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.
There are a lot of patterns on the market, to the point where a new sewist could be overwhelmed by the choice. I remember feeling exactly that, especially when looking at the big 4 – Burda, Butterick, Simplicity and Vogue. I just did not know where to start! Luckily I soon came across independent designers and I can safely say I have never made a dress from the big 4! Indies have all the content I need. With this in mind, I thought I would share with you my top 5 independent pattern makers. This post is not sponsored in anyway – its based purely on my experience and my thoughts.
This pattern making company was created and is run by Tilly Walnes. When I was first learning to sew I came across her book Love at First Stitch, which I credit with capturing my interest. It is a very good, beginner-friendly book that shows sewing can be funky and stylish and isnt just for the older generation. Her brand is a style setter (rather than follower) and her patterns the same. Tilly was on the second series of the GBSB and her brand has gone from strength to strength since then. She’s released quite a few patterns in recent years and I have some of them. The patterns are on very high quality paper and the instructions are plain and simple. She also blogs around new patterns so there is always additional help on her website.
Sew Over It are another big favourite of mine. Sew Over It is run by Lisa Comfort, who has two haberdashery stores in London. Her patterns are stylish and easy to follow; vintage inspired although Lisa will often adapt her patterns to bring them up to date. I have a lot of these patterns and swear by them. In fact, I am addicted. Lisa also has a vlog on Youtube, where she discusses her makes, fabric, shop related stuff, patterns, hacks, tutorials and more. Lots of really useful footage. I often go back and re-watch her older stuff to get fabric choice inspiration as I love her style.
I am quite new to Colette but I really like their range because they are stylish and fun but also do a bigger range of sizes (which means less grading needed). I have purchased a few of their patterns now (recently they had a big sale on) and find the instructions very clear (different instructions for different variations). Colette also run a blog, which has inspired my posts on the Wardrobe Architect and they have another site dedicated to sew-alongs for each of their released patterns. They are one of the big boys in the independents for a reason!
I discovered Doe and Deer a while ago and just adore their style. I have to be honest and say I havent made their patterns yet – mainly because I need to grade up and have only just learnt to do this. They do have a free pattern in their portfolio so I would encourage you to download this and see if you like what they offer.
I have warmed to BHL quite slowly but I am becoming a bigger fan by the day. I have produced garments from a couple of their designs and they were straight-forward and easy to follow. My first blouse was the Sarah blouse and I felt very accomplished after making the yoke as it was a new skill and they make it easy. So if you’re looking for a pattern company that will help you to develop this is one of them (although to be fair they all do that). BHL also have a circle skirt calculator on their website, which is fantastic for drafting your own full circle skirts.
What do you think of my choices? Are you a fan of any of these? Are you inspired to look into them? Is there a pattern maker you really like that is not on my list? If so please do share as I am always on the look out for new patterns!