Wardrobe Architect – Week 1

Colette Patterns launched a new interactive series called Wardrobe Architect. Its a weekly series designed to help you build your personal style and sew or buy clothes for a wardrobe that works for you. The was a timely series for me as I’ve realized I have several styles depending on the purpose but I’d like to unify my style so I can minimize my clothing.

Here are my answers to the first week’s worksheet.

HISTORY
How has your personal history informed the way you dress? When did your tastes crystallize? Have they changed over the years, and why? 

I think my tastes are just truly defining themselves now.  I think I’ve always been stylish but from one day to the next it was a totally different look.  I think my travels will be most defining in determining my style.

PHILOSOPHY
How does your philosophy, spirituality, or religion affect your aesthetics and buying habits? Or, what aspects of those things would you like to see reflected? 

I tend to dress to make myself happy and not be too concerned about what other people think. So sometimes I buy horizontal stripes when someone hates it on me.  Additionally I’m coming to believe in slow fashion and I’m trying to avoid buying cheap, trendy clothing in favor of better made classics.

CULTURE
How has your cultural background shaped the way you look? How did the aesthetics and values you grew up with affect your tastes as you got older? 

I wouldn’t say my cultural background has much to do it but I think I am definitely influenced by my mother’s mode of dressing.  She will always tell you she has a classic style which is why she won’t get rid of clothes she’s had for 20 years.

COMMUNITY

How are you influenced by the people around you, including friends, family, and other communities you’re involved in?

Since moving to Portland I’ve become more enamored with vintage clothing and style.  My friends here also tend to wear more dresses and skirts which has certainly inspired me to wear less jeans.

ACTIVITIES
How do your day to day activities influence your choices? 

Living in a city means I do tons of walking. I also do a fair amount of outdoors stuff like hiking and exploring.

LOCATION
Does the place you live inform the way you dress? How does climate factor in? 

Portland certainly has its own dress code.   I stared wearing my glasses a lot more since I moved here and I rarely ever touch my crazy high heel collection. The rain also factors in as during half of the year it can downpour at any time so you at least need to be wearing proper shoes (usually boots) and have a rain jacket with you.

BODY
In what ways does body image affect your choices in clothing? What clothes make you feel good about the body you live in? What clothes make you feel uncomfortable or alienated from your body? 

I am full busted and apple shaped so the clothing that makes me feel good those that draw attention away from my tummy but are still fitted.  I am uncomfortable in very loose or tent-like garments.

The Wardrobe Architect

Jelly Roll Baby Quilt

I guess it’s become my thing to make baby quilts when my close friends have their first baby. I mean I’ve done it twice now, so that makes it a thing. Right? I was originally going to make a cut chenille blanket but last minute I changed my mind which left me with not a lot of time to complete it. I asked Natalie for some ideas and she suggested a jelly roll quilt.

I looked it up and found the perfect pattern from Fat Quarter Shop called the Jelly Roll Jam. I’ve only made one quilt before so I didn’t want to do anything to crazy.  I found watching their Youtube video on making this quilt to be a little more helpful than the written pattern.

Now I could focus on finding really awesome fabric. I ended up buying Bluebird Park by Kate & Birdie from Moda Fabrics. What really got me were these adorable hedgehogs.

sbabyquilt1

Here is the finished quilt.  Basically to make it you assemble 3 sets of 6 strips. Then you cut them up to make 9 different blocks. It’s very straightforward.  Since you only use 18 strips that means you have a enough for a scrappy binding and a second quilt!

sbabyquilt2

One thing I wish I had done on my first quilt was to make a cooler quilt back.  So on this one I saved all my strip scraps and did a stripe down the back.  Natalie gave me some great suggestions on how to get it centered. Then of course I had to to make my quilt sandwich and do the quilting. I tried 2 new things on this quilt – spray basting and quilting gloves.  The spray basting was awesome, but I’m not sure the gloves made much of a difference.

the quilt back

It took me awhile to figure out what quilting design I wanted to use, but in the end I went with the figure 8 loops. I used my chalko pen to draw guide lines so the rows would be relatively even and then I went at it.  Not sure what I did differently this time but I didn’t break a single needle! It’s not the greatest quilting in the world but it looks nice enough!

Natalie also told I should make a quilt label. This was totally not on my radar but her reasoning made sense – many quilts become family heirlooms and 20 years from now no one may remember who made it or why they made it.

sbabyquilt3