This post has been a while in the making, but I am pleased to say it is finally here. Week 4 of the Wardrobe Architect has tasked me with creating silohettes by putting together outfits. I think I took so long to do this post because I couldnt think of anything worse than trawlling through clothes shops for RTW that I would never actually buy! However, once I got into scouring the internet, it became strangely addictive. I was strict and allowed myself to create only 3 outfits:
This is an evening type outfit that I like. I would only wear black in the evening, or to work, but I think it can look really nice. I chose this dress because it is comfortable and smart at the same time. I like the full skirt and have recently made some similar Monetas by Colette (albeit without the peplum ruffle). I also like the dress gives a sense of being tall because it is long and this, along with the black, would be slimming. I chose these shoes because they have wedges – I am not great with heels (no balance) but you would have had to have had far too many shandies to fall from these!
I didn’t know I would like something like this but once I saw it I knew it had to be in my list. A lovely summer dress to wear to the beach (I live near the beach), which would work during the day or later in the evening (thanks to the border around the top). I like the understated effort of this dress, and whats more probably wouldnt need ironing! I chose flip flops to go with it because you cant get more comfy than this type of shoe. The butterfly effect balances out the no-fuss dress nicely, I think.
This is a daytime dressy outfit in my book, although I could wear the skirt and top to work too. I love a nice pussy bow blouse (I recently made one from a pattern that came free with a magazine) and I am pretty big on bows too. The colour of the skirt is lovely, so calming, and similar to the background on my website. Although a necklace isnt necessary with this outfit, and I am not a big fan of wearing jewellery at all, when I saw this necklace I really liked it. I think the shoes are so pretty – I am not 100% convinced they go with this outfit but they probably would if I was going to wear it all (I am not – the shoes are over £200!!).
It’s quite nice to see my developing style ‘written down’ so to speak. Since starting Wardrobe architect I have been trying to make more of my own clothes, despite not feeling comfortable in my own skin, and I am having mixed results. However, I am about to make a dress for myself for a special occasion from no pattern. I am thinking full circle skirt and princess seam top sewn together into a dress, but we will see how it goes.
You can view my previous Wardrobe Architect posts here:
Wardrobe Architect: Week 1
Wardrobe Architect: Week 2
Wardrobe Architect: Week 3
Look out for my next post on Wardrobe Architect – this one will be all about colour. This should be interesting for reasons that will be disclosed next time…
Have you done this week’s task? If so leave a comment with a link so I can go and have a read on your post.
I realise I am a bit late to the Wardrobe Architect party but after seeing it mentioned on Vintage on Tap I thought it is definately something I should investigate. So, essentially Collette HQ decided in 2014 to run a series on their blog to enable followers to look into their wardrobe and restructure it into something more functional and aesthetically pleasing. This is something I desperately need assistance with and so I have decided to give it a go.
The first week asks us to look at various aspects of our lives (history, culture etc) to look for influences in our current style. It was very interesting to do because it made me think of where my style sits, why and where I want it to be. It was quite a raw conversation I had with myself and is making me address some thought processes and the direction my sewing is going in.
Here are my answers:
How has your personal history informed the way you dress? When did your tastes crystalize? Have they changed over the years, and why?
As a child I did not like dresses but as I have gotten older I have begun to like that fashion sense. I’m not sure why I didnt like it but I have had a turnaround because I feel more feminine. As a teenager I liked to have colourful clothes; I owned a pair of bright orange ski pants. I have never been one to be concerned with others’ opinions; at times I felt like I should be. I’ve enjoyed comfortable clothes from a young age & this aspect of my taste has not changed.
How does your philosophy, spirituality, or religion affect your aesthetics and buying habits? Or, what aspects of those things would you like to see reflected?
I havent felt like religion or spirituality have dictated or influenced my style choices, although perhaps those aspects in society have played a part as I have been at times quite conservative.
How has your cultural background shaped the way you look? How did the aesthetics and values you grew up with affect your tastes as you got older?
In my culture it is seen that being slim is valued even above health. As a result of this I have often felt extreme pressure (once losing 100lbs in 7 months). My fashion preferences are sometimes dictated by what looks good on slim people when I need to get away from this. This could be gathered skirts or big dresses, which would make me look bigger in my eyes.
How are you influenced by the people around you, including friends, family, and other communities you’re involved in?
I think I am more influenced by what ‘I’ think than what others do (I am not sure how true this really is!). However I am by no means immune to the dazzle of fashion trends. While I don’t follow them specifically, I cant help but be influenced through popular media. Its more for my imaginary wish-list for when I get my perfect body! I am also influenced by work and social appropriateness and what ‘I’ feel is appropriate for me.
How do your day to day activities influence your choices?
I work full time in an office and suffer from chronic illness so comfort is priority for me. Currently I try to find the comfiest clothes in the supermarket that are most flattering to my shape (basically sacks) that is affordable. I spent much more money on fabric for clothes I make for other people than I do myself!
Does the place you live inform the way you dress? How does climate factor in?
I live in the south of England where nice weather is pretty limited. Cardi’s and leggings are a staple of the winter months. Additionally where I live is an elderly community in the main and so there are restrictions around that but I have no intention of being mutton dressed as lamb so this suits me somewhat.
In what ways does body image affect your choices in clothing? What clothes make you feel good about the body you live in? What clothes make you feel uncomfortable or alienated from your body?
In my head I am skinnier than in my mirror and this has over time resulted in disastrous clothing and pattern decisions! With patterns, I then make them in a ‘normal size’ for no one in particular so I can pat myself on the back for my developing dressmaking skills… but then somewhere deep it makes me feel bad because I cant fit into anything I make.
One thing I noticed reading the comments on the collettehq page is that I am not alone in my thinking. There were lots of comments around different areas of body image and fashion and most if not all were self restricting in their own way. That is why I think this process is such a positive thing for the sewing community.
What are your thoughts? Have you been through similar to me? Do you disagree? Could your wardrobe also do with re-structuring? Let me know in the comments.
I will be hosting a week of wardrobearchitect on my instagram account, make sure you look me up @penguinandpear to keep up to date.
Until next time (which will be a review of swedish sewing paper…)… keep sewing!