Have you ever seen a garment online or in a store that immediately catches your eye, and then you think to yourself, “Huh, I can make that, and I can make it in a better fabric”? I have. I can’t remember where I spotted it originally–maybe a fashion blog?–but a few weeks ago a camel colored, knee length, shawl collared cardigan got my full attention. It was gorgeous with its rolled up sleeves and effortless, cool aesthetic. I called to me. I know for certain that it was an acrylic blend, which turns me off faster than you can say “Emily hates acrylic.” Acrylic isn’t horrible, and it’s getting better as fiber technology ups its game, but it has a tendency to look blah after just one washing. It can be scratchy and holds static electricity badly sometimes. Acrylic doesn’t scream “quality” to me and I steer clear of it whenever I can. So I walked away from this gorgeous but cheap acrylic cardigan on a mission to find fabric and make my own.
There’s so much to love about the sewing and design process: dreaming up new garments to make, investing time into perfecting the pattern, carefully stitching the pieces together–I could go on. But I think we can all agree that the best part is seeing the finished product. There’s nothing quite like creating something with your own two hands and experiencing the satisfaction that comes with it. For me, it’s also a thrill to see the design elements and colors come together. In college, one of the most important things I learned was the importance of cohesion in a collection, and that theory has stuck with me since then. Every once in a while, I will whip up a stand alone project, but most of the time I like designing mini collections with coordinating components in a thoughtful color story.
Over the past few weeks I’ve posted my list of projects for fall, and I finally have quite a few things finished. (Cue a happy dance!) First up is Vogue 9202. This pattern had me the moment it was released. Jewel neckline, short sleeves, fit and flare silhouette, interesting seams–yes, just yes. I went with view B in a gorgeous fall floral sateen from Promenade Fine Fabrics in New Orleans. You find the fabric here. I should also mention that I thought I had all my autumn colors picked out until I saw that fabric. It changed everything. I mean, how perfect is it for fall?!
Mondays are usually the worst, but I woke up this morning excited for a new day and a fresh start. I’ll be out of town again next week (who am I with all this travel lately, sheesh), so the next few days are all about wrapping up a few projects and styling and photography and editing and writing posts. I’ve been hard at work on my fall wardrobe, and lots of progress has been made. So far I’ve finished four skirts, two dresses, and a cardigan, which, now that I type it out doesn’t sound like much. Keep on keepin’ on, I say!
I had a moment last week when I looked at some of the patterns I’d picked and some of the fabrics I was working with, and I decided that I needed to do a little editing. So, I spent an entire afternoon removing a few things from my list of projects and saving a few others for my “winter” to-do list. I’ve scratched a couple new patterns off my list in favor of ones I’ve made in the past with success.
My shirtdress kick is still going strong, and I loved this design from Vogue’s fall collection. I love the pussy bow, and had every intention of doing view B with the bow in a gorgeous olive sateen. This dress isn’t quite a shirtdress–there’s a button placket down center front, but it doesn’t extend all the way to the hem of the skirt. And there’s a side zipper. Guys, I’m just going to put this out there: I cannot stand side zippers. Talk about a pain. Plus, what’s the point of a shirtdress if you can’t get into it like a shirt? Anyway, after looking closely at the pattern pieces, I decided to put this one away for another day. I still love the design, but I will need to invest some serious time into extending the button placket all the way down center front and eliminating that pesky side zipper.