Me Made May Wrap-Up


Victory! I made it all the way through Me Made May 2014! I have only one more garment to show you, then some reflections.

May 27

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Striped sundress, self drafted, blogged here. It doesn’t come out much because the shoulders are too wide and like to slide off.

There was one other me-made garment that didn’t get photographed – a purple quilter’s cotton wrap skirt. I don’t wear it out much because well… it’s a quilter’s cotton wrap skirt. Nothing fancy. I also paired my white woven tee (May 3rd) with a couple different purchased skirts which didn’t get photographed. Pretty much everything else was repeats from earlier in the month. May 1-5; May 6-12; May 13-21. I think I took a total of 5 cheat days – less than I’d allowed myself! Next year I’ll aim for something me-made every day of the month.


I successfully wore every me-made item in my closet at least once during the month. Some only got one wear; some were worn sooo much! The pink Liesl + Co tee was worn on at least 8 separate days – it’s the clear winner for MMM2014. This is probably my favorite styling of it:

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Things I learned because of MMM2014:

  • While I love to sew garments, I don’t like my outfits to look homemade.
  • I’ve sewn a lot with quilter’s cotton, and those garments were each only worn once. I hate quilter’s cotton – probably because it looks homemade.
  • I wear lots of knit; this means I need to sew more knit.
  • My life is pretty casual. I need more separates – especially tops.
  • A little denim jacket and a wide belt can pull nearly any outfit together.
  • My favorite outfits balance softness and structure. I can’t do head- to- toe floaty or knit.

Which all lead to a resolution:

  • Be braver about apparel fabric!

It’s time to learn the different weights and blends of knit fabric. I also want to explore the world of woven apparel fabric – lawn, gauze, shirting, poplin… so many choices. I bought myself a couple patterns during Memorial Day sales and got new fabric in the mail on Friday. It’s time to build the wardrobe I’ll actually WANT to wear, not random garments on a whim that then sit in the closet forever.

I’m grateful for this challenge! It definitely helped my sewing for myself thought process!

You can see how everyone else wrapped up in the Flikr group.


Me Made May Days 13-21

Hi friends! Are you still wearing what you make? It’s still Me Made May for another week and a half!

After realizing some huge gaps in my wardrobe, I broke a rule – I’ve got fabric on order to make myself at least 3 more things. I rationalize they’re things I’ve been talking about making for a while, but really? I’m addicted to buying fabric.

I’m a fabricaholic on the road to recovery. Just kidding – I’m on the road to the fabric store.

I didn’t take as many pictures this week-plus, due to many of the outfits being repeats. I broke out my maxi dress from Day 1 again, and I’ve stopped counting how many times I’ve worn the pink tee from Day 2. It’s hands-down my favorite piece of clothing, me-made or purchased. I’m making 2 more tees from this pattern (Liesl + Co Metro) once the fabric arrives in a few days.

I’m only posting photos of unique outfits before, but I only took 2 cheat days this posting period. I’m well within my challenge commitment!

May 13 – Tuesday

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This tiered skirt has been around for over four years. It’s super soft denim. I used a long-lost petticoat tutorial (different computer and pre-Pinterest – whatever did we do!) to stitch it up. Simple, kind of boring, just right for a rainy indoor chore day.

May 16 – Friday

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Running errands with my butterfly princes. Yet another styling of my pink Metro t-shirt. This skirt is a purchase but I have fabric on order to make an exact copy.

May 20 – Tuesday

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At home day. It’s the first day it’s been really hot around here, so I broke out my purple interlock Lady Skater dress (first blogged here). I love how this dress looks kind of elegant and pulled together… but really, it’s cotton knit and more comfy than most pajamas. If I had left the house I would have thrown on a skinny belt (and shoes, obviously), but the farthest I went was the back yard. Where it was hot. So no accessories today!

May 21 – Wednesday

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Hey look, what’s that? Yet another outfit combination using the pink Metro tee? And no one is surprised! This shirt may not make it past Me Made May, as much as I’ve been wearing it.

Ten days left to go. I had one more unique outfit, but I wore it to church and ended up spilling coffee before snapping a picture. I’ll add it in on the next post if I remember. Hopefully my fabric package will arrive in the next couple days, too – As much as I love the pink tee, it’s time for variety!  One last laugh for you, as I’ve pondered how little my fabric stash actually has in common with what I feel most comfortable wearing:



Me Made May Days 6-12

Several more days of Me Made May! This has been a fun challenge, thinking through what I’ve made vs. what I actually wear. I’m working on my summer to-sew list now to build my wardrobe more efficiently. Basically? More basics! I don’t live a fancy life; I need more casual every day clothes. I wear the same things over and over and over again. I also don’t like to look homemade. So I need to make more mix and match pieces to combine with my ready-to-wear purchases. I still have 2 skirts and 2 dresses in the closet that haven’t been worn yet; they’re all out of quilter’s cotton so I’m not sure they’ll actually make it out. I’m coming to appreciate things made out of real apparel fabric – the results are much more professional.

May 6 – Tuesday

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At home play day. Self drafted quilters cotton skirt and a purchased tee. I love this skirt, but it’s getting too big. I may modify it to run elastic through the waist. It’s a cute drop waist skirt with a big gore in the front for drape and movement… none of which you can see in this picture!

May 7 – Wednesday

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Simplicity 1810, made last summer and blogged here. Worn with a purchased jean jacket. I wear this dress all. the. time.

May 8 – Thursday

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I had meetings and lunch with friends today, so I grabbed my most purchased-looking clothes… but they’re all me made! The shirt is Liesl + Co Women’s Metro Tee (details here, about halfway down the page) and my upcycled thrift store skirt (details in the same place)

May 9 – Friday

Skip day 🙂 It’s been a crazy busy week and I just threw on purchased jeans and a tank to celebrate surviving to Friday!

May 10 – Saturday

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New Look 6184, blogged here. My denim jacket and wide belt are getting quite the work out this Me Made May! They really pull a look together. We spent the day shopping in Saint Louis for my daughter’s birthday.

May 11 – Sunday

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For church I wore my pink and gray dress, shown above. Then after I changed into Butterick 5644 (details here) with purchased jeans. I don’t really like this top. The bodice is a little too short and the tunic is a little too long. But it’s linen and cool which is good since all the sudden it’s hot and humid around here.

May 12 – Monday

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Liesl + Co Metro Tee paired with New Look 6100 shorts (blogged here). This pink tee is such a favorite! I’ve worn it, what, 3 times in 12 days?! Definitely making more of these! The Riley Blake knit I sewed it from is heavenly. The shorts however are not a favorite. When will I learn to not trust the sizing on purchased patterns? They’re just funny… too big pretty much everywhere, except at the center back seam, which gives me a wedgie. But they work, and it’s hot again. I need to find a shorts pattern I actually like to make it through the summer.

Almost half way through Me Made May 2014! I’m really enjoying this challenge to reflect and actually PLAN what to sew, instead of just hodge podge making what strikes me at the moment. Want to see what others are wearing? Visit the Me Made May Flickr Pool 🙂

Me Made May Days 1-5 {With new clothes!}

It’s Me Made May, where seamstresses commit to wearing clothing they’ve made throughout the month. My pledge and more information are here. I’m going to do summary posts every handful of days through out the month. I’m excited to post days 1-5! I love this opportunity to be creative with my wardrobe, finding the right outfit combinations to use each of the pieces I’ve spent time and effort making over the past couple years.

May 1

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Lady Skater maxi modification, originally blogged here

Not super interesting, but definitely comfortable! I paired it with a cardigan and a wide belt for a busy day at class and babysitting.

May 2

metro tWomen’s Metro T-Shirt from Liesl + Co (with purchased jeans and sweater)

I’ve been wanting to make my own tees for a while. Most of the ones I can find in stores are too short, too tight, too not right for me. As a result, I don’t have many. When this pattern released a few weeks ago I knew it would only be a matter of time before I owned it. The time is now! I sewed this top on the 1st – it pulled together super quickly. I made 2 shirts from start to finish (including taping the pattern together!) between when my daughter went to bed and when I did. This version is made with zero modifications using a 95% cotton 5% lycra knit available here. I could tweak the fit ever so slightly but honestly? I probably won’t – this is the most comfortable tee I’ve ever worn. We spent all day on the 2nd in the car driving. This was after 10 hours going from central Illinois to eastern Tennessee and I look a little rumpled but the shirt didn’t stretch out funny at all (like some do… cough, old navy, cough…)

May 3

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Skirt – self drafted circle skirt with elastic waist. Top – Women’s Metro T-Shirt, modified

Today was wedding day for my dear cousin Erika and her new husband Ken. And it’s a double Me-Made day for me! The ceremony was just beautiful, out on my aunt and uncle’s farm. We had lots of walking to do through the beautiful Smoky Mountains to get to the various parts of the day with a grand finale of swing dancing in the barn. I needed something both beautiful and simple; the right balance between fancy and casual; easy to wear and fun for dancing!

wedding dads

What could be better for swing dancing than a chiffon circle skirt? NOTHING, in my opinion! Light weight and swingy and pretty much perfect. And it moves in such a way that you can’t tell the hem is so not straight. I hemmed each layer before attaching them together. Major no-no on a circle skirt but my time was seriously limited. Will I go back and fix it? Probably not. LOL! Top layer is a floral print chiffon lined with a super light weight polyester.

The top is the Metro tee pattern again, the 2nd shirt I sewed up on May 1st. This time I was using a remnant of fabric I’d picked up somewhere along the way. It’s actually a woven, but it has a fair bit of stretch in it due to the crinkle texture, so I used it anyway. I modified the neckline to be a pretty scoop and slightly shortened the sleeves and hem so that all the pieces would fit on my slightly less than a yard of fabric. I used a favorite shirt of mine to free hand cut the new neckline. The pictures don’t show it well but up close, the white tee is semi sheer and has a lot of texture, so this plain white t-shirt really isn’t!

May 4

I wore all purchased clothes today, because we were making the return trip which for some reason took even longer than the trip down. Must be because we were all so tired from dancing all night.

May 5

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Skirt: Upcycled. Everything else is purchased

This hardly counts as Me-Made, but I’m using it anyway! This khaki skirt was a thrift store find several years ago. It sat around in my closet for ages. I liked the idea of the skirt, but when I first bought it, it was such an awkward length. I’m not sure where it was designed to hit, but on me it was about as unflattering as a skirt could be. So a few months ago I hacked several inches off the bottom and hemmed it to be just above knee length. It gets worn all the time now. Here’s a before shot from earlier in the winter:

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Be sure to check out the Flickr group to find more inspiration of clothing people have made and actually wear! I think that’s my favorite part about this whole challenge – seeing how other seamstresses integrate their creations into their wardrobes. I love the blend of home made / modified and purchased garments. It inspires me and motivates me to keep sewing!

Me Made May 2014


Have you heard of this awesome community project? It’s Me Made May! The challenge is to actually wear the things you’ve made during the month of May. It isn’t a competition – just a personal challenge to sew things that get worn and wear things that get sewn (IE, find those holes in your wardrobe and fill them; and evaluate if you really need another fancy dress).

Last year I somewhat obsessively stalked some of the participants. This year I’m jumping in myself!

The official challenge is one homemade item per day. Due to the constraints of what I have in my wardrobe (I know I’m heavy on dresses and low on absolutely everything else), I’m adjusting the challenge slightly. Here’s my pledge:

‘I, Jenny at Gabi Sunshine, sign up as a participant of Me-Made-May ’14. I endeavor to wear at least one handmade or altered item at least 5 days per week for the duration of May 2014’

That’s all it takes!

Want to find out more? This page explains all the “rules” and goals. You can find the Flickr community here.

There is a “rule” of no panic sewing for the purpose of the challenge, but I do plan on doing some for-me sewing this month. It was already on the schedule so I’m calling it good 🙂 Basic staples are a must have!