Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Study Your Closet, Consider Your Needs, Define Your Skills, The Wardrobe Project, 2016

Intimate and sleepwear category. This pattern is from the late 1980's or early 1990's. Remember shoulder pads? Do not scream.....I have small shoulders. (that is the only small part, well, and earlobes:) I like undergarments or under-pinnings but I cannot stand to be trussed up like a turkey with all the new shapewear. As a result, I make camisoles and slips. This pattern will be adjusted, shoulder pad wise, to reduce the line a bit but I find a little bit of structure at the shoulder line reduces my torso proportions.  We will be talking about that soon.   

For as long as I can remember I have divided my wardrobe needs in categories. Of course, the lines sometimes blur and I can wear something casual with something a little more dressy and that creates the versatility that I want.

The categories that work for me:
  1. Intimate wear, sleep wear, lounge wear.
  2. At-home casual.
  3. Public casual.
  4. Dressy.
  5. Special Occasion.
  6. Home Dec, quilting and Craft items. 
-Let me expound. In group number 1,  I make camisoles, slips, under pants. I do not make bra's. I like to wear the cami under sheer blouses or under sweaters and shirts when the weather is cool. That way I am warm but not overly bundled.

This is my go-to At Home Casual type of pattern. I am going to work this up using exposed, serged seams of some sort. I haven't made this one yet, so I will make a muslin of sorts using some knit fabric to finish as pyjamas! I make wearable muslins! 
 -In the second group, At-home casual, I prefer knit pull-on pants, with pockets, t-shirts with long and short sleeves, a light-weight knit fabric cardigan or button down shirt, long or short sleeves. I include my aprons in this group. I wear aprons every day, all the time. My kitchen aprons are changed daily or more often if I am particularly sloppy! My sewing aprons I wear for days at a time. I like the pockets when I sew and the apron protects my clothes from thread snips. Those little pieces stick to knit clothes like velcro on silk!
This top is Public Casual for me. Construction on this requires a bit more work so not an under-the-apron-at-home project. I saw a presenter on It's So Easy  (PBS) the other day wearing this top embellished with serger ruffles.

-Public casual is a defined category because I will not go out in public looking like I just finished scrubbing the kitchen floor. I will not wear stretched out and faded T shirts that would be better suited for window cleaning in public. I have seen some dreadful looks that should have embarrassed the wearer. One should not see a poor fitting bra through a stretched out see through t-shirt. I have very strong feelings about this. If you do not agree that is fine. Your clothes, your choice. In this group I include tailored jeans, tailored trousers and some pull-on pants. This group includes structured t-shirts, sweaters, cardigans, blouses and shirts, an occasional turtle neck with vest. I include casual jackets and blazers here as well. I include coats and jackets in this group as well.
I like the fabrication here. I have made this in a mid-weight solid ponte and now I am scanning the aisles for something with a little design, a dressier style. I am thinking about something in blacks to wear with velvet pants.

-When I must dress up, dinner at a special restaurant for example, I will break down and wear a tailored dress or skirt with a jeweled or embroidered top. Not much of a sparkly girl, the decorations are very modest.
I tend to over-think....everything. I unearthed my trusty Vogue Sewing Handbook, circa1980. The book is well used. Dust cover long gone, coffee stains here and there, sadly it is a First Edition. Value on the secondary market...not so good:)

-Special occasion is just that. A wedding or Christmas  corporate party at a fancy hotel will entice me to add something special. Those occasions are increasingly rare. I remember not long ago that I needed at least two special occasion outfits a year.  I would make and remake, design and alter every year to make something that would suit the occasion. Now I maintain a very basic combination of pieces that are versatile and suitable.
-Home Dec. I have to say that I go in spurts with this kind of work. I will sew up a storm for a month or so then nothing for months. That includes curtains, place mats and table runners, decorative pillows, special pillow cases and trimming towels etc. Quilting is actually in this genre but quilting is another subject entirely and I don't want to include it here.
  • I generalize t-shirts. I should clarify that this include all knit fabric tops. 
At this point I survey my needs for the year. The project will help me coordinate the pieces that will carry over from season to season. In category one I already know that I need sleep wear. Not that I want sleep wear I NEED to make some. While these are not really part of the core wardrobe I will use some new techniques making these that I plan to employ in the core pieces. For example, plackets. It has been a while since I made a nice smooth v at the bottom of a placket and I need to work on this. A PJ top is the perfect place to work on this.  I also want to work on ruching. Keeping the gathers even is the goal there.

I want to work on using the cover stitch on my new Ovation. That will fall under the top/t-shirt category. I want to apply elastic with the serger as well. 

So lots to work on in the coming year. Remember to use your journal to break down your full wardrobe needs and how the core piece that you make will work into the whole project. Put on those thinking caps Sewists, this is the time to dream a bit, plan a lot and work on those skills. 

Janice Riggs talks about style and change. 

****Posting may be a bit spotty until after Christmas. Like you, I am busy, behind in my projects and need the extra time to cook, visit friends and family and just relax.  


ninon said...

Corinne, Did you get my email and link, I am really having fun with this, thank you so much for the inspiration and group leadership. My baby blog is called

celkalee said...

I have a mountain of email and I am far behind, I do apologize! I just visited your new blog and it is so nice. You are already a pro. I am looking forward to seeing your work, the items you have planned will be great!

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