Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Summer Essentials Sew-Along 2011!

Hello everybody! Summer is just around the corner and I'm terribly excited and so looking forward to BBQs, lemonade, ice-cream, tanning lotion, swimming in the lake, popsicles - not to mention breezy summer skirts, sundresses, floaty blouses... It really is one of my favorite times of the year! :) Also, today I can unveil for you the awesome project I mentioned in my last post: the Summer Essentials Sew-along 2011, which Ali has asked me (and Sarah from Rhinestones and Telephones) to help her co-host this year!

This is the very first sew-along I'm (co-)hosting, and it feels all the more special to me because last year's Summer Essentials was the first sew-along I'd ever participated in, and also the first time I actually got serious about sewing! Looking back, I think the communality of the SESA2010 and Self-Stitched September are a large part of the reason why I kept sewing as an active hobby rather than an occasional one (which is what usually happens with my hobbies after a while... ;) So, thanks Ali, for letting me join in!

Now, with no further ado, I'll let the lady herself explain about her fabulous idea for the sew-along:

"In an effort to be as laid back as summer heat inspires, the Summer Essentials Sew-Along asks participants to sew five(-ish) warm-weather friendly pieces by August(-ish), ‘cause wouldn’t you rather spend August looking fabulous in your homemade threads? The goal: Stock your closet with quality summer basics. The benefit: A group of sewers who will encourage and inspire you, not to mention talk you off the ledge when you need it (this may be me, ladies, when I attempt the swimsuit)!

To me, there are six categories of summer wear. Feel free to add to this, but this is just to start us thinking of what you need/want.

Poolside Pretties: Anything that cools or dries you off when there’s lots of sun and water around. One and two-piece swimsuits, swimsuit cover-ups, surf shorts, sun hats, oh my! One versatile swimsuit cover-up I find lovely is a terry cloth dress. Double-duty, that’s what I’m talking about.

Clam Diggers & Co.: Bifurcated bottoms of every style and length, from flowing linen pants to short-shorts and all the inbetweens—clam diggers, pedal pushers, Bermuda shorts, etc.

Sweet & Sassy Skirts: Prints and solids, short and long, low-slung and high-waisted. But most of all: Airy, flirty, flattering.

The Sundress: Need I say more? To me, the perfect sun dress strikes that cord between casual and elegant—arms and collarbones, looking good barefoot or high-heeled. It’s something you can wear to both a barbecue and a summer wedding. A summer staple I’ve never owned until now.

Tees, Tunics & Blouses: Yes, please! I’m finally understanding the worth of blouses as they also strike that balance between casual/formal, totally versatile. I’m also thinking mini-dresses that do triple duty as tunics, dresses and cover-ups.

Those Summer Nights: Pullovers, cardis and hoodies may be the last thing you’re thinking of with the mercury rising, but there’s those cool summer nights, not to mention every last establishment with the air con blasting. Or: for those of you where thunderstorms are a daily summer experience, a lightweight trench?"

Thanks to Stephanie, we also have a new category this year: Accessorize Me! Big floppy hats, beach totes, embellished flip flops, handmade jewellery, or other pretty things that snazzy up your accessories are a great fit.

This fits exceptionally well with my own tentative sewing plans for summer and Me-Made June. Of course, I'm pants at making plans and actually sticking to them (an example: things planned for the Colette Spring Palette Challenge, 3; things actually finished, 1; though the other 2 are in progress, I swear!) but I've planned on making at least one of each category, possibly more. More detailed plans forthcoming!

What are your sewing plans for summer? Anything similar to this? Anything radically different? I'm definitely looking forward to seeing what Ali, Sarah and everyone else come up with!

If you want to sew with us, all you need to do is join the flickr group and post your name and/or blog in the member list. Starting date is the 1st of June!

Also, here are some very awesome badges (including the code to put them in your blog!) that Sarah put together!


  1. Great post, fellow co-host! I'm looking forward to getting started! :)

  2. Wonderful post! Hooray for working Blogger so I can comment now! Can't wait to your summer essentials!

  3. Excited to see you co-hosting this with some other lovely bloggers!

  4. I would so love to join in, but am in the wrong hemisphere for this challenge! I am certainly sewing some essentials, but of the winter-y variety...
    looking forward to seeing some of your summery essentials during Me-Made June11!

  5. I've just signed up for this - I can't wait to get started ;)

  6. Can't wait to join and see you hosting the SAL with the others. Congratulations on this new challenge! Are you off from classes/practice during the summer?

  7. Yay for everybody who signed up, I can't wait to see what you come up with!
    @Sewing Princess: Oh, that would be nice... sadly, I've only just reached half-time for the semester, class-time last until mid-July. But I don't have lectures every morning, so I try to sew during that time, a couple of times a week, and later in the evenings. :)