Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Printed fabrics, colors, & sewing with a plan

While exercising this morning my closet door was open and I couldn't help but notice how I have so many items that clearly don't go together. From my observation, I can see I really gravitate to printed fabrics and have lots of things that really only go with jeans (which is fine since I wear jeans 99.9% of the time). Still it seems a little unsettling to me that I have so many things that don't mix and match. Would I go to the store and buy so haphazardly? Probably not, however I don't seem to have a problem sewing in that fashion. I buy fabrics that I like without really thinking about the end result of what I'll make or who will wear it. I think it's really time I sew with a SWAP (sewing with a plan) mentality. I'm wasting my time and energy (as well as money) buying fabrics and sewing things that don't all marry together.

I also have been thinking more about color lately and what colors look good with my skin tone and hair color. Back around Christmas I was chatting with my mom about "my colors" and she gave me my late grandma's copy of Color Me Beautiful by Carole Jackson. My book is copyright 1980 so the pictures are a bit dated in the book, but the information is still valuable on how to choose which "season" you are. After doing some reading, I determined I'm a "winter" (what my mom and late grandma always told me I was and what "season" they are too). The colors that suit me best are cooler colors - ones that are clear, vivid, or icy with blue undertones (my palette also includes black and white). It's really an excellent book to pick up or borrow from the library if you're unsure of what colors look good on you. To reinforce the point to myself, I recently came to realize that just about every time I wear red, I receive a compliment on how great I look in that color. We all have colors that look good us, we just need to find out what those colors are and wear them. Yes, I am completely guilty of wanting to wear colors outside my palette (why do I love brown so much, it looks terrible on me???). Obviously it's not a crime to wear unflattering colors, however, I now understand how "my" colors seem to bring me to life while the ones that aren't in my palette make me look pale and lifeless.

So my "plan" is to try to sew with a plan. I want to create garments that mix and match and that are also in the "winter" color family. What is the sense in wasting my time and money making things that don't look good on me or go with nothing in my closet? I also want to have staples in my closet that help boost my wardrobe. Those "go to" pieces that I can always rely on to be dressed up or down as needed. Just because I'm a SAHM (stay at home mom) doesn't mean I shouldn't have a fab-u-lous wardrobe.

Just a little thinking out loud today.... :-)

P.S. I forgot to mention that I made four shirts over the weekend (no pictures yet). Two from Jalie 2682 (one in a print - imagine that and it's not really a flattering print for me either) and one in red. Then two from the Ottobre 2-2007-04 (gathered front t-shirt without puffed sleeves) - one in a pink print that is actually flattering to me and the other in the remainder of the red jersey.


stacysews said...

I read your post and I think I could have written the same thing! Maybe I should think more about sewing with a plan in the future.

Lori said...

OMG, your closet sounds like my closet and your thoughts sound exactly like the thoughts buzzing around in my head! I am really, really trying to buy more solid fabrics (especially knits) and avoid browns. I just stared at my tops this morning, thinking I need a solid one today, I need calm! Good luck with your SWAP, the new colors and fabric choices. I think I will have a hard time breaking my printed knit buying habits.

Melissa said...

Oh yeah, two people that can totally relate to me!!! Go Team SWAP (and solid colors too!)!!! lol ;-)

Bonnie D. said...

Add me to the list! I get so sucked into those pretty prints. It's no where near as much fun to buy solid color fabric. I don't know what my colors are but I've always been curious. I'll have to see if the library has that book.

What I did want to tell you that I always love seeing what you make. We have similar tastes!

Anonymous said...

I, for one, seem to be unable to coordinate my whole closet so I have only one rule: no orphans! if a garment coordinates with only one other, it is earning its place in the closet! I once tried to do a swap and nearly went insane with all this planning!

Yes, you are a Winter but it seems that most of your lovely clothes are already in your color family. As for brown, wear it, just not near to your face. You can also get away with a really dark brown which will read as black.

Thanks for posting your toughts! I really enjoy reading your blog!


Jacqui said...

If it goes with jeans, its a match! Right? But seriously, I have that problem,too. If I remember back to my 80's preteen books, I'm an Autumn. I was so shocked was I started comparing fabrics to my skin and realized that olive and sage greens look best. I would have never thought of picking greens before. Maybe one day, too, I will SWAP.

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