Monday, February 1, 2010

Amy Lyn's Stash and Pattern Attack Challenge

I never really realize how many patterns I had amassed over the years until I started cataloging them.  I knew I had boxes and bags and binders full but to see them all together is honestly overwhelming to me.  I remember coming across my mother’s patterns from the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s squirreled away in the laundry room cabinets when I was just starting to sew in the 80’s.  I knew then I had to have them and thus my pattern collecting began.

Over the years I’ve had several friends, family members and co-workers pass their patterns, notions and fabrics onto me.  Either they decided to stop sewing or lost a family member who sewed and thought I could do something with their stash rather than leaving it all out for the trash.  I’m forever grateful.

Also, I worked at a fabric store for 3 years and each season when they changed the pattern books they allowed employees to take whichever and however many patterns they wanted, for FREE.  You better believe I worked the pattern counter that night.  Luckily, with a pattern addiction the worst that can happen is paper cuts and an overflowing closet.

When I started on Etsy I told myself I was going to create a database of all my patterns and put them up for sale.  But, the more I went through my patterns stash the more I wanted to just sew every single one of them.  So, that’s what I’ve decided to do.  Ok, not EVERY one, but the ones that I can‘t stop looking at, the ones I can't bear to part with.  Here are a few paired with their designated fabrics:

So, I first separated the patterns I must make from the rest of my collection.  Next I went to my fabric stash and started pairing up patterns to fabrics.  Finally I folded the patterns inside the fabric and stacked in a storage bin.  (This is one of the bins)

These are the rules I made for myself for my Stash and Pattern Attack Challenge

Rule 1: Once fabric is paired with patterns there is no changing it.  (I’d spend all my time putting patterns with fabric and never get to sewing.)
Rule 2:  If the pattern chosen has multiple pieces and/or styles all must be made, but not necessarily at the same time or from the same fabric. 
Rule 3:  Chose what to make randomly.  Either reach into the bucket without looking and choose something or have my son Sam pick.
Rule 4: Make at least one Challenge piece a week.

And so, the first eco-friendly piece of clothing I made using a pattern from my collection is a size 5/6T girls sundress.  The pattern is not quite vintage, circa 1991.  The thread, fabric and elastic were “salvaged”, as in, they were new and unused, but bound for the trash if I didn’t take them in. 

As you can see, this pattern also includes a similar dress with a flounce hem and a jumpsuit.  So, back in the challenge box this pattern must go.

Now, I really hope my biggest challenge won’t be finding buyers for all the wonderful outfits I‘m making.

This jumper is now for sale on Green  Carbon and am always happy to take custom orders.

You can be a part of my challenge if you send me your size I will send to you jpegs of the patterns and fabric pairings I've created to choose from.  Make your selection and that pattern will be moved to the top of the list. I will only charge for my time but can guarantee you will get a GREAT deal for a well made one of a kind piece of clothing that you will love wearing.

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