A big thanks to Gillian of Crafting a Rainbow for coming up with and hosting this great roundup series. I’ve been enjoying reading these posts for a while now and I’m happy to join in this year.
Here’s my purely subjective list. It has been influenced by lots of factors, from the weather to weight fluctuations.
Rather than pick out five garments, I’ve picked out five categories that cover both my most worn and liked garments and what I’ve been learning from these about my wardrobe gaps.
Here we go:
#1 All my Rooibos dresses so far
I would not have predicted that Rooibos would be my pattern of the year when I finished that first dress. But it quickly became my go-to warm weather dress for those occasions when I wanted to feel somewhat dressed up but with serious pockets. It turned out that I often want to feel that way. So I made a second dress, and when the temperatures dropped, a third, which taught me how great the simplified pattern works as a layering piece.
Really, I think that for me simplifying the design was the key. The original neckline, though cute, makes it look like more of a one-off than it needs to be. It would work well as a variation, with a no-frills variation as an alternative added to the pattern.
I have some thoughts on the criticism of how Colette Patterns are drafted but I’d rather save it for later. I did two muslins for Rooibos and I feel that those were enough for me to figure out the right fit for me. I do think that the bust sizing runs smaller than usual for this particular pattern, and so that’s an issue that should at least be clarified if not resolved with a pattern update. But, overall, I can say that I do recommend it. And I think I might make it again.
#2 Laurel in navy crepe
The best fabric pairing I’ve had with this pattern so far. I wear this dress a lot — more than the other dress versions I’ve sewn up because this color and this fabric have proven the most versatile.
I want to keep working with this pattern. I’ve had some luck (and a lot of fun) trying out different hacks on the blouse version. I’m thinking of hacking the dress to get something similar to this Burda pattern. I will be sticking with the Laurel as the basis (rather than altering the Burda bodice) because it’s drafted both for my cup size and for a broad back.
#3 Skirts and tops for work
top row, from the left:  Burda deep pleat skirt (post), Thread Theory Camas blouse and mini skirt (blogged here and here);  Burda deep pleat skirt paired with a Plantain/Tonic tee (post)
bottom row, from the left:  Astoria sweater (blogged here and here);  Colette Patterns Beignet skirt with Plantain/tonic tee and me-made cardigan (blogged here and here);  Simplicity 1070 knit pencil skirt (post)
Some lessons learned from trying to make my work wardrobe less accidental:
- I like to keep my work and non-work wardrobes slightly separate
- I really like wearing skirts, even when they don’t have pockets
- overall, a skirt and a top (shirt, especially) gets more wear than dresses (these somehow feel more ‘private’?); significant exception: the Laurel dress above
- I obviously still need to tackle making shirts and pants… and definitely with more dedication
# 4 Finlayson
A very important unselfish sewing project. I made two, and I think I will make more. And that clever collar might travel on to other sewing projects. Maybe this category will eventually become Thread Theory patterns? Time will tell. I am enjoying sewing those and have a few more of their designs on my forever expanding to-sew list.
# 5 Jammies and loungewear
In short, need more, and need to go beyond sleepwear to some solutions for the laziest of weekends spent at home. Ideas welcome.
That’s my Top 5. Coming soon, everyone’s favorite roundup: the misses.