Hmmm do I count all the things I have acquired since being paid on the 27th?? Honestly you would think that I had a lot more money than I do. I was one of those mildly mad people who were waiting in an online queue for the Irregular Choice Star Wars 2nd release of shoes, I got some and I will show them next month.
I only got one item of clothing during May and that was using the remaining money on the gift card that my sister kindly got me for my birthday in January. I was sensible and realised how often I was reaching for my trusty Braintree black leggings so bought another pair. I knew that these fitted perfectly in a size 12 and are lovely soft bamboo material, maybe in the future I may try to make my own leggings but that is further down the line. I also really like buying basics from somewhere like Braintree as many of their dresses and tops are not very my style, lovely as they are. They also have great underwear, tights and socks – I will be buying another pair of tights for winter I reckon, my chevron ones served me very well last winter and were super cosy.
I also bought a dress from the lovely vintage inspired brand Tara Starlet, everything they sell is made in the UK which is great. I bought the petrol blue Peggy dress and the construction and fabric were lovely. Unfortunately a few too many cakes and my lack of exercise due to this ‘itis’ that is still hanging about has meant that I am a bit bigger than usual and so my normal size didn’t fit. I toyed with the idea of buying a size up as this was meant to be for a friends’ wedding but really I know that I will lose this extra weight. In fact currently I am cutting back on my cake and crisps in an attempt to help this while I can’t burn off my calories. So I returned it, I would definitely order from Tara Starlet again and currently everything in their sale section is under £20.
Finally I also bought a few things for the sewing machine, namely a walking foot, ball point needles and a twin needle. I have been using these in my sewing class to sew with jersey on my ‘normal’ machine, I did pay a fair bit for my walking foot which I know I could have got a cheaper version on eBay but I really want to sew more with jersey so thought I would just go for it. After I bought these pieces, I was able to sew bits and pieces of my dress at home which helped me spend longer on the trickier parts in class. I will do a full post on my finished dress but I have to say I am pretty pleased and getting more chuffed with it as the days go on.
So May seems like it was a frugal month however I ended up skint by the end so if someone can explain what the heck I was up to I would be pleased 🙂 June has already seen me ordering some clothes like a loony but hopefully I have found some jeans! Oh and some “essential” shoes – silver glitter, Hans Solo on the sole and a droid on the toe. Definitely essential 😉
I mentioned in March that I was no longer doing the clothing ban challenge. I have continued to be part of the group on Facebook as they share interesting articles and are a friendly bunch. I have tried to cull my wardrobe and have put away a load of clothing under the bed so my wardrobe is much smaller and is worn constantly. Technically I *might* be doing a capsule wardrobe but it doesn’t feel that way yet as I am still working out what pieces of clothing need to be in my wardrobe. For example at the moment I do not like any of the pairs of jeans I have, I have 3 pairs – 1 skinny pair which tore at the crotch and were really unflattering but I could tuck them into my boots and I like stomping around like that, 1 longer length bootcut pair which are fine but I don’t like with trainers and rarely wear heels except at work – on the plus side these are Howies jeans and therefore are great quality, brilliant except when you don’t really like them 🙂 and finally 1 pair of baggier jeans which make me feel like I am back at Uni, when I studied not you know where I work. However, I have gained a fair amount of weight recently and until I have that under control it seems pointless to shop for any clothing let alone jeans. So on that note… Continue reading “April’s Acquisitions”
I follow the blogs of Mel Wiggins and The Owl and the Accordion written by Victoria, both are great blogs and have interesting, thoughtful pieces along with show casing various ethical brands and top tips for eBay shopping. Last week I read about an idea that they had come up with together (don’t you love it when you find out your favourite bloggers are friends!), the Ethical Fashion Collective and it immediately intrigued me. Basically it is an idea to save some space online to show off and share information about ethical fashion – this includes vintage/second hand/articles/small brands/big brands – you name it! The idea is to do this on the 1st Friday of each month, and I love it! While I have my own reservations about the phrase ‘ethical fashion’ and prefer ‘ethical style’ I see no need to prescribe that to others and I’m excited to join in. Continue reading “Joining the Ethical Fashion Collective”
After a couple of years of resolving to post outfit pictures I finally manage to post some. These pictures were taken while we were on holiday last week. We started the week with blue skies in Glencoe and ended the week on the Isle of Mull with grey skies and a chill in the air. Chop dealt with the ferry and staying in the motorhome really well, he barked at the clear, starlit, inky black sky in Glencoe – it looks like he is a true city dog now. Leith has changed him 🙂 We did lots of walking but no skiing for me as I’m still unable to run or cycle due to this lingering virus (3 months and counting).
This outfit is typical for me at the moment and I feel really comfortable and like myself in it. I have chosen to end my participation in ‘no new clothes for a year’ challenge. I started in September and slipped up three times before stopping fully in early March. I had my own reasons for joining the challenge as I already know a lot about the clothing industry and luckily I can choose where to shop and can avoid fast fashion brands choosing to shop 2nd hand first and with brands whose ethics I agree with. I also still like to support local companies and my love of Finisterre shows no signs of abating!
Jacket – Finisterre, Jumper – 2nd hand WhiteStuff, jeans – 2nd hand Next, boots – Dublin River boots (these are actually my horse riding boots), scarf – gift from my sister, bag – Boden
I found the challenge was making me miserable. Many of my clothes didn’t feel like me. I felt uncomfortable in them and just wanted to have a clear out. My taste outstrips my sewing skills and ability, I don’t want to end up getting frustrated and giving up sewing when I can’t make the things I would like. This made me revise my idea that I could make what I needed to fill any gaps in my wardrobe! My black trousers were wearing out, the jeans I have I don’t particularly like and many pieces simply don’t fit in with my lifestyle.
I also discovered through the Facebook group that most other people on the challenge were really enjoying it, I found myself constantly window shopping and I felt like a failure. That was until I chatted with Katie from Sustainability in Style the original creator of this challenge. She told me to go back and look at my original reasons for doing the challenge – had I achieved them? Do you know what I feel I have, I have definitely worked out my style. These outfits are my casual go to style. Now I accept that I want to replace the jeans as they aren’t the best but that can wait – I’m now working on stopping the cycle of payday spending but without any new challenges instead just step by step. First up a big clear out is taking place, not only in my wardrobe but in the whole flat – don’t worry the puppy stays though.
Fancy an interesting online read? I would recommend Katie’s post on Freetown Fashpack, enjoy the awesome style on show in that post 🙂
If you follow me on Instagram you will have seen that for my birthday I received a sewing machine! I decided to get a Janome CXL301, which is a computerised one – part of me still hankers after an old fashioned basic one, in fact a treadle one would be brilliant but let’s be realistic something that helps me sew button holes is always going to be helpful. It is also the machine I used at my dressmaking class I took B.C. (you know, before Chop 🙂 ), I loved the fact that it has an adjustable speed for the foot pedal and the set up of it was a breeze. Of course the fact I had the lovely Rachel to advise probably helped there. Continue reading “My Vintage Sewing Pledge 2016”
At the start of September I committed to ‘No New Clothes for a Year’. This challenge initially came on my radar because of Katie Roberts’ lovely blog Sustainability in Style. I followed her year long challenge with interest, of course it helps that she takes lovely photos and writes about everything with passion and clarity. A wee thought took hold for me ‘could I do this?’. I pushed it aside while saying to myself ‘maybe after I get that work top…or that coat…or those new jodhpurs’. I had reduced my consumption hugely, I know the ethics of everything I buy and try to buy #secondhandfirst when I can. However, I have enough clothing but I still buy more – I want to save more money and pay off my debts. I want to have a wardrobe that exists for me and fits into my life. I also hope to focus more on learning how to implement more eco principles in other areas of my life. Continue reading “It’s New Challenge Time!”
A week or so ago I decided to head along to a sewing meetup. The website meetup is how the cycle group Belles on Bikes organise their rides and I had decided to see if there were any sewing or craft groups that could help me try to get making part of my normal routine. I have joined two and one group constantly puts up classes held in the organisers flat designed to get people making things and actually complete a project in a few hours. Now all the sewing I have done so far has been with my mum, which I love but unfortunately I only catch up with my folks every few weeks and not every occasion is a sewing one. My thoughts are to do a dressmaking course but I thought a couple of these meetup sessions could be a good way to dip my toes in the water.
It was a fun and relaxed evening. I made a simple drawstring bag. I found the different sewing machine a little tricky and I have a tendency to hold the fabric really tight – which oddly enough isn’t a problem, or at least something I had noticed when sewing previously. I enjoyed using the zigzag stitching as decoration on the patch on the front, something simple but different for me.
The stitching isn’t perfect by a long shot but it is the first thing I have made by my own hand plus it has confirmed to me I would like to sew more regularly – I’m going to sign up for an autumn dressmaking course in the evenings.
I am also currently attempting to make a sewing bloggers favourite – the Scout tshirt. It is a pretty basic pattern and I have so far traced the pattern, cut out the pattern pieces and cut out everything in the cute sailing themed cotton I have. It is going okay although my cutting out of the fabric leaves a bit to be desired and my mum has suggested it is because I didn’t use a hard surface to cut out. I think I might prefer a more fitted tshirt in the end (do other sewers look at the pattern pieces they have cut out and think they are huugggeee?) but I am really waiting to sew it up and then work out if I want to put in darts or something. And to be fair since I managed to get paint all over my favourite boxy tshirt when painting the living room I could really do with a new version 🙂
On that – hmm will I like this item note I have also started working my way through the Colette Wardrobe Architect worksheets – this is with a view to making or indeed buying clothes that fit my personal style and to hopefully not end up with more skirts like the Delphine one I made. That skirt was very pretty but definitely not for me. My mate liked it though and that was a great feeling to give someone something I had made.