Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Wardrobe Analysis Update

The wardrobe saga continues thusly ... I didn't take a photo every day (I keep forgetting!) but here's what I did manage to photograph:

I think I wore this on last last Tuesday (??) to work:

It's a repeat of the cardigan but I haven't worn this skirt for a while.  Believe it or not, I probably purchased this skirt in 1997 from Urban Outfitters.  And it's still in good condition, despite heavy rotation in the late 90's.

And I wore this to work on last last Friday (the 15th):

I dug out this sweater that was a gift from T. back when I first moved to France in 2008.  I didn't have any cold weather clothes (as I moved from Hawai'i) so he gave me this.  I haven't worn it all that much because I feel like it tends to look matronly with most of my clothes, but I feel like it works pretty well with this outfit.  The scarf is another Indira gift.

And on last last Saturday (the 16th) I wore this outfit (including a sneak preview of a new finished object, yay!) swing dancing in Tours:

As for the other days of the week, I remember that on one day I wore the same sweater as seen on Wed. the 6th, but with a black t-shirt underneath and the pants pictured above.  And on another day I wore my seersucker dress (pictured below on the 25th) with the purple sweater seen above.  And for the third missing work day, I can't really remember what I wore...

The rest of my outfits were:

On Monday the 18th, to work:

On Tuesday the 19th, to work:

On Wednesday the 20th, to work:

On Thursday the 21st, to bum around Paris and then to swing dance in the evening:

And, on Friday the 22nd, to work.  It was cold!

On Sunday the 24th, to the grocery store and around the house.  I wore nearly the same thing on Saturday; only the shirt was different:

On this Monday the 25th, to work, but with boots and not slippers!

And finally, today Tuesday the 26th, to work I wore a newish RTW sweater and a new RTW shirt:

Phew!  I notice a definite trend with the same four sweaters, but that's really what I've got!!

Friday, February 22, 2013

Renfrew Top

Surprise, I actually finished something!  I was hoping to get better photos of my Renfrew top, but these will have to do.  I've already worn it twice since completion last Saturday.  I really need to make half a dozen variations; I love it.

The first time I wore it out, mere hours after the last stitch was stitched, was to go swing dancing in Tours last Saturday:

Here I am in my kitchen before leaving.  As you can see, I'm very excited to be going out!

And the second time I wore it was yesterday, to a day-trip to Paris.  I wore it with a sweater because it was cold and windy!  But I took off the sweater for the purposes of the photo.  And I had a terrible look on my face because of the cold and the wind, so I cropped out my face. :P

I think perhaps I could've gone down a size because there's some wrinkling along the bust and in back.  Plus there quite a bit of fabric pooling at the lower back.  But I was worried about it being too small.  I don't like things super clingy and the fabric is very drapey.

Am I correctly interpreting the wrinkles?  Does that mean there's too much fabric there??  But the fit in the shoulders is spot-on.  Can one do an SBA in jersey and is it worth the effort?

The fabric is a bamboo stretch jersey from Ray-Stitch and it was challenging to cut out.  The fabric did not want to settle down straight when I laid it out for cutting.

But the sewing part went pretty smoothly.  I did have to re-do the cowl because I didn't check for errata beforehand and so I followed the instructions to the letter even though I thought it seemed odd.  I figured there was going to be some cool trick at the end, but no, the instructions were just the opposite of what they were supposed to be for that step. 

I sewed it entirely on my mediocre Singer sewing machine.  I finished the seams w/ a zig-zag stitch.  Seems okay so far.  My machine struggled occasionally, but no more so than with any other project.

I bought other jersey fabric from Ray-Stitch at the same time as this blue fabric, but it's a thicker, stabler jersey.

I think it doesn't want to be a Renfrew though.  I think it wants to be a dress.  Of course I didn't buy enough yardage for a dress, so I'm waiting for the coffers to be replenished in March before I buy the rest of the needed fabric. 

I think I'm a knit-convert.  No ironing: yay!!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Burda Jacket: It's *Nearly* Finished

I thought I'd give you an update on my jacket. It's nearly finished. I just have the button placket to install.

Front view:

Back view:

So, I'm on the home stretch, except that I also have to redo the collar because it's not sitting correctly.

Here's the proof:

When you take out some of the extra fabric inside, the collar lays better, so I guess that's what I'll be doing:

I previously had to redo some of the lining because I discovered it wasn't quite large enough when I was finishing the hem.  I just made the seam allowances smaller in a couple places, like so:

The old seam allowance is glaringly obvious, but I'm not worried about it. I don't think people will be inspecting the inside of the jacket. :)

I can't lie, I will be happy when this project is over. It's taking forever!!

Sunday, February 10, 2013

A Continuation of What I *Actually* Wear

Soooo, I forgot to take photos two days in a row. But I do remember what I wore. Both days were mainly black, and both were head-to-toe Ready-to-Wear.

In addition, most of my photos were taken at the end of a long work day (say around 10pm). But at least T. volunteered to take them so I don't have to futz with the mirror shot.

Without further ado, here's the rest of this week's outfits.

On Wednesday the 6th: worn to teach.

Sorry for the headless shot and the poor lighting, it was the best I could do at the time! The sweater is one of my hand knits. And the dress is sorely in need of refashioning. The fact that I even wore it is testimony to how few options I have. I think it wants to be remade into a pencil skirt, but I have several things I need to finish up before I get to that. Overall I think that this outfit is terrible, but I was pretty desperate!

On Thursday the 7th: worn to teach.

This is an outfit I wear often. The cardigan is also hand knit by me, finished only a few months ago. For some reason I feel like this outfit works, even though the color combo is perhaps a bit odd.

On Friday the 8th: also, worn to teach.

The green top is me-made. This is the first time I put together this outfit, again out of desperation. And frankly I think it's a complete fail and I won't be repeating it. That red sweater has always been too big and it's looking pretty shabby for only being 15 months old. I thought maybe the belt would save it, but no, it just looks ridiculous. Anyhow, moving on...

On Saturday the 9th: and, worn to teach.

Everything is RTW, except the hat. The top is only a few months old, as well as the boots. The pants are not even a year old and yet they are already faded, more faded than the sweater which is 3 years old and has seen lots of wear. But now I hate, hate, hate that sweater. In fact I dragged it out of the 'to-be-donated' pile because I had nothing that worked with this outfit except possibly the red sweater, which I also hate and I had worn just the day before. Nonetheless, despite my hatred, I feel like this outfit works. But that sweater is going back in the donation box, so I need to find a RTW replacement. I just don't want to knit a plain sweater with black yarn, how boring!!

On Sunday the 10th, the outfit was a repeat of this one, except with jeans:

I wore it to the grocery store and to the movies. We saw Lincoln. :) I liked it; pretty typical Spielberg, for the good and the bad. But Daniel Day-Lewis was awesome, as always. I did not recognize James Spader though. My jaw nearly dropped when his name came up on the credits and I had to consult IMDB to figure out who he played! My guess was off-base.

Anyhow, so that's where I am in my outfits. I am making no effort whatsoever to wear me-made stuff and yet I have done so regularly so far simply because that's what I have in my closet that I'm willing to wear (and is appropriate)!

I am really just trying to get dressed in the morning in a way that's appropriate for my daily activities. My choices seem limited. I know already that this week I'll be wearing my striped sweater again, as well as the turquoise one. And surely either the bordeaux-colored one or the purpley cardigan. I guess I could look at it positively: I have a capsule wardrobe! Unfortunately, it's not one I coherently planned! Maybe I have more spring/summer stuff that I'm willing to wear???

Sunday, February 3, 2013

A New Endeavor...Documenting What I *Actually* Wear

I've been inspired by these blog posts about re-evaluating one's wardrobe and style. And I decided to do something I had heretofore resisted: take daily outfit photos. I am so not a fashion/style blogger and I am not approaching it from that angle (as the photos below will leave you in no doubt!). I simply want to have concrete data about how often I wear certain pieces. I have suspicions that I recycle the same 7 things every week. Maybe 10 max. I think this will help me plan not only for future projects, but also re-evaluate how well certain items hold up to wear and tear. If I wear my turquoise sweater (see photo below) as often as I think I do, then I am even more impressed by Rowan's wool quality.

I'm certain that various pieces get worn simply because I don't have a good alternative. Nevertheless it's telling that I'm willing to wear those articles of clothing instead of others hanging in my closet/stuffed in my drawers.

I'm taking these for myself and I have no idea for how long I'll continue the experiment. I suspect that it would be useful to do it at least for one month in every season. I don't know that I'll share with you all the photos...maybe a bi-weekly round-up post, but frankly I don't think it's all that interesting, especially since I'm not staging the photos. I'm just taking 'em whenever I get the chance, whatever I look like. ;)

Nonetheless, here are the first two, just to be official-like:

Feb. 2, 2013 ('cuz I wasn't organized enough to start on the first! ha!):

I wore this to teach on Saturday morning and I wore it for the rest of the day. The sweater is hand-knit by me and the rest is RTW. I think I could use the pants as a good block for straight-leg/skinny pants one day.

Feb. 3, 2013:

I wore this to the grocery store on Sunday (today) and then around the house the rest of the day. The sweater is hand-knit by me and the shirt is a me-made Burda pattern that is now reserved to only going under things. The rest is RTW, except I did wear my new Dolce Slouch hat, seen perched on top of my jacket in the background. Check out my fun scarf that I got from Indira's generous donation!

I look terrible here 'cuz I feel bleepin' terrible! I have yet another winter cold. Blech.

I know that I already wore the striped sweater at least once this week (on Monday) and the blue sweater as well (but I forget which day).

Anyhow, I am also planning on joining in on some blog-world stash-busting action, but I'd like to come up with a realistic plan before I go official on that. ;)