I blame the caffeine high…

…for finally tidying up. Sewing has been going rather slowly – there’s been a few tedious projects, then the hickup with the sewing machine, and then the fact that my sewing space was a mess. I’m not the tidiest person, and things had gotten a bit out of hand. Now, lots of people are quite tidy with their sewing spaces, it appears. Not me. Which is why it was one of my new year’s resolutions to have a tidy sewing space. And up until now, I thought of this resolution occasionally, then whole-heartedly ignored it.

This morning, there was a shift in the time-space continuum confluence of factors which led to me tidying up. I promised to make the boyfriend a coat, and didn’t have any space which was bugging me; we’re moving house soon and I needed to tidy up in general; the alternative was to write an academic article (I still dislike it), and, lastly, a massive caffeine high, which meant I was unable to sit still.

To entertain you, and make you feel better about whichever mess monster has taken over your sewing area, I took a before/just started picture:

The desk. And yes, some of this I had just dumped there, but really, it wasn't better before at all.

The desk. And yes, some of this I had just dumped there, but really, it wasn’t better before at all. And yes, the calendar is still on August.

The shelf with a million ugly shoeboxes. That's what it felt like. The fabric is not in the picture - I think it's all on the chair. Classy, Thea!

The shelf with a million ugly shoeboxes. That’s what it felt like. The fabric is all on the chair. Classy, Thea!

You can pay particular attention to the amount of boxes stashed away, if you want. After about three hours of sorting through boxes with small scraps of fabric (why did I keep so many completely unusable scraps in the first place?), it now looks a lot better:

Look, less boxes! I promise I didn't just hide them underneath the desk. And look - I might actually sit in the chair now!

Look, less boxes! I promise I didn’t just hide them underneath the desk. And look – I might actually sit in the chair now!

Space for sewing. Phew!

Space for sewing. Phew! Umm, and you can see the pile for the bin in the hallway. Wooops.

And because I’ve been struggling to remember what I want to do with which fabric and in which order, I’ve catalogued the majority of them. This is not a wishlist – just plan for myself to check back when in doubt as to what to tackle next. I should probably also write a wishlist.planning and tidying with writingI didn’t realize I had quite so many projects ready to go – apart from the bottom line, I have everything ready for all the other makes – including zippers, interfacing, closures…

The Cambies are a split between want it now, and want it next summer. The grey lace overlay with purple I think will make a nice smart winter/autumn dress; the white/blue fabric is a swiss dot (?) from Goldhawk Road. I have lining etc. for both of these, and just need to get my rear into gear, and wait for summer for the white one. The blue fabric for the Anna dress is a viscose. I’m massively late to the party, and have sat on fabric and pattern since July. The fabrics for my Alma, I’ve had for even longer – the grey dots are at least 1.5 years old. I’ve been planning them for a long time, but keep not starting it. I mean, it’s such a quick project – but somehow, it doesn’t excite me enough to make me actually cut it out. Embarrassing.

Now, the trouser stuff is actually scary to me, and I’ve prevaricated so much that I’ve bought enough fabric to make three pairs of trousers, in case the first one doesn’t turn out, then I wanted something with stretch, then… I dunno, I was still scared, so bought more fabric? Enough excuses already, chicken – get sewing! The fabric next to it is reassuring to me, because it will be my second Minoru – I’m having a whale of a time planning it in my head at the moment. It’s a grey twill from a random massive second hand store in Germany.

The Ginger Skirt, now really, I should just get on with. Perfect for autumn and all that. Thanks to the nice person who brought the fabric to the last London meetup! The Maria Denmark Pile are lots of jerseys which need to be worked up (embarrassingly, I then found another three pieces in other colours in the office after taking this picture).

Now, the bottom line… The lining for a jacket I originally bought for a T-shirt. But, it gives me a headache when I look at it, so I think I’ll leave that. Now, instead, I want a By Hand London Victoria Blazer in a knit fabric: a) because the very non-scruffy Winnie made it look awesome on scruffy badger, and b) because it means I can get rid of the fabric by using it as lining (so I don’t have to see it. winner). Yes, I know I’m late to that party too.

Hopefully, next time I’m feeling confused, I can consult this list and get sewing. Also, I realized I really don’t need to go fabric shopping for a while (not sure if that’s good or bad!).

Right, and maybe now I should actually tackle that article. Mind you, the kitchen is still messy… Kidding!

Resources I used for my Minoru

This post is really just a way for me to put together the resources I used for my Minoru and the inspiration I had. This way, I can refer back to it in the future, and you can stalk some other amazing Minorus.

First of all, there’s the Minoru sewalong over at Sewaholic. It contains very detailed instructions with a ton of pictures for each step, and is like having somebody hold your hand while you’re sewing, which is awesome. Also, this is where I got the tutorial for the side seam pockets I made.

The idea with the extra front placket, I stole from MissJacksonDesigns here – I really liked her jacket, and her pictures at least gave me a starting point for figuring out how far the placket should come across.

A great deal of inspiration, I also got from simply image searching for ‘minoru jacket’ and then reading up on the amazing jackets I found. There’s some stunning examples out there!

Now it’s getting slightly warmer, I’m already considering whether I should make a second one, without interlining, for cooler/rainier summer days, which we’ll no doubt get. For that version, I would like to adapt it slightly so they don’t look too similar – I’m thinking a brighter/lighter colour, with a few changes. Both Mika and Andrea have recently made a slightly different version, with welt pockets and a different collar – their jackets have come out so beautifully that I want another one! And it would look different enough that maybe people wouldn’t spot immediately that it’s practically the same jacket. Maybe next year…