In mid January, my husband and I beat it out of Baltimore and headed to Key West, Florida for six weeks. Like 65% of American office workers, we’ve been home for the last year and just needed a change of scenery. My in-laws live 60% of the year in Key West and now consider it their primary residence, but came back to Maryland in June 2020 with no intention of going back until they are both vaccinated. We took advantage of the rent free condo in the new year, took a few days to drive down and played summer home for a month in mid winter.
This last year I’ve sewn with a particular focus on plugging wardrobe holes, defining my personal style and sewing from a coordinated color palette. I’ve learned so much about me during the process using the following books: Curated Closet, Triumph of Individual Style and the Your Color Style color palette.
While I’ve been sewing these clothes, I wasn’t wearing them much because they seemed too nice to wear inside? So I brought them down with me to Florida. I can say after being one with 75% of spring/summer wardrobe, I’m really happy with the changes I’ve made.
I have separates and my clothes coordinate! Prior to this, I regularly sewed orphans and always felt like I didn’t have the right thing to wear. I’d have lots of dresses but nothing when I needed casual. I’d have jeans but no slacks. I’d have formal but no cocktail. It would be hot and my clothes weren’t for the right temperatures. This just wasn’t really a problem for me this time. I found color and outfit combos I hadn’t expected, just because I made myself sew from a strict color palette.
What I can improve:
Well, turns out I like olive a lot, lol. I’m taking Cool White out of my Main Color palette because I’m just never going to make a white predominate outfit. Both white and black fall within my Bright, Cool, Deep color palette and I consider them neutrals — meant to support my wardrobe than be a star. So olive is now a Main Color and Cool White is a neutral.
I really like monochromatic looks, but not high intensity monochromatic and definitely not perfectly matched monochromatic. I want to dress this way using the hue, but varying the intensity.
I’ve been using a regular old color wheel to help me think of ways to mix and match my wardrobe (I do have clothes I made before I started this journey) but I think I’m going to invest in one specifically for my coloring.
I’d like to get better at adding a third color from my accents that give an extra OOMPH. I was very focused on my mainstay garments that I didn’t add much in yellow, orange, powder blue or aubergine. For me, those accent colors mean I have details or garments in those colors, they just aren’t the base of my colors.
Sewing styles better suited to my build: cinched and snatched waists, sticking with scoop neck because it’s my best, getting my length proportions right.
Pants that aren’t flowy. I’ve deeply enjoyed having loose and comfy summer pants, but they won’t help me in the winter or when I need to dress up. I’ve been avoiding pants because I don’t like how they look on me, but am drawn to pants looks and quite frankly need the versatility.
Skirts for summer. I don’t wear shorts and I’m not interested in trying (my thighs rub and that ride up is not cute in shorts). But, I am interested in summer skirts to build out my wardrobe and have a shorts alternative.
WINTER IS COMING
Since we left during the coldest months, I wasn’t sewing or thinking about my winter wardrobe. If I needed to take winter clothes with me, I’d have had maybe four items total. While I made a few of the items from my “Call My Agent” influenced wardrobe (Vogue cape, four pairs of Jalie Renee ponte pants), I didn’t get through it (fair trade off for getting away). Some of those items will become Spring sewing and mostly high contrast black and white.
In 2021 I’m going to plan my winter wardrobe starting in late summer and that will include knitting a few sweaters, two pairs of wool pants and sewing more items for layers. My number of layers is somewhere between zero and one. I’d like some cargo style jackets, jacket-like toppers and maybe some long sleeveless vests.
I know my wardrobe won’t be solved in a year or even two. I consider this a long-term plan and overhaul and look forward to what’s next! What I do know is this is the most comfortable I’ve felt about my clothes in years and years. I don’t want to buy any new fabric just yet (famous last words) and have enough in my stash to work through for this year. I might be missing more fun and jazzy pieces, but they will come in time.