I’m Back, With A SURPRISE!

So our flight landed at 1 AM on Monday morning. The trip was amazing and so much fun. Vidcon was huge and a little overwhelming but totally worth it. The trip itself held a lot of surprises for me.

The first and major surprise….

Continue reading “I’m Back, With A SURPRISE!”

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Packing and Prepping

My boyfriend and I leave for California tomorrow. We will be there until the 25th, so I’m not sure what my posting schedule will be like while I’m there. But in the mean time I’ve been working on more projects.

I finished 2 pairs of leggings, using the Patterns 4 Pirates Peg Legs pattern with the contoured waistband. I had to take some length out of the leg and the waistband because they were clearly made for a much taller person than I (being only 5’0″ that isn’t that surprising).

The first pair is a black mystery knit that I found at a church destash for free. It’s nice and thick and has a similar feel to athletic leggings and has quite a bit of stretch in both directions. My second pair is a grey and black chevron print fabric I purchased not long ago from Denverfabrics.com, it’s a double knit 58% Polyester 30% Rayon 10% Nylon 2% Lycra blend. They feel very nice and thick, they have a good amount of stretch, though I almost feel like I should/could have sized up for this pair as there’s a bit of a wiggle dance to get them on over my hips.

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They feel nice on, but definitely feel closer to athletic/compression leggings due to the thickness and how fitted they are. I lined the front waistband with the same fabric and this might have been a mistake as it has made it thicker and less stretchy. I knew it would lessen the stretch some, but I guess I didn’t realize by how much.

So for my next pair, which I’ll be using a black athletic “performance” fabric from Joann’s. I think I’ll size up for those and take a bit more length off the leg around the knee area (As it’s a tad loose there) and a tad more off the height of the waistband since they still sit high on my waist.

I’ve spent the day packing and folding laundry. My boyfriend has decided he was going to get his hair cut and dyed blue and save packing all for tomorrow morning before we have to go to the airport for our flight. We have an evening flight, but still, that’s cutting it pretty close. My clothes are packed, I’m taking my favorite 2 handmade tshirts: my seafoam plantain and my purple hemlock; and my maroon wren dress, my charcoal high waist shorts from the Mia Jeans pattern, and some handmade undies and bras. Everything else is rtw.

I’m packing a pair of socks to knit on and my current shawl WIP, the Zostera shawl in Loops & threads woolike ice blue and denim blue. I plan to visit a local yarn shop while in California, so I may start something new while I’m there, or on the flight home.

What do you usually pack for vacations? Do you have a me made vacation capsule? If you did, what would you include in your vacation capsule wardrobe?

The Start of Preparations and a New Pair of Pants

This week has been more laid back and had more planning than actually doing. Though a lot still got done.

Last weekend, my boyfriend and I went strawberry picking. It’s become a yearly tradition for us. This year we picked just over 6 pounds worth, less than last year, but there were a lot more people there this year! Plus we went a tad later in the season, so there were less to choose from. But we still picked a lot of wonderful and flavorful strawberries. I’ve been looking up recipes to use them up while also snacking on them daily. I love going fruit picking, we are hoping to go blueberry picking next month, or when the boyfriend and I get back from California this month. We missed the blueberry season last year, so we are keen on getting there on time this year.

I’ve finished an order this week, a Harley Quinn bra and underwear set. I have another order cut out, but haven’t sewn it up yet, I’m hoping to get that done tomorrow. I’ve put my shop on vacation mode this week as well. My boyfriend and I leave for our vacation to California on Friday of next week, so I didn’t want any last minute orders coming in that I wouldn’t be able to get done on time.

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We will be in California until the 24th or 25th, I forget which day our flight home is at the moment, but I have it written down somewhere. And besides, my boyfriend has all that information and is in charge of making sure we are in the right places at the right times.

I also finished those Sew Over It Mia Jeans from the City Break Capsule Wardrobe Ebook. I used a black ponte roma fabric I purchased from Joann’s a while back. It’s gloriously soft and plush and has just enough stretch for them to be easy and comfortable. I would change a few things on my next pair for a better, more comfortable fit though.

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First, the changes I made to the pattern: I graded from a size 8 at the waist, to a size 10 at the hip (both on side seams and center front and back seams) I originally used the size 10 for the legs, but had to take them in, so next time I will grade back down to a size 8 for the legs. Also, the back leg pattern pieces are wider than the front leg pattern pieces, which seemed a little odd to me, but I haven’t made many pants and not any in a while. Next time I’ll narrow the back legs and add a little to the front legs, especially in the knees and just above them in the quads, because right now they pull a little too much when I bend my knee and bag out in the back of the knee. I also shortened the legs by a few inches, so they hit just the right length at the ankle for me, like they are meant to according to the pattern. I may also add a bit to the back rise, as they pull down a bit at the center back.

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Overall, I can definitely see myself making many of these. The pattern is great, the instructions are thorough and clear with many pictures, and they are quick and simple to make. There are only 5 pattern pieces, 6 including the pockets (which I skipped). They go together quick and I had these done within a day.

I’ve been working on a few other things as well. A grey bralette that will go in the shop. and I’m working on a new design, a black satin bra/bralette that I’m working out how I want it as I got.

I have been baking this week as well. As I mentioned earlier we picked a bunch of strawberries so I’ve been playing with recipes. My birthday is also on Sunday, so I’ve started prepping desserts for that. My boyfriend, his parents, and his sister and her husband will be celebrating with me on Sunday, we’ve planned a healthy dinner and desserts. I’ve decided on a nectarine and zucchini salad with herb pesto, a fruit and arugula salad (all kinds of fresh and dried fruit, arugula, cucumber, avocado, sunflower seeds, and blueberry or strawberry balsamic dressing), roasted vegetables, and some oven baked fries. For dessert I’m prepping classic strawberry shortcakes (so biscuits, coconut whipped cream, and sliced strawberries), coconut shortbread-strawberry-coconut bars (think homemade twix but with strawberry jam instead of caramel), chocolate chip cookies, and chocolate cookies (either by themselves or for whoopie pies).

I’m pretty excited. I had my boyfriend try the biscuits (which, as all of my recipes are, are gluten free, vegan, and grain free due to my allergies) and he liked them! I was shocked, expecting him to not like them, but he actually said he thought it was a good dough, I didn’t even have to ask him! So that’s very exciting. We’ve tried a lot of recipes and there have been many that don’t pass the boyfriend test and only very few that have. So it’s nice that I can possibly add another recipe to the tried and true pile.

This coming week will be prepping for the trip, packing, and enjoying time with people this weekend. My boyfriend and I will be going out to look at houses tomorrow. So hopefully we like the area because we are very seriously looking into moving there within the next year. It’s a cute little lake town north of where we currently live.

Now to try and pick what to pack and which knitting projects to bring with me for the trip. I have 2 shawls and a pair of socks on the needles right now (along with a sweater that’s kind of on hold at the moment) so I’m not sure which ones I’ll take and which I’ll leave. I also know we will be stopping at a yarn store while in California, so I need to decide if I want to prepare for that as well.

Do you have anything exciting happening in the next couple weeks?

Productivity

May was a surprisingly productive month for me. I finished a lot of orders for the shop as well as a few new things for the shop and quite a few things for myself.

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I don’t think June will be anywhere near as productive, just because I won’t be home for half of it.

In 2 weeks my boyfriend and I will be making our way to California for a vacation and VidCon. I’m nervous and anxious and excited. I know the boyfriend is very excited, he’s never been to California and he’s very excited for VidCon and meeting a lot of the people he’s been talking to online over the past year and a half. I’m not sure what to expect from the trip, but I’m just trying to be calm and excited about it. I assume we’ll spend most of the time wandering the area, going to downtown Disney and meeting up with people.

I’m planning on taking about 50% me made and 50% rtw clothing with me. In hot weather I tend to stick to dresses or leggings with chiffon tops. I’ll be taking my knitting, but I’m probably only going to take one pair of metal needles and any others will be bamboo, just in case they try to take my needles at the air port. I also know there is a yarn store about 2.5 miles from where we’ll be staying, so I know I’ll be picking up some souvenir yarn there!

As for this week. I finished my Platintain Tee tank top. I don’t know how I feel about it right now. I have been having a lot of bad body image days so I’m not loving how it looks on me. But it’s finished at least. I did my normal curved hem and I added armhole binding to finish the armholes. It looks nice on the table, but I’m not sure. Then again, it’s not my color, so that might also be swaying my opinion towards the negative.

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I finished a pair of socks that I started on monday evening, and they were off the needles by friday evening. I used Loops and Threads Woolike yarn in the Ice Blue colorway for the heels, toes, and cuffs, and I used the leftovers of my Knit Picks Felici yarn in the Slumber Party colorway. I had made my boyfriends mom a pair of socks with the felici for her birthday and had about 20 grams leftover, and knew I could probably squeeze a pair of shorty socks with contrasting heels/toes/cuffs out of it for myself. I love the felici yarn and as soon as they are back in stock I need to buy a ton of it.

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And I’m knitting away at my Wendy’s Fern Shawl, it’s getting there. I’m almost done with the 3rd garter section. I’ve also started another shawl, using the Woolike yarn from my socks, and I’ll be adding in the Woolike in Denim Blue as the contrasting color for the Zostera Shawl . This shawl is so pretty and so different from anything I’ve knitted before that I can’t wait to see how it turns out. I’m still on the first section, but I love the texture the stitch pattern is creating right now. It’s very… popcorny? I just keep saying “just one more repeat” whenever I pick this up to knit on.

I’m planning on casting on another pair of socks. probably another vanilla pair right now, but I haven’t decided. I have a crazy zaberball that I want to start, but I also have 2 other yarns caked up and ready to go that I want to use Mina’s NYC sock club patterns for. So I feel like I should save the vanilla crazy socks for the airplane ride, and work on a pair of the patterned socks right now.

What are your plans for this month?

So How Did Me Made May Go?

I think it went fantastically.

There were ups and downs and it made me a lot more conscious of what I was wearing/putting on my body and what I constantly reached for in my wardrobe.

I knew my gaps before I started, and I still agree with those, but I think I found a few more. My first gaps that I need to fill are: more comfy tshirts (preferably some darker colored ones, as all my me mades are light and almost all my rtw are dark), LEGGINGS (because I live in them, though that might change now with the finding of a new pattern this week…). The other gaps I found were: layering pieces, I really need some cardigans, cropped and regular length, and some sweaters to layer over my dresses, as well as more cool weather appropriate dresses. All of my dresses are for mid summer weather, they’re lightweight and either short sleeved or sleeveless.

I know if I were to do this challenge again in the winter, I’d have almost nothing to wear. So I do think that will be my next focus, once I get a few more warm weather items busted out (I’m looking at you shorts and tank tops and summer dresses!)

I also know that I need to find patterns that work with what’s in my fabric stash, I have a lot of wovens in my stash and hardly any knits. So I really need to figure out how to stash bust these wovens and actually wear them.

Most Worn From Me Made May 2017:

Me Made Bras and Undies, of course. But as far as actual clothes go here are the top 4:

  1. My Seafoam Rayon vneck Plantain tee, which I wore a total of 5 times this month
  2. My Periwinkle Short Sleeved Hemlock Tee in a purple sweater knit, I wore this a total of 3 times
  3. My Marled Blue Sweater Using the Plantain tee pattern, I wore this one 3 times as well.
  4. My Maroon Wren Dress, I wore this 2 times, and would have worn it more if the weather was a tad warmer.

So you can see the trend here of what I prefer to wear from day to day: tshirts

Right now I’m focusing on things I’d want to wear and take with me on vacation in a couple weeks. My boyfriend and I will be in California for 1 1/2 weeks. I know I’ll be packing my plantain tee, hemlock, and maroon wren dress, as mentioned above in my top 4. I’ll be taking the new shorts I just finished and I’m hoping to whip up a bunch more me made undies to take with me. I’ve been thinking about making myself another bra as well, so I might try to get that finished before the trip too.

Will You continue to wear me made items as often as you did during the challenge?

While I definitely think I’ll be wearing me made items a lot more than I was before me made may, I don’t think I’ll be wearing me mades every day. I am hoping to keep up with maybe 2 or 3 items a week.

What new goals do you have for your me made wardrobe now that this challenge is over?

I really want to swap out my entire underwear drawer with me made undies. I don’t think this is going to be too difficult due to undies being very quick to sew up. I also need to get rid of a lot of my rtw undies as they’re pretty old and ratty at this point. So my goal is to make a new pair for every pair I throw out (or, more realistically, throw out a pair for every pair I make haha).

Another goal I have is to be more conscious of what I wear from day to day and to not just go back to over sized men’s tshirts and leggings every day. I want to wear things that make me feel better about my body and not just hide my body. I’m hoping this will get easier as I make more items for myself, but right now I do have to make a conscious effort to not grab those comfy tees and leggings every morning.

Did Me Made May affect you in a way you weren’t expecting?

Yes. While making me more conscious of what I was wearing, it also made me more conscious of my body as well. I have gotten into the habit of hiding my body under my clothes, and that just wasn’t something I could do during this challenge. So it was hard for me to deal with but at the moment, I am feeling a bit better about my body, but it’s still very hard.

It also put into perspective how unrealistic my style goals were. While they weren’t crazy out there, I did find myself preferring comfort over style and my goal “Aesthetic” was more style and still comfortable, but not as much as what I like to wear. So will I be wearing jeans and button down shirts or nice blouses on a daily basis? Not any time in the near future! But I have learned to think more creatively about finding a middle ground. I have the Sew Over It City Break Capsule Ebook and have made a pair of shorts from the Mia Jeans Pattern and definitely plan to make a pair of full pants from them, so those I think are the perfect compromise between cute (but uncomfortable) jeans and my go to leggings. They’re stylish, but still extremely comfortable and actually flattering. As far as nice blouses go, I think I just need to go towards something looser and more casual, so I do want to make the Alex Shirt Pattern from that same Sew Over It Ebook, which is a very oversized button down shirt. I feel like styles like that and maybe the archer shirt and popover variation could be some good go to patterns for me, as they have a relaxed fit and should be comfortable, but also look a little more stylish than a baggy men’s tshirt. 😉

This also ended up being my most productive month creatively so far this year. I filled up the list space on my planner with all the finished items from this month. It was a very busy month for my etsy shop, and for myself as well, so it was shocking that I got so much finished with everything going on. My sewing machine was broken for almost the first 2 weeks of the month, then I was on a road trip and had to prep and pack for that, so that took up 4 days (one day to pack, 3 days for the trip), and the general social activity in my regular life, so half the time during the weekends we were out away from the house and so I wasn’t making anything then either. So it’s amazing how much I got done! I’m very proud of myself.

Overall, if you are interested in doing a challenge like this but aren’t sure if you can do it, I say just go for it. You won’t know until you try, and if you don’t meet your goal by the end, then you’ll have learned what you need to do for next time!