The Made Up Initiative

The sewing community is a bloody brilliant bunch of people, isn’t it? I mean, I’m still very much on the periphery of this community but they’re all so welcoming and have such love and enthusiasm for creating beautiful things from fabric and thread. It’s great to even think I might be considered part of it. OK, I’m gushing.

made-up-logo-ii One example of what a great community it is comes in the form of The Made Up Initiative from Karen of Did You Make That? In short, the goal is to raise £1,000 for National Literacy Trust (NLT) by pledging whatever you can whilst also setting yourself a sewing challenge; big or small! If you manage to complete your challenge by the 10 September deadline, you’ll be entered into a draw to win £300 of prizes from The Village HaberdasheryColette Patterns, Tilly and the ButtonsSew Over ItLove Sewing magazine, and much more!

National Literacy Trust

NLT work to improve the reading, writing, speaking and listening skills in the UK’s most disadvantaged communities, where up to 40 per cent of people have literacy problems. Their focus is mainly on families, young people and children and through literacy projects, campaigning and supporting schools they aim to make literacy a priority.

Coming from a household of readers and book lovers, it’s a cause that I consider hugely worthwhile so instantly wanted to donate something, but what challenge was I going to set myself?

My pledge

The idea of getting involved was both wonderfully exciting and thoroughly scary — I knew I’d have to set myself a reasonable challenge, not just making another dress. Should I choose a difficult pattern? Or a tricky fabric perhaps? And what could I realistically achieve in a month?

Thankfully, my answer was lurking within the post which arrived on my desk this morning: the 8 patterns (yes, 8!) I’d ordered from a half-price sale on Simplicity and New Look patterns, courtesy of, several of which will form the basis of my capsule wardrobe as part of Wardrobe Architect. There, on the top of the pile, was Simplicity 1696 Amazing Fit Trousers. In contrast to the other patterns — including skorts and a cape no less — these are definitely a worthy adversary as I’m yet to create a pair of well-fitting trousers. My Sew Over It Ultimate Trousers (coming soon on the blog!) could possibly be described as a no-toile-making disaster. Yup, these were going to be my challenge, specifically to produce a pair that fit, amazingly!

Now it’s just time to choose some fabric! I’ve already gotten myself some great inspiration thanks to the sewing community and their willingness to blog their makes. But if anyone has any ideas on great fabric for trousers, I’d love to know!

The initiative has already proven to be a very popular and worthwhile cause. Within a few hours of Karen’s blog post to announce today’s launch of the initiative, £250 of the £1,000 target had already been pledged on JustGiving!


5 thoughts on “The Made Up Initiative

    • No problem! Thank you for having the idea and setting it in motion! There seem to be reasonably good reviews and I do like the idea; that you have a body type (I’m apparently ‘curvy’) as well as a size, and that the construction allows for fine-tuning.


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