Thursday, 30 May 2013

Week 4: Me Made May 2013

Hello again - it's time for a MMM update! It's week four, and I was feeling the pinch - the weather hasn't been as warm as last year (so far!), so the spring dresses have been languishing in the closet. But I did wear something Me-Made every single day this week, though I may not have the photos to prove it.

Scarf & Minoru jacket - blogged here.
This jacket was my first blog post! I do wear it a lot, but sadly the lining is disintegrating. I'd love to make a new version with a few changes, including using a water resistant fabric (honestly, what good is a hood when it's going to let the rain in?)

Paisley Power blouse - blogged here.
I didn't think I'd be wearing this blouse in May, I think of it as a fall/winter item. But it was quite chilly, so out of the closet it came. I really do like this blouse, it's easy to wear, and got a lot of use this winter.

Day 25: I really wasn't feeling the Me-Mades, but I did wear some Me-Made pj's this weekend. I almost never wear them, so it was good to bring them out of hiding.

Stashbusting T-shirt - blogged here.
Good thing I made this t-shirt, since I've worn it 3 or 4 times already - it's pretty much the only yard-work appropriate Me Made I've got!
Day 27: Same as Day 5 and 16. I think you get the idea. I'm running out of steam here!
Day 28: I reworked the blouse from Day 13, and it's sure to get more wear now. But apparently no photos.
Day 29: The stashbusting t-shirt made it to work - it was a lifting boxes and climbing ladders kind of day.
But not to worry, the final two days are upon us, and I'm even wearing something new today! Tune in on the weekend for my wrap-up post.
We're almost there!

Sunday, 26 May 2013

Stashbusting: May

Well, we're not even at the end of the month, and my May stashbusting is complete! This month: The Knit Challenge.

About a year ago I picked up three metres of this lively number at a Fabricland 3-for-1 sale, and only ended up using about half of it for a dress. It was a bit of an experiment in terms of colour and pattern, so I was happy the fabric was such a steal. However, it is pretty distinctive, and I didn't really want two dresses in the same fabric and struggled to find a use for the rest. But I have a RTW t-shirt that I just love the shape of, a slim straight T with a deep V-neck, so I decided to try and make my own.

 I very unscientifically traced the existing t-shirt for my pattern, cut it out, and serged it together. The one area I was concerned about was the point of the V, but careful scrutiny of the original shirt led me in the right direction. Essentially, the centre front meets at a 90 degree angle, so I just pinned on my neckband for length, marked the stitch line, and sewed the point together before basting and serging it on.

Hey! Math action!

And the neckline lays nice and flat.

My serger is not in love with doing a cover stitch on such a light-weight knit, so I may revert to the twin-needle domestic machine method for the hems if I use such delicate fabric in future.

Of course, now that my stash has been depleted (just a tiny bit), it had to be replenished. On Friday I hit the Textile Museum sale, and the Queen Street strip. Here's what I picked up:

The rolls on the left are from the sale - 6 metres of dark olive linen, 1.5 m of beige striped sweater knit, 1.5 m of dark red light weight knit, 1.35 m of black & white ikat, and a small piece of striped silk. On the right, white denim, blue chambray, black heavy jersey (already halfway into a flamenco skirt), and some fun brown/white stripe that is well on the way to becoming a finished object.

I think that should be enough to keep me busy for a little while! I have solid plans for the store-bought fabrics, and some inklings of what will happen to the rest.

Did anyone else make it to the Textile Museum Sale?

Happy sewing!

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Week 3: Me Made May 2013

Welcome to Week 3! You may have noticed that day 14 and 15 don't appear in week 2, or indeed this week. Stomach flu. Less said the better.

From the Ashes Blouse: worn during week one, blogged here.
Pretty much a repeat of Day 5, but with sandals. And there was no way I was wearing a belt.
Worn: Walk to the library and back, also to get popsicles.

Anouk blouse: blogged here.
Worn: To see The Great Gatsby! But it was sold out. I guess everyone buys tickets online these days - lesson learned!

Stashbusting t-shirt: Soon to be blogged. 
Worn: After whipping it up this morning, gardening and groceries.

Wiksten tank: New make from an older make - this fabric used to be a sundress I wore once. 
Worn: out and about.

Not sure what happened to Day 20.

Vogue 8805: blogged here.
I'm still not sold on this one, but I think I have a plan...

Victory Patterns' Chloe: blogged here. 
And yes, I'm wearing the same shoes. But I did just take this photo today, I swear!

Well, another week down, nine days to go! I've been sewing quite a bit lately, so there should be some new items popping up in the next little while. Meanwhile, if you're in Toronto, check out the More than a Yardage sale at the Textile Museum of Canada this weekend? You never know what you'll find...

Thursday, 16 May 2013

Week Two: Me Made May 2013

Week 2! We're pretty much at the half-way mark now. Here's what I was wearing this past week.

Self-drafted Party in the Back top: same as last week.
 Clover capris: blogged here.
Worn: To work - it was a desk day.
I was really happy with this outfit, not so happy with the wrinkly photos, but that's ok. Two me-mades at the same time!

Bright Green Jeans: self-drafted, unblogged.
Necklace: Me-made a couple of summers ago. Love it still.
Worn: To work, and drinks after. I did have shoes on.

Scarf: I'm counting this as Me-Made, the hand rolled hem took almost 4 hours. It's the fabric I picked up at the Toronto Sewing Blog Meet-up, I couldn't bring myself to chop it up, it's so gorgeous.
Worn: Errands & grocery shopping.

Blouse: Self-drafted, unblogged. It hasn't come out of the closet since last May!
Worn: To the garden centre.

Sweatshirt & matching hot-water bottle cover: h/w bottle cover blogged here.
Worn: Lounging around the house - it was COLD! Yes, I did have pants on. But I was still cold.

Blouse: Vogue 1170. As you can tell from my expression, not a favourite.

Which brings me to my mini-goal for this week: fixing up a few items that just weren't quite right. As soon as I got home on Monday, I took this blouse apart, removing and re-cutting the front, but salvaging the back. It looks OK in the photo, but I could barely lift my arms without the sleeves cutting in to me, and the loose cut means that I'm always worried about my bra peeking through the keyhole - this blouse will just not sit in place! I cut a size smaller than suggested, but still could have taken in 4". And the bias centre front seam was just not flattering. I'm almost done this refashion, and hope to wear the "new" blouse again by the end of the month. I love the print, and want to salvage it!

Happy sewing - bring on Week 3!

Friday, 10 May 2013

Week 1: Me Made May 13

Week One is complete! Here's how I wore my Me Mades this week. I realize now it was a largely self-drafted week. I love sewing from patterns, I find it relaxing to just follow instructions, but if when inspiration strikes, I won't let lack of a pattern stop me.
Bright Green Jeans: Self-drafted, unblogged.
Worn: To work.
Blouse: Colette Sencha with yellow buttons.
Worn: To work, for an extra long day. The bright colours gave me a boost.

Top: Self-drafted, made many years pre-blog.
Worn: To work, then on Saturday for errands.
Yes, I just wore the same outfit two days in a row. That happens sometimes.

Top: Ashes Blouse, blogged here.
Worn: To work.

 Top: Party in the Back, blogged here.
Worn: To work.
I was really pleased with the grey/mustard/ivory colour combo.

Day 7 was a work day filled with cleaning and lifting heavy boxes. No me-mades that day, I'm afraid. It was jeans and a t-shirt I wasn't afraid to get dirty.

All in all, I'm pleased with my first week's results. It was a busy work week, so not too much time for fun stuff, or sewing. We had excellent weather, which certainly helped - it was an explosion of spring flowers everywhere! I'm looking forward to seeing what everyone else has been up to, via the Flickr pool.

See you soon!

Sunday, 5 May 2013

Rising from the Ashes Blouse

Let me begin by saying how happy and relieved I am that this worked out! This is the story of a girl and a blouse - it was love at first sight. The blouse was white silk, it fit perfectly, could be worn anywhere, with anything, in any season. They one day the girl discovered the blouse was worn and discoloured beyond repair. So, with a nervous hand, she unpicked the blouse, traced it off and cut a new one!

Result! Let's have a look, shall we?

Short cap sleeves, open neckline, ties at neck.
The yoke seams are finished with bias binding on the outside.

Cap sleeves, with just the right amount of fullness.

Looks nice from the back - just enough fullness.

At first I thought I would take a pattern using the rub-off method, but after much hemming and hawing, I decided to go ahead and unpick the whole thing (well, half), to get the sleeves just right. Too much pouf would not have made me very happy, and I didn't want to be struggling with these sleeves. Also, the original blouse is no longer fit to wear, and the temptation to put it on again may have been too much!

Construction was fairly straightforward, the yoke seam binding was the trickiest part. The neckline and sleeves are also finished with a narrow bias binding, and I used French seams throughout. And although they are barely visible, the cuffs are finished with a tiny button and fabric loop.

Pretty fabric, too!
This project was an unqualified success, and has already been worn at least three times. I have visions of a new white one, but I haven't come across the perfect fabric yet.

I'm sure this blouse will make a few appearances in May - I've decided to post my Me Made May round-ups mid-week, so stay tuned.

Happy sewing!

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

April Stashbusting: At the Beach!

In my first "grown-up" apartment, my bedroom was decorated with an Indian theme - marigold walls, a princely marionette, and saffron fabric swagged over my bed. It was great while it lasted, but eventually I moved, gave the marionette away, and folded up the 5-6 yards of quite lovely cotton voile and put it in a bin. I thought I might use it as mock-up fabric, but then April's Stashbusting theme "bright colours" came along.

It hangs so nicely!
This is Vogue 1247, by Rachel Comey. It's been pretty popular, and I had been meaning to make it up for some time. I even had a matching thread at the ready, so this is a 100% stash bust.

I was a bit nervous, after my experience with V1170 , which was very large, as well as very weird. I'm still trying to find a way to salvage that one, it may have a post of it's own yet!  So this is really a wearable mock-up/beach top - it's not long enough to be a cover-up, but the neckline is far too sassy for my everyday life.

I cut one size down from the recommended size, which still left plenty of ease. Putting it together was fairly straightforward, it just required a bit of patience with the bias cut and french seams. If I make this top again (which I may, I love the silhouette), I will raise the neckline, but that's the only thing I would change. 

As I mentioned, it has a home in my beach wardrobe - here's a shot from my recent mini-break in Mexico! This was in March, when the sun and sand were a very welcome change from the sleet and snow of home. 

It was so warm!

Well, that was short and sweet! And my next post will branch out from Stashbusting, promise!