Summary of my bright project 333 summer capsule wardrobe

Summary of my bright project 333 summer capsule wardrobe

Time for the big project 333 reveal!

In reality the time it has taken me to sew and then blog about the projects means I am actually packing away this Summer 333 capsule and getting out my autumn capsule at the moment.

Project 333 is all about dressing with less and on her blog Courtney Carver outlines the rules and gives lots of ideas on approaching it. She also runs a course to help people follow this project to simplify life. The thing I love about her approach is that although there are suggestions on try it is very much up to the individual to adapt the project to fit them. I don’t follow the strictest regime and it has altered over time!

Initially, when I started last year, I followed Courtney’s advice to clear out all the clothes I didn’t choose for my capsule into my storage areas (where I keep off season clothes). When I started I was actually doing project 663  as I would have 33 items of clothing for work and 33 casual for 3 months. The fact that I still had clothes in my storage areas shows that I have too many clothes! My quest was to simplify my wardrobe with the aim of gradually whittling down to having only well made items I love in my wardrobe. However, I want to do this over years. Although I want to cut down on my clothes where possible I want to reuse or recycle items so I want to think carefully about it. I am now doing project 333 to cover both work and casual but don’t necessarily include accessories or shoes in the 33 (in reality I rarely wear accessories and tend to stick to 2 pairs of shoes during a season).

At the end of each 3 months I assess the clothes I have worn and those I am choosing for the next season to decide if it is time to let items go. Over my first year I have found that I usually prefer to use non-traditional neutrals- I’m not big on wearing lots of black, brown, grey, white or beige! On me they tend to be a bit meh! They obviously have their uses so I haven’t necessarily thrown them out. However, I have found that I tend to be choosing my own non-traditional neutrals as I put together my capsule. While doing Project 333 I have become more confident in the colours I like to wear and want to wear- most of the items I’ve recycled or repurposed have been those in colours that don’t really do a lot for me. Where I loved the material and cut  of an item I’ve dyed it a colour that suits me better. I have also sorted out any clothes which I feel are aspirational and don’t suit my current lifestyle. Where possible I am restyling these to fit my requirements so I actually wear them.

When I look in my storage areas now I have a restricted pallette of colours but all ones I like to wear (the same for my fabric stash for sewing). Just before the next season starts I have a quick look at colour trends online and in shops. I usually find a few trends which fit in with colours I have and these are usually the colours I tend to use for my capsule. My Summer capsule is unusual since most of it can be casual wear so I decided to minimise my neutrals. When it is not Summer I will usually have a more traditional neutral in my wardrobe. I generally pull out all the clothes suitable for the season in my proposed colours onto my clothes rack. I then try and choose about 40 items- a mixture of plains and prints in these colours. After a couple of days I re-examine and whittle down to 33, making sure they can mix and match as much as possible. I also put together a list of any items I think need replacing or that I know I haven’t worn so much. I plan to sew or refashion these items. As I make the new items I replace the old ones during the project so by the end of the 3 months I should find I am happily wearing all 33 items.

For my summer wardrobe I decided to use mainly pink and purple with some aqua and berry plus the odd neutral item. When I made my selection I realised that I really needed more shorts- initially I used a beige pair while I made two new pairs. I wanted some more patterned tops and I also really needed summer skirts (a lot of these were replacing tops and skirts that were getting very worn, some because they were second had when I got them). I made a list and made the new items.

Once I had finished my sewing my Summer capsule was as follows

Of these tops 7 were ones I had bought new and 4 had been bought in charity shops (all bought before the project). 3 were sewn by me (pink and berry tunic, pink and berry gypsy top and knit purple and pink top).

Of these skirts 2 were bought new, 1 from a charity shop and 5 were made (Pink & berry with flower embellishment, pink wiggle skirt, purple flower knit, reversible pink satin/ purple and multicolour flower).

Of these 7 were bought new and 2 pairs of shorts made (Pink and berry shorts and berry shorts).

This is the first Project 333 I have done where I hadn’t filled up gaps by buying new clothes and sewed them instead. Hopefully these will last well! There is only one of these items that still needs to be replaced- the purple t-shirt from the charity shop (£1) isn’t in very good condition. I do have some purple knit fabric so I should be able to sew a replacement.

Anyone else trying project 333? Have you tried moving away from traditional neutrals?

Sewing the last item for my project 333 summer capsule wardrobe

Sewing the last item for my project 333 summer capsule wardrobe

This is my last make for my Project 333 summer capsule wardrobe. Tomorrow you’ll get to see all 33 pieces.

I used the pattern from my Sew Serendipity book. I love this book- the great way of mixing fabrics and I adore the finishing touches to the garments. I made the same version skirt as last time. I’ve shown it here with the purple vest top I’ll be using in my capsule.

I decided that I wanted to tie in the fabrics a bit more. On the last skirt I did this based on the embellishments described in the book plus one of my own design. This time I wanted to pull some of the pattern from the top of the skirt into the bottom section. I found a swirl stamp that had been free with the June 2012 issue of craft stamper magazine that made a good match for the swirl in the middle of the flower pattern. It was a grungy swirl by artistic stamper.
I have several methods of stamping on fabrics. I usually make a colour swatch of the various inks I have. This time the colour Celadon in my Versacraft ink pads gave me the best match to the aqua colour swirl in my flower fabric. I then stamped my pattern around the bottom section of my skirt using my bar stamping gear. I made my skirt first and marked the centre front and back at the bottom with a water-soluble pen. I then used the bar to stamp the swirl at set intervals. The pictures also show the top stitching. I do feel this makes it seem a bit more professional. What do you think?

Very difficult to get the swirl to show up in photos!

That is my last make for my summer project 333 capsule wardrobe. Tomorrow you’ll get to see all the project 333 items (just as I put them away and get out my Autumn project 333 capsule!!)
Here are the links for all the posts in the series so far

Other posts in my sewing for summer project 333 capsule wardrobe series

Sewing a Summer capsule wardrobe for project 333- skirt 1

Sewing a Summer capsule wardrobe for project 333- skirt 1

Having realised I had gaps in my summer capsule wardrobe for project 333 I had decided to use makower quilting cotton fabrics to make some items to plug these gaps. So far I’ve posted my first pair of shorts and top. Today it is time for my first skirt.
Once again I wanted to try the pattern from my Sew Serendipity book.


I loved the top I made from this book and the skirt also has lots of potential. Once again there are different versions you can make and it is perfect for matching fabrics.

I made slight alterations to the embellishments- I added the flower embellishment. I made this by using spare medallion fabric (the bottom band of the skirt) and cutting out various size circles using the pattern as a guide. I then sewed them together in the middle, added a bead to the top and attached a brooch pin to the back. Attaching it to the skirt with a brooch pin means I can remove it when washing but I can also use it with other outfits in my capsule wardrobe.

Once again I found the book very easy to follow and found the instructions gave a more proffesional looking finish than many of the others I have tried (again it suggests top and edgestitching and I really liked the way this looks). There are several variations of the skirt which I look forward to trying.

This is the skirt with the top I made.

Other posts on sewing my project 333 for Summer

Shorts 1
Top 1
Top 2

Skirt 4