Saturday, May 25, 2013

Me Made May: Week 4

I don't even know.  Is it week four?  It could be.  Anyway the days look pretty much the same regardless so here it goes.

Saturday May 18th I wore one of the maternity tops I made from the Darling Ranges pattern.  I threw in some darts at one point to take out some of the extra poof and while it's far from perfect no one asked me if I was pregnant so I'll call it a win.  I also made that sweater, and will blog it someday if I ever actually finish it.

Sunday May 19th I wore my pink tee, yellow sweater, and new to me thrifted cords.  Whenever I wear all light colored clothes I walk around all day saying "I'm goin' on safari motherfiretrucker."  Well... something like that anyway.  Bonus points if anybody actually gets that reference.

Monday May 20th I wore my mullet skirt and purple tee.  You've seen both of these a few times so this picture is less descriptive and more demonstrative.  Look how twirly =D

Tuesday May 21st I wore the pink knit skirt again.  I clearly need another one of these in a different color.  Or the same color, whatever.  This is the exact same outfit I wore last Tuesday when I failed to get a picture, so ha!  Note the rain boots.  We're having some crazy spring weather around these parts.  It starts out rainy and ends up 70 degrees and sunny, or vice versa.  It makes it really hard to dress for the weather.

Wednesday May 21st I wore the mystery dress again but finally managed to get some (marginally) better pictures so hopefully there'll be a whole blog post about it soon.  As a side note the boy is wearing a shirt I made him with some random Asian lettering on it.  This was far from the best picture of the dress, but how funny is it?  I'm trying to pose and he's got that angry point going.

Thursday May 23rd.  I refuse to apologize for this one.  Mine was the first to grow up in the MySpace age but somewhere between MySpace and Twitter these photos became tolerated acceptable.  Ahh the great things the internet has given us.  Anyway, I'm wearing my chevron skirt at the very end of a loong day.  That coffee cup is not from today and will be meeting the rest of the garbage tomorrow morning.  Promise

Friday May 24th I wore my new sleeveless DR again, and I was glad I did since it broke 70 in the afternoon (albeit briefly).  What an awful picture but here it is.  I like to let the grass grow wild like this because I'm lazy it makes me feel like I'm in the jungle when I get out of the car.

And there you have it.  Doing Me Made May this year has given me a lot of things to think about.  Why do I make things and what do I really want to make?  And how can I go about it being as green as possible?  

I started typing out some more thoughts on the subject but it was getting pretty long (and heavy) so I might just save it for a random post.  Hope everybody is getting into the spirit of Me Made May!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Paisley Darling!

You may remember the sneak peek of this shirt from last week.  So here's the scoop:

Horrid MySpace quality photo
I bought this sheet at Goodwill with the express purpose of injecting some 60's paisley shirt love into my wardrobe.  I found a Threads button up shirt pattern on clearance at the local fabric store and figured for $2 it'd be worth a shot.  Sadly the result was lackluster.  You saw it briefly (and blurrily) at the end of Me Made May Week 2 and once I get the sleeves fixed you'll see it some more.  After spending sooo much time (collar stands are hard, yo) on something so lackluster I wanted some instant gratification so I returned to an old favorite.

Can you feel the happy?  Not really, but it's there.
As you can probably guess from the title I used the Darling Ranges dress-turned-shirt pattern with the collar piece from some random dress pattern I haven't even tried out yet.  The collar is a bit, erm, large... but I've decided I like it.  It's retro, if you will.  And you will here, because this is my blog which means I make the rules here.

Oooh... So pointy
Besides, all the better for collar popping amiright?

Totally epic collar pop
Since I've made this pattern in it's various forms about a bajillion times there's not a whole lot left to say about construction I guess. 

Weirdly awkward photo, but aren't the rhodies pretty?\
Except that I raised the neckline about an inch and a half.  This feels a lot more work appropriate to me.  Unfortunately I think that this modification has somehow introduced an excess of fabric just below the shoulder and above the boobage creating a liiitle bit of fabric pooling.  
Are you staring at my boob pooling?  Gah! Don't look!  Just kidding; go ahead
I have a hunch that if I take out a smidge from the front shoulder and maybe level out the slant a bit (square shoulders + slanted pattern pieces = no bueno) it should fix the problem.  How long has it been since this pattern at all resembled the Darling Ranges dress?  And how weird is it that I never actually made up the pattern as written with the dirndl skirt and side pockets and everything yet I've made so many modified versions?

One thing I haven't done but need to: SWAYBACK ADJUSTMENT!!!!!
  Since spring has been doing it's violent meandering thing lately (meaning that it was 80 degrees two days last week, raining balls and cold today, and a little bit of everything between has happened between the two including crazy gale force winds that take down trees!) I realized I have a serious dearth of summer tops in my meager wardrobe.  Is that the longest most pointless sentence you've ever read?  I'll bet it is.  This pattern is great sleeveless.  It's got just the right amount of coverage and binding the armholes with bias tape instead of the pure evil that are facings is genius.  Easy peasy =

You can sort of see the totally randumb green thread I used for everything: topstitching, sewing on white buttons, etc.  I had this thread leftover from... something.  I couldn't find any white thread and I wanted to sew noooow.  So I grabbed this not-really-matchy avacado green thread and I thought it would stand out.  It turns out nothing stands out agains this crazy paisley haha!  This picture totally fails to show you two important features of this top.  First, I used all different buttons.  They're all white, they all have two holes, and they're generally the same size, but they're all slightly different.  This was (believe it or not) intentional.  I've seen some reeally bold mismatched buttons here and there lately and it's a look I can get into, especially seeing as how I bought a huge bag of assorted buttons from Goodwill awhile ago and am slowly realizing how few matching sets there are :P

This photo has nothing to do with what you are about to read but it;s wonderfully awkward non?
The second thing this picture fails to really show is the total lack of matching up of those under bust seams is happening here.  See my fingers?  That's where the seams are.  Yeah, I know.  WTF?  Where was I looking when that happened cuz usually I'm all over that one thing.  If nothing else I at least try to match up those big seams.  By the way, the photo above has nothing to do with this paragraph, I'm just trying to stick to the format: paragraph --> picture ---> paragraph---->  etc, etc....

Time to Make: 4ish hours over two days

Cost: Basically free, fabric, buttons, interfacing, pattern, and even weird green thread all from stash

Verdict:  Isn't it obvious?  I love it

Make it again?  Again and again and again

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Me Made May - Week 3

Let's see.... Where'd we leave off?  

May 11th - Saturday & May 12th - Sunday

So... most of the day Saturday I wore the purple tee, but I failed to get a picture.  After my shower I put on my bleach stain shirt for the short time before I went to bed just to get the pic.  However, I woke up and put the same shirt on Sunday morning (don't pretend like you don't ever do that) for cleaning, gardening, and generally puttering around.  By the way my iPhone takes totally decent pictures, just not with the self timer app I downloaded.  WTF is this pic so blurry?!

May 13 - Monday

Monday I wore the bow tie tee again.  This shirt is so comfy while still being work appropriate (enough).  I think I really need another one (or two) of these.

May 14 - Tuesday

This cake is a lie.  I wore this skirt, but with a different (non-me-made) top.  I got picked up from work and we went down to Portland for the night, so things were pretty hectic.  Too hectic to remember to snap a pic apparently.  By the way, this is totally not my house.  If the owner should happen upon this pic: cut your grass and people won't think your house is abandoned and take random outfit pictures in front of it.

May 15 - Wednesday

Believe it or not this is the best I ended up with out of a series of pictures.  I wore the purple tee again.  I really need more tee shirts apparently.  As a side note you can kinda see the boy is wearing his Luka hoodie.  He's lived in that thing all winter; it's actually his favorite jacket.  He always picks it out himself.  I definitely foresee making another one of these as soon as he outgrows this one.

May 16 - Thursday

Back to life as usual.  I wore the mullet skirt again.  The more I wear this skirt the more I like it... What's next?  Mint?  Peplums?  We'll see....

May 17 - Friday

Just a teaser photo for today.  I'm wearing my new shirt and want to "reveal" it in a legitimate blog post.  Remember those?  Back when I actually blogged about stuff I made?  Haha just kidding, I don't think I ever did that :-P

We're over half way through May and, while I've managed to wear at least one me-made item every day I haven't succeeded in photographing every day.  I could (and honestly do) blame this on the death of my camera, but I won't bore you any longer.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Me Made May: Week 2

May 4th
Saturday I wore my pink sheet tee shirt and a reloved dress-turned-skirt, so this whole outfit is reloved.  We went to the beach and despite the steady 30 mph winds on the massive flight of stairs I managed to not even flash anybody (I'm pretty sure).  I also discovered my camera is broken, so I apologize in advance for all the crappy iPhone pics you'll be seeing around here for the next little bit.

May 5th
Sunday I wore my bleach stained decorated tee shirt and a pair of capris-turned-shorts (that feels like a cop out, can I even count those?) to clean the house.  I mopped, I cleaned the bathroom.  And even though I let you guys see my pajamas there is no way I'm posting pictures of me in this outfit on the interwebz.  You're welcome.  As a consolation prize here are some pics of the kids in me made clothes.

May 6th
Monday I wore my Vintage Modern Darling (I hear brown and white are very on trend right now, which means my whole wardrobe is in style for the next five minutes!) with my bright yellow sweater.  Since I failed to get pictures in the morning and it was 80 degrees there are no pictures of the whole ensemble.


May 7th
Tuesday I wore a dress you have not seen yet.  And I took really sketchy photos because I suck at this already  I want to keep it under wraps until it gets it's own proper photo shoot.  The shrug/bolero thing is from the thrift.  It has beaded embroidered flowers.

May 8th
Wednesday I wore two me mades: my new pink knit A-line skirt and my Darling Ranges top.  Once again, both reloved! Bazinga  Doing this I'm realizing how much stuff I've made from thrifted and gifted goods.  Now that I know that shirt fits I love it!  It's pretty much my new fave =D

May 9th 
Thursday I wore my houndstooth skirt.  There's also a black slip under there which is me-made (and, aherm, hanging out a bit cuz it's obviously too long for most of my skirts)... but that's about it for today.  The shirt is from the thrift shop.  There was very briefly a me-made sweater involved, but it didn't make the photos.  It's been heatin' up like crazy round these parts.

May 10th 
Friday I wore a UFO.... Or possibly just an epic fail, it's really hard to say.  I've been obsessed with making some button up shirts with collars for work and this is attempt numero uno at one: there's a collar stand and everything.  I promise I'll try and get some better/more pictures to explain.  As a side note, I wanted to show you a little more of my day so here I am in front of Safecoo Field on my lunch break (I didn't go to the arena, though, just the store to buy candy).  I would've taken another pic or two trying to get a better shot but I had to balance my phone on some stranger's car to take this photo and I didn't fancy trying my luck.  Try explaining that one!

I'm not deformed, just crouching down so you can actually see me!  I like this idea, though, so it's fully possible you'll be seeing lots more weirdly awkward/phone balanced on random objects pictures.

And week two is DONE.  Like.a.boss. We should do this every month!  It's ever so much fun =D

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

WIP Wednesday

Sweater number three is almost finished... Although seeing as how I'm wearing it right now it's hard to say when I'll get around to actually finishing it.

Sweater number four is officially cast on. Will I make it to 12 this year? It doesn't look like it does it? Ah well, you'll just have to wait and see.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Pink maxi refashion

As I've mentioned before, I'm trying to get through my big pile of things to "relove".  My dearest mommy has a habit of sending all her unwanted stuff my way, most notably all her big, long, gathered skirts.  This pink knit skirt was in good condition, but totally not my style or size.  Totes my color though, non?

 The before:

And after

This was a really simple, quick refashion.  I basically measured where I wanted it to end and begin, then cut off the old elastic waistband and the excess at the hem.  Then I  tried it on inside out and pinned where I wanted to sew the new side seams.  This skirt had princess style seams, so now there are two old seams on the front, two on the back, and the two side seams that I sewed.  

The waistband is all knit, no elastic, just like a neckband.  I like this for knits, I think it's a nice clean finish.  I cut two pieces measuring half 85% of the body measurement where I wanted the skirt to fall by twice as tall as I wanted the waistband to be (wow, how was that for jibberish?!).  Then I just stretched and sewed.  It probably would've been nice if I'd zigzagged down the seam allowance, but, yeah...  Just, no.  I zigzagged the hem because I broke my twin needle, remember?

I absolutely love this skirt!  It's so comfy but I think it looks pretty good.  Even though it's a knit it looks good with a shirt tucked in or left loose.  I'll be honest; my life is incomplete without a pink A-line skirt and now I have a new one =D  Simple and easy, awesome results.  I really needed a quick, simple project, too.  I feel like I've been having an excessive number of epic sewing fails lately.  You may see a return to simpler projects for awhile...  

And of course I'll show you the fails for the comic value, it's just too soon.  The pain is too fresh.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Me Made May (partial) Week I Roundup

May 1st

For day 1 I wanted to go (sort of) all out.  I wore my chevron skirt and this refashioned purple tee.  Not very business, I realize, but my office errs a bit more on the casual side.  I did wear a blazer, if that makes it better.

May 2nd

I took out the refashioned mullet skirt (refashions are fair game round these parts) for a spin and you know what?  It's twirly and fun... and basically puts all kinds of mullet skirt ideas into my head.  More kool-aid plz!!

May 3rd

Today was the best day of the week for the simple reason that I found out this darling button up actually (mostly) fits now!  It's a little too long and/or too tight to stick my phone in my back pocket, though.  I think it will work better with skirts...  It was also (finally) warm and dry enough in the morning to forego my usual warm hoodie and wear this sweater.  Cheerful!  Today was actually a challenge.  I had no idea what was clean that I could wear with my pants (Friday = yoga day at my office so no skirts).  I think this is an early sign that I need more work-appropriate spring tops.  No worries, though, I've got one almost done, one ready to be refashioned, and a few more in the queue.

 Three days in and so far so good!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Thrifty Thursdays: I love the 90s

I do.  I love the 90s.  I am a child of the 90s.  I love brown cords, Friends, I know all the words to Closing Time, Torn, and all the songs from Everclear's first two albums.

But some things, like this mirror, just need to get wiped clean.  Please excuse my messy sewing room.  Now that I'm in such a smaller space the mess is that much more obvious.

I remember this being in style kind of towards the late 90s/early 00s.  Instead of a regular skirt, the sides on this sucker are suuuper long.  I got it from the Goodwill outlet for, umm, like 20 cents or something like that? (They sell by the pound there; that's right. BY. THE. POUND).  Expect to see a whole mess of refashions soon thanks to them.

Obvs the droopy sides were not workin' for me so I decided to whip up something equally ill thought out and trendy: the high low hem.  Business in the front...

Partay in the back.  This is a pretty moderate high/low hem.  I've seen some seriously crazy ones in the U District....  you know, the place inhabited by masses of the partially educated?  Yeah, that's the one.  Anyway...  I'm not 18 and I don't think I've been on trend, erm, ever?  For realz.  There's something about being trendy that kills me a little bit on the inside.

Yet here I am.  It seemed too boring to simply put an even hem on this thing.  So ya wanna know how I did it?  A stroke of brilliance really, this one.  I turned it sideways and then brought the side-turned-front waaay up.  Don't tell anybody, but I've got a seam running up the center front, one running up the center back, and yet another one on one side.  The asymmetry of the situation would kill me it it wasn't already so purposefully asymmetrical.

 The hem is zigzagged because I broke my twin needle the second I started sewing (always remember to change back to a straight stitch... and that's all there is to say about that). 

 There were originally ties or something on this skirt that the original owner tried to cut off. I think it's worth pointing out that this is not how to go about tie removal. For one thing, if you cut too close then a hole forms, as the tie remover in this situation found out. Even if you don't end up with holes you've got all this extra bulk in the seam allowances (and who needs that?) and the pieces that remain stick out all funny. What I did to fix this situation was just to rip open the seams, remove the offending tie remnants, and then sew the seams right back up. It really doesn't take that long. I've done that before I knew how to sew, though, so I'm here to say it's not that hard; you can still save it!

All in all I like this skirt.  It's fun, it doesn't wrinkle, I don't have t wear a slip with it, and it feels a little extra twirly, like having a tail or something.  I'm not quite a high/low convert yet, but this one's ok I guess.

On a completely unrelated note: I move that we ditch high/low, hi/low, high-low, etc. and just start calling it what it really is: SKIRT MULLET 

Verdict: Twenty cents and twenty minutes WELL SPENT.