Wardrobe Architect (weeks 7 & 8)

More Wardrobe Architect talk today! (See, I haven’t forgotten, even though I am atrociously far behind…)

The Wardrobe Architect

Week 7 was all about prints and patterns vs. solid colors, and figuring out which types of prints we like wearing.



I’d say that my favorite and most-worn garments (me-made and otherwise) are about half prints and half solids. I don’t do a lot of print mixing — I tend to pair printed tops with solid bottoms or vice versa, or just go for all solid colors. This made me realize that I could stand to make/acquire more solid-colored blouses and t-shirts for wearing with patterned skirts.



In terms of types of prints, I tend to go for organic-looking patterns, florals, and novelty prints. I don’t really care for strong geometric prints on me, except for stripes. Oh, and plaids are really nice for button-up shirts! In this post I’ve included a sampling of prints from my favorite garments and fabric pieces from my stash. I think lately I’ve actually done very well at steering clear of prints that I love the look of on a bolt of fabric, but don’t actually like to wear.



Week 8 was all about hair, makeup, and other beauty products and routines. This is an area of personal style I’d like to explore more! I’ve pretty much always had long hair. I like it, but I’d be interested try short hair to see what it’s like.

I’ve only just started dipping my toes into the world of makeup–somehow I missed the memo on this in high school and college. (I’ve found lurking in r/makeupaddicts to be very educational in this regard, by the way.) I suppose my core, essential makeup products at this point are foundation; black mascara; neutral, brown-ish eye shadows; and pinkish lip colors. The amount of makeup I put on really depends on the day. I actually enjoy doing a full face with foundation and everything, but realistically I don’t bother most of the time. (I still need to acquire some kind of really light foundation/bb cream/tinted moisturizer for days when real foundation seems like too much… Recommendations?) As with clothing, if something takes a huge amount of effort to put on or wear, I can’t be bothered most of the time. And that’s fine with me. :)


Wardrobe Architect (weeks 5 & 6)

I bet you thought I’d forgotten about the Wardrobe Architect project, huh? Okay, you probably didn’t–I don’t think anyone except me thinks about my blog enough to notice that I’ve fallen behind, which in this case is convenient! (If you want to read my previous Wardrobe Architect posts, you can do that here.)

The Wardrobe Architect

Weeks 5 & 6 were all about color. The exercise for week 5 was simply to create a palette of colors that you like and feel good wearing.

This was actually a really useful exercise for me because it forced me to think critically about what colors I think look good on me (as opposed to just what colors I like), something I admit I had never put a lot of thought into before. I found this series of posts (part 1, part 2, part 3) from the blog Into Mind (which I recommend, by the way) really helpful and interesting while I was thinking about this. Apparently, according to the “color seasons” idea, I am a “warm autumn,” or possibly a “warm spring.” Now, I don’t subscribe to the idea that one should feel obligated to cling slavishly to the colors one is “supposed” wear, but figuring out which type you are is an interesting starting place for figuring out which colors you might like to wear.

Figuring out which “type” I am was pretty illuminating for me, actually. I had never really considered before that I tend to look best in warm colors, but now that I have thought about it, I can see it’s totally true. My favorite garments are warm colors, and I can even think of specific cool-toned garments that I don’t wear very often because I don’t think the colors flatter me.

The exercise for week 6 was to organize your color palette into three categories: neutrals (black, cream, etc.), near neutrals (colors you’re comfortable wearing as neutrals, that go with almost anything), and statement colors. So, without further ado, here is mine:


This is a combination of colors I already wear and like, and colors that I’d like to wear more often. I really enjoyed putting it together, and it’s definitely been useful to think about while fabric shopping.

Up next in Wardrobe Architect: prints vs. solids! Also, I just finished a Scout Tee today (and I love it!), so you’ll be seeing that up here as soon as I have a chance to photograph it. :)

#WardrobeArchitect (weeks 3 & 4)

More Wardrobe Architect talk today! Week 3 was devoted to thinking about the shapes of individual garments, and week 4 was all about outfit silhouettes.

The Wardrobe Architect

In week 3 we filled out a questionnaire to get us thinking about which garment shapes we gravitate towards. (Mini, midi, or maxi skirts? Full, A-line, or fitted?) Then, for week four, we used those preferences to come up with outfit silhouettes that fit those preferences. In this case “silhouette” means a formula for an outfit: skinny jeans, a button up shirt, and boots, for instance (which just happens to be one of my go-to silhouettes).

Silhouette 1

Coming up with a collection of the silhouettes you tend to use over and over again can help you zero in on the kinds of garments you’re likely to get a lot of use from, and decide how to spend your precious sewing time! I came up with nine silhouettes that I wear often. I’ll only post a few of them here, but you can check out the rest on Polyvore if you’re interested. (Pay no attention to the colors or patterns of the clothes in these–the point was to focus on shape!)

Silhouette 3

This was actually quite a useful exercise for me. It confirmed that I should really make myself some Archer button-up shirts, if nothing else! More loose, casual tops would be good too (Scout tee-shirts, perhaps?!). And more Renfrews, and maybe a few more versions of my self-drafted batwing top pattern…

Silhouette 5

That’s all for now. The button-up shirt for The Boyfriend is coming along! Hopefully I’ll have a post about that up here soon. :)

#WardrobeArchitect (Weeks 1 & 2)

I have no finished garment to show you today. (Sorry–I’m working on it! Next up is another button-down shirt for The Boyfriend.) Instead, I have something a bit different!

The Wardrobe Architect

I’m following along with the Wardrobe Architect project, led by Sarai over at the Coletterie blog. (Here is the very first post in the series, explaining what the project is all about. You can check out all the posts about the project so far here.)

The point of this project is to think critically about what we wear and why we wear it, so as to be able to sew (and buy) garments that we will actually use and be happy to wear, rather than garments that end up perpetually hanging in the back of the closet, unworn and unloved. What kinds of clothes make us feel good about ourselves or our bodies, and why? What kinds of clothes make us feel uncomfortable? What garments do we like in theory (or on other people), but never seem to actually wear? What shaped these preferences? How does one define a core personal style, or aesthetic?

Sarai has posted some great prompts and worksheets to help us get started thinking about these things (one prompt per week is the plan). The last item on the worksheet for week two was to select five words that define your personal style, and then to collect 15-20 images that reflect those words. My words were casual, modern, subdued-yet-cheerful, practical, and simple. (I know I kind of cheated on the middle one, just roll with it.) I collected my images on a Pinterest board–feel free to peruse it, if you so desire.

I’m not going to share the rest of my answers to the worksheet questions here (too long, too boring, too personal), but here are a few of the more useful thoughts that came to me as I was filling them out:

I want my clothes to help me look like a competent adult. For whatever reason, when people first meet me (and have nothing but my appearance to go on), they often assume I’m several years younger than I actually am. While this isn’t the end of the world (people are forever telling me I’ll be grateful for it eventually!), I would like my appearance to better reflect the reality of the situation.

I’d like to look “effortlessly put-together.” I want it to look like I put some thought into what I’m wearing, but not like I obsessed about it. Plus, although I like looking good as much as the next person, I know that I’m way more likely to wear things that are “easy to wear.” If it requires a lot of maintenance, special undergarments, a special hair-do, impractical shoes, or what-have-you, it probably won’t be on heavy rotation in my everyday wardrobe.

Unique details are good; super quirky and weird usually isn’t (for me, right now). When I was younger I was way more into looking purposefully quirky/weird, and steadfastly not following trends. These days, I don’t mind fitting in a little bit more.

Although I like vintage looks on other people, I (mostly) don’t feel comfortable sporting that look myself. Wearing things that are so far outside my usual “skinny jeans and a nice top” uniform in my everyday life usually just makes me feel self-conscious and uncomfortable. (For special occasions, though, all bets are off.)

I need my everyday clothes to be comfortable and practical. If I can’t comfortably walk moderate distances, bend over, and sit cross-legged on the ground in it, then I probably won’t wear it super often. (Again, though, this does not apply to special occasions!)

Clean lines and simple designs tend to appeal to me. I should really try to embrace this more in the garments I sew.

I feel the most attractive and comfortable in subdued-but-cheerful colors. No neons, not all black. Colors like cranberry red, peacock blue, olive green, burnt orange, dusty pink, dark lavender, and mustard yellow. (I guess most of these are “autumn” colors.) I think they look good on me, too. My favorite garments in my closet at the moment are almost all in this color pallet. I’m also kind of getting into gray as a neutral these days–it’s less harsh than black.

That’s it for today. I recommend playing along, if you’re interested in thinking a little bit more deeply than usual about your fashion preferences and choices. But even if you aren’t, go and read Sarai’s posts and skim the comments–lots of great inspiration and food for thought!

P.S. If you made it all the way through that wall of text, thanks for reading. :)