Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Me Made May 2014: Week 3 Recap

The upside of Me Made May: Holy crap, the online sewing community is full of talented, supportive, inspiring ladies! (Gentlemen, are you out there? If so, who's your favorite indie designer? Colette Patterns? Megan Nielsen? Hmmm!?) Instagram, Flickr, blogs... I've gone down the rabbit hole, and I DON'T WANT TO COME OUT.

The downside of Me Made May: I suddenly expect the people in my "real life" to want to talk about French seams and voile and jersey versus interlock and full bust adjustments and bias binding. At length. And with sincere interest.

Check it out: A sewing recap in which I show my face!

Day 11 - Colette Patterns Moneta Dress: My first repeat of the month because it was Mother's Day and nothing says MOM! like a peacock feather dress, amIright? I already gave a little rundown on this one here, but to summarize: I love it. A lot. Oh, and Mother's Day was lovely. Perfect spring weather, time with my family, and my gifts included a bottle of wine that I had totally forgotten about until right now, but now plan to enjoy tonight. That's a win!

Day 12 - Made by Rae Ruby Dress: It's kind of surprising that I haven't worn one of my Rubies already this month since this is my third me-make with the pattern. This is my first dress version, though, so maybe it's more a matter of pants and my disinterest in wearing them this month? Yes. That's it: No pants in May! Unless you made them yourself, in which case, have at it.

Bonus Ruby: I also made a top for my own sweet mom. How cute is she? Hers is a linen blend/voile combo; mine is a cotton-tencel chambray/voile combo. (The latter three are from Hawthorne Threads, in case you're just itching to whip up one of your own.) In terms of construction, these are straight from Rae's pattern, finished with bias binding. Will anyone talk bias binding with me now? Anyone...?

Day 13 - Deer & Doe Plantain T-Shirt: I lurve Deer & Doe's Plantain. I've made this guy at least half a dozen times (again, once for my mom, although she's perfectly capable of whipping one up and likely will now that she sees how awesome it is), and I would have happily paid good money for the pattern. But it's free, and you should all download it if you haven't already, though I suspect that if you've managed to find your way here that you already know all about Deer & Doe, and that you could likely point me to many other super cool free patterns. In which case, do! Please! But I digress. This top is lovely, and it's the perfect mix of fitted and flattering without being lump-and-bump-highlighting clingy. Yes. 

Construction notes: I've tried this shirt in two sizes since I was right on the cusp, but I think I prefer the larger, looser of the two. Maybe it's my fondness for tunic styles and swing tops with skinny jeans, or maybe it's my fondness for cupcakes and extra room for lunch, but either way you can't go wrong. Oh, and I just realized that I actually wore a Plantain last week with my elephant mini, but didn't even mention it in the round-up. Oops! (That one had a slight high-low hem thing going on; this one is right off the pattern.)

In the photo at the top, my blonde mini-me is wearing another Made by Rae pattern, the Flashback Skinny-Tee, turned dress. I feel like I should say something about the fact that we match, but in my defense, that fabric from Heather Ross’ Briar Rose collection is just fantastic. We should all match! Plus, it was a strawberry picking field trip for her school, so come on. My husband is lucky I didn’t insist that he wear berries, too.

Day 14 - Colette Patterns Laurel Dress: Now this one was my first Laurel, and seeing it here, it's my favorite. Blame my years of working at the Gap in the late '90s, but I'm firmly of the belief that you can't go wrong with a denim dress. (Full disclosure: I'm also in love with perfectly folded stacks of clothes, and I mean PERFECTLY.) This dress is actually a denim-chambray, and thanks to my hefty hem (I added length, but changed my mind), it has a perfect built-in weight to keep it from creeping up my legs when I walk, which I do a lot of since my horse-drawn carriage is in the shop.

Construction notes: I dutifully cut out my size as dictated by the pattern, but I ended up going back in and sewing the side seams with a more generous 1-inch allowance. I also fiddled with the invisible zipper for a bit (it was a poor-quality zip and didn't want to have anything to do with the thicker fabric) before realizing that I didn't even need it. I added another 1-inch seam allowance in the back, and this baby can pull on and off without any contortions. I suspect it will be in heavy rotation this summer, with or without the necklace.  

Day 15 - Grainline Studio Scout Tee: Again, it's amazing that I made this far into May without a Scout sighting. I've made this shirt a number of times, with varying lengths and adjustment, but this one is from a rayon challis remnant I found at Joann Fabric, with a couple of extra inches added, and the swing back adjustment Jen describes here. My photographer had already gone to preschool for the day, so I was on my own for these pics, but just as well since this pattern is so thoroughly reviewed online. Anything I could say would be a repeat of a repeat of a repeat... Grainline Studio 4EVA. 

Day 16 - Wiksten Tova Dress: I was in love with the Wiksten Tank pattern the moment I saw it, but it took me a little while to come around on the Tova. As all too often happens, though, I stumbled across someone's version somewhere in my web surfing and decided that I not only loved the Tova, but that I had to make many, many of my own. This is my second take on the pattern (the first is an un-blogged three-quarter sleeve flannel shirt), and it's going to be a summer staple for sure. The fabric is the same cotton-tencel chambray that I used for the top of my Ruby Dress above, and though it might lean a tiny bit toward the sheer side, the weight will be lovely in the dead heat of a North Carolina July. Plus I can always wear a slip. Or interesting underwear.

Construction notes: The Tova directions are thorough, which is great, but the pattern is labeled Intermediate for a reason. During that yoke insertion, I actually felt my shoulders knotting up. I managed my plaid version in the fall just fine, and one side of the yoke for this dress went in without a hitch. But the other side. Oh, the other side! I think I stitched the same few inches three tedious times before it was in somewhat properly. Not a record, but with my thinner fabric, I got antsy each time I had to pull out my seam-ripper. We survived, though, and now I have an easy-to-wear dress. High five! The arm holes are finished with--you guessed it--bias binding. 

Day 17 - Sew Liberated Paloma Top: Another day, another Paloma. There's something to be said for nice fabric: It sews better, it wears better, it lasts longer. This is not nice fabric. But I wanted to work with stripes to show off the features of the top, so mission accomplished? One thing I didn't mention in my Paloma notes last week is Meg's use of Lite Steam-A-Seam 2 in the construction. SO COOL. I highly recommend picking some up before you dive in. It would obviously come in handy with your other knits-sewing, too, so add it to your toolbox. Or don't. That would just mean more for me.

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And that does it for this week! The good news is that I'm almost out of items that I've made but haven't written about. The bad news is that that won't stop me.

Bias binding time?

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