Sunday, November 11, 2012

Failure and Success

I'm not very good at following patterns. I know that I should be with all the sewing I do but I find it really hard to imagine what the process is supposed to look like and I make lots of mistakes and get very, very annoyed.
So the failure of this story was my attempt at following a Zakka pattern. I though I might make something for the teachers I work with at school. What could be better than a couple of pencil cases? I know that there are restrictions on how much info you can give in a book because each page published is an added expense but I need pictures - lots of pictures. These little fellows were eventually finished but they are not what I envisioned at all, especially their size which was tiny.
The one in the book is gorgeous and it is not to blame, I'm just a bit lacking. 

You can't even fit a normal sized pencil in it and close the flap.
I'm sure I could adapt the measurements now that I've done it all the way through but then I decided that I didn't want to give pencil cases anymore so I'm ditching the idea.
Today was my success story.
I was reading Nikki's blog (You Sew Girl) during the week.
She was wearing a rather neat little apron that I thought I might like to make.
You can have a peek at hers if you go here.
On an impulse I bought the pattern and within seconds I could download it - all 19 pages of it!
I was already cursing myself as I flicked through the pages and trembled at the thought of getting through it all. You see now that I had spent money on it, I had to make the thing. What I noticed with this tome of instructions was that it contained lots and lots of pictures and handy hints for the innocent and inexperienced.
I cut out the fabric last night and set to stitching today.
I won't say it was easy, because for me, it wasn't but I will say that I managed to finish the apron within a few hours and I only made one mistake that took about 5 minutes to fix.
Thank you Nikki for an excellently written pattern that even I could follow.

My photos aren't great. There are 2 zippered pockets hiding inside and lots of compartments which is very handy for money and keys.
I put in zips! Yippee!


  1. When I got my Zakka style book I thought that the instructions weren't very clear, at least not for me (I too need lots of pictures). It's a shame that the cases turned out too small, but I'm sure they can be used for something else (make up brushes for example). Well done with the apron though.

  2. I am another one who needs lots of pictures! I have one of Nikki's patterns and she gives heaps of information and step by step instructions.
    Looove the fabric you used for the apron!

  3. You are courageous and generous to try these patterns for your friends. I've given up on patterns, after having no fun at all with a bag a few years ago. I love what you made, though! Your fabric choices are so much fun.

  4. Your pencil cases are lovely, I hope they can be used after the effort you've gone to and the gorgeous fabrics you've used. Love the apron too.

  5. It is really nice post and the stuff which you shared looking so beautiful.

  6. I love the apron. And I have to say that if you can sew a zipper, you're not "lacking" at all. :-) Those little monsters are tricky. The pencil cases are just adorable. Maybe you could sharpen the pencils until they're shorter? Or try finding pens that fit? It would be a shame to ditch something so cute.


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