MMMay: Filling a Niche

The latest me made shawl with a thrifted dress waiting to be altered

Sometimes being good really does pay off.   Worries about having clothes to wear when we visit my grandparents, or really at all this summer have kept me in the sewing room making simple comfy dresses.  Simple dresses can be very enjoyable, but there are some challenging projects and some long standing wish projects on my list that I’d like to get to.  Given 3 hours of available time, I could sew or I could to try to control some of the mess around here.    Only the mess is really starting to bother me and I have the chance to get in on a great yardsale where I will be able to get rid of some of the kids things and anything else I can manage to round up and organize in the next few weeks without 2 or 4 hours of driving (probably more due as I’d have to make multiple trips).  In what is, for me, a standard confluence of motivational events The Curated Closet has also entered my life, which coinsides with the need for another closet overhaul due to continued weightloss (though this may finally have stabilized-at least until summer when I get moving again).

I decided I would just go through that one finally box of either fabric or clothes I’d pulled out closet after the initial rearranging phase yesterday and maybe try on a couple of items in my closet to see if they still fit.  It turns out the box was full of some of my favorite pre-baby or even pre-marriage clothes, which had such fabulous cuts or fabrics that I wanted to try to repurpose or recreate them.  I weeded out a dress, two sweaters and 5 blouses.  An old slip will hopefully become tap pants/French knickers.  Two chiffon dresses that still can’t zip over my chest are tagged to be turned into skirts.  Two sweaters will have some waist shaping added by taking in the side seams a little.  I skirt from the closet was mended and another chiffon dress that I’d bought because I loved the fabric, but which turned out to look like pajamas (custom fit and all) got a small alteration of sewing up half of the neck opening creating a medium V-neck rather than a really deep V or a super high collar.

The best part though was adding 2 skirts, 7 sweaters (of exactly the kind I’d been lamenting the lack of a few days earlier), 6 date night dresses, 1 top and 1 flannel shirt to my closet.  No more making do with the fanciest day dress or hoping one of the three semiformal black dresses I’ve acquired for recent office parties will still fit.  I may not keep everything, but options I love are back in rotation and my husband is on notice that  he has to take me out to dinner somewhere that doesn’t serve children.  All of these are from a time when I didn’t sew for myself and I can see the minor fit issues (dresses and top), but they don’t just fill a slot they are lovely, work for me and give me that much more leeway as I try to create a very me closet and freedom to rearrange my sewing cue a bit.  Maybe I’ll finally make that apron that has been in the cue for 3 years to replace my current apron doesn’t fit my chest and still gets worn daily.

This means that my me-mades really do get to be daily wear without having to keep the best just in case I need to dress up and allowing me to downgrade the most worn or ill-fitting to yardwork and painting.  Also if my weight stabilizes it is time to get serious about lingerie and bras, which get to jump ahead in the cue if I’m not constantly sewing with “let’s not be naked or overly frumpy this season” in mind.  It feels like my wardrobe plan is moving forward again, with clearer goals,  a higher skill level, a better pattern and fabric stash and a whole season ahead to work on it. Yay!

In pledge news, underwear have been worn (Bianca, Coral and Cozumel are in heavy rotation with appearances of earlier purple and teal versions of the same pattern), but no new projects were sewn.  Other me mades were worn as well, including Elsbeth, Rosa, Myrtle, my black Julia Cardi, the purple Caliope shawl shown above my Roses and Thorns shawl.  I’m noting a new trend toward separates and a major wardrobe hole with tops.

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