Love What You Wear Update: Thank Goodness for Oxfam

In November I signed up for the Love What You Wear Project, the aim of which is to avoid buying new clothes for a year. So, just over three months later, how am I doing?

sad about polka dot top

The good news is, I finished sewing a garment. Properly, with seam finishing and a hem and everything. The bad news is, I don’t like it. The only time I can imagine wearing it would be if I was pregnant. Mum – if you’re reading this – don’t start knitting booties, I have no intention of getting pregnant ;-). It is not flattering at all. And I have come to the conclusion that threading elastic through casing is the most tedious sewing task in the world, and this little beauty has four lots (two sleeves, a waist and a neckline). So I think it’s fair to chalk up McCalls M5050 as a fail. Ho hum.

On the plus side, I have managed to grab myself a couple of charity shop bargains in the last couple of weeks. A beautiful lightweight cotton Monsoon blouse, and a super-comfy-but-with-nice-finishing-touches green top by Boden.

thank goodness for oxfam monsoon
thank goodness for oxfam boden

And I am *NOT* going to give up on dressmaking (though I may take a little break to get on with some other sewing stuff, which I’ll post about soon). This week I have aquired two more sewing patterns. The Vogue one I won from Jenny over at Pattern Pandemonium. I must admit I was drawn to the polka dots ๐Ÿ™‚ and the McCalls skirt I bagged for 99p from Oxfam. So I have to decide whether to do one of these next, or to make a start on the Deer & Doe. Decisions, decisions.

two patterns

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27 thoughts on “Love What You Wear Update: Thank Goodness for Oxfam

  1. Motherfunker says:

    You could always sell this on etsy…..

  2. Thinking the top with the green spots is too long for you and might be better shorter? Great buys on the oxfam front!

  3. Oh dear, you are looking thoroughly fed up in that green top. It is sad when you don’t like something you’ve put a lot of effort into. Onwards and upwards! That Deer and Doe pattern is gorgeous. I’d not come across them before so thanks for sharing :o) Great charity shop finds, I like both of them x

    • vivjm says:

      Well, I’m trying to stay positive and consider that for every project, whether a hit or miss, I have learned some new techniques, as well as a better understanding of what may or may not suit me.

  4. Gjeometry says:

    Aw, I think the green top is really cute! I like the little poufy sleeves. But, yes, you could shorten in like Morwhenna Woolcock mentions and you might like the way it fits better. OR, you could add on a “skirt” piece (just cut it to the same width as the bottom of the top and sew it on) and it will become a very stylish nightgown!

  5. Janet says:

    You definitely don’t look too happy wearing your green top! But at least you can say you did it start to finish. It’s an accomplishment. I like the patterns you found…especially the skirt pattern.

  6. I love the fabric, and I agree with the other commenters that it might look better a bit shorter. Otherwise maybe you could refashion it into something else, like a skirt maybe? Or sell it on easy. ๐Ÿ˜‰ Congratulations on finishing it though. That’s something to be proud of!

  7. Why not make a simple shift dress next! It’ll be a classic and you can wear it over and over again throughout the year!

  8. debbieyare says:

    Great idea for a project. Bargain hunting in charity shops is always good fun. It is amazing what you can find. I love the expressive photo ๐Ÿ™‚ but it is a shame you don’t like your hand made. My mum sews and knits and I always find the pictures on the patterns to be a little misleading….I think she uses ebay to find patterns these days, and always manages to pick up a bargain.

    • vivjm says:

      I think you could be right about the pictures on the pattern packets. Some patterns I’ve looked at and would never give another glance to, thinking they looked like nothing special, but then I see someone’s blog who has made them and they look amazing! And other times, the pics on the packets look great, but then the garment is a bit meh.
      I guess it will take time and trial & error to get to know what works.

  9. spidergran says:

    Beautifully made but no good if you don’t like it. It would be transformed if you put another elastic gathering at the waist showing your neat figure to advantage and it would look nothing like a maternity top then. It obviously fits perfectly across the shoulders and top so an extra elastic gathering would also make it shorter as your other followers advised. Why not give it a go before you put it into the wardrobe for posterity?

  10. Well at least you got to finish your project ! I had to give up mine. I’m a complete beginner and got cheated by a vendor who sold me 1) a pattern too small for my size 2) a cloth unsuitable for the pattern !

  11. painterswife says:

    I love that skirt pattern – what a good find!

  12. Ben Naga says:

    Not buying any new clothes for a year is a snap for me as I have a pile of stuff stock-piled already. Plus I so rarely see anything I like in a shop. (Not to mention the preposterous price tags.)

    • vivjm says:

      I must admit I’m not finding it terribly difficult, as I have enough clothes & hate clothes shopping anyway. And yes, I cringe at the prices!

      • I feel a bit of a fraud on the LWYW project! I am not finding it in the least bit difficult to abstain from clothes shopping and have yet to make anything new! Ah well, perhaps if there’s a threat of sunshine, I might have to get the sewing machine out.

      • vivjm says:

        I know what you mean, Fiona. I guess I never really bought new clothes much anyhow! Perhaps I should commit to give up something that I actually *do* buy too much of like *gasp* books!

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