Sunday, September 28, 2014

Steel Blue Strathcona Henley

Another year and another wedding anniversary gift for Mark, my husband, and this year the modern gift guide suggested textiles, fur.

I did for a fleeting second think of making Mark a woven shirt, but once I spied this wool knit (that had been in my stash since 2010) and remembering that I had also purchased the Parkland Selection from Thread Theory, the Strathcona Henley was the winner.

Based on Mark's measurements I cut out a medium.

It wasn't until I sat down and started to sew this, that I realised I was doing my first buttonhole placket on a knit! Thankfully the instructions for this were quite good and using a lot of basting I was very pleased with how it turned out.

There was no way I was going to  do the buttonholes, so I again purchased them from Mick at Quick Buttonhole Service at Alexandria.  I couldn't believe my luck in finding the perfect buttons at Spotlight.

The Strathcona Henley is a "modern", "slim-fitting" t-shirt and I chose to make it with long sleeves seeing the fabric was a wool mix. I did have a bit of concern when I had all but the hem done that it was going to be too big, however when I measured it against one of his current t-shirts it was a slightly slimmer fit but the length seemed a bit long.  I did cut off 4.5cm from the length and that left me with a 2cm hem.

It looks like it's a winner, it has had a few outings already!

2014 Stash Out: 29.35 m
2014 Stash In: 47.25 m

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

24 Garments = 377 outfits!

I am a visual person, and found this amazing to see.

From this 24 piece collection,

I can have 377 different combinations!

The following shows the 13 tops with the 6 bottoms and 1 of the cardigans, I haven't shown the same combinations without a cardigan or even with the other waterfall cardigan or the Marfy jacket!

This group alone lets you have 312 outfits!

Pants from Step 1.

Jeans from Step 4.

Navy Marfy skirt from Step 7.

Brown suede skirt from Step 9.

Brown denim skirt from Step 11.

Navy linen skirt from Step 17.

Now for the Jalie accent cardigan from Step 15.

I would only wear this with the plain tops, 10 in total, so with the 6 bottoms you have another 60 different looking outfits.

The dress from Step 15 goes with all the cardigans and the Marfy jacket, another 5 outfits!

I have realised that if the 3 patterned tops were plain it would add another 18 outfits.

I'm not sure that I wouldn't get tired of the tops, but this is where your accessories do play a major part in changing the look, especially when sitting at a desk.

Now back to some regular sewing, so I can see if I can make this work!

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Building a Wardrobe from Scratch - The Final Pieces

I have surprised myself thinking that I still needed to do a lot of work on my accessories, it was lovely to see that so far I have covered all sets so far!

Step 14  for me is all about staying at home or clothes that we can be active in, walk the dog, or lounge around the house but still confident to answer the door!

So I have added my Jalie Yoga Pants, the Seamster Hoodie as well as my navy shorts.  The lemon singlet is one I have seen and I would love one, as this would be a perfect addition to my wardrobe.

Step 15 is a versatile dress, an accent cardigan and shoes.  I love my Navy dress with the pickstitching but I think it will only last for another summer, so I have been taking my time and making a navy linen shirtmaker and the cardigan I would pair this with are both near completion.

I've added a pair of Diana Ferrari Greneya sandles which I need to purchase soon.

Step 16 is evaluating and balancing the neutrals.  With all the garments I have been adding to my wardrobe Janice has suggested that we make sure we have a "Core of Four" (two tops and two bottoms that will make 4 outfits) in each neutral.  You can see below that I don't have any navy tops!

I have chosen a long sleeved navy t-shirt and a sleeveless navy top , I don't own either of these so they are now on the sewing list.

Step 17 we are just about at the end of the 24 piece wardrobe and may need to add some finishing touches. Note that Janice has deliberately kept out leisurewear and outerwear from this current collection and the focus is all on "street wear".

Looking at my collection below I am missing another casual skirt and think another coral casual top would round it out nicely.

I have just finished the navy skirt, it is another version of Vogue 1247 and will be revealed soon.  The fabric for the coral top is also in the stash.

Step 18 is the last review of our wardrobe , comparing it to Janice's Common Wardrobe and also "Whatever is Clean".  Here we can add a "denim shirt" and two basic tops, but looking at my collection below I am very happy with where I am at.

"Street Wear"


Here is what I need to physically add to my wardrobe, a few of the pieces are very close to being finished, and some can wait until Autumn. 

If you take all combinations of outfits using the "street wear" items, I have calculated that I have 377 combinations!!! Now I need to see this.

Friday, September 12, 2014

#OWOP - One Week One Pattern - Self Drafted TNT Skirt

I have again signed up for the One Week, One Pattern challenge hosted by Jane where we wear a single pattern for every day of the week.

Before I committed I did a count of what patterns I had used the most of, and it was a close call between KS 3740 and my Self Drafted TNT Skirt.  I did contemplate using both patterns for the week, but bad laundry management didn't allow this to happen.

So this is how I have worn my Self Drafted TNT Skirts for the week.

Green jean styled skirt:
I love this skirt but seriously need to get some more tops to go with, especially for summer!

Brown linen skirt (pre blog):
As you can probably tell from the pictures, this skirt is on its last legs, you only have to look at it and it creases and has been moved from the work wardrobe to weekend wear.

Navy wool skirt:
This skirt has turned into a workhorse over winter and I look forward to getting more wear out of it during the warmer months.

Brown wool skirt:
I am in two minds about this skirt, it is a lovely fine wool, but I feel it needs a bit more structure for a skirt.  I plan on making another at some point as I still have quite a bit of this left and plan on underlining it to see if that will give it the look I am after.

Brown suede skirt:
You can't crease this skirt, it is brilliant - just wash and wear and I can roll it up into a tiny ball in a suitcase and you are none the wiser!

The navy wool skirt and brown linen skirts both got repeated to finish off the week.

This pattern has been a real workhorse for me, it has been used to make skirts, check the fit other skirts (Vogue 1247) and even dresses to make sure the hip curve or lack of is the same!

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Building a Wardbrobe from Scratch - Part 2

It was interesting to note that at the end of Step 7 where I left you last that if all the garments were made I could have at least 2 weeks of outfits without repeating a combination!

Step 8 is adding 2 tops and a necklace and this is where we can bring in a patterned fabric. Again these items are already in my wardrobe, my yellow peplum top, the Blue and Gold swirls t-shirt and the navy necklace

Step 9 adds three pieces, a skirt, top and shoes, and these three pieces already live in my wardrobe.  My suede skirt, the navy/gold/brown silk blouse and another pair of Circa Joan & David sling-backs in brown.

Step 10 is the addition of a casual jacket, t-shirt or blouse and casual shoes. This time I have added my Minoru jacket, blue/brown/green boatneck top and I will have to go shopping for some casual brown shoes.

Step 11 is where we add a complete outfit for balance and accent, so I have chosen to add my Brown denim skirt and brown waterfall cardigan that are already in my wardrobe.  The coral blouse is one to make and I have just ordered the perfect fabric.

Step 12 is adding a winter coat, boots and a scarf.  Can aubergine be a colour of coral?  I have the perfect fabric for a winter coat and do have the pattern ready to go!  I know I don't want a brown or navy coat but coral or yellow is taking a bit too wild for me.  I have the boots but will also need to knit the scarf/cowl.

Step 13 is all about more accessories and Janice does suggest a bracelet and brooch. I am not a bracelet person, I wear the gold chain bracelet that was in the first round of accessories all the time.  I do have some brooches and do dig them out every now and again.  I could also do with an evening bag so I have included this in this round.  The necklaces and earrings are already in my jewellery box - Smokey quartz necklace and earrings  , Brown beads with some double spiral chain maille, Blue,Grey rope and earrings

There are a lot of garments and accessories in the group above and there are still a few steps left to add.  I have been surprised at how much of this is in my wardrobe already.

Following Alexandra's idea I have also decided to keep a separate list of garments that I need to sew, knit or purchase and this is what it looks like so far.

Has anyone else got this far along with their planning, please share in the comments.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Building a Wardrobe from Scratch

I have been a follower of Janice's over at the Vivienne Files for years and a couple of months ago she started a series about how to build a wardrobe Starting from Scratch.

When I saw Alexandra's plan I thought it would be interesting to see how it would work in my wardrobe.

Now I do have quite a co-ordinated wardrobe as it is, but there are some major holes and I thought I would use this to see what garments I need for the coming spring/summer.

First up I had to choose my colour scheme, the two neutrals were pretty much a given, milk chocolate brown and navy.  Next was the two accents, well yellow is a colour I love and for the second one I have chosen salmon.   Then Janice suggests a variation of white so that is my cream that will function well as a blouse or t-shirt.

Most wardrobe planners tell you start with a suit, however Janice has started with a pair of dressy pants which takes you on a completely different journey.

Pants are the one garment that I am still working on, and later this month I will be attending Louise Sparrow's "Louise Pants that Fit - Create your own Pattern" at the Australian Sewing Guild Convention.

Step 2 is comfortable pair of shoes, it has to be my Circa Joan & David Calalilly Pumps, I just love these shoes!

Step 3 is adding a cardigan/jacket or t-shirt or blouse, in the same neutral.

Thankfully I have some lovely dark brown wool knit to make up a twin set for this Step.

Step 4 is adding jeans and a blouse!

I have both these pieces in my wardrobe already, the cream boat neck t-shirt and brown denim jeans.

Step 5 is all about accessories, this is an area that I know I need to work on, although I have managed to accomplish Round 1 Accessories with my leather bag that is used every day, silk scarf purchased in China, my everyday watch and earrings.

Step 6 you add another scraf and two accent tops, here come the yellow and salmon tops.  I'm not sure why but I have realised that I haven't worn many scraves this winter, but I would love to find one that incorporates my colours.

I couldn't remove the necklaces from my pictures, so please ignore this round.

Step 7 is where we bring in the 2nd neutral with a jacket/cardigan or skirt/pants and some more shoes.  This time I have chosen my Navy Marfy Skirt and do plan on making the Marfy jacket to go with it.  The shoes are a pair of Circa Joan & David slingbacks in navy that are also in my wardrobe.

This is good time to assess if I am heading in the right direction with my garment and colour choices.

I'm not in love with the style of the brown top, but I know that I can make it my way so I just need to ignore the silhouette at the moment.  I didn't do the grouping with the brown jeans but you can see how easily they would fit in.

Have you been following Janice's posts and looking at your own wardrobe, I would love to know if you are and how you are going.

This about a third of the way through so I will be back soon with some more steps.