Category Archives: wardrobe planning

Cut & Paste


I have to believe that anyone into personal style who also loves to sew has the box of clothing items they just can’t seem to part with because you know you could [fill in the blank] and it would be perfect! My issue with said box is it basically turns into a black hole where ideas go to die and clothes never see the light of day. For this reason, I decided to put ALL my clothing into my closet and move things I’d worn to one end as I went. After a couple months, I reviewed my wardrobe board and did a (dare I say) final sort of items into 3 categories:

  • love = hang back in the closet
  • meh = donate/sell
  • love but don’t wear because xyz = project box

Keeping the love but don’t wear items in my closet was only complicating getting dressed, obviously, so I decided to snap a quick picture of each piece before returning them to the black hole. Next I used Photoshop Elements to create 8 1/2 x 11″ layouts, printed and cut them out to glue into my wardrobe/sewing journal.


Now I can flip through my journal when I’m feeling the urge to shop and prioritize a project. Drawing in some grids gives me a clean space for jotting down notes for each. Many need mending, fit alterations, dyeing, or restyling, and others I’d like to knock off the pattern or sew/purchase a new item to go with it. I do realize I could have completed some mending in the time I used to play cut and paste, but there’s 33 projects so in the long run I feel it’s worth the couple hours to keep them all on my radar and moving forward.






I made it look so fun, my kiddo immediately asked for some clothes for his own project and we spent the best Saturday morning creating together!


I’m so grateful for the online sewing and personal style community. Though I’ve been doing things like this for as long as I can remember, I now know I’m not a total weirdo and others out there share my obsession interests!

Next on the agenda is some actual time at the sewing machine. I still have #2017makenine to finish and one of those projects has been cut and on my table for longer than I’d care to admit…


#2017MAKENINE: 1 & 2

01-15-17 midi skirt featured

Happy New Year! Starting the year strong, jumping into #2017makenine on Instagram last week and managing to complete my first two projects already. One was just mending and the other was already in the works, but that was intentional to get momentum for the more tedious projects to come so I’m still feeling proud of myself.

01-15-17 sewing journal

Since I’d already started a bullet journal specifically for sewing and worked out my silhouettes and, therefore, types of pieces I wanted to sew to create them, coming up with my nine projects was quick and easy.

My Nine

01-10-17 #2017makenine

  1. Alabama Chanin inspired applique shirt
  2. Wide leg pants
  3. Lightweight knee length jacket
  4. M7473 tunic (View D)
  5. Schnittchen Anna dress
  6. Pullover woven top
  7. Colorblocked statement jacket using B6328 View C
  8. Midi skirt
  9. Mend thrifted cashmere sweater

Project #1

01-15-17 visible mendingI’ve had a drawer filled with mending for a while, but when I snagged this short sleeved baby blue cashmere sweater from the thrift store, it immediately earned a spot at the top of the pile. It had a little hole right near the neckline and I was interested in finally trying my hand at visible mending. My first attempt was horrendous. I pulled it out and gave it another go and this was the result. I don’t think it’s perfect and I’ll probably revisit it once I’ve had some more practice and master it, but for now I like how it looks…and no more hole!

Project 2: Midi Skirt

01-15-17 midi skirt full frontThis fabric is from a skirt I found thrifting, 100% cotton, made in Nepal and so beautiful. The original skirt was horribly unflattering so the entire thing was deconstructed and a brand new pattern was cut in order to start from scratch. The only original bit is the hem.01-15-17 midi skirt backIt’s a basic rectangular skirt with a straight waistband, carefully gathered and pleated to control where the bulk sits. I pinned 5 times before finally sewing the waistband into place. There are some puckers making me wish I’d interfaced the entire thing but then it probably would have been too bulky, so oh well.01-15-17 midi skirt front detail I hadn’t sewn a zipper forever so I was happy with how nicely it went in, although I’m not sure I aligned it with the upper edge properly. I think I may have done the waistband overlap wrong too, but I was sewing without instructions and it looks and feels okay on so I’m not stressing over that either.

01-15-17 midi skirt back detailI’m just thrilled to have a skirt in my wardrobe at last! This is the only one I own right now and as you can see in my journal above, it’s the silhouette I’m most obsessed with right now.01-15-17 midi skirt front

Based on the current weather and how long the jacket has been on my wish list, I should prioritize that next but I don’t have all the fabric yet so we’ll see what actually hits the machine!

Sorting the Stash

Ever since clearing my home of all the extra stuff that didn’t “spark joy,” I knew I needed to do the same with my fabric stash. Well, after sewing up that top I shared in my last post, I was so excited to make clothes that I ran out and bought 4 new patterns. Then that night I was so anxious to get started, I jumped online and started shopping for the perfect fabrics to sew them up with. And then around midnight I clicked over to my Pinterest boards and was quickly reminded to slooooow down (Thankfully, before pulling the trigger on any purchases). Note to self: I’m not in this to scoop up all the new and shiny things or to finish projects quickly.

I want to deconstruct and reconstruct clothing I’ve saved, piece together special bits I’ve collected from flea markets, play with natural dye, print, stitch, create surfaces and turn them into wearable things.

The problem was my fabric stash wasn’t sorted in a way that lent itself to this endeavor so I didn’t realize just how many worthy pieces I had. I got to sorting using the KonMari approach of pulling out every single bit of fabric I own (including everything on my refashion rack) and throwing it into one giant pile, then holding one piece in my hands at a time to see if it sparked joy. No’s went into (a total of 10!) paper grocery bags without a second thought and Yes’s were tossed into two separate piles based on whether I’d wear it or not. The only exceptions were a few pieces of yardage I knew would work great for muslins before cutting into similar but more precious fabrics.


What a difference! There was a clear visual divide between the two resulting piles. A rainbow of lace, burlap, fur and tulle along with sweet prints like teeny polka dots, hearts, stripes, and vintage florals went into drawers for dolls and soft sculpture. It’s my inner little girls dream. Lots of pretty, playful, pink and pastels. Then there are my stacks of wardrobe fabrics with a toned down earthy palette, mostly devoid of pinks, reds and purples. Lots of blues, greens, browns and whites with rich bohemian prints, a wide array of textures and plenty of soft comfy knits.

My vision is becoming more and more clear and with my Pinterest boards for reference and my materials sorted, visible and accessible, it’s going to be much easier to plan out new projects and maximize this gorgeous stash I already own. I’ve also photographed and uploaded all of my clothing into the Stylebook ap on my phone so I’m able to flip through what I have when planning new items to think about how it will work into my existing wardrobe. I think I’ll end up writing a post with more on that later because at the same time, I did a quick assessment of how many pieces were handmade, thrifted, ethical or fast fashion and it’s something I’d like to document to show where I started at the beginning of this long journey.

Getting Creative in My Closet


I’ve been trying to squeeze in some creativity wherever I can and revamping my wardrobe became my main focus for a minute…borderline obsession, actually. It all started when I discovered the blog Into Mind and her process for defining your style and curating the perfect wardrobe. Having left a corporate office environment for my new life as a mommy and artist, I was left with only a handful of items in my closet that I’d actually have a reason to wear, but since this was new territory I was worried I’d run out and buy the wrong things without a little planning. That’s when I started googling things like “new wardrobe from scratch” and found the site.

So while my little guy nursed and napped on my lap all day I spent time with a notebook and my iPad making lists and gathering images then editing and curating my final mood board. Since I studied fashion design and have always loved lists, organizing, creating mood boards and anything visual, it was right up my alley and I had a lot of fun with it.

What I ended up with is a defined style concept to guide my shopping while I basically create the new me! I’m addicted to thrift shopping so none of this led to spending a fortune but it helped me choose wisely even when items were only a few bucks. Being a textile artist, I have to be cautious because I’ll be drawn to clothing that I won’t actually wear because of a pattern, color or texture that’s more applicable to my art than my wardrobe. That being said, I do love wearing color and pattern so deciding on a color pallete and knowing which types of pieces should have pattern ensures I’ll have lots of ways to mix and match everything requiring fewer total items in my closet.

Of course my husband humored me each evening when I’d go on about my progress with this project, but it feels fitting to share it here in my creative space. The way we dress is just another way we express ourselves to the world and as an artist it feels especially important to be able to wake up each day and quickly throw on something that works for my daily activities but also makes me feel creative and inspired! So here’s what I came up with, adapting Into Mind’s 7 category style concept.



earthy rainbow, color & pattern mixing, laid back layers, oversized & drapey, feminine, natural fibers, artistic, elements of nature, neutrals with pops of color, lace, brown leather, eclectic, rustic, vintage floral, combined textures, geometric shapes

Color Pallete

gray, navy, white, beige, olive, mauve, burnt orange, mustard, turqoise

Key Pieces

loose tees, casual button down, slouchy knits, skinny jeans/tights, flowy dress/skirt, boots, moccasins


loose top/flowy dress + skinnies/tights + boots/moccasins + slouchy knit/army jacket

Ever since going through this process, I’ve LOVED my outfits every day and shopping feels so much simpler! If you’ve ever looked in your closet and had nothing to wear, this process is worth every minute…or maybe I just had too much time on my hands and went a little OCD!