SEW INSPIRED BY: Summer Sewing & TNT Patterns

by Jamie on October 8, 2015


As summer is around the corner in this part of the world and the days are looking brighter, my inclination for sewing things I can wear in the warmer weather is slowly increasing.

Usually around this time I notice sewing bloggers sharing their ideas and the things that are inspiring them for the sewing season ahead, so I thought I’d share my sewing aspirations with you too…

As I began to think about what I’d like in my wardrobe this summer, I kept coming back to the idea of wardrobe staples. Simple and no-fuss pieces are things I’m likely to wear. I’m pretty much a jeans and t-shirt gal – even in summer, so my look doesn’t deviate too much from that formula.

I try to keep those early-morning what-to-wear decisions as easy as possible. This allows much more head space for other things in my day. So, in planning what to sew this summer, my new sewing projects really need to re-invigorate, but fit nicely into my existing wardrobe.

Making time to sew for myself is still pretty new to me. Only recently have I had the opportunity to develop patterns that I want to wear. Given that I need to be economical with my time, I don’t want the patterns I make for myself to be just one-offs, but the type of patterns I will use again and again over various iterations.

I like the idea of creating my own library of ‘tried n’ true’ (TNT) patterns. A library of flattering shapes that fit me well and can be relied upon to replenish treasured wardrobe favorites. Once fully developed, those patterns could be the basis of many a new garment, each with unique variations in fabrics, trim and treatments. Who knows, a few could become sewing patterns for PSP…..

But I digress.

Here are some of my ideas for garments I’d like to sew and have fun with over the summer months.


Source – Resort Shirt Inspiration Pinterest

This shirt is a loose-fitting bowling shirt style, able to be tucked in or worn loose with denim jeans, relaxed pants or shorts. It would be a perfect sewing pattern to be made up in bold tropical prints as it has no obtrusive seam lines to interfere with the print design. I can see it being sewn in soft rayon, light cotton voile or peach skin silk and details could be added or changed, such as turned-up cuffs and pocket details to create diversity between garments.


Source – Relaxed Pant Inspiration Pinterest

For so many reasons I like wearing jeans and slim pants… but on the hot summer days they are not really practical. I own one loose-fitting pant with a drawstring waist which I tend to wear on the ‘I want to wear a pant, but it’s too hot’ days. This summer, I’d like to add another wide-leg pant to the stable, but this time with a more fitted waist to create a slimmer silhouette. Fabric used in this style could be linen, ramie, satin-back-crepe or even a stable mid-weight jersey… most likely in black or french navy, but I’d be open to a subtle print if I find something I like.


Source – Blouson Jacket Inspiration Pinterest

This is really a bomber-style jacket in lighter-weight fabric. A center front zip is required here and self-fabric-covered, wide elastic cuffs and hem band… Maybe even a flat or mandarin collar to change it up a bit. It could be sewn up in a soft, light-weight, even sheer fabric – printed or plain, I’m not that fussed.


Source – Kimono inspiration Pinterest

I’ve been seeing quite a few kimonos around lately. I’ve been particularly inspired by the costumes in the current series of Downton Abbey.  Michelle Dockery (Lady Mary) tends to wear the most beautiful kimono creations and I want one too… They can be worn as loungwear, over jeans or on the beach – pretty versatile really. Thinking practically, silk satin is probably out of the question. Maybe I can splurge on some beautifully printed silk crepe de chine for a bit of luxe. Or, for a more casual kimono, maybe a light knit, a floaty rayon, sheer cotton voile or a poly crepe de chine for a more economical make.


Source – Sweatshirt Inspiration Pinterest

The crew-neck sweat shirt, once a slouchy, casual, round-the-house sort of garment has come of age and is no longer only worn to the gym or made up in fleece – not that there is anything wrong with that.  The light-knit fabric I am thinking of sewing this top in makes it a ‘summer’ sweat shirt – but the sewing pattern could be used in heavier-weight knit fabrics for cooler weather. I can see this shape in a floral print with self fabric cuffs and neckband, instead of the typical ribbed bands of bygone days. To be honest, I recon I have the basis for this pattern with my recently drafted basic long-sleeve top with crewneck option. I made this top up in black bamboo jersey as well as a turtle-neck option and wrote about it here.


Source – Woven Polo Shirt Inspiration Pinterest

The shape I am proposing is roomy with drop-shoulders – the hemline mid-hip and perhaps even side splits. I can see it sewn up in a light woven print or plain with contrast collar and placket detail.

I have collected a few more ideas on my Pinterest site if you are interested.

So that is all for now.  Hopefully I can make a few of these garments a reality and add to my TNT pattern library before the summers end.

Sew, Wear, Love