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February = Pink


February = Pink

You may disagree, as Red is definitely a nose-to-nose competitor.  But, Red has so many other times where it is in the spotlight- in December with Red and Green, and in the United States, both May and July are saturated with Red, White and Blue.  There is also the long shot of Purple, with Amethyst being the birthstone.  Sorry, Purple, but I give Pink the spotlight in February.  It's just what we in the northern hemisphere need to brighten up the short cloudy days of the shortest of months.

So, for February, I needed to make something pink, and I found this beautiful "dragonfruit" pink silk at Fabric Mart. I didn't know exactly what I wanted to make with such a luscious fabric, and went back and forth several times on what it would eventually become.  I was sooo tempted to make a dress with it, but I knew that if I made a dress, it would be something that would languish in the closet, worn only once in a blue moon.  I really wanted to make this into something that would be wearable in an everyday casual setting, not hidden away waiting for a special occasion!  So, I decided to make a "casual" silk top.  Is that an oxymoron?  I hope not!  I really want it to be a thing.  I know that I won't be doing the dishes, or digging in the garden in my "casual" silk top, but I do think that I can wear it at home, at work, doing light office work or watching TV!

Winter Capsule Wardrobe Wrap-Up



I've been working on my First Frost Winter Wardrobe capsule for 3 months, and I can happily say that it is done! 
- 4 woven tops (here and here)
- 2 sleeveless tunics (here)
- 3 turtlenecks
- 2 cowl necks (Bellavista Tops) (here)
- 2 long vests (here)
- 1 dress (here)
- 1 coat (here)

 = 15 pieces

Whew!  That works out to be a little over 1 item a week.  I honestly feel like I've just ran a marathon.  Someone needs to design a bumper sticker for people who can make it to the finish line of homemade wardrobe capsules!  Of course, this random number of items was my own doing- you can make capsule wardrobes with many less pieces.  Since I started this back in November, some pieces have already been worn quite a bit.  And I anticipate that I'll continue to wear them all through February, and possibly some chilly days in March. But from what I've done so far, here are the winners and losers:

Most Worn- Dusty Lavender Duffle Coat (of course, I can wear it with everything!)  I get lots of compliments on the color too.

Least Worn- Teal Silk Blouse- I just wore it to a couple of holiday functions.  But, I kind of expected that.  The blouse is just fine, I just need a fancier life.

Least Loved- The Solid Sueded Polyester Blouses.  Love the colors, hate the fabric.  Even though this fabric is all polyester, it still wrinkles like the devil.  And, because they are solid, they show every stain! I can't drop a crumb on them without a spot showing up.  Grrr.  I really wish that I had used a nice cotton flannel.  I keep falling for these synthetic fabrics.  Overall, they are way better than they used to be, but not this one. 

Most Loved-  I would have to say the Pink Boiled Wool Sleeveless Tunic.  I love the way the dye is kind of mottled, and the boiled wool is just awesome.  My first time working with boiled wool, and it won't be the last.

Miss Congeniality- Grey Wool Waterfall Vest.  It really gets along well with everything.   The fabric is warm without being bulky.

Best All Around Pattern- Okay, we have to have a tie for this category because I can't choose.

Butterick 6389- I made the turtleneck tops and the waterfall vest from it.  I am definitely making this one again...and again... and again.
AND
Itch to Stitch's Bellavista Top.  Love this style, love that I didn't have to do any other alterations other than lengthening it, and love Itch to Stitch's instructions.   Win, win, win!

Essential Gray Pieces

When I started this adventure of my capsule wardrobe, I picked out fabrics from my stash that I thought would look pretty together in a particular color palette.  And my neutral component was gray.  I realize that you have to have balance and it helps to soothe the eye to have a nice neutral.  One day last year when I was quite happy wearing what I thought was a nice Spring outfit with lavender and pink and turquoise, a 15 year old respectfully told me- "Mrs. Brodsky, you can't wear ALL the colors at once."  I saw a picture of me later in that same outfit, and I thought- "Oh boy, was she right! "

So, inclusion of a neutral gray in my capsule wardrobe was needed, and I actually have purchased several gray fabrics over the years.  But in working through the bin of fabrics for this capsule wardrobe, the last pieces left in the bin were all gray.  Kind of like when going through the bowl of jelly beans and the last jelly beans left are the black ones.   Not interested.

Los Proyectos Locos

I'm probably like most seamstresses- when people find out that you can sew, you might be the only person that they know who sews, and they come to you with some pretty crazy projects!  I thought you might like to see some of mine.


I work at a Dual Language Spanish/English elementary school, and we have a big Hispanic Heritage Celebration every year.  Our kindergarten teacher, who is a true Spaniard, said that her dream was to have a Giant King like they do in Spain for holiday processions.  So, our enrichment teacher came up with the idea to put a paper mache head on top of a ladder, and would I make a king's robe for him.

V-Neck Tunics from BurdaStyle 10/2017/127


In BurdaStyle's October issue, there was a loose-fitting tunic in the plus section that caught my eye.  It looked super simple, and stylish, and I had a couple of short cuts of wools that I could envision it made out of- it just takes 1-3/4 yards.


The first was a remnant of a nubby wool sweater knit. It started out white, but to make it work with my First Frost capsule wardrobe plan, I dyed it this very pale blue.  I just used the regular RIT dye from the store, and it worked great.  One thing that helps with dying a wool fabric is adding white vinegar to the dye bath to help with the dye uptake.

Simplicity 8470 Hooded Wool Coat


Baby, it's cold outside!  If you're in the northern hemisphere, you likely agree.  We've had some crazy sub-zero temperatures, haven't we?  But what better excuse than to make a cozy new coat!  This time, I chose a gorgeous dusty lavender wool/cashmere blend from Fabric Mart to make Simplicity 8470. This is the culminating piece for my First Frost capsule wardrobe plan!

The reason that I chose this pattern was pure and simple- it had a hood!  I'm so surprised that very few coat patterns come with hoods!  Sure, hats are good, but when it is really cold and windy, nothing beats the protection of a hood.