Laundry Challenge: Conclusions

I´ve learned a lot of things the past two weeks, so let me share them with you!

  1. I have enough clothes to get me through 2 weeks minimum. I didn´t do laundry for 2 weeks and we´ve only had warm weather so I haven´t even touched the pants/long sleeve t-shirts/cardigans I had selected.
  2. There is no need to throw something in the laundry when it´s only been worn once and not dirty.
  3. I´ve got hardly any laundry now!
  4. I felt pretty good in my clothes the past 2 weeks. So no need to go emergency sewing!

BUT

(there is always a but)

Look at the pictures I pulled from my own IG feed:

 

These are my favourite outfits and they all have things in common:

  • dresses
  • dark colours or jewel tones
  • chambray
  • leopard print
  • belts
  • bolt necklaces/scarfs
  • boots

 

The thing is, I don´t do Summer clothes. I am not a Summer person. I like sunshine, but I don´t like heat. I like layers and I like boots. I like Autumn ´till early Spring. On top of that, I don´t like separates. (unless they are maxi-skirts or wrap tops) I gave it a try, but I just don´t like them. I especially dislike pants and t-shirts. Give me a dress and I´m happy! Not too short, because I don´t like showing my legs too much. Not that I don´t like my legs, I just don´t like showing them. Give me a tunic with a pair of leggings and I´m just as happy. I don´t like button up shirts unless they are chambray. I just don´ t do buttons. I don´t do zippers. I like flowy fabrics, lightweight, movable. My dream fabric is rayon jersey. It´s just a shame that they are hard to come by in nice dark prints.

So basically I´m not a person made to own a wardrobe fit for breastfeeding. And that has been my problem for the last 6 months. Don´t get me wrong, I love breastfeeding and I´m planning to keep doing it but I don´t like wearing accessible clothes. AT ALL! I don´t like altering clothes for breastfeeding, I hate the whole concept. I´m over it, let´s move on. And take the stupid heat wave with you! #endrant

(I think I might be exhausted from night time feedings and in need of a nap.)

Long story short: Enough clothes for Summer, let´s start prepping for Autumn!

 

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Laundry Challenge Week 2: Round-up

Week 2 and also the final week of this Two Week Laundry Challenge. If you are new, find all about it here. If you missed the first round-up, you can find it here.

Week 2 was less about deciding the pros and cons of each outfit and more about determining why these outfits didn´t work before.

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This is one of the ´forgotten´ dresses. I think everyone woman has at least one item of clothing which she likes but somehow it still ends up at the back of her closet and it rarely gets worn. It certainly applies to this dress. I bought this dress last summer early on in my pregnancy. I had spend ages looking for a wrap dress that didn´t wrap around my belly button (Seriously, I knew I had a short torso but this was ridiculous) so when I came across this navy surplice dress on sale I snagged it up. I only wore it a few times during my pregnancy because after a few times the elastic didn´t play nice with my growing belly anymore. I don´t know why I didn´t dig it out sooner this summer but I´m glad I finally did. It´s neutral, can be dressed up or down and it´s perfect for nursing.

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Many many years ago, I bought a maxi skirt (I think the last time the boho trend was fashionable so maybe a decade ago) which was so long (short legs) that I would have to cut off 10¨ in order for it to be wearable. I never did because I didn´t know how to sew. When I finally did, I attached it to a strapless tube top because I wanted a maxi dress. I usually wear it with a short sleeved jersey cardigan but it was just too hot.

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I opted for cut off leggings and a t-shirt on Friday because I couldn´t handle the heat anymore (and neither did baby) so I wasn´t planning on leaving the house. I felt okay in this outfit until my aunt paid me an unannounced visit and I felt frumpy.

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Friday = Ice cream day (it´s just an excuse), so I had to put on something a little more decent to go get it. So I changed out of the leggings and t-shirt and into my new dress.

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I made this skirt last Summer thinking an elastic waistband Megan Nielsen Brumby would be the best thing since sliced bread, It could have been if I hadn´t used elastic to gather it and just used an elastic as a waistband. But I didn´t so the waist ended up really bulky, which looked aweful as a high waisted skirt. When I pulled it lower, my swayback made sure my skirt was 6¨ longer in the front than in the back. I really loved the fabric so I wanted to wear it again, so I chopped off the waistband and I asked my hubby to pin the hem for me… Shouldn´t have done that, it ended up being totally crooked and I ended up chopping off even more to straighten it out. It´s now under the knee length instead of midi length and I´m not sure yet what I think of it.

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This is the other version of the t-shirt that sales lady didn´t want to sell me, with one of my new Moss skirts. Although the skirt doesn´t look tight and is made in my size, it feels tight. I actually only wore this for 15 minutes and then changed into a stretch denim Moss skirt which was far more comfortable.

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On Sunday evening the t-shirt + moss combo had become too warm and I had to go to dinner at my inlaws so I changed into this maxi-dress. This dress started out as a muslin 2 years ago but it had gotten quite a lot of wear last Spring and last Summer. I really love it in Summer, but it´s too bright to wear through to autumn.

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I really really like this outfit. It could become my momiform because True Bias Hudson + Cashmerette Appleton Top are secret pajamas that looked pulled together enough to go to work. Sadly, it was way too hot to wear this yesterday. So I took it off and slipped into my tank dress again. But I need a few more of these for autumn and work.

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I made this Made By Rae Washi Top when I was pregnant with my eldest. I still love it a lot, especially the colours. It´s the only garment made out of quilting cotton I own/wear. It still fits even though I technically need an FBA to get the fit right. It´s not really noticable (especially for people who don´t sew) but the bust dart is about an inch too high. The waistline also doesn´t cover the bottom inch of my bust 😀 Nothing I´m really bothered by so I´ll wear it just the same. The shorts are the ones I made last week. They are comfy but if I make them again, I´ll straighten out the side seam so they don´t cling to my tighs.

This challenge has opened my eyes to some things, first of all that I need a lot less clothes for 2 weeks than I actually think. All the other conclusions would make this post way too long, so stayed tuned for the next one.

 

 

Laundry Challenge Week 1: Round-up

I´m halfway through my Laundry Challenge (read all about it here) and it´s going really well.

I put the rack of clothing right next to my bed so I can see all my clothes when still lying in bed. It makes me really happy each night and each morning to see them hanging there and deciding what I want to wear.

Big Win Number One: I´m excited about wearing my clothes.

I´ve noticed that since there are fewer items to choose from, I don´t get overwhelmed, don´t feel the need to change 500 times and I´m instantly happy with the choices made.

Big Win Number Two: Time saving.

I´ve felt great each day. I hadn´t been feeling all that well these last couple of weeks/months and I know I said I wasn´t going to care about the extra weight but I still do. I don´t want to, but deep down, the extra weight made me feel sad and I felt like I had nothing that made me look good. By choosing the stuff that I liked/loved, I´ve felt great each day the whole week. That´s the first time in months!

Big Win Number Three: Feeling better about my body!

I´ve already refashioned some me-mades that didn´t get worn. Two of those have now been worn and deemed ¨successfull¨.

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Big Win Number Four: More love and less waste!

The Outfits!

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I started off my week with an RTW outfit. This tunic dress is actually a night gown I bought as a birthing shirt 2 years ago. I bought two and this one didn´t get worn in the hospital so I kept it and I love wearing it with navy blue leggings. It´s comfortable and breezy and I´ve copied the shirt a few times. It´s not really suitable for nursing but since I spend most days at home it´s not really a problem.

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This skirt was my first refashion of the week. I call it refashion, you could call it an alteration. I love the fabric for this skirt and used the Myrtle skirt lengthened into a maxi as a pattern. At the time I thought it was a good idea to just use an elastic waistband but it turned out too high waisted and it was never really comfortable. I think I wore it once or twice last Spring but it just didn´t work as it was. So I took off the waistband and added a yoga style waistband instead. It´s still a maxi skirt (even slightly longer now since it sits on my hips) but it´s much more comfortable. I really like the fact that this waistband doesn´t show under my tops.

The t-shirt I´m wearing is actually the traced version of the tunic I wore on day 1. It´s supercomfortable and matches this skirt perfectly, but it didn´t get worn much because it was slightly too short to wear with regular skirts or pants.

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These trousers are my tester version of the Paprika Patterns Amber trousers. I loved wearing them but they are slightly too big and the front crotch was too short. This has been changed in the final pattern so I think I just need to sew a new version of these. Because they are too big around the hips they make my legs look really short. (and they aren´t all that long to begin with)

Top is a simple RTW shirt. I was in doubt between picking this one (think Closet Case files Nettie with scoop neck and medium back) and a more loose fitting dartless woven blouse. I felt great in this t-shirt so when the sales lady told me I should go with the dartless blouse because I needed to hide my big boobs and tummy, I bought two of these t-shirts. I haven´t regretted it for a second 😀

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I made this dress last year after getting pregnant. I was over the moon with this dress but somehow it got pushed to the back of my closet and each time I wanted to wear this, it just didn´t feel right. Somehow, now it did and I felt amazing all day!

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I made three muslins for Simplicity 1064. This is the result after I took it in 8cms on each side. I´ve gone down 3 sizes (to the smallest size in the pattern) since and it still doesn´t fit like I want it to. This one is comfortable but I need to wear a top underneath because otherwise it´s the most indecent piece of clothing ever… I do like the silhouette with the leggings though, so I´m going to let it simmer for a while to see if I want to revisit the pattern.

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I had been saying for weeks that I needed shorts so when temperatures went up that day I had no choice but to make some during baby naptime. True Bias Hudson pattern to the rescue! I´m glad I did, they are not perfect but since I don´t often wear shorts they are good enough and will get worn a lot.

The t-shirt is another one based on the tunic from the first day but the twin needle hem came undone after a couple of wears and it has always been slightly too long. I shortened it by 2,5¨ and it´s much better now!

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This maxi skirt was part of a Myrtle maxi dress but the white top part got stained so it didn´t look nice anymore. I had a two seam tunic in the same fabric so I shortened the tunic to a top and used the chopped off fabric to turn this chopped of skirt into a maxi skirt with yoga style waistband! I thought about dying it because I wasn´t sure I still liked the taupe stripes but I decided to wear it out first and then decided.

The top is a Seamwork Mesa shortened into a top and given a much larger neckline. Same problem here, it turned out slightly too short so it didn´t get worn. Problem solved.

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They predicted super high temperatures for the next three days so I wanted something really breezy to wear. I had already taped the Groove Dress pattern so I altered the neckline and armholes based on an RTW tank in order to create a flowy tank dress. I added a binding to the neckline and armholes. I left the hem raw because it doesn´t fray and because it dips lower in back and front than the sides do and I wasn´t looking forward to hemming all those curves. It was the perfect dress to wear on a very hot summers’day, sadly I managed to get massively sunburned so I have to spend the last hot day inside.

What I´ve learned so far:

  • I love pockets in clothes but somehow I´m too lazy to add them.
  • I prefer low necklines.
  • I keep forgetting to take my boobs into account when decided on a t-shirt length.
  • Accessories finish off an outfit!

I´m looking forward to what next week brings!

The challenge in the laundry conundrum!

Thanks for your responses on yesterday´s post, I´m glad to hear that I´m not the only one.

I finished laundry today (yes, it took me two days…) and the advantage of having all your clothes clean at the same time is that you can really really look at them.

I´ve decided to conduct a little experiment:

I selected the clothes that I liked best out of my entire wardrobe. This wasn´t as easy as I thought because most of my beloved clothes are either too small or not suitable for breastfeeding. Of the ones left, I selected the items on the rack in the picture.

image

I´m going to try and work with these clothes only for the next two weeks. I figured that if I have two weeks worth of clothes, I have my bases for summer covered. (Belgian summer = every type of weather imaginable but mostly rain and very humid)

Does this mean I will not sew for the next two weeks (or afterwards)?

Ofcourse not BUT when I sew it should follow these rules:

  • I need that item of clothing (i.e. I do not own shorts, I should sew shorts)
  • I´ve already cut out the pieces (i.e I cut out a pair of Hudson Pants over the weekend, they can still get sewn)
  • I can refashion items that otherwise would not get worn or would be thrown away (i.e. I have some t-shirts I like but don´t wear because the neckline gapes or they are slightly too long = easy alterations)

My goal is not to have a small mix-and-match wardrobe in the end, because mix-and-match doesn´t work for me. But I want to have a smaller workable wardrobe filled with pieces that´ll actually get worn.

What do you think? Crazy or doable?

 

 

On doing laundry

I was doing laundry just now and it got me thinking. (I hate doing laundry so when I do, it usually takes so long, that I have a lot of extra time to think)

My husband has the exact same wardrobe (give or take a few pieces which had to be replaced) as when I met him 5 years ago. I bought him some new pairs of jeans because the old ones wore out or he gained a few pounds and needed new ones. He got a few new t-shirts to replace others. I even had to force him into buying new shoes because he had been wearing the other pair since before I met him.

When I look at my wardrobe I don´t think I can name a piece of clothing that I owned for more than 5 years. Maybe one cardigan, which I love to pieces and I refuse to let go off. But all the rest of my clothes are still relatively new. I could say this is due to getting pregnant and my changed body afterwards but this would only be part of the story. The biggest part is due to the fact that I learned how to sew 4 years ago. I took up sewing because I needed a hobby and because I usually don´t fit into RTW, but it sucked me into a downward spiral of making clothes and discarding them just as fast.

I´d love to say that I make clothes so poor children shouldn´t but the thing is that all this waste of fabric can´t be environmentally healthy, something I´m usually quite aware of in other aspects of my life.

The problem is that I constantly feel like I have nothing to wear (I know, sounds like a typical woman problem) so I make new things, but it has to go so fast that I don´t have/take the time to create pieces I absolutely adore.

I wanted to make clothes so I wouldn´t have to buy them anymore and I hoped it would save me some money. We all know that this is bullshit. Once you get the habit of buying fabric, you don´t stop, because you need a stash. And now that I have a stash and I know how to sew, I don´t want to buy clothes because I feel I could do it better/cheaper myself.

But when I bought clothes, the pieces were (more or less) carefully considered and I loved them more.

So how do I fix this?