Wednesday 21 March 2018

Urban Farming (AKA Mila Dunagrees)

Cards on the table: I'm not feeling great about my body at the moment. Winter eating patterns (AKA eating EVERYTHING), having had two babies, as well as entering my late thirties all seem to have taken their toll recently and I'm not feeling at all comfortable. I'm hoping that improved eating habits and adapting my expectations will meet in the middle and I'll feel happier in the near future. But in the meantime, I thought it best to make myself a stretchy, tight fitting garment to wear and get photographed in, then share those pictures on the internet. Behold: my new Urban Farmer look. 


Like many I don't doubt, I was instantly drawn to the Mila dungarees pattern. I love wearing jeggings (despite all the hassle they've given me) and I hoped these would be a fun and interesting alternative. Tilly was kind enough to send me a copy of the pattern, so I made a special pilgrimage to Fabric Godmother (more on the fabric in a bit) and set to work. 

I cut the TATB-size 4, and made a couple of small changes. Firstly, I re-drafted the curved edge of the bib piece so that it finished a bit closer to the side seam. And secondly, I spent quite a bit of time making tiny tweaks to the fit of the legs to get them looking balanced all the way down. I could easily have lopped off a few centimetres from the leg length, but I've made too many pairs of jeans and trousers that have ended up annoyingly short after a few washes, so I'm keeping these a bit long as I expect they may do the same. 

The fit-tweaking aside, I found the process of making these sooooo much fun. Working with a well behaved denim and doing all that tidy topstitching was heaven. If I were to make them again, I might even add some extra topstitching to the waistbands or crotch seam, as the topstitching is currently largely concentrated on the bib area. 


Despite some stunning patterned versions popping up on IG, I knew I needed to keep my pair solid. And it had to be denim if they were to become the alternative jeans/jeggings that I hoped they would. I can't find this denim on the Fabric Godmother website right now, so you'll have to go with my title: fabulous-quality mid-blue stretch denim. I always associate this colour denim with the 1970's, and I adore how it looks contrasted with orangey-gold topstitching thread. I must admit, there is a part of me that is regretting not making these dungarees in black. But having made my Cleo pinafore in black, I felt my wardrobe would welcome a little variety. 

Let's talk hard wear. I was sent the buckle set that Tilly stocks with the pattern, and I ended up using the clips combined with these antique copper jeans buttons. Fabric Godmother also stocks the smaller 14mm antique copper jeans buttons, which I got for the side fastenings. I think these buttons suit the denim's colour and vintage-y vibe, whereas I feel it would be silver all the way if I made a black pair. 


As I'm sure you can tell, I haven't landed on a final opinion on these yet. Perhaps I should have made them in black and saved this vintage-y denim for some epic Lander pants? It is, of course, impossible to say. 

This post is feeling a bit confessional somehow, but I must also admit that the fit around the bum area is not great. I did get Pat to take a pic, but I really didn't feel like sharing that one today. However, I may share that pic with the tutor of The Perfect Jeans craftsy class and get her opinion on what could be improved (as I wrote about in this post). It may be that a bit of scooping could get them looking and fitting better, but I'm not ready to jump down that rabbit hole right now.  

What I do know, is that these feel fairly comfortable. More comfortable than I was expecting them to feel, if truth be told. Stating the obvious, they are currently a bit too tight around my middle. But me  laying off the bread and choc a bit, and putting them through a few more wears and washes, and they should be sufficiently loosened up. Plus, if I can't get them looking better (either through sorting myself out a bit or working on the fit some more), I could always relegate them to use on my future allotment...


Unknown said...

Hi Zoe, the overalls look great on you from the front! Fitting ant is so hard! Jennifer Stern is amazing. I actually went I was in the area for a college graduation) and she helped me fit my jeans in person! :)

Natasha said...

You look beautiful! Thanks for sharing your makes. :)

Maria said...

Dear Zoe,

I´m so sorry to hear that you don´t feel so good about your body at the moment. I´m telling you you look wonderful, but will it make a lot of difference? With whom are you comparing yourself? Compared to me and many moms around me, your really thin.
For some food for thought on beeing easier on yourself, I recomend reading a few posts on the curvy sewing colective. And also, the book "The Bodies of Mothers" is a great coffe table book.
I think there will probably come a point in my life where I can do sports again and feel like myself more (our kids are the same ages, so not so much me-time at the moment), but I will probably never fit into a size 4 or even 8 or 10 again and that´s ok.
And I hope my daughter will feel beautiful just as she is when she grows up, as I hope will yours!
You really look great, zoe.

Fabric Tragic said...

Oh lovely I hear you, but honestly I was only thinking the other day how fab you looked after two babes. The end of winter leaves very few of us feeling sleek. I think come spring proper you’ll love these!

110 Creations said...

I absolutely LOVE these. I think the way you’ve shaped the legs on these is really flattering. I’ve had three babies and it’s taken a while to get used to my new body. My youngest is rapidly approaching 2 and I’ve accepted that parts of me (hello hips and mama pooch) are just not going back to where they were before. I’ve started sewing different silhouettes that make me more comfortable, and that has helped, along with lots of positive self-talk.

Anonymous said...

I think you look great Zoe and so do the dungarees!:)

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