But, this year, I have actually managed to do a couple of spring tops for the sewalong. Well, I managed to make some tops, and there's a sewalong going on. But I think I was trawling the flickr feed and saw Colette patterns that looked pretty, had a look on their site and came up with the Sorbetto. Free. Lovely. Can totally be made with men's shirts ($1 a piece at a yard sale near you).
One of these days I will get round to paying actual money for a pattern, but for now, getting around to doing some sewing feels like an accomplishment.
I made the US14, as I'm still pretty chunky, but it's actually too big, so I need to stick some darts in the back. Other lessons learned: When the pattern says 'stay stitch', stay stitch. Because I didn't the neck line gapes a bit. I really must get the darts in before the weather warms up.
The second one is the same pattern, but with the facings on the outside (which is actually what the pattern suggests) and I sewed a line of bias tape on either side of the pleat so it looks like piping. This is a US12, which fits a lot better, but the bust darts are a bit high, so I might have a third go, although I'm out of shirts for now. Lessons learned with the Mark 2: Don't sew (or photograph) teeny tiny gingham. My eyes felt like I'd been staring at magic eye pictures (remember them?) all day by the time I'd finished.
I'm in the fortunate position of not really being on a tight budget, but even so, it feels pretty good to have made two tops for a couple of bucks, as well as to have repurposed two old shirts. The fabric is lovely, and I don't think I would have thought to make them without the design constraints imposed by repurposing as opposed to designing from scratch, something that just feels intimidating really.