Thursday, April 28, 2016

Me-Made-May ’16 Pledge

Can you believe that May is just a few short days away? That means that it is almost time for Me-Made-May, the month-long event when the sewing community is encouraged to wear and celebrate handmade clothing. It just so happens that the Lizzy House Dress Contest overlaps with Me-Made-May, so I am going to combine the two. Here is my pledge for this year:

“I, Rachel of and @snippetsofsweetness, sign up as a participant of Me-Made-May '16. I endeavor to wear at least one me-made garment each day for the duration of May 2016, and to sew a new dress for the Lizzy House Dress Contest.”

As in previous years, I plan to post weekly summaries on this blog, and daily photos on Instagram. Speaking of previous years, here are my photo mosaics of Me-Made-May ’14 and Me-Made-May ’15, since blog posts are more fun with photos.

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Thursday, April 7, 2016

March 2016 in Review

Hooray for March! I am extra excited about spring’s arrival this year and the increased hours of sunlight. More sunlight means more energy and more energy means more making! Last month, I managed to finish two Wembley Cardigans, a Myrtle Dress, and a navy Triple Luxe Cowl. It might not seem like it, but I am still quilting! In March I worked on my Chaos Quilt blocks and hope to have the top together soon. Also, I finally learned to knit, which is exciting. I'm quite happy with what I accomplished in March, and am brimming over with ideas for what to make next. Here’s to spring!

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Easter Outfit: Chasing Butterflies Myrtle Dress and White Wembley Cardigan

Last year when I was following the Wardrobe Architect challenge, I attempted to build a cohesive handmade capsule wardrobe by sewing a lot of basic clothes in a limited color palette. That was a worthwhile endeavor, but I panicked a little at Christmas and Easter, because I didn't have any special dresses suitable for those holidays. I ended up wearing the same dress for both holidays: my Dotted Boulevard Myrtle Dress. It was the first knit garment I ever made, and I feel comfortable and confident wearing it. This year, I was determined to not let another major holiday pass by without at least attempting a little special occasion sewing, even if it didn’t fit within my self-imposed style guidelines.

Chasing Butterflies Myrtle Dress

Since I get so much wear out of my first Myrtle Dress, I decided to use the same pattern again, making this my third overall Myrtle Dress. Lizzy House's Chasing Butterfly fabric was perfect for the occasion. The symbolism of the butterflies seemed especially appropriate for Easter. The purple coordinated really well with my daughter's store bought Easter dress, and at five years old, she's young enough to enjoy matching Mommy.

Last time I made a knit Myrtle, it was my first time working with the substrate, and I remember it taking forever. With a year and a half more experience under my belt, I whipped this dress up over a weekend. I could scarcely believe how quickly it came together! The only issue I had was cutting out a second back bodice so that I could self line it instead of hemming the neck and armholes. I bought the exact yardage that the pattern called for and that wasn't quite enough fabric for what I wanted to do. I ended up piecing the lining of the back bodice, which no one but me will ever see. Next time, I'll buy an extra quarter yard of fabric, just to be safe.

My two favorite things about the Myrtle dress pattern are the fit and the pockets. The drape of the front bodice and the elastic waist make the fit super forgiving. Putting pockets in a dress is a must for me, and I'll take the added bulk any day, for the sake of convenience.

White Wembley Cardigan

Since Easter in the Pacific Northwest can be wet and chilly, a coordinating cardigan was a must. I am really pleased with how well the Wembley Cardigan pairs with the Myrtle Dress. This is my second Wembley Cardigan and the fabric for this one is Robert Kaufman's Laguna jersey knit in White. While I still love the pattern, the white fabric makes the unfinished seams more obvious when the cardigan flaps open. After making this, I found myself yearning for a serger, just so I could make the insides neater. Even without a serger, it came together quickly, and I managed to figure out the neckband issue that I had with my previous Wembley Cardigan.

Overall, I am very happy with how my Easter outfit turned out. Since I used patterns that I was already familiar with, it came together quickly and stress free, with no last-minute panic sewing. I'm hoping to have a similar experience making a dress for Christmas. Stay tuned!

Note: All photos in this post were taken by my dad, Joe Jeske.