Tag Archive | MMM17

MMM17 – Week 4½ – The final reckoning

And so we come to the end of May. It’s been a lot easier this year, mostly because I have a a larger wardrobe of me-made clothes to play with. Which is great!

My pledge was to wear me-made outfits for the whole of the month, with the exception of undies, tights and shoes. I’m very happy to report that I managed this without any difficulty. My personal challenges were:

  • To make sure I photo-documented each day’s outfits and again I managed this, posting on instagram every day. I was a bit late posting my weekly round ups here, but I suspect that is probably no bad thing.
  • To dress with a bit more care, especially with regard to jewellery and accessories. To be honest, that basically boiled down to handmade jewellery and hair clips. Although I don’t have a lot of handmade jewellery it was enough to keep me going and it encouraged me to start playing with beads again.
  • To get on with some making. That was largely done in advance of May, but I did get a new top finished and I’ve beaded a t-shirt although I didn’t actually wear it. I also started a shirt of which more later.

This felt like a proper summery outfit!

The White Swiss Dot Top
This top was a work in progress that I had started last summer. I had a beautifully light Swiss dot cotton, that I had always intended to make into a Shell top. I wanted to use the pattern from the workshop I did with the Thrifty Stitcher, making the Hong Kong top. I did all the cutting out, but I didn’t have quite enough fabric to cut the front facing on the fold. That’s OK, I told myself, I can easily make the facing from two pieces and sew them together. Unfortunately I wasn’t paying attention when cutting and I totally forgot to add a seam allowance, so was going to need to piece the front facing from three bits, instead of two.

And it didn’t get much further than that…

Until Friday of last week. I was going to a fabric-buying meet-up on the Saturday and I wanted something to wear that would be light and comfortable for a hot day. I pulled out the bag with all the white top pieces and got down to some sewing.

The first thing I did was to piece the front facing to make sure that it was going to work. Once that was done it was a really easy and quick sew. I was having to remember the instructions from two or three years ago, but really this is one of the simplest things that a person can make. I still get very excited by the magic of bagging out!

I wanted to work out what needed to be changed about the pattern. I knew that I needed to adjust the shaping of the sides, under the arms. I’d not made a note of it when I finished the Hong Kong top. So that has now been recorded. I managed to confuse myself with the markings on the side seam, which led to a bigger bust dart than is strictly necessary, and a slightly shorter top. I’ve now corrected the pattern so that I don’t make that mistake again. I also think I need to lengthen the pattern because the top is just a bit too short to tuck in to a skirt, and because it’s a light fabric it’s short enough to get blown up by even a gentle breeze, revealing more than anybody really needs to see. I’m not going to worry about that too much for now, but my plan is to keep an eye out for a suitable cotton that I can use for a border to extend the top a little further.

Anyway, that’s the story of the White Swiss Dot Top

Back to MMM musings and reflection. I wanted to consider which items I didn’t wear this month, to see if there’s any reason why not. When I checked, I found there were three skirts that didn’t make the rotation, one of them because I need to fix the waistband and the other two because I didn’t have the right top to go with them at the time. There was also one dress that I didn’t wear because it wasn’t really weather-appropriate. I’m pretty happy with that – I think it means my handmade wardrobe is flexible enough.

I did find I was using my refashioned and embellished t-shirts quite a bit. I wore eight of them, a couple of them twice in the month. I would like to think that when it comes to me made May next year I will have a few more handmade tops that I can use. I could make a distinction between t-shirts where I have genuinely carried out some refashioning, usually to rework the neckline to make it more comfortable, and t-shirts where I’ve simply added some decoration, without actually changing the shape or structure of the garment.

So now on to the last of the photo compilations:

Day 22 – Treble pink! The Watermelon Belcarra blouse with the self-drafted pink polka dots skirt, and baby pink pearl earrings & bracelet set.
Day 23 – The aforementioned Hong Kong top, with the unremarkable black pull-on skirt. I’ll be honest, that skirt was made almost entirely so that I could have more than one option to wear with this top. The jump ring earrings completed the outfit. The Tuesday Teaching Twofer was all repeats : the crystal embellished t-shirt with the black self drafted cropped leggings and the pink moustache skirt.
Day 24 – I was wearing repeats but in a different combination. It was the navy Juliette blouse with the giant floral half circle skirt, accessorised with the jump ring earrings and the seaside bracelet.
Day 25 – The NotSkater dress along with the earrings from the Little Fishies set.
Day 26 – Back in the Bonkers Zoë Dress, because it’s nice cool cotton. Accessorised with the iridescent blue earrings.
Day 27 – This was the meetup day and the debut of the White Swiss Dot Top. I wore it with the Paisley Leftovers skirt, which I’d  had to fix, because its exposed lace zip was proving to be a bit dodgy. I decided to replace it with a safer concealed zip. Also the Little Fishies jewellery and a me-made flower hair clip.
Day 28 – The Dress of Many Colours with the lemons bracelet and a pink flower hair clip.
Day 29 – The blue roses dress, worn with the iridescent blue glass earrings
Day 30 – A home kind of outfit, as I took today off work. It was the imperfect polka dots belcarra (with the imperfect dots on show) with the unremarkable black skirt.
Day 31 – And finally… the Hong Kong top again, and the counterintuitive black birds skirt, accessorised with the jump ring earrings and the seaside bracelet.

I’ve been totally happy with my wardrobe choices for the month. I don’t have any wardrobe orphans or major gaps so I’m counting this as a successful Me Made May. I was a bit sad as it came to an end because I love being part of this worldwide challenge and I’ll miss seeing everybody’s daily contributions, but I’ve got a whole load of new Instagram friends to follow and it makes life a bit easier to open up my rtw wardrobe again.

As always, my thanks go out to the lovely Zoe of So Zo, for creating this wonderful challenge that brings so many sewers together each year.

Roll on May 2018!

MMM17 – Week 3 – Almost on time!

MMM is still feeling quite easy. That must mean that my handmade wardrobe is fitting seamlessly into my everyday life!

Week 3 went like this:

Day 15 – The #Sewdots no 2 batwing dress was nice and cosy for a not-so-warm day, and I wore it with the Dressmakers Ball pearl jewellery, which gained this outfit a couple of nice compliments – always appreciated!

Day 16 – I wore the Blue Roses dress, with my new Little Fishies jewellery set. I was also teaching, so I wore my grey/blue unblogged leggings and beaded Christmas T-shirt, with the shocking pink moustache skirt.

Day 17 – The first MMM outing for the Cairo Top, with the Counterintuitive Black Birds Skirt. The bird appliqués are getting a bit grungy now, the felt has pilled quite a lot over the years. They’re OK so long as you don’t look up close – fortunately there’s nobody hanging around at my knee level! I wore the baby pink jewellery, because I felt it matched the pink in the top.

Day 18 – The imperfect polka dot belcarra top, tucked in, so you didn’t get to see the imperfect polka dot border, with the Squares and Triangles Circle Skirt. I added my lime bracelet, to match the green in the skirt, and the jump ring earrings, which are fast becoming my earring “neutrals”.

Day 19 – The Two Becomes One t-shirt, with the aubergine ponte skirt, one of my wardrobe essentials. The top was TOTALLY chosen because I wanted to wear my newly made iridescent blue glass tube earrings.

Day 20 – I pulled out the chilli stripe jersey dress, because I love it and it feels summery. But I did end up feeling a bit chilly (ahahaha! see what I did there?), so I added my slouchy teal cardigan, and was surprised at how well they went together. I wore the same earrings, because I was feeling the love!

Day 21 – Another sunny day meant the Under the Sea dress, on which I still haven’t altered the neckline like I wanted to. Same earrings, because they are my new favourites, and they went with the outfit, and the lime bracelet which was also quite matchy.

You know you can keep tabs on all this day by day on Instagram, don’t you? See the daily me-made outfits in real time (hashtagged with the official #mmmay17), and also odd photos of whatever I happen to be doing that I remember to photograph.

MMM17 – Week 2 Catch-up

I’ve got my act together and I’m all ready with Week 2 of #MMM17. It continued to be quite easy, with a couple of skirt repeats, and lots of jewellery repeats.

Day 8 – Chartreuse Belcarra blouse with the aubergine ponte skirt. The jump ring earrings.

Day 9 – The black refashioned t-shirt with the stripy neckline, with the You Mean I’m Wearing Orange?! Skirt. Plus the pink pearl jewellery and a me-made hair flower clip around the back of my head. For dance teaching, I kept the t-shirt and added a pair of leggings I got from Hannan Mahmoud, a costume designer in Cairo, which I adapted because they were indecently low-rise, and a sequined hip scarf which actually belongs with a costume I made a few years ago.

Day 10 – At last! The Jif Lemon Dress came out! I think this remains my favourite ever make. Worn with my lemon bracelet.

Day 11 – The big floral half circle skirt and yet another embellished t-shirt – the one I call the midnight garden tee because of the black flower & bead appliqués. The jump ring earrings AGAIN!

Day 12 – First skirt repeat, the Black & White and Pink All Over skirt teamed with the beaded Christmas tee. I then had my first photo-documentation fail, because I went to the Dressmakers Ball on Friday night and completely forgot to take any pictures of my outfit! I’ve had to gank these from the Crafty Sew & So Facebook page. Go take a look there at all the amazing dresses people made and wore! For the record, I was wearing the Party Skater dress, all beaded up, together with matching hair ornaments, and matching pearl necklace, bracelet and earrings.

Day 13 – I was exhausted from the drive back from the ball, as I didn’t get home till 4.00am, so I didn’t actually get dressed until I had to go out. I was volunteering at the Guildford Wine Festival, where our charity, Oakleaf Enterprise, was running a blind wine tasting table. I had to wear the official Oakleaf t-shirt, but I paired it with my unremarkable black skirt, and the Dressmakers Ball earrings and bracelet.

Day 14 – Was a jimjams day!

So that’s us all caught up.

Oh, that Dressmakers Ball thing…? That was BRILLIANT!!! There were about 100 sewers there, all dressed up to the nines. And the really fun thing was that everyone *loved* it if you asked about their dress. It was so inspiring! I’m already planning next year’s ballgown…

MMM17 – Week 1 Roundup

It’s half way through May and no Me-Made May posts? I’m slacking!

It’s been going very well, and so far it’s been pretty easy. The main thing I’m noticing is that I’ve relied a lot on my refashioned Primark t-shirts, largely because most of the tops I’ve made so far are sleeveless or short-sleeved, and it’s not been the right weather. Hopefully the later half of May will be more summery (ever the optimist!)

I’ve been trying to make sure I wear jewellery every day, to accessorise whatever I’m wearing. I don’t have a great deal of me-made jewellery, but I’ve tried to use what I have got, and I’ve made a couple of extra bits and pieces. On Monday night I pulled out my big bag of beading supplies, and put these little babies together.
IMG_20170515_222002_782 IMG_20170515_222002_785

However, I haven’t done any fabric-based making or refashioning this month yet. I need to crack on with that.

Here is week 1 of #MMM17:

Day 1 –  Navy Juliette top with the pink polka dots skirt. Also baby pink pearl earrings and bracelet.

Day 2 – The Bonkers Zoë Dress. No jewellery, I forgot, my bad. I changed into dance teaching gear, leggings, refashioned tee, moustache skirt. And I remembered to put on some jewellery, same baby pink pearl earrings as Day 1.

Day 3 – Crystal embellished t-shirt, and my new unremarkable black jersey pull-on skirt. Also my jump ring earrings.

Day 4 – Black Juliette top and the Black & White and Pink All Over straight skirt. Seaside bracelet. Also my berry pink cardigan when it got chilly.

Day 5 – Refashioned lilac t-shirt with the new black & white neckline and black denim straight skirt. Baby pink pearl earrings again.

Day 6 – Saturday was a lounging about at home day, so self-drafted leggings and the stripy refashioned t-shirt.

Day 7 – The Under The Sea dress. With the seaside bracelet of course, but it was on the arm holding the selfie-stick!

That’s probably enough to be going on with, I’ll do week 2 in a separate post.

Hurray, hurray for Me-Made May!

MMMay17 logoIt’s that time again! Zoe of ‘So, Zo… What do you know?’ has posted the Sign Up for Me-Made May 2017, in its eighth glorious year.

This will be my fourth year of taking part. My formal pledge remains the same as in the last two years:

I, Béa of Bea’s Sewing Adventures/@missbeacurtis, sign up as a participant of Me-Made-May ’17. I will endeavour to wear Me Made clothing (not including underwear, shoes and tights) each day for the duration of May 2017.

I already wear me-made almost every day anyway, so it’s a case of taking my RTW clothing out of the wardrobe for May and wearing only Me-Made. Beyond that, my personal challenges are:

a) to make sure I photograph my outfit every day and post it on Instagram (I’m @missbeacurtis there). I will post round-ups here. It’s tricky sometimes, as I don’t have a dedicated photography space at home, so be prepared for a load of office selfies.

b) to dress with a bit more care and thoughtfulness, particularly with regard to jewellery and accessories, because I can be very lazy about those.

c) to crack on with some making. Past experience tells me that MMM is a really useful catalyst for completing WIPs and getting on with planned makes, refashions and fix-ups/mending, in the April build-up and during May itself. It’s already started.

Having said all that, May is always a stressful time at work, and I don’t want to make getting dressed in the morning an additional source of stress. So I’m giving myself two Get Out of Jail Free cards (one from Chance, one from Community Chest!). I hope I won’t need them, but they will be there, in case I do.

Fancy taking part yourself? Want more information? Well head on over to Zoe’s sign-up post. It doesn’t need to be a Me-Made-only pledge, it’s entirely personal. That’s what is so great about it, it’s a challenge that works for you, that nudges you to wear and love your handmade clothing more. Everyone needs a different nudge, so you pick one that will be achievable and helpful for you.

I’m starting my preparation. I always need more tops, so I’m going to try and get two or three done as part of the prep, or part of MMM. I’ve tackled two of my WIPs, and an evening of hand-hemming tonight will see them both finished, I reckon. Watch this space!