Sunday, May 31, 2015

Me Made May 2015 - Day 31 & Finale

Well, here we are! Made it! It was a lot of fun and I so enjoyed playing along the sidelines as I didn't "officially" join by making the MMM pledge. I want to thank Zoe of 'So,Zo...What do you know?' for organizing this fun event. 

For the finale, Blouse Marthe transformed into a dress. I first made it as a top here, but ultimately decided to make it longer into a dress.
I am not entirely convinced this will be the last version of this dress. I am not getting as much wear out of it as I'd expected so will see if there's another transformation coming, or maybe, simply, I just need to remove some of the fullness. Time will tell. 

So, what did I learn from Me-Made-May? 

I like blue a lot more than I'd realized.

Before this month I tended to make tops, tops and more tops. So this month I focused on bottoms and dresses. Here are some of them:
Cropped pants using Alison Glass Handicrafted batiks

I made tops too but only because I had discovered the Maya pattern at the start of the month, so 3 Mayas.
I had an epiphany of sorts too and it's response to things like "wow, you are making a lot of clothes. Don't you have enough already?" Ahhh, that question. When I was working, I liked to have a 'healthy wardrobe'. OK, I like clothes and of course I've had that question before. Now that I am not working, the question is even harder to answer. I felt guilty. Clothing has a connotation of vanity attached.

So why do I keep making clothes? Why do YOU make 5 versions of your favourite pattern?

The answer came to me this way. I took up acrylic painting maybe a year or so ago. I  kept creating new paintings. No one asked me "don't you have enough paintings?" It's expected as part of the creative process you keep painting. 

Well, to me, ever since I took up sewing again last summer THIS has become my canvas, my outlet for my creativity.  I can't stop creating so I don't.  As I get more comfortable with learning about sewing, I am creating my own versions of patterns to suit myself. I so enjoy that.  Sewing allows me to use both sides of my brain, the logical side to learn new skills, and the creative side by creating a garment that suits me and expresses who I am. Yes, I want to learn to dye, block print and all sorts of stuff I don't even know the names to. I am just having so much fun there's no reason to stop. 

I can't wear my paintings (yet) but I can with my newly sewn clothes. 

It's been great to see what other people are making. I want to learn to knit this fall. I want to make a cardi! I want to knit socks! So I have a year to at least one of those things done, right? ;-)

I am also pleased to have a few new readers who have left comments on my blog! That was another lovely outcome from this month -  connecting to other sewists.

What have you taken away from Me-Made-May this year? 

Saturday, May 30, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 30

I made a pair of culottes! These started off as Girl Friday Culottes from Liesl & co. I did make a wearable muslin out of some, it turned out, awful quilting cotton. I knew then I needed some softer fabric so I cut out a pair out of this Robert Kaufman chambray. 

While the Girl Friday culottes are very elegant, I recently saw something different online and decided I would try and make some changes:
- abandoned the inseam pockets and waistband
- folded over the waist on the skirt and inserted 1 inch elastic. Added big patch pockets on the sides of the culottes.


These worked out better than I'd hoped. I do want to do a big bigger pockets, maybe with gathers. I also want to do this with a linen, which I have never sewn with before.

The top I am wearing is one I made at the beginning of May - the lovely Maya pattern from Marilla Walker.

Last day for Me-Made-May 2015 tomorrow! Woo-hooooo!

Friday, May 29, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 29

I finally made the Washi from Made by Rae.  When I started sewing last summer, the Washi was one of those well loved patterns out there but it was only up till now that I've cracked open the pattern. I decided just to make a simple sleevless top out of it.


I am undecided whether I like it on me. I think my indecision is probably based on the fact that I am used to wearing loose fitting things and this is a snug fit, so something different!  The other thing though is it feels a bit like a maternity top. Someone else said that she lowered the neckline, and also added 2 inches to the bodice and felt then that it looked a lot better on her. I might try that next time. 

I had withheld the little cap sleeve things (I've learned now I don't like that on me, just like with the Alice Top), did simple gathers instead of pleats in the front and an elastic instead of shirring at the back.  

The fabric is Nani Iro, another older print that I had hunted down. 

Two more days to go! Happy Friday!

Thursday, May 28, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 28

Today's outfit is dubbed "The Farm Girl look|" courtesy of my husband. 

The fabric is a simple plaid, Japanese cotton from Miss Matatabi.   While I wanted to try something a bit different (not Nani Iro?) I still wanted to stick with cotton.  Then I waited for inspiration to hit as to what to make with it. A shirt was an obvious choice but I didn't want a "standard" shirt style. Then I remembered I had the Factory Dress Pattern from Merchant & Mills.  So I added about 6" to the bodice and made a top out of it.

I quite like it! The cotton is light and a bit crinkly which I like. Made as a top I will definitely be wearing this through the summer. 

The pattern was easy enough to stitch up. I am not crazy about the back facing though as it's a bit flappy as you can see by the first photo.  I do like how the front neckline dips. It adds a bit of elegance to a boxy design.

I do feel a bit like a tomboy with this outfit! ;-)  Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 27

A much quieter palette today. A hacked Scout tee into a cardi, paired with Oceanside Pants.

All the outfit needs is a giant pink peony broach, don't you think?

The Scout cardi has not gotten much wear so it's a prime candidate for a "refashion". We shall see.

Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 26

How is this for a summery top? All I need is a hot summer's day at the beach! This is the Shearwater Kaftan by Make it Perfect. I think this was my second version, made last year, with a higher slit in the front. Fabric is an older Nani Iro.
Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, May 25, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 25

I actually finished this right after the Scout tee dress. I like to line up things to sew with similar colours so I don't need to change threads so often. 

This is Dress No. 1 (bottom) and Wiksten Tank (top) melded together to make a happy fit for me.  The fabric is from the Nani Iro Spring 2015 collection. It's called En Garden. You can see the whole collection here.

I tried my hand at making gathered pockets, which I am quite pleased about. I used the selvedge on one pocket  upside down so when I sit down I can look at it and read it.
This dress says perfectly captures May in my garden, full of wonderful late spring blooms and my first flush of roses.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 24

This is Dress E from the Stylish Dress Book, Wear with Freedom.  I've made Dress E before but this time with a couple of changes. See if you can spot them before I tell you.

The changes I made was to (1) increase the sleeve length as much as I could with the fabric I had and then I wore them rolled up, (2) lowered the neckline a couple of inches at center front, then just rounding it out a bit - I really like how it turned out, kinda like a rounded V if that makes sense! and (3) though you can't see it the back is now one piece instead of two and I trimmed down the width.

The fabric is an Indian cotton from Merchant & Mills. I actually bought a couple of pieces of this cotton from an online Canadian store last year which, sadly, has closed down.  The cotton is a wonderful weight for summer.

I finished this last night and wasn't sure how I felt about it. This morning I put it on and it just felt perfect!   I seem to be eying denim and indigo shades at the moment - must be the influence of summer coming!

Saturday, May 23, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 23

This started off as a cool and cloudy Saturday morning, so a longer sleeve Scout tee was called for. This one got a long of wear in the winter months.
The fabric is Nani Iro Pierre Pocho (can't remember the specific name though).  I love this fabric!

Friday, May 22, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 22

I feel like the long distance runner - Mile 22, only 8 more to go! Here is the Camber Set Tee by Merchant & Mills.  I first had it plain and felt something was missing. After wearing it a few times, I  decided to crop it and added the border print pockets and it was much better.
I will have something new to show tomorrow!  Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, May 21, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 21

Since I was talking about colour yesterday, here's the first Sailor Top I made. The Nani Iro Little Letters fabric's gold flowers glow in soft light while the bright daylight really flattens the tones. Still beautiful but different.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 20

Hot off the sewing machine - a summer dress! Oh, I'm so in love with this one!  It's a mix of components I love:

1. Scout tee by Grainline Studio
2. Dress No 1 by 100 Acts of Sewing
3. Alison Glass Handcrafted cotton - Plus Teal


I love it! This is something I drafted using the first two patterns. I really like the drape of the Dress No 1 on me and have decided to adopt that. There will be more versions to come!

One of the things I learned from Me-Made-May this year is COLOUR. Basically how colour shifts with the light of the seasons. A lot of things I made in the cool light of fall & winter now fail miserably in this bright sunshine! I am sure the reverse will happen when I attempt to wear brights in the darker days later - "garish" might be a word that will pop up. So, that was interesting to me. I also find that the brighter colours look better on me as well even though I love paler shades and fall-ish tones!

Any epiphanies from MMM2015 for you?

Monday, May 18, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 18

Happy Victoria Day! Here in Canada it's the last day of the long weekend.  Today it's sunny and warm, a happy nautical blue stripes tone is required!  It's the Shearwater Kaftan and you can read about its origin here where I nicknamed it the "Lemonade Top".
I feel like I should be on a sailboat somewhere!

Sunday, May 17, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 17

I finally got around to making this top. It's a great combination of Simplicity 1366 and Nani Iro Water Window wata gauze. Mine is not the first to use this combination. I shamelessly copied this from other sewists!  The top is paired with Oceanside pants which I have shown before.
This fabric just makes me grin from ear to ear. Doesn't it go well with the song "Happy"?  Go ahead. Play it. Make your whole body dance on this lovely Sunday!

Saturday, May 16, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 16

Another Sailor Top today, with a pair of cropped pants from Vogue 8985. It's the same pair as I made here.  I found these pants are just the best for working out in the garden - comfy, cool and fits well for all that gardening 'workout'.
The fabric of the top comes from an older Nani Iro print. The pants are made from Alison Glass Handcrafted line.

Half-way through Me-Made-May!  I'm really enjoying seeing everyone's creations. I can definitely see the holes in my wardrobe. I've been making some bottoms (summer pants, skirts) but I think I need a dress or two! 

Friday, May 15, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 15

Off to yoga class today. Can't believe I haven't shown a Sailor Top yet, from Fancy Tiger Crafts. I have made a few of these.  The fabric is Nani Iro Herringbone Pencil.
I'm debating whether to put on pockets with the white border as an accent. (If you know this fabric you'll understand what I mean). Happy Friday!

Thursday, May 14, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 14

First item of clothing I made with Liberty tana lawn. The fabric is Kaylie Sunshine. The pattern is Scout tee.  A lovely combination!
I'm off to plan more sewing projects!

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 13

I've been cleaning the house this morning. It definitely needed it.  What I set out to do is all done! Yay! Now a shower and change into something clean and comfy.

You can read about the blouse here. The pants are Oceanside Pants by Melly Sews. This is my second pair (un-blogged) and it is in Essex linen in a very pretty, versatile colour. The only concern I have about the fabric is that it feels scratchy to me. I have worn 100% linen before and I'm fine. This is a blend of 50/50 linen and cotton I think and it feels very "nubbly" (is that a word?) against my skin. Hopefully the fabric will soften with washing.

Actually I think I need a nap before that shower!  

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 12

So, finished yesterday sometime...my first two piece finish. It all started with a free skirt pattern - the Easy Gathered Skirt by Pattern Runway.  I thought it would be great to have a couple of easy, breezy skirts to wear. I used Nani Iro's Woodblock Pocho.
I think I had about 3 yards of this so I had a piece left over for a small top. Well, I had to go with the Maya top again because it makes such good use of fabric. I had to crop it though by 2.5 inches I think. I used another fabric for the facing. It was a lovely surprise to get a two piece out of this fabric. 
The only thing I am a bit unhappy about is the shade of the fabric (I do love the print!). It's got a lot of yellow-y green in that grey, even if it doesn't show up in the photos. Not a good colour for me. So I will have to wrap myself with some colour to fix it up!  Maya with rolled up sleeves looks pretty cute! 
I really like the skirt pattern, by the way. It has a flat waistband front with gathers, while the back has the elastic waistband. I opted for patch pockets just to play with the prints more.

Enjoy your Tuesday!

Monday, May 11, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 11

I finished a two piece outfit yesterday...well, just about! Tweaking the last finishing bits so hope to post tomorrow. In the meantime, I'm wearing my beloved Wiksten Tova. The fabric is Nani Iro Little Letters (not double gauze though). I love this fabric. It's a nice comfy light cotton.
Happy Monday!

Sunday, May 10, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 10

Happy Mother's Day!  I figured today deserved a dress. This is Darling Ranges I made last year but hadn't worn yet.  It was December, too cold for this then.
I think I need to sew a few more dresses for summer!

Saturday, May 9, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 9

Zing! The temperatures have really heat up and it will be a nice, warm weekend. Time for some bright colours! This is the beloved Scout Tee from Grainline Studio, made last year in Nani Iro Freedom Garden.  I do love how the double gauze gets crinkly with wear around the seams. Love this!  Wish I had more of this fabric for a skirt!
I've been really enjoying seeing the Me-Made-May garments out there! Last year at this time I had no idea what the sewing world was! It slowly started with my mom asking me to hem some pants for her. Since I was rusty with sewing skills, I thought I would go online and look up the process of shortening these pants for her.

Well, you know what happens when you go online to look for information - a  Jack-in-the-Box jumps out, arms loaded with eye candy.  Indy designers were a big draw for me. Scout tee and the Wiksten Tova were two of the first designs that I gravitated to and fortunately they worked out really well.

Hope you are enjoying Me-Made-May out there too!

Friday, May 8, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 8

My love affair with the Maya sewing pattern continues. This time I decided to try it with sleeves, as described by Marilla's blog post here.  Basically I made the sleeves as long as my fabric width would allow.
The front of the top is made with Nani Iro's Jewel Song in a gorgeous pale pink.  I had purchased 1 meter of this thinking I would make a scarf, but when the Maya came along, I found a charming Nani Iro Fuwari Fuwari remnant that I could use for the back. So, this top was born. Lucky me!

The photos do not do justice to the colours. Naomi Ito has a magic way with creating the fabrics for Nani Iro. The colours from one year's designs seem to coordinate nicely with another year's. Not always but often.

I love this version of Maya too! Two pattern pieces plus the pocket. Easy Peasy!

Thursday, May 7, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 7

I'm really rushed today so I am using a previously taken photo. I finished this top a month ago and I am wearing exactly that today - Top 2a from Simple Modern Sewing.

Off I go! 

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 6

Today's top started its life as Blouse K from the Stylish Dress Book, Wear with Freedom. I posted a pic back in November.  I was frustrated back then with the whole fit. I had only been sewing a few months so inexperience contributed to my frustration. I actually de-constructed the whole thing with the idea that I could use the fabric for another pattern. ha ha.

As it was a short top, I couldn't really cut another pattern from it. So, I decided to put it back together with some tweaks. Primarily I put in a big tuck in the back, sewed up the front and put in these tucks/pleats whatever making sure I narrowed the neckline to the size I want. Voila, it lives again in a slightly different guise.  The fabric is an Indian cotton from Merchant & Mills.

It will do.  Happy Me Made Day 6!

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 5

It's a bit cooler today so it's leggings and a tunic. From Stylish Dress Book, Wear with Freedom, this is the popular Dress E.
I made this last August and love it. I hunted down that Nani Iro fabric too as it was from a few years ago. Can't remember the name though..Fuccra something.  I am wearing the grey slip that I made a couple of days ago and it's working nicely though I need to shorten it a bit for this tunic.

Monday, May 4, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 4

For Day 4, my first ever Scout tee, made last year in Nani Iro Pierre Pocho Rainbow Stones.
An absolute favourite!

Sunday, May 3, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 3

Last year I stitched Dress No. 1 from 100 Acts of Sewing. You can see the post here. I also made one for a friend so I know the pattern is simple, easy and it works.  I have been thinking that, with modifications, it would make a great cotton slip, and also a nightdress for those warmer nights.

So, I took the Dress No. 1 pattern and melded it with the Wiksten tank on top, to skinny the shoulders. Now I know the Wiksten tank has a dress version but I wanted the the wider dress portion of Dress No.1

The first one is what I call my nightdress. It was a cotton voile I purchased last year online, on sale. It was one of those situations where I loved the fabric (feels great), the colours (blues, oranges) but the print - pretty but reminds me of upholstery so someone could accidentally sit on me if I wore this out! ;-) Kidding.

I do still love the fabric but I am glad to have made it into a nightdress. I wore it last night (which I count as today!). It's perfect for me.

This next one is my slip. I had intended to start with a white one using lawn but I had goofed up on my cutting so I decided to start with a grey one. You might wonder why grey but that's more because of coincidence. This is a lovely chambray shirting from Robert Kaufman which I had purchased online. I didn't know until I got it in front of me how sheer it is! The fabric is gorgeous but it was either going to serve as lining of some type or needed to be lined. So I thought it would make a good slip, especially for wearing under double gauze. 

I really love how this turned out. I still have fabric left and am tempted to make a dress so I can wear these together. I still have to test the sheerness of that though.

I see a few more versions of this "basic" to come!

As an aside, I have comments from new visitors to the blog. Thank you so much! It's nice to know people are reading the blog. It's a sunny Sunday afternoon so gardening will have to replace sewing today!  See you tomorrow!

Saturday, May 2, 2015

MMM 2015 - Day 2

This morning when I got up it was a bit chilly. It had been windy and rainy during the night. So I pulled out a long sleeve to start the day off.
The top is Top 64 by Merchant & Mills. I made this last year. The cotton is a Janet Clare line. The pants are cropped, easy pull on (Vogue 8985), something comfy to wear at home.  The fabric is a great cotton from Alison Glass' Handcrafted line.  I really like the cottons in this line for garments, very soft and comfy.

So, today, two handmades worn!

I've been sewing so should have something new to show tomorrow. It's been fun to see all the Me-Made-May garments so far!

Friday, May 1, 2015

Happy May, Happy Maya!

Happy First Day of May! How did we get here so fast? I know that Me-Made-May 2015 has started today. I didn't officially join up but I think I will play along on the sidelines. It will be really fun to see all the me-mades! I wonder if pattern and fabric sales have traditionally had a spike for the months of May and June as a result of this wonderful event.

So, for me, I will start with a recent new made, the Maya from the talented Marilla Walker.  I started off with the basic, simple top using remnants that I had. 


The front is Nani Iro Sen Ritsu Germany, the back is a  Robert Kaufman chambray. I had purchased some Nani Iro remnants last year and I am so pleased with this piece I wish I had more. Sometimes photos just cannot really show you how pretty a fabric is (and sometimes it works the other way).

I love the Maya! It is so cute and comfy. I cut out a size 6 according to the chart. I had to take in the sides a lot (an inch each side) as it was too wide but now it's just grand. I plan to try a longer sleeve version as well as the button up version too.  I also like the stitched down facing even if my first attempt at top-stitching was a bit wonky at places.  Thanks, Marilla, for a really nice design!

Another reason I am so happy today is that this morning my intrepid postman brought me this...
A package from Frances of Miss Matatabi.  She does such a lovely job of wrapping your purchases. It feels really special, like a gift.  Inside, here's what I bought. Two Nani Iro 2015 on the right (gorgeous blues!), and two Japanese cotton plaids on the left. I saw the latter recently and wanted to try new things (plaids) and thought I might use at least one for the Maya. We shall see.
This post has a lot of blues and greys so I thought I would pop in a bit of pink in here, a tree peony from my garden. 
I feel this is going to be a great sewing month, with a lot of inspiration of Me-Made-May 2015! I just hope I don't spend too much looking and not enough time sewing!  Have you joined MMM 2015, or just want to play along the sidelines like me?

Have a lovely weekend!