Friday, January 03, 2014

The whimsical seamstress actually has a plan!

I tend to sew based on whim and rarely finish anything. Sad, but true. I get a rush of inspiration, get through fitting and then realize "Ugh, I hate it!" Rinse and repeat... that was most of my 2013 sewing experience. I realize now that I desperately need a plan in order to accomplish anything. Otherwise I'll just do what I did last year and end 2014 with nothing to wear, again! I am NOT going to let that happen!

Today Patti, one of the other RTW Fasters, posted a brilliant blog post about figuring out what you love to wear and what you need in your wardrobe. Using those ideas (found here) I came up with a plan in 3 minutes. Seriously, 3 MINUTES! I can't believe how fast it was! The idea is to evaluate what you spend your time doing that requires clothing (um, pretty much everything but bathing, folks) and specify what clothing you need for those activities. Here's what I came up with:

Weddings/Birthday Dinners - Cocktail Dress
Plays/Date Night - Cocktail Dress, Skirt/Blouse or Slacks/Blouse
Sleeping - Pajamas and Robe
Working Out - Leggings, T-Shirt, Sports Bra, Hoodie
Interviews - Dress and Jacket/Blazer
Doctor Appointments - Dress, Skirt/Blouse or Slacks/Blouse
Lounging at Home - Knit Top or Sweater and Pants or Jeans
Cleaning House - T-shirt/Leggings/Apron
Entertaining at Home - Dress, Skirt/Blouse or Slacks/Blouse
Errands - Dress, Skirt/Blouse, or Slacks/Blouse
Seasonal Changes - Winter Coat, Dress Coat, Jacket

With that information I can definitely see what I need to have in my wardrobe! Some of them I have already, but not many. Based on what I already have, I need to make the following during the RTW Fast. I will need to buy new bras, sport bras, panties, hosiery and the like, but no actual garments! If I have time I want to try to make my own bras and panties. However, I can't go out in public with just those so I need to focus on my garments first.

1 Cocktail Dress
2 Dresses
2 Skirts
2 Slacks
3 Blouses
3 Knit Tops
3 Pajamas
2 Pants for lounging or Jeans
1 Dress Coat
1 Robe

So I need to sew 20 items! Whew! The cocktail dress is already well in progress and I'm about to start one of the 2 dresses because I will need it very soon. Once I get those done I will be planning when to make the rest of my wardrobe. I want to focus on basics that I can dress up or down as I need to and that can be mixed and matched to give me a variety of outfits.

I also have commissions coming up... A dress for my niece for Easter, a wedding gown for a friend, and flower girl dresses for my own girls to be in my friend's wedding. The wedding is actually in May 2015 so I'll be starting those around November. I'm going to try to get one more garment done in January to make 3 for the month and get as many done as I can in February so that March and April can be focused on the Easter dress I need to make. Then I'll have May through October to focus on everything else left for my wardrobe. Wish me luck, y'all! My sewing machine is going to be going into overdrive!


  1. A great plan. I look forward to seeing these 20 items!

  2. Glad that article helped you get started... and you are on your way! Isn't this fun!! I am not quite at the "start sewing" stage but I will be soon. Hope to make at least two items in January.

    1. Awesome! I must make at least the two dresses before the middle of the month. I want to make one other item in January simply because I want more than a cocktail dress and one basic dress that I can wear.

  3. Love how you have commissions! Good luck -- a wedding gown sounds daunting but will probably be fun to sew and create.

    1. Luckily the gown isn't really that complicated. It's a mostly satin dress with a lace overskirt. Even with it not that complicated I'm still giving myself 6 months to get it done. I want the fit to be absolutely perfect for the bride.

  4. I am a an RTW Faster, and have never made a plan, whether sewing or purchasing... Hence 2 full closets and nothing to wear! thanks so much for the inspiration.

    1. You're welcome! I never had a plan, either, that I would actually stick to. I'm determined that this time around is different because I just can't get away with the clothes I own anymore. I need to buckle down and focus so I can have things to wear.

  5. I love your plan for the year. I think I may do the same and really plan out what to make this year.

    1. I think that having a plan will really help. I know from experience that it's terrible having a wardrobe full of bits and pieces that just don't work together or fit your lifestyle.

  6. This is fantastic! What a terrific idea, this way, you will stay focused :)

    1. Staying focused is definitely my goal. I am not very strong at staying focused so I hope having this plan helps.