Wardrobe Architect 2015 Challenge – February Round-up and other bits

The good news is that it’s March and we’re closer to Spring and there is a bit more sun to go round and cheer us up. The bad news is that February is gone already and I can hardly imagine what I’ve done with it… So I had to sit down and have a think, and I might as well write it down too…

On the plus side:

Retail fast challenge: success! Not a single item purchased, and I was not even tempted! OK, I was a bit tempted when I saw my friend Gill with this amazing Fedora hat and I really wanted one too. Maybe hats are OK? From the charity shops? Or am I cheating? It felt so good not to have to think about it, shopping belongs is a part of my brain that is no longer in need. I do feel a bit righteous, so I’d better move on to the next topic :). Great British Sewing Bee: I wasn’t sure if to put this one on the plus side or minus side, but in the end, although I got eliminated quite early on, it was an amazing experience. I made friends for life, it motivated me to get out there and meet people in the sewing world and also gave me the impetus to start this here blog :). I didn’t want to make a big fuss about my ever so fugitive presence on the show here on the blog, but I do want to wrap it up with a few of my favourite few Alex Bee moments. 1. My one and only glory moment: the (in)famous pink tutu skirt. Although you wouldn’t catch me dead wearing it, I have to admit it did save my (pink) bacon :). And I had about a million kids asking me to make them one too.GBSB S3 Alex Pink Tutu 2. McHammer in the flower garden – that was just hilarious! And I had such a laugh making them too. I especially loved the pants/trousers confusion, I used to do that all the time when I first moved to Britain, with some embarrassing/hilarious consequences. Harem trousers Thank you all again for your lovely kind words, the encouraging messages on the blog and on Twitter and for your continuous support by following the blog. As it turns out I was quite a hit with kids, as I had loads of work colleagues and friends of friends who either got inspired to sew by watching me on TV or wanted me to make stuff for them. Hmmm, maybe this could be a future venture? This is a lovely pic from Jess (6) whose dad is friends with my friend Gary. Gary asked me to make a little video to say hi to Jess and she sent me this picture as a ‘thank you’. Just how cute is this?!!? Letter from Jess

On the minus side:

I have to confess, more minuses this month than pluses, I blame the fewer number of days… Wardrobe architect February challenge: miserable failure! We were supposed to go through the closet and mercilessly eradicate all fluff, unwanted, unworn, and overall clutter. I had had a big purge before New Year’s, so I did feel I can put it off a bit. I am usually quite determined when it comes to getting rid of old clothes, but for some reason, I felt quite sentimental this time. My plan is to just sort out the maybes, take them off the rails and put them in a storage box at the bottom of my wardrobe instead of passing them off to charity straight away. A sort of wardrobe purgatory if you will. But we just didn’t have the time to go to IKEA and purchase said boxes, but hopefully a job for next weekend. This reminds me a bit of when I first moved to the UK in 2010 and I lived out of a suitcase for two months until my boxes arrived. There is definitely something in that frugal living thing for sure. Have a look at Project 33, though not sure I’m hard core enough to live with just 33 items :). I also started thinking about my spring capsule wardrobe and started rounding up potential patterns. You can have a look at the Pinterest board here. indie patterns It dawned on me that my little tropical wedding is getting closer and I need to start thinking not only about my wedding dress (panic!!!), but all those lovely days in the sun. All the talk on the GBSB about the cruise and Lorna’s tales of sun in the Caribbean and awesome outfits to sip Pina Coladas in made me realise that time is short and my productivity is awfully low lately, so I’d better get planning. Watch out for the march update on how well that went (probably not very…).

The stats:

Garments completed: 0 (boo!) Bad Alex, no cookie! Refashions: 2 (the skirt and the dress out of the jumper here) and the second refashioned jumper similar to this one here. Other: 2 I made a very cute bag for my bosses daughter, who is a GBSB fan. She sent me a lovely card which I very much appreciated. Bag letter collage I also made a very boring, but oh, so practical headboard snake. I know this sounds weird, but I had made a silly mistake and bought a bed without a headboard and we ended up with quite a big gap between the mattress and the wall, which swallowed my pillow every night, and really really annoyed me. So I made a sort of draft excluder type snake to fill the gap. Not very elegant, but so practical! I’ve been sleeping so much better since. Also on the plus side, it swallowed all my odd bits of fabric, old muslins, remnants and what not. So I did feel like I cluttered a bit as well. Double win! Complete disasters: 2 The fur and faux leather jacket I mentioned in January got the better of me, so I gave up and unpicked it. The lower part of leather sleeves went into the refashion above and the upper part are still waiting for a suitable raglan sleeve project that might require them. The fur will probably end up some sort of a scarf, but I can’t even look at it for the moment… I also had a run in with Mimi (from Love at First Stitch by Tilly) and she and I are definitely not friends! It’s probably me, but I could not get the fit right not matter how hard I tried (and I unpicked the sleeves 4 times and the front yoke about 2 times each). There was a weird waving/twisting going on under the front yoke. I have seen it with other people, but not as bad as mine. Maybe I just cut out the wrong size? So I gave up before event attempting the buttonholes as I knew I would not wear it. She will end up in the guts of my headboard snake, I have a feeling. Unselfish sewing: 0.5 I have started a self designed skirt for my friend. We did the planning and toile fitting last Friday, when I could have been sewing something for myself, so I’m counting this one in :). So how has gloomy February been treating you all? Any blazing failures? Roaring successes? And what of the March plans? I have a list of projects as long as my arm, I can only wish for time!! HAPPY SEWING!



  1. i did totally terrible in february too! i refashioned one garment and i hate the way it turned out…so i think it made me lose some of my sew-jo.
    I was so sad when you got off the show! but there are some very very talented people on that show! i love lorna so much!


    1. Ugh, must be February, gloomy and too short :). March has started well though, I’ve already made a dress that I really love!
      I can’t believe it’s the Final on Thursday already!! How did it go by so quickly? Lorna is great, but then again, all the guys are. We got together at the weekend, it was such a good laugh!
      Chin up, spring is here, loads of nice clothes to be made!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes we will blame it on February hehe
        I can’t wait to see this dress you made!! I haven’t made anything still, I just ordered some fabric for a pattern I’m testing and I just drafted a pattern last night off of my favorite t-shirt so hopefully I’ll get my sew-no back.
        I need to catch up on the episodes!! I think I am on episode 4.
        OMG PATRICK GRANT. He looks so dreamy on that show! Haha and he’s just brilliant with fit. Love that man!
        That’s so cool that you guys all still see each other! That’s great! And yes all those men are great!


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