28 Feb Kari’s Core Wardrobe Mini-Capsule: From Sketch to Finished!
In my last guest blog post, I shared how I used my body model croquis to wittle down my 24 looks I was interested in to three outfits that I definitely wanted to tackle for a little mini capsule of basics. My goal was to work on altering the fit of some potentially “tried and true” patterns. To my surprise, when Erica checked in on my progress, I had actually made most of them. MyBodyModel is already changing my sewing game! It’s leading me to actually make what I plan without getting distracted by something else – Almost! You’ll see…
Look 1: Kalle Shirtdress
This garment is now beloved to me. I LOVE wearing it, especially since it was such a pain to sew. I used Black cupro from Topstitch, elongated the dress as much as my yardage would allow and levelled out the hem. I had worked with this fabric before, but for some reason this time it all went awry and every piece seemed to grow. Also, turns out there IS a right and a wrong side (“face palm”). But that’s why sewing clothes is the best…only YOU know these things. Each little compliment I get heals my sewing wounds and makes me cherish this piece that much more.
Look 2: Ginger Jeans, Alabama Chanin Cardigan, Lark Tee
This was my “I LOVE all these pieces separately but NOT together” outfit.
First, my Ginger Jeans that I wear EVERYDAY! I used Cone Mills Black S Gene from Topstitch. Ladies…run, do not walk, to get your hands on this denim. It feels like I’m wearing leggings. Great stretch and so comfy. I made these while I was teaching a jeans making weekend and I kept telling my students I could wear my Gingers to a yoga class, they are that comfortable. My favorite part is that I hid some Alexander Henry “Bathing Beauties” in the pocket stays. It makes me so happy when I see it. My efforts spent altering my Gingers pattern for fit were a huge success! I’ve never had a pair of pants fit this good.
This look also included the coziest duster ever. I used the Cardigan pattern from Alabama Chanin, but sewed it with a machine instead of by hand. The grey & white rib knit is from an amazing gem of a fabric reseller here in Atlanta. I even took the time to pattern match my stripes! Oooohh!
My Lark Tee was also successful in that I made some alterations to the Lark to better suit my body. It was my first time “slashing & spreading”. All in all I really like the pieces individually, but realized I will NEVER wear all 3 together. I tried them all on and it just didn’t work for me. Throwing on a comfy black tank was much better and then I lounged in this outfit for the rest of the day.
Look 3: Morgan Jeans and… Detour! Opium Coat
So I was SUPPOSED to make a pair of Morgan jeans and an In the Folds Ruffle top, but then that beautiful Opium coat was released by Deer & Doe and I was like “Squirrel!” All current sewing plans stopped and I had to jump in. Luckily, I had already finished my Morgans in some cheap denim I sourced locally.
It’s the 2nd pair of Morgans I’ve made and that fit still eludes me. I know I have to make them a little smaller because the denim stretches out, but I just get too afraid of making them TOO small. I like the leg fit, but they just won’t stay up. I’m teaching another jeans weekend in January so I will take another crack at it.
Apparently, coats are an annoying thing for me to fit for my body too. I didn’t do any sketching on my body model croquis, and I wish I had. I have to make sure I shorten everything in the pattern stage (like 4-6”), I even took out some of the swing so it didn’t swallow me. The wool & lining was from my favorite fabric gem mentioned above. It probably cost me $10 total in fabric so I didn’t feel bad experimenting with the fit. I also learned that there is such a thing as a shoulder adjustment (though not soon enough).The raglan shoulders on this coat do not work on my hunched shoulders, which I will have to start noting in my croquis planning stage. How can we get MyBodyModel to take into account how much I hunch over from sitting at the computer? (haha wink wink)
All in all, this was such a fruitful exercise and connected a lot of dots between what I like in a picture and what actually works or what I will actually wear in practice. It has been fun to see my sketches come to life. I have really enjoyed the start to finish process of it all and look forward to taking this approach with my 2019 Make Nine plans.
Here is my #makenine2019 sketched out using my body model croquis:
1. Self drafted tunic with #robertkaufmanB&W windowpane from @topstitchatl
2. @chalkandnotch #fringedress in @cottonandsteel
3. Self drafted & block printed top, @elbe_textiles #fremantlepants
4. @closetcasepatterns #kalleshirtdress with long sleeves in chambray
5. Still undecided pattern cardigan in @atelierbrunette double gauze with @topstitchatl #conemills #gingerjeans
6. Black knit @sewhouse7 #toastersweater& @cashmerette #amesjeans
7. Black linen @grainlinestudio#grainlinehadley & @theavidseamstress #citytrousers in J crew deadstock from @matchpointfabric
8. Self drafted top with @frenchnavynow_#calyerpants
9. @theavidseamstress #daydress in linen stripe
I’m continuing to dig in on neutral basics this year & continuing to work on pant fitting. I’m also planning to make a couple self drafted garments, and finally completing a moulange for myself. …As long as I don’t get distracted!
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Kari is a textiles designer specializing in block printing linen for the interior design trade. She also teaches sewing at Topstitch Studio & Lounge, a modern sewing shop specializing in garment sewing. Kari has a Master’s degree in Interior Design from Florida State University. Her textiles are sold nationwide & have been featured in several shelter magazines such as Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles, Lonny, & Martha Stewart Living. She has been sewing since she was a little girl and is experienced in sewing all things home decor, namely pillows, table linens and drapery. Garment sewing, knitting, & teaching are her passions when not block printing. She especially likes sewing for her mini model, her daughter, Orly. You can find her on Instagram @karimadethis and @karidesigns.