Tag Archive | MMM16

The final #MMMay16 post

I feel quite proud of myself this year. I met my pledge (apart from one RTW top in extremis), and I also met my personal aim which was to photodocument each day. I will freely admit that quite a lot of the photos were frankly rubbish, but they are there, and that was the point. I posted on Flickr and on Instagram, and I spent ludicrous amounts of time trawling through the MMMay16 hashtags, to see what everyone else was posting!

I’ll do the reflections on my MMM first, then the final outfits.

What I have learned from my participation in Me Made May 2016

The photo-journalling definitely enhanced my experience of this month, because it meant I was engaging with other sewers online and felt like part of the greater community of sewers. It encouraged me to post my photos, because I felt like it’s only fair, if I’m adding my likes and comments on the profiles of others, to put my pics up for the same treatment. That leads in turn to acquiring a whole load more blogs to peruse, and instagram profiles to follow now that MMM is over.

This month has been a particular inspiration for me to get my sewing act together, with three UFOs finally F’ed, and a top embellished. I am all fired up to create some new skirts and tops, in my sewing class and at home.

I did feel like my me-made wardrobe was somewhat jaded, and I was reliant on a lot of old stuff that has been seen before. Even if other people didn’t know that it was so much old stuff, I did. Also, I already wear my me-mades a lot throughout the year anyway, so I felt quite meh about my outfits. I know MMM isn’t supposed to be all about brand new shiny, but I would have felt happier to have at least some new stuff. Last year was such a dud year for my sewing that there just wasn’t much to add to the mix this time round. But it is what it is, and I’m not going to beat myself up over it. Instead I will use this post as a reminder and inspiration for the next year, to get my sew-jo on, in the run up to MMM17.

I’ve got my colour palette well sussed. Things go with things, although in my ordinary clothes-wearing life I have a range of RTW items that create more links, more options than this month has shown. I’ve got no wardrobe orphans. I could probably use some more cardigans, though, especially in colours other than black!

It made me appreciate all over again some classic patterns that I could very happily reuse, because they are already graded and ready to go.

I’m also getting the feeling that the universe wants me to make a Colette Moneta dress. I saw so many lovely versions on other people and it’s a style which calls out to me, incorporating both prettiness and comfort. So that’s one of my aims for myself for the next year.

And that’s it, Me Made May 2016 is all done & dusted. It’s been fun, and exhausting (spending hours, literally hours, trawling through the IG feed, late at night!), and it’s really jump-started a whole new set of internet connections, some of which I hope will turn into real life connections, so as ever, I send out my massive thanks to Zoe, for another great MMM!


And finally, here are the outfits for the last 9 days of May, for those who have managed to stick through to the bitter end!

Days 23 to 31 - the blogging slacked off, evidently

Days 23 to 31 – the blogging slacked off, evidently

I’ll whiz through, because there was an awful lot of repetition going on.

Day 23 – the Cairo top with the aubergine skirt, both blogged here.

Day 24 – I was feeling ill, but managed to drag myself to teach dance, wearing a refashioned t-shirt also blogged here (it was a bit of a catch up post!), refashioned leggings and a me-made hip skirt thingy.

Day 25 – the aubergine skirt again, and the two become one top.

Day 26 – the rose tinted black denim skirt and the beaded Christmas top.

Day 27 – it was a Friday Theme day – Polka Dot Parade – I went for stealth polka dots, namely the bias binding hemming tape on the Counterintuitive Black Birds skirt. Paired with the crystal t-shirt top.

Day 28 – the Dress of Many Colours

Day 29 – the Cadfael & Cats Belcarra Blouse, along with a zebra print skirt that has been sitting, unloved, in the wardrobe. It’s in a very thin lycra jersey, much too thin to wear out much, but I do love a zebra print (black and white is always classy, right?). I made it maybe three or four years ago. But wearing it made me realise I love that zebra print too much to not wear it, so I’m going to have to make a proper version some time. Because I don’t have enough projects in my head already.

Day 30 – the brand new, just finished the night before, Under the Sea dress, which I need to photograph, so that I can blog it, but it’s going to need the weather to be a sight nicer than it’s been this week for that to happen.

Day 31 – and with a final flourish, the brand new, just finished the night before, Big Floral Circle Skirt, worn with the beaded Christmas top, because I’d run out of tops that might possibly go with it.


Six day’s worth of Me Made Mays

I’ve got a bit behind so there are 6 rather than 4 days today…

Days 17 to 22

Days 17 to 22

Day 17 – The Christmas refashioned top with the Red Square Skirt. That skirt either needs a serious makeover to make it more wearable, or it’s for the chop on 1st June. It’s just looking too frumpy.

Day 18 – The chartreuse Cadfael & Cats Belcarra Blouse, paired with the aubergine jersey skirt.

Day 19 – The Pretty Summer Splodges skirt, worn with the stripey refashioned top, because I can’t find the white top I intended to wear with it, and the stripes were the closest to grey I could manage.

Day 20 – The Blue Roses dress. I got a lot of “You look very summery” comments. I’m treating them all as compliments. Also it was Friday Theme Day, so the photo was mostly of my lovely local pub, the Stoke.

Day 21 – The Watermelon Belcarra Blouse, and the You Mean I’m Wearing Orange?! Skirt.

Day 22 – A complete outfit repeat from Day 7, the Hong Kong top with the Counterintuitive Black Birds skirt. I was pulling a silly face because my niece was taking the pic. We were having a delightful lunch to celebrate her 19th birthday.

The main thoughts that I’ve had this week are around outfit repeats, because there have been a few now, especially dresses, because a dress is an outfit all by itself.

  • Firstly, I will inevitably repeat outfits – when two things go together well, I don’t see any reason why I wouldn’t wear them together again on other occasions. If a dress looks nice on me, then I’ll wear it again. That’s the normal way I wear clothes. If they look good, I’ll carry on wearing them.
  • Secondly, another reason I would repeat outfits is that I have some self-mades that just don’t have multiple self-made matches – the Hong Kong top is a classic example of that. It needs a black skirt to match, but I only have one suitable black skirt. That doesn’t make it a “hole in my wardrobe” because actually I’ve got tons of black skirts to match it with, only they aren’t me-made.
  • Thirdly, I don’t particularly aspire to an entirely me-made wardrobe. I’m not going to sew yet another black skirt, however much I want to, because I do love me a black skirt, because I’ve got plenty of them (I say that, but the chances are I *will* sew myself another black skirt!). The challenge for MMM is to manage with just my me-mades, for this one month of the year- for the rest of the year I know I have more variation.

So unless I get on with some more of those UFOs in the pile there will inevitably be more repeats, of garments and quite possibly of outfits, over the next week.

And speaking of the UFO pile, I’ve put the metaphorical pile into more of a physical pile, i.e. I’m collecting them all together so I’ve got more of a handle on what still needs doing.  I did not realise how many I’d got!

Here’s the next four MMM outfits

Patterns in my clothing is making the text disappear!

Patterns in my clothing are making the text disappear!

Catching up…

Day 13 – Refashioned t-shirt from day 1, plus the Red Square skirt (which you can’t tell from the selfie). This was the best I could do for the Friday Theme of Stripes.

Day 14 – The All-nighter dress. I still love these colours with a passion. But I’m seriously thinking of cutting this down to a top, because the skirt part doesn’t seem to be hanging right.

Day 15 – The Dress of Many Colours (from day 11). It requires careful planning to repeat wearing this dress, because it is quite Noticeable. On Wednesday I was wearing it to work, and on Sunday I was wearing it at home, and to visit my sister, so there wasn’t going to be anyone there to say, “Oh, you’re wearing your bright/summery/colourful dress again…”.

Day 16 – The Squares & Triangles Circle Skirt, paired with a newly embellished t-shirt top.

This is yet another of my multiple Primarni t-shirt tarting up jobs. I had these crystals in my costume beading stash. They’re a slightly weird colour, a pale bronze-y gold. I don’t even remember acquiring them, as I’ve never had any costume plans in that sort of colour scheme, I’m guessing they were a mistaken Ebay purchase!

I marked the centre front, and started from that point, so that I could make sure the crystals would look right, and if there was going to be any problem with getting the final fit of the crystals, it would be at the back of my neck. I used one of the top-stitching lines for the neckband as my mark for keeping the beads in the right relationship with the neck edge. So I wasn’t just throwing it together, but doing a Proper Job.

Trying to be careful and not just eyeballing it

Trying to be careful and not just eyeballing it

And it was all ready to wear the next day…



It is seriously sparkly!

Here’s the next batch of MMM pics

Days 9 to 12

Days 9 to 12

Day 9 – This was the first day of fail. However, since I’d been in the office over the whole weekend, and had no chance to get any washing done, I just didn’t have a me-made top available. I’m not going to beat myself up over it. The top may be a boring old Primark t-shirt, but the skirt is me-made and it’s the one that I keep wearing, because it’s so gosh-darn easy to wear, but haven’t quite got around to blogging yet. However, I’m getting the information together below…. Also, washing did get done.

Day 10 – First day of the Ofsted Inspection. I’m wearing a top I refashioned a little while ago, but again, totally missed out on blogging, and the black denim skirt, which is a brilliant Old Faithful kind of a garment.

Day 11 – And we passed! Graded Good! Hooray and celebrations all round! I wore the Dress of Many Colours. And got comments on how summery and sunshiney it was, all day long!

Day 12 – No rest for the Wicked, all the work that I had to shove to one side because of the Inspection had to get finished in double quick time, because those deadlines hadn’t been eased, regardless of Ofsted. Wearing my You Mean I’m Wearing Orange?! skirt. Although, to be honest, since I made the Dress of Many Colours, I’ve worn orange much more than I ever thought I would when I included little hints of orange in the appliqués on this skirt. I also wore this new-ish top that is more properly introduced below.

So here’s some of that missing info…

The aubergine skirt

I made this just before going on holiday to Cairo, in February, except I never got around to hemming it, so I didn’t take it on holiday after all. It’s a very straightforward jersey pull-on skirt, self-drafted, based on an existing Marks & Spencer skirt. It really couldn’t have been easier – a basic skirt shape, slightly tapering, with extra length for a turned down elasticated waistband.

The fabric is a frankly rather cheap and nasty jersey, and it’s already pilling a bit, I’d only bought it as a try-out for jersey projects. But it’s a glorious colour, and super-comfortable, and I’ll keep wearing it for now.

This is the best image I've got of it so far, but it's bound to feature again this month...

This is the best image I’ve got of it so far, but it’s bound to feature again this month. Clicky for bigger.

There is a top in the course of completion, to match. However this might be rather too warm to wear in the summer, on account of it being nasty man-made fibres.

I’m half contemplating adding some sashiko style embroidery to both pieces, but only if I think it will work for both items, together and separately.

Stashwatch stats: The skirt failed to use up the whole piece of fabric, because I’d bought over 3 metres of it, as I recall! But it counts as one use towards the stash-score.


Black refashioned top

I refashioned an old stripy t-shirt, some time ago, because it had a polo neckline which I didn’t like, and I used the fabric from the polo neck to create a strip of binding, to edge the new neckline. Well I had tons of the binding left, so I used it to open up the neckline of another t-shirt, like so…

Refashioned t-shirt

Refashioned t-shirt

I finished it with a herringbone stitch, same as I’d done for the original stripy t-shirt.

And now a gratuitous close-up…



Stashwatch Stats: This refashion took place before the stashwatch came into being, so it sadly doesn’t count towards my planned refashions/upcycles.

The Pink Stretchy Floral Top

I got this fabric last year at Ditto in Brighton. It was in their remnants. It’s got a lovely soft feel and it’s such a fun print! In my opinion, you can never go wrong with a giant floral pattern.

I made this top to go to Egypt with, and you’ll be glad to hear I did wear it out there. I cobbled a pattern together, by copying another of my t-shirts and giving it a sort of cap sleeve. It’s not sophisticated, but I think it works, and it’s pretty. Having created something of a signature look with the herringbone stitch, I used it again, with a plain white jersey binding, on the neckline, the sleeves and the hem.

Floral top close-up

Floral top close-up

Cairo top

You can just about see the top underneath the costume pattern, from our Costume Sewing course in Cairo. I really must blog that soon, because it was fascinating.

Having gone to the trouble of doing the nice edging on the hem, I think it probably looks nicer tucked in, or at least, it does with a skirt. When I wear it with jeans or yoga pants, it’s long enough to be slightly tunic-y.

Stashwatch Stats: This used up the whole piece of fabric (which wasn’t big to start off with!)
Current tally – I’ve used 3/10 pieces of fabric, used *up* 1/5.

I think that catches everything up now.


Me-Made May continues

More office selfies

More office selfies

Day 5 – The chartreuse Cadfael & Cats Belcarra blouse was paired with the Squares and Triangles Circle skirt, for colour purposes.

Day 6 – This was Friday, which meant Friday Themes. I seem to have volunteered to organise the voting on the Flickr group for Friday themes – if you’re in the group do please go to the Discussions and vote for your favourites. I made a sort of unilateral decision to go for Yellow as the theme for the first one, because we hadn’t had time to sort out voting or anything much. Since I really don’t wear yellow, the nearest I could come up with was the Jif Lemon Dress, with its lemon appliqués.

Day 7 – The new Hong Kong top proved very successful, paired with the Counterintuitive Black Birds skirt. I really liked this silhouette. I must try to repeat this in some way. I’ve got plenty of straight skirts, I just need to find the right fabrics to make a load of shell tops. Damn this Stash diet!

Day 8 – The Blue Roses dress came out to play.

I’ve got no idea at all what I’m going to wear tomorrow!

The main realisation that has come to me in the last couple of days of MMM is from the hours of scrolling through other people’s photos on Flickr and Instagram. All the photos I’m liking seem to fall principally into the categories of Black and White, Bright Colours, Florals, and Geometrics. If I was unsure before, I think that proves definitively what my personal signature style is.

Is there anyone reading who’s doing MMM? Has it changed/confirmed your views on your wardrobe?

Me Made May progress

I’ve made it to day 4, although to be honest, days 1 & 2 were lounging about at home days so I wasn’t making any kind of sartorial (or indeed photographic) effort.

My progress can be followed on Instagram (@missbeacurtis) or on Flickr (where I’m beassewingadventures).


Me Made May 2016 – well begun is half done…

Day 1 – Refashioned t-shirt top plus a simple skirt that I will blog more fully when there’s a decent picture of it.

Day 2 – Another refashioned t-shirt plus the same skirt.

Day 3 – The Watermelon Belcarra blouse, plus the Counterintuitive Black Birds Skirt. There was also a refashioned cardigan, and I made my flower hair clip.

Day 4 – The What Could Possibly Go Wrong Belcarra blouse, plus the rose-tinted Black Denim Skirt. And again, I had a refashioned cardi.

So far, I’ve realised that I just don’t enjoy wearing the What Could Go Wrong top. I had a hard time making it, and those bad vibes have stuck to it. I fear that once 1st June comes along, it will be for the chop.

I’m already seeing the gaping hole in my me-made wardrobe that is Tops, and wondering how many new tops I can make in the next few days to avoid repeating the same ones week after week. I’ve got a couple of UFOs (it would be nice to be able to call them Works in Progress but I think that would be self-deluding!) which might come in handy, if I could only actually F them. This might be my push to do so.

Right, let’s do this!

It’s that time again – two days before May begins, I’ve signed up for Me Made May 2016.



I, Béa of Béa’s Sewing Adventures, sign up as a participant of Me-Made-May ’16. I will endeavour to wear Me-Made outfits (not including shoes, tights and undies) each day for the duration of May 2016.

I have to confess, this is basically the same formal pledge as last year. The only thing that I’ve changed is that last year I allowed myself to wear non-me-made coats, but not so this year. If I need outerwear, it will be the Winter Princess Cloak. It’s not exactly waterproof, so let’s hope May isn’t too rainy.

My main personal goal for #MMMay16 is to make sure that I do actually photograph my outfits, and share them on the Flickr group and/or Instagram. And specifically, not wimp out. This is part of me getting back into the online sewing community and feeling like I’m sharing in the fun.

I’ve been a complete last-minute-Mary, so I haven’t really done much preparation for MMMay. I’m going to sort out my wardrobe, and try and hide anything that isn’t me-made. I tend to wear my makes reasonably often anyway, so it should be a case of putting them all together. But I’m aware that I’ve got gaps, especially in the jumpers and cardigans department, because knitting takes SOOO long. But I think I’m ok for tops and skirts and dresses. I could probably do with a couple more pairs of leggings and tops for teaching dance, but I may manage with skirts and dance dresses that I’ve made.

It will be a chance to catch up on a couple of makes that I haven’t blogged yet.

Wish me luck!