Tag Archives: Me Made May ’13

The end of May … phew!

Me Made May draws to a close today and although I totally love the concept (thank you Zoe), I have to admit, I am a little more than relieved that it’s almost over …

Despite being very good at not photographing my efforts and the odd “didn’t you have that on yesterday?”, I’m very pleased to report that I managed to wear one home made item five days a week (I pledged that I would wear at least three, so that’s a positive!). I also attempted to make some trousers (another part of my pledge) and after a lengthy battle that threatened my relationship with my brain (such a puzzle), I gave up, so that’s a fail (… it’s fine, honestly and thank you so much for the encouraging comments on my last post!).

What did I learn? Don’t attempt trousers when you are busy and stressed for a start (the pattern and bits of fabric are now shoved in a carrier at the back of a cupboard). I also realised very quickly that I relied heavily on certain items to get me out of a MMM hole. I recorded everything I wore in my notebook but to be honest, I bored myself with the amount of times I wore a Sorbetto, so I shan’t inflict anymore of the list on you. In fact my outfits revolved around three dresses, five tops and this skirt that I forgot to take a picture of! A multitude of cardi’s helped with variety, but ooh, can you see why I struggled?


Losers? My denim Hollyburn is lovely but not with tights and so, frustratingly it hasn’t been worn yet (the English weather!), so a winner really, just not in May. The real losers in fact, were all the cheap fabric makes, my Mathilde being the biggest culprit, I tried to wear it at least once a week but took it off again straight away. I just can’t get comfy in this version (so clingy), I will have to make another in cotton to do the pattern justice.

Winners? The Sorbettos, Laurel top and Violet (thank you Colette) because they suited me and I could wear them with jeans and throw on a cardigan and really didn’t have to give much time or thought to my outfits (quite handy when I’m busy). My Laurel dress also had its share of wear on chilly days with tights and boots.

In conclusion? MMM ’13 was a bit of a struggle for me, but I’m really pleased I had a go. Yes, I am a bit bored  with the repeat appearances of certain tops. Yes, I could do with a few ‘basics’, the Renfrew is going to be a birthday request I think (you’ll see I’ve linked it just in case Jimmy is reading this). Yes, I have far too many polka dot items (is that possible?) and yes, I need to buy some lovely Liberty cotton (I’m shameless, hello Jimmy). But, and here’s the thing, it’s given me an appreciation of the things I’ve made that do work and most importantly …

… a desire to make lots more.

Have a nice weekend! x



Filed under ranting

Me Made May days 8 to 14

Days 8 – 14:
8th May: Cold enough to be able to wear my Laurel dress with some tights and boots.
9th May: No MMM today, hectic night before and so jeans and jumper for work.
10th May: Spotty Dotty Sorbetto (this is such a useful top) and jeans.
11th May: Sunny pink Sorbetto to brighten up an otherwise dull old day with a green cardigan and jeans.
12th May: No me mades today either but I’m still on target so don’t be too disappointed!
13th May: My London Dress gets another day out and some compliments too.
14th May: Laurel dress again, with charity shop cardi.

Me Made May is very clever. Like a wise parent of a child that thinks they know best, it gently nudges you in the right direction, allowing you to think you came to the correct outcome yourself without any help whatsoever.

For me, I know I have gaping holes in my wardrobe, but the little girl in me (very, very deep inside and refusing to go anywhere because who wants to grow up?) continues to make sweet dresses. Me Made May watches over me each morning and knowingly smiles as I stand in my undies at the open wardrobe and sigh, “Bugger, what the hell can I wear today?” I think it’s time to except MMM knows best and make myself some trousers …

and I will, just as soon as I finish this dress …




Filed under makes, ranting

What to wear …

Well, this could be a very boring post about Me Made May as I haven’t taken any photos of my outfits! I know, it’s very naughty but to be honest, I’ve just been having a nice old time and not worrying about capturing the fashion of the day and I’m afraid you’ll have to take my word for it that I have fulfilled my pledge for week one. So, here’s a run down of days 1–7 …

May 1st: Panic! Is it May 1st already?! I didn’t plan the night before plus I am late for work, so out with the Violet blouse teamed with shop bought (sorry) trousers.
May 2nd: My bright little Laurel and jeans (yes I know, jeans. Damn).
May 3rd and 4th: Erm, I spent these two days clearing out the loft and wore my ancient Levis with my daughter’s t-shirt. It’s Ok though, in my pledge I said I would wear me made clothes for three days a week (phew!)
May 5th: Are you still with me? My purple Sorbetto, spotty, dotty number (the one with sleeves) … and jeans of course.
May 6th: OOh, exciting it’s hot enough for a dress for a friends BBQ! My newly altered London dress today!
May 7th: And its hot again so on with my Swishy Swashy dress. Two Simplicity 2444s one day after the other!

So, what has the challenge done for me this week? Well, I swear my London Dress would still be sadly hanging in the wardrobe with its saggy neckline had it not been for MMM’13. So, I’m very happy that I had the kick up the backside on that one! I’m also looking forward to ‘re-stitching’ some of my early makes and that may expand my choice a little.

And then there’s the question of making some trousers (I haven’t forgotten the pledge), I just need some courage and I’ll get going on that. In the meantime, I can’t stop looking at this … exciting!



Filed under ranting

Dress to impress, or maybe not …

The sewing bloggers meet up of a few weeks ago still brings a smile to my face , it was a great day, sunny and exciting, warm and inviting. I made a dress especially for the event, a bit last minute and a probably a bit rushed but I was determined to make something new. I bought the fabric in a charity shop on the Monday, washed on Tuesday, pressed on Wednesday, cut out Thursday then day off work and stitched on Friday. Finished by, oooh, about 11pm that night!


Look at that! It still had the receipt attached from 1966 and was originally purchased from the Landport Drapery Bazaar in Portsmouth. I did my usual ‘should I cut into this wonderful vintage find’ thing that I do, then I thought ‘how daft’ and snipped away.

I used my favourite pattern, Simplicity 2444 and so it wasn’t a completely silly challenge, even so, it had its moments!


To cut a long story short, the stripes were an absolute pain to line up and this was as good as I could get. The dark, diagonal line running through the pattern is navy so at first I used a navy zip (as you do), but it just looked completely wrong and when my trusty husband agreed that it would annoy me, I unpicked it and inserted a black one … nightmare! The stripes didn’t match, then the piping on the waist didn’t match but finally with lots of swearing deep breaths, I got there. I hand stitched the hem while watching Graham Norton with a glass of wine and it wasn’t until I wore it on Saturday that I started to notice its problems (that’s wine last minute sewing for you!). 

Photo by Digpal Singh

Photo by Digpal Singh

Here I am with the lovely Tamsin from Pimp my curtains and super Catherine from Catherine Daze at the V&A. Yes, that is a name label on my left breast, not an ill advised bit of applique (see more photos of the day here).

My dress as it turns out is a right creaser, the diagonals on the sleeves go in the same direction rather than mirroring each other as they should (I remember cutting them out as well!) and most annoyingly as the day wore on the neck stretched until it resembled a pelican bib – The more I fiddled with it, like an annoying pimple, it just got bigger!

Lizzie: "Look at that shocking neckline!" photo by Digpal Singh

photo by Digpal Singh

You can see it a bit in the above photo but neckline aside, whilst eating the delicious meal later that day, I realised that there wasn’t much room for food and began to wonder if the stitches would hold (they did, it’s fine!).

When I got home, my dress looked as exhausted as I felt …



but at least those stripes match!

As with many of my makes, this dress was in danger of joining the other fails in the box under the bed but, in my Me Made May pledge, I said that: I will revisit past makes and snip and stitch so that I’ll want to wear them. I do like this dress – I can live with the sleeves, I will eat less chocolate to be able to breath in it but that neckline really bothered me and would definitely stop me from wearing it. Today I unpicked it, pressed, stay stitched and re attached the facing with the piping but it still didn’t sit properly. I’m pretty sure my lack of experience is to blame here and I am doing something silly but in the end I gave up and took away the piping and …


now it looks much better. I’m a bit sorry that the piping couldn’t stay but at least now I will wear it … just not on long train journeys or when I’m eating a lot!

MMM is going just fine thank you very much. I am taking twice as long to get ready in the morning but I am sticking to my pledge!


Filed under makes

Another Laurel coming through …

Look, just in time for Me Made May ’13, I have run up another Colette Laurel!


This dress took no time at all to make and I think I’ve finally found a pattern that forgives the use of cheap, unidentifiable fabrics from Walthamstow!


By a stroke of luck I have just realised that I have shoes to match! Look, my favourite colour bias binding (as used on my Bright Little Laurel and sneaked into this make) actually matches my shoes …


The only change I made on this pattern was to make it slightly a-line, but I also jiggled a bit with the armscye and shoulder width and added a tiny bit to the hem.


Even the zip went in pretty well (hmm, though perhaps a hook and eye wouldn’t go amiss there!) .


Okay, so mine is a pretty simple version but the beauty of this pattern is that there is so much room to really personalise your dress and I will certainly make another (collars, short sleeves, ricrac ooh, endless possibilities). Just hop on over to the Flickr page for entries to the Colette contest, what a talented and imaginative bunch of sewists there are out there!

It’s good to see some familiar faces pop up, I love Scruffy’s impressively lovely and huge collection of luscious Laurels and  Taracat has amazed all with her off the planet (that’s an absolute compliment) imagination (fishes and bubbles on a Laurel? Genius)!

A brilliant contest, not only for making everyone get creative but also for giving me an incentive to make a new dress … I can see why everyone is filling their wardrobes with Laurels, it’s addictive!


Filed under makes

Me Made May …


May is always a funny month (clothes-wise) for me. All winter I wear warm thick tights and boots with skirts and dresses and all summer I wear sandals or pumps with skirts and dresses (unless it’s the summer of 2012 when only wellies were worn). I love wearing skirts and dresses, this is a fact.

Now Spring, well that’s a grey area – too warm for tights and too cold for bare legs and I wind up wearing jeans which I neither like nor dislike, all the time. It gets soooo boring!


Thank goodness Me Made May is just around the corner. I have decided to take a good hard look at what I have made and ask myself ‘why is it that I NEVER HAVE ANYTHING TO WEAR!’? In fact, I hardly ever wear what I make and looking at this little lot, it’s something I need to address. Am I making what I fancy rather than what I need? Am I in a rut? I think so. So …

I, Amy of Sylkotwist, sign up as a participant of Me-Made-May ’13. I endeavour to wear at least three items of me made clothes each week for the duration of May 2013. I will revisit past makes and snip and stitch so that I’ll want to wear them and make a pair of trousers because there’s more to life than jeans. Oh, and I will have fun in the process!’

Thanks to Zoe and good luck to everyone participating!


Filed under makes, ranting