Shopping and Sewing with a Purpose

It has gone way past the time I should have flipped my closet to warmer weather clothing.  I have been pulling things out from under dry cleaner bags for almost two months now.   The winter sweaters were still occupying the prime real estate in the closet, making it a pain to get dressed for work in the morning.  Thanks to fellow blogger Kathy in Ozarks, who was talking about cleaning her closet this week, I finally got to it. She posed the question, do you have clothes you just cannot part with? Apparently, I do!  Last winter I did a post on how to analyze your wardrobe, so I put those principles into practice again with the summer clothes.

Closet 10

Pulling out the summer stuff, there wasn’t that much actually. Summer isn’t my favorite time of year, I really hate the heat.  Still, I found a few things that could go to the Humane Society thrift store to make room for something new.  I took a good look at what I was keeping and decided on some rules for shopping.

1. No more black, it is summer for crying out loud, yet the stores are full of black.
2. No solid color tops, this wardrobe desperately needs prints, find at least two.
3. Find a short sleeve, lightweight, not-bolero-style shrug to go over the sleeveless shells for work.
4. Buy only what can be worn at least two other items.
5. Buy only what will go with what I already own.
6. Buy only what fits now, not what might fit 10 pounds from now.
7. Look for new lingerie.

Sleeveless shells

Did I mention that I am a Macy’s freak, and it was the day of their One Day Sale? I had a gift card burning a hole in my pocket, and today was a good day to use it. It takes an hour to drive to Macy’s in South Carolina, but it is worth it to me. I never take anyone with me shopping, as I don’t know another soul that can spend four hours in one store, trying on different things. And I didn’t even go to the shoe or accessories departments!

Believe it or not, targeted shopping with specific goals makes shopping easier. I am not distracted by the other pretties, OK maybe for a few minutes, but I stayed true to the plan. Only things that fit the rules went to the dressing room. I tried on probably 30-35 things, and came home with four.  All were on sale, the light green t-shirt was 80% off!

Shopping With A Purpose at From My Carolina Home

Nothing is black, the polka dot is navy. The two tops are prints. The white crochet shrug is goal #3. The polka dot can be worn with the white shrug or a red one I already have.  I actually am amazed that the crocheted look is still current.  I was hoping for something a bit different, like a cotton short sleeve cropped shirt that could be used as a jacket.

Shopping With A Purpose at From My Carolina Home

The pink floral, short sleeve, cotton sweater has a cute print, is lightweight, and goes with three of my solid color sleeveless shell tops so it also fits #3.

Shopping With A Purpose at From My Carolina Home

The T-shirt was just too cute, and can be worn with shorts or jeans, alone or under a sweater.

Shopping With A Purpose at From My Carolina Home

DH will be pleased to find out that the balance of the gift card went to new lingerie, all on sale, goal #7 achieved.

So how does this relate to sewing?  The rules can still apply for no black, more prints, and choosing a pattern that will be versatile.  I still need more prints in my closet, so I will look for a cute pattern and sew these rayons into tops for work.  I could also make a lightweight cotton jacket to go over those shells that might be more of what I am looking for.


Thanks, Kathy, for inspiring me to get off my duff and get the summer wardrobe in better shape.

Do you shop and sew with a purpose or rules?

11 thoughts on “Shopping and Sewing with a Purpose

  1. Great choices on the shopping spree and I love the fabrics. I switched my closets out last month and purged big time with a huge bag going to Goodwill and some tops going to a friend at work who needed some new dudes. It feel good to purge. 🙂 and since I”m not working full time any more I didn’t feel the need to replace anything ….yet 🙂

  2. Rosemaryflower

    Lovely collection of colors and new tops
    Well, I love Macy’s and I loved Hechts, I also loved Woodward and Lothrop.
    I do not like Nordstroms at all. They have terrible stuff.
    Anyway, I have not been shopping much. God gave me a stick body, so I have to shop in the teen section or very petite section for some things (I am tall and I have long arms)
    I did go to Walmart and picked up some tank tops in various colors.
    I hate summer too. I am in Northern Virginia as you know, and it is most of the time really intolerable here as well.
    quite honestly, 65º is about my limit.
    You made some great choices. I love the linen fabrics too

  3. Nancy

    Love your choices in garments here – nice prints and colors. I agree, reorganizing of one`s clothing is needed periodically – I have been doing some of that, myself. Have been retired for a number of years, so don`t need as much anymore, yet I am a fabricaholic and love it all and color attracts me, too. Have a difficult time parting with some things, there is too much hanging around for too long and not being used — or adjustments can be made to some. I still like the prints among them and would wear them if I made fit adjustments. The fit issue is because over the years, wearing things loosely fitting is not longer desirable.
    My figure is slim enough that ready mades are usually too roomy in the shoulder/sleeve/side seam area, yet I am not one to be comfortable with too close fitting garments either. There is a happy medium there somewhere and begins with the width of the shoulder seam to determine the sides of a garment. Another issue for me is the way fabric is in garments today — don`t like alot of it. Cotton seems so thin in tops — and I have never been a fan of “slippery” fabric except for rayon challis. The synthetics, whatever they all are today are not a draw for me. Even in fabric yardage, it is more difficult to find some types I used to get — for example, more polyester percentage, than cotton in T-shirt knit and even the sweatshirt fleece, if you like it, isn`t the same feel/weight/combo blend it used to be. I still have alot of yardage around here from the older times, so I have option if I just get busy with the use of them.
    Love your blogs, and you are so diverse in things you share. I have wondered how you touch on so many areas and are still working, too, as I learned in your words. I also garden — enjoy the colorful bounty, plus some food items along the way, too. I also have been sewing for years — love your sharing there, too — Don`t do much variety cooking in more recent years due to dietary changes — am single and eat more simply.

  4. I have to stop by Kathy’s to check out that post….but with that said…I hate to shop!!! HATE IT!!! I have long legs, long arms, short torso and it’s hard. Someone once told be I have a bird frame?? LOL!!! And my nickname in highschool was Olive Oyl. I have my school(work) wardrobe which I’m thinking this summer of cleaning things out and going for the classic Eddie Bauer/Gap look. I think I have four pairs of danskos….they are wonderful for teaching on my feet all day. Summer wardrobe consist of a whole rainbow of Life is GOod t-shirts, sleeveless and short sleeve. (They are such a cool, comfy shirt…well worth their price) and Columbia shorts and teva sandels. Once I do find pants or shorts that fit and I like, I usually buy atleast three pairs. I love jeans….I’m definiely a less is more kind of girl and like coordinates. Little cardigans and scarves are fun assessories for me. PS I just love your little bike/cafe top…perfect for summer~

  5. Jan Beckert

    I hate to shop, too. I never go to a store unless I’m looking for a specific thing. Of course, I know it will go with everything, whatever I get. I finally live somewhere that fits my wardrobe.

  6. I really enjoyed reading how you have put thought into sorting your summer wardrobe. I have just done the same with my wardrobe but I only have summer! This means that you live with the same wardrobe year in and year out when actually I should be analising the wardrobe as if I have seasons. Like you, I think reading Style blogs has really helped me focus the importance of having a small but functional wardrobe. Enjoy your summer and your newly organised wardrobe.

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