MMM ’15 – Sign Up

Prepare to be bored out of your brains again, it’s Me-Made-May Time!! I’ve done it before and I will do it again.

For those of you who do not know what MMM is, this post explains it all. You make a pledge to wear items of clothing, accessories or ‘other’ for a specified number of days in the month of May. My pledge is below:

MMM 15

The reason you will be bored is because I’m also planning on documenting all outfits every day. So you’ll be getting me in clothes in round-up posts for an entire month. I’m already sorry.. almost.

I participate in MMM for two reasons, one, it teaches me even more about what I do and don’t wear and why and two, I should challenge my sartorial choices more as I seem to live in jeans and a sweater, with the fur animal hoody over the top.

Wish me luck!

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Colours!

This will be a double feature involving two projects with a lot of colour! Let us start with the obligatory Easter eggs. As you may know, I have this ‘tradition’  of painting hard-boiled eggs for Easter, proof can be found here, here and here.

This year was a little different though. I was not at my parents house for Easter and I therefore couldn’t force my mum to hide eggs in the yard. I was also alone and would not be able (or willing) to eat an enormous amount of eggs to facility my painting habits. Moreover, I didn’t have time (or energy) on the Saturday to paint my eggs. So Sunday morning, when I woke up, I put my laundry in the machine and boiled two eggs. I let them cool in a pan with cold water and after 15 minutes or so, I took them out to paint.

What to paint on my two glorious eggs. I googled a bit and decided on the classics, polka dots and stripes. I used my (new-ish) watercolour paints and dotted the first egg with some nice colours. The second egg was made with different colour stripes. Tadaaa!

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I also ate them approximately 3 minutes after taking the picture.. Egg salad on pita bread (empty cupboard and shops closed for Easter), it was nice though!

—- Part 2! —-

The second project was based on a suggestion by my mother. She said that I should make a poppy (more information here and here) from my left over pyjama fabric. So I did. As the fabric is so differently coloured, the poppy is red on the from and blue on the back. I chose to make the little hat in green/yellow. I like it.

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Here it is sitting up.

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So these were my two colourful projects. I liked them, and I hope to keep the eggs tradition alive. Someone needs to paint for the Easter bunny, right?!

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Woolly Necklace

No, not a woolly jumper yet, although I’m getting there. I am slowly finishing up a green sweater with a side front closure and weird collar. However, in the mean time, I made a few necklaces. I have a colleague who owns a necklace made of a lot of rolled fabric strips in coordinating colours, all in hues of blue. I really liked that idea and when I found some interesting yarn on sale, I figured I’d try to recreate that necklace. This was the yarn and the first part of the necklace.

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I wanted to figure out a way to make the necklace without using any knots in the yarn. So I looked through my stash of jewellery equipment and found some bits that have a hole in the top and fold over to grip whatever you put in. I had about 20 of them. I made the first necklace, the red one and didn’t have enough bits to make another one. So I looked through all the shops I could think of to find bits to make more necklaces. Couldn’t find any, and I didn’t know what those things were called, so ordering them was difficult at first. Using some interesting methods I eventually found out that I was looking for “Fold Over Cord Crimp Beads”, and I got 3 packets of 150 bits in 3 colours.

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To make the necklaces, I put the yarn in the bits, fold over the sides and cut of the yarn that comes out the top. I do this for 8 or so strands and then I string them on a jump ring. Another jump ring is added and the other ends are strung on another jump ring, then the second jump ring with closure are added. This produced, in my opinion, a nice finish. You can also first braid part of the strings or add a metal chain or two. I personally really like the mixed media approach.

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I have made three so far. Of which I only took pictures of two. I sent the third one to a friend, I hope she likes it.

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This one has 5 red stands, one black and a doubled chain, the bits are silver coloured. This one was the first attempt and I really like it. The second one, below, used all the colours, two strands of each, one chain and old copper bits. I twisted this one a bit before I put it on. Which is an alternative method of wearing it.

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So this was my new project. I like it and I have still quite a lot of the yarn left over. This means that I can experiment and make all kinds of things, using this approach. Maybe even add large beads or knot, braid or twist strands. The options are endless!

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Laundry with Peru on the Mind

I have this wonderful friend, who seems to be the complete opposite of me in some ways. She loves to travel (I hate it), experience new cultures (center to corner of The Netherlands is a culture shock to me), eat local food (leave the guinea pigs to her) and live and work abroad. I still love her to bits and she’s absolutely wonderful to be around. However, she’s been in Peru for the past few years, luckily she comes home for Christmas every year. That’s always the time that we meet up, since I’m not yet over my fear of going to places where guinea pig is an acceptable food stuff. Nicest of all, the first year she came back, I got this present!

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It was about a meter of beautifully coloured Peruvian fabric, super bright and striped. Now, I didn’t really see an opportunity for this fabric as a wearable garment in my day-to-day life. However, last week, I realised that it would be perfect for that other thing I had been craving for a while. That was a clothespins bag. Up to now, my clothespins have been hanging out in an ugly green plastic bag. Time for an upgrade I thought.

I’d found the pattern for a retro bag or oval bag via pinterest, original was here. I printed the fabric and found it was much to big to serve my purposes, so I free-handed my own version based on the original. I did pockets on both front and back, because I thought that would be cool. For the contrast I used the same fabric as yesterdays pants, but with added interfacing.

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I learned that you should sew curved seams the same direction as it is horribly asymmetric. I will no either start at the top or the bottom, but not go in a continuous curve, as this stretches out the one half while the other half doesn’t stretch. Since this is a bag with a definite use, and it’s not very noticeable, I didn’t try to correct for that after the fact. Also the Peruvian fabric frayed like nobody’s business, so I had more interest in keeping my sanity than getting it perfect.

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I added a pipe cleaner along the top edge, since that helps to keep it open. It also provides a nice furry edge, which I thought was an added touch. Last but not least I used the handle from an old discarded sports bag, which means that it is adjustable and very sturdy. All pockets are functional and I took it out on its first assignment today and it did the job better than its plastic counterpart. I’m happy! Now on to find a use for the remainder of my Peruvian goodness.

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Entire Bedtime Jester Suit

When one finishes a Night Clown Jacket, they also need Evening Harlequin Pants to complete the Bedtime Jester Suit (BJS). That is exactly what I did last night. After work, I decided that it was high time to complete the BJS. I used the same pattern that I’ve used for all my other pairs of pyjamas (Burdastyle 7-2010, pattern 132). I did have to trace a little bit from the original pattern as I’ve managed to lose a pattern piece in its entirety.

I wanted to have the front be the same colour in the middle, probably just because I thought it would look nice. I actually managed to cut it out according to plan and I have half a meter left over, so I’m really quite happy with that. It could be enough to make something fun like a colourful poppy or so.

These are the pants. No real surprises there I guess. Construction was done on the serger for leg and crotch seams. I used the regular sewing machine for the top bit, that folds over to encase some elastic.

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The length keeps me warm, even if it looks like I’ve got bow legs, which I don’t, but I’m actually very happy with how that turned out. Apparently this fabric creases like no one’s business, but it is for in bed, so who cares. I would also like to present the completed Bedtime Jester Suit for all of you to peruse.

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I like the fact that the top and bottom do not match. I think it would look weird if they did. I could always wear the pants the wrong way round and see if that would indeed look odd, but for now, I’ll leave it as is. I did already sleep in it, and apart from having to open the button when removing the top, it’s fantastic. I might decide to never do up the top button, but we’ll have to wait and see.

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Night Clown

I have just finished the most colourful object I have ever created. It makes me look like a clown and it will serve as pyjamas. This also means that I now have part of a permanent carnaval costume that is multifunctional!

The story goes as follows: At some point in time, I figured out that pyjamas without standing collars leave your neck cold. I made the owl pyjamas without collar and while they are wonderful, that bit of me stays cold. So I wanted to get some more 1 euro/meter flannel-esque fabric with some fancy pattern on it, like the owls from before.

So one morning, I woke up my father and convinced him that he wanted to go with me to the fabric market. We had a fun morning out and I found the most wonderful flannel I’ve ever seen. It’s striped with the following extremely bright colours: yellow, orange, green, blue, red and purple. It had to become pyjamas!

I just bought 18 second hand pattern magazines in a shop around here (for 20 cents a piece), and thus had enough choice for a fresh pyjama top pattern. I chose a pattern from the 7-2010 issue of Burda Style, nr 122, a three quarter length sleeve blouse with attached sleeves.

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I started a few days ago and it actually went really fast to trace and assemble. I did add some additional length to the sleeves because I believe three quarter length sleeves are evil. They leave the wrists cold. I finished all the insides with serging so it’s really nice on the insides too.

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I did think about the collar, but I accidentally put it in the wrong way round, I wanted the yellow/green side to show. However, it’s usually the red side now. I also chose to do different coloured buttons. Mainly because I couldn’t find enough fancy coloured ones in my stash.

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And this is the completed thing.

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On to the pants! I’m going to be a full clown at night!

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Chicken in a Stick Bush

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What do you do when a friend asks you over for a craft night (admittedly a while ago)?

Well, of course you decide to make a new chicken out of the bits of quilting fabric you bought when going quilt shopping with said friend and another friend. Then you decide to stuff your fresh new chicken in the vase of sticks you have in the corner of your room. No? Is that not the usual course of action? A well, it was my plan and I executed it. The chicken hasn’t fallen out of his bush yet, and it’s been in there for weeks…

I made a similar chicken as I did here, but I made all the bits twice as big, which means the complete chicken is quite a bit bigger. I used a few of the fabrics I bought in the quilt haul, and sorted them by dark and light.

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I mirrored the bits when sewing together to make sure that he was identical on both sides. You can see, among others the ivy, the winter leaves, the zebra, the blue leaves, the red sticks, the green/yellow abstract, the leopard and the brids&christmas fabrics. The bottom is the red pears with butterflies, of which I managed to put one butterfly nicely on its butt.

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I got the yellow buttons during another crafting day with those girls and I eventually finished it, didn’t know what to do with it and therefore stuck it between the sticks I keep in a vase. I like it.

Current projects involve pinstriped shorts, green knit sweater, bed quilt and an assortment of others. I hope to have something finished soon, but you never know with me…
Let’s just all stay creative, in which ever way we choose.

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