03 June 2016

Me Made May 2016: Final Week and Conclusions

I only got three photos the last week. It was extremely hot and humid and we had guests for four days so it was tricky making my wardrobe work around that.

Day 25
This is a 5 year old dress now (Simplicity 2591). I made it for a challenge back when the Sew Weekly was still going. I still think it is one of my best fitting and most flattering garments. Beside me is my progress on McCall's 6696. I wanted to finish it to wear on the 31st, but it just didn't happen. I'm also a little disappointed in that it is less flattering than I'd hoped - I think the waistband makes my short torso look extra short. So much for feeling elegant and cute like Betty Draper. Should I have known better? Yes. Waistbands are why I also usually don't end up wearing skirts and I don't think any of my dresses incorporate them.


Day 27
 I was so excited to be able to wear this. It is one of my favorite makes, but the high cut neckline and longer sleeves make it a bit warm. I haven't blogged it so I'll go ahead and do a quick blurb. It is Simplicity 6912, from the 1960s, a junior pattern with a matching bag and head kerchief. The whale fabric was an Ebay purchase and the Spongebob licensed ball fringe was from JoAnn's. It coordinates a little better in real life as some of the balls are green, not yellow. It is a bit more snug this year but the french seams made for a delightful fit with no alterations when I originally made it. I've found a regular misses size pattern that is similar if I ever want to attempt this style again.


Day 31
It's over! And for the most part I succeeded, surprising, given how many me-made garments I've donated. I celebrated by wearing my new Hey June Lane Raglan.

Lessons Learned
1. Stick to my color palette. 
I really do know what colors I prefer. But sometimes a pretty fabric (especially prints) get the better of my judgement. While I don't want to eschew such things completely, I want to buy them in mind with projects not for me. For example I can do home dec projects or sew for my American Girl Dolls with them.While this will probably leave me with a closet of almost exclusively blue things, I really never get tired of blue. To illustrate... 

Flattering Color Choices (and good hair days):
Unflattering Color Choices (and bad hair days):

2. Make garments more like what I would buy at the store.
Not to put down hand made or unique garments, but if I want more wearable me-mades, I am more successful when I look at a pattern and ask myself if I would buy that garment at a store. Why do I keep thinking just because I made it it will automatically be more flattering or fit my style? Too often I am attracted by a fun illustration or the idea that I will look like the model instead of being realistic about my body type. The Hey June Lane Raglan and the underwear I made this season was a great step in that direction.

3. In conjunction with above, sew more consciously of my body's shape and what is flattering to it.

Happy Me Made May! How was your experience?

29 May 2016

Me Made May 16 Week 3

I've halfway met my goal for MMMay16: I made one thing! And I'm still plugging away on my shirtdress, so hopefully that will get done too.

Day 16 and 17: On the 16th I buckled down and sewed up the Hey June Lane Raglan. My sewing mojo was very low at this point - two weeks of looking at 5 year old makes that don't fit anymore (or never did) and that are not styles I wear anymore was Bumming. Me. Out. I felt like I didn't have a good enough grasp of my style to make things I would wear and that I was a failure at fitting. This is doubly depressing when you are a costume designer for a living.
With some trepidation I cut into my precious, discontinued Girl Charlee fabric and hoped for the best as I didn't make a muslin or any adjustments. Turns out I got lucky! I could nitpick - the sleeves need a little hemming and could stand to bit a bit more fitted but overall it is comfortable, flattering, matches clothes I already own and definitely fits in my color palette without being boring. AND IT WAS A STASHBUST!!!! ALL THE WIN!!!!
And just for the record, I sewed a medium with no FBA. I had read lots of reviews before attempting this pattern and even though I am a DD cup, it sounded like the FBA was designed for ladies more endowed than myself. If I make it again I might go down a size, if I was using a more stable fabric or making a rash guard from it and then I might try the FBA. As it is, this shirt is a great everyday shirt or could even be made to be a sleep shirt.

Day 18: I wore my striped psychedelic pants from Simplicity 2373 then my me-made socks again later when it got chilly.
These pants stay in my closet because I really enjoy them, but in all these years I have yet to find a top that I feel actually matches and flatters them.

Day 19: The 1940s cycling outfit made its second appearance for biking to the college.

Day 20: This is a 1970s pattern, McCall's 5145 in delicious linen. It was getting hotter out so I mowed the lawn in it. Then I got my letter of acceptance to go back to college!

20 May 2016

MMMay 2016 Week 2

 Here's the week two round up!

Day 10: Simplicity 5935 ca. 1980s "Prairie Dress". I keep forgetting to add the hook and bar it needs at the waistline.

Day 11: Went out to dinner. Thought I might wear my (still unblogged!) Colette Macaron, but it was too dressy and warm, so James wore his Negroni and I carried my leather purse. The nice thing was that when I put on the Macaron I actually really liked it. I did not feel so affectionate toward it when I first made it years ago.

Day 12: 1940s bicycling 0utfit from Simplicity 1554 and 4981, both 1940s patterns. Worn out cycling around the town.

Day 13: Flannel Peasant Shirt again.

Day 14 and 15 were unfortunately skipped, because all day was spent sanding down the floors at the new house in junk clothes.

Halfway Thoughts
I don't have a lot of layering, every day pieces. I tend to like making "statement pieces", especially in prints that I wouldn't normally find in RTW - I think it is okay to have a few of those pieces, but if I really want to wear more me-made I need to make more things that look more like my every day wardrobe. In fact, sometimes it is easier to buy funky pieces because my body is so hard to fit that I have no ides what a new silhouette or shape will look like on my body - and if I spend a bunch of time sewing it and don't like it, that's a bummer and a waste.

11 May 2016

MMMay 2016 Week 1

Not the best photos ever, but with the combination of rain and Ipad camera I can't have very high expectations. Days with no description are days when I just wore me-made underwear. James is doing his part and wearing his comox trunks regularly.

Day 1: Wrenna sweater from French Girl Knits, worn to the Farmer's Market.

Day 2: Simplicity 2415 (made in 2010!) An oldie but goodie.

Day 3: Victory Pattern's Lola worn hiking with the dog. This piece needs some tweaking in order to stay out of the donate pile - the armbands are too tight and the upper back is much too wide.

Day 4: I wore my lemon drop tunic as well as an apron made from a 1950s "cobbler apron" pattern.
Day 5: I repeated my outfit and wore my lemon drop tunic.

Day 6: Finally warm enough to wear my Madeline Bloomers, then I switched to a 1970s McCall's Marlo Thomas blouse. This is really too short (especially with my current weight - my pudge sticks out the bottom) and doesn't look good tucked in so I think it will be donated after this. I love the look of it - until I see it on me in the mirror! If I ever lose enough weight, it is a really easy shirt to re-make and I'd prefer it in a lighter weight fabric anyways.

Day 8: I got cursed with a nasty end of season cold so I spent the day in my wooly, me-made socks. I spent a lot of my sick time knitting on my hitch-hiker shawl. I'm on point 19 out of 42 but I think I'll run out of yarn before 42.

08 May 2016

Etsy Shop (Vintage Patterns) Moving Sale

Yes, we're moving AGAIN. I'm tired of lugging these patterns around, so you get 40% off your purchase with the coupon code MOVINGSALE
Link to my Etsy Store...and a few images to tempt you there!





Folks Serv