Sunday, March 29, 2015


I love floral prints. A lot. 

This flared oversized skirt has been in my 'upcycle' pile for years! 

I bit the bullet this week & made a little top from it that I can pair with jeans.  I'm delighted with the result & can't wait to wear it:) 
I used a pattern I made myself.  It was for a dress I made recently, I shortened it & added a keyhole opening at the back of the neck. 

Friday, January 30, 2015

Wardrobe Architect Week 3: Exploring Shape

What is shape?  

In fashion designers terms it refers to 'style lines'.

- is the garment body-con or loose and flowing?
- is the neckline high, low or off the shoulder?
- does the waistline sit on the natural waistline, is it low rise or high-waisted?

Rating shapes for my wardrobe:


Yes                       No

high v                 low v
boatneck            u-shape
cowl                   turtleneck
square                halter
off-shoulder       strapless


Yes                      No

sleeveless          sleeveless
spagetti strap     spagetti strap
short                  bell shape
above elbow
3/4 length

I know straight away by looking at clothes if I will wear them or not.  But when I'm designing something I try to be a bit more openminded about the design.  Some style lines appear on both my Yes and No lists above... the reason for that being that I would or wouldn't wear them depending on what the garment was like.  For example, I would wear spagetti straps on a summer camisole but i'd be unlikely to wear them on a maxi dress.  (I'm a complicated spagetti strap wearer!!!)

To sum up my favourite shapes/style lines I would have to go with
- 50's inspired
- 60's inspired-
- covering the top of my arms
- knee length skirts
- necklines that are not too low
- cinched at the waistline (natural or high waisted)

Below are some photos I pinned to my style lines board to help with the exercise

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Week 5 & 6: My colour story & organising my colour palette

Colour is part of the language of clothing. 

'A colour palette creates an outward expression of moods, feelings and reactions that you want to convey' 

I agree with this statement by Colette Patterns.  Colour plays a huge part in my clothing choices.  I wear a black uniform to work so when I'm not working I like to wear as much colour as possible.  I'm not saying I look like a rainbow on my downtime... But I do like a pop of colour, especially deep pinks and coral reds.  However much of the colour in my wardrobe comes from patterns and prints... This is work for week 7 so now I'm going to try to focus on my favourite solid colours. 

My colour palette centres around what I consider to be my neutrals: 
Denim blues

And colours that feature heavily in my wardrobe: 

There are many colours missing from my my brainstorming above; there are colours that I don't wear at all: Browns, nudes and baby pinks are some. I feel like these colours do not suit my skin tone & make me look washed out.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Wardrobe Architect Week 4: Building Silhouettes

This week I explore silhouettes... Which ones I wear, which are my favourites and which ones I will be using to help plan my capsule wardrobe. 

I have come up with 8 basic silhouettes that I like, wear and inspired by: 
1. Top with cardigan and skinny jeans 
2. Loose top with boyfriend jeans
3. Shirt and high waisted jeans
4. Dress with flare in sleeve and skirt
5. 60s inspired shift dress
6. Blouse and pencil skirt 
7. Loose jumper and cigarette pants
8. Fitted dress with small flare in skirt

Below are two of my favourite silhouettes.  I wear these regularly and feel comfortable in them.  I believe they suit my body shape and I have many items of clothing that can make them up in various combinations. 

1. Camisole/tshirt/top with cardigan/blazer/shirt and skinny jeans/cigarette pants

2. Boxy shaped 60s inspired dress

There are clearly some silhouettes missing from my brainstorming, for example; anything bodycon, anything above the knee, anything very low cut or full length and flowing.  Personally I don't like or feel comfortable in those styles and I don't feel like they suit my body shape. This project is as much about embracing what you don't like as what you do like and I think that's a great feature of it. 

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Wardrobe Architect week 2: Defining my Core Style


- what are the styles that make me feel like me? 

An a-line dress with tights and boots

Skinny jeans with a top and cardigan

A blouse and pencil skirt 

- how do I feel when I wear my favorite styles? 

I feel comfortable and elegant when I wear my favorite styles. I know they suit and I they make me feel confident in my personal style. 

There are words I don't particularly like; cute is one of them.... But I suppose having the same haircut I had when I was a child doesn't help the situation! 

-Who are my style icons? 

I find it difficult to say that I admire the style of someone whom I believe is dressed by a stylist!  In this way I do not necessarily admire celebritity style. 
However there are some ladies in the industry I cannot ignore as I love the risks they take with their style: 
Marioslava Duma and Amber Valetta are two of these women. 
I believe that true style icons are of a bygone era - Marilyn Monroe, Audrey Hepburn and Twiggy make an impact for me. 

- what words describe my core style? 

Clean lines

There are many words I could use to describe my core style.  I chose the following 5: 

Clean lines
Well made

Wardrobe architect week 1: Making Style more personal

-what is individuality? 
- how am I different and how does this reflect in my style identity? 

This weeks questions centre around defining my personal style. Lots of factors influence our style; historic events, family values, culture, location and our bodies are a few. 

I had a creative influence in my family from a very early age... My mother.  In the early 80s she was what you would call today a 'stay at home mum' or as she likes to put it ' a domestic engineer'!! 

She was (and still is) most things to my siblings and I; cook, cleaner, disciplinarian, tutor and nurse and nurturer.  I believed there was nothing she could not do.  ( I kinda still believe it 😋) 

My mother influenced my personal style in ways I did not realise.  She taught me how to sew using her industrial strength Singer which sounded like a tractor in the kitchen!  She showed me how to knit and I was the girl knitting a jumper for school when everyone else was knitting blanket squares.  

I was raised in a culture of 'make, do & mend' which is something I still practise. We didn't throw our clothes away when they were torn or out of style, we fixed them or passed them on to other family members to be loved again. 
I believe this has been a large influence on my dislike in general for 'fast-fashion' & my love of finding a bargain in a charity shop 😆

Other factors that influence my style are: 
Location: Ireland is definitely a place for layers, and I much prefer autumn clothing to summer clothing. 
Body: by the age of 33 I am comfortable in my own skin. I know which styles suit me & which ones don't. I know that I'm short and have hips. I know that I am a size 10 on top and a size 12 on the bottom 😜  and I love that I know that, because I can make clothes that suit me, with fabrics that I like, and I know that nobody will have them except me ❤️✂️

Below: Mam will kill me for this but here's a pic of us 9 years ago when I made her a cute summer blouse! 

2015 Wardrobe Architect Challenge

In 2014 Colette Patterns introduced the 'Wardrobe Architect'... 'A 14 week blog series exploring personal style and practical ideas for creating a more meaningful wardrobe' 

This year I have decided to take the 2015 Wardrobe Architect Challenge.  Taking guidance from the 2014 series I plan to create a 12-piece capsule pattern collection and use the patterns to create some lovely additions to my wardrobe. 

In keeping with my usual 'reduce reuse recycle' theme I will try to use fabric from my stash as much as possible.

I'm excited for this challenge and have 3 of the patterns finished already!!

Stay tuned to follow my progress..... 

Here's to a creative and inspired 2015 ❤️