The Wardrobe Architect Week 11: Planning your pieces
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Are you ready to make your sewing plans?
In the last couple installments, we talked about choosing silhouettes for our new mini wardrobes and defining a color palette.
With those two things in mind, along with all the work we’ve done before on defining our style and prints that we like, it’s time to decide what pieces we need to create a coherent little wardrobe.
I’m going to outline the steps I went through. See if they make sense for you too.
1. Shop your closet
Before diving into all your dreams for the brand new wardrobe you’re going to sew, take some time to see what you already have that fits.
Again, here are my silhouettes. I’m also including variations on some of these silhouettes: the shorts could be swapped out with a mini skirt, and the slim pants with a slim pencil skirt.
After going through my drawers and closet, I found that I had several items that are in my chosen palette and fit into these silhouettes. Here are some things I found (items are similar, not exactly the same).
[images: see my set on polyvore]
2. Find the holes
Once you know what you have to work with, figure out what you need to complete your silhouettes.
This is a good time to decide how big you want your wardrobe to be. If you don’t have most of what you need in your closet already, are you comfortable with buying or making a lot of new stuff? If not, it’s best to keep your wardrobe very small for now and build from there in the future. If you anticipate having lots of sewing time and a big fabric stash to shop from, go to town!
For me, I found that I needed strappy dresses, strappy tops and tanks, and sundresses.
3. Shop for inspiration
This was the fun part for me. I looked around for inspiration that fit within my palette and came up with tons of ideas.
If you want to get really precise and technical, you could list out exactly how many of each type of piece you need and assign colors to each based on your palette. For me, I found that a more organic approach worked better.
4. Make a list
Finally, list out the pieces you need to make or acquire. Here are mine. You can do yours as an inspiration board like this (I used polyvore), sketch, or just make a list.
[images: see my set on polyvore]
Ok, so here are my lists.
- 1 ivory silk button down (I could make it, but I really just like the ones from everlane. Or I’ll try to find a vintage one.)
- 1 pair of minimalist black flat sandals
- 1 pair of sneakers – I like these linen topsiders
- 1 ivory camisole top
- 1 peach silk sorbetto tank
- 1 tan camisole top with kitty print (from the fabric I bought recently)
- 1 black silk camisole top
- 1 simple full skirted dress in black and ivory window pane plaid.
- 1 black silk slip dress (I’m just about finished sewing this already)
- 1 blush pink silk slip dress (got this cut out and partially sewn already)
- 1 pencil skirt with black and white geometric print of some kind
- 1 ivory lace/eyelet full skirted dress
- 1 silk kimono wrap in a pretty print (maybe sheer? I want something to cover my skin from sun but still feel light and airy)
Yeah. I know it’s a lot. But most of these are really quick and easy to sew, and some of them I already have fabric for or have begun working on, so it’s not as much as it looks.
I do need one new pair of flat sandals, because I completely trashed my last pair in Mexico City last October and had to throw them away before getting home. Similarly, I need new sneakers for my more active days (as much as I’d like to, I can’t ride a bike in clogs). I always seem to need new sandals and sneakers every summer.
Try following the steps above to come up with your list of projects. I really enjoyed using polyvore for this, but you could use any tool you like: Pinterest, a sketchpad for ideas, a physical scrapbook or moodboard, a written list, whatever!
Next week, we’re going to be adding in more accessories since those are important too. After that, I’m going to have a very special free download to help you plan individual sewing projects. Fun times!
I’d love to know what you come up with from this! Do you find that you need to make a lot, or just a little? Are there things you’d rather buy than make? How’s it all coming together for you?