Fall 2011. Plotting, inspiration and color

Morning uniloops! You fierce mythical beasts and stand-ins for D-rings. I’ve been waiting ALL DAY to call you uniloops! Yesterday at the shop Drew, the owners son (he’s 14! he makes quilts!) was making a purse for his mom (awwwww, right?) and it needed D-rings or UNILOOPS!! I’d never heard that word before and it put me in mind of Aurthurian adventures. Uniloops, related to gryphons. Pure like unicorns, but comical. Like basset hounds.

I am SO sorry to do this to you with more than a week left in July, but today I’m all about fall sewing. Much like Lucy, who, when woken from a dead sleep at 2 in the morning will be convinced it’s breakfast time, the recent ‘break’ in the hot, steamy weather put my in a fall frame of mind. Never mind that the break just means that the current 7 a.m. temperature is 73 with a dewpoint edging in on 70 and a forecast of 91 as a high for the day. It was a sauna out there a few days ago. It’s not now. It’s TOTALLY fall in my head!

Last year I planned out my fall sewing during June – partially to distract me from last minute wedding planning obsession. Pattern Review was hosting a wardrobe contest and that goaded me into action. Since I was planning a wardrobe, I picked a theme (vintage, natch. Don’t you HATE when people say ‘natch’?) and a color scheme (goldenrod, dusty rose and celery….another one for Laura**) and patterns. Here’s my kick-off inspiration board for last fall’s wardrobe planning… [for all boards, click to see a larger image. Click at your own risk, there may be some pixelation and double chin-action...]

**OK, here’s the thing with colors and Laura. Laura and I work together at Sewtropolis and she is a master of pulling tin-foil-hat-crazy color names out of thin air. I, on the other hand, believe that the 8 count box of crayolas contains all the color names required for daily use. But since she’s enthusiastic and fun and I’m grouchy and cantankerous, I’m trying to get out of my comfort zone and use better color names. For those of you who are more like me, last fall’s color palette was yellow, pink and green.
Fall 2010 Inspiration Board

That was a good plan. I should just redo that plan again… here’s what I got done. A true testament as to why a tripod was one of the best purchases made in the last 12 months…

Anyway! Like many of you I joined in on the Colette Spring Palette Challenge. The planning process for my spring wardrobe was a bit more theoretical than applied compared to the fall planning. I started out with a painting that I liked, then pulled other images that were more around the feel and colors I had in mind. Here’s my initial inspiration board for spring…

spring 2011 inspiration board

And here’s what I made. Not exactly what I started out for, but that’s why it’s an inspiration board and not a work-order, amiright you little uniloops?

So now I’m on to fall, and again, I am starting from a new angle. This time, it’s all about wardrobe basics. Last year I wasn’t sure if I was going to return to the suit-wearing-skyway-walking-downtown-everone-wears-black scene or stay in my south Minneapolis neighborhood where bright yellow leggings and polka dots are fine for day wear (and evening wear, for that matter!) Well, I’m still in south Minneapolis, and slowly losing my patience for locating parking downtown, so this fall I thought I’d try to build up a funky, classic, practical in heels up to 2″, fall wardrobe. Like a lot of (wise) women, I prefer wearing skirts and dresses, but, alas, those are hard to wear through Minneapolis weather from mid-October to March. I need pants. As such, I started with a swatch of fabric that I’m in love with (from the new Joel Dewberry fabrics we got in at the shop!), pulled some colors from that, just to have in mind, then I scanned through the likely suspects (Anthro-Banana-Gap-Hepburns-Ann Taylor-Pinterest-Style.com) for looks that I like. Here’s the highlights of all the images I saved…

all image sources | Pinterest board "fall 2011"!!

OK, to distill… things I for sure need to focus on…

  • Jeans: I’ll be loading up on skinnies when the snow flies – you know, for the wearing of with boots. BEFORE then, I’d like to continue the quest for not-bellbottoms-not-too-floppy wide legged jeans that don’t burn out my eyes when I look in the mirror.
  • Trousers: Again, trousers are an earlier fall thing unless I can locate some knee high boots with a magical heel height that’s high enough to make me not feel like I’m wearing clodhoppers with wide legged trousers and yet are not precarious in snow. Before then (aka the 8 weeks of non-snow cold I am expecting) I’d like some trousers, please! I found that great picture of Katherine Hepburn (black and white right in the center) that looks like a belted cardi over wide legged pants. I really like the cropped over palazzo look, but don’t want to show off my belly button, so I’m loving that belted short cardi over trouser vibe!
  • Layered skirts: Anyone else check out Fashion for Nerds? Audi is great at layering fluffy under sleek skirts and I’m jonesing for something pencil-like and tweedy over frothy ruffles!
  • Shirtwaist: I’ve also been jonesing for a nice shirtwaist dress – you know, swingy skirt, buttons down the front.
  • Duster: Apparently, dusters are in. Who knew? I’m not really interested in a duster per say, but I did see a drawing of a SLEEVELESS duster that I found intriguing. I like the super-long layers of sweater coats, so I think a flowy duster type thing suitable for indoor wear might be something I’d get a lot of wear from!
  • Maxi skirts/dresses for fall: I’m still on this bringing the maxi to the colder months. Love that long, dark skirt and sweater look (upper left ‘quadrant’, white background) – although that would NOT be the way for me to wear a belt. I’d look like a plumber!
  • Knits: I live in cardis and long-sleeved, scoop neck T’s in the colder months. I will continue my search for brightly colored cardi’s and interesting knit fabric.
  • Scarves: I love ‘em. Who doesn’t? I’ll be adding to my vintage collection and making my own from pretty silks I come across. I’d also love to find a nice cashmere knit fabric in a good Lucy-fur-repelling color to make into an Anthro-inspired outdoor scarf to replace the one that I had, loved, and (of course) lost somewhere the winter before last!

So there’s my fall plotting! I’ll probably bring this down into more of a plan with patterns and my ridiculous photoshop sketches similar to what I did last spring. I’m hopelessly behind in my blog-reading – I’d love to do another fall palette challenge like Sarai did in the spring… are there plans in the works for that? I know, I know…I could stop typing and just go read the Colette blog, but, well… This is why I’m behind in blog reading!!

PS… I couldn’t bring myself to list out all the links on my most recent inspiration board – but if you head over to Pinterest, all images are on my ‘Fall 2011‘ board and you can get to the originals there! Plus, there’s some more stuff that I liked but didn’t include on the board. The Louis Vuitton fall RTW line is probably not the most practical of wardrobes for my south Minne lifestyle!

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  • Lisa
    August 13, 2011

    hi there! just discovered your site this morning, LOVE it, you are adorable…and this Plotting post is just what i need to get started with my own Fall 2011 plan.

    i used to live in Minneapolis – what a great city. i shared the rent for a big ole house on the corner of 36th and Harriet. fun memories, it was where i first got hooked on coffee made w/fresh-ground beans and doctored up w/half & half and too much sugar. i also remember a funky old cabin of a restaurant (Rick’s Cafe?) that served ginormous wild rice pancakes. ahhh, Minneapolis…

    anyway, thanks for the great bloggage! : )

  • neemie
    July 27, 2011

    I too am jonesing for a shirtwaist dress. Alas, I have not yet found a pattern that wows me. I’m interested to see what you come up with. I’ve read a lot of favorable reviews on Mccall’s 4769, but I still feel kind of “meh” about it.
    neemie recently posted..A tale of two tulip skirts.My Profile

  • SewTara
    July 26, 2011

    Oh I love those pieces. What’s the number on the New Look top with the little bow!? I think I must have it!
    I’m relatively new to your blog but I admire your mad sewing skills and love almost everything you make. It might be dangerous that I’ve added you to my RSS feed :)

  • Jeri
    July 24, 2011

    Just found your blog and I must say that your writing is as entertaining as the outfits and sewing advice :)

  • Laura
    July 22, 2011

    Did you know that you spelled my name LaUra in your color aside? It looks really cool that way in your font. I am just a dork that needs to bring description just one step farther everytime. Also a girl who needed at least the box of 24 to be happy and preferably the 64.

    I would like very much to start to think of Fall. P’raps it will cool me off.
    Laura recently posted..Park Ramble WrapMy Profile

    • Patty The Snug Bug
      July 23, 2011

      OK… I’m NOT seeing that on my computer!!! Maybe I need a new font after all! I just this morning fixed my most pressing item on the blog to-do list (you can click ‘more’ on tutorials and finished at the bottom of the page now! yay!)

      Much like the shampoo aisle at Target, the box of 64 freaked me out as a child. Too. Many. Choices…

      • Laura
        July 24, 2011

        snort! You might have been dubious of it, but “scared” is one of the most anti-Patty terms I can think of. I’m coming up with the most ridiculous color names for my 70′s clown rainbow elastic I can, just to honor this conversation, NATCH-ulary…
        Laura recently posted..Park Ramble WrapMy Profile

  • Andrea
    July 22, 2011

    Ya know, last fall’s wardrobe plan is what made me fall in love with your style. How could I not admire someone brave enough to wear those colors and I loved every single pattern that you picked! I need to start thinking about my fall wardrobe plan, too. I had one for last year but it didn’t really work out. I learned a valuable fitting lesson only a couple weeks ago and want to throw out almost everything I made before that. Also, we don’t start to cool off until the end of September/first of October, so it’s really hard to think about fall.

    • Patty The Snug Bug
      July 23, 2011

      What was the fitting lesson? Do tell!!

      Yay for fall planning – it’s super hot here, too but I’m trying to be better about ‘sewing ahead’ rather than having to wear summer things when it’s cold and be finishing up coats when it’s 65 degrees out!

      That’s funny about you loving every pattern! Almost without fail, when I see a pattern I love you have already posted about it on Pattern Review!!

      • Andrea
        July 25, 2011

        I recently learned that why all my skirts and dresses don’t fit smoothly just below the waist. I was blaming my lumps and bumps instead of realizing that it’s a high hip and can be altered for. It has made a huge difference in how my clothes fit and how much better I feel in them.
        Andrea recently posted..Butterick 6239My Profile

  • Lianne
    July 22, 2011

    You’re not alone! I was just reorganising my wardrobe to take into account my growing baby bump and came across my autumn jumper (purple and red wine fancy knit in a slouchy cowl neck, batwing style) and I instantly got that ‘oooooo autumn’ vibe. I love autumn. It’s my favourite time of year. I even chose to get married in late October, in the UK as I knew the season wouldn’t let me down- resulted in a crisp morning, warm sunshine all day, beautiful photographs and a lucky rain fall at 9pm to lull me to sleep aka The Perfect Day… Anyhoo, after finding my jumper I completely ditched my wardrobe reshuffle and immediately went to play with my watercolours and just created page after page of watercolour splashes and dribbles and pools of paint trying to capture those amazing feelings and sights. It’s all drying ATM and looking heavenly. Thank uniloops for autumn!
    Lianne recently posted..Slowing down a gear, so I can invest my heart in this a little moreMy Profile

    • Patty The Snug Bug
      July 23, 2011

      I would have LOVED to get married in October, but, alas, Mr. Bug loves to be outside and views the entire season as a slow slide into terribleness!!

      Thank uniloops!

  • Nikol
    July 22, 2011

    The purse is done! Uniloops does sound like a mythical creature …. Or the knot that you and Laura came up with for the new Joel Dewberry display! I like your Fall wardrobe ideas. Once again you have inspired me.

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