It seems obligatory to do a post on the things learnt from Self-Stitched September, the impact it has had on me, especially since I hadn’t done the Me-Made-May challenge. So here goes.
- I had enough pieces to get me through. I’ve been trying hard to focus on practical sewing this time around, and aside from the odd venture into pouffy-skirt territory, I’ve been pretty successful. A big thank-you to everyone who pushed me towards a “full” commitment. It’s good to stretch ourselves a little.
- It pushed me to get more creative with my outfits—layering Lydias and JJs or the Danielle Dress over jeans, even finding ways to style my Kasia skirt—which I still have issues with.
- it pushed me to “step it up” with my photos to reduce the boredom of photographing repeat outfits. Though my photo-quality is still pretty spotty, I think.
- it pushed me to make use of borderline pieces that I probably wouldn’t get much use out of otherwise—like my first black Lydia with the wonky shoulders, or my ex-capri Jalie Jeans, which fit fine but have some construction, ah, idiosyncrasies.
- it clarifies a lot of things about what I like to wear.
- Boring! Although I had enough pieces to get through (without doing laundry every other day), it gets old rotating the same two pairs of pants and the same few shirts, especially when weather necessitated layering or omitting the more summery items. I didn’t get a lot of use out of my cowl-neck tops due to the weather, and I got mighty bored of my variations on JJ and Lydia (especially layered together).
- I wish I had a few more “relief” pieces (like the Danielle dress pictured) for spicing it up when the staples get old. I’m really lusting after a mid-length mermaid skirt like Big in Japan’s or LouTracey’s. The Kasia fits this ‘hole’ but a) I don’t really like it with any of my self-stitched tops, and b) I find the whole pencil-skirt thing a big constricting for everyday wear. I like to walk fast and take stairs two at a time, which is not good for pencil skirts.
- DAILY photos! Tiring, boring. Probably the repetitive garments wouldn’t’ve bothered me quite as much if I hadn’t been photographing them. (I know, this is also part of “the good” because it pushed me to get more creative with my photos)
- I never did find my blue tank top. It’s been MIA all month!
I don’t think my husband or children even noticed that I eschewed all RTW (except jackets, sweaters, and sleepwear… and undies) for the month. I guess this is partly because I was wearing a fair amount before (one piece a day through August and much of July), but still. Way to go, family! Also, it felt really weird to grab a non-self-stitched pair of jeans this morning.
Here’s a link to my Self-Stitched Flickr set. I didn’t manage pics every day, but more than not. You can tell which days I was inspired and having fun and which days were just “bleh let’s get this over with”, can’t you?
So on the whole, I’m glad I did it. I really like the feeling of wearing my own items, even if I don’t like being restricted to just them. It would be fun at some point in the future to have a fully me-made wardrobe, although I don’t think I’m going to exclude the possibility of buying stuff as needed. I hope I didn’t bore you all to tears with the outfit posts—I tried to have a bit of something else in there, even on days when little or no sewing was done.
The Way Forward:
I still need to finish my winter coat, and of course proceed with the Lady Grey. I’m still toying with the idea of turning the muslin (assuming I can get the front working) into a real, light-weight coat. I won’t be able to do the “final” version until I can get fabric, which hopefully will be sometime in October (I have a 50%-off coupon for up to 5m of fabric at Fabricland that expires at the end of October, but funds remain tight in the Tanit-Isis household). I have the lining! Tyo will also need a winter coat at some point this fall, so I need to decide whether to buy or try to make her one. I’m thinking I should hold off on making her one until I’ve tested whether mine will end up being warm enough, which of course means after the winter, which means buying one in the meantime. I’d also like more cardi-wrap-type garments, but again that requires buying substantial amounts of not-cheap fabric.
And, in the purely fun and frilly side of sewing (that oh-so-seductive side I’m trying to avoid), I now have all the materials I should need for a tiered petticoat, and also I’m considering sacrificing some of this red fabric to a retro circle skirt to go over said petticoat. How fun? Plus I still need some madeleine bloomers to go under the pouffy skirt (see above), and maybe some more nighties. I may resort to some of these just because I can use fabric I already have, instead of having to buy more.
So that’s where I am as of this morning, happy to have risen to the challenge but also glad it’s over. My wardrobe is going to feel so massive and well-rounded now… ;)