A girl worth fighting for | DIY jumpsuit

Learning to love yourself

Hey guys!

 

So late last year, I made this jumpsuit which modeled after a jumpsuit I was supposed to ( but failed to) make for my mom. Turns out it worked just fine whenย  I made it for myself. I have worn this to one of my choir concerts, a work launch party and church and its always a hit. I used a really boxy blouse and some of my loose fitting work pants as a pattern for this. My goal was to go really loose all over and cinch in the waist so its a bit more forgiving. Something about its just looks like I’m a grown woman who is about her business no?

As I was planning for this post I kept thinking of what I wanted to say. What thoughts, views or stories could I share that would embody this jumpsuit. So I thought of how I felt when I wore it.

I felt powerful

especially when I’m posted up like this

I felt feminine

and I felt comfortable

For some reason this made me think of the Mulan soundtrack, specifically, “a girl worth fighting for”. Don’t ask how I arrived here, that was a long train of thought but all you need to know is this is where we ended up; at a girl worth fighting for. Now you probably don’t need me to but I’ll set the stage. The men of China are off to perform their unsavoury duties of going to war and to lift their spirits they decide to “think of instead a girl worth fighting for”. Of course to the men this really meant “she cute or whateva” and you know “she can cook or whateva” and “she thinks I’m funny or whateva”.

Now if you are a Nigerian girl/woman, at some point in your life someone has probably made reference to your “husband’s house”. This could be about how you should behave in this nirvana or how unfit you are to attain the priviledge of your husband’s house; no matter the form, the underlying message seems to be “be the girl worth fighting for”. Be cute and demure. Be entertaining but not in a way that overshadows him. Cook and nurture and be all things to all men really. I guess this wouldn’t be so problematic to me if we held everyone to this standard irrespective of gender but that’s a topic with plenty literature if you’re interested.

All that being said, I think we should all strive to be the girl worth fighting for ๐Ÿ™‚ . Not in the traditional way of course. The girl you fight to become may not be the girl that every man wants but if she’s girl that you are proud to be then that’s where I want you to begin. I am fighting to be the girl that wakes up everyday knowing that she’s valuable. The girl that invests in herself and knows that it is not selfish to do so. The girl that actively enriches the lives of those around her. The girl that understands the need for balance in her life. The girl that holds herself to a standard of excellence in whatever she chooses to do because she knows mediocrity is not a good look. The girl that achieves her goals, that is true to herself and her beliefs. The girl who understands that she has choices to make and that her life should not be dictated by the requirements and expectations of other people. That’s the girl I’m fighting for everyday and I think she’s worth fighting for.

Pictures by Willyverse

Something Borrowed…

Begin styling a midi skirt

This post is a classic case of “borrow borrow make me shine” (I don’t know if that really requires translation).

Being in Nigeria, with full access to my mum’s closet is absolute perfection! She has acculumated so many charming pieces and valuable resources over the years so naturally as her daughter, I think its my responsibility to give her possessions a whirl no? Well whether or not you agree with me, I did just that. My mom found this gorgeous fabric that she’s had since she graduated university and she hasn’t used it since, so I decided to help her by taking it off her hands :D. Surprise surprise…she also had a sewing machine (how amazing is this?? and how have I never known this?!). The minute I saw that fabric the first thing I thought was “Midi Skirt”and right after that I thought “I can’t afford to screw this up”. Now this wouldn’t be the first midi skirt I’ve made so maybe I was feeling a pinch too confident about my abilities but this skirt was w.o.r.k! The last midi skirt I made was an upcycle so I didn’t anticipate the challenges I might have making this from scratch. Basically, I had no clue what I was getting myself into.

Begin Midi back view

I started by measuring my waist and how long I wanted it to be. From that point on I felt like I was on an island with no map and only a picture of my destination. I knew what I wanted to get but I had no idea how to achieve it. In hindsight, planning might have helped me here. If I had done a teeny bit of research before starting I would have know to cut ย the fabric to 3 times my waist size so when I added my pleats, I could achieve the fullness I wanted. I started off with something that looked like a pencil skirt gone wrong. Then I tried to make it more a-line but I only wrecked it more. It was only after research and lots of redone stitches that I managed to get it looking like this.

Begin Midi Skirt

For difficulty, I would rate it a 5/10, it was not my easiest project but it would have been a lot easier if I had started properly. Oh and while we’re on the topic of difficulty, I think I’m starting to really get the hang of zippers! It took me a few attempts but I managed to keep my invisible zipper relatively invisible ๐Ÿ˜€

Begin invisible zip

When I remake this skirt (note I did not say “if”), I will look into the slip stitch more seriously, I tried looking at a Pintrest picture tutorial when I was making this skirt. When that failed miserably, I decided to follow my heart and I managed to hem it somehow, not sure what that stitch is called but it did the job ๐Ÿ˜› (the too-lazy-to-follow-the-pintrest-one stitch?)

With the many up’s and down I faced making this skirt I was reminded that this is what I signed up for when I decided to teach myself to sew. I signed up for trial and error, for hours spent redoing one seemingly simple thing, and of course for the absolute pride I feel when I’m done. It’s frustrating sometimes but its always worth it.

I decided to maintain the theme of “out of mama’s closet” and took her old sunglasses (which I intend to own), her scarf, and her book to accessorize this look. The humidity also lent me a ton of volume so as I said in the beginning…borrow borrow make me shine ๐Ÿ™‚ ย Begin something borrowed

pictures by Willyverse

Skirting about with the magic of patterns

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Ooh la la!!!!!!!

I had no idea how amazingly fantastic patterns were! And no I don’t mean patterned fabric (although that’s also uber fantastic and relevant to this post). I’m talking about patterns that help you craft the perfect piece every time, much like a stencil if you will.

I feel the need to explain what a pattern is because I had never heard of one up until a couple of months ago when I first started researching how to make my own clothes. There are tons of blog posts that explain better what a pattern is but basically its a cut out that helps to guide you on how exactly to cut your fabric for a specific piece of clothing. You could buy your patterns ooooor make them which is what I decided to do. I would discuss how to make your patterns in a future post as I’m still learning and trying to perfect it myself.

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Anyhow, I made a pattern for a pencil skirt and seeing as I had quite a bit of fabric left over from the shorts I decided to makeย myself this pretty little number!

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For difficulty I would rate this a 5/10.

My main challenges were:

*attaching the invisible zip. (I find Zippers in general to be a little tricky)

*When I had finally succeeded with the zip, I decided to add a little pearl button to hold the waist together but unfortunately I had not accounted for a button hole so that bit is still a little wonky.

*Finally there was the huge debacle of the pointy hips. This was a problem that came from my pattern. (Note to self: don’t try to draw a curved line with a straight ruler, it just won’t work boo!). Anyhow that was fixed by trying it on, pinning things in place and sewing down.

I’m pretty happy with the outcome, well i’ll be really happy as soon as i find a way around that wonky button hole ๐Ÿ™‚Begin-skirt back

Warm Floaty Cotton Candy.

How I made my chiffon top

So as my sewing journey begins I have attempted a few things not all of which have really worked out (a.k.a its a 70-30 split between bad and good).

Anyhow, I decided to make a little hit list of stuff I intend to sew. At the very top of that list? A floaty tank top and since I had only just bought waaay too much chiffon I decided to put that puppy to good use.

begin: Pink Chiffon

As a project, I would rank the difficulty level a 4/10.

*My primary issue as usual was sewing a straight line. So simple yet so complex *sigh*.

*My second issue was the utter flimsyness of chiffon. Seeing as I’ve been working with cotton for the most part I was a little frustrated with how easily chiffon slips and slides all over the place.

*My final challenge was cutting perfect lines. I intend to invest in a roller cutter in the very near future.

All in all I was content with the outcome. ๐Ÿ˜€

begin: Pink Chiffon back

People barely noticed the flaws and it would look absolutely adorable with jeans and itty bitty skirts.

Super excited for projects to come ๐Ÿ™‚

.begin:pink chiffon top