This is a bit of a weird one. I apologise for the stream-of-consciousness of it, if you just want to look at Me Made May pics, please scroll down.
If you saw my last post (or follow me on Twitter), you'll know I'm fighting the depression end of my cyclothymia at the moment. But I decided the regularity and keeping-goingness of Me Made May as I'd pledged to do it (including the spring cleaning of closet and sewing lair) would do me good.
So here's the first week's pics though you'll understand why I look pretty 'not usual Tempest' in them. I always think it's good to keep a record of what I'm going through. Actually that's a lie. I've only just realised, perhaps in the last 5 years, with a lot of help from psychotherapists/analysts/CBT counsellors and my lovely NHS mental health care support team, that keeping a record of the ups and downs and plateauing is a good thing. Often when I'm in deep I think it's the end of the world and it's always been like this and I'll never climb out. But keeping a record of the times when I did feel better and started functioning OK again helps me realise the sun will come out again. Similarly, it's useful to see the times I'm hitting the hypers because they're the best indication that a low will be coming some time and I can start buying in food and stopping saying yes to things in readiness to weather the storm. I'm blabbering. Anyway, these pics might help me record the passage through in a new way than just words in a diary. If I suddenly stop and things go quiet don't worry though....the sun DOES always come back eventually.
By the way, if you're reading this and need help....there's an excellent FREE website called Living Life to the Full that has little videos and cognitive behavioural therapy exercises you can work through for ANYONE experiencing some sort of mental health issues, even if it's just not being able to get the energy to tackle anything, or feeling down....don't ever belittle your mental health, if you don't feel right the BEST way to tackle it is to take some form of ACTION, if you feel able, it's also ok to have duvet days when you need them, but try to set a limit on how long you're going to give in to feeling depressed before trying to take a step forward. Anyway.....sorry, I really am all over the place and we haven't even got to the photos yet haha.......if you need some help PLEASE TALK TO SOMEONE. SO MANY OF US are going through EXACTLY what you are now and there is help out there. I'll pop some links and numbers at the bottom of this post if you need immediate help, but check out the Living Life to the Full website too......I've found it incredibly useful and it's free, you can pick the exercises when and where you want, you don't have to do all the exercises/watch the videos - just what you need....I know the name of it sounds a bit new-agey, but it was created by a psychiatrist expert in CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy) with the Scottish NHS and some mental health charities, and honestly it's a good place to start. Click on the pic for the link:
I love the print and generally like the dress, but seeing as I'm using Me Made May '13 to examine my wardrobe for repairs/alterations needed and points I can learn from stuff I've made, here's my thoughts:
- the dress didn't have pockets - it NEEDS pockets (since last week, I've so far added one pocket, but improvements are taking time as the dress is full-lined),
- I need to stop making dresses with bateau necklines....they look fine but the high necklines make me feel constricted and put me off wearing these dresses on a more regular basis.
- the bodice fit isn't fantastic, but hey, I made a fully-lined dress in a week for the Sew Weekly challenge so that's cool. If I can be bothered some time I need to take the bodice and lining apart and take it all in by about an inch from the bottom of the armsyche to the waist. I probably won't be bothered though and will continue to wear the dress to evenings out or at Thanksgiving.
- I need to wear the dress to Red Lobster sometime. It's had fab responses at Chilis and Applebees....it will totally rock at Red Lobster.
Here are the make details and pics of me not particularly smiling in it as it was for a Sew Weekly challenge in the week of the Newtown school shootings.
There's not much wrong with this dress. It does. The black linen does pick up EVERY SINGLE cat hair and fabric thread when I'm sewing, but that's ok. And the black and white Alexander Henry (I think) print does pull sideways, slipping off the shoulders after a little wear because I cut it from a tiny off-cut so neither piece is cut correctly on the grain but both slightly on the bias, so they stretch slightly. But that's ok. It's a muck-about dress. It's good on a bad day. And it possibly looks even better in winter with a colourful long-sleeved top under it....see the original post about the make for pics.
Another absolute go-to 'throw-it-on-in-the-morning-and-don't-have-to-worry-about-dressing' dress. You can tell I'm down, I've got my 'security' cowboy boots on too....they're like a security blanket but muckier.
I'm trying though, I've thrown a little jewellery.
Though there's not much wrong with this dress....hence why I wear it so much....I should have probably stabilised the neckline a little better....it drifts off my shoulders, and I keep thinking about sewing some velcro bra-strap clinger-ontos (there's probably a proper name for those, little straps you can velcro closed underneath your bra strap to keep the shoulder in place), but haven't yet gotten around to it.
Should have ironed it, but didn't have the energy. Though this shirt/dress unfortunately gets me attention when out and about....I can't hide in it, it's still a comfort outfit. I made it after my LBD (little balck dress) debacle and it's comfy and quirky and can almost raise a smile in me if I'm not too far down. I think I was too far down this morning.
I'm pretty happy with it as it is. No improvements needed.
Here are the details of the make and pics of me dancing to Talking Head's Stop Making Sense in it, as you do.
Day Five - Cinco de Mayo:
Just the red skirt as a Me Made this time. It's one of my Bowie Sew Along/1940's Sew for Victory contributions....see make details and more very silly photos of me in it as David Bowie and/or a Farm Girl here.
The skirt is too big at the waist, which is fine when I wear it with braces (suspenders for you Americans)....but as it's an incredibly useful staple garment in my wardrobe, it could do with fixing. AND IT NEEDS POCKETS!!!!!
My Wenlock Onesie, made (no surprises here either) for the 2012 Olympics last year. And regularly wheeled out when I need a slob day.....or want to do impressions of the Emperor from Star Wars....should have worn this on May (the) 4th (be with you) really shouldn't I?
Nothing on this needs altering, it does exactly what it promises when you climb inside it and snuggle down.
Here's the original post about it's make, photos of me being very silly in it and why I loved Wenlock the London 2012 mascot....we're connected you know.
This is probably my Me Made that gets the most wearings out, and it is actually wearing it out.
I made the mistake because of the hectic speed of being part of the Sew Weekly challenges last year and making each garment in a week of using cheap red shirting cotton for the contrast sections. These are beginning to look washed out. The Spider Man fabric looks fine, but the red blocks let it down a little in real life. I won't make that mistake again. I'm gradually trying to buy better quality fabrics for makes (unless I can grab some absolute bargains in Goodwill and my other favourite thrift stores (charity shops)).
Otherwise this dress is just perfect, I adore the pockets and the fit and the zip. Yep, the eagle-eyed of you will realise this is made with the same pattern (McCalls 6324) as the Day Two dress above. It's a very cool pattern.
Btw, if you want to see all of the things I've sewn at once, and gets links to the original posts, then I've almost completed the 'Things I've Sewn' archive page....there are now links to 50 of the posts and will soon have all my makes on there.
OK, that's your lot....move along now.
If you've scrolled down for the additional mental health links and numbers, here you are:
Need immediate help?
In the USA, call 1-800-273-8255 National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.
In the UK, call 08457 90 90 90 for the Samaritans, you're not alone.
Find a helpline for your country through Befrienders Worldwide.
All the very best my friend, big big hugs. It will get better, but you might just need some help from people who know what they're doing.