My local fabric store options are limited to JoAnn Fabrics and G Street Fabrics, both of which are fine but not great if one is looking to do decent apparel sewing. So I tried something new, and ordered swatches from Fabric.com. Although the swatches didn’t get mailed off right away, hence delaying my instant gratification, I was very impressed with the size of the swatches. Most of them are 8×8″ range.

Fabric swatches from Fabric.com

Fabric swatches from Fabric.com

I was looking for midweight knits for a jumpsuit and a jacket, plus I just love the two corduroy prints and wanted to feel the weight. Yes, the floral one is a Liberty of London print! I have no idea what to do with the squirrel print but I love it so much! It’s a fairly lightweight corduroy, so even a easy top could be an option.

Squirrels!

Squirrels!

My first project idea is for a bomber jacket. I think I’ve mentioned the McCalls 7100 pattern already, but the reflective fabric I got from Oanh in Australia made me think about it more. I think the black would be great for the sleeves, so I am looking for something more silvery for the body of the jacket. I’m not sure this knit is exactly what I had in mind, but I’m not sure I’ll find anything better. However, it is more lightweight than I think I’d want. And I’m not a fan of black jackets. So probably back to the drawing board with this one. Maybe a basic sweatshirt gray?

Black reflective for the sleeves for sure, but what for the body?

Black reflective for the sleeves for sure, but what for the body?

McCalls also came out with a jumpsuit pattern, M7099, that tempts me to make one. I was a bit horrified when jumpsuits first became a thing, but they don’t appear to be going away, and they are also beginning to grow on me. Being able to make one means that I can lengthen the torso for my long waist, and make sure it’s comfortable on a bike. I think I’d want to make it sleeveless, however. I’m not sure about the color – a dark solid would be comforting, but I dislike wearing too much black, but gray might look like PJs. I really like this teal, but is that too much? I’m not sure I’d make it reflective, but a sash out of the reflective black fabric is definitely happening, so that would take care of that.

I like both of these knits...

I like both of these knits…

The reflective fabric on the top would be great as a sash with either fabric.

The reflective fabric on the top would be great as a sash with either fabric. (ignore the incorrect pattern number on the page… it really is 7099)

I also really love these swatches together, but I’m not sure what I’d do with them.

Love that black and gold knit, and the Liberty of course. The solid gold in the back works so well with either, but for what...?

Love that black and gold knit, and the Liberty of course. The solid gold in the back works so well with either, but for what…?

I do have the fabric already to make a spring/summer top, which, although I obviously couldn’t wear it any time soon, I should just make, since I have all the materials. I’d rather make something a bit more seasonal, but might have to start here.

McCalls 6794, out of Liberty fabric with a reflective sash

McCalls 6794, out of Liberty fabric with a reflective sash

This Liberty of London for Target fabric (with coordinating throw pillow) used to be a duvet cover - I am going to turn it into the McCalls 6794, with the orange sherbert reflective fabric as the sewing in sash

This Liberty of London for Target fabric (with coordinating throw pillow) used to be a duvet cover – I am going to turn it into the McCalls 6794, with the orange sherbert reflective fabric as the sewing in sash. Perfect for Spring!

Despite the fun of ordering swatches, I’m not as excited about these options as I’d hoped I would be. I guess it’s back to the drawing board. This will make it harder to be in New York this weekend with The Mechanic, since I doubt I’ll manage to get to the fabric stores with him in tow. Most of the Garment District stores have limited weekend hours, and we have other things to see. Of course, if we happen to walk through there to get to anything, well, I’m sure it won’t hurt to duck in somewhere. After all, he needs to see the places I keep talking about, right?!

On the other hand, I have a project that needs to get done before any of these. I promised my niece I would make her a carrying bag for her American Girl doll. I think it’s only appropriate that I practice the pattern first on my American Girl doll, don’t you? As the Victorian doll, I could come up with some lovely fabric combinations for my Samantha. Liberty of London would be perfect for her, if only it weren’t so expensive.

Samantha, in her winter school dress, wants a fancy carrying bag!

Samantha, in her winter school dress, wants a fancy carrying bag!

So I’ll start there, then move onto the spring top, while trying to come up with a better option for the bomber jacket and jumpsuit. And see what else comes up in the meantime!

3 thoughts on “Lining Up the Sewing Projects

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