For those of you who don’t sew, in the sewing world S.W.A.P. stands for Sewing With A Plan. It means exactly what it says – you have some blueprint laid out for you that determines what you sew. There are different kinds:

  • Contests sponsored by fabric stores (usually online). They have a theme and specific garments that you must sew. For example a Work Wardrobe may include 2 blouses, 1 dress, 1 pair of pants, 1 skirt & a jacket. At least one of the garments must be sewn in fabric bought from the retailer. You usually win a gift certificate to purchase more fabric!
  • SWAPs sponsored by sewing websites or groups that have no purchase requirements. These are pretty much the same as above, with specific garments that have to be sewn. If it is sponsored by a company, there is a prize involved. Sometimes it is just a group of blogger friends who want to inspire each other and enjoy some friendly competition.
  • Self-imposed SWAPs are personal. You look in your closet and see that your wardrobe needs some sprucing up. Or, you change jobs and the new job has a different dress code and you need to get up to speed. Or, you are going on a Hawaiian vacation and need to beef up your sarong stash. (I hope to one day do that one!)

I have a couple of SWAPs in mind for myself. My wardrobe suffers from years of super casualness and weight gain. This has left me with none of the essentials like a LBD (Little Black Dress) or a crisp white shirt (the one I have is a hand-me-down from a friend’s sister and it is now more yellow than white).

I already have a small fabric stash:

Believe me, compared to most people and what I used to have, this is small.

The only problem is that my job has a dress code for supervisors:

  • Black or white collared shirt or turtleneck
  • Black or khaki pants, skirts, or walking shorts (may not be corduroy or denim)

None of the fabric above fits that criteria.

This is what I got for the dress code:

Not much to work with, huh? The 3 tan pieces will be pants and maybe 1 skirt. The 2 white pieces are for crisp white shirts (foundation wardrobe, here I come!). The black pieces will be 1 camp shirt (still searching for the perfect pattern) and pants and maybe a skirt.

Today I am cutting out the beige fabric on top to make these:

Vogue 8041, View B (on the far left) – this pattern is out of print. They are supposed to fit below the waist and that hasn’t really worked out for me in the past. So I added a couple of inches below the waistband. We will see how they turn out because other than lengthening I have never made pattern adjustments in my life!

Wish me luck on my SWAP!

3 thoughts on “S.W.A.P.

  1. Deanna says:

    Since I am someone who was LUCKY, after BEGGING AND BEGGING AND BEGGING was honored to model the end result of your sewing skills at the 88 FAMU graduation party we all attended..I know you will do GREAT!

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