Me Made May 2018

Me Made May: The Wrap Up

I suffered from a little Me Made May fatigue at the end of the month, but I’m finally back with the wrap up. First… the final outfits! I didn’t capture all of the repeats, but I think you’ll get the gist of how my everyday wardrobe comes together.

On day 15, here I am wearing my Ames Jeans and Dixie DIY Summer Concert Tee, which is a classic everyday combo for me. At this point though, I started feeling like my Ames Jeans were a little tight, due either to shrinkage or a slight bit of weight gain, I’m not sure. At this point, I started having a jeans crisis, resulting in a new pair of Ginger Jeans by the of the month. On the 16th, I dug some old RTW jeans in a boyfriend fit out of the closet and wore a hot off the presses Penny raglan made from a dress I identified for refashion in the first part of the month.

This first outfit is a remix of stuff you saw earlier in the month, a Penny Raglan, a Mabel Skirt, and some Avery Leggings. It looks like the next day I squeezed myself into my Ames Jeans one last time, worn with (another) Ebony Tee turned sweatshirt.

Two more fairly similar outfits here, leggings and a Mabel Skirt are my go-to comfy bottoms option. On the left is my new-ish Summer Concert Tee and on the right, I attempted to drag a Santa Fe tee out of the bottom of the drawer to see if I could convince myself I liked it, but it didn’t work. It was banished to the refashion pile for being too oversized.

At this point it was (kinda) starting to warm up, but I wasn’t ready to bare my legs yet. I dug this big 4 maxi dress out; it was one of the first things I made after I got my serger (within my first year of sewing for sure) and it still gets worn a couple of times a year. And, it pairs well with my Blackwood cardi (but what doesn’t?). The next day was more repeats in a different combo, I wanted to see if a Penny Raglan worked with my Kerry Cargo Pants. Its all a bit oversized, but great for a hot day.

Here are two items I told myself I *had* to wear by the end of May. Can you believe that I hadn’t worn this dress yet? I can’t! It just doesn’t quite work with leggings, so I had to wait for it to warm up. Then, I got up the nerve to wear my Arenite Pants out in public so that I could finally write a review. This is a wearable muslin, but I definitely need to make some changes to the pattern and go for the second attempt. It worked well with my Penny Raglan for a hot day of chasing my friend’s 18 month old around.

You saw this Akita Tunic earlier in the month (and TBH I probably also wore it all the days I didn’t get a photo), which make me realize that I need a few more of these. I just don’t wear too many sleeveless tops here in the burning New Mexican sun, I like to have a little shoulder coverage, and this is a great length and pairs well with leggings. Stashed linen, I’m coming for you!! The next day, I debuted my new Ginger Jeans after faffing about with fit for a week or so. I really like them and I love the high waist. These deserve a post of their own, and maybe another one comparing them with my Ames.

The next day I wore my Ginger Jeans again, you know how it goes when you make something new! I love them and in other not shocking news, they go well with my Summer Concert Tees. This brings me to the final day, which was an ironic conclusion to the month. The summer “field season” started (I’m a geologist) which brought out the biggest gap in my wardrobe. Fortunately, I now have quite a few concord tees that I can wear out in the field, but I haven’t yet managed to sew any pants for field work, these are from Columbia. I applaud Columbia for being at the forefront of the plus-size activewear and gear field, but their draft is REALLY poorly fitting on my body and it is so frustrating to not have more RTW options.

This leads me to some conclusions from MMM, but first I’m going to show you the rest of the items I’ve purged from my closet. These are just the me made items that I pulled out, I’m rather pleased that I actually pulled out quite a few RTW items that I was holding on to for one reason or another. Those are going in the donation bin!

These first two dresses are Tiramisus (remember Cake Patterns and when this dress pattern was all over the blogosphere?). It was one of the first knit patterns I attempted, and I never got the fit right. The first is in a really nice modal knit, which I think can be salvaged into a skirt with very little effort. The second clearly has to go in the bin (or more realistically, the “salvage the fabric for baby leggings” pile). The third tunic is a Cabin and it never fit right through the sleeves. I think simply removing a couple of inches of length will fix that right up! And the fourth dress I tried on, intending to shorten it into a short, but decided I did like it as is and wore it out that very day.

I’m not sure this first tunic is salvageable, its was an experiment that never quite worked out and I’m not sure why it ended up in the closet and not the UFO pile. It might have a Springfield top in its future, but I might just let it got. The next is Mabel skirt that turned out way too long and too frumpy. It may just get donated, I’m not sure its worth the effort. And finally, I have an Alabama Chanin skirt that is probably going to end up as another Penny Raglan. Its simply too thin to be worn on the bottom half, not to mention I’m not sure what I was thinking with a light pink maxi.

So all in all, that is 16 me made items (and a several RTW) out of my closet. It feels good, but I need to make sure I follow through on the refashioning plans or just donate them, otherwise the effort was all for nothing! During May, I also made a new pair of jeans and two Penny Raglans which went into immediate rotation in my closet. And what else did I learn? I’ve identified a few gaps in my wardrobe, which set me on a bit of a rant. Bear with me here (if you would like).

I  have a RTW hoodie that I wear when walking the dog or hanging out around the house that I would like to replace with a me made one. The sleeves are too short and since it fits through the bust, its obviously two sizes too small through the hips and rides up over my booty when I zip it closed. I have my eye on the new hoodie from Scroop Patterns cause it has a great size range and I’ve been meaning to try the company out.

And my final frontier? Field clothes! I’ve been on the fence for a couple of years now about whether or not I want to sew pants to fit this niche. I would like to make a pair of hiking/cargo pants for work wear. Unfortunately I haven’t really found a pattern that would fit all my needs (that doesn’t also require grading), so this project will require a lot of pattern hacking, not to mention a lot of swatching. Any leads on a bottom weight stretch woven in a nylon or nylon blend? And to go with those pants, I need a lightweight sun protection shirt! Obviously there are plenty of patterns that I could use for this, I just need a basic button front pattern, but once again finding the fabric will be an issue and working with that fabric will probably be even more of a nightmare. I have to give major props to Columbia for accommodating us plus size ladies with clothing like this, but I don’t fit their draft at all and there aren’t many other options out there. Their pants don’t fit me well at all, so that is my priority, but I’m semi-ok with wearing shirts that are either huge though the bust but can button up or shirts that I can’t button up through the waist and hips but fit in the shoulders (obviously I wear a tank under those)! So yeah… the work wear struggle continues.

All in all, however, it was another successful Me Made May (my sixth, wtf? time flies). I have lots of mix and match items I’m really happy with and I have finally cleaned a few “not really me anymore” items out of the closet. So I’ll leave you with my favorite outfit of the month.

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As always, thanks for reading and let me know if you have any questions or comments.

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5 thoughts on “Me Made May: The Wrap Up

  1. I’m looking forward to your journey down the workwear path. Don’t be afraid of sewing on nylon fabric. I made a duster of white SPF 50 nylon to wear in Hawaii and it was easy-peasy sewing. Just don’t expect to do any seam easing. (My goal – successful! – was to end my 3.5 week vacation there as white as when I started – and being a Euro-American from Seattle that is fish-belly white!)

    BTW, I made the duster very loose-fitting and it wasn’t hot at all – as with many plus-sized women I don’t tolerate getting hot well at all – and during our vacation, the trade winds had failed and it WAS hot. (Self-drafted pattern, so no pattern number to share.)

    I bought the sunblock nylon at Seattle Fabrics, which specializes in outdoor wear fabrics. They don’t seem to have a “sun protection” category on their website, but I’m sure a phone call would get you the needed information.

    Even better, The Rain Shed in Albany, Oregon, has a swatch kit specifically for sunblock fabrics, and their telephone customer service is stellar.

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    1. Thank you so much Judith. I have looked at both to websites before but I will check them out again now and at least make myself order some swatches! For some reason I get hung up on not completely understand the fabric descriptions and then stall out on ordering any. One day I will visit Seattle Fabrics in person, its a real dream of mine. Thanks for all the information, it sounds like your duster was amazing!

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  2. Have you looked at Rockywood fabrics for your field pants? Their website isn’t the best but they have a lot of performance fabric like what you are looking for I think. I love your me made outfits!

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    1. I think I’ve looked at them in the past, but had forgotten about them. I’ll check them out again! That always seems to be the case with these “gear” fabric companies, they don’t have great websites! Thanks so much!

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