Sewing a Spring Break Capsule Wardrobe

I love Spring Break! Warm sun, sand, a southern location. It gets me invigorated again. And as all sewists know, there’s nothing more fun than planning a trip AND sewing for it! My 2017 capsule wardrobe for Spring Break features three independent designers*: Christine Jonson Patterns, HotPatterns and Ann Normandy Patterns. All three are well-drafted by professional sewing pattern designers and produced in digital download formats.

Spring Break Sewing Pattern Capsule Wardrobe

Christine Jonson Perfect Pants Classic Wide Leg

First, I selected pants. I live in a cold climate and I have to wear pants on the taxi / bus / plane trip. I chose the Christine Jonson Perfect Pant in classic wide leg – nothing more perfect than a palazzo style pant for the beach. Yum! I dived into my stash and found a deep purple rayon/lycra, which will be drapey and still substantial enough with the folded over doubled yoga waistband that these pants feature.

Then, I added in the Hot Patterns Urban Gypsy off the shoulder blouse. This blouse features a built-in bra, so you can really wear it strapless. I chose a lightweight floral cotton lawn fabric from stash that a friend gave me. Cost? $0.

Hot Patterns Urban Gypsy

Christine Jonson Draped Vest & Jacket

I really wanted a vest and cardigan, so I selected the Christine Jonson Drape Vest & Jacket. This waterfall cardigan and vest is pretty ingenious; there’s a small H-shaped pleat in the front that helps hold the cardigan’s shape and neckline drape. Leave it to Christine to design this and tweak every tiny detail to perfection. THIS is why I sew independent patterns from actual fashion designers – they know their stuff. I’ll make the vest in a near-army-green crinkle rayon knit and the cardi in a dusty smoke blue crinkle rayon knit.


Last, I’m a sucker for a great maxi dress, and I chose the Ann Normandy maxi. I’m interested in this because when I inherited a lot of woven fabrics from friends (I have a large stash of knit fabrics), I wanted a pattern to help me sew these fabrics up. I’ve chosen a navy blue textured cotton – not the heavy linen the pattern loves, but pretty close in hand and drape to it.

Here’s how I’ll wear it:

Travel days: I’ll wear the Classic Wide Leg Perfect Pants from Christine Jonson with a simple tee and the Drape Jacket. Most likely this will be worn with a Gore tex parka (because, winter) and my running shoes (because, small suitcase, and chasing six and nine year old kids.) We fly through Metro Detroit, and if you’ve ever been in the Delta (McNamara) terminal there, there’s a giant fountain as you enter the main departures hall after security. It takes my son eleven seconds to run from the escalators after security to the fountain and climb on it while I am still fumbling with our carry on luggage and shoes! I love business travel for the simple reason that I get to walk silently with a cup of coffee, my roller bag behind me, looking calm and collected. When I travel with my loveable yahoos, I’m hollering all over the airport.

Upon arrival (at 11:30pm), I’ll collapse into bed, BUT the next day, at the Hilton (most likely; we move around during our trip, staying in up to three different hotels depending on our location and activities) I will don a swimsuit and the Ann Normandy maxi dress and head to breakfast and then the pool. I’m excited about making this dress for the first time because of the design details. These are elegant details on a simple dress. I’ll wear this with t-strap flat sandals.

For sightseeing, I’ll wear a tee with the Christine Jonson Drape Vest and (most likely) white shorts.

Dinner out will almost require the HotPatterns Urban Gypsy. I love this look and will wear it with the Christine Jonson Perfect Pant again. I think the Christine Jonson Draped Vest will be perfect over this, too, giving a cold-shoulder look to the outfit. Definitely flat strappy sandals with this look.

I can mix and match things all week long, by adding two basic tee shirts, two pairs of shorts and swimsuits. I always pack running gear and try to run every day I am on vacation, unless I’m walking around at a Disney park, in which case the 10 miles of walking will be sufficient!  There’s nothing that makes me happier than sewing…and traveling, and sewing capsule wardrobes is my kind of perfect!

*complete disclosure: I work with all three of these sewing pattern companies in some marketing capacity, and I consider them friends.  They make great sewing patterns, that’s why I love them.

Ann Normandy Maxi Dress




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