Saturday, July 30, 2016

Outfits 53 - 58 Summer '16

Hi guys! I'm thinking about my fall clothes a little bit, and I don't feel tempted to buy anything. What a nice feeling! I keep seeing blog posts about all the fall clothes on sale at Nordstrom, and none of them have grabbed my attention. I think I already have (or can make) everything I want to wear. Now, my list of things I'd like to sew is pretty long, so don't think I've reached total contentment. But it's really nice to feel closer to it.

My handmade clothes definitely don't feel disposable, like cheap, trendy things from Old Navy or Kohl's sometimes did. I put time and effort into making my clothes, and it's so much easier and more obvious to value them than things I just bought on a whim for such small amounts of money, made by faraway strangers. 

I still buy a lot of my kids' clothes from those cheap places (they outgrow them so quickly!). I'm sure I'll buy things for myself from fast fashion stores again, but it feels good to reduce those purchases and get more wear out of what I have. I love reducing my contribution to landfills and pollution and to an industry that sometimes mistreats and underpays its employees. 

And now for some outfits:

Floral jersey Lark, pattern from Grainline Studio
Flared jeans from Madewell
Leather sneakers from Camper

Striped rayon Willow, pattern from Grainline Studio
Linen pants, pattern from Simple Modern Sewing by Shufu To Seikatsu Sha
Leather espadrilles from Sam Edelman

Striped jersey Lark, pattern from Grainline Studio
White cropped jeans from J. Crew Factory
Oxfords from Pikolinos

Eyelet Scout tee, pattern from Grainline Studio
Cutoff jeans (similar)
Clarks sandals (similar)

Double gauze Scout tee, pattern from Grainline Studio 
Jean shorts
White Converse

Cherries Saltbox tee, pattern from Blueprints for Sewing
Denim skirt (this one's cute)
Clarks sandals (similar)

Some of the links above are affiliate links. If you click on one and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission, but your price will be the same. Thanks!

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Outfits 51 - 52 Summer '16

Hi guys! I got to have a long weekend to myself while Jason took the kids to visit his parents. Woo hoo! I love alone time, so it has been amazing. I accomplished some of the things on my list, though there are still dozens of tasks I didn't finish. It feels so great to be able to focus in on one thing without having anyone need me in the middle of it. I will try to figure out how to get more time to focus. Maybe I can set the kids up with an activity, and set a timer so they have to do the activity until the timer goes off, without asking me for anything. This could work... I will let you know after I try it!

I only have a couple outfits to share. I've been doing dirty work around the house, like painting a wall inside and trim around our new door outside, and working in the garden. So some days I've just worn old clothes and didn't document them.

Here are a couple of outfits, each with a handmade shirt. 

Saltbox tee in a cherry print, pattern from Blueprints for Sewing.

Green Penny Raglan, pattern from Grainline Studio
Grey jeans (similar)
Clarks sandals (similar)

I love the shape of this shirt. It drapes nicely but doesn't cling to the body. I used to love clingy shirts when I had a smaller waist, but right now I really like this slightly swingy shape. 

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Outfits 46 - 50 Summer '16

Hi guys! What are you up to this week? I'm planning what to do for the next few days. Jason is taking the kids to visit his parents and I get to be alone for a long weekend! Introvert dream come true :)

I plan to organize, declutter, finish projects, sleep as much as I want, paint a wall, sew some clothes and pajamas, read, and maybe just like 50 other things. I know I won't accomplish everything I'd like, so I have to prioritize. Oh, how I love these short vacations from momming. They're so rare, and so delightful. 

Here are my recent outfits, using my core wardrobe of handmade clothes and adding in whatever else I want.

Double gauze Scout tee, pattern from Grainline Studio

Striped Penny Raglan, pattern from Grainline Studio. This is my newest homemade thing, and I think it's perfect.

Addison tank, pattern from Seamwork Magazine. I love how this tank flares a little away from my body.

Eyelet Scout tee, pattern from Grainline Studio. I fancied up this pattern this time with prettier fabric. I had to line it, which I haven't done many times, so it was a little challenge with a nice result.

Flares from J. Crew Factory. I finally cut the hems off of these, and I'm so glad I did. The hems were always flipping up, even if I ironed them (yes, I ironed my jeans! I couldn't believe it, either). Now these can fray with washing and be a whole new thing.

Some of those are affiliate links, so I may get a small profit if you buy through them. Thanks!

Friday, July 15, 2016

Days 43 - 45 Summer '16

Hello! What's going on with you this summer? I'm amazed at how quickly time is passing. Only 4.5 weeks until my kids' schools start. Only 8 weeks until I turn 40!  I'm trying to stay in the moment and enjoy each day. It's easy to start worrying about the future (What if Violet doesn't like kindergarten? What if Bodhi is afraid to be dropped off at preschool?). Aside from thinking of ways to prepare them as best I can (meeting some of their classmates this summer, talking about what it might be like, etc...), worrying is just a waste of time. 

So let's move on to the fun stuff! Summer outfits that incorporate my handmade clothes:

Go Your Own Way t-shirt from Modcloth. Hope you like Fleetwood Mac!
Moss skirt, pattern by Grainline Studio

Willow tank, pattern by Grainline Studio
Clarks sandals (these are cute, too)

Tank top from Volcom, several years old
Linen pants, pattern from Simple Modern Sewing book
Chevron Vans

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Day 42 Summer '16: Striped Scout, Faded Black Jeans, Naot Sandals

Hi guys, I'm trying to start thinking about fall clothes, but I can't do it yet. It's too hot and summery! I can definitely foresee jeans and a jean jacket and maybe something orange. Oh, and stripes. Are you doing any planning yet? 

Striped rayon challis Scout tee, pattern from Grainline Studio
Faded black jeans (this pair looks cute)
Naot sandals (similar sandals)

Monday, July 11, 2016

Days 36 - 41 Summer '16

Hi guys! I've finished sewing a few things recently, so I have some new pieces to wear and share. 

Tank top, let's say inspired by the Addison from Seamwork. The original has a collar, which I left off, and a front and back facing, which I put on but then removed when it didn't lie flat. Then I changed the neckline a tiny bit and used bias binding to finish the neckline and armholes. I'll try again once I get the right kind of interfacing, and I'll probably add the collar, too.
Silver Avarca Pons sandals (here in gold)

Boden t-shirt
Linen blend shorts, Oceanside Pants and Shorts pattern from Blank Slate Patterns. I want to make some cropped pants with this pattern, too. 
Naot sandals (similar)

 Double gauze Willow tank dress from Grainline Studio
Naot sandals (these are cute, too)

A new boatneck jersey Lark shirt, pattern from Grainline Studio
Flared jeans from Madewell
Naot sandals (these are cute and strappy)

Floral Lark t-shirt, pattern from Grainline Studio
Black jeans from Madewell
Avarca Pons sandals (here in red)

Penny raglan top, pattern from Grainline Studio
Black jeans from Madewell
Chevron Vans

I feel like my closet needs a good cleaning again. I'll be trying to get that done before fall, so I can easily get to my cool-weather clothes and see if there are any holes I want to fill by sewing or shopping. 

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Days 33 - 35 Summer '16

Hi guys! I made it through the 4th of July (my late father's birthday). It wasn't as heart-wrenching as I expected. Phew! 

Now my family is trying to plan a couple trips and realizing how little is left of summer! Live it up, friends. Today we played outside (I did some watercolor painting while the kids rode bikes and played with the neighbors), worked in the garden (collecting compost, planting some last potatoes, and watering my potted plants), went to the pool, and grilled burgers. That's a pretty good summer day, by my standards. Did you do anything fun?

Here are my latest outfits, still going strong with my homemade wardrobe:

Floral jersey Lark tee, pattern from Grainline Studio
Cut-off jeans (similar)
Silver Avarca Pons sandals (here in gold)

This outfit seems great for fall; I will have to remember it in a few months. The black shoes are what really makes it feel autumnal to me. 
Double gauze Scout tee, pattern from Grainline Studio

Rayon Scout tee, pattern from Grainline Studio
Denim skirt from Boden (similar)
Naot sandals (similar)

(some of those links are affiliate links. If you buy something, I may receive a small commission on the sale, but your price would be the same.)

I hope you're living it up this summer! I'm trying to resist my inclination to spend a lot of time inside. I'm a homebody, but I think it's really good for the kids and me to spend as much time outside as possible. Sunshine, fresh air, vitamin D, exercise, adventures, nature -- all that good stuff is right outside the door!

Saturday, July 2, 2016

Days 26 - 32 Summer '16 and How to Make Life Easier

Hi guys! Summer keeps cruising along. It feels so short, now that my daughter's going to start kindergarten in the fall. She will be at school five days a week, so we won't have as much free time to do whatever we want. All the previous summers since she was born seemed almost endless. 

I'm glad it's almost the 4th of July, since I'm ready to get it over with. That was my dad's birthday. He died in March and I have been really missing him. Father's Day was rough and now his birthday will be, too. Once it's over, maybe the loss won't feel so sharp and I can think more about other things. 

As always, when life is extra complicated or busy, it's a relief to have some areas of life that are easy. Capsule wardrobes, simple menu plans, and routines can make life feel so much easier. You don't have to make as many decisions since you already made them in the planning stage; then you get to rely on that same decision over and over again and save your brain power for something else.

* A capsule wardrobe is just a smaller set of clothing that you love and want to wear all the time. The clothes are seasonally appropriate, they all fit well, and they have a lot of mix-and-match potential. Keep these in the front of your closet so you can reach for them often, rather than sorting through all your clothes every day, or trying on a lot of outfits to find one that fits and looks good. 

* Planning meals a week or a month at a time will save you from having to decide what to make every day. You can also plan your shopping lists ahead of time, so you can just shop once a week and avoid last minute trips to the store. You can make it even easier by eating pretty much the same thing every week! For example:
Monday: roast beef, cooked in a slow cooker. 
Tuesday: use leftovers for french dip sandwiches. 
Wednesday: tacos. 
Thursday: soup and salad.
Friday: pizza, of course.
Saturday: eat at a restaurant.
Sunday: spaghetti.

Then change it up if you feel motivated to, but you can always fall back on your plan if you don't want to make new decisions. By the way, I'm not doing this right now, and I really want to! I needed to find the initial energy to get started, but now I'm halfway there. I already typed out that menu, so I just need to make a shopping list and follow through.

Routines can make it automatic to take care of household chores, so you only have to decide once when you'll do everything. List your chores and then you can divide them up for the week, in a way that makes sense for you.
Monday: vacuum and dust first floor.
Tuesday: vacuum and dust upstairs.
Wednesday: no chores.
Thursday: empty all trash and take it out to the curb.
Friday: change sheets. 
Saturday: start laundry, clean bathrooms.
Sunday: shopping and food prep, water plants, finish laundry.
And every day straighten up a bit and keep the kitchen clean.
Then hopefully you'll never get stuck starting one task and then getting distracted by another one (this can happen to me so easily!). Just do what's on the schedule for that day.

And finally, here are my recent outfits:

Newly-sewn Penny Raglan tee from Grainline Studio
Linen skirt from Old Navy (similar)
Silver Avarca Pons sandals

Photo bomb!
Orange-red Boden t-shirt (here in stripes)
Me-made linen pants
Blue Pikolinos slip-on oxfords (here in white)

This day, I didn't wear anything handmade. Sometimes it's nice to wear something different, so I chose this chambray tent dress from American Apparel.
Naot sandals (similar)

Striped jersey t-shirt; Lark pattern from Grainline Studio
Naot sandals (similar)

Cloudy tee; Scout pattern from Grainline Studio
Cut-off jeans (similar)

Striped rayon challis tank; Willow pattern from Grainline Studio
Me-made linen pants

Feline photo bomb!
Penny Raglan; pattern from Grainline Studio
Flared jeans from J. Crew Factory (similar)

Have a good weekend and I'll be back soon.