well with your stash busting plans! 🙂

    • Reply Sue February 6, 2018 at 10:31 am

      Thanks Nicole! I’m pretty optimistic that, with this plan, I will be successful with the stash busting!

  • Reply Shelley@ForestCityFashionista February 15, 2018 at 6:24 pm

    I’m very impressed with your plans (and your fabric stash). Given that it took me two months after I got my sewing machine to get around to hemming a pair of jeans, I think it will be a while before I attempt to make anything more complicated. I love that fabric you are going to use for the Truffle Coat!

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