Me-Made-May 2017

It's that time of year again to be thinking about Me-Made-May 2017 and  Sweet Zoe from 'So, Zo.... What do you know? has put up her information post and sign-ups for this year.
As she makes clear every year, Me-Made-May is not to pressure anyone to do anything... particularly to photograph oneself each and every day, though some folks endeavor to do so.... but to encourage us to set a personal goal for this set aside month, as well as to maybe use this time to make oneself more mindful of our handmade garments.

Personally I am wearing handmade garments every day now and it would be most unusual at this point in my handmade journey, to wear an entirely rtw outfit.  But oh how I remember the admiration back in 2013, when I first began sewing garments for myself, admiring those lovely ladies who had enough handmade items to participate in a Me-Made-May and how I longed for the opportunity to one day, possibly, be one of 'them.'  2014 was my first year participating in Me-Made-May and wow, what a struggle it was as my handmade garment choices were so few and far between.  That year's month was almost entirely of repeats upon repeats yet as the other participants left such kind encouraging comments, I felt more a sense of motivation to continue sewing for myself than a sense of 'defeatedness'.  At the end of my first year's participation I was now more determined than ever to build/make a handmade wardrobe of choices.  A collage of 2014's photos are below.
In previous years Zoe hosted Me-Made-May on the Flickr platform with another sweet lady hosting on Pinterest.  Flickr has always been sort of THE place for Me-Made-May...... until the birth of Instagram.  Due to the waning interest in Flickr (and Pinterest), Zoe will not be using those platforms this year and sounds like #MMMay17 will be used in blogs and Instagram.  Also instead of weekly giveaways, Zoe will be doing one larger giveaway toward the end of the month.  I never really participated in the giveaways, as my personal goal was all about wearing my handmade clothes and bettering my photography skills.  So this year I will be posting daily photos on IG, as well as activating my Tumblr account to show daily outfits in my sidebar here.  I will not be posting daily photographs here on the blog.  At the most, maybe a weekly summary update....... we'll see.   As always, feel free to follow via IG.

So without further ado..... 

I, Lisa, Lisa's Carolina | Handmade and @lisascarolina on Instagram, sign up as a participant of Me-Made-May '17. I endeavor to wear a handmade garment each day for the duration of May 2017.

Looking forward to Me-Made-May 2017 and hope to see you there too!  And thank you Zoe for hosting again this year.

Happy Sewing Everyone!  :)


Floral Shorts | Itch to Stitch Belize Shorts

I have made a new pair of shorts. 
Last August my friend Sue, the always-inspiring creative talent behind Fadanista, blogged about her test versions of the then-newly released Itch-to-Stitch Belize Skort/Shorts Pattern and I did something I have NEVER done before.  I immediately purchased the .pdf download of the pattern.  Completely amazed myself with the quickness of that decision, but am glad I did as I needed an all around comfortable nice-looking shorts pattern. 
There are 5 different views within this one pattern..... a skort design as well as a couple of different shorts designs.  I chose View B.... a simple flat front with elasticated sides and back.  I also liked the layering feature which enabled me to only print the sizes I wanted.... AND the 1/2" seam allowances are already built in to the pattern.
Photo Credit:  Itch to Stitch Belize Shorts
I followed the pattern's directions completely.  Which also never happens.  ;)  After making so many Ottobre and Burda patterns recently with limited instructions, it was a luxury to follow the step-by-step instructions here.  All seams are serged and then double-needle stitched down including the crotch seam.  I really like this little added detail. 
My size fell between a 2 and a 4 and not wanting a lot of gathers at the back, still cut a 4 and regraded the waist a little smaller thinking I was being oh-so-clever.... but then cut the waist band a solid size 2.... and it fell short to match up properly.  Not to worry, I simply took in a couple of darts on each side of the center back by folding them in and stitching and all worked well.  I really like that these don't scream 'elastic-waist pants' all over, yet have the comfort of an elastic-waist pair of shorts.  And oh the pockets!  Great pockets!  Nice and deep!!
These were made straight from the pattern, with the exception of the slight waistline re-grading, so was curious to see how they would fit my backside..... a usual problem area for me..... and am finding this okay.  Today they are being worn with an old Deer and Doe Plantain top, but I have a new coordinated top in the works.
 They seem a little short?  Maybe?   I may lengthen my next pair a little.
And now for the rest of the story.....  I struggled to find the right weight material I wanted to use on these as I did not want them to be too 'stiff', nor too 'lightweight'..... so after digging around in my stash that had been archived in a box years ago.... I found this floral cotton remnant that seemed a good weight to me.  Excited that it measured the 1 yard needed to make this pattern, I could not understand why my pattern pieces were not fitting on my piece of fabric...... until I measured the width of my fabric and found this piece was a mere 34 1/2" wide!!  Whuuuuttt?!!!  Totally confused at this point I asked the sweet ladies of IG if this could possibly be a vintage piece and the resounding consensus was that it was.  How cool is that?!  I learned from Carolyn, who blogs at Diary of a Sewing Fanatic, that most cotton fabric available in America measured @36" wide until the age of polyester, and then the widths changed to our now common 44/45" wide cotton fabrics.  And this piece just seemed different.... the color saturation went all the way through the selvedge and the 'feel' of it felt finer than an ordinary quilting cotton.  So there you go, I love the way stories are woven through the garments we make. 

Pair #2 out of floral quilting cotton
 Pair #3 out of brushed white twill with addded back jean-style pockets
Happy Sewing Everyone!  :)