Monday, September 21, 2015

my fall 2015 capsule wardrobe: part 1 - colors, colors everywhere

As much as I love sewing for kids (and I really do!) I've been wanting to sew for myself for the last couple of years.  I kept telling myself that I would lose a few pounds and then I would sew a whole new wardrobe.  How utterly moronic!  Why in the world am I waiting for something that may or may not happen (probably won't since I don't bother to actually try to lose weight!) before I sew clothes.  Clothes are required regardless of weight, so they might as well fit and be comfortable :)  And yes, comfort is almost as important to me as looks.  Who am I kidding, comfort is more important important, which explains the fact that I own yoga pants even though I never have any intention of actually doing yoga ;)

Now I could just walk into a store and buy some clothes.  Even though I sew, I'm not opposed to store bought clothes in any way.  However, I'm on the short side (just under 5'4") with a fairly curvy build (along with other fitting quirks that I will discuss in a future post), and clothes that fit off the rack are hard to come by.  And I figure if I'm going to have to alter clothes anyway, I might as well start from scratch and get the fit as close to perfect as I can.  Plus, I'm not really that into fashion trends (I like timeless clothing that won't go out of style next year) and the current styles (especially skinny jeans and oversized tops!) don't appeal to me, so I don't often find too many things I like at the store.

So, where to start?  Patterns?  Fabric?  The black hole that is Pinterest for outfit ideas?  Nope.  I'm starting with colors.  Although, just for the sake of disclosure, I will have to confess that Pinterest was a big help with this step and pretty much all future steps :)

I'm not sure how many of you attended some kind of color party or had your colors done when it was extremely popular back in the 80s and 90s.  I did, and I found it pretty interesting at the time.  I went with my mom (when I was at the know-it-all age of 14) to one of her friend's color parties.  The professional color consultant (I would love to know how you become one of those!) could not determine which color family I belonged in.  At the time I questioned her "expertise" but now I think I owe her an apology!  I seem to flip back and forth between a summer and a fall depending on several things.  First, there are the subtle differences in hair shades that occur naturally due to the sun and somewhat less naturally due to those little magic boxes that make grey go away ;)  My hair naturally is a light brown with a gold undertone, but when I use a "magic box" I prefer a darker, ashier, medium brown.  Also, my skin tone leans slightly towards a warmer yellow tone when I tan (to a slightly less ghost like pale) in the summer and the truly ghost white color I sport in the winter.  And, finally, my eyes are a fairly dark bluish grey (more grey than blue unless I'm wearing blue) which leans toward a cooler tone.

After I read a bunch of info on choosing the best colors (thanks again Pinterest!) I analyzed my own colors, and came up with ... nada, nothing, absolutely squat.  I truly don't fit in any particular color family.  Interesting, or perhaps not so interesting but relevant none the less, fact about me - I rarely fit in anywhere (usually by choice), so it's nice to see that I'm consistent in all areas of my life, even those out of my control ;)  So, in the end, I ignored all my not so hard work and came up with this nice little chart of the colors I choose to wear because I like them and they don't look awful on me ;)

I consider this to be a good starting place for designing a capsule wardrobe, although I don't plan to use all of the colors immediately.  I will start with the neutrals (cream, black, camel and dark denim) and make some basic pieces such as pants and jackets.  And then I will add in more color (most likely the teal and poppy) when I get around to making a few tops and possible a dress.  And finally, some of the colors (pastels and metallics) will probably only be used as accents, i.e. accessories and shoes.  Of course this whole plan could change if I find the perfect fabric ... you know, that fabric that you have to have regardless of the fact that it's not the "right" color or the desired design, but you just can't help but love it anyway and absolutely have to buy it right this second.  Or maybe I'm the only one with that problem?

Tomorrow I'll be back with part 2 ... determining body shape.  Turns out I don't fit neatly in one category for that either ;)


  1. I never had my colors done - but I do remember when that was on the cover of all the teen magazines I bought and devoured! I love your color choices, though - they'd make a lovely quilt, too!

    1. My house is actually decorated in muted versions of these colors, so a quilt would go quite nicely ;)

  2. Love this color palette. I'm curious to see your further plans.

  3. love to read all about your plans .Frequenty I smiled while reading. Oh no, you are not alone in all the things you do and think -))
    Kind regards and a good evening !
    Marie Danneels

    1. It's nice to know that I'm not alone - sometimes it sure feels that way! It's hard to believe that anybody's thoughts can possibly be as chaotic as mine, especially when writing a blog post ;)

  4. I too cross over between seasons due to skin tanning and highlights. This palette works very well for me as well except my "reds" need to have more depth and less "orange". I love how you did this color visual and would love to do one for each of my seasons. Can you tell me how you did it? Have you happened to do any other seasons?