It's about exploring and sharing my creative adventures (mostly sewing these days) ~
~those activities that sometimes obsess, usually inspire, occasionally frustrate
~and always provide a delightful maze to wander through.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Bittersweet Blogger Meeting and Send-Off for Amy of Sew Well

The talented Amy of Sew Well is soon leaving us for the far reaches of Seattle, and while we're sad to see her go, we welcome any excuse for a blogger meetup!   Amy and Geana of Britex Fabrics arranged an after-hours champagne get-together at Britex last week where old friends and new friends gathered to share a bit about their sewing obsessions.
Next Row:  Rebecca, Vanessa, Elisabeth of e-bethknits, and Shams of communingwithfabric
Bottom Row:  Beth of sunnygalstudio, Me of here, Kelly of bennomusik and Jean of jkaori
(Sorry, I think I'm missing a blog or two...if you see this, let me know, and I'll add your blog)

If you're confused by my succinct description of who is where in this photo, pop on over to Beth's excellent recap, and she'll unconfuse you lol!

Most (if not all) of us were wearing me-mades, but of course!  We were more interested in chit-chat than taking pictures of clothes, so this small batch of pics will have to suffice, although some other pics may show up on other blogs soon  (hint....)   It was nice to find a couple of new-to-me blogs, and maybe convince some non- or inactive-bloggers to get busy showing off their projects!

We paused for a photo session in front of one of the best window displays in downtown SF, (well, imho, anyway) at All Saints, which is conveniently located right next door to Britex.  :)

We then moved on and let the fun begin at Rouge et Blanc Wine Bar, where much story-telling and big smiles prevailed for the rest of the evening :)
Our friendly server tried to offer us more tables, but we were a cosy bunch,
and preferred to be jam packed and close enough to hear ourselves chat away :)

Did I mention how chatty we were?  I could barely get people to stop and smile for the camera!

Thanks to Amy for taking time from her busy work and packing schedule to arrange this delightful gathering!

I feel very very lucky to live in an area with such an active group of sewists and bloggers!  Sewing Blogger Meetups are always worthwhile, so if anyone has an excuse to gather, let me know!   

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Maxi Dress! aka The Offbeat Creative Process in Action (K Tilton Dress, Take 2)

If you've followed my sewing process for any length of time, you already know that I don't do well with starting and sticking to an actual Plan.   Nope, I'm more of a "here's where I think I want to go but Oh look where that path leads and oh my what is THIS and oops that didn't work let's try over here and oh my what about THAT? and"...well, you get the picture.   I rarely end up where I think I wanted to go when I started.

As is the case with Katherine Tilton, Butterick 5881, Take 2.

Take 1 was here - not too much of a deviation from the original pattern; just a few alterations and embellishments along the way - enough to know that the pattern had loads of creative possibilities!

Originally, I bought 3 linen fabrics that I thought would be perfect for this pattern.   This was a deviation from my norm right off the bat.   Buy a pattern, and then fabric specifically for that pattern?   Seriously, this is SO not my MO!   I buy a pattern because I love something about it, and have some vague image of what I can do with it.  I buy fabric because it feels fabulous on my skin, or the print just wows me, or (in a fit of practical groundedness) I think it will go well with something I have in mind, or will fill a hole in my stash.  I bring it home and wash it and stash it and let it simmer and at some point it jumps up and says "Me!  I'm ready!  Use Me now!"

Did I use the 3 linens I bought for this pattern?  No.   And I probably won't.  I'll just have to wait for them to jump out at me some  time in the future.  Hopefully.  Maybe.

Instead I found fabric in stash for Version #1.   I  LOVE shopping my stash!   I love HAVing a stash to shop in!   I love finding little scraps that are the perfect print to match something and JUST big enough to fill a hole in a color-blocked item - you simply can't find that sort of magic in the overwhelming stacks of a fabric store.  :)

For this version I also used stash fabrics.  I had found several rayon prints in the closeout bin at Piedmont Fabrics a couple of years ago - SO cheap I bought them all!  Combined with a cotton scrap, and a bit of leftover linen from the previous dress, I had some matches I liked :)  I wanted to try a maxi-dress, and there was plenty of fabric, so I lengthened the underdress by 15".  I kept the lower circumference the same, so I lengthened it somewhere below the hip, and adjusted the side seams  accordingly.   I also lengthened  the overdress skirt by about 3", in the same way.

I was really hoping that the drapey rayon would give a sleeker look but it's having a hint of the muu-muu here...

Side View:   Not awful, but not so flattering, really....
Note:  The side seams had not been sewn up yet (because I wanted to insert pockets), 
and I realized that a bit of a side slit might be fun :)

So I thought I would try giving it some shaping around the midriff with some darts.  This involved matching up the 2 layers (underdress and overdress) exactly...not such an easy task!   But I played with it a bit, basting in some darts, an at one point I tried it on inside out....
...and realized that, with a bit of unpicking on the side seams to finish them differently, I could actually have a reversible dress!

I finished the side seams and hems with a narrow hem, topstitched down.   I also went ahead with the midriff darts, but I only put them in on the "underdress", which is now the reverse side.   

Serged side seam:

Turned under and top stitched:

I installed side seam pockets in the same way I did on the original dress, by attaching the opening to the front of the overdress skirt, and patching the other sides of the pocket onto the reverse dress.  This means that the stitching of the pocket shows when the dress is worn reversed, but being black....well, there are advantages to black thread on black fabric...

Then it was a matter of deciding whether to put on the faux placket (again, the stitching would show on the reverse side).   I did it anyway.
And whether or not to put buttons on.   I wanted to use some cute vintage cut buttons, but was concerned that they might bother my skin when it was reversed.  They didn't, so I put them on.
And then it was a matter of installing the neck binding so that it would look good on both sides!   Binding, stitching in the ditch, and having the fold of the fabric precise so that the top stitched side looks perfect is so NOT in my realm of perfection!   Yet.    And of course, I wanted to use black thread on a tan fabric.  (see me rolling my eyes?)   I ended up topstitching the outside, and hoping that the stitching would be buried in the black fabric on the reverse.   It almost worked.   I could have unpicked the offending stitches - I still could, I suppose.   

But I didn't.

And I probably won't.  :D

In my usual meandering way, finally reached the finishing point!   And I have a dress that is really quite versatile :)
The Casual Look:

Dressed up a bit:


Reversed and belted, for a completely different look.

This was a 4-hour project that took me 4 days, but I'm happy with the results :-)

I'm thinking that maybe, just maybe, maxi-dresses rock!   I remember wearing them a lot when I lived in Hawaii - maybe we'll have some lovely weather this summer and fall, and I'll be able to get a lot of use out of this dress.   Perhaps even another one?

Are you a maxi-dress lover?  Do you dress yours up and/or down?  Wear them all year, or only in the warmth?

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Another Week (or so) in May :)

And another successful batch of Me-Mades!   Still loving the process, still exploring and learning more about my closet, my style, and surprisingly, my Self.   Who knew that a simple challenge about wearing clothes could end up being something of a soul-searching journey?  More about that at the month's wrap-up, I'm sure!

Day 18 - relaxing on the porch in Katherine Tilton's Zip T, Vogue 8793
And Trippens.   Can't forget the Trippens!

Day 19 -  It was a sewing day in my hot little attic sewing room!

Day 20 - Oops!  No photo!   Knock around the house in jeans day :) (me-made, but of course)
Day 21 - My new K. Tilton Dress!

Out and about in the evening - with Amy of Sew Well
at a blogger meetup/farewell party to Amy
Wearing the K.T. dress, and my Koos Coat
We're standing in front of the most awesome window display in SF, at All Saints, 
which just happens to be located next to Britex :)

Day 23 - Wearing the very first blouse I made after re-entering the sewing world 3-1/2 years ago!
Decades of Style Collar Confection blouse (pre-blog)
I don't wear this blouse much; MMM forced me deep into the closet.
I think I don't wear it because it's a fairly heavy cotton, with short little sleeves, and it's just not really weather-appropriate for any kind of weather!
I have (hopefully) learned a bit about fabric choices, patterns, 
and putting the two together since then!

Style Arc Linda Pants in corduroy 

Day 25 - Today was a glorious day outside, and I have a project
that needs to be done using the Wabi-Sabi technique I learned recently,
so I wore grubbies (Style Arc Bali Bindi top and rtw pants) and spent the day
playing with silks and dyes :)

There is one more Me-Made week left; who knows what treasures I'll dig up in these last days!

Have any other current or former MMM'ers found that this challenge is far, far more of a self-exploration than you imagined?  Or am I just weird that way?  ;-D

I have one more fun finished project to share (as soon as I get pics taken!), and right now I'm off to work a bit on my wabi-sabi, although the tummy is telling me to eat first...I can get somewhat obsessively wrapped up in a fun project and forget to eat......   I may be weird that way too lol!

Happy Making, everyone :)

Friday, May 24, 2013

Musings on the Creative Process...

Some questions arose recently in conversation about blogs - why we blog, what our "niche" is - and it got me wondering about just what my "niche" is - why do I blog?  What do I have to offer?    Do I even have a "niche"?  What does my voice say, and what does it sound like to others?
I really started this blog with no idea where it would go.  Fellow sewing enthusiasts encouraged me to start a blog, and I thought it would be a great venue to document my sewing journey  - mostly for myself, to keep track of my sewing foibles and successes,  but with the (slightly veiled) hope that others would appreciate what I offered.

I relish a good read and a well-written story.  I've dabbled in, and appreciate, good photography.  I definitely love sewing!  And I thrive on creativity - on many levels.  And I'm always up for a session of sharing - learning and/or teaching.  I also like to practice compassion and encourage open-mindedness/heartedness, a lightness of BE-ing, and a few smiles and even giggles for those I interact with.  I do like to think that my blog utilizes all of those attributes, to one degree or another.  :)

I also realize that I would like to pay more attention to my writing style, as opposed to pounding out yet another post, just because I think I should share this thing that I've created, and maybe somebody out there will appreciate something about it - a helpful tip, an "aha" moment, a lead to an interesting pattern, or maybe just a pat on the back for me.... (hey, who doesn't love a pat on the back every now and then, eh?)

I am SO appreciative of the sewing tips and tricks I've picked up from other blogs - thank you to everyone out there who has helped me on this journey!  Along with all of the fabulous tips I pick up online, occasionally I hit on an idea or realization that's new to me, and I write about it, and someone else tells me that they learned something because of my writing about it, and I LOVE it when that happens!   Sometimes it's just a matter of being in the right place at the right time.   Just the other day I got an email from someone thanking me for my explanation of the welt pocket process (on a post a wrote a couple of YEARS ago) - something that's been written about a squillion times, but I wrote in a way that *I* understood it, and 3 or 4 other people apparently thought like I did and learned something new.   Cool.  :)   3 or 4 is good.

But is that really enough for a blogging "voice"?   I'm sure we've all been to that place before, where 37 people have explained something to us, and then 1 person says it in just the right way, at just the right time, and you "get it"!   In the technical aspect of the sewing world, I think that happens all the time.  I still read blogs that are directed to beginning sewists, and I read a little tidbit and have another "aha!" moment.  With all of the tutorials out there, I'm sure we all have something to learn, and many of us have something to share.

But that's not really a "voice", is it?

Which brings me back to the title of this post: "Musings on the Creative Process".  I think that's what sewing is becoming for me - it's really about the creative process as much as, if not more than, the finished result.   It's both the public and the internal voice for unravelling my creative process.   The process of finding out who I am, and how I express that - sewing really is (or can be) a way of expressing my internal beliefs of who I "am" in my physical, external presence.

Pardon me while I think out loud.  I'm coming to the realization that sewing my individualistic wardrobe is a way of melding my internal self with my external expression, and it is, quite frankly, a "coming out" in a way.  Which requires an understanding of who I am....who I am becoming....who I want to become.....

I didn't know, at the beginning, if this was going to all about sewing, but I did say in my profile (which hasn't changed since I first wrote it) that it was about the process:

"Having a dream of what I want to create is wonder-filled....having a finished product that makes me (and you) smile is delightful.....being aware of what's happening during the process is priceless."

and from my blogger title:

"It's about exploring and sharing my creative adventures (mostly sewing these days) ~
~those activities that sometimes obsess, usually inspire, occasionally frustrate
~and always provide a delightful maze to wander through."

Perhaps I'm going back to the roots of my blogging experience - please bear with me as I explore this territory about the expression of the internal  through the external.  And I would love to hear from you as I do my own exploration.....

I know there are a lot of reasons why we sew - I'm curious about those of us who are really interested in bringing the unique and creative into our clothes.  I really hope to open a dialogue with those of you who care to share.....
  • do you sew, and dress, to express the inner you?  
  • Has sewing helped you discover/uncover who you really are?   
  • Does it take courage to dress the way you really feel about yourself?
  • DO you dress the way you really feel about yourself?
  • Do you sew to express your own individuality, and what is it that you are expressing?  Rebelliousness?   Power?  Artistry?  Thumbing your nose at something?   Something else?
  • Maybe you sew just to be able to be "on trend" and do it affordably, or just want clothes that friggin' FIT you, because nothing in retail does - I'm interested in those reasons too.  
  • Or maybe you just don't want to be part of the "fast fashion" crowd - kudos to you for that!
Why do you sew?   And what is the creative process behind it?

I actually plan to really explore this, both for my own self exploration and the curiosity that makes other people explore (obsess about?) their own creative process....

Your turn....I really want to hear from you!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Nineteen Easy Pieces

Yes - 19 pieces, in a pattern rated Easy.   Okay, truth is, you don't actually use all 19 pieces in any one view, but staring at the pattern pieces and trying to make sense of how they all went together in Katharine Tilton's new dress (Butterick 5881) was most definitely a brain puzzler!  Especially when you're trying to figure out how to color block it, and wondering which piece fits where....

I started with the easiest possible step, and just made a muslin of the underdress to check for fit.  Thanks to Martha, Seams Well, and Coco, who bravely went before me, I knew that I wanted to lengthen it (by about 2" in my case - on my 5'4" frame?  Yes, this is a short dress!) and go with a smaller size than one might think based on measurements - I cut an 8.

Other changes made:

  • I eliminated the front opening and it still slips easily over my head.   
  • I also raised the lower armhole by about 1/2" (even after doing my usual sloping shoulder adjustment, which gives a net result of raising the armhole by almost 1")  I did not, however, make a narrow shoulder adjustment - the cut is already fairly narrow.   
  • I also raised the front neckline by about 1.5".   
  • After sewing it all together, I discovered that I also needed to take in the side seams, at the armscye, by about 1/2" (for a total of 1" on each side) - I tapered this to nothing about 4" down the side seam.  The reviews of the others who made this dress indicate similar issues with the fit around the armscye & bust area.  Everything else is a very loose fit, so I cut the rest of it as is, and was happy with the fit.

The next step was figuring out which fabric was going to go where, and what pieces to cut out.   I settled down for a session of pattern instruction reading to try to get it to all make sense in my brain.   But before getting too bogged down, I hit on  a rather brilliant and simple solution (if I do say so myself)!  I simply took a picture of all of the pattern pieces on the instruction sheet, enlarged it a bit, cut them all out, labeled them and figured out what went where with my little paper doll pieces.  :)   That may sound like a lot of work, but it really only took about 10 minutes, and it made everything fall into place so easily!  And probably saved at least an hour (or two) of angst and potential mistakes down the line!
Ahhh, the memories of the paper doll days -
did anyone besides me play with paper dolls when you were kids?
Or maybe you still do? ;-D

Not only was it easy to see which pieces were used in which view, and where they fit, but I was able to note my adjustments on each piece, avoiding any cutting errors (thanks for that heads up, Martha!)  Tracing the pattern pieces and knowing which fabrics to cut was a piece of cake after that - yay!  And only 11 pieces to cut for view B.  Although I did draft a couple of pockets as well.

I also eliminated the elastic gathering at the back.   Actually, I did install the elastic, even though I questioned whether I was going to like it - sure enough, I did NOT like the extra pouf it gave to my backside, so I removed it.  All 4 pieces of elastic.  Installed using the zig-zaggy lightning stitch.   *sigh*  Luckily, it was another of the gorgeous days we've been having, and I was able to do my unpicking while sitting on the front porch in perfect outside light, watching the peaches grow :).   I was also lucky in that the unpicked stitches didn't show on the fabric at all!

I shopped my stash for this one, and found two pieces of linen, and some batik cotton - I never would have shopped specifically for a combo like this - the magic that can happen when you're searching for a match in stash is such a happy thing at times!  :)

Laying out the chosen pieces:
(I did see something I wanted to change when I did this -
I  dumped the small brown square in the back, 
replacing it with a piece of the batik)

In this view, the entire underdress (the silvery/grey linen) is one long piece, extending from neckline to the lower hem.   The other two views have a shorter underdress, with extra layers of skirt attached.  The grey pieces in the bodice are actually part of the overdress - the bodice and the upper skirt are two layers of fabric.

Sewing everything together went very smoothly - the pieces are perfectly drafted, and fit together beautifully.   The instructions are very clear - good job done on this one by Katherine and Butterick!

Surely y'all know by now that I loves me my pockets, and this dress, in its casualness, just screamed out for pockets to me.   The pattern has these quirky little gaps in the seams between the bodice and the skirt, so I added one small pocket inside one of the gaps:

I did this by stitching up a simple patch pocket, attaching the top of the pocket to the overskirt, then lining it up and patching the 3 lower edges to the underdress.

I also added a pocket at the side seam, using a similar process.   I left an opening in the side seam of the overskirt, and attached the pocket opening to the front piece of the overskirt, and patched the rest of the pocket on to the underdress.   A bit unconventional, but I do have functioning pockets!

You can see the opening of the pocket in this shot.
You also get a sense of the line of the back without the elastic gathering.
It still has a bit of "flounce", but not as extreme as it was with the elastic gathers.

Another change I made was to eliminate the center front opening and buttonholes - the dress slips on easily without buttons, and I'm all for simplifying, especially when it comes to eliminating the full-on plackets and buttonholes!   Unfortunately, I didn't think this through when I was cutting the overdress pieces of the bodice - they meet in the center without overlapping, and then you add the center band for the buttons and buttonholes.   This meant that I ended up with no seam allowances at the center front!
My solution was to butt the edges together, lay fusible interfacing over them, and then zig zag over the butted seam.

Finished, with buttonhole-less buttons :)
Oh, one other change - the pattern calls for a neck facing;
I made a binding instead.

Styled two ways (and worn both ways the same day I finished it!
(I should probably also mention that, given the linen fabric, I do look 
a bit rumpled after being out and about for a few hours.)

The funky, edgy look:

And the more casual look:

Oh yes - the border print bits on the bottom are Marcy Tilton silk screens.  I'm thinking of adding just a couple more, so the dress isn't completely finished yet.

Bottom Line?  I like this pattern WAY more than I thought I would!  I can see it in a much lighter-weight fabric, maybe even a sheer overlay, and I can also see it with sleeves as more of a winter-weight dress.  It's definitely a winner in the comfy-casual category, especially given the wide array of creative options inherent in the design.   Thumbs way up!

And yes....I think it's spite of the better part of a lifetime declaring myself a non-dress person....I do believe I'm turning into a lover of dresses!   The times, they are a-changing....

Friday, May 17, 2013

Another Successful Me-Made Week :)

Loving the Me-Made-for-a-Month concept.   Seriously, Loving it!  I'm definitely choosing my outfits with more consideration, and dressing "up" a bit more, even when I'm planning on spending most of my day at home.  I'm ready to pop out to the grocery store at a moment's notice (hey, I might even find an excuse to go out and about!)  And I'm sure we all know that when we feel better about how we look, we project that, and strangers smile a bit more, and a few more feel-good vibes end up getting spread around.   If we help spread a few more smiles around, just by dressing a little bit more consciously, then who's to argue with that?

Here's this week's roundup:
Day 11 -
Au Bonheur Asymmetric T,
rtw pants

Day 12 - Mother's Day.
I spent a good portion of the day tending the garden in memory of Mom -
along with teaching me to sew, I spent many cherished hours with her in our vegie garden as a child.   She instilled in me the love of fresh vegies, along with the pleasure of getting my hands dirty.  :)   "It's CLEAN dirt", she used to say.   

Day 13 - A jeans work day.
Wearing the first tshirt I ever made (pre-blog, and I'm too lazy to look up the pattern)
and the first jeans I ever made (Jalie Jeans)

Day 14 - Another version of Shams' tablecloth skirt,

Days 15 and 16 were 2 more jeans work days.
These took an immediate claim to Favorite Jeans right after making them, 
and I take a rather perverse pleasure in the fact that they are now really showing their wear - the knees are thinning, they have a few stains, and they really shouldn't even be worn as work jeans anymore!  (I do see clients while wearing them!)

And finishing off the week, it's Theme Friday!
"Hats" is the theme for the day, and not only did the weather cooperate,
but so did my hair (bad hair day).  Perfect!
Wearing Decades of Style Collar Perfection blouse - pre-blog, and
rtw pants.

I'm still identifying wardrobe holes, and already looking forward to next year's MMM, when I might be able to set a realistic goal of wearing ALL me-made clothes for a month!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

I Don't Much Like Bright Shiny Obj - Oh Look!! Some Glitter!!!

Really.  You won't often find me wearing much of anything bright and shiny, other than a bit of jewelry, perhaps a touch of metallic thread - I'm just a bit more of the earth than I am of the stars.   Except for those times when my mind is wandering through the galaxies, but that's another matter....

But still.  How easy it can be to get distracted by the glittery baubles that jump into our path, squealing "Look at me!  Pet Me!  Touch me!   Sew with me!"  Right?   Not that I ever actually bought and sewed with any of it, that is....until.... A friend asked me to make her a flashy, over-the-top, steampunk bustle.   And then another one.   And my little Etsy shop was born.  And even though I will likely never wear this sort of flash, sometimes it's just flat out FUN sewing with the metallic, the shiny, the polyester and velvet and tulle and sparkles.   And although I've never before been much of a fan of raw edges in garments, with the bustles and costumes I'm really feeling a penchant for slicing and dicing and shredding and letting the raw edges flit and fray and live their own life...

One bonus of sewing with fabrics like this is that people often end up with them in their stash and have nothing to make with them - sometimes it's a "What was I thinking?!" matter, sometimes it's just leftovers from a costume or some other project - whatever the reason, my darling friends find a bit of glitter in their stash, think of me, and say "Aha!  It's bustle material!  Dump it on give it to Jilly Be!  And I happily fondle it, knowing I have material for another over-the-top concoction that I get to dream up :)

Here's my latest creation, custom made for a client who is making articulated fairy wings (!) to go with it.
Back view, inside and outside - This one is reversible!:

Side View:

Once I (thought I) was done with the new client's bustle, she asked me to embellish a bra that was to be part of her costume.   Oh goodie!  More flash and glitter!   I thought this would be a simple fix.  Hah!   (Note to Self:  Do NOT, repeat NOT, agree to work on someone else's sewn item before you've had a chance to actually inspect it.)   After replacing the nasty, scratchy, el cheapo ties on the original bra, and then repairing the poorly sewn beads, (all of which took WAY longer than my embellishing!) I was finally able to get to the fun stuff.   Here's the result:  (Note:  my dress form is about 2....or 3....sizes larger than the client)

The client is going to add the wings, which she is making herself.   She has promised me pictures, and I hope I'll have permission to show y'all the completed costume!

How fun can sewing be, eh?   Now it's back to more practical stuff   (i.e., sewing for moi...)   Oh, and a gift for a special someone - another creative and too-much-fun goody, I hope!

Can you tell that sometimes I just love to sew?  ;-D

Oh, and by the way, in case you're wondering about that friend who got me started on the bustle-making, she wears hers to steampunk events, where she sells her art - the most amazingly awesome snowglobes you have ever seen!   I DO hope you get a chance to see them in person, but in the meantime, here's second best, a link to her website, Camryn Forrest Designs

Friday, May 10, 2013

The Wearing of the Me Mades (Week 2)

Every now and then you have one of those days, right?  Well, It's been a week.  Yes, it has.  Not only did I not sew; I didn't accomplish much of anything else either!   The good news:  I still managed to wear me-made every day, AND took pictures!  Well, I missed one day, but that day doesn't count, because I wore the same thing two days in a row.   My jammies.   Told you it was a week.  The further good news:  I broke through it all today, and had a marvelous day at work.   The sun is shining on me again :)

Day 4:  With 2 of my wonderful women, catching up on life :)
Wearing rtw top, and my "Basklecloth Skirt"
blogged here.

Day 5:  Hanging around home - thought I'd get out and about,
so I dressed for it.   Never happened. 
Burda Style Tneck top, from November '11
blogged here

Day 6: Looks a lot like Day 5.  Almost is
With Cat
Katherine Tilton Zip T, blogged here,
and Marcy T pants V8712 - I didn't blog this particular pair,
because I've already made them enough times I have no more to say!
Day 7:  Managed to get out and about,
because I had an appointment and had to.
Marcy T (yes, MORE Marcy!) Jacket V8795
and Marcy T pants (yes, AGAIN!)

Days 8 and 9:
This was my view of the world for those 2 days.

Day 10 - Feeling 100% again!!!   Yay!!!
Good thing, because I had a client to see
This is Theme Friday - todays theme was Sewing/Creating Space
Rather than follow trend and pose in my actual sewing room, I recruited my 
two mannequins to model a couple of bustles with me.
I'm a bit rumpled after a day of trucking around the woods (yes, dressed like that - my work does take me into some interesting environments sometimes.....)
Wearing LaFred Thalia Pants

What I've learned this week (besides a whole lot of life lessons), thanks to the Me-Made experience:

I can easily wear the same ole' thing 2, even 3 days in a row, if I have no real reason to dress differently.  Sewing for myself had definitely upped my wardrobe and appearance consciousness, and Me-Made-May is taking it to another level.   This is a good thing.  :)

I'm already identifying holes in the wardrobe.  Need a bit more color in tops, since I prefer to wear softer colors (not black) when seeing clients.  It's an energy thing.

Thank goodness we are having some major Weather Variety!  I would be doing a whole lot of repetition if this were happening mid-winter or mid-summer!

I've already done several bags full of closet and drawer purging.  Most is being re-homed, some is slated for ripping and upcycling.   Closets and drawers both have a lot more breathing room :).

I'm still surprised that I'm managing to take a picture every day, and other than the 2 jammie days, I've repeated some items, but no complete outfits.  Yet.   Still LOVING the whole concept!!!

Thanks to Zoe, and to ALL of the MMM participants who are making this process such an inclusive and fun challenge!  I'm loving seeing all of the daily outfits on the flickr page!

And I'm hoping to get caught up on a bunch of sewing this weekend :)

Friday, May 3, 2013

Me-Made-May - It's Friday!

Why did I wait so long to participate in a Me-Made-May???  Nearly 500 participants this time around!  Had I known how fun and inspirational it can be, I would have jumped in before now.   I thought that it required wearing  something you made every day of the month, AND taking a daily picture (not enough me-made clothes and taking a daily pic sounded like WAY too much work...)   Wrong on both counts!

Although I have vowed to be wearing at least one me-made item all the time during the month, I still don't think I'll be able to take a daily picture, and that's fine by get to make up your own "rules" - my kind of group!

 My plan is to post what pics I have on Fridays; here are this week's shots.  People are getting creative with the concept of a Friday Theme - this week it's Water.

Day 1 (It was only Wednesday, but I jumped right in with the water theme):

Day 2:
aka The Lil Ole Lady Dress Gone Wild

Day 3 (Water Theme Friday)
Looking for some bigger water.....
(the tops are RTW)

The heck with it - I'll just stand in the fountain.

So far, I've separated out the me-mades from the rtw in my closet, and that's giving me a much better idea about what needs to be re-homed, recycled, or ripped and re-made.    So many of my older, rtw clothes are really NOT in good shape, other than the nicer items, which don't fit well (amazing what you discover about fit when you start sewing, isn't it?)  I wish fabric shopping weren't so darn fun, because I seriously have more than enough in my closet and stash to last me.....[ahem] a rather long time....

I'm also actually WEARING clothes that have been a bit neglected (translation:  skirts and dresses).  That's partly the weather - high 80's 3 days in a row!   As much as I love the tropics, that's just too danged hot for here; I'm wilting....  Standing in the fountain was yummy on the feet :)

Oh yeah, and taking silly pictures that aren't just showcasing a particular pattern or garment is another perk, and it actually makes the whole picture-taking thing more enjoyable :)

Another nice aspect of all this is that I'm discovering new-to-me sewists and blogs, new patterns, and even new pattern companies!  Like this Japanese company - I'm really tempted to download a couple of their patterns:  Tamanegi-Kobo  (click on the "Patterns in English" link, and translate).  I really like the Sophia jacket, and check out the sleeves on the Fujiko top (set-in on the front, raglan in the back - unusual!)

Sophia Jacket - Love the collar, lose the belt though.

Looking forward to playing with my wardrobe and seeing just how far I can stretch what I have this month, meeting new people, filling myself with new inspiration....and doing some major wardrobe reassessment :)

And you?  Have you or are you participating in MMM this year?  Or have you in the past? What is or was your motivation, and what did you take away from the experience?

Off to do some errands before the afternoon heat starts to wilt me even more....

Happy Sewing, Everyone!  :)