not in love, but…

Wow, how has it already been a month since Hobbit was born? It’s been both rewarding and challenging. On the one hand, aside from some occasional crankiness, I’m surprised at how well I’ve been able to function while averaging 4-5 hours of often-interrupted sleep every night. And Hobbit does nap well…the challenge is more that it’s mostly while he’s being held, and it was just last week that I managed to successfully get him to take some naps while I wasn’t holding him and could actually get some stuff done–namely, making the project that is the subject of this post! (Also, he eats SO much. Hobbit was a very appropriate nickname!)

(And thanks for all of the kind comments! We think he’s pretty adorable, but we may be a little biased.)

The other challenge has been getting dressed. I knew that my figure wasn’t going to immediately go back to what it was pre-pregnancy, but I was honestly surprised at how very, very few of my clothes actually do fit right now! Including some things that I thought would fit decently enough, like my Tiramisu dresses. It’s been very strange for me, since I was fortunate enough to have a pretty steady weight/measurements for most of my adult life, and now all of my shirts are extra-tight and I literally only have about 5 things that I can get over my hips, all elastic-waist. Needless to say, I’m having a bit of a wardrobe crisis. (I’m especially a little freaked out at the thought of cooler weather hitting and having literally no pants or jeans.) So as soon as I could find some spare time without a napping baby on my lap, I made a thing!

Adelaide frontThis is the Adelaide dress from Seamwork magazine, chosen both for its supposedly fast sewing time and for how forgiving it looked like it would be for my post-partum figure. That, and it looked very nursing-friendly, which is going to have to be the theme of everything I make for my upper half for awhile, I think.  I wasn’t 100% sure about the fit, since I was never completely satisfied with the Sorbetto on me, so I opted for the wearable muslin route. The fabric is a mystery woven, probably a poly-cotton blend, that was given to me for free when someone else destashed it to my mom–when this happens, she passes on whatever isn’t good for quilts to me.

While I like the color well enough, I thought I’d get bored with a solid dress. Also, I don’t have the right kind of set-in snaps on hand. So in the interest of stashbusting, I decided to swap those out for these sparkly red buttons that I originally got with a Beignet skirt in mind, before deciding that a red skirt wasn’t something that my closet needed after all and giving away the fabric in a swap. I kept the buttons, though, because sparkly, so I’m glad I finally found something to do with them! To tie those in better, I topstitched the placket, neckline and armholes in red. But I stuck with the blue for the belt and belt loops, because I don’t want to draw that much attention to my waist while I’m (hopefully) losing the extra weight.

Adelaide backI’ll be honest–I don’t love this dress. It does serve its intended purpose, and it did knock an entire piece of yardage out of my stash–2 3/5 yards, for the record. I guess I just don’t feel like it’s entirely me. I’m not sure how much of that feeling is a commentary on the solids, or that my body is a stranger that I’m having to get to know all over again.  It might be worth giving the pattern another shot sometime, because I do feel that it’s more of a fabric issue than a stylistic one. I wonder if I’d feel better about it if it was in a print, or a fabric that draped a little better so I wouldn’t have that bit of gaping in the neckline. Or maybe just a different shade of blue?

But at this point, I’m also feeling like this beggar can’t be too choosy. And there are plusses to the utilitarian stashbusting–I don’t really have to iron this one after washing, and I don’t particularly care if he spits up on it.

I do have a couple of other projects in mind that will hopefully carry me through the warmer portion of the fall. And once I get cleared to be more active again, hopefully in 2 weeks, I figure I can start taking Hobbit for walks. Maybe, if all goes well, I’ll at least be able to fit into my collection of Thurlow pants again by the time it gets cold. After all, they worked until the end of my first trimester, where all of my other pants failed, so a girl can hope. Right?

Have you ever had to rebuild your wardrobe almost from scratch? How did you deal with it? Or, for those of you who have had kids, how long did you hold on to your old clothes (especially me-mades) to see if they would fit again or not?

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8 thoughts on “not in love, but…

  1. Hi Becky, Wow, you were able to care for the Hobbit and make an entire dress?! Good work, and I like the modern take on a shirtwaist dress. The blue is very flatteringand yea for stashbusting.

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  2. Becky,

    I think the dress looks great (and so do you 🙂 ! I have always found post-partum to be the most challenging time (worse even than that awkward transition in the first/second trimester) — and this is my third time! I keep thinking it will get easier because I've had more experience, but it always seems to take me by surprise. A good selection of maxi skirts certainly helped this time (and worked during pregnancy, as well). Your body will be returning to more of its pre-pregnancy shape over time (in my experience it takes months for hips to shrink, and I got back to my pre-pregnancy weight a year to the day with my first), but there may be some permanent changes. My rib cage definitely expanded, despite being large to begin with. I did end up ditching a number of non-nursing friendly me-mades when I realized that at our current rate, I'd get about two or three months of wear between finishing nursing one baby and becoming pregnant with the next. There were a few that just didn't fit right anymore, too, especially in the rib cage. Now I try to stick to “transitional” styles that work for at least 2 stages ('normal,” pregnancy, post-partum), because we hope to have more children. So in that regard, it will depend largely on your future plans and/or timeline. That's my two cents worth!

    So glad to hear that you and Hobbit are doing well! 🙂

    Blessings,
    Shannon

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  3. I'm seriously impressed that you made an entire dress during thecfirst month as a mom! I really like that shade of blue on you. A bit like a Belle dress. 🙂

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  4. You are doing so well if you've managed to do some sewing in the first month!! Well done! Hmmm, postpartum bodies; I've totally forgotten what that was like, and actually I don't think I gave it any thought at the time either, was just way too busy! I remember I did devote nearly all my sewing time to making things for my children in those years, very few things for me. Making kiddie clothes is LOTS of fun!

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  5. Wow, thanks for all of that information! I have started an initial wardrobe purge to get rid of some things that are way too tight/short, or were so fitted that I know I'll never be able to wear them again. We are hoping/planning for at least 1 more kid in the future, so this is all good to keep in mind for my future sewing plans.

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  6. I do plan on making some things while he's little, but we were given soooo many baby clothes that I don't feel like I can justify it right now! So I'm going to wait a bit and try to restock my wardrobe in the meantime.

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