fail friday :: a visit from *no big dill*

welcome to the december version of ‘fail friday’.  I am so excited to be able to keep going with this series!  fail friday, if you don’t know, is a chance to showcase and celebrate sewing and crafting failures.  life is messy and so are things behind the sewing machine sometimes.  too often, the dazzling world of blogs can get a little, well, perfect.  fail friday is a chance to own up to mistakes and discuss how, many times, they are actually really valuable to the creative process.  and, maybe those mistakes are even the gateway to something even better!

 if we will be quiet and ready enough, we shall find compensation in every disappointment. ~henry david thoreau

that is certainly the case for this week’s guest blogger, katy dill from no big dill.  katy is not only a talented, talented sewer she also balances prolific sewing with parenting 6 kids and cooking like a pro.  check out her recipes here and her incredible sewing tutorials here.  she also runs a fantastic sewing series called once upon a thread, which features children’s clothing inspired by children’s books.  quite a magical combination, right?  I’m so excited she agreed to join fail friday! welcome katy:


Friday Fail is such a great series idea because we all have failures, even Martha Stewart.  In fact, sometimes I find myself liking and appreciating the results from “failures” because it pushes me to come up with creative solutions and many times the details I include to cover up mistakes are my favorite part of the whole project.  Recently I was making a jacket for my preschooler for the alphabet series on my blog.  Each week they learn a new letter and I’ve been making an outfit that correlates, so there’s not a whole lot of time to make mistakes or I would get behind.

The jacket pattern didn’t include a lining, so I was using the actual jacket to make my own lining and accidentally cut into the fabric about an inch, so the seam wasn’t going to cover it.  I think it was late at night and I just started laughing, and decided to go to bed and think it over. 
The next morning when my wits were more about me, I decided to use some fusible interfacing on the wrong side to keep it from fraying and as soon as the lining was in, I added a decorative ribbon on the outside to cover what was still visible.  Then I added another piece of ribbon, I liked it so much!

The fabric I used for the lining was of mystery content and shrunk a significant amount when I pressed it! so it turned out to be too small once it was all pinned. 

I didn’t have any of the fabric left except for little scraps, so I snipped it right down the center and inserted a box pleat.

 You wouldn’t even know that I hadn’t intended that to be there.

The hole-y ribbons really make the jacket.  And in the end, I find that it’s through mistakes and mishaps when my creativity is really given a chance to work.
Thanks, Melissa, for hosting this great series, and for inviting me to share my “fails” ;).


amazing, right? I wish all my mistakes looked that awesome.  but, I love the way that katy ‘covered her tracks’ and then loved the results! that is why I love fail friday because that kind of thing happens all the time to me! I really do love the path that failure takes me on sometimes.  thanks so much katy!  got a failure to share?! post it to the flickr group and tell your story…I would love to have a collection to share in January!  there is a lot of love in that paragraph.  whew, I am really feeling it today.

8 Comments on fail friday :: a visit from *no big dill*

  1. kristin
    December 7, 2012 at 6:59 pm (5 years ago)

    I love that Katy’s “fail” turned into such a great design element. Gal’s a pro.

  2. Emily
    December 7, 2012 at 7:21 pm (5 years ago)

    I totally agree with Kristin!

    • ahappystitch
      December 7, 2012 at 7:48 pm (5 years ago)

      it’s so true, isn’t it! maybe that define pro…hmmm.

  3. Tanya
    December 8, 2012 at 11:27 pm (5 years ago)

    What beautiful mistakes! This is why I need to sew more, because when I make mistakes like that I don’t even know that there are ways to cover my errors. Katy knows what she’s doing and does such amazing work, even her mistakes look planned. 🙂

    • ahappystitch
      December 9, 2012 at 9:26 am (5 years ago)

      I love that your reaction to this is to sew more! That is the spirit!

  4. Sallie
    December 10, 2012 at 3:13 pm (5 years ago)

    In grad school in home economics (a ver-r-ry long time ago) we were given challenges and had to come up with solutions. One of my favorites was a mistake I had made myself – cutting a dress too short. Happily it was a striped fabric and a wide horizontal band of the same fabric along the bottom solved the problem.
    Yes, necessity IS the mother of invention – and sometimes the answers are better than the original! Love Katy’s creations!

    • ahappystitch
      December 10, 2012 at 3:41 pm (5 years ago)

      I love it! And, personally, I would die for that dress! It sounds so cute.

  5. Delia
    December 11, 2012 at 1:29 am (5 years ago)

    Oh Katy! You are brilliant! I agree…a total pro. 🙂


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