Steely Seamstress

Sewing for life

MMM15 – The year of the Skirt?

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MMM 15 has drawn to a close and actually I’m quite sad about that. This year was more hassle-free; I stopped the daily picture-taking and just recorded my outfits instead. This made MMM far less demanding, although in a way it will probably make a far less pleasing post as I’ve only taken a handle of “favourite outfit” photographs.

Anyway, I’ve done a few statistics on my outfits over the last few weeks. First of all, here is my run-down by clothing type:

Type of garment No of Wears No of items
Short-sleeved tops 5 2
Longer-sleeved tops 15 3
Skirt 5 2
Trousers 8 2
Dress 2 1



As you can see, the longer-sleeved tops won and this is surely just a reflection of the weather. I’m also rather pleased with the amount of skirt and dress wearing I’ve been doing. I tended to avoid wearing skirts before I started making my own. I found them an unsatisfying shop. Skirts only require two measurements to fit really, but as my waist and hips are fairly similar (I’m not curvy at all), I found I avoided skirts in shops as they generally didn’t fit. I’m happy I’ve given myself already a wider wardrobe choice and have truly embraced skirts this year. OK, so as a percentage of the total items worn they are featured at only 17%. But hey, before I started making my own clothes that percentage would probably have been 0%.

There is one very obvious thing that leaps out of the statistics and that is that I do not own a single me-made cardigan. What is more, my cardigans are all horrible. I have a very faded black cardigan, a nasty green cardigan that is suffering badly from pilling and a brown cardigan with a hole in it. With the exception of the brown cardigan which I could easily mend, my cardigan collection is very lacking. The black cardigan, I love, but it is very old and needs replacing and the green cardigan was a poor purchase, it contains polyester and pills badly. Now I have the overlocker, I really must tackle some cardigan making.

Lucinda Shirt and Vogue grey trousers

The other stalwart item from the RTWs are jeans. I wore them no less than 16 times in the last month. Actually, I am currently making some skinny jeans / trousers at the moment. I’ll post about them next month when they’re finished. I had already recognised that this is an area I needed to address, particularly as two of my pairs of jeans are very threadbare and I feel that it won’t be long before I have some nasty revealing accident as the fabric finally gives way.

There have been two factors contributing to some items from the me-made wardrobe not being worn. First of all, the weather has not been particularly warm. Apart from one day in the last month I have been in long-sleeves all day, sometimes with two long-sleeved layers. I have also been wearing tights with all my skirts. Hence, I had hardly worn my Sorbetto tops, with only the purple one getting a brief outing.


This month, I also haven’t had any meetings with clients, so the more formal skirts didn’t get an outing either. However, I did wear the True Blue skirt a lot last month as I had a lot of client visits.

All in all, I didn’t think initially I had much to learn from recording all this data. I definitely knew about the most obvious things such as my jean-wearing habit and my disreputable cardigans.  But there have been some other statistics that have been useful to note. I’ve noticed that I have a much smaller colour palette than I used to. I think when I’m purchasing fabric I can more easily bear in mind what garments I already have will accompany the item I’ll make with the new fabric. Consequently, I’ve bought more neutrals – greys, blacks and browns have been featuring throughout the month.

Colour Me-made tops RTW tops Me-made bottoms RTW bottoms Me-made cardigans / hoodies RTW cardigans / hoodies
Black 9 3 3 0 0 14
Grey 0 0 5 0 0 4
Red 5 0 0 0 0 0
Blue 0 2 0 16 0 2
Orange 0 2 5 0 0 0
Brown 5 0 0 0 0 5
Purple 1 0 0 0 0 0
White 0 2 0 0 0 0
Green 0 0 0 0 0 6
Total 20* 9 13* 16 0 31

*Not shown in table above – Teal dress worn for two days

I’ve also noticed that I haven’t actually used many patterns from my growing collection and with the exception of the Lucinda shirt and the Sorbetto top I haven’t really made more than one item with the same pattern. I think I’m missing something here. I read often enough how much fit can improve with multiple takes. I would also imagine it would be easier to make the garment as you’ve already practiced the techniques involved. Anyway, I should really curb my habit of buying new patterns for each make and re-visit some favourites. Well, may be after Indie Pattern month!

Pattern Company No of wears Item Name
Butterick 5 3/4 sleecved paisley top
McCalls 2 Teal wrap dress
Vogue 3 Grey trousers
Burda 5 Long-sleeve bicycle shirt
Be My Goth 9 Long-sleeved red shirt / short sleeved black shirt
Self-drafted 7 Black / white Viale skirt / Orange corduroy trousers
Grainline 2 Grey Moss Skirt
Colette 1 Purple-patterned Sorbetto top
Total 34


Hope you all enjoyed MMM as much as I did. I can strongly recommend ditching the daily photos and just doing some statistics. After all, in So Zo’s words this challenge is to “may also be useful for discovering the ‘holes’ in your wardrobe so in the future you are able to focus your precious garment-creating time towards making things that will be useful” And of course, that can easily be accomplished without the need for selfies!

Author: steelyseamstress

Sewing a new wardrobe

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