2021 Make Nine: The Plan

Today is the sixth anniversary of starting my writing here, a fact I don’t want to think too deeply about because then I would have to confront how many wildly ambitious plans I had when I began that have never come close to fruition, how many projects I’ve abandoned or never started, how little actual writing I’ve managed to produce…

But we’re not dwelling on that, because I know my work (or let’s face it, lack thereof) speaks for itself. Let’s forget all about the old plans, shall we? Who needs them when we can make new plans to fail to follow through on instead!

Below are the nine kinds of projects I’d like to tackle in 2021. I’m sure I’m not the first to take a broad-based rather than pattern-specific approach to the Make Nine challenge, and I’d be lying if I pretended I haven’t started auditioning patterns and fabrics for various roles. I’m hoping that this looser set of guidelines, where just about every block in the grid can be satisfied by at least two projects—and more often than not ones I already have supplies for—will make it so that it’s basically impossible not to hit at least a few of my targets.

A three-by-three grid showing nine types of garment sewing projects

  1. Top, shirt, or blouse – Right now the thing I find myself reaching for most often is fitted long-sleeve t-shirts, and I would love to have two or three more to choose from. I’ve also thought about making a flannel or chambray button-up as a layering piece.
  2. Something denim – I have multiple pairs of Justin’s worn out jeans in a bin that I want to take apart and reuse. It’s a three-way tie between a jacket, a mini-skirt, and a pair of short overalls.
  3. Leggings or joggers – Look, I know I said I was going to wear real clothes this year, and I’m aware there’s plenty of disagreement about whether either of these items fit that description. I’m definitely aiming for something that’s appropriate to wear to the grocery store, but at the end of the day, I need more comfortable bottoms for all of the time I spend folded up in a chair at home.
  4. Something flannel – I have enough leftover flannel from making these pants (out of commission due to a shredded seat) to make another garment, as well as flannel earmarked for a pair of his-and-hers pajama pants.
  5. Underwear – Most likely a bra, as Justin treated me to the Pin-Up Girls T-shirt Foam Cup Bra pattern and an accompanying fabric and notions kit to go with it. I also have several Madalynne patterns in my stash that I’d like to have a go at. I also like the idea of having matching smalls, though it remains to be seen whether I’ll actually want to do the work once I land on a pattern I like (I know a lot of sewists find the reward doesn’t feel worth the effort.)
  6. Pair of pajamas – I’m in need of a replacement for the aforementioned pajama pants, but also have a couple of more summery patterns like Tilly’s Fifi pajamas would be useful during our sweltering and humid summers when the AC just can’t keep up.
  7. Something refashioned – There’s a sheath dress folded up in my office that I’ve effectively sewed three times and in so doing ruined the armholes, and I know I should cut it down into a skirt rather than get rid of it. I also have a bin of old, tired clothes that I’ve fallen out of love with that I’d like to try to refresh in some way, or that have small stains or holes that can’t be repaired but could be worked into new garments.
  8. Lightweight robe – Think less “I inherited my my late husband’s riches after his mysterious disappearance” and more “I should turn this ripped up bedsheet into a human-shaped drop cloth for the inevitable mess I’m about to make.” Specifically, I need a simple robe to wear while I’m dyeing my hair at home, something that isn’t precious and can get bleached or left stained. I haven’t been back to my stylist to have my hair colored in almost a year, and I’ve resisted doing it myself because the outcome was always only half the point—I liked spending the money to treat myself. But with no possibility of a salon visit on the horizon, I’ve decided my desire for a vibrant red mane has outweighed the need for a ritual.
  9. Wild card – In all likelihood this will be a duplicate of some other category, but I’d like to imagine that I’ll take the leap into something a little more challenging or interesting. Maybe it’s a costume/cosplay for Halloween. Maybe a dip into historical costuming. Or maybe I lose my mind and try for something a little less cake-y and little more high-fashion frosting, like a blouse with a cape or a trench coat dress—who knows? Not me!

I didn’t include any knitting in this plan because quite frankly I don’t find it nearly as difficult to motivate myself to knit, and I’m generally happy with my knitting output where it is. I tend to rotate through shorter/simpler and longer/more difficult projects already, and I don’t have any gaping wardrobe holes I feel I need to fill with knitting (although I do keep thinking about making a new, better pair of gloves).

Who else is making plans and/or tempting fate in 2021? Do tell!

One thought on “2021 Make Nine: The Plan

  1. This looks like a great way of handling it. My struggle with the Make Nine concept has always been boxing myself into certain patterns at the beginning of a year. I mean, what if a great new pattern comes out that I absolutely need in my life, right?! 😀

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