Sewing A Seasonal Capsule Wardrobe
Perhaps I Am Mad
A capsule wardrobe is basically a few key pieces in a wardrobe that you can combine in countless ways to create a lot of outfits.
The typical thing that I hear about creating your capsule wardrobe is the 3 x 3 wardrobe.
The 3 X 3 collection typically advocates creating six to nine pieces for your capsule wardrobe.
There is also Project 333, which is about wearing only thirty-three pieces for three months, but I am not going to be looking into that at the moment.
I have been researching exactly what to make to create my wardrobe. The best thing I can come up with for me is creating three bottoms, three tops, and three layering pieces.
My problem comes in with the fact that I am supposed to be sewing these pieces, but my normal layering pieces are knitted…and after this year, hopefully, crocheted.
I have chosen at least one top pattern and one pants pattern. But what should I do for the other three pieces? If I can fight my way through all the layered markings on my other set of patterns, I am thinking of whipping up another two shirts and a skirt. I have thought about making two skirts and a top, but I would rather have more tops. I can, however, not sew up three pairs of pants, but make two pairs of pants and two skirts, with five tops. And I think this is the way to go.
I shall put my knitting and crocheting as another task to be made while I am involved with my sewing project.
Now, I do have a stash of fabric, but I do not think I have a lot of fabric that I would call appropriate for building up a wardrobe.
I do have some lovely sheets and duvet covers to make wearable muslins though. I have planned that at least.
So, as this is February, I am planning my spring capsule wardrobe, so I need to think about colors and fabrics. Cottons and linens, I am thinking.
But colors? I am still a Goth at heart. I adore lovely blacks and greys. I would also like to incorporate some patterns. My son is insistent that we add more Wednesday Addams (from the Netflix show Wednesday). He wants black and white checks and stripes and the like. I told him that for him I would do that. So apparently this means I shall be mocking up two separate capsule wardrobes.
For his wardrobe, we are going with whatever his little heart desires when we get to the fabric store because, honestly, I want him to wear the clothes he wants to be made and the best way to accomplish that is to let him pick out the patterns, the fabrics, the threads…and to let him hang out while I am cutting and sewing.
I am using Ahead Of The Curve by Jenny Rushmore. I also have The Act Of Sewing by Sonya Philip—which requires I cut patterns out in the midst of too many other lines and my brain hurts thinking about it…even though I love the shapes of her clothes.
I have other books, as well as actual patterns, from other companies, but I won’t bore you with those details until I pull them out to make use of them.
On a typical day, I prefer oddly patterned pants and a plain shirt. Ok, I typically wear leggings and t-shirts, but I have been working to move out of that arena to increase my own sense of self-worth and self-care.
Thanks to my mother, I have a stash of elastic and thread, and scissors. Lovely lovely scissors. I say this after fighting for years to ensure no one touches my fabric scissors and that they are only used for fabric. I shall have to dig through my fabric stash—and yes, I still have the Halloween fabric we bought but haven’t used yet. It just does not seem that this is what I need to use for me, since I will be using it for my son, for my spring capsule wardrobe.
I am also planning to add to this wardrobe using handmade knit or crocheted pieces. I am planning a heavier cardigan, a lighter cardigan, and at least a vest. I am also going to need to knit and crochet as many cowls and neckerchiefs as I can because I need to keep my darn throat covered as much as possible, no matter what the weather is.
What is so interesting is that I have been sitting here and pondering not only a spring capsule wardrobe but a summer and autumn wardrobe as well. I have not given much thought to winter yet because…honestly…I have been researching fabrics and the like, much as I have done with yarns throughout my knitting career, and I have too many ideas in my head to contemplate winter yet.
The funny thing is I don’t think my color palette will change much. I do prefer neutrals overall.
All joking aside, lighter greys, pale browns and camels, ivories, and off-whites for a spring color palette. I have no idea what patterns I will be looking for because, much like my son, I will see what I am drawn to when we get to the fabric store/s.
Summer is going to be the more challenging color palette to decide upon.
I do love colors, but I don’t always appreciate wearing colors.
Autumn will be all too easy for me because autumn is my usual color palette anyway.
But Autumn comes with its own difficulties because…I have now a stash of Halloween-patterned fabric. I do mean to make a capsule wardrobe strictly for Halloween.
Which is where I began thinking…what other holidays would I enjoy having a capsule wardrobe made for?
Halloween. Christmas. Our anniversary—or at least the week thereof. Valentine’s Day? My birthday—or at least the week thereof.
Now, for Halloween and for Christmas, we usually have things we wear all month … well, my son starts wearing Christmas stuff in November, so there are two months to wear things for Christmas.
But other holidays? I am more inclined to make a single outfit, say, for our anniversary, my birthday, Mother’s Day, Valentine’s Day, and so forth.
What do you think?
After all of that, we come back to this: I am planning to sew a spring capsule wardrobe. Two pairs of pants. Two skirts. Five tops. Hopefully, by the end of Spring, I will have knitted or crocheted two different yarn-weight cardigans and a vest.
The initial plan is to use the pattern for pants and shirt patterns from Ahead Of The Curve.
I am also planning to make several different headbands to go along with things as well, but Pinterest is full of patterns to sew those up, if you are interested.
As much as I tell you that I wear strangely patterned leggings and a plain T-shirt most days, what I am planning is plain trousers, at least at first, and patterned tops. To be honest, I may make a plain skirt and a patterned skirt. No, I do not have an actual pattern chosen for the skirts yet. I have an idea of what I want to do, but we’ll have to see how things turn out.
Now, there is my what.
But why? Why would I want to make my own clothes?
Honestly, it all began a hundred years ago when I was a little kid. My mother made me clothes. It wasn’t that she made my entire wardrobe, but I do remember wearing with pride a beautiful blouse, with front pockets, and a bit if lace. I loved that blouse. My mother also sewed me up a whole wardrobe for a baby doll that she gave me, doll and clothes, for Christmas one year—and that to date is my favorite Christmas gift ever as a child.
I have been fascinated with sewing ever since, even if I have not pursued it single-mindedly.
My stepmother once sewed me a pair of shorts and a matching top out of terrycloth. I loved the color. I do believe I wore them a lot.
When we go to the thrift store, the one thing I can always find is something handmade. Be it a knitted, crocheted, or sewn item, I can find it, even in an outlet where everything is hucked randomly into bins. I am always drawn to handmade things.
Plus, I love weird things. I love odd patterns, odd colors, and odd color combinations. I love textures. I can never find the type of clothing I want either. Plus, sewing clothes is far faster than knitting or crocheting them.
Yes, fabric can be expensive. After a quick flick through of some of my fabric, I do have a lot of fabric that will work in the creation of a wardrobe. Nowhere near enough to make a cohesive wardrobe. Although I might have enough to make a matching outfit using certain fabrics. But we shall see.
How I know this is all going to happen is because I have already started setting up pages in my planner to hold the spreads, for both myself and for my son.
Now, to sit down and start pondering and researching fabrics.
Luckily, I do have a lot of online thrifty-type places to look for fabric. Once we start buying fabric, I will let you know where and how things go with ordering and so forth.
One thing I have been planning for a bit, since my son loves when the whole family wears the same thing, for Christmas for example, is the making of matching pajamas — or maybe matching t-shirts— for various holidays all over again. I cannot wait to see the guys and their faces when I make that happen, mwahaha.
Until next week…
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