Tag: wardrobe architect

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. 




In previous weeks on the Wardrobe Architect I posted about my past and my present defining my core style and beginning to form ideas about my style identity through a pinterest board. This week is all about reviewing what shapes make me feel happy and comfortable by filling in a grid where I grade from 1-10 based on my enjoyment of those shapes of garment.

I’ve talked previously about struggling with my shape, of being bigger than I would care to be and how I’ve allowed this to dictate my style. I have made some progress with this; since starting Wardrobe Architect I have began sewing (and wearing) garments for myself. I’ve had an internal mixed response to this – I’ve somewhat been in denial and this makes me face up to things that make me uncomfortable, but in doing so its began to help me in accepting myself more (something I’ve always struggled with, whatever my weight). It’s a work in progress but I am definitely experiencing a progress and shift, not only in my sense of style but also in my sense of self.

So, on to this week’s ‘homework’:

Previous to this week, I thought I didnt feel comfortable in many – if any – types of clothing, but seeing the results above show me this just isnt true. Sometimes we need to see something in black and white in order to believe it. Let’s do an analysis:


I like a mid-length, above the knee skirt, that is either a half full, full or A-line (how very vintage of me!). I quite like a high waist length (particularly on a pencil skirt) or a natural waistline, but not a low (I dont think this doesnt anything to enhance what I have).


Above applies to the skirt part of dresses too but I don’t like a high waistband on a dress (actually, thinking about this I beg to differ, there are a couple of dress designs with the waistband under the chest which I really like – I clearly forgot this when doing the quiz). I also quite like a longer length on a dress, though this is dependant on what it is, I would say.

Trousers (pants)

It looks like I love these somewhat fitted but with room to breathe (always nice!), and to either be full leg length of capri length. I quite like a high waist (or thick waistband) with trousers, I think this can be quite slimming.

Tops and Blouses

Again, I like these somewhat fitted, so that you can see the shape of my body (darts are a must, or princess seams) but loose enough that I am not feeling restricted. I like them fairly long, maybe tunic length, to cover my midriff and definately would not go for a cropped top!

Jackets & Blazers

I am not a huge fan of formal jackets and blazers but when I do wear them they would have to be similar to blouses and tops in that they are somewhat fitted but loose enough to breathe.


Ooh I love a cardi! (I must sound about 40 years older than I am!) I hate hate hate having the tops of my arms on show and so a cardi is a must with most of my outfits.I like them somewhat fitted but loose (I sense a theme here) and long enough to cover my tummy but not much longer than that.


I took the term ‘outwear’ to mean coats… and here too I like them fairly loose but with some shape, and to be long enough to cover my bum. Coats are the one garment that I quite like a low waist, I think this is because I can always bring it up by bagging the top part. If it was a formal coat I would like a natural waistline.


I’ll leave you with some pictures from my Wardrobe Architect Pinterest board that go with my analysis:





What do you think? Can you relate with anything I have written? Are you doing the Wardrobe Architect?

View my Wardrobe Architect pinterest board here

Find me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and The Foldline as ‘penguinandpear

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Hello everyone, I am back with my week two on the Wardrobe Architect. I hadn’t forgotten but sometimes life gets in the way. It probably wont be posted weekly but I will try to see it through to the end because already I am starting to see some clarity and shape in my style (which I never knew existed!).

So in week one I talked about what influences my style/clothing choices in my past and present, and I learned something about myself in doing this. Due to body issues I wasnt making clothes for myself but growing a collection of garments that while beautiful I would never fit into. Reading the comments on this series of blog posts on the Colette website it doesnt look like I am alone, far from it. Good to know!

The good news is that since I took part in week one, I have made four dresses for myself! I’ve even worn a couple of them to work! (A necessity when the other half breaks the washing machine and its taking forever to get fixed, hey ho!). I have also started a BurdaStyle course on grading, so in theory I will be able to adapt any pattern I want and will no longer be restricted by whether my measurements fit into a pattern.

So, on to week two!

When I first looked at week 2 (going back a few weeks now) I skim read and saw that I needed to start a pinterest board to collect images that represent my style. So I did this ahead of completing the task, without realising the whole point was to finish the task first! So, the aim this week was to uncover the styles that make me feel myself using words and images. There are a series of questions that ask you how you are feeling in a range of clothing situations which leads to building up a list of words that you associate with your dress style. You then have to narrow those words down to just five adjectives.


Here is my exercise:

When you are wearing your favorite clothing, how do you feel (e.g. confident, sexy, poised, powerful, etc)? Excited, girlie, tall, confident, achievable, happy

When you’re wearing something that is not quite right, how do you feel? What are the feelings you want to avoid about the clothes you wear? Awkward, fat, frumpy, unattractive. I want to avoid feeling like I don’t look good.

Who do you consider to be your style icons? What is it about them that appeals to you? There isnt any specific people; I am drawn to people who are happy, confident whom I can see pride beaming from. I like the 30’s 40’s and the 50’s eras for fashion. It comes across as positive, upbeat, flirty and fun!

What are some words that describe styles that you like in theory, but are not quite you? Sexy, rockabilly, vintage glam, classy, classic, swing dresses

Look over your answers from last week on history, philosophy, culture, community, activities, location, and body. List at least 15 words that you associate with your answers. Think about descriptive words, moods, and feelings you associate with these things: attractive, lady-like, frumpy, comfortable, snug, flaunty, bold, outrageous, daring, independent, spacial, vintage, happy, goal-orientated, restricted, sensible, realistic, honest, practical, afraid, considerate, emotive, overstated, hungry

Are there other words you would like to add to this list? What other words describe your core style? colourful, vintage, energetic, flaunty, considerate

Look over the answers to all of the questions above. If you had to narrow your list to only 3-5 words to describe you, which words would you choose? emotive, vintage, energetic, flaunty, considerate


The visual exercise asks us to collect 15-20 images that represent these five words. So I went back to my Pinterest board and looked at the pictures I’d collected and thought, wow! These pictures do represent these words. So even though I had not gone ahead and actively searched for representative pictures, it happened organically anyway!

You can view my pinterest board here

Here are a few of the pictures from the board:


Are you or have you been working through the Wardrobe Arcitect? How did you find it? Did it help shape your wardrobe? If you have a pinterest board feel free to link to it below in comments, likewise if you’ve bloged about Wardrobe Architect!

Why not add me on social media? You can find me on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest & The Fold Line as Penguinandpear

Thanks for reading!


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:


111orange leggingsHow 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!

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