I started sewing my 2009 SWAP garments during my 2 week holiday vacation. I spent a lot of time and effort planning prior to that. Some of it wasted on daydreaming about the lifestyle and the clothes I would like to make versus what my lifestyle really requires.Digging through my stash for coordinating fabrics, and perusing pattern magazines. I was ambivalent about churning out 11 garments for my current lifestyle and size again this year. I decided to incorporate a personal sewing/development goal into my SWAP. I want to improve my pattern drafting skills, so I challenged myself to draft all the patterns from instructions in the various Japanese pattern magazines I have accumulated. I chose the challenging "SWAP Trail". Most of the garments I chose came from issues of Lady Boutique, a Japanese monthly pattern magazine that features garments for the "housewife". The styles in Lady Boutique are a bit more conservative and traditional (Western style) than the other well known Japanese pattern magazine Mrs Stylebook. The quality of the photographs and printed pages are not as "glossy", and the age of the models is older (30, 40 and 50’s). There are lots of jackets and skirts, with a smaller number of knit tops, blouses and pants. The styles I selected are similar to those found in the big four pattern brands; Vogue, McCalls, etc., and that is actually my safety net. I wanted to be able to compare my drafted patterns to ones I had already made or that I knew would fit me based on past experience. And if I really start struggling with the drafted patterns, I wanted the option of abandoning them and switching to the big four patterns. Here is my storyboard.
and my fabrics.
Drafting instructions and pictures from the magazine are in my Flickr SWAP 2009 folder (link is on sidebar)
So far I am doing well. I have made wearable muslins of 2 blouses, 1 pair of pants and the jacket. And have completed one blouse and pair of pants. All were "learning experiences". More to come in the near future.