2015 Spring and Summer Sewing Plans

If you follow Colette Patterns’ blog, Coletterie, then you might be familiar with the Wardrobe Architect series. Essentially, it’s a 14-week challenge aimed at creating a succinct, meaningful personal wardrobe. Weekly themes see seamsters defining a core style, exploring silhouettes, picking a color palette, and finally choosing and sewing a capsule wardrobe.

I found out about the series several weeks into this year’s challenge and thought it sounded like a fabulous idea—if only I’d stumbled across it in January. Maybe next year I’ll take the plunge and complete the series from start to finish. This time around, I’m simply taking inspiration from current and past Wardrobe Architect posts. If anything, I’m just glad that the series reintroduced Polyvore back into my life.

Polyvore’s collage function is super fun to play around with and—as you can see above—I’ve already taken advantage of it to create a small but curated plan for my spring and summer wardrobe. For now, I’m focusing on six items that I’m positive will get a good deal of wear, maaaaybe with the exception of the bold floral shift. (It’s spring, let me LIVE A LITTLE.) And now for the plans:

(imagine this without sleeves)

Sleeveless Button Up

Pattern: Grainline Studio’s Archer Button Up

Sewn it already? yes, but this time I’ll use Jen’s pattern tutorial to create a sleeveless version

Possible fabric: solid color; silk, lightweight cotton, lightweight chambray

Scout Tee

Solid Knit Tee

Pattern(s): Grainline Studio’s Scout Tee or Deer and Doe’s Plantain T-Shirt

Sewn it already? yes, both patterns multiple times

Possible fabric: I’d love to find a hunter green similar to the one in the collage above; ponte knit or something similarly sturdy

this, without the gathered cuffs

Floral Shift Dress

Pattern: Colette Patterns’ Laurel

Sewn it already? nope, but it’s bought and patiently waiting in my stash

Fabric: this bright Kaffe Fassett print, which I recently bought online for the sole purpose of creating a floral Laurel. I’m praying I don’t hate it when I rip open the box.

Maritime Shorts

Printed Shorts

Pattern(s): not quite sure yet; I’m considering Grainline’s Maritime Shorts, Sewaholic’s Thurlow Shorts, and Dixie DIY’s Movies in the Park Shorts

Sewn it already? none of ’em!

Fabric: I guess it depends on which pattern I choose, but a printed denim or twill would be cool

to bow or not to bow is the burning question

Full Skirt

Pattern: Deer and Doe’s Chardon Skirt

Sewn it already? no, but I’ve admired this stunner from afar on the likes of several different bloggers

Fabric: dunno yet—so many options—v. overwhelmed

the woven version will ditch the cuffs and maybe the drawstring

Woven Straight Leg Pants

Pattern: True Bias’s Hudson Pants

Sewn it already? yup, two pairs in knit fabric. I’ll use Kelli’s woven Hudson tutorial to make this pair.

Fabric: something breezy but opaque; maybe a lightweight cotton?

And there you have it: six items that I’m hoping will not only come to fruition but also get a lot of wear this coming spring and summer. Here’s hoping the sewing is as fun as the planning! Do you have any seasonal wardrobe plans?

Click here for details about the items shows above.

Paloma with Rosemary Simple Syrup

rosemary paloma tequila cocktail recipe

It’s just not time for “pumpkin” everything yet. I like Dunkin’ Donuts’ pumpkin-flavored coffee and Southern Tier’s Pumking beer as much as the next person, but we all know fall doesn’t technically start until September 23. Therefore, I’m milking this whole summer cocktail thing for another glorious 11 days.

If you like grapefruit cocktails, you’re probably familiar with the Paloma. The most simple versions mix grapefruit-flavored soda with tequila, served over ice. I recently made the drink with tequila and Q Grapefruit (think a much less sugary, more tart version of San Pellegrino soda), and it turned out pretty refreshing. To take it a step further, I used fresh grapefruit juice (white, in this case) and sweetened it with homemade rosemary simple syrup. I followed the Kitchn’s recipe for the SS, which pretty much involves bringing sugar, water, and rosemary sprigs to a boil, setting the mixture aside to cool, and straining it. It’s so easy, yet it elevates a homemade cocktail tenfold and makes your kitchen smell prettay, prettay delicious. Give it a try!

rosemary paloma cocktail recipe

Rosemary Paloma

  • 2 oz. blanco tequila
  • 3 oz. fresh grapefruit juice
  • 1–1.5 tablespoons rosemary simple syrup (recipe from the Kitchn)
  • Club soda
  • Coarse salt, lime wedge, and rosemary sprig for garnish

Moisten the rim of a highball glass with a lime wedge and twist it in coarse salt. Fill the glass with ice. In a shaker filled with ice, combine the tequila, grapefruit juice, and simple syrup. Shake until chilled and and pour into the highball glass. Top off with club soda, and garnish with a lime wedge and a rosemary sprig.

rosemary paloma tequila cocktail recipe

Cheers! And may we all enjoy this last week of summer without hearing the phrase “Pumpkin Spice Latte” 8,000 times.

guava mojito recipe

Guava Mojito Recipe

The mojito might be the most polarizing drink on the Internet. Stirred, shaken, or just plain poured? Simple syrup or sugar? And then, what kind of sugar—coarse or confectioners’? Is it okay to add a flavor?

So. Many. Questions.

Maybe one day I’ll subscribe to the whole “there’s a right and a wrong way to make a cocktail” mantra, but for now, I’m going with what tastes good. And if there’s one tasty cocktail that I’ve been jonesing for to remind me that summer still exists, it’s the mojito. More specifically, the delicious fresh guava mojito at Paladar Cuban Restaurant and Rum Bar in Logan Square. It was really love at first sip with that cocktail, and I’ve been unable to order anything else with my cuban sandwich ever since.

guava mojito recipe

To make my own version, I had every intention of buying a whole guava and trying to puree it in my blender. Unfortunately, Mariano’s produce department forsook me and I was forced to buy bottled guava nectar. The brand I bought, Hero, turned out to be pretty delicious, plus it doesn’t have any pesky high-fructose corn syrup.

guava mojito ingredients

I used Cruzan white rum, because apparently white rum is the one absolutely necessary component to a mojito—the brown stuff just won’t do. Feel free to play around with the proportions of this recipe or swap out the guava nectar for another juice.

Guava Mojito

  • 10 fresh mint leaves
  • Juice of half a lime
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon cane sugar (to taste)
  • 3 oz. guava nectar
  • 1.5 oz. light rum
  • Crushed ice
  • Soda water

In a tall glass, gently muddle together the mint, lime juice, and sugar until very fragrant. If you’re like me and don’t have a muddler handy, the back of a wooden spoon works just fine. Add a generous amount of crushed ice, then top with the rum and guava nectar. You can adjust the amount of sugar or guava nectar depending on your desired sweetness. Fill the glass to the top with soda water, and give it a quick stir. It might not be traditional or “right,” but hopefully it’ll be tasty and refreshing!

guava mojito recipe

Have you made mojitos at home before? Any tried-and-true tips or tricks?