Time to S.W.A.P.!

I’ve been seriously considering a S.W.A.P. (Sewing with a plan) ever since I read Carolyn’s (Diary of a Sewing Fanatic) posts on her S.W.A.P. and viewed the outcome for myself. I was so inspired when I read the Timmel Fabrics article on constructing a coordinating wardrobe. I thought to myself, Well, here’s an idea! Sewing articles of clothing that actually go together and make a complete collection. If you’re like me, you have sewn many separate pieces that don’t match the rest of your wardrobe. In and of themselves, they’re fine, but it’s hard to coordinate them with other pieces.

Well, at long last, I have decided to start my own S.W.A.P. of eleven garments for a fall/winter work wardrobe. I had thought about entering the Pattern Review contest, but I just didn’t think I’d have time (13 weeks) to complete the project, and I didn’t want to be rushed.

I will be following the plan as it is laid out in the said article. My wardrobe will consist of eleven garments: two pairs of pants; two skirts, one in a solid color, one in a print or check; two simple tops, one solid, one in the above print; four tops in colors that coordinate with the solids; and one jacket in a solid color.

The patterns I have chosen so far are:

New Look 6735 Top (for two tops)

McCall’s 5523 Skirt (I’m not sure which view yet)McCall’s 4924 SkirtSimplicity 3686 Pants (one of each in different fabrics)
Simplicy 3828 Purse. I thought I’d throw an accessory in there as well, either the first or second row views.

I still need to find some more simple top/blouse patterns. If ya’ll have any ideas, let me know.

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  1. I’m a SWAP girl and I always encourage others to try it because it brings direction to your sewing. I really like your plan. If I may, a word of advice ~ sew some of the pieces and then think about how you want to wear them…the blouse or top patterns will then come to you naturally. I will be checking back to see how your SWAP is coming along. You are going to love your finished garments!

  2. Tumblina,

    Thanks for your comments and helpful tips! So far I have bought fabric for my pants, the jacket, and one skirt. I’m thinking about a knit for the other skirt and top, and haven’t yet decided about the other tops. I don’t think I’ll be joining in on the Timmel contest either, but I like to visit the site to get ideas and inspiration. I may join the next PR contest next summer, or when ever they have it again.

    I hope this isn’t the last time you drop by.

    Happy sewing!

  3. Good luck with the Plan! I tried this for the first time last summer with the PatternReview Wardrobe Contest, knowing that I wouldn’t be able to do it all in the time allotted – but I found being part of the contest was really inspiring, and kept me thinking and creating on a continual basis. Hmm, don’t have time to deal with that zipper? The next pattern needs to be cut out. Got 3 white things planned? Do them at the same time to take advantage of already-threaded machine, and alternate the tough bits with the easy bits. I utterly surprised myself by making the equivalent of about 10 items in that time (just some of them happened to be alterations, or things outside the plan, so they didn’t count for the contest!).

    Winter isn’t a good time for me to join the Timmel contest, but I think I might just make up a plan and sew along with them as if I were a part of it – it was so energizing last time!


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