Seasonal Sew Wardrobe: Deep Stash sewing challenge

I completed the latest Seasonal Sew Wardrobe (SSW) challenge from the Sew Alongs and Sewing Contests a few weeks ago. The latest challenge was to make up eight items using patterns from deep in your stash. Perfect for me, since it’s been a goal of mine to sew up my stash patterns anyway.

My original plan was to make up a spring capsule using Simplicity 1430 Dress in cotton batiste, ALENA Top in white on white stripe jersey, Cozy Comfy pjs in blue madras plaid, Capitol Hill Dress in sequined black jersey, NICKI capris in black DBP, Gypsy dress in wax print cotton or rayon challis, and figure out two more as I went along.

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My final mini capsule (left to right, top to bottom) contains the Onyx Shirt, ALENA tee, Comfy Cozy pajamas, Ally Skirt, NICKI capris, Comfy Cozy pajamas, Capitol Hill Dress, Gypsy Dress, and my modern boatneck.

SSW DS collage

I have seperates that work with each other, pajamas that are not an after thought, a versatile summer dress, and an event worthy dress.

It has been a long time coming, but I’m starting to feel like I have a pretty cohesive wardrobe to work with. The challenges in the Sew Alongs and Sewing Contests group aren’t about building a capsule wardrobe necessarily; but they are a great at getting me to focus on my sewing goals, one of which is building outfits.

Would you like to participate in the next sewing challenge? The next challenge starts soon. Hop on over, join the group, and get sewing with us.

Destination Pants… a mini capsule for fall

I joined the Sew Alongs and Sewing Contests group in the last Seasonal Sew Wardrobe (SSW) challenge with “Destination” as the theme. Making & fitting pants was my major sewing goal (destination) for 2016, so I built my mini capsule around jeans and pants.

My original plan with outfits going horizontally:

SSW Destination suduko

Liana Stretch Jeans, Megan Blouse, Santiago Jacket; Fold Over Clutch, Birkin Fares, Zircon Sweater; SVEA Pants & Mechelen Sweater

My final mini capsule:

SSWD Pants complete collage

Links to my completed pieces: Birkin Flares,  Ocean Waved Clutch and Zircon Sweater; Liana Stretch Jeans, and Onyx Shirt; Alizia Top, SVEA Pants, and Matilda leggings.

I still need a lot of practice planning and sewing whole outfits, so I fully plan on continuing to participate in the SSW challenges.

Would you like to join in? The next challenge starts soon. Hop on over, join the group, and get sewing with us.

Sarah Top and Dress – Pattern Review

On the Cutting Floor is putting out some really interesting patterns, with unique details that take them above and beyond the many basics you see out there in the Indie pattern world. I have many of them on my list to make.

I started with the Sarah Top and Dress Pattern** Those origami-like folds, oh yeah, so very cool. I had the perfect color ponte in my stash to fit into my Core Wardrobe too.

The pattern comes with lots of options, 24 all together, so you need to read the “How to Print” instructions to get the pattern pieces you need.

Sarah Top and Dress technical drawing

The easily understandable instructions walk you through how to complete the many options and they’re organized so there’s no confusion. Sewing the pleated panel was a breeze because of good markings and clear instructions.

Item of note: The curve from waistline to hip is not a gentle one. This is great for pear shapes like me, but if you’re a rectangle or inverted triangle shape you might want to check that.

My alterations, which I have to do to most patterns. A drop shoulder adjustment of 3/8in. Shortened 3in at hem line, I had to eliminate the bottom pleat to make it look right. Shortened the sleeve by 3in to make it a length I like.

Next time, I’ll use a binding on the neckline instead of folding over and topstitching. I prefer a binding or facing.

I had a few fit issues with the test version of the pattern. (I don’t see adjustments for these in the final version)

1. I got a lot of gaping at the center front neckline of my muslin (not shown). I ended up removing two 1/2in wedges from the neckline to compensate.

2. I found the neckline sat high up on my neck at the shoulder line. I ended up removing 1in here.

3. I found the front piece 1/2in narrower than the back piece in the same size. I used a size 10 front piece and size 8 back piece in my final version.

The fabric: One yard of a nice ponte de roma from Finch Fabrics. (sold out)

The Pattern: Sarah Top and Dress in size 8/10. Pleated front, short sleeve options.

The Sarah Top & Dress is 50% off until Friday to celebrate the pattern release, so hop on that now.

The pleated front, short sleeve version of the Sarah Top should take you about 1.5 hours to complete.

Total Cost: $2          Fabric $2           Pattern $ 0- Free as a pattern tester

 

**Affiliate link, meaning your purchase provides me a modicum of compensation to fuel my hobby.

V Slit Blouse Simplicity 1430

Today I’m going to share just a little bit about the V front blouse that I included in the spring capsule wardrobe I worked on for the Sew Alongs And Sewing Contests fb group.

Me Made May really showed that I was missing some of the Core Colors from my wardrobe, so I immediately started making Simplicity 1430 View B in a red lawn from Fabric Mart and crossed off a long waiting project.

V Slit blouse

This cute number went together pretty easily until I hit the neck band technique. My gut instinct was to apply a bias binding, but I decided to follow the pattern. Uh-Oh. The instructions have you apply a pieced neckband, a neckband facing, and stitch through all the layers. That adds up to seven layers at the shoulder seams. The result, even in a lightweight lawn, was a  thick rope-like neckband.

V Slit blouse 1

I hated this neckband, so I ripped it off and added a 1in facing instead. I’m so much happier with the fit and feel. To keep that cut out look, you could use a bias binding.

V Slit blouse

V Slit blouse

The pattern: Simplicity 1430 View B, size 12. Stupid neckband removed and replaced with a facing, closure at CB eliminated and 1/2in added to hip.

V Slit blouse

The fabric: 100% cotton lawn from Fabric Mart, long sold out.

V Slit blouse

 

Notes: Choose an easier option for the neck binding and skip the back closure if you want to.

Simplicty 1430 view B should take you about 3.5 hours to make. A size 12 used 1yd of fabric.

Total cost: $3.50         Fabric $3.50             Pattern $0-stash

A small spring capsule

If you’ve been following my blog, you will have heard me mention my Core Wardrobe efforts. My approach has been to add pieces here and there to build up a Core of basics that can work with most everything else. I’d say the results are O.K.

It’s true that I do have a pretty good selection of basics, but I still look at my closet and feel like I have nothing to wear. Me Made May was useful for getting a little practice in making outfits and gleaning some helpful conclusions, but another project that I’ve been working on the last few months really has been the best for getting me to the next step of making a cohesive wardrobe.

The Sew Alongs and Sewing Contests group started a Seasonal Sew Wardrobe contest.  The goal was to make 8 pieces of my choosing, on a theme of my choosing, over a four month time frame. I love that kind of flexibility. (The group has started a new Seasonal Sew Wardrobe: Sleepwear Edition challenge. Hop on over, join the group, and get sewing with us)

My theme: Sew a lot of things and hope they match!

I think I got close to making a mini wardrobe of items that go together; and for the first time trying the idea, I’m satisfied with my results.

My mini wardrobe: Marigold Blouse, Georgia Top, Zamora Blouse, Marigold Dress, Jade skirt, S1430 blouse, Ally Skirt, Union St Tee, and Goldenrod Skirt.

SSW1 collage

I really like the approach of making a set of pieces that are made to go together and definitely want to do it again. I’m getting a better handle on the colors I want to wear and nailing down my personal style, so hopefully the next mini wardrobes I put together will have a cohesive connection to each other.

How do you find success making your wardrobe?

Wardrobe Workup after Me Made May

 

Though a lot of drudgery is involved in taking pics of yourself every day, Me Made May was a good and useful exercise. I got a little bit of practice putting together outfits and put together thoughts on how to make some improvements.

Actions:

I’ve added things to the sewing list and alterations list. More importantly, I’m going to refocus on building outfits instead of the one-off pieces that have led me to a closet of tops and no pants.

I’ve already made another S2451 skirt and a red blouse (unblogged) to fill wardrobe holes. Trousers and pants will wait until fall.

Union St Tee w/ S2451 skirt

 

While spending time evaluating my existing wardrobe this month, I also spent a little time focusing on how I’m spending my sewing/blogging time.

There have been several times over the last few months that sewing has been more stressful because of deadlines than it has been fun. I’m refocusing on how much I can realistically accomplish, so I can maintain a balance that works for me.

Moving on with Me Made May week four

Wearing handmade items every day this month for Me Made May is moving into unexciting repeat land, so I’m glad to be wrapping it up this week.

What I wore last week…

Sunday: Pin Peg Mini paired with a purple tee, after trying a few things first.

May 22 collage

Monday: Lindy Petal skirt and Kirsten Kimono tee.

May 23.2

Tuesday: Old tee and jeans for major yardwork day. No pics-your welcome.

Wednesday: Marigold Dress for dinner with the boys.

May 25.1

Thursday: Old tee and jeans for another yardwork day.

Friday: Union St Tee and rtw jeans

May 27

 

Week 4’s takeaways are…

  • Pin Peg skirt added to the list of items to alter. I’d like to take it in at the waist for a better fit. My version is reversible and I’m also considering taking it all apart and making two skirts out of the one.

So, there are a couple days left in May, but I’m done with Me Made May for this year. I’ll have a wrap up post in a few days to put it all together.