Back in September, I started the Dream Wardrobe process put together by Helen and Caroline of Love to Sew Podcast. Their downloadable worksheet and accompanying podcast episode work as a guide for assessing what’s in your closet, discovering your style and making plans toward a functional, reflective wardrobe.
I poured over my fall/winter wardrobe and spent some time on Pinterest reflecting on what I enjoy wearing that actually fits my lifestyle. I donated some items that don’t work for me anymore and recycled the ones that were beyond repair. I posted about my wardrobe gaps and problem areas and made shared some sewing plans. (You can read all about here and here!) So where am I now? Well, I didn’t complete all my plans, but I’ve made some garments and bought some pieces, so it’s time to share my progress!
What I’ve Made
I identified my main issue to be tops. My solution was to make elevated sweatshirts and casual blouses to layer up with cardigans. Let’s just say I had mixed results. I made 6 sweaters – none of them from the patterns I’d planned. I stuck a bit better to my blouse plans, but didn’t have much success making wearable garments. Additionally, I made a few things outside my plans. I couldn’t resist sewing up a couple dresses and I even made myself a beautiful set of pajamas!
All my sweater plans pretty much went out the window when Hey June Handmade released the Sheridan sweater. I wrote a post all about my love for this pattern so I won’t go into it too much here. I made four and half versions – I count the mauve one as half since it’s part Sheridan, part refashion and part self-drafted. I also made a lengthened Sew North Cedar sweater, but the neckline didn’t quite work out.
Woven tops are harder to make than sweatshirts. That is what I have learned. I made three tops, according to my plan (well I swapped the McCall’s 7900 for the Designer Stitch KeeLin). And I had some issues. Each of the three tops are documented on my Fails & Toiles page. I didn’t bother finishing Simplicity 1316 and I don’t reach for McCall’s 7542, but at least the KeeLin is wearable even if I’m not totally into the tie-dye print.
Dresses weren’t in my plans, but I love making dresses, so I made some dresses. I finished the Aalborg dress I started August and the Lyric dress I started in September. In December I tested the Valerie dress by Forget Me Not and it’s my most-worn dress in my winter wardrobe.
I’ve needed new PJs for a long time. Like, I’ve been wearing nursing nightgowns even though I stopped breastfeeding well over a year ago. I finally buckled down and made some jammies. I used the Pattern Scout Hana tank and the Margot pants from Love at First Stitch and fabric provided by Minerva in exchange for a blog on their site. I’m so happy with my little PJ set!
What I’ve Altered
Nothing. Well at least not yet. I had a longer list of things to alter, but I’ve paired it down to these two. I made both these dresses last winter and they’re too small now. The Sew Over It Eve dress fits everywhere but the sleeves, so I’m going to remove them and bind the armholes. The Simplicity 8735 dress is going to become a elastic waist skirt.
What I’ve Bought
I took the plunge and finally ordered some Snag tights! They’re. So. Good. I’ve never experienced tights that don’t roll, sag or dig in. I wasn’t wearing the pretty dresses in my closet because all my tights were uncomfortable. It is so crazy to me that all this time women have been so uncomfortable because brands have lied about sizing. I’m so grateful that there’s a brand out there changing things. I got the basic colors – black, navy and slate. I can’t wait to round out my collection with some more colors!
My other main issue was pants. My one pair of jeans weren’t fitting me well. As much as I’d love to invest in a pair of jeans that would last me a few years, I needed something to wear whilst my weight continues to fluctuate. These embrace jeans from H&M are perfect for this transitional time. They are soft, comfy and very stretchy. It’s been a long time since I was this happy in a pair of jeans.
I was planning to thrift some sweaters, but when my mom visited she brought me a load of tops she didn’t want anymore and a few of my old things from the States. She brought me two pullover sweaters, two cardigans and cute crop tee. While they’re all great pieces, I’m most happy to have my 9 year old mustard cardigan back in my life.
This process was so good for me. The ladies at Love to Sew Podcast did a fantastic job of breaking down the abstract concepts finding your style and creating your dream wardrobe into manageable pieces. I feel so much more like myself when I wear garments I’ve made. Between my rotation of practical Sheridan sweaters and having tights to wear with my pretty me-made dresses, I’m feeling myself more. This process gave me the direction and focus my sewing practice needed. I’m really excited to do this same assessment and making process for my spring wardrobe! Thanks for reading and go check out the LTS Dream Wardrobe worksheet! Happy sewing!