Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Capsule Wardrobe: My First Problem to Solve

Since I have decided to have Capsule Wardrobe (or at least attempt to have one), I’ve run into a…. kink.

The Question

You see, long before I even came across the concept of a capsule wardrobe, I struggled with the concept of how many pants a woman needs. Jeans specifically. I mean, you can’t need 15 pairs, can you? I can’t really even imagine needing 5 pairs.

Since having the baby, I’ve gone pants shopping once. I found two pairs of jeans that fit my post baby body, and settled at that. Fast forward 6 months (yes, only 6 months), and I’ve worn through both pairs completely. At the upper thigh area, one of the places that got bigger and I didn’t really notice until now. You can see my undies.

Unfortunately, I just finished purging the fabric stash, and no longer have random bits and bobs of fabric around to patch the upper thigh chafe through holes on these still good jeans.

And so, yet again, the age old question came up yet again for me. How many pairs of jeans do I actually need?

My Answer 

After thinking about it long and hard (okay a day or two in a panic over not having any pants), I decided on 2-3 pairs depending on what I could find that fit me. Being short but not skinny, I have a rough time finding pants that fit well. I’ve been hemming my own pants since high school.  With the skinny fit trend, and post baby, I’ve had to figure out what size I am and what actually fits without being too tight.

Honest moment here: I’ve gone up 3 sizes since having baby. The hips don’t lie. This size change is holding true across several brands (Do we need a post on vanity sizing?).

Why 2 pairs? Since I would love to promote up in my job, I’ve decided to dress for the promotion I hope to get in a couple years now. That way I don’t have to scramble to get a whole new wardrobe when the time comes to no longer wear the uniform. Technically, the uniform is only the shirt, so pants will make me look more professional, or not. 

Also, last time I went jeans shopping I tried on about 50 pairs and found 2 that fit. If I want more than 2, I’d have to try hundreds on and I don’t have time for that.

I’ve already bought and received the fabric for a pair of dress pants. Maybe 2, depending on how the muslin looks it could enter the public clothes arena. I plan to add to my 2 pairs of jeans 1 pair of plain black dress pants, a pair of pinstriped dress pants, and either khaki or navy dress pants.

So in total I will have 5 pairs of pants.

If you’re having panic attacks over this number, keep in mind this is just the pants. We haven’t gotten in to skirts yet!

Stay tuned to see how making my dress pants goes! 

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

A Capsule Wardrobe: Plan of Attack

Here we are, I'm a couple of weeks into this Capsule Wardrobe project, if you count all the thinking about it first. You see, I like to think things through so I feel like I know what's going on before I take the plunge.
I've come up with a loose plan and 'rules' to get to my capsule wardrobe after giving a lot of thought to it, and starting. I recommend taking one baby step first, to see how you work, then move forward after making any adjustments you might need to make.

The First Step: Out with the Old

 First, I've gone through about a third of my current wardrobe and have filled a big black garbage bag with clothes that no longer fit. I'm not going to hold on to them in the hopes that they will eventually fit again, because let's be realistic, I had a baby and my hips are several inches bigger than they used to be. And hip bones don't shrink.

I did sell some clothes. We might do a post on that later ;)

I've would like to try a 1 in, 3 out rule, until I hit my goal number of each piece. So, since I've made one dress (sort of), I have to take out 3 dresses and either sell or Goodwill them. I already had been thinking about my dresses and I can easily move 3 out.

One thing I am trying to keep in mind is my career path. I do plan to promote up in the next few years, so I may store a couple of pieces that I can use in the future. However, I will have to pull them out every few months, try them on to make sure they still fit and look good. If they don't, out they go.

The Second Step: In with the new

The rest of my plan is to start making new clothes for me.

Why am I making most of them? Because I know if I make them they will fit. I can take my time and practice so I get a good look for me. This is going to slow down the overall process, but I will feel good about Every Single Piece of my wardrobe.

I did keep a few tops, most of my pjs, some scarves, and pants. As I make more items, some of these will have to move out, but hopefully I will be confident enough in my new stuff to happily let them go.

To be honest, I don't have a specific end number in mind right now for anything but pants. (Which you will hear about in next week's post.) So, until I promote up and no longer have to wear a uniform, I'm not sure how bit my wardrobe will actually be. I do know I want it to be smaller than it currently is by quite a bit, I just don't know specifics yet.

Thanks for visiting!

If you are wanting to start a capsule wardrobe, or making more of your clothes, let me know how it's going! I love questions, so if you have any about either process, ASK, and I will try to answer.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

A Capsule Wardrobe: What Is It?

I've heard people talking (mostly online) about capsule wardrobes, and minimalist living, and KonMarie (or something like that) and I admit, I would love to do it, but I'm super skeptical about how it actually works and if these people really are pulling it off or if they're just all talk.

Over the course of the past year or so, I've been feeling really overwhelmed with clutter. Mind, we don't have a lot of stuff, but it often still feels like too much. I've been de-stashing my fabric and yarn (huge black garbage bag gone!) but still feel like I could do better with things.

I came across the idea of a capsule wardrobe. This, in the simplest of definitions, is a wardrobe of only about 30 pieces. A few pants, shirts, dresses, and layering pieces (like sweaters).

One good resource for information on this is this TEDx talk "The Ten Item Wardrobe" (thanks Sarah!).

Well, almost a year post baby, and I'm still having some body image issues. I'm actually not sure if "issues" is the right word for it. I'm adjusting still to my body and how it has changed. I think that instead of beating myself up and hating the way I look in my pre-baby clothes, I should start getting rid of them in exchange for some really great clothes that fit me now.

Another factor in this journey is that I wear a uniform for work. So I really don't need all those clothes that I never wear because I'm in uniform.

So what is my interpretation of a Capsule Wardrobe?

Right now, I am thinking of it being:
5 pairs of work appropriate pants
about 7 shirts
3 skirts
2 pairs of black leggings
3 dresses
and some sweaters

Additionally, I like to have stay at home clothes so:
2 stay at home pants
3 or 4 stay at home shirts (probably university team shirts...)

That's the tentative plan for now. I will keep blogging about it and we will see how it goes!

Friday, September 1, 2017

The Curls Project: A Revival?

A long time ago, back when I actually had time and the ability to attend Knit Night at the local yarn store, I embarked on a project to knit every pattern in a book, in order.

I made it through three of the fourteen patterns before getting side tracked by things like custom Christmas Stocking orders and finishing grad school and having a baby.

I recently went through the yarn and sold some of the stash in preparation for Monkey to move to her own room. I found the yarn I had planned for the next Curls shawl, and am contemplating starting it up.

But first I have some orders and a sweater or two to make. You see, I promised myself I would finish them, and make one more project before starting in on other ones. I need to de-stash, and at least one of those planned projects is part of a bigger project that I'm working on for myself this winter.

I guess the Curls project may still be on hold... who knows if it will ever actually get done.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

I'm Working on It

Currently, there seems to not be a lot of time for this whole blogging thing, let alone all the other stuff I should be doing in my life.

However, I want you to know I am working on some great (hopefully) posts for the blog over the next few weeks. Once I get back into the groove of it, I hope to keep the momentum going.

Here are some posts I'm working on currently for you all:

DIY Pirate Costumes for Mom and Baby

100 Days 100 Blocks Quilt Challenge

Quilt Pattern Reviews

Yard Sale Find Upgrades

Indie Clothing pattern reviews

Converting a Toy Guitar into a Working Ukulele

and much more!

I hope.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Randomly on a Saturday

And just like that it's been two months since I last posted.

It wasn't supposed to happen like this, but you know, life with a baby. And now a full time job.

Yep. I started back at teaching pre-k and I love it. I forgot how much I love being with those kiddos and how much fun they can be. They can be crazy, but they are still super fun.

So: Randomly on a Saturday. Here's 5 Things About Me.

Why only 5? Because I need the rest of the list for other posts like this...

1. I LOVE sushi. It was the hardest part about being pregnant.
2. I used to be vegetarian, for 5 years. I still lean toward it.
3. The thing I miss most about Utah, other than my family, is the snow.
4. I never received any formal or informal sewing training until I was 22.
5. Nailpolish is one of the beauty products I have to have in my house. I don't necessarily have to use it, I just have to have it.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Road Trip Tip!

When I was a young child, we did road trips. Places like Yellowstone, Vernal Utah (dinosaurs people), and Disneyland. You can log a lot of hours in the car during a vacation, and if you have young children it can get rough for everyone!

Here's a tip that my mom implemented with us children, that I plan to implement in the future with Monkey and any siblings that may happen to be in the picture as well.

Boredom Bags

Yep. You heard me.

Before I get further into this, you have to know the essential factor in these actually working. It's that Mom and Dad control the bags. Why? Every family has at least one child who is still working on self control and will have eaten all the treats and used up all the stickers in the first hour of a trip and spend the rest of the trip whining and annoying their siblings, and parents.

What is a Boredom Bag? 

It's a bag full of things to distract and occupy your children during the hours in the car.
It can include special treats like favorite candy or snacks. Small toys. And books! Whatever you think will buy you some sanity while the children are playing with or eating or working on the item you passed back.

So, every hour or two pull out a new item and pass it back. See how long you can last before passing out an item, because you don't want to give out everything too fast and be stuck without a way to distract the kiddos on the return trip!

Bonus Tip: Come up with a code phrase to use with your spouse if YOU need a break. Use the phrase to let them know it's time to pull over at a rest stop, or to find a park nearby, so everyone can get out of the car. The children can run off some steam, and you and your spouse can take turns going to the bathroom or even just having a few quiet minutes to yourself in the car.

Now, I really hate when people try to upsell you on something after hyping up stuff. But I honestly think that this company has a lot to offer when it comes to this sort of thing. I recently became an Usborne Books & More consultant. I am currently running a Road Trip Boredom Bag Special for anyone! Your child will receive at least 5 books in their boredom bag, just let me know their ages and interests, I can find books for every age through high school.  I will send you a list of books to approve, and once you send payment your books will be on their way!

Send me an email to order your boredom bags!

You can also order just one or two books using my direct website: 
 If you do order, please know that we really appreciate your support of our family! My book selling is part of our journey to becoming debt free, and we are grateful for every penny we receive. Thank you!

Happy Travels!