Tag Archives: sewing

The Fall Palette Challenge

7 Sep

I have been trying to become a seamstress for a long time. My husband bought me a sewing machine the first Christmas we were together, and I immediately bought some Made by Wendy blouse patterns and crappy Wal-Mart quilting cottons and tried my hand at it. And it was awful. Really bad. The fit sucked, the fabrics puckered and wrinkled everywhere, and I gave up on garment sewing for a long, long time.

But as I’ve become more and more interested in fashion–really, as I’ve become interested in wearing more than t-shirts and jeans–I’ve also come to find some damn talented seamstresses and seamsters online. About a year ago, I discovered Gertie’s blog, and with it, vintage fashions, the concept of pattern fitting, and a whole world of wardrobe possibilities. She also introduced me to Colette Patterns, an independent pattern company based in Portland that produces the most beautiful vintage-inspired patterns in a wide range of sizes. I ordered Crepe and Macaron with the idea of joining Gertie’s Crepe Sew-Along and then progressing to a Macaron once I’d gained some confidence on my machine. And then I didn’t do it. I bought fabric and notions. I followed the Sew-Along quite closely. At some point I decided that the Crepe wouldn’t look good on my body–I still believe this, more in another post–and so my new, beautiful patterns joined their abandoned cousins in a box in my office.

And then, at very beginning of this summer, I spent two weeks out of town housesitting for my mom, and in my lonely state, I decided to buy some fabric for the Macaron, and just to try it. I had a little money, I had tons of time, and, for some reason, I suddenly had balls.

The Macaron turned out great–I’ll try to get pictures of it soon–and since then, I’ve been pretty psyched about sewing for myself. I’ve also made a Ginger out of denim, which is a welcome addition to my wardrobe. And now, I’ve come to believe that I can sew for my body, and so, we arrive at the point of this post: I am going to sew myself a mini wardrobe for the fall as part of Colette Patterns’ Fall Palette Challenge.

So, without further ado, I present my plan for the Fall Palette Challenge:


My palette is based on my ongoing love affair with navy, mustard, and gray, rounded out with black, because who doesn’t love black, and teal, because I needed another pop of color. My pattern choices are largely economical: I already own Ginger, Violet, and Parfait, and Sorbetto is available for free and endlessly customizable, as proved by The Sew Weekly’s inspiring Mena Trott. I’m super psyched about Colette’s fall line, so I’ll also be sewing up Peony and Jasmine. And everybody needs a good jacket, and I love a challenge–at least I love thinking about a challenge–so I’ll be rounding out my wardrobe with Burdastyle’s Nadine. I plan on doing the plus-size modifications to take some of the pouf out.

So, now all I need to do is buy some fabric and get crackin’! Here’s a rough schedule:

Week 1, September 5-11: Sorbetto Top

Week 2, September 12-18: Parfait Dress

Week 3, September 19-25: Ginger Skirt #1

Week 4, September 26-October 2: Violet Top

Week 5, October 3-9: Jasmine Top

Week 6, October 10-16: Peony Dress

Week 7, October 17-23: Ginger Skirt #2

Week 8, October 24-31: Nadine Jacket

I’m so excited! Check back soon for this week’s Sorbetto, and wish me good luck!