27 July 2012

My Old Friend, the SWAP

SWAP = Sewing with a Plan

Many of you are familiar with this concept, having either read about it or participated in the contests.  Back in the day, Julie of Timmel Fabrics (Julie, if you're reading, I sure do miss you and your fabric!) ran the SWAP contest.  These days, the lovely folks over at Stitcher's Guild Forum have taken over the reins.

The SWAP concept (and subsequent Timmel Fabrics contest) was based on an idea presented in Australian Stitches magazine about a decade or so ago.  The idea was to create a wardrobe that is cohesive, both in colour and style.  The different garments (one jacket, two pairs of pants, two skirts and six tops were required in the original SWAP contest) in a grouping should work together to provide the wearer with several mix and match outfits.

I used to do almost all of my sewing in SWAPs.   However, over the last while I had gotten away from sewing this way.  Well, earlier this week I was perusing back issues of Australian Stitches magazine.  Lynn Cook (one of the editors) had put together a lovely wardrobe (see issues Vol. 15, No. 9 to Vol. 16 No. 4 if they are available to you).  In the first issue, she sewed up a jacket, two skirts, a pair of pants and two tops in black, white and red fabrics.  In each consecutive issue, she added to the mix with further garments.  Along the way, she added in other colours (orange, teal, bone, lavender, etc).  In the end, she created a beautifully coordinated wardrobe. 

This was very inspiring to read, so based on her plans, I put together my own version:

SWAP Phase 1 - based on Vol. 15 No. 9:

SWAP Phase 2 - based on Vol. 15 No. 10:

SWAP Phase 3 - based on Vol. 15 No. 11: 

SWAP Phase 4 - based on Vol. 15 No. 12:

SWAP Phase 5 - based on Vol. 16 No. 1:

SWAP Phase 6 - based on Vol. 16 No. 2:

SWAP Phase 7 - based on Vol. 16 No. 3:

SWAP Phase 8 - based on Vol. 16 No. 4:

The vast majority of fabrics were in my stash.  However, I do have three fabrics that are still alluding me at this point (ETA: I found three fabrics that finished off my SWAP, so the storyboards have been updated).  The patterns are a mix of recent and older ones that I had in my possession.  I may add or modify as I go along if I find it necessary.

I have already started on the plans above - one garment is finished and several more are cut out.  So, stay tuned...

17 comments:

Anonymous said...

WOW! You are an organizer!
I like the flow of the garments, fabrics - and ENDLESS combinations!

Good to see you posting regularly again! I've missed you!

Brenda

alethia said...

SWAP is a great idea if you can pull it off. I tried and it did not work for me. I love stitches magazines and I owned all the magazines that have SWAP articles. I am looking forward to see how your SWAP turns out.

Vicki said...

Some good plans there! Look forward to seeing your progress.

Toby Wollin said...

I did a mini version of this to go on a big vacation a couple of years ago - I started out with a black skirt and a red top that I already had. I made a red skirt, tops in various combinations of red, white, and black prints, and took along a pair of black pants and a black jacket. It was great. The knits dealt with the packing like champs and I looked spiffy on the flights.

Dana said...

Ohhh, I was so excited to see a new SWAP plan from you! I love your color combinations. I too need a new wardrobe because I NEED the outfits and because I HAVE the fabrics. What I don't have is the time. Can't wait to see your garments come to life!

Carolyn (cmarie12) said...

Before I saw your post I thought that I was a little overprepared with my list for vacation sewing, fall sewing and another special fall project...but now I bow to the master!

This is going to be an amazing wardrobe and I know you can pull it off! Please share the pieces here with us...it will be fun to see them all come to life!

Carol said...

I need to get back to sewing with a plan. I'm all over the place at the moment making odd things that I like but really don't help my wardrobe much.

Cherie said...

And you are our old friend! Good to see your wonderful garments again. Love as always your color choices! Yes, would love to see more of your home, so carefully designed by you, and I'm sure a paragon of organization! Have a good summer!

Sharon said...

It was your SWAP sewing that really got me focused to sew that way. I love all your plans and fabric choices and can't wait to see them come to life.

mahoo said...

Wow! I'm afraid I'd be sew overwhelmed, I'd end up sewing nothing. I'm going to enjoy watching your progress, and sewing vicariously through you. I'm in awe.

Julie Culshaw said...

Hey Shannon, yes I am reading your blog. And look forward to seeing your garments come to life. You excel at organization, but you also come through on your plans. Go girl!

T. Sedai said...

Very excited to see you SWAP come to life! It looks like you will have a lot of great pieces from this plan. I have been trying to do a year-long sewing plan, but have been slightly de-railed due to costume sewing for others. Seeing you SWAP plans inspires me to get back to my original year long sewing goals next month when life returns to somewhat normal.

Victoria Callas said...

Thanks for sharing this, it was a real pleasure to be introduced to the SWAP idea. I've never heard of it but it seems so useful. And good luck with your plans!

bluemooney said...

Your long-range planning is astounding! It all looks like a wonderful plan and it will be fun to see it become a reality.

Evie Jones said...

I am in awe of your organisation skills and your fabric/colour/pattern combining skills. Pretty lost for other words. Simple cannot wait to see this progress.

Lene said...

WOW - I am ever so amazed at you SWAP! I would never, EVER have the backbone to go through with a plan as ambitious as yours is :-) Can hardly wait to see those gorgeous creations coming online.

Great to see you back blogging again - you have been missed.

Jilly Be said...

Oh my....this must be the most organized, well-thought out & put together SWAP I've ever seen!

I'm impressed! I wish I could say I was also inspired, but how about if I'm just uber impressed? ;-D