Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Pink, Grey, And Yarn

Yesterday, I did laundry and put those things back up in the closet and then I sorted through my summer clothing because it seems to me that if I am going to develop a collection, the logical starting point is the clothes I already have.And then, because I had space and hangers, I put those things in the closet as well. And just in case you think that moved the contents back from bare to full, think again. I have always been a minimalist. What that really means is that five summer garments went into the other sizes box. Six came down to the studio to be cut apart and recycled. And seven went into the closet. If they were more, they were cleared out in the fall and now, with all the clothes that I own in my closet, there is still PLENTY of potential.

When I clean my closet - which I do two or three times a year - I never worry about what's in the laundry because obviously I'm wearing what's in there. That's why it's in the laundry. You might think that would be true of the stash closet as well - that I would wear whatever is in there if I only sewed it. Since I bought it, I must like it. This make sense and it doesn't. It's akin to opening your closet and having nothing to wear because it's not strictly a practical decision. And that's what happened. I saw a lot of black and grey when I'm not in a black and grey mood and I didn't see a lot of colour when I'm in a colour mood BUT... I did find enough to get started.

There was such a positive response to the not-red-but-really-pink-with-an-orange-ish-undertone jacket that I decided this pink and grey sweater knit would be perfect for a top to go with my grey pants. And I'd like a a scarf to go with from this gorgeous yarn. I find that a scarf keeps me warm in a cool environment without wearing a coat and since I want to wear this outfit to SewExpo and I hate wearing a coat indoors all day, this could be good. I'm debating Stephen West's Pagona - mostly because I already own the pattern and I like the drape. But first, I need to finish the scarf I'm knitting.

After cleaning the stash, I had a hard time getting to sleep Monday night. My mind was vibrating with so many possibilities that I wasn't sure where to start. I felt myself getting confused and just a little bit frantic which was rather annoying after feeling so confident and capable only a few hours before. It seemed like there simply wasn't going to be enough time to catch up with myself. So I did some research. Which is what I tend to do when I need to both slow down and make decisions. I find research grounding.

Searching by "sewing with a plan" led me to a posting on SugarPlum's blog that in turn linked to the entire wardrobe planning series at The Vivienne Files where Janice shows step-by-step how to plan a wardrobe from the ground up. What a LOT of work and so well done. Janice is amazingly gifted and incredibly giving with her information. I'm so grateful.

Each wardrobe is built around two core neutrals with two accents and a light neutral - if I'm wording that correctly. I took notes and printed out some of the info and will be pouring over these pictures for a bit before I begin because even though I read through the eighteen steps, there was a LOT to think about and I have some starting decisions to make.

Originally, I followed along with how the gray and navy plan developed knowing that I'd evolve those choices into my own however, there was an additional posting for a white and navy plan that resonated with me even more. Not that I want a grey and navy or even a white and navy plan. I might choose white and black or denim and white or navy and fuchsia or.... or... or... With this detailed outline, I can start anywhere, follow the advice, sew the plan using patterns and fabrics and details that match my personality, and end up with a "cruise collection" that works before, during, and well after my holiday. YES YES! !

LOL - right now, I'm working with pink, grey, and yarn.

Talk soon - Myrna

Grateful - for Janice, her blog, and her generously shared information

Take classes, read books, study design, but most of all, step out into your own style and territory and experiment.  Find a teacher who will work you, be ruthlessly honest so you can grow your work and become a better problem solver.  Find an artist or designer whose work resonates with your heart and really REALLY study them… creating your own design muse.  Play with no attachment to the outcome.  Make mistakes.  Work every day, get better at what you do every day.  Develop a creative community around you, people who share your passion and hopefully, people who are more skilled, talented and smarter so you can learn from them.  Collaborate.  Take time alone.  Play.  If you want to make a living at it, develop your business and entrepreneurial skills.  Learn to understand the connection between creativity and responsibility. 

– Marcy Tilton


  1. I love Janice's website, and her starting from scratch plan. The navy and grey plan made my heart sing - except for the pink! I swapped the pink for light blue instead. I've not sewn a stitch in ages, but when I'm shopping for clothing, I keep the plan in mind - I'm slowly weeding the black out of my closet, in favour of navy (and DARK grey, where I can find it!)

    1. I loved how each plan developed but it's definitely true that you find an affinity for one of them - the more you plan. I think that's why the summer plan resonated. It was brighter and bolder. I did a little shopping at the sale today and definitely knowing the plan helped me to decide what to buy and what to leave behind. YES YES

  2. I'm grateful! Thanks for the kind words, and for letting me see how my work was useful for you. Hugs all around!

    1. LOL - keep watching. I have more plans for using your wonderful info. It's making me feel grounded and providing a very clear path for moving forward and at the same time leaving enough room for me to personalize the process. It's great.


Thanks for commenting. I appreciate the feedback and the creative conversation.