Focus on Fabric for 2017

Every new sewing year seems to have its own personality. Some of that depends on significant events that may be happening during the year, for which certain outfits must be sewn. Other influences might be travel, or the need to add some “basics” to your wardrobe, or, better yet, sewing classes, requiring planning/ muslin-making/special purchases. For me, this new year of 2017 – it is still new, isn’t it? – is going to have a focus on fabrics. I wish I could say I am resolved not to purchase new fabrics until I use some of what I already have, but I have already made that an impossibility, and the year is a scant three-weeks-old. (Thank you, Mendel Goldberg Fabrics, for tempting me beyond any recognition of reasonable doubt!) However, back to my premise – sometimes I have patterns which are just keeping me awake at night until I use them. Not so much of that this year; it is rather some of the gorgeous fabrics in my collection which are doing their best to disrupt my sleep.

Here are some of them, starting with Winter sewing.

I purchased this fabric from Mendel Goldberg in New York City. It is a wool/silk blend, and it is my current project.

I purchased this fabric from Mendel Goldberg in New York City. It is a wool/silk blend, and it is my current project.

My current bathrobe is in desperate need of replacement. This is the fabric I want to use for this new addition to my cozy, home attire.

My current bathrobe is in desperate need of replacement. This is the fabric I want to use for this new addition to my cozy home attire.

This boucle bridges the gap between Winter and Spring. Given to me for Christmas of 2015, it is a blend of wool, cotton and silk, tightly woven and lightweight. I will be trying to devote most of March to making this into a Classic French Jacket. I will be able to wear it well into Spring and then, of course, it will be perfect for next Fall and Winter, too.

2 full yards of this glorious boucle! I purchased a variety of trims to coordinate with this fabric this past summer in NYC and in San Francisco. Now I just have to decide which one(s) to use.

2 full yards of this glorious boucle! This past summer, I purchased a variety of trims to coordinate with this fabric. Now I just have to decide which one(s) to use.

Spring and Summer sewing always poses the most difficult decisions for me. That is because I have so many gorgeous pieces of vintage linen, and trying to determine which ones to use is a frustrating exercise for me. I would love to make a simple sheath out of this baby blue Moygashel linen, as it would look so lovely with that jacket mentioned above.

Lovely, crisp, pale blue.

Crisp, pale blue linen from the 1950s.

Then there is this amazing abstract design in red and white – also Moygashel – which somehow just has to wiggle its way into the sewing queue:

Red/white abstract linen

This fabric is from the mid to late 1960s, and it arrived with the label intact.

This fabric is from the mid to late 1960s, and it arrived with the label intact.

On the other extreme is this demure flower print, an early 1950s’ Moygashel linen. I have been wanting to make a dress from this for several years. Perhaps this will be the year I get it done.

A very early 1950s' linen, petite black flower silhouettes on a pale ecru background.

Petite black flower silhouettes on a pale ecru background.

Another piece of vintage linen is this duo with lengths of plain and embroidered panels. Originally intended for an A-line shift, I envision it as a dress-length tunic, accented with the grass-green linen shown here. That would be one way I could honor the Pantone Color of the Year, Greenery, as well as make a unique and versatile dress.

Focus on Fabric

How I will ever find the time to make a blouse out of this white dotted cotton, I don’t know, but hope springs eternal for this, too:

I backed this fabric with a piece of orange paper so that the polka dot design shows. The dots are woven into this fine cotton from Britex Fabrics.

I backed this fabric with a piece of orange paper so that the polka dot design shows. The dots are woven into this fine cotton from Britex Fabrics.

With weeks of travel planned for parts of the final five months of the year, it will be folly to plan too much, but I do hope to make one more linen dress which will have wearing power into the Fall.

Navy, rust and brown - perfect for early Fall.

Navy, rust and brown – perfect for early Fall.

And can I possibly get one more Classic French Jacket completed before Thanksgiving? If so, it will be made from this boucle:

focus-on-fabric-boucle

Sprinkled among all these projects will be sewing for my two little granddaughters, too. As usual, I have much more planned than I ever can hope to accomplish, but it is fun to think of the infinite possibilities that dwell in my fabric closet – and in my head.

PS – One fashion observation for 2017:  DRESS GLOVES ARE BACK!

20 Comments

Filed under Boucle for French style jackets, Linen, Moygashel linen, Uncategorized, Vintage fabric

20 responses to “Focus on Fabric for 2017

  1. Some really lovely pieces there, Karen. I’ll enjoy seeing what takes shape in the months ahead!

  2. Mary Lynn

    Such incredibly beautiful fabrics! It will be such fun to watch the magic you perform with them this year!

  3. Marguerite

    Wonderful selection of fabrics! Can’t wait to see them take shape. I love your stash of linen. I’m going to head over to EBay and Etsy to try my luck. PS Happy New Year!

    • I have a definite weakness for linen, and yes, eBay and Etsy are the places to look. Of course, I even have some pieces that I, myself, purchased in the early 1970s – and now they are considered vintage! Luckily I don’t think I’m considered vintage yet…

  4. These are all such beautiful fabrics! Whatever will you do with them? The fabulous boucle jackets, of course…..and what will that glorious red/white abstract become? It is too lovely for words.

  5. karen

    Karen I suspect that the reason for not having used some of these lovely fabrics is that you feel there may be the “perfect” projectpattern still out there to best showcase such wonderful fabric! Believe me, I do empathize. I hope you can find the perfect patterns for some of these fabrics this year.

  6. Lovely fabrics. You definitely have a good start on the year’s sewing projects. Saying no to new fabrics is almost impossible while at MG; too many irresistible choices.

    • Glad to know I have a sympathetic reader when it comes to Mendel Goldberg Fabrics. I always say I am not going to get anything else and then I see something so glorious that I lose all my self control!

  7. Gosh, what a lovely collection of beautiful pieces. Can’t wait to see what they all become!

  8. So many lovelies. I’m rather partial to that first blue dotted fabric – and am intrigued to find out what you may have in mind for it! Here’s to some beautiful sewing in 2017 🙂

  9. Mery

    Each & every one so gorgeous that they’d be pretty made into simple sacks. Such a fun mystery waiting to see what you do with them. I am sooo happy to read that it’s gloves are back. I’ve always worn them but it has gotten harder to find ones I like. I got spoiled in 2000 when a retiring store owner unearthed a box of good kidskin ones from the early 60’s, all in my small size, deeply discounted, and in colors not available online. I enjoyed them so much that I determined to make replacements. Determination wasn’t enough. Vintage glove patterns are cheap and include all the necessary ease, and it’s easy to make their ugly tops plain straight. However, even Tandy’s all-lovely colors often don’t include what I want. Classic rosy beige is particularly hard to find and surprisingly plain toast color is rare. Not to mention just the right fun colors to match an outfit – powder blue, spring green, fall orange. Now that gloves are “in” finding just the right ones should be easier.

    • Hi Mery! Simple sacks would be easier than what I have planned! I might be wishing I had been less ambitious by the end of the year!
      It might take a while for the dress gloves to start showing up in the stores. This is my prediction, based on the gorgeous outfit our new First Lady wore on January 20th. The gloves made her ensemble complete, and I suspect – I hope – will start a new fashion trend… I agree, it is so difficult to find the perfect gloves, especially to match an outfit.

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