In case you don’t know Sewing with a Plan (SWAP) is an annual sewing challenge put on by Artisans’ Square. Right now members are discussing what they would like the contest to be focused on this year. If you have thought about joining in, now is the time to start thinking about it. It is free to participate, although the site needs donations to keep running, so if you do join in, please contribute too.
The basic idea is to design a small collection for yourself (or perhaps someone you love) during November and December and to make up the outfits over the next four months (January to April). There is voting on the winners at the end, but it is a gentle competition with no prizes.
I have done the challenge for the last two years, and I got so much out of it. I really slowed down and thought hard about what I was making. I made clothes that worked together. I really enjoyed making and wearing them, and still wear my SWAP outfits regularly, and with pride. I was so pleased that two of my blog friends – Stephanie and Karine – joined in last year. I hope this year quite a few more might take part – a few of you have said you might (you know who you are!)
Here is what I am thinking.
My last two SWAP collections were really autumn/winter affairs, even though the contest ends in May and that is when the weather starts to improve.
This year I am going to prepare for summer 2016 with my SWAP. I love sweet peas – these are from my Mother’s garden.
The most delightful of all summer flowers with their gorgeous scent and wonderful array of colours makes them my all time favourite flower. The wild version is more robust, colourful and sadly lacking in scent. Although I am attracted the bright, showiness of the wild version I think I want to include a set of clothes in my wardrobe that are more subtle, lighter. This year I want a more gentle, softer SWAP – a real feeling of English summer time.
My palette will include
- soft pink
- bright pink
- deep purple
- light purple
- deep green
I am including the two containers I have used too, as inspiration. The silver pottinger was given as a wedding presen to Nick and I, and the small white paper bag vase I bought for my mother years ago.
These two containers enable me to include
I am going to use lightweight fabrics, some of them translucent
- cotton lawn
- silk organza
- very lightweight linen
- crisper cottons
- embossed metallics or maybe engraved silver buttons
- crumpled fabric
- pinked or rick rac edges
After my embroidery experiments I may include sweet peas somewhere. Here is a nice old embroidery pattern generously shared by QisforQulitler.com.
It seems pretty random at the moment. I have no idea where this will take me. I associate sweet peas so much with scent as well as texture and colour.