2013 Recap: Sewing for K

Good morning! The end of 2013 is around the corner, so I’ve been looking back on all the clothes I’ve made for K this year, and I’m sort of flabbergasted with myself. Do I not have a life? I made a total of 129 items (!) for K. I’m trying something new and testing out the gallery function for the first time, which is a little funky since you have to click on the image, and then click on another link to get to the original post, but I like being able to see the monthly breakdowns this way.

Without further ado, here is K’s 2013 “collection”:


Total January items: 9

Most worn: Grey wool coat and wide-legged pants. These are still both in heavy rotation. The coat in particular is one of her all-time favorites.

Least worn: Ayashe blouse (K said it was really uncomfortable and only wore it once)



Total February items:  9

Most worn: Oliver + S After School Pants and Mustard Tunic. She actually wore almost everything regularly from this month, but those pants match everything!

Least worn: Pink voile dress. We had an unfortunate washing machine incident and the dress ended up trashed. Such a shame…



Total March items: 10

Most worn: Tiered knit skirt and zip pocket knit top. The skirt has built-in shorts and is much beloved. I was actually surprised by how much K wore the zip pocket top since I thought the pocket linings might be scratchy. The top has shrunk quite a bit, but she still wears it all the time!

Least worn: Teal bow top and flannel grey pants. The linen was too stiff for this design and I think the neckline was a bit too low. As for the pants, the cheap flannel I used for the pants didn’t hold up well at all.



Total April items: 20

Most worn: Popsicle Knit Coat. Hands down, this has been K’s number one loved creation. It’s completely pilling and gross and stretched out by now, but she still wears it every chance she gets. I ended up taking the teeth off of the shark hoodie, and it’s become a go-to wardrobe staple. This was a busy month with KCWC spring, and I attempted to go whole hog. I was very, very tired by the end of the month.

Least worn: Lavender lace dress. That back was too low, and for some reason she never reaches for that dress. I still think it’s pretty, and because it was ginormous when I made it, maybe it’ll grow on her in time.



Total May items: 13

Most worn: Anchor jacket. Need I say more? It would be the thing I would wear most too.

Least worn: Faux rompers. She just didn’t like it. Something about it making her feel like a baby…



Total June items: 10

Most worn: Gold dots knit top and skirt (with built-in shorts). I also made her an infinity scarf out of this same fabric that I never photographed, and I think this ensemble is in the top five for sure.

Least worn: Dungarees/Salopette/Overalls. These shorts created quite an animated discussion, but alas, the thrift store odor proved too much for K, and she never wore them.



Total July items: 16

Most worn: Second only to the popsicle coat, the leopard print coat gets a ton of wear. In fact, she likes anything with any kind of animal print. The green knit top is also a constant fave. What I loved about this month was my personal KCWC challenge to try to sew based on K’s designs. That stripey dress is my all-time favorite.

Least worn: Sadly, the luscious silk halter has not seen the light of day since I made it. Goes to show you that using precious fabric for little ones may lead to disappointment…



Total August items: 7

Most worn: Summer and holiday months are always the hardest times to sew. Still, the tunic and jeggings are worn all the time, so it was a good yield.

Least worn: The crazy adorable Five and Ten Design top. I’m getting the sense that K really dislikes clothes that expose her back.



Total September items: 9

Most worn: The stripey pullover – I really really want one in my size too.

Least worn: The khaki pants from the same outfit. She wore them once to school, had a terrible time with the drawstring waist during a frenzied bathroom break, and refused to wear them ever again.



Total October items: 8

Most worn: Pretty much everything from this month was a winner and is frequently worn. She’s drawn most to the mustard stripes dress, however, which is completely understandable, no?

Least worn: By virtue of being a costume, the owl outfit hasn’t gotten much use. As far as proudest moments go, though, this one is at the top of my list.




Total November items: 8

Most worn: Without a doubt, the bear jammies. Clearly I need to make more of these. The quilted jacket was getting a lot of love too, but then she lost it at school. It happens.

Least worn: The swing skirt is so cute, but still way too big for her, so we’ll wait another year for it to be part of her regular wardrobe rotation.



Total December items: 10

Most worn: Surprisingly, despite having just made the metallic aqua party dress, K has already worn it three times. It’s safe to say she is smitten with this dress.

Least worn: Well, since I’ve just made the dolman sleeve top (self-drafted), it hasn’t even been blogged yet much less worn for a full day. It’s a good basic top, and I’m pretty sure it’ll be a staple.


Whew. Except for three weeks, I made and posted at least one outfit a week for the entire year. Of the three weeks I missed, one was because I was out of town on vacation, one was due to extreme illness, and one was simply bad time management on my part. Am I nuts? Probably.

Some months I was in uber overdrive mode with Kids Clothes Week or with guest posts/blog tours so I made more than I normally would, but when I look at the monthly breakdowns, aside from April, it doesn’t look too outrageous to me. I think back on when I used to buy clothes for her, and I’m almost certain she had just as many garments in her closet/dressers. Maybe I’m just an excessive kind of person all around. But c’mon, kids go through clothes like bulldozers through a manicured lawn. The only marked difference for me is that I used buy in bulk every few months instead of sewing a couple of things a week.

It’s been so incredibly fun. My skills have improved though I still have a long way to go. My two big goals were to become comfortable with sewing knits and to use as many patterns from my Japanese sewing books as I could. I fulfilled both goals. I am, however thinking about how to approach this next year. I won’t have nearly the same amount of time available, and despite my justifications, sewing 100+ garments a year for one child seems…ridiculous. Hmmmm. What do you think? I will have more thoughts on this soon.

For now, I hope you enjoyed looking through the 2013 kid-sized creations as much as I did, and hope you’ll continue to join me on this crazy ride!

32 thoughts on “2013 Recap: Sewing for K

  1. I have been reading your blog for a few months now and it’s wonderful… and inspiring. this is an impressive and beautiful collection of handmade clothes. you are amazing!

    1. Thanks so much, Amy – so kind of you! I do think I may have overdone it a bit, but it’s fun to see all the things I made!

  2. What a great collection! It’s funny what ends up getting worn… the same is true at my house, some things I love they never wear or things they had input on that I think are going to get worn for sure end up being too itchy or fall apart when washed. Oh, well!
    I think after a year of sewing tons for my kids I have decided I’m going to try and focus on just filling gaps for things they need (a much smaller window) instead of just expanding their wardrobes! 🙂 I kinda feel (and they do too) that sewing has overtaken me a bit.
    A note on the swing skirt… I made it as a Christmas skirt for my 9 year old and the fitted look fits a tween to a T. She loves it. I see more of these in other (not so party) fabrics in our future. So I bet that will be something K loves as she grows.
    How was your weekend away? Ours was fabulous. Two nights was perfect, long enough to really enjoy being away, but long enough that I wanted to come back! 🙂

    1. I’ve been thinking about focusing on solely filling gaps too, but I also have so many other patterns I’d like to try…a lot to ponder! Our getaway trip was fairly successful, thanks for asking! K was totally fine until bedtime when she called us teary-voiced (though trying to keep it together) so M and I started to feel really guilty. So glad you had a fabulous time, Kristi!

    1. Thanks Greta! It’s helpful for me to note which ones actually got worn a lot so I know what clothes to put more effort into – the unexpected benefit of blogging about all my creations!

    1. Yay, so happy you’ve been following along! It’s been quite a year for me and I’m hoping I can keep challenging myself in new and fresh ways. 🙂

  3. Amazing! ! It’s great to see them all together like this – you really have a strong sense of style. I love the tunic and jeggings. How does it go for you and your girl, taking that many pictures?

    1. We’ve got the whole photoshoot down to a science. 🙂 Because K is such a routine girl, she’s come to expect the weekly photo sessions, which only last about five minutes anyway. I purposely decided not to try to get all fancy with various locations/backgrounds because I knew that wrestling my little girl all over town would end up in tears for both of us. It makes me happy that you think I have a sense of style! I do love seeing everything together like this.

  4. That’s a very impressive list! and it’s not even including the myriads of outfits you sewed for yourself. Congratulations! I look forward to your next creations. Have a great new year and greetings from Germany xx.

    1. Thank you, Laney! Yes, the adult version of this is coming later this week. Happy, Happy new year to you as well! xo

    1. Wishing you a wonderful holiday season too, Tracy! It’s crazy, isn’t it? When I’m stitching an outfit or two a week, it doesn’t seem like all that much but all together…it makes me question my sanity.

  5. What an impressive recap! I started following your blog at some point near the mid year, so it’s very sweet to glimpse creations from earlier posts. This will all someday be like a diary for you and K of this part of her childhood, as you remember the process of making and then wearing. I say that you should keep the clothes for K coming- especially if it’s a way to cut into that stash! Why not? I am at a point in my life in which the act of making is almost way more important than the actual outcome. And if both things come together, even better. Perhaps it’s something about mothering in the early stages of childhood- we need to do something to feel ourselves as individuals apart from the family life, but at the same time, it is true that we are so deeply tied and connected with the little ones in this moment. This will all one day evolve- for sure- so just dive in and enjoy feeling inspired to create for K (and you).

    PS- the magnet kit arrived yesterday!!!!! Thank you! I felt so happy opening it and dreaming of what to make.

    Happy New Year!!

    1. Oh hooray! So glad the magnet kit made it out to Spain! It’s always a thrill to ship internationally, I must say 🙂 Thanks for your wise input, Gita – I do think I’ll keep going because you’re right: I have some serious stash-busting to do!

      Happy New Year!

  6. So fun seeing everything together, Sanae! you are crazy talented… I’m really just wowed by all of this. I’m pretty sure it was the Mustard-y Kokka tunic from February that had me falling in love with your blog. And I remember loving the AMH blue tunic too, Really beautiful sewing! I look forward to everything you make in 2014! Happy New Year!

    1. Well, I don’t know that I should be called talented since I feel like anyone can sew with enough time and practice, but thank you!! I love your blog so much too, and am so impressed that you and Caroline can work it so seamlessly. Happy, Happy 2014!

  7. Wow, it’s an amazing collection! How come your amount of sewing time will be limited next year? Looking forward to the things you do manage to create!

    1. Many thanks, Nienke! I’m taking on more illustration/client work this year so I can generate more of an income, which sadly means less sewing time. I thought about selling sewn items on etsy, but I know myself and would end up becoming Sanae’s sweatshop, which is not fun for anyone…

  8. There’s not one single garment in those pictures that I don’t wish I could wear myself. The clothes, and k are so beautiful. Congratulations
    Yes, that’s a ridiculous amount of clothing for a kid, but I have exactly the same conundrum as you. The patterns NEED to be made, the fabric is too beautiful NOT to be used. The kids may not always like what we make but we WILL have fun making it.
    Bets wishes for 2014

    1. So so funny, Shelley. Exactly! My husband just shakes his head as I produce yet another outfit — he’s given up trying to convince me to stop sewing clothes 🙂

  9. Sanae, what a breathtaking pictorial synopsis of your 2013 sewing! I would be hard pressed to pick a favorite as they are each so unique and creative. Fun to read which outfits got some wear and which ones were resigned to the “never-to-wear” side of the closet. It’s sometimes hard to predict during the sewing which side the outfit will fall on. K has only to look at this visual summary to see how much love her mama pours into creating for her. And by sharing all your creations, your blogging fans are blessed too!

    1. Thank you, Lucinda! Yes, definitely a labor of love…:-) Another aspect of sewing that doesn’t get talked about which I also forgot to mention is that because handmade clothes are often less sturdy than store-bought ones, they often get tossed into the mending pile. I just finished mending about fifteen garments I made for K, so there’s even more work put into them!

  10. Thanks for recapping your year of sewing. I always enjoy your posts and am inspired to try the Japanese patterns. I love reading about how your Mom influenced your life. I can only wonder what talents K will develop. She’s been guided by one very talented Mom!

    1. Thank you, Barbara! My mom has had a tremendous impact – She really taught me how to look at details/colors/textures and also the importance of being myself. Yes, I’m filled with anticipation to see how K will develop!!

  11. This is such an inspirational post! Thanks for pulling all of these together. I love your style, and I’ve bookmarked this for when I need some ideas for my kiddo.

    1. Thank you very much, Beth! This method of creating a gallery was way easier than my normal Photoshop collages, which was nice 🙂 I’m getting my plans for winter sewing in gear…

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