I recently did a pretty sizable closet clean out. We rent an old house (built in 1925) and although it’s had a fair share of updates, the closets are just tiny. I decided to take on this task for multiple reasons – 1. I LOVE organizing, 2. space was feeling very limited, and 3. I knew I wasn’t wearing everything I owned.
I donated over five bags of clothes, sold some shoes and purses, and found new homes for my vintage items I can’t part with yet. My closet feels really good now and the process allowed me to identify the types and styles of garments I wear most often, AND what I should focus on making this year.
Even though I’ve only been sewing for three years and some change, I never went through that phase of making fancy dresses, or using exciting novelty fabrics. I always went into a project knowing that I wanted whatever I was making to be worn often and to speak to my overall aesthetic of neutrals and geometric patterns. I don’t want my garments to look handmade and I want items to mix and match easily.
Enter simple tops! Part of my 2018 making plans is to use patterns such as Shirt No. 1, Lou Box Top, and the Maya Top to build a collection of coordinating shirts out of silk noil, linen, and ikat. These patterns are also a great canvas for block printing.
Pattern: Shirt No. 1 by 100 Acts of Sewing
Fabric: Silk Noil in Caramel from Stonemountain
Last weekend I was able to finish the first top for this goal. I decided to use the smallest size even though my bust measurement put me in between a S and M. I was hoping the XS would achieve a slightly more fitted look but still maintain the pattern’s relaxed silhouette.
The size choice overall feels good, but there is some slight pulling on the shoulder seams that I’d like to get rid of on the next one. I’m not entirely sure how I’ll accomplish that.
I had a brief moment when I first started sewing where I wanted to achieve an entirely me-made closet. I don’t want that. I do want to have mostly me-made and secondhand, with a dash of investment pieces from boss women makers, like Elizabeth Suzann, and ethical companies like Nisolo.
My new Shirt No. 1 pairs nicely with my ES Clyde Jacket in clay cotton canvas, no?