Me-Made May ’14: Roundup and Reflections

Me Made May '14 RoundupSince this was the first time I’ve ever participated in Me-Made May, it was a great chance to reflect on my me-made wardrobe and my style as a whole. Some of the discoveries I made were surprises, and some were things I would have guessed

Most worn: Scoop Neck Top
This wasn’t a huge surprise to me. Since I’m not working right now, my day-to-day wardrobe is pretty casual and this Scoop Neck tee is a work horse! I bought the fabric for this top for about $3 from the remnants pile at Discount Fabrics in SF, so I’d say I’m definitely getting my money’s worth!!

Not worn: V1152 Wearable Muslin and Unblogged Cocktail Dress
These weren’t a huge surprise ever. I’d expressed my doubts as to whether I’d wear the V1152 red and white polk-a-dot top when I made it and still haven’t made the alterations it needs. The cocktail dress I haven’t blogged because I made it waaaaaaaaaaaaay back in the mid-90’s – it was my high school prom dress!!!! (Maybe I’ll dig up some photos and share some then-and-now pics) This is less of an everyday dress – short, tight and covered in a bright crazy 70’s floral print – so I’m not surprised in the least that it didn’t get worn. It usually only gets pulled out of the closet once or twice a year.

Themes: Jewel Tones and Stripes
I keep meaning to go through all the Wardrobe Architect exercises but I still haven’t gotten around to it. (Tilly also wrote a thoughtful post about sewing for your lifestyle here) One of the things I found cool about Me-Made May was that it was the first time I’ve ever really taken stock of what I wear on a daily basis. Now I have a collection of photos to look at and try to figure out some themes in what I wear. I don’t have any major surprises in the colors and patterns that appear in my wardrobe – I love stripes and tend to gravitate toward jewel tones (teal, bright pink, purple, sapphire blue…).

Me-Made Wardrobe Gaps: Bottoms!!!!
I had NO me-made bottoms when I started this month. None! Clearly that’s a gap I’ve gotta fill. Luckily, Katie from The Creative Counselor is hosting a Back 2 Basics sewalong this week to help people fill in such gaps in their me-made wardrobe. I got a wee bit of an early start on my sewing and finished off a basics skirt that I’ll post before the week is up! I’ve got the fabric for a pair of Thurlows all picked out but I’m not expecting to get them finished before the sewalong is over since I don’t have much experience sewing pants. I’ve got some medium weight magenta jersey that I got for Christmas in my stash too, but I can’t decide what to make!

Surprises: Skirts and Dresses
Many of you have already figured this out, and I’m sure I knew it intuitively and was just ignoring the truth, but I look way cuter in skirts and dresses than I do in jeans! And many of my skirts and dresses are no more difficult to wear! The biggest surprise for me was my (unblogged so far) nautical striped dress. I sewed this up over a year ago but always seem to forget about it and am rarely inspired to wear it. After looking back over the month of wardrobe pictures though, I definitely think it’s one of my cuter casual looks! I will definitely be working it, and skirts, into my wardrobe in general.

Hindrances to Wearing Me-Made Items: 
I noticed a few common themes with the items that were worn less this month.
1) Too fancy. Especially while I’m not working (though to be honest, working in an academic lab didn’t inspire me to wear nice clothes anyway), I just don’t wear a lot of fancy clothes. Believe it or not, I probably looked more pulled together on a daily basis this month than I usually would.
2) Too high maintenance. Although I love it, my first Mathilde blouse didn’t make an appearance until the last half of the month for the laziest reason possible. It needed ironing. Seems like the type of thing that shouldn’t be a hindrance but it was, and I’ll keep that in mind during future fabric shopping.
3) Need work. One of the reasons I didn’t wear my V1152 muslin was because the neckline needed adjustment before wearing it. However, I was finally inspired to increase the size of the sleeve bands on my first Mathilde blouse, so if I like the make enough I’ll take the time to fix it!
4) Location, location, location. This one probably sounds weird. Our master bedroom doesn’t have a closet so we had to buy a wardrobe to hang clothes in our room. Unfortunately, with two tiers of rungs I can’t hang long dresses in the wardrobe without them hanging all over the bottom rung of clothes. So I keep my dresses in the closet in our spare room. Out of sight, out of mind I guess. I’ve taken the dresses that don’t wrinkle much and that are casual enough to be part of my daily wardrobe, folded them over hangers and hung them in my wardrobe. Hopefully this will help me remember I own them and I’ll be inspired to wear them more often!

Did you participate in Me-Made May this year? What insights did you get into your me-made wardrobe? Any big surprises?

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