Week 2 of MMMayPlus2020

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Left, Willandra Pants with a RTW sweater and McLean & Co scarf, Right a Torrens Box Top and pleated wool Glebe Pants

I think my main takeaway from week 2 of Me Made May is how much my indecision about shoes slows down getting dressed in the morning. Since I’ve been working from home, I haven’t fundamentally changed the things I wear but not having to choose shoes that are the right fit for my day ahead removes a huge burden!

MMMay

A couple of days this week I felt that I didn’t even have the time to head outside my front door and snap some pictures (usually takes me about a minute if that’s an indication of how slammed for time I felt), so I took some even quicker snaps in my cane chair (which I sit cross-legged in as my work-from-home desk)!

MMMay
Left, Nullabor Cami and Glebe Pants (in rayon and tencel respectively) and right is the Waikerie Shirt with Glebe Pants, both in linen.

A couple of days this week, I wore some forthcoming Muna and Broad patterns that I’ve been sewing up over the weekends and evenings in order to ‘wear test’. The Nullabor Cami is a forthcoming pattern which uses 1 metre of fabric for most sizes! There’s also an option for a bias cut dress, which uses 2 metres of 150cm fabric at my size (which i’m thrilled about)! The shirt is one of the view available in our forthcoming Waikerie Shirt pattern- I love that I’m slowly building a collection of patterns in my stash that I can use to make the relaxed natural fibre clothes that I wanted so desperately to buy but which weren’t available in my size.

I’m not sure if May will see me return to the office- this could create some logistical concerns for my outfits, both in terms of my no-outfit-repeat pledge, and my indecision with shoes!

Online Fabric Shops in New Zealand

Here’s a little roundup of NZ fabric stores where you can shop online to buy fabrics appropriate for garment sewing! I’m always trying to buy as locally as possible, and shipping from overseas can be agonising (both in terms of wait time and cost), so shopping close to home (and in your own currency) is a great alternative.

I’ve made my favourite shops bold! These are shops that I’ve shopped with and would wholeheartedly recommend!

Updated: 14/5/2020

Ackroyd & Adams (based in Auckland)

They have a selection of different fabrics including merino and cotton knits, denim, cottons and linens

AS Fabrics (based in NZ)

They have a small selection of fabrics (lot of polyester) which are leftovers from Annah Stretton’s factory. They actually charge more for postage the more fabric you order.

Backstreet Bargains (based in Hamilton)

They have a variety of fabrics at very decent prices. They have a system on their website for requesting samples, which you pay for, but I’ve also had luck getting free samples by emailing the store (either way, the samples are very small)

Charming Juno Fabrics (based in NZ)

They have a small selection of garment appropriate fabrics including Robert Kaufman chambray and velveteen, a few printed knit fabrics.

Drapers Fabrics (based in Auckland)

They have a decent selection of what I would describe as trend forward. Samples are available for $1 and shipping is free in NZ for orders over $75

Fabric Fixation (based in NZ)

They have a small selection of garment fabrics, and a lot of quilting fabrics. Their garment fabrics include cotton blend knit, corduroy, fleece and canvas

The Fabric Store (based in Auckland)

They have a selection of consistent colours across their linen, heavyweight linen and merino fabric offerings. In addition to selling designer short ends, they also stock a lot of silk, cotton and corduroy fabrics from Liberty Fabrics in the UK.

Florence & Mary (based in NZ)

They have NZ’s largest selection of Liberty Tana Lawn fabrics (15 pages of the stuff, to be precise)

For Fabrics Sake (based in NZ)

They have a large selection of patterned and plain knit fabrics, organic knit fabrics and a very limited selection of woven, non-stretch fabrics.

Hawes & Freer (based in Auckland)

They have a selection of what you could describe as high-end fabrics and bridal fabrics. They also have a lovely selection of sustainable buttons and a wide variety of interfacings, shoulder pads and lining fabrics. I’ve had success emailing them to ask for samples.

Harmless Solutions (based in NZ)

They aren’t a fabric store, but they do sell a variety of undyed cotton, hemp and bamboo fabrics.

Jones and Taylor (based in Taranaki)

They have a selection of Merchant and Mills fabric, and notions from them too. Their store isn’t well maintained so clicking on ‘Fabric’ won’t show you even half of the fabric which is actually listed. They do have a tidy selection of sustainable buttons.

Levana Fabrics (based in NZ)

They have a large selection of knit fabrics, including cotton, modal and merino knit fabrics.

McLean & Co (based in Oamaru)

Not strictly a fabric store, McLean & Co produce hand-loomed fabric from NZ Wool and you can purchase by the metre.

Miss Maude NZ (based in Greytown)

They have a gorgeous selection of really well curated selection of lovely fabrics, which skew to the pricier end of the scale, but are all great quality. They also have a great selection of notions (including bias binding, fancy elastics, etc).

Moreland Fabrics (based in Hamilton)

They have a large selection of well-priced cottons, corduroys and denims and offer a free sample service via post and free shipping for orders over $100.

New Zealand Fabrics & Yarn (based in NZ)

They have a small selection of garment-appropriate fabric, but are predominantly a crafting store (quilting, needlework, felting, etc).

New Zealand Merino & Fabrics (based in NZ)

They have a wide selection of merino fabrics (lots of blends with poly), as the name would suggest. They do also have a ‘fabrics other than merino’ section which seems to always have discounted remnants.

OTY Fabrics (based in NZ)

They have a small selection of of plain and striped cotton spandex knit fabric

Silks NZ (based in Christchurch)

They have a large selection of silk, silk blends, bridal fabrics and their Christchurch warehouse is open, by-appointment. They do send samples but I’ve found they can get pricey pretty quickly

Stitchbird Fabrics (based in NZ)

They have a limited selection of of garment fabrics (including Nani Iro) and have A Lot of quilt fabrics.

Studio of Sewing (based in Auckland)

They have a small but lovely selection of imported fabric from MeetMILK and Atelier Brunette. They also print PDF Patterns on to A0 and will post direct to your door.

Verdant Design (based in Wellington)

They have a selection of organic garment fabrics including organic cottons and organic cotton corduroys.

Zingara Organic Fabrics (based in NZ)

They have a selection of brightly coloured print and plain knit fabric. Their selection of solid colour fabrics include some bright, jewel tone colours which are hard to find elsewhere.

Have I missed any? I’d love to keep the list updated! Let me know in the comments!

Week 1 of MMMayPlus2020

My aim for Me Made May this year is to keep track of my outfits and not repeat an outfit. I’m hoping that this will help me identify items I wear a lot, gaps in my wardrobe and new combinations of my existing clothes.

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Above, Willandra Pants and a hacked Torrens Box Top, both Muna and Broad patterns

I started off on day 1 with grand plans of sketching each of my outfits. This plan quickly evaporated as I realised that I was going to be very busy coordinating things for FatSewing.Club!

I also moved photo location from inside my dimly lit sewing room to outside the front door of my apartment. I take about 30 second each morning to take 2 or 3 selfies using the front camera and timer on my cell phone, and usually don’t get around to posting the photo until I take my first tea break of the morning. This means there’s not much time for anything special (and often I don’t even bother to put shoes on.

MMMay2020
L to R Torrens Box top and Glebe Pants, Torrens Box Top and Elbe Textiles Page Dress, Cashmerette Montrose Top with Sculthorpe Pants and not-yet-released Mallee Coat with Sculthorpe Pants

OnTuesday, we launched the new Willandra Pants from Muna and Broad, and it was great to be able to share more pictures of them (since I was wearing them a lot before we got in to May as well). The hardest time I had was getting photos over the weekends, as I usually wear a variety of me-made outfits which change throughout the day, depending on what I’m doing.

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Clockwise from top left, hacked Grainline Hemlock and Sculthorpe Pants, RTW sweater and Willandra Pants, not-yet-released Nullabor Cami with Willandra Pants and Elbe Textiles Cornell Shirt and Willandra Pants

On Saturday I started sewing while I was still wearing my pyjamas (a PaperTheory LB Pullover in black sweatshirt material and blue Glebe Pants that just didn’t really work in my wardrobe), and then moved in to outfits appropriate for quick try-on sessions with the green cami (above) that I was working on.

So far, it hasn’t been a challenge to dress in me made clothes, especially because I’m working from home where I don’t need to take in to account the temperature of our generally frigid office, or a clothing and shoes match which is appropriate for walking to work (and aforementioned cold office)! All in all, it’s been a nice distraction to spend a little bit more time thinking about my me-made outfit for the day ahead!

Maai Design Willandra Pants

Maai Design Willandra

These Willandra Pants in deep-stash tencel from Maai Design is my third pair of Willandra Pants.

I actually won this tencel in a giveaway over a year ago, and I was so excited when it arrived and I waited and waited for the perfect pattern came along, and in the end I pushed away my thoughts about ‘pants shouldn’t be light colours’ (after all, my most worn pants are natural coloured linen Glebe Pants)! and cut in to this gorgeous fabric.

Maai Design Willandra

Fabric Use:
I think I had won about 2 metres of this fabric, but it was a very generous cut of fabric. I know I can squeeze a pair of these our of 2 metres of 150cm wide fabric (but I might need to piece together the waistband rather than cut it on the fold), so I’ve got enough of this fabric left for a wee scrap-buster project.

Maai Design Willandra
Maai Design Willandra

I’m using Me Made May to take daily outfit photos and I’ve pledged to wear no repeat outfits for the month. I’m excited to use the challenge to explore pairing my pants with different (and perhaps surprising colour combinations)!

New Willandra Pants from Muna and Broad

Milk Plum Willandra

The Willandra Pants are the newest pattern that Leila and I have released as Muna and Broad! These pants are our ‘fancy work pants’ and call for fabric with lots of drape.

Apologies for the over- edited photos, but I tried to lighten the pictures up so you could see my side-seams as the diagonal side seam which wraps around the body is kind of the highlight here (in addition to the extra-fancy look).

Milk Plum Willandra

I made these pants in Maroon colours MeetMILK sanded wash tencel which I purchased from Studio of Sewing in Auckland, New Zealand. The fabric, as the name suggests, has a lovely sandwashed look and the texture is really dreamy to wear.

The tencel wasn’t slippery to sew with and it didn’t fray or stretch over my hems. That’s great news because the diagonal seam means the edge of the pants is mostly on the bias, and over-handling could lead to a lot of stretching out.

Milk Plum Willandra

Size details:

I have a 56″ hip and I make a Size 1 in the Muna and Broad pants patterns (conveniently our sample size. These pants are definitely the most fitted of any of our pants, and I also made sure the elastic was super tight back there, as there’s nothing worse than gapey pants.

I love that these pants have the same excellent fit for me, straight out of the packet. I didn’t make any changes to the pattern other than adding bias tape around the edges of my pocket bags for some extra fanciness.

Milk Plum Willandra

Fabric Usage:

I was able to squeeze my Size 1 pants out of 2 metres of fabric by the pattern pieces out with the fabric on the flat (not folding the fabric over to cut out two mirrored pieces at once. You could potentially achieve the same results by folding the fabric in the opposite direction to usual- one of the leg pieces is much wider than the other, and depending on your size, I think it would be a struggle to fit those across the width of the fabric