Monday, March 27, 2006

"Cashmere Dreams"

I have been away for most of the weekend visiting colleges with my middle DD. She will have decisions to make about her future soon and I have done my part! Along with catching a very nasty cold but on to sewing....

I am home from work today nursing this very nasty cold and since I have not sewn for several days now, I am suffering from withdrawal. My wool/cashmere fabric is on the cutting table with several pieces pinned to it to be cut out but the temperatures predicted by the weatherman is playing with my mind. Also when I look out my kitchen window, the tree facing the parking lot is starting to bud and the surrounding trees have a green hue to them. Spring is coming!

So I grabbed my notebook to check out my Spring Sewing List that had been compiled earlier to see if maybe I shouldn't unpin the wool/cashmere and fold it away for fall. But after going over my list, I realize that the pieces I have picked to work on will be fine for the beginning of spring. Even if I only wear them once before it gets really warm, they will make great early fall pieces. So I am going to continue on and finish these pieces.

Now that I have a digital camera and will be taking pictures of my finished garments in real time, I have named all of my "collections" for spring/summer. Naming them has also made it really easy to keep track of my projects. The wool/cashmere pieces are being called, "Cashmere Dreams" and will consist of:

- A jacket from Butterick 3978

- My TNT short flare skirt. I have retraced the pattern and added just a little more flare to the skirt panels so the bottom hem will be a little more flippy.

- a pair of lined straight leg pants from my TNT pattern

I will use the emmaonesock circle rayon/lycra blend fabric for a t-shirt. I debated whether or not to make a tank but decided for the time of the year that I want to wear these pieces that a t-shirt will provide more coverage & warmth.

I know many of you think of this as mini-SWAP sewing but since reading a book by Judith Rasband, I have always tried to capsule sew. By sewing in SWAPs or capsules, you end up with mix and match pieces that are wearable with each other and hopefully other things in your closet. Over the years I have found that I usually purchase the same type of colors in both RTW as well as fabrics. So I sew in color families. Mix and match pieces also work for my lifestyle. I don't have much time in the morning so I need for my clothing to come out of my closet in pieces that work together without much thought. And since I sew 99% of my work wardrobe, I solve this issue in the planning phase.

So I am off to take a dose of cough medicine so that I don't cough all over my fabric and then I will pin and cut out my pieces. Hopefully, I will have time later this week to work on the construction of these garments.

But first, can I ask a question or two? How much planning do you put into your sewing? Do you make sure that the piece or pieces that you are considering making work with the other pieces in your wardrobe? Or do you have a closet full of orphans?


  1. Well since I'm still a beginner I am still left with orphans! With time I hope to be able to do more sewing with a plan.
    Hope you are on the mend and feeling better. Looking forward to seeing your new spring pieces. Good luck to your DD.

  2. Carolyn, we just need to get together, drink coffee, and play with our stashes!

    Doing the SWAP contest three times now has really done a permanent alteration on my fabric purchasing; I very, very rarely buy a piece of fabric that I like unless I know it will work with either garments I already own or with another fabric or two. However, it is a rare piece of fabric that 1) is in colors that are complimentary to me and 2) does not match SOMETHING in the wardrobe or stash! :P Actually, I can remember buying two pieces of poly doubleknit when I was a sophomore in high school (poly doubleknit = mid 70's) for 1.50/yd, in solid navy and navy and white houndstooth, and making a jacket and skirt from the solid, pants and a skirt from the houndstooth, and a reversible vest that was solid on one side and houndstooth on the other. So maybe it comes more naturally than I realized.

  3. I think that I'm running an orphanage! Actually, I have a pretty casual wardrobe - mostly jeans, corduroys, and track\yoga pants in the winter and shorts, skorts\skirts, and capris in the summer. I mix and match tops with those. I know that my sewing is pretty much 'flighty' - I wind up sewing things (and fabrics) that catch my eye. I think that I shop like that sometimes too!

    I've been doing lots of reading lately on SWAPs and would really like to try a casual (SAHM) type wardrobe this fall.

    I hope you're feeling better soon!

  4. Hi Carolyn,

    Well I nearly always buy and sew to match something else. If what I love does not match, then I get another piece to match. At the moment nearly all my wardbrobe is sea green/teal and raspberry. Today I bought some green denim with flocked black velvet flowers on it. It matches the store bought skirt I had on while fabric browsing! I don't need it, but hey, it matches :)

  5. I haven't sewn very many wardrobe pieces. Most of my work has been special occasion pieces such as formals, wedding dresses, costumes, that sort of thing. But lately, I've started to think more about sewing more for myself and I'm interested in planning pieces that coordinate with what I already have.

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