Yves of Construction

YSL Exhibit at VMFA

What started out as a desperate plea to the universe for some face time with fellow fanatics ended with a road trip meet-up and enough couture inspiration to fill my iPhone’s storage capacity.

On Sunday, August 20th I co-hosted a visit to the Yves Saint Laurent Perfection of Style exhibit at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in Richmond, Virginia.

As far as I can tell, the seed was planted on Instagram in mid-July when I shared how much my emotional sewing tank was filled during my visit to Brooks Ann Camper’s studio. I wanted more connections like that and asked my followers to let me know if they wanted to hang this summer.

Sewcial media answered with a heads-up from Henna that the YSL exhibit was coming to our part of the country. This was followed by a lets-do-it nudge from Brooks Ann who came through with the lion’s share of coordinating.

Thirteen sewcialists made the drive (some of us headed south, most headed north) to Richmond to meet each other and Monsieur Saint Laurent’s legacy of work.

Finding your own style is not easy, but once found it brings complete happiness. It gives you self-confidence, always. – YSL

This was my first fashion exhibit and I knew very little about the designer, so I gave myself a crash course by consuming a handful of retrospective articles, his obituary,¬†a French-subtitled biopic¬†on Netflix and Charlie Rose’s 2002 video interview with Anna Wintour where she reflects on the career of Yves Saint Laurent on the day he retired.

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When I arrived, I was so enthralled with everything, I forgot to seal my education by reading the Runway Checklist program the museum provided.

I missed my chance to match in real time the 100 plus garments on display with their written profile at my fingertips. In hindsight, had I consulted the exhibit’s program, I might of suppressed the¬†instinct to photograph what felt like every seam and swatch.

Short of paying for another ticket and going back to the museum (the temptation was strong), reliving the exhibit through my photos was the best way to gel what I’d learned with what I witnessed.

IMG_9363I took in EVERYthing.

But my my camera roll revealed a theme in my admiration. I was drawn to Yves’ sketches like gravity.

They were displayed throughout the exhibit, but the wall of croquis from his collections could’ve been a stand alone shrine.

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I wanted to drown in the drawings, to stream them into my brain like a TV series.

There was a scene in the YSL movie where a young Saint Laurent falls apart from the pressure of running the house of Dior and declares that he just wants to be left alone to sketch. I empathized with his deep yearning to create admist real world responsibilities and began to see him as more than just a dresser of rich women.

Because his designs were brought to life by teams of people (most uncredited) and the museum’s proximity rules limited my inspection of their construction, I spent much of my time appreciating my favorite garments by matching them to their pencil births.

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Organza “sailor sweater” cocktail dress embroidered with red, white and blue sequins. Spring-Summer 1966 haute couture collection

With garments lined up on stage to the left and his instructional vision for them on the right, it was a fascinating pencil tour of couture that lingers with me.

Born in 1936, YSL’s talent for drawing was nurtured by a childhood filled with free-range play and craft in French-colonized Oran, Algeria. By age 17 his sketches were powerful enough to win design competitions, earn him favor with the editor-in-chief of Vogue Paris, and ultimately blow Christian Dior’s mind ‚ÄĒ enough to take on the young prodigy as an apprentice the first day they met in 1955.

This is a kid who dropped out of couture college because it bored him. I am not even sure if he knew how to sew.

But one thing was true. The boy could sketch his ass off.

 

Only three years after being promoted to assistant, the house’s financier named Saint Laurent as Dior’s successor when the 52-year old master passed away unexpectedly. Yves was only 21 years old when he became the youngest couturier in the world.

When I was his age I had a lot of experience with leadership¬†‚ÄĒ as an older sister to three younger siblings, running an after school program for junior high kids, and becoming a Resident Advisor in my college dorm as a Freshman¬†‚ÄĒ but none of my young adult training would’ve prepared me to run a house of luxury fashion design.

Diva-sized tantrums, therapy, and supporters who loved me enough to put up with me would be required.

All were part of Yves’ coping strategy.

All creative work is painful. And fashion is very, very difficult. It plays on all my anxieties. – YSL

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Navy blue whipcord pea coat with matching belt. Spring-Summer 1967 haute couture collection.

If Pierre Berg√©, an entrepreneur and “ring master of French culture“, hadn’t fallen hard for Yves and pulled off many emotional and financial rescues for the fragile designer, that¬†first successful collection of trapeze silhouettes in 1958¬†would have been his one-hit wonder.

He went on to royally dissapoint Dior executives in 1960 with his nearly all black Beatnik collection of crocodile-skinned motorcycle jackets, mixed media minks, and other very un-Dior like street fashion trends.  When YSL was drafted into the French army that same year and returned after only a few months (discharged after a nervous breakdown), the house of Dior took their chance and replaced him.

He and Berg√© sued for breach of contract and used the settlement money ‚Äď supplemented¬†with backing from an Atlanta businessman and half the designers from Dior ‚Ästto open Yves’ own house.

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Red leather double-breasted coat.  Autumn Winter 1970 haute couture collection.

The YSL origin story has more pioneering moments than other designers of his generation (like Karl Lagerfeld who took second place to Yves in the design competition that kicked off their careers).

Known for sketching out designs for entire collections in a matter of weeks (often at his retreat in Marrakech), Saint Laurent’s ability to illustrate the shapes in his imagination bordered on superhuman. The exhibit pointed out that the drawings he discussed with his chefs d’ateliers were quite specific and included details about “ergonomics, drape and the equilibrium that must be maintained between the fabric and the body”.

Learning this about him and the complex haute couture process helped me reconcile what was so special about his contribution. I kept looking for evidence that his hands could construct an actual garment.

I wanted him to reflect the image of a couturier I’d made up in my mind: ¬†A builder of elegant, custom garments with needle, measuring tape, muslin, AND pencil in hand.

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Black wool ottoman jacket with gold, purple, and blue lamé yoke, gold cuffs, black silk velvet straight skirt. Ordered by Palamo Picasso. Autumn-Winter 1979 haute couture collection.

But with haute couture’s irrelevant budget and network of craftsmen, one can comfortably outsource the execution of beauty.

Haute couture  conists of secrets whispered from generation to generation. If in ready-to-wear, a garment is manufactured according to standard sizes, the haute couture garment adapts to any imperfection in order to eliminate it. РYSL

Saint Laurent may not have directly produced his own garment patterns but his work and his house became a pattern for success that is still followed by designers and haute couture houses today.

He was basically knighted in 1985 by French President FrancŐßois Mitterrand and later president Nicolas Sarkozy declared the designer¬†as “the first to elevate haute couture to the rank of art – and that gave him global influence.‚ÄĚ

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Wedding gown, multicolored silk velvet coat with appliqué letters forming the words LOVE ME FOREVER (front) OR NEVER (back) and heart, stars, and cloud in silk satin. Autumn-Winter 1970 haute couture collection.

We can thank Yves Saint Laurent for bringing us the styles that have flooded our wardrobes over the years. He stretched the conventions of silhouette and played with gender in a way that helped women explore their power. 

Do you remember your first pea coat? I got my first one in high school like a rite of passage ‚ÄĒnavy blue with oversized buttons and requisite Gap label. Having grown up in California, I could’ve survived the 90s with my staple denim and camo army jackets. But putting on that pea coat gave my unfocused style some cool points at a time I needed them most.

Thank you, Yves.

Imagine Hilary Clinton’s presidential campaign without a plague of pantsuits.

You can’t.

Thank you, Yves. 

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Pantsuit. Pinkish-beige gabardine jacket and pleated pants. Spring-Summer 1976 haute couture collection.

Four years before I was born, Bianca Jagger’s wedding tux was carefully crafted into history. To forever haunt and inspire me.

Thanks for the outfit goals, Yves. 

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Black silk jersey jumpsuit with long zipper and drawstring waist. Spring-Summer 1975 haute couture collection; “First” pantsuit. Black wool double-breasted jacket and pants with white pinstripes.

When he opened his ready-to-wear boutique on the left bank of the Seine river in 1968¬† ‚Ästthe Greenwich Village of Paris ‚Äď he was beginning to democratize haute couture. According to the exhibit’s literature, the¬†rive¬†gauche¬†brand offered modular options instead of “precisely matched outfits… leaving women to choose whatever combinations they wanted.”

He continued to push boundaries on the runway by:

  • featuring black models on it
  • daring to use ethnic elements and folklore as inspiration for his couture designs
  • popularizing the wedding dress as the last outfit on the catwalk of all haute-couture collections
  • debuting avant garde garments
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Short evening dress. Homage to George Braque. Black barathea weave belted dress with two white cotton piqué doves. Adornments by Lemarié.

When I learned that Saint Laurent invented the concept of a designer having a living retrospective with his 1983 show at the New York MET, I realized he would’ve been right as home as a blogger. Of course he would’ve farmed out the work to his couture social media team. His fantasy blog would have an Instagram account with celebrity fittings in the stories.

I’d follow him and double tap all of the toile photos.

Seeing the progress of couture is my absolute favorite part of this informal course in designer appreciation. I was happy to see some test garments in the exhibit. It was a helpful reminder of how a muslin mockup can be a beautiful, precise prediction.

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Beige organza evening dress embroidered with purple, pink, silver, and beige beads and sequins with beaded fringe. Embroider by Lessage. Spring-Summer 1994 haute couture collection.

Speaking of predictability, every one of us had a had a silent moment of homage to YSL’s homage to pop art. The Mondrian dress alone was worth the price of admission.

The genius of that color blocked wool jersey thrills me to no end!

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Homage to Piet Mondrian. Wool jersey cocktail dress with ivory, black, blue, red, and yellow piecing. Autumn-Winter 1965 haute couture collection

It was at this point in my tour that I broke protocol to peek under hems looking for finishing techniques.

The museum frowns on that. To the security guy on duty that day who kindly informed me to keep my distance, I am sorry for scowling at you.

Your job is important.

Without you, my fingerprints would be a part of fashion history.

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Homage to Pop Art. (Left) Dark blue wool jersey cocktail dress with red wool jersey crescent moon piecing and irregular strips of light blue and black. (Right) Green wool jersey cocktail dress with heart-shaped pink piecing and uneven strip of blue. Autumn-Winter 1966 haute couture collection.

Since I can’t go back in time to try on the garments that nearly got me banned from the museum, I took a moment to virtually try one on.

My pre-exhibit research led me to a kitschy ad for two of YSL’s pop art dresses worn by black models with sky-scraping hairstyles and mod poses.

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Homage to Tom Wesselmann. Purple wool jersey with pink piecing. Autumn-Winter 1966 haute couture collection.

What would the dress look like on my proportions?

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There. My custom croquis is wearing a custom YSL dress that I can appreciate without attempting any heroics to sew it. Though sourcing some yardage of epic wool jersey might change my tune.

Dressing is a way of life….. it can give you freedom and liberation, help you to find yourself and to move without¬† restraint. – YSL

I don’t have an iconic French designer’s skill at drawing or days to hide myself away in peace to do it, but with steady practice my sketching will mature and begin to reveal my elusive personal style. So I can carry on with my mission to sew it.

It is very cool and serendipitous that Yves had similar priorities.

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Even after taking this time to share what I learned about Yves Saint Laurent, I am still processing the experience. This is the dude whose ideas for the graceful avoidance of nudity dressed me and my mother’s generation. I think it will take some time to fully comprehend his talents.

I am grateful for the nerdy pilgrimage. Even wore my best handmade dress as a nod to the house.

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Meeting up with women who “get it” made the event a complete treat.

Plans to hang out, swap supplies, and stay in touch were made with enthusiasm.

The Richmond exhibit ended Sunday. There was one in Seattle prior. If all of this makes you curious, keep your ears to the ground for its arrival at a museum near you.

To learn more in the meantime, this timeline from 1936 to 2013 is a handy account of the designer’s life and work.

I leave you with more photos from the exhibit.

VMFA, if you are reading this…note the lack of flash photography. The one rule of yours I managed to follow. If you let me back in, I promise to heed the rest.

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Wanna Be Sewing: Pencil Skirts

Later this week there’ll be more sewing soul contemplation. Today, I am taking you on a quick, mid-week scroll through my current fixation on¬†pencil skirts. Specifically, denim ones. A¬†custom-fit, deep indigo skirt, tapered at the knee. (1)¬†Curve-hugging enough to distract my husband from a computer game, (2) conservative¬†enough to¬†run an all-day tech company meeting, and (3) durable¬†enough for¬†changing¬†a flat tire on my pickup truck…or a small child¬†covered in mud.

I want this skirt in my life so badly, I hired a couturier to teach me how to make one from scratch this fall. I’ll share more about that experience down the line. For now, let’s peak¬†at a few of the¬†high-end ready-to-wear skirts I’m inspired by and maybe even “pencil in” how they¬†might¬†look on me.

Starting with this simple one from Citizens of Humanity.

Citizens Of Humanity Denim Pencil Skirt

A high, contour waistband and¬†a center front seam, this basic skirt is also showing some quiet¬†rebellion with its boldly¬†angled pockets. It’s like that front panel starts off wanting to be a middle gore in a three gore skirt, but then changes its mind when the center seam¬†shows up, maps out a smooth exit,¬†and juts off to the side seam in creative protest.

Story of my life.
Denim Pencil Skirt Design Inspiration 01

This Burberry beauty is a bit deceiving on the curve-hugging front because its made of stretch denim. But, those style lines are what caught my eye.

Burberry Brit Stretch-denim pencil skirt

A classic, sporty denim skirt with all of the expected features until your eye is lured down the thighs by a hypnotic pair of double-topstitched, flat-felled seams.

Yes and yes.

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Now, what about the collar-and-a-peplum-had-a-baby feature of this $500 Moschino skirt? Bringing that kind of attention to my waist might not be the best decision. Or, it could be the missing link.
Moschino Buttoned stretch-denim pencil skirt

As long as I never find myself¬†transported to the 1980s where I might¬†get the urge to “pop” the collar, the style might have a chance on me.

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Look out for more inspiration sketches¬†on Instagram, the dumping ground for my design impulses. Seriously, though, I am physically restraining myself from sketching and sharing more right now. A sign that it’s time to head back to real life where our fingers are crossed that no truck tires or tiny muddy¬†people need my help today.

It’s Sew Hopping on Instagram

For the last 11 days, the sewcial community has been blowing up Instagram with a Sew Photo Hop hosted by Rachel of House of Pinheiro. The 31 days of pre-published themes has every needle-wielding maker getting in on the creative share-fest. I am one (out of like 3,000) of them and my scroll finger is sore from soooooo much sewing eye candy.

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My favorite themes so far (clockwise):¬†Can’t Live Without (Day 2), Pattern That Changed My Life (Day 6), Stash (Day 9), Would Exchange Closets With…(Day 10).¬†The themes keep sewing on my mind even more than it already is – which I find hilarious because I didn’t think there were any vacancies in my sewing brain. But, this insta-challenge got my third eye wide open and it’s tuned to a 24/7 sewing channel.

On Day 1, we all introduced ourselves with quirky selfies and bios and from there, the handheld sewing convention took off at full speed. It’s unbelievable¬†how many new sewists I’ve met! We are EVERYWHERE covering the planet like a space quilt. If you haven’t already, drop by #sewphotohop¬†or log into your Instagram app where there are¬†7,000+ posts sporting the hashtag at the moment.

Today’s theme is¬†“Bucket List” and we’re all sharing the things we want to make before we die. When I shared the photo I thought best fit the theme, I also revealed that I will be living forever in order to complete my list.

Are you participating in or following along with the #sewphotohop? What new IG accounts and/or blogs have you discovered?

Buy it or Make It

When I see a ready-to-wear garment I like and serendipitously find its sewing pattern twin, I feel like the winner of a secret matching game. To keep track of them, I started a pinterest board on my new sewing-only account called Buy it or Make It – a rhetorical question for the enthusiastic seamstress.

This Badgley Mischka dress was just released as a pre-Fall pattern (Vogue 1460) by McCall’s and it is my jam on sprouted wheat toast. I am all about the dolman sleeve for no fuss fitting and the high cowl neckline is just the right amount of soft and sexy to balance the sleek pencil skirt.

Buy It or Make It #1

Peter Pan collars are terribly cute to me, but that’s the problem. They can look TOO cute if not handled properly. But, Peter Pilotto produces a peter pan collar like a prince (given his price tag, that irresistible alliteration is now a double entendre). I would take Vogue 9109, a multi-cup size pattern (my favorite kind), and reshape the collar pattern to make it more like Mr. Pilotto’s sharp, wide-set one.

But It or Make It, Vol. 2

Nina Ricci didn’t reinvent the wheel with her draped cashmere coat, but seeing it sure does inspire me to make a cheaper version. It’s hard for me to think about third and fourth layers while drowning in summer humidity, but a quick project like Butterick 6244 (sewn unlined with double faced wool) could be just the thing to kick off serious winter sewing when I’m actually ready for it. Luckily, the planning of it can happen while enjoying A/C.

Buy It or Make It, Vol. 3

The sporty asymmetry of this white Victoria Beckham dress is really appealing to me. McCall’s released a multi-cup pattern, M7185 that has a similar look. The pattern has a full skirt variation ‚ÄĒ my default style choice ‚ÄĒ but, I might be widening my (or rather narrowing) my horizons next season by sewing a slim skirt style or two.

Buy It or Make It, Vol. 4

Which of these styles would you like in your life?

Wanna Be Sewing: Stripes

Horizontal. Vertical. Diagonal. Stripes. I want to wear them in a box or with a fox or in Fort Knox. They’ve been on my mind considerably. It doesn’t help that all of my social media feeds¬†keep tempting me with more stripey fashion. Tipping me over the edge was the awesomely clever,¬†curve-loving stripe placement on this¬†recently Instragrammed dress¬†by Andie of¬†Sew Pretty in Pink.

Here’s the rest of the inspiring, striped lovelies that have been strolling through my mind palace like spoiled divas. They all have ridiculous price tags, but knock-affable features for the gung-ho seamstress.¬†Take a scroll with me…

Thakoon Gathered Waist Shift Dress

¬†This $1,420 dress by¬†Thakoon¬†with its¬†low neckline, elasticated waist and wide pastel striping is the picture of cuteness. And, the model’s skin with those colors!


Etro Floral Silk Tunic Dress
How about this silk tunic dress by¬†Etro? Fa-bu-lous. At $1,340, it better be! Finding the perfect black and white striped fabric to pair with white silk for the hems would be a serious hunt, but color blocking could work (almost like piecing a quilt). And that floral detail on the right shoulder…could be hand painted. Effectively elevating it to the level of slap-your-mama gorgeous.

Giorgio Armani striped knit skirt
This¬†Giorgio Armani¬†striped knit skirt¬†is asking to be knocked off with its $1,427 price tag. Seriously, it’s two rectangles and a double knit. Overpriced but¬†adorable.

J.W. ANDERSON Tri-colour striped silk dress

I want to date this dress by¬†J.W. Anderson.¬†I’m not sure what the technical term is for that off the shoulder flounce detail, but I love how it sits ever so slightly askew to echo the bias, tri-color stripes. At $1,419, it’s waiting to be bought by a high rolling dame or¬†DIY’d¬†by a clever maker.


Chloe Hand Drawn Stripes on Silk Crepe De Chine Wrap Dress

 A drapey wrap dress pattern, a big floral print and the perfect coordinating striped fabric could recreate this look from Chloe. Luckily the silk crepe de chine available to home sewers is way more affordable than the $2,095 price tag of this beauty.


Marni Stripe Georgette Skirt
 I never would have thought to add a rib knit waistband to a sheer skirt, let alone do it all in stripes. High five to Marni for this $589 piece of sewing inspiration. Note to self: This is how you wear above the knee shorts in public.

Novis sequin patterned striped dress
By¬†Novis. On sale at the moment for $2,446. It’s sequin. And the peek of stripes at the skirt corner is everything.

STELLA MCCARTNEY Striped stretch-knit dress

I can always count on¬†Stella McCartney¬†to bring it. The simplicity of stripe layering on this t-shirt dress is what’s makes it catch your eye. I’m hoping something like this catches my sewing machine soon.


Altuzarra belted striped shirt dress

Speaking of simplicity. The way¬†Altuzarra¬†is working the stripes on this shirtdress…the only effort at matching is on the almost invisible front pocket. Instead of paying $1,321 for it, I might¬†let it inspire an adventure with McCall’s 6891, an underestimated pattern in my stash that could ease me into shirtdressmaking.


Piazza Sempione flared striped dress

A knock off¬†of this $1,570¬†Piazza Sempione¬†dress in a knit is totally doable with¬†McCall’s 7121. Finding the thick, double stripe fabric would be the challenge.


Tanya Taylor Peggy Rainbow Stripe Skirt
OK. I’ve never heard of¬†Tanya Taylor Peggy,¬†but her $525 pencil skirt of dueling stripes has me wishing I was her best friend. The moment I snag the right fabric, this skirt is happening.

Halston Heritage Appliquéd cotton and silk-blend dress
The finale of this tribute to parallel lines is brought to you by¬†Halston Heritage.¬†This dress is a¬†breathtaking argument for giving curves a license to wear horizontal stripes. I can’t spot a waistline seam (or any for that matter), so I won’t talk smack about the¬†$445 price, but it does open my mind wide to the transformational power of stripes. Wide enough to reconsider my phobia (more like lazy avoidance) of stripe matching.

Which of these beauties inspires you?

YARDAGE of the WEaK

YOW Gertie FloralCan you believe I found this cotton sateen at Joann’s of all places? Because I cannot. And I’m the one who bought it! It’s from the new fabric line, “Gertie”, designed by our favorite vintage-crazy, blogging seamstress, Gretchen Hirsch. And, I really, really dig it.

Gertie Swatch

Finding cotton sateen at Joann was a miracle all on its own, but to find a print that reminds me of this Dolce & Gabanna collection I’ve been stalking for months was downright magic.

Dolce & Gabanna Floral Collection

I think it’s brilliant to choose ONE print for so many garments. D&G’s collection has more than I featured above, but I’d be happy with just three pieces in a mini capsule wardrobe.

I didn’t get 10 yards of Gertie floral, however. Only three. Figured I’d make one dress (get a little pattern placement practice with those massive flowers – mind the girls, now) and see what happens from there. Though I can predict getting tired of the print after hours of handling it and walking away from my One-Print-Many-Garments fantasy.

Gertie Floral

What would you make with this bold cotton sateen floral?

Because a goal without a plan is just a wish…

sewingplans

After a week of weird home Wi-Fi problems that we might as well blame on a poltergeist, I’ve returned to the world of ones and zeros with a pretty solid spring/summer wardrobe sewing plan. Being¬†locked out of the Internet for hours at a time turned out to be the perfect environment for good, old-fashioned list making. Writing down my sewing plans got my head of out of the clouds long enough to realize my original vision needed to be scaled back a bit.¬†Of course, now that I’m back to modern living, my paper and pencil list got a quick Polyvore upgrade.

This¬†month’s Wardrobe Architect 2015 challenge¬†was to¬†nail down the patterns I’ll be sewing for¬†spring and summer. I started with my¬†happy silhouettes from February, made some edits and additions, and organized my final garment/pattern choices into three lists: Sew Now, Sew Soon, and Sew Someday. The Someday list is where my fantasy sewing projects will live ‚Ästgarments¬†that might be a new silhouette for me or just beyond my skills.¬†I’ll share those throughout the season. The Now list¬†is focused on¬†filling in wardrobe gaps with simple, easily sewn pieces, while the Soon list takes things to the next level when I’m ready.

Sew Now

The undisputed frontrunner of my wardrobe is going to be a knit fit and flare dress. The Moneta, to be exact. I’ve recently made some changes to my Moneta (a story for later) that helped me confirm its place as my wardrobe workhorse pattern.¬†My threat of sewing a rainbow of them is slowly coming true.

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With all of the sweat I put into getting the perfect knit dress, it made sense to stay with the groove and have a knit sewing marathon. These are the garments that landed on my Sew Now list.

  1. knit fit and flare dress
  2. fitted t-shirt
  3. long cardigan
  4. bodysuit
  5. knit pencil skirt
  6. leggings
  7. high waist panties

A handful of Moneta dresses, some tees, a pencil skirt in a great color, a cardigan topper, day of the week panties (because saggy drawers ain’t cute and Hanes doesn’t make briefs in petite size), and a bodysuit to wear with full¬†skirts will kick off my warm weather sewing. My serger is threaded with new spools of Wooly Nylon and I already have my first assembly line cut. A few late nights of sweatshop work could get me halfway through the Sew Now list, but knowing me, I’ll opt for¬†beauty sleep and continue to squeeze in my sewing before work and over the weekends.

Sew Soon

If I don’t get sick of sewing knits first, the Sew Soon list is up next. My return¬†to woven fabrics¬†starts with these garments:

  1. pajamas
  2. woven t-shirt
  3. pleated narrow leg pants
  4. gathered or pleated skirt
  5. cropped cardigan
  6. signature dress
  7. cap sleeve blouse
  8. culottes
  9. pleated neck shift dress
  10. woven fit and flare dress

I’m especially excited about this list because it includes another¬†signature silhouette dress (possibly in another¬†Liberty print!) and another¬†self-drafted shift dress, both are TNT patterns that deserve some love and mindful¬†execution. There’s also the set of magnificent pajamas I’ve never owned, a reprise of my first successful pants and woven tee patterns, an attempt at buttonholes on something other than a pillow (cropped cardigan), a trendy pair of culottes, the Sencha blouse I muslined in November, and a new fit and flare dress inspired by Dolce and Gabana’s dreamy $1,300 wisteria print frock (basically, the woven version of my Moneta silhouette).

This list is crazy, right? I’ve never planned out my sewing like this. To make a list of 17 garments and actually sew them feels like planning a walk on the moon without my space camp badge. When I plan projects at work, I set a target date for each milestone or at least forecast when things will be wrapped up. For this project, that would be something like 1 garment a week for 17 weeks, but if I¬†consider the first day of fall (September 23rd) as the official end of summer, then that gives me 24 weeks of warm weather sewing and wearing time. Not bad. A heroic accomplishment if I pull it off.

How’s your seasonal sewing (or shopping) plans going? Anyone else trying out culottes?