3 Things I Learned from Me Made May

Me Made May 2016 came and went in a whirlwind of Instagram photos. Daily pics aren’t part of the challenge—just a happy side effect. That #mmmay16 hashtag brings so many great sewing peeps out of the woodworks! And then the last week of May hits and we all commiserate about being sick of taking portraits. Solidarity.

I’m happy to say that I managed to hit my goal of wearing at least one me-made garment each day in May. Here’s what I learned this year:

1). No one needs to know what your innards look like.

I made a linen shirtdress almost two years ago to the date. On the outside, it’s a simple, pretty floral piece that looks decent with a belt. On the inside, it’s a hot mess of unfinished raw edges. Guess what? Nobody noticed. Nobody had to say, “Excuse me, but your dress is literally falling apart at the seams.”

That dress is a reminder to harness some of the reckless abandon with which I used to attack sewing projects as a newbie. It’s also a happy reminder that I’ve actually learned a thing or two over the past couple years.

2). I’m scared to make real pants.

Me Made May exposes gaps in your handmade wardrobe. Last year I realized that the only pants I made were loungewear, and I vowed to “make more bottoms”—or something like that. The thing is, I’ve always had a hard time finding pants that fit. I’m pretty sure that the distance between my belly button and my crotch is three times longer than that of a normal person. When I find a pair of pants that fit, I wear them until they fall apart.

The thought of spending hours (months, days?!) fitting, muslining, and sewing a pair of pants is daunting. I get exhausted just thinking about it. Can anyone recommend any woven pants patterns that they really love? Or any inspirational quotes for a reluctant pants-maker? Should I just give up and continue buying my beloved Cheap Monday jeans?

3). Free patterns are some of my favorite patterns.

Mandy and Plantain tees ’til I die.

And that’s all I’ve got until next year’s challenge! Did you take part this year?

P.S. I’ve developed quite a backlog of sewing projects to share (Cardamome Dress, Negroni Shirt, Hollyburn Skirt, Bantam Top, Willow Tank), so keep an eye out!



11 thoughts on “3 Things I Learned from Me Made May

  1. I’m also scared of pants.

    I tackled a simple set of alterations with the Salme Elastic-Waist Shorts pattern. That gave me a little bit of confidence. (They also have a simple, non-elastic-waist shorts pattern, I believe.)

    But the real recommendation would be to try one of the new indie jeans patterns. Ginger or Morgan Jeans by Closet Case Files, or the Birkin Flare. I haven’t tried either, but the Gingers are on my list. Perhaps for this year, if I can stop being so scared.


    • Ohh elastic-waist shorts sound like a good one to try for this summer! And I agree about the Closet Case Files jeans… I feel like half of the sewing bloggers I follow have successfully made them! Maybe this fall 🙂


  2. Ok I am going to straight talk with you. You can absolutely make pants! I felt the same way but they wont take months to make – honestly. Make something that requires a bit of stretch like sateen or stretch denim and you will be fine. Try the Butterick B5895 – its a great pants pattern without a zip fly. You can do this 👊. I enjoyed your feed – its funny how you have too much loungewear and my analysis was that I didnt have enough. Going through your older post now to seek out ideas😁


  3. I am right there with you in the super long rise department. I know they are pretty casual, but I love the Named Alexandria trousers. They don’t do much for the butt, although they do work with woven or knits. As for the sewing part, of course you can make pants! I look forward to seeing what you come up with!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. My first pair of pants were the Colette Junipers, and I made a side zip because I was afraid of the fly. The crotch is pretty low on those (at least at my Shakira-esque bottoms size), and they’re super comfy!

    The dark side of no one caring about your guts is NO ONE CARES. : ( What if my jeans have flat-flatted seams and a pocket lining that matches my shirt? Don’t you want to KNOW?! Though since I don’t have a serger I feel better when I sew with knits. Then it’s, no one has to know.

    Betcha you can make pants if you want to! You don’t have to want to if you don’t, but if you do then you can!


  5. Casting another vote for cloning a pair of your beloved RTW jeans. If you’re happy with the fit off the rack, you’ll at least be wayyy ahead of the fitting curve if you decide to make any tweaks after the first cloned pair. If you’ve got a pair that are on their last legs (heh), sacrifice them to the great cause of Patternmaking and cut ’em up! I made jeans for my hubs this way and will do the same for myself–you can definitely do it!!


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