Are you playing along with the Making Clothes CustomFit KAL? Throughout the blurred travel extravaganza that has been the last month (one more trip this weekend and then I’m done!), the Pinterest board and the Ravelry thread have kept me in happy sweater dreams.
This week for Fashion Friday, I wanted to share where I am with my own sweater and talk a little bit about our hand-knits as fashion. Last time, we talked about listening to your swatch as fabric, and using that experience to identify what kind of sweater the swatch wanted to be. A long time ago now, I talked a little bit about wearing our hand-knits as clothes. Today, I want to put those things together and talk about using our wardrobes to help guide our sweater-making.
Listening to your swatch will give you some parameters on your sweater. But as the finished CustomFit sweaters show, you are the one that really brings it to life. My swatch told me it wanted to be a sweatshirt.
But I needed to go a bit further, from there: I don’t wear a lot of sweatshirts. My style, my wardrobe, my daily clothes? They’re casual, and approachable… …but they’re not really informal. I dress more like this and this and this:
So my first bit of advice: Listen to your wardrobe. What do you like to wear? Try to get three words that describe your favorite clothes. For me?
Clean. Tailored. Comfortable.
So my first task, in coming up with my own KAL design, was to merge what the yarn wanted to be (sweatshirt) with what I like to wear (clean, tailored, comfortable).
My second bit of advice: Curate your wardrobe. Now, we’re not used to thinking about our clothing in this way anymore. We think about clothing as more fluid, maybe more disposable. Most of our closets see high turnover. I urge you to think toward the other extreme, when you’re dreaming up this sweater. Start by thinking about your closet.
What piece are you missing? What color, texture, characteristics will cause the garment to slip into a lovely little niche in your daily wear?
For me, the answer to that question is something that could be worn with jeans or my favorite corduroy kilt. With a busy button-down, or a soft gray long-sleeved tee. Something interesting enough on its own, but not overpowering in case I want to wear it with something bolder.
So I opted for big blocks of Stockinette and Reverse Stockinette. CustomFit is warning me that I might be short on yarn, so I haven’t made any decisions about the sleeves yet. But I can’t wait to wear this.
The longer I’m away from my day job and its fashion constraints, the more I move to a (very exciting) place where my entire wardrobe is made up only of pieces that I love. That fit together in a coherent set of meaningful clothes that express who I am (and want to be). If that sounds emotional and hokey when all we’re talking about as clothes, then so be it. I’m not above being emotional and hokey about clothes, because they make a tremendous difference to the way I face the world.
I urge you, in this KAL, to imagine what it would be like if your own closet were that way. What if every piece you own says something about who you are, and want to be? What if every piece you put on reaffirms the awesomesauce that is you? If that’s your frame of mind, what sweater do you want to wear?