Moving On: The Sewing World in 2010 and My Hopes for 2011

One of my favorite-est sewing websites, Sew, Mama, Sew, is inviting readers to reflect on the sewing world in 2010 and to predict where it’s going in 2011. And because, of course, I love to state my opinion, I’m joining in. Read on and share your thoughts on your own blog if you’re an outspoken, opinionated sewist, too!

Looking back on the sewing scene of 2010, what trends stand out in your mind?
I believe that the biggest trend in sewing in 2010 wasn’t confined to sewing; it’s been sweeping every part of life in the United States. Throughout this past year, there’s been an incredible emphasis on and appreciation of things “handmade.” We are learning to cast aside consumerism and value that which is personal and sustainable. People who have never sewn before are picking up needle and thread and crafting items for themselves, for their family, and for their friends, and the result has been beautiful and heartwarming.

What were some of your favorite things? (Trends, fabric collections, patterns, blogs? Whatever you really loved.)
My favorite things have been, of course, “Sew, Mama, Sew” and using knits. Knits, knits knits. I’m obsessed. My favorite source for children’s knits is Chez Ami, especially the clearance section!. Two other sewing websites that I adore are Pattern Review and Burdastyle. And then there is, of course, my blogroll, which I know you’ll want to peruse at your convenience.

What was your very favorite fabric collection or print? (If not listed above.)
Oh, Tufted Tweets, of course! I adore this fabric collection. I want to wallpaper the backs of my eyes with it. I don’t know why, but I love the graphic nature of it, the colors, and the little bit of whimsy and humor in it. It’s fantastic!

What was the best thing you made in 2010? (Be sure to share a photo!)
Well, I don’t know about my best thing, but my favorite thing was my daughter’s birthday quilt. I gave it to her the day she turned one, and it’s made up of scraps of fabric from projects I worked on from when I became pregnant with her up to that day. Oh, and it’s all polka dots, of course. Here’s a picture of the top:

And here’s a link to the final product: Birthday Blankie Complete

Although the Birthday Quilt is my favorite thing I’ve made this year, the most popular items by far on my blog have been my Summer Necessity Swimsuit Tutorial and my post, Four Kids, Four Quilts, on the meaning of quilting and its uniqueness as an art form.

What is one of the best things you saw that was made by someone else?
Oh my goodness, there are so many. I love everything that has been featured on Burdastyle. For a bunch of inspiration, visit their Albums. Some specific pieces I adores are This, This, This, and can you believe These? There is really so much that I loved. I’m awed by the amount of amazing talent that is out there!

What do you think 2011 has in store? (Again, trends, fabric, patterns, etc.)
I think 2011 will continue the anti-consumerism trend. However, I think, as far as sewing goes, we might see a return to more complicated garments; we’ve been focused on linen and cotton and clean lines and simplicity that it’s time for a bounce back to a little bit of opulence. I think we’ll see more retro sewing; the 60′s are so very hot right now! Maybe we’ll even revisit the polyester of the past. I think we’ll see much more retro/modern fabric released; we sewists are tired of endless florals. We want graphics, we want bold, interesting designs! For patterns, I hope we’ll end the glut of bag patterns that are out there and that the designers that we love will take chances and come out with more clothes. That’s just my hope, though; bags are easy, and obviously they work. I would love to see more patterns for knits out there; I think the Big 4 pattern companies are realizing that finally, even though Burda has been publishing good knit patterns for ages.

Anything you’re ready for the sewing world to get over?
Whoops, I guess I already mentioned that. Please, Amy Butler and everyone else like you, will you stop coming out with more bags? You know we love them, but once you have one pattern you like, you really don’t need another one whose only difference is a few pleats. Also, end it with the florals! Give us straight lines and angles and eye-popping, soul-stirring beauty. And all you sewists out there — simple linen is beautiful, but let’s get a little fancy! We need some details, some sparkles and ruffles and grommets and buttons and contrasting thread. We’ve been holding it in too long, and it’s time to let our creativity run wild!

What’s on your sewing agenda for 2011? What are you excited about? What would you like to learn more about?
I received a dress form for Christmas, so I’ll be working hard to learn how to really fit a garment and hopefully, to create my own. I’d love to see more focus in the internet world on making clothes. Real, usable, everyday clothes that we love and our kids love and that bring out our beauty. Fewer crayon rolls, more t-shirts and pants and dresses. Oh, and let’s focus on FABRIC, people! I hope the blogging world will leave the cotton cage it’s in right now and teach people how to work with ALL kinds of fabric. I mean, right now, working with thin knits and leather and satin increases our “tension,” if you know what I mean (ba-dum-pshhhh!). We as sewists need to know how to tackle everything that’s out there; show us a project in leather and one in canvas, etc., etc., and watch us grow.

Thanks for reading everyone! Now bring on 2011 in the sewing world!

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1 Response to “Moving On: The Sewing World in 2010 and My Hopes for 2011”


  1. 1 Anna December 28, 2010 at 11:06 am

    I too hope we get over cotton! All I can buy within an hour of home is cotton. Most rural sewists seem to believe that they are quilters and not sewers. I don’t understand the big leap between sewing and quilting. Just curvy lines and different fabrics. New techniques never hurt anyone!


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