No purchase neccesary anywhere; this contest is open to anyone with a needle and thread, regardless of budget or availability of items. Just jump in and join the fun.
When SG ran the first SWAP contest after Julie Culshaw gave it to us, we switched the emphasis from "wardrobing" to "sewing". Several people told us how happy they were that sewing was the main point, because SG is foremost a sewing board. Thereafter, the "sewing" aspect has been the primary focus. However, last year's challenge was an undeniable flop. Lots of people made plans, a few bought supplies, a few made a garment or three...but only two people finished. A wide variety of reasons were offered, ranging from other life challenges to simply feeling overwhelmed with the rules. I want to continue keeping "sewing" as the main focus of our contest; however, I also want everyone to end the challenge with a wardrobe of gorgeous clothing.
There is, today, also a thread in the "chatter" section discussing sewing success rates. An informal poll has revealed that a large number of our members still struggle with wadders and failures. But the tip-over point seems to be fitting, and working with NEW patterns. Whether they are purchased or self-drafted, a set of basic patterns that result in successful garments on a consistent basis helps ensure that sewing time results in wearable garments. And that those that still fail don't make the sewist feel like a failure -sometimes, the pattern or garment just doesn't work.
This year, our SWAP will focus on fitting, and making tried-and-true patterns: testing and fitting paper patterns, muslins, and fashion garments that will help lower the overall sewing failure rates, result in fabulous clothing to be proud of, and (hopefully) give every contestant a pattern or two that works every time it is used.
Choose any seven garments from this list:
Button Down Shirt w/Collar
Blouse or shirt (collar is optional)
Shorts or Capri Pants
Jacket (jean jacket, windbreaker, hoodie, etc.)
Coat (suit or sport coat)
Overcoat or Raincoat
Bathing Suit & Coverup
From those seven, choose four to make twice for a total of 11 garments that will work together. Those four may either be repeated garments from the same pattern, or one each from two different patterns.
It doesn't matter what styles you choose, but *do* keep in mind these should be patterns you will be using over and over in the future, so keep 'em simple with lots of room for future alterations, changes and embellishments. You will probably want to make a test muslin of each pattern, so that any fitting issues can be addressed early on.
If you already have a full set of basic patterns, this is your opportunity to expand a bit. You may have all the coats and coat patterns you'll ever need, so you can skip that and make two skirts instead. For those of you who rarely wear pants, I'm allowing you to choose another skirt or dress to substitute for a pants-type bottom. This is only to prevent you from having to make a garment that will rarely or never be worn just for the sake of this contest, and only because the main idea of this year's contest is to make patterns that will be used over and over. If pants (or shorts or jeans or whatever) are regular part of your wardrobe, you should make pants instead. If you are using this option to make an extra skirt or dress, remember that you will get more mileage if you use seperate patterns that use different construction techniques or are fitted differently (i.e. one woven, and one knit).
There is no requirement regarding the type of fabric, whether you use solids or prints, or a certain number of tops and bottoms. At the end, you should simply have eleven garments that fit you nicely, will live together peacefully in the same closet, and be wearable -often- together. We're not looking for the most breathtaking garments; we're looking for the ones that fit the best and will work hardest as wardrobe staples.
Sewing will begin December 26th, and all garments must be finished by April 30th, 2012. Muslins, pattern fitting and cutting may be started whenever you are ready.
Two garments may be sewn before the official sewing start date.
You'll need to take a minimum of six photos, maximum 12 will be accepted. Please keep a copy of all images you upload on your hard drive in case SG's server fails or something is accidentally deleted.
The photos may be on you, on a dress form or any other way which shows them well.
You should show how you plan to combine tops and bottoms, and together should show everything. You’ll probably need to photograph some bottoms more than once.
Composites will be allowed, but only if they show details of the same outfit, e.g. a back view, a close up or the “before” photo if you are recycling. You may not show two different outfits on the same photo; such photos won’t be posted!
A single photo showing all the items together will be allowed but not required.
Please number your photos and then add a brief note to describe each one and when you plan to wear it, e.g. 1) Pink cotton Jalie top with khaki poly/cotton BWOF pants; weekend shopping.
Details about where the photos will be sent or uploaded will be forthcoming.
Finally, this year, the individual threads are optional. Individuals fitting issues should be posted on the "individual projects" board: http://artisanssquare.com/sg/index.php/board,11.0.html
so that threads in the SWAP section aren't overwhelming for the moderators. Please note these rules are final, and no more changes will be made. However, I'm always willing to answer any questions or clarify things that aren't clear enough.
Edited for spelling and grammer and syntax and to remove coffee stain.