Friday, June 7, 2013

a (late) me-made-may '13 wrap-up and my indie creation

Sorry I'm so late for my last MMM '13 post! After my last post I wore:

  • a self-drafted black knit pencil skirt out to dinner with Mr. Sew Rachel on the evening of May 23rd. I made the skirt in April for an opening night party when visiting my sister in Lancaster, PA. (She was working at at theater in the middle of Amish country. Weird, right?) I haven't blogged it yet, but will soon, I promise!
  • my striped cardigan to work on May 27th. I love this pattern! It was a great free download from the iCandy Handmade blog. Note to self: make more of these!

  • and out with a couple girlfriend on May 30th I wore this:

Yup, that's a self-portrait of my bottom half! I finished this great self-drafted maxi skirt that same week. Again, yet to be blogged so this is a teaser!

Overall, Me-Made-May '13 was totally successful! I exceeded my pledge of wearing handmade twice a week, and found that it was actually was not hard to reach for handmade in my closet.  Overall this month wore 11 handmade garments (7 skirts, 1 dress, 1 pair lounge pants (yoga jeans), and 2 tops), wore handmade on 15 occasions, and finished 5 new items, including one for someone else! WOO HOO! Maybe for MMM '14 I'll be able to pledge a whole month of handmade! I learned that skirts are both easiest to make and to wear. I also learned that my blogging is not keeping up with my sewing! I promise to work on that, and so on that note...

TA DA! Here is my first project from my independent pattern purchases! It's Megan Nielsen's Eucalypt Tank. I love that she includes instructions for french seams right in the pattern directions.  I think this would be a great pattern for someone learning to sew. The neck and armholes are finished with self bias strips, which I had never done and was a little nervous. But the instructions were nice and clear, and look how nice they came out on the front!

The inside was another story. I found a didn't enough fabric to fold the raw edge of the bias strip under to finish, most likely due to my uneven cutting. I thought I had found a smart solution by leaving the raw edges, then covering them with a fine, fusible stay tape to prevent fraying. WRONG! The stay tape didn't stick, I had to peel it all off, and ended up with this big frayed mess:

So I was left carefully cutting all the binding off at the neck and arm openings and will start again. THIS TIME I'm using a rotary cutter for nice strait cuts and making my strips just a wee bit wider for some more wiggle room when stitching it on. Always still learning!


  1. Well done on such a success May!!! Sounds like you killed it. Can't wait to see you sign up with an amped up pledge next year! And what a beautiful tank top. The fabric is divine and the finish (from the outside at least, where it matters!) looks incredible. Don't be down about having to have learnt a lesson, these hurdles are invaluable for working out what to do next time you are faced with a similar situation. Again, well done. Zoe xxx

    1. Thanks, Zoe! Ever since I started reading sewing blogs late last year I wanted to take part in one of these challenges. I am so proud that I was able to successfully do that after less than 6 months of sewing!

      As for the bias binding, my second attempt came out just perfect! In fact, I've decided to use this technique on my current make as well, even though the pattern didn't call for it. Every time I learn a new sewing skill I get so excited and it just makes me want to sew more!

  2. Just hopped on over here from your comment on my Eucalypt blog post! Ooooooh, it's so much fun to see a tank version! That purple fabric you picked is really pretty. It looks really soft and cool for summer too. Or... I bet that it would also look great under a blazer in cooler weather! :-)

    1. I do like this fabric a lot, even if it frayed just by looking at it! I got a bunch of it at $1.99/yard, so it's great for testing new patterns.

      I've also got some bright red rayon that I think would make a great center seam version.