Last summer, we did one of my all-time favorite make-alongs in the history of the blog, and I’m thrilled that so many of you have been imploring me to host it again. Of course, I’m talking about Summer of Basics! Wherein we each made 3 high-closet-value garments in the space of 3 months, either knitted, sewn, or any combination of the two. It was a season of so much camaraderie, so many people stretching their skills, so many fantastic garments! So yes, by all means, let’s do it again. Same time period as last year: June 1 through August 31.
I’ll have more to say at kickoff — will there be co-conspirators? prizes? tune in to find out! — but for the moment, I just want to make it official that it’s happening, and to re-clarify two things about the event:
It’s called Summer of Basics simply because that’s when it happens. It isn’t about making summer clothes specifically. You may make whatever you want/need the most, for whichever season! (Last year, I made pants, a button-up shirt and a wool fisherman’s sweater.) And there’s no getting around the fact that it’s winter for our friends in AUS/NZ, sorry!, but please don’t let that deter you from participating!
This is shorthand for “clothes your overall wardrobe will greatly benefit from” — workhorses, building blocks, go-to’s, whatever you want to call them. Things that make it easier to get dressed in the morning. Fundamental pieces your closet is lacking and that you will get a lot of wear out of. Don’t let anyone — least of all me — define what is a “basic” for you! We are all very different people, and that is the beauty of life on this planet. If you will get tremendous mileage out of a rainbow cardigan, please make that! If what you need is a pair of simple black pants, knock yourself out. If you want suggestions for straightforward but highly adaptable patterns — jumping-off points, if you will — see my Make Your Own Basics series. (It might be easiest to browse it on Pinterest.)
So that’s it: The only parameter for this is 3 hardworking garments, made between June 1 and August 31.
Use hashtag #summerofbasics to start sharing your plans on Instagram. And I highly recommend using this an opportunity to push yourself out of your comfort zone, while you’re surrounded by cheerleaders. My clothes-making life was completely changed by last year’s makes, and I know I’m far from alone in that.
SHOP NEWS: We’ve been adding small batches of the rereleased Toffee Field Bag back to the shop as they are completed. (Thank you so much for your enthusiasm!) So if you’ve run into a sold-out situation at any point, please check again! We’ve also got a few copies of the new Helga Isager book K (Knit) back in stock, as well as all of the colors of sashiko thread — among all the other lovelies (including the Porter Bin pictured up top)!
Happy weekend, everyone! See you next week—