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?

Quilted Jade Skirt for SV Design Crew

Jade Skirt v.2

I made up a modified version of the Jade Skirt from Paprika Patterns using a wonderful quilted double knit from Sew Vagabond. I recently joined the SV Design Crew**.

Jade Skirt styling

The Pattern: I’ve made the Jade skirt before here, so I knew it would be perfect for making a mini skirt to show off the quilted texture of this fabric. To skip the folded front, I used the front lining pattern piece as my shell instead. I also lengthened the front and back pattern pieces to 16in. The Jade’s waistband is one curved piece, so to conserve fabric and keep the textured pattern of the fabric a little more lined up, I pieced the waistband instead.

I made up a size 5 again, lengthening it as I said above and then, because the fabric has a good stretch, I end up using a 3/4in seam allowance on the sides instead of 1/2in given in the pattern.

I’ve done an exposed zipper before with only a so-so result, so I wanted to try one again to give the skirt that extra something and to get a better hold on the technique. I struggled getting the zipper in without having little tucks and wrinkles at the bottom corners. I finally got it after a few tries and changing the order of construction. Now I know what I need to do to nail it next time.

Jade Skirt styling

The Fabric: A natural fiber quilted double knit in navy from Sew Vagabond Shop (available late summer) for the shell and a navy jersey knit from my stash for the lining. I’ve actually used a similar fabric before, but wow what a difference between the two. My Jasper dress made in a quilted jaquard made it into my February Fail post because the fabric was just an absolute disaster, it has that slick polyester feel and is snagging and pilling like crazy. This navy quilted knit is holding up so well after washing and even after having to rework that exposed zipper many times and a little seam ripping too.

Fabric comparison

I’ve styled my new Jade with a rtw blouse and my Burda 7140 faux leather jacket, with my Melly Sews Peasant Blouse, and a rtw plain white tee.

Jade styling collage

Making a modified Jade skirt should take you about 3.25 hours, assuming you get an exposed zipper in on the first try. In a size 5 with a pieced waistband I used 1/2yard of the quilted knit and 1/2yard of the jersey knit lining.

Total Cost: $3   Pattern: stash   Fabric shell: Free**  Lining: $1   Notions: $2

** When I make a qualifying purchase as part of the SV Design Crew, I receive 2 free yards of fabric to make what ever I want and Sew Vagabond Shop gets to use my pictures to show off their fabrics.