Friday, 7 April 2017


This is embarrassing...
My last post was full of good intentions.
I want to keep posting.
I'd been keeping a bullet journal since January and have been really productive, trying to open up a shop to sell the things I sew. I had been doing well, for a little while there, but everything seems to have ground to a halt.

I've made a bunch of tote bags and napkins, pyjama trousers and even a couple of unique dresses.  I worked hard and put a lot of effort into these, but haven't really moved forward since.
I wrote a long post explaining everything that has been going on in my life, but I don't think a wall of complaints is what anyone wants to read, so here's the gist:

Bad luck seems to come in large bouts, all at the same time, and lately my family and I have been going through one of them.
Opening a business is a lot harder and more complicated than I thought, especially when I am in such a bad place, and persistently suffer with social anxiety that is particularly bad when it comes to phone calls.
Sometimes I really don't feel like I'm fit to deal with life. I don't know how other people continue functioning when faced with stress and hardship.
Maybe there is something wrong with me, or maybe I'm just a pathetic sissy, or maybe both.

I will get there.  I will make those dreaded phone calls that make me nauseous, I will be organised, I will open my business, and I will make money. But things may continue to be slow around here, because my loved-ones and I have been dealt some bad luck, and I am astonishingly bad at dealing with it.

I'm sorry, but I probably won't be blogging, like I said I would, for a while.

Milla x

Sunday, 5 February 2017

Boredom, freedom, openness

To anyone who happens to stumble upon this blog, it will be painfully obvious that I have all but abandoned it.
Once upon a time, I was posting weekly updates on my sewing journey.
I was committed.
I had posts lined up a month in advance.
But as time went on, I started to realise that every time I would take the trouble to write a long update on here, with multiple pictures, it would be met with silence.
Maybe 10 views, maybe 5.
And all the while, I was posting quick, easy updates to Instagram, which had a far further reach.
It was easier and more fun
And it still is.
I didn't enjoy writing blog posts at all, so I decided not to use this blog anymore, and just post to Instagram:

I think where I went wrong was trying to write about the projects I'd been working on every week.
It's too rigid of a formula and is not well suited to a blog.
But I've changed a lot over the 10 months since I last posted anything.
Though I've always been somewhat of an environmentalist, I've grown a much bigger interest in making whatever efforts I can to save the planet.
I've improved my sewing skills so massively that I now feel confident enough to begin selling them.
I've begun to (at least attempt to) overcome my feelings of embarrassment and fear over trying to make money.  I must keep telling myself that I'm broke and I deserve a chance at using my skills to help me to live and pursue my dreams.
I've continued to be deeply in love and to struggle with the hardships long distance in a relationship.
I've made a small dent in my enormous problem with social anxiety.
I've been making attempts to get back into drawing, an old passion.

Here's my point: I'm a person and my life is not entirely about my sewing projects and nothing else.
I love sewing, but I want to allow myself to talk openly about anything I see fit, and not be presenting myself as constantly churning out dress after dress, for free, for myself, my friends, or family.
I'm afraid to do this. I'm afraid to open up about other aspects of my life.
I love people who are open, who talk about anything and don't feel like ashamed of what they say.
I love people who wear their heart on their sleeve and don't care what anyone thinks.
I am not one of those people. Well, I am, with my friends...
But I have a huge fear of talking to people that I'm not already really close with,
If you've met me you've probably been struck by how quiet and reserved I am
Maybe you even thought I was snubbing you,
But I'm not. I'm painfully shy and anxious around other people, and putting this stuff out there under the name "Milla Chaney" feels pretty terrifying.
But I also think it's important.
We need more open people in this world.
We need more people to be genuine, and acknowledge that life is not always perfect.

I am going to try to start blogging again, but with a much more fun and open structure that will make it feel like I'm writing about my week to a friend, rather than a chore.
I will be talking about sewing, because it is a huge part of my life.
I will also be talking about veganism, environmentalism, mental health, physical health, life plans, things that annoy me, things I love, and anything I feel like sharing.

I'm sure this will be incredibly boring for many to read, and I'm sure I will not see an increase in views, but it's what I want to do.
There is nothing more boring than reading the words of a bored person.
Except maybe writing them.

If you are at all interest in seeing regular updates on what I've been sewing, go ahead and check out my Instagram, as I post there pretty regularly, usually about sewing.

This has been longer than I intended.
I thank anyone who took the time to read this,
Milla x

Tuesday, 19 April 2016

Two tartans

I made this skirt & shirt combo for my mum quite a while back.
She says she has lost weight and it now needs altering, but personally I think it looks pretty good on her.
It took a lot of effort to line up all the stripes in the top, but I think it was worth it.
I'm very pleased with how this turned out, and I especially like the neckline.
The buttons are actually just decorative, but I was told I had to put the button-hole stitching in there anyway to make it look authentic.
I protested the extra work but decided to do it in the end.
I wanted her to be happy with the end product and wear it.
And she is happy.
Thanks for reading me,
Milla x

Monday, 11 April 2016

March is gone...

March is gone and it has been for almost two weeks.
I did not reach my goal of 8 garments this month, nor did I keep up with blogging once a week and I am a little ashamed of it.
I do not really have a sewing space here, save for a small table, full to the brim with sewing equipment including a machine which a family member of my boyfriend's was kind enough to lend to me.
The room it is in has also begun to house my clothes since they don't seem to have a place to call their permanent residence at the moment...
However, I plan to get back on my sewing feet after a nice kind-of holiday spending time with my boyfriend.
I'm still in America, but I really have a strong feeling of needing to work for myself.
We have been obsessed with watching the old X Files lately and have not been super productive.
But I have to move forward and keep sewing.
I have to keep making things and developing my skills.
I've made a few things since arriving here: a blue dress, darned some jeans, seriously redesigned and adjusted some window-hangings for my boyfriend's mother.
However, I no longer have my extremely lovely and obliging photographer mother to help keep me up to date with blog pictures.
I also lost my phone charger, which doesn't particularly matter as I do not have phone service, but it does mean that Instagram has ground to a halt.
I have no pictures to show today, unfortunately.
I do have quite a few pieces that I have made and not been able to photograph, so hopefully I'll get some pictures of those up in the near future.
Thank you for reading me,

Friday, 25 March 2016

Inspiration, recuperation.

Since I've been travelling lately and have not ha a lot of opportunity to make or take pictures of clothes, I thought I' just post a couple of images of fabrics that I've seen and liked.
I was recently asked to make a wedding dress for someone's special day.
I have been thinking a lot about the possibility of designing and making dresses for weddings.
I love making dresses but I sometimes find my designs a bit too fancy for every-day wear.
I think bridal dresses would be a perfect way for me to express the designs I love, without the risk of someone looking over-dressed.
Your wedding day is the one day you can't be over-dressed, right?
All these images are from a local (in France) second hand shop, as I always like to use recuperated materials in my clothing for many reasons.
I fell in love with the sheer embroidered fabric in the first images and told myself to buy it if it was still there next time I visited the shop!
It was, so now I have it.
I even brought it to America with me even though I have no concrete plans for it.
There are so many beautiful pre-owned fabrics for me to re-purpose into clothing that sometimes I have to say no to many or I'd end up seriously in debt.

If anyone has suggestions for good places to find second hand fabric in the USA, I'd love to hear them.
I will be checking out Goodwill soon.

Thanks for reading me,

Friday, 18 March 2016

Pink and green

I recently made two new pieces of clothing which I'm going to post in one because I think they look really great together.
We also happened to go up to the lake near where I live which has a pretty great backdrop so that's a plus.
So here you go.

Weirdly I feel like pink and green go really well together in this specific case.
I just love them!
And for some strange reason I don't know, I really like this accidental picture:

For the shirt, I was given a few patterns by a friend, including the absolutely gorgeous Lottie blouse by Simple Sew Patterns.
I am so pleased with how it turned out.
The instructions were easy to understand (though I noticed a typo, lol) and I made it very quickly.
Though the smallest size in the pattern was a UK 8, and I am a bit smaller, I cut it to an 8 but used a wider seam allowance than recommended and it ended up a pretty great fit!

I really recommend this pattern for anyone to try out!

As for the skirt, it is a simple half-circle skirt made from green velvet (no pattern).
I made it, really, just to practice working with velvet, round hems and inserting zips, but it ended up being my favourite skirt that I own!

Thanks for reading me,
Milla x

Thursday, 10 March 2016


I am leaving for the USA tomorrow.
I thought for the occasion I'd finally post these pictures I've had ready for a while.
A sweet woman, who is my boyfriend's sister, was incredibly kind to me.
She bought many ribbons and clips and even a glue gun in order for me to make some cute hair clip bows for children (or adults if they feel like it?).

She also gave me some beautiful fabric with which I was to make a skirt for her daughter.

Unfortunately I had left America before getting it done, and with shipping being so expensive from France to the USA, it has been waiting to return there with me ever since.

Thanks for reading me
And thank you to Stacy and everyone who has been incredibly kind and supportive to me.
Milla x