Me Made May: some thoughts

I apologize for the delay in writing and publishing this post. I thought the most boring part would be adding the pictures, but it wasn’t like that. In fact, I added them ten days ago, but my allergies and health issues are distracting me too often from the things that make me happy. I shouldn’t let that happen again, and I’m glad to inform that, even though my allergies haven’t got any better, the situation is more under control.

Here the pictures from Me May Made 2014:

As you can see there are a lot of repeats. I haven’t been sewing for so long and last year I regretted so much not being able to participate, so this year I decided to join even with my small handmade wardrobe. I’m very happy that I decided to do so, because it helped me to recognize gaps, successes and fails.

Let’s take a look at some numbers:

The total winners this month were the Miette Cardigan, Thurlow Trousers and the Lady Skater Dress. That cardigan is so versatile, comfortable and ideal for these temperatures that I should knit at least two more. The fact of being white helps a lot to combine with almost any dress or skirt in my wardrobe. When knitting it I disliked the portion of cotton in the fibers, but now that I wear it, I realize that it’s ideal for this weather, for summer when airco conditions and part of autumn. I should knit another one in another basic color and another one in a vivid color that goes with my wardrobe. I should also give a try to another of Andi‘s cardigans knitted with similar yarn.

The Thurlow trousers combined got 13 days of wear, same as the Miette Cardigan. That’s a lot of wear. I confess that during colder months I wore them even more, easily almost everyday I had a Thurlow on my legs. Now getting warmer and me thinner, it’s happening less and less. This week I rescued my old jeans that were too tight two years ago. I like them but that enormous waist annoys me. I would like to make more Thurlows and a pair of jeans but I don’t know how my weight is going to evolve. I’ve lost 6 kg in 2 months due to my allergies (you know the feeling of crying due to starving?) but as I’ve said, the situation is now under control. I’ve discovered yuca starch and I’m making some experiments and I have already my energy back. Now I need the weight too.

And what to say about the Lady Skater? It’s comfy, flattering and the perfect summer dress. I’m already cutting a second one (where I raised the waist 3 cm) and planning a third one. I should make one in a plain fabric one day. Also the fact of being elastic, makes it wearable despite the fact that my weight is still changing. I expected to make Anna, Bleuet and Bombshell dresses this month, but that’s not going to happen. At least until I stabilize my weight and my life (eating and sport-wise).

The Freija and Owls sweaters got a lot less wear than previous months due to the weather getting warmer, but trust me, winter was spent inside those two sweaters. I’m knitting a second Owls Sweater and I should knit something like that Freija again. Not the same pattern but something similar. I’m at the moment knitting Armande in purple. It’s going to be awesome.

The Cambie Dress was worn only 4 times, but in my defense I should say that it was finished at the beginning of May. Gosh, I love that dress. It’s very comfortable and elegant, and if I didn’t wear it more often was because I think it’s too chick just to go to the bakery (I work from home most of the time). I liked it so much that I decided to make a skirt from the same pattern. The skirt got worn just 2 times, but that’s because I finished it almost at the end of the month. Also, the dress was made during my most heavy weight loss, so it’s a bit loose now, but still wearable.

The Ziggi biker jacket was just worn at the end of the month when we had a cold spell, but I swear that I wore it almost everyday the previous month. That jacket and how I planned was a total success. I’m so happy that I decided to install a quilted lining.

The same goes for the Fleece Renfrew. I wore it a lot in April, but May was a bit warmer so no change to wear it too much.

There were things that got worn just once and finally I know why. The cowl neck dress was a lovely idea, but my knowledge was poor then. The fabric is too thin and the skirt just gets in between my legs when walking. Probably a slip would help here. Also the hem and armscyes look a bit sloppy, again because the fabric is so thin. It was a good idea, but the fabric and execution were wrong. The orange skirt just feels too large now. It’s designed to be worn lower than the natural waist and that doesn’t help now that I’ve lost weight. Also the waist line looks a bit weird. Well, there was undoubtedly some evolution in my sewing. The A-line skirt with patch pockets had a lot of wear last year but not now. Why? Not sure. I think the fact that tends to turn when walking and rubbing against my handbag annoys me a bit. I hate to have to pay too much attention to those things when I’m walking. That also happens to the light blue A-line skirt. I think it’s in part because they sit lower than the original waist and I’ve lost weight. Anyway, that’s why I prefer dresses now (even though the Cambie skirt is a complete success). Another reason is that right now I prefer just under the knee length.

The portrait blouse got worn 4 times, but previous months I wore it more just because I wore less dresses. I like that blouse, but there’s something wrong with it. It wrinkles a bit on the underarms and my execution was not the best. Anyway, I think I need more blouses for the times that I wear trousers and for that Cambie skirt. I’ve recently finished an Alma blouse (still unblogged) and I’m planning a Belcarra blouse, a Black Canvas Tee, a Maria Denmark Edith-Tiki Blouse, and an Archer Tiki Blouse; and I think that’s the right direction.

I really wanted to wear my Lonsdale Dress, but May was not as warm as expected. The problem with the Lonsdale is the bow or knot on the back, and that’s a bit annoying to wear a cardigan over it. I’ll probably modify that if I ever make it again.

I’ve also discovered that I feel more happy when wearing things that I spent quite some time making, and not rushing through the process. I didn’t wear my Hawthorn and i think it’s because I got carried away by the sewalong but I didn’t feel it was my style. The Thurlows, the Lady Skater, the blouse, the Cambie; those were made just when I felt the need of making them. Not rushing to make a deadline. Also, my last Alma blouse is a complete beauty and it took me some days. This is just to say that it’s great to be part of the community and joining sewalongs, but sometimes we need to avoid distractions and make what our heart feels and at our own pace. I’m more of a perfectionist right now. For me, especially in these difficult moments, it’s what makes sense and makes me happy.


Completed: Corduroy Thurlow Trowsers

I like corduroy pants for winter because they feel warm, cozy and comfortable. I had two pairs many years ago and those pants got a lot of use. When I was living in Brussels I wanted more of those corduroy pants because winters were freaking cold over there, too cold for this warm blooded Spanish girl. One of the things that I hated from Brussels (and Belgium in general) was that shops closed around 6 or 6:30 pm so it was impossible to buy anything during the week. That made Saturdays hectic for me. I remember Rue Neuve so crowded, everybody in that same buying frenzy. I used to end up buying too many things without thinking too much just by impulse because Saturdays were the only chance I had to get them. I remember the time I was hunting for those cherished corduroy pants that I spent four consecutive Saturdays looking for them with no result. Corduroy could be trendy years ago but it’s becoming less and less since some time ago already. The only ones I found were skinny pants and that’s a no go for me. I have a mild case of knock knees and thick thighs and I know that that shape of pants doesn’t flatter me at all, so imagine my horror knowing that skinny pants are trendy since some years ago. And I like boot-cut pants! I am so glad that I’m sewing now my own clothes!

If you remember I made a pair of Thurlow Trousers last year and I love them. It’s not only that I could customize them the way I wanted, I can say that they are the most comfortable pair of pants that I own. My thighs have grown thicker in the last year and a half because of Capoeira, and I have a small waist compared to my hips, so you can imagine that I run into a lot of fitting issues with regular pants (tight on the thighs, enormous waistline). That pair of pants is not perfect, but it’s one of the best things I’ve made and they are my favorite. So I had to make them in corduroy!

As I’ve said, corduroy is not trendy anymore, so not only buying RTW corduroy pants is difficult; getting the fabric is also hard, and the shops receive so little of it that it sells out quite fast. When I went to buy this corduroy for my Thurlow I finished the bolt and got more than half a meter for free (they didn’t want to leave it there).

This brown thin whale corduroy is slightly stretchy, and this makes this pants as comfortable as sweat pants. I know that they are not the most fancy pants in the world, but they are what I wanted them to be: cute, warm and comfortable.

I bought a really beautiful fabric for the inside that caught my eye the second I saw it and I knew it was meant for this pants.

The corduroy is not a very elegant fabric, but I just love those lines, the symmetry. I like symmetrical things.

There’s a little bulge on the front of my pants and I may need to fine tune this pattern for the future (but not for my next pair since it’s already cut, hehe) but it was not present on my first pair. It could also be because this fabric is a bit elastic, but it also means that I can sit comfortably in them and eat as much as I can.

Those welt pockets gave me a bit of a headache. The ones in my first pair went fine but I don’t know how I managed to mount these ones the wrong way around. I think I was just too tired, and after my realization I went straight to bed. The day after I fixed them and you wouldn’t be able to tell they were like that before.

I remember that sewing the zipper for my first pair was almost a nightmare. I got it almost right in the end after struggling with it. This one worked like a charm. Being this my third fly-front zipper helped to master the technique.

Like with my first Thurlow I was afraid again of sewing the belt loops, but my machine behaved correctly and they were sewn without any issue. And they look almost professional!

I finished this pair of pants last Thursday and I have worn them everyday since then. The weather has cooled down a bit in the last days and this pair of pants is just what I needed.

I’ve got fabric

for my Thurlow trowsers. I went to the fabric store on Saturday looking for a cotton twill and I must say that I expected to have more options. There were very few colors: white, black, navy blue, military green and grey. Some were 100% cotton and some were a blend. The black and blue looked like they were going to fade with washes, I didn’t want white and no way that I was going to buy military green, so I finally chose grey. It didn’t say if it was 100% cotton, I think it’s a blend. I found then some cotton for the lining that I liked a lot and I went home happy with my purchase. In total it was a bit more than 18 euros, so I don’t think it’s too bad.

I totally see purple bias tape for the seams!

I’m a sewaholic

After much thinking I finally confess: I’m a sewaholic. I’ve been browsing projects made using the Sewaholic patterns for weeks. There were two things that made me take the leap: the fact that these patterns are for pear-shaped bodies like mine and these gorgeous pants!

I was feeling a bit limited in my sewing since I’m only making skirts and dresses, and let’s be honest, what I wear most, especially during the cold months, are pants. One of my favorite pants broke recently. It’s was not from misuse, it was just that it was completely worn down; and it’s not easy to find bootcut pants nowadays! And after much experimenting, I know that this is the shape that flatters me most (the things I would wear if I had perfect legs…).

As the shipment from Canada to Spain is a bit expensive, I decided to purchase two patterns: this Thurlow Trowsers and the Cambie Dress. I bought both patterns on the 6th of this month and exactly 10 days later they arrived at my home. It’s my first time with tissue paper patterns and I’m very glad that all my measurements are in one column! Splendid, I’m size 6, period!

One thing I missed was a metric version in the printed version, but you can always check it online. It comes with written instructions and diagrams that I’m sure will be very useful. I can’t say more for the moment, since I haven’t even cut the pattern, but I’m planning to do it very soon.

For the ones planning on making this pants, please check Lladybird’s site. She’s made several of these and has published on her blog step by step pictures. I’m totally checking those out!