Friday, January 6, 2012

Spring into Action

Oh, I am somewhat overwhelmed by my imagination. So many ideas - not so much digital illustrating experience. And yet I want to show you what's in my mind the way that many other sewing bloggers do.

I also have this schizophrenic, if creative, perspective on my reasons for wanting to story board. That's the subject of another post. A really long post.

However, this post is to tell you that I intend to do a Spring Basics Palette over the next 12 weeks and here's what it will entail:
  • 6 garments - 4 of which have been sewn with success before. This isn't about reinventing the wheel. It's about nicely finishing and newly interpreting some standards for a new season. The garments will include a dress, a skirt, a pair of pants, a t shirt, a top and a pair of lounge (aka yoga) pants. Pattern names and numbers will follow...
  • A fun, digital, fashion story board to show colour schemes and renderings of those garments on my croquis - likely not the one I've shown you already, but a new one (traced from another photo) which is more sassy. Having never yet tried to paint clothes on top of my croquis, I have no idea of how this is actually going to work. Palette experts, you may be getting some emails.
I'm going to give more details as soon as I can pull them together but I'll leave you with a few thoughts:
  • My colour choices are really whacky. I don't know if they'll cohere in a palette, though I'm not concerned that they won't cohere in my wardrobe.
  • I've already bought the fabric for 3 of the pieces and I have the fabric for 2 others in my stash. That leaves one garment to purchase for, unless I have some changes of heart.
  • I've spent about $150.00 on the fabric and notions for 3 of the 6 garments. The fabric I already purchased for the other 2 probably cost me $30.00. I speculate I will spend $200.00 and 6 weekends over the next 12 weeks to produce my spring wardrobe.
  • I estimate I would have to spend upwards of $600.00 to purchase these items RTW. Of course, that would take about 2 hours.
  • Recently, Peter wrote asked the interesting question "Are you a practical or fantasy sewer?" This didn't take more than a moment of consideration for me. I am practical. Of course, who can say if my version of practical is someone else's whimsical, but no mind. The Spring Basics Palette is so named because I anticipate the pieces to work interdependently - and day-to-day.
And to close the loop on the topic of the next version of the Ruby Slip and the fabric I've treated:
  • I heard you all re: concerns about the properties of guipure. I went out today and bought 2 new types of mesh-based lace - one piece in a light navy and another in black. I will make the next slip using one of these. (And for the one after that - the gathered bodice version - I'll use the other piece.)
  • In the end, neither the guipure nor silk swatches I hand-washed yesterday either a) bled colour or b) shrank in the least. Intriguing. The silk did change texture somewhat (not that I've ironed the swatch as yet, so the change may not be as pronounced as I'm currently imagining). Even with texture change, and slight loss of sheen, I opted to wash the rest of it by hand because I'm really not prepared to dry-clean. If fading or mega-shrinkage were in the cards, or if the fabric were to be fundamentally destroyed by water, I'd go that route. But it's just not the case. Will the silk look unaltered by this treatment? No. But you've all given me the confidence to try this method - and to recognize that there's not just one way to view silk.
So, if anyone has words of encouragement or advice (anything technical is welcome :-)) please chime in. If you've done the Colette Palette Challenges or a similar version, I'd love to hear your thoughts.


  1. 6 garments over 12 weeks is totally achievable especially with patterns you've done before. I'm with you on practical sewing. It's great to get lots of wear out of handmade garments. Good luck!

  2. Your Spring action plan sounds ambitious to me but I know you can do it, will make it happen.

    I'm surprised the silk didn't shrink, mine definitely did shrink with prewashing.

  3. The plan sounds achievable to me since the patterns are familiar. I know you will be busy but it sounds like a fabulous plan.

    I have had silks that shrink and silks that don't. I'm glad it turned out to your liking. Silk is strong and certainly up for a bit of water.

  4. Katy: That's what I like to think! Thanks.

    Susan: I guess that's why it's so key to do those swatches :-)

    M: How strange that every piece of silk works in its own way. But those are natural fibres for you...