Thursday 28 August 2014

OWOP Guest Post from House of Pinheiro

The third and final guest blogger sharing her tips on style for One Week, One Pattern is Rachel from House of Pinheiro. Rachel is an excellent seamstress/teacher, super organiser of sewing blogger meet-ups and a wonderful friend to boot. She ALWAYS looks fab, whatever she's wearing and I've learnt a lot from her over the years. I'm thrilled that she's sharing her thoughts on personal style with us today...

Ola Handmade Jane readers, I’m Rachel from House of Pinheiro and I'm so excited to be joining the OWOP series of guest write ups on style. 
Defining the meaning of the word ‘style’ is never easy, there are too many variants and like every ‘rule book’, there are some meant to be broken. 

More than what one wears or how one wears it, style is something that cannot be faked. A fusion between individual personally and vision. What matters is that it isn't an exact formula. 

Style is what works for each individual. If it works for you, it shows in confidence and that’s for me the biggest successful style indicator. Defining one style can be hard. We get bombarded by enticing images, fashion trends and well, our own genetics and lifestyle throw us a curve ball. 

The important thing is to embrace whatever makes you jump of excitement. Sewing can lead to a very interesting journey in search of one personal style.  Today I’m sharing a snapshot of mine.

You know, the kind of outfit that people immediately refer when they think of you. That can be either defined by labels, like ‘breton’: stripy boatneck and capris or by one item of clothing: a trench coat, a scarf etc…  For some people their style path is very clear, for others it requires a little more thinking.

That’s because we are not ‘one’ piece. We have phases, we evolve, change our view of the world with every new experience. However if we look closely in your closet, there are a few clues of a signature style: A common theme like ‘comfortable’, 'clean lines', a predominant colour, predominant hem height, type of print, predominant shape.

My signature is tailoring. A wardrobe consisting of fitted clothes: Blazers, sheath dresses, slim fitting trousers, knit dresses. I also have a favouritism for bold prints & colour.

I have been quite experimental sewing different shapes and patterns, also taking into consideration what was needed in my wardrobe.

Unlike when you try RTW clothes from a shop dressing room where you can immediately decide if something is or not "you", sewing for your style requires a little bit of commitment and imagination. Matching the right fabric to the right pattern becomes more selective as times goes by. Past mistakes are taken into account both on shapes and prints.
Do you have any repeat ‘offenders’, a TNT pattern that you make over and over… comfort sewing? Or do you sew for a 'dream' wardrobe that’s kept in the closet most of the time waiting for the right time? Any of those choices match with your lifestyle?

My lifestyle off-duty uniform (i.e what I dress without thinking, almost always a variation of the same silhouette with different pieces) is consistent of slim trousers, mainly jeans worn with a fitted tee or shirt, statement coat or blazer, a scarf or long necklaces, accessorised with different size bags, hats and sunglasses. When corporate I do fitted skirts, blazers and dresses, rarely trousers

My comfort sewing is to sew knit dresses, generally with long sleeves, because I love layering clothes in the winter.

I often have to manage the desire to sew my lifestyle uniform, my comfort sewing projects and the latest challenge ( ie new pattern, new technique etc) and that keeps sewing fun for me. I keep skipping from one area to another, and most times without realising, reinforcing my personal style by my choices of fabrics and silhouettes.
With a very eclectic wardrobe trying to pick odd pieces is a challenge.  Knowing what you are not is generally a great start. I'm not 'vintage' or "street urban". This dress has the fit and colour I like but the fabric print & texture, hem height didn't work because It creates a vintage look which I don't like.

Being tall I can take advantage of bolder styles, proportions (oversize- mini) and prints. Playing individual characteristics can help refine your style choices. Look at areas like, body shape, colour of your hair, nice eyes, legs etc. Complementary colours to your features, silhouettes that highlight your best assets helps when defining your style. Think about your whole package. What do you want to tell the world? 
Throw out every style rule you read that doesn't work for you and trust your instincts. Does it feel right? Does it feel like 'me'? The fun thing about sewing is that YOU are in control! Sew happy!

xoxo, Rachel

You can read more over at House of Pinheiro.

Aw thank you so much for a wonderful post Rachel. What you write rings so true, I found myself nodding along the whole time I was reading it! Sewing IS all about finding your personal style and  deciding what look works best for YOU!

Don't forget to catch up with the two previous OWOP guest posts by Winnie at Scruffy Badger Time here (styling with scarves) and Lizzy at Sew Busy Lizzy here (styling with different accessories). It's been an absolute privilege having three such accomplished stitchers share their thoughts on style for OWOP. I've definitely learnt a lot and picked up some awesome tips - I hope you have too. Massive thanks once again to Winnie, Lizzy and Rachel.

Next week sees the start of a series of fab giveaways, gearing up for the start of One Week, One Pattern itself on Saturday 6th September. Can't wait! x

Tuesday 26 August 2014

Mystery fabric

Here's a conundrum for a fine summer's day - does anybody know what this is?

It's a roll containing 20 patterned fabric squares which my father-in-law gave me. I think he originally picked it up in an antique shop. Forgive my ignorance, but I have no idea if the printed characters are Chinese or Japanese - can anybody enlighten me please?!

The end of the roll has a small lime green panel with writing on it…

…then as it unrolls, there are 20 different fabric designs, each section approximately 14" x 11'.

These panels are numbered like so:

I've shown my favourite designs below, in addition to these, there are also several plum/purple based designs.

The Japanese fabric shop Fabric Tales carries a very similar design to the last pattern in its 'Traditional Patterns' section. It's called Asanoha or hemp leaf.  This makes me think that the fabric roll may be Japanese, but I could be completely wrong.  My father-in-law's guess is that it was a sample roll used to sell new fabric designs, hence the numbering and the small, sample sizes of each design. I think he could be right.

The fabric type feels incredibly soft and drapey, like some sort of silk crepe. I did initially toy with the idea of using some of the sections as secret pockets or facings, but when push came to shove, I just couldn't bear to cut into the roll. All I know for certain is that the designs are absolutely exquisite. It's a joy to unroll it and look at the beautiful colours and designs.

If anybody has the slightest inkling as to what this is, or even how old it might be, I'd love to hear! x

Thursday 21 August 2014

OWOP Guest Post from Sew Busy Lizzy

This is the second guest post written especially for One Week, One Pattern. Today's treat (and believe me it IS a treat!) is written by uber-cool Aussie - Lizzy - from Sew Busy Lizzy. I had the pleasure of meeting Lizzy briefly last year when she visited London and it's still one of my biggest regrets that I didn't get to have more than a passing conversation with her. I've followed and admired her blog for a few years now and always enjoy seeing the very personal, stylish spin she gives to the most basic sewing patterns. I'm also a big fan of her writing style and it was this recent post in particular that galvanised me into pleading with her to pen a few words for OWOP. To my delight she agreed ...

I used to be one of those people who wore either...
  • a dress...
  • jeans and a tshirt...
  • trousers and a button-up shirt...

...and that was about it. I felt awkward in accessories. About the only things I owned was a string of pearls (beautiful 'real' ones, a wedding gift from my husband), my engagement/wedding/eternity ring set and an antique emerald ring. That was the extent of my accessory wardrobe. I even hated wearing belts. These days I collect accessories like some people collect stamps or coins. You can never have too many scarves, necklaces, earrings, bangles, stockings – simple little touches which can transform an outfit. I guess that sounds tremendously indulgent - however I've found having a range of accessories means that I need less clothes... simply because I can transform my existing pieces into new looks. When I'm feeling weary of my wardrobe I just think about how else I could wear a piece of clothing and dive into my jewellery, belt, shoe, scarf or jacket piles and see how I can 'shake things up'. I pick things up in sales, bargain bins, holiday trips, markets, charity shops - all sorts of places. They are rarely expensive - yet prove to be some of my best wardrobe investments. 

I think it’s great to sew yourself sensational clothes. I think it’s even better to learn to wear them well. I rarely sew or purchase anything without thinking about the complete overall look. I see a fabric or a garment and picture the shoes, the belt, the bag and so on. It’s not just a piece of clothing, it’s a package deal. I know plenty of people who have amazing clothes. Expensive, well cut, designer clothes. That doesn’t always make them stylish or interesting - just well groomed in some cases. ‘Wearing the clothes’ rather than letting them wear you is the key I think. I am often questioned on the clothes I’m wearing – often by strangers. I’ve got a very diverse mix of designer, homemade, vintage and charity shop pieces – I tend to wear them mashed up - and with a variety of accessories. I often select one statement item and then build the rest of the outfit around it. You can get ‘too busy’ in a visual sense. It’s important to figure out what the key element is and make sure it sings, rather than competes with everything else you are wearing. Any opera singer will tell you – there can be only one diva! Here it is clearly the vivid yellow skirt (Sewaholic Gabriola) but the denim vest and some simple beads tone it down and bring the outfit together. 

Sewaholic Gabriola Maxi Skirt
A really lovely casual skirt. I think I could wear this anywhere.

Here are some of my favourite accessories…


Scarves are a great all year round accessory. Growing up in a climate which doesn't really require a winter-weight coat, scarves did take me awhile to 'get'. It was a trip to England many years ago when I realised how to wear scarves and hats well - over there they are essential to ward off those CHILLY winds!! Back here they do help in winter but they are also a simple way to jazz up a plain outfit. I tend to favour block-coloured clothes so I tend to favour multicoloured scarves. I like how you can use them to add more texture and interest to an outfit. I do have some plain scarves and I tend to wear them with patterned clothing, a simple scarf can 'calm down' a crazy pattern or create a focal point. I also love crochet lace scarves. 
in this case the scarf completely transformed the jacket.
In this case, the scarf completely transformed the jacket

However scarves don't have to just be 'winter wear'. I love to wear a light-weight scarf with a t-shirt and jeans, or simple dresses. I remember seeing a friend and thinking 'wow she always looks so 'together'' and I realised the major difference between our appearance was I rarely saw her without a scarf draped around her neck or a lovely boho necklace. I realised this while we were sitting watching our kids play in the park - so it's not like it was a glamour event. However she always looked 'everyday' fabulous and I adored it. 

Sewaholic Hollyburn with a white tank and a scarf
Sewaholic Hollyburn with a white tank and a scarf

While I adore blue and own lots of blue clothing, I tend to steer away from wearing blue accessories. Rather I choose colours that highlight or tone with my blue wardrobe. Then again I do often slide back into my blue obsession as you can see above! 

Of all the items in my accessory wardrobe necklaces probably were the hardest to get the hang of. Yes I know you just hang them around your neck but they always felt obvious and just weird. 

neutral necklaces
Some of my favourites!

Then I discovered necklaces with wooden beads or natural earthy tones. For some reason these felt less obvious on me. So I guess the key is to find something that works with much of our wardrobe and branch out from there. I now have several chunky colourful necklaces and lots of silver, boho necklaces. 

Sewaholic Hollyburn
Sewaholic Hollyburn with a red striped tee and a blue glass beads

I do have preferences. I don't like chunky beads around my neck. I prefer necklaces to hang around my clavicles/base of my throat. Anything too large just looks comical on me - however I have friends that can wear massive statement necklaces and look beyond fabulous. Sometimes you just don't need anything at all - as the clothes are enough by themselves. 

Sewaholic Hollyburn with a floral shirt
Sewaholic Hollyburn with a floral shirt. 
No accessories needed as the shirt is busy enough.

Now I know technically jackets are a piece of clothing. I suffer from a major jacket fetish and I think this is because I like to use them to an outfit up or down, or totally transform an outfit. Think about jeans/white shirt with a corporate fitted black jacket... and jeans/white shirt with a khaki utility jacket... and you see what I mean. During the colder months I tend to have two jackets in circular every day. I have the jacket I wear from the car into the office with a scarf. Then I have the soft/warm jacket I wear around the office... and sometimes another casual jacket if I am doing 'mum' duties after work or catching up with friends.... plus I have a corporate jacket on 'stand by' for meetings... I love that with the shrug of my shoulders I can change a work outfit from corporate to casual to after-work drinks, courtesy of a good jacket choice. I have five core jackets in my wardrobe (and many variations on the theme!) and yes at the moment they are RTW - they are in good condition and I see no point in sewing something which doesn't need replacing.

  • Trench coat - these are never out of fashion for good reason. I have a classic one and a vivid blue one.
  • Denim jacket - these last forever and the older the better! Mine was a vintage find for the princely sum of $5. I also have a denim vest which I like to put over tank tops in summer for more coverage.
  • Black bomber jacket - I adore bombers - always have. I wear them casually and with my corporate clothes.
  • Khaki utility jacket - I consider khaki one of the great neutrals of the wardrobe world. A sorely unrated colour and a utility jacket is just the most perfectly casual and practical of all jackets.
  • Black fitted corporate jacket. I find you can transform pretty much anything with an amazing black jacket. I love them for work functions... I feel much more comfortable and confident wearing a stylish jacket with a cocktail dress when I'm being 'work me'.
I'm sure there are other jackets that you might find essential - it all depends on your climate and lifestyle. These ones are in regular rotation in my life and each one can transform an outfit, taking me from 'mum duties', to work, socialising and more. Rather than getting changed for every social event during a day, I often just change my jacket. Now I could go on forever about accessories - these three are just my favourites and the ones that I am most comfortable with. Who knows in 2015 I could have a new accessory obsession! 

Watch people, when you see a fabulous woman... study what she is wearing. She might have a killer necklace, or stunning shoes, a patterned scarf that just pulls her outfit together. It's really that simple sometimes. 

Never fiddle. There is nothing worse than watching someone fidget with a scarf, necklace or endlessly tug at a jacket. Be comfortable in your own skin. 

Signature pieces - something that says something about you. At the moment it's unusual to see me without my fine silver chain & key around my neck. I leave it on regardless of what I wear with it. It has significant personal meaning to me. 

Use tools such as Pinterest and Polyvore - these are great for inspiration, messing around with combinations or checking out other people's ideas. I've also found them a very handy tool to define and understand my own style... I clearly have a great love of denim, khaki, boots and draped clothing at the moment! 

Be brave. I was having lunch with some sewing people recently and we were discussing makes. Someone said 'oh I won't have anywhere to wear that' and I said 'I used to think that - then I realised that it's about confidence. I've seen some extravagantly dressed women walk into a theatre foyer - and everyone just goes WOW. I agree that many people would be thinking 'that's over the top' or 'I could never wear that' or some even make snide remarks... but more often people are secretly envious. Everyone does want to wear it - she just had a courage'. Be brave - embrace your inner accessory goddess and let her shine!

I loved reading your tips and advice on accessories Lizzy, thank you so much! If you're undecided about using scarves, necklaces and jackets for OWOP, I hope this guest post has answered a few questions for you. You can also read Winnie's OWOP post on styling with scarves here. x

Monday 18 August 2014

A toned down bow blouse

I recently had a couple of precious mornings all to myself i.e. no children to entertain. This was my last chance for garment sewing until September, so I chose what I was going to make carefully. I wanted an easy top for my holiday, it had to have minimal fastenings (ideally no zips or buttons), a fitted shape and be made in a lightweight fabric for wearing at the beach.

I trawled through my pattern collection looking for inspiration, before finally settling for Simplicity 2154 - a sixties style bow blouse which I first made here.  Now, you may think something Miss Moneypenny would have in her wardrobe would be highly unsuitable for holiday wear, but stay with me. As a casual holiday top, there's a lot to be said against using this pattern: it's quite high necked, it looks formal, it has a ginormous bow and if you're not careful, you could end up looking a bit too 'Dog Toby'. Looking like 'Dog Toby' is an expression my mum and I use if something looks a bit too frilly and ridiculous around the neck, named after the fine, ruff-wearing dog from Punch and Judy. Moving on… you'll be relieved to know that I never intended to keep the original bow on the front. I might have a thing for bow blouses, but even I realised that a giant one would be just too Dog Toby for the beach!

Let's talk about what was right about the pattern instead. What drew me to it was the fact that I managed to get away with not inserting a side zip the first time I made it. It has bust darts and contour darts to the front and back, so although it's roomy, there's enough shaping there to still make it look fitted. It also has cute keyhole details at the front and back neckline which I thought would be a nice feature for holiday wear.  I wanted it to be a quick make, so as well as the bow, I also decided against including the collar - it would just be a simple shell top with added keyhole details. 

It sewed together like a dream but when I tried it on, the neck was too high. It wasn't unnaturally high, just not as casual as I'd hoped. I decided to lower the front neckline and have the front fasten with a thin bias binding bow - I'd still get a bit of bow blouse action, just not of the Mrs Slocombe variety. I lowered the front neckline edge by about an inch and drew a curve to join it up with the rest of the neckline. Because the neckline is finished with self bias binding, I simply cut out double the amount of neck binding and let the remainder hang loose from the centre front edges. This extra neck binding became my bow. Simple!

Back detail: fastened at the neck with a  button and handworked thread loop
The fabric is a Japanese cotton lawn from the same selection at Abakhan that my lemon lawn came from. I was delighted to receive a gift voucher from Mr Will Abakhan himself as a thank you for inadvertently helping to shift copious amounts of lemon lawn fabric! The voucher burnt a hole in my pocket for all of five minutes before I blew the whole lot on….more cotton lawn! I couldn't resist, it's so soft and lightweight, absolutely perfect for hot weather clothing. I chose two metres of a gorgeous red and turquoise rose print, and as the blouse only requires a front piece, a back piece and a few strips of bias binding, I still have nearly 1.5 metres left to make a dress with next year. Woohoo! I didn't bother underlining it this time as I deliberately wanted it to be as light as possible.

It took me one morning to cut out and sew the blouse together, and another to fiddle with the neckline, so it was still a quick, easy make. It teams up really well with my vast collection of red and denim skirts, shorts and capri trousers too, hoorah! Thank you for the generous gift voucher Abakhan - last minute holiday top sorted!  

I'd quite like to plan ahead next year and make a few more holiday tops or camisoles. I've got my eye on the new Silk Cami pattern from Sew Over It, which looks promising, plus there's some great inspiration in Katie's recent Camisole Crazy post, but if you know of any other suitable top patterns (preferably without zips or buttons) please share them in the comments. Happy Monday! x

Thursday 14 August 2014

OWOP Guest Post from Scruffy Badger Time

Today is the first of three guest posts written by sewing bloggers especially for One Week, One Pattern. We kick off with Winnie from Scruffy Badger Timewoop, woop! Winnie is an amazing seamstress. with a colourful and classy hand-stitched wardrobe to match her warm and vibrant personality. I'm lucky enough to have met her countless times over the years and now consider her a true friend (amazing fact: my husband Jon use to deliver the paper to Winnie's house as a teenage paperboy!!!!) When she's not running marathons or trying out a new wig, Winnie is a dab hand at accessorising with scarves. Here's what she has to say on the subject.

Have Scarves Will Style
When Jane asked me to write a guest post on style as part of OWOP I didn’t flounder on the concept of articulating my own personal style, which is haphazard to say the least and subject to all sorts of whims, occasions and!  I immediately thought  accessorise".  I mean if you want to get more mileage out of an outfit during OWOP, accessories can be a lifesaver. And for me that means accessorizing with scarves primarily.  There have been so many style icons and stylists along the way that have extolled the virtues of the right accessories to transform an otherwise sad outfit into one that is starlet fit, or just plain classy.  So it is nothing new. But this is about One Week, One Pattern and as with many of our online challenges this can often bring insights and new ways to looks at things you’ve made.  And if there’s a message through this post, it is to say “don’t forget about your accessories! 

So I’ve put a few combinations together to show how I use scarves, Scruffy Badger-style through lots of snaps of clothes I’ve made carefully arranged on my bedroom floor, hopefully having smoothed out any storage creases!!   (But not all – oops!)
I choose to wear scarves to:

- Bring some pep to an outfit that is made up of a lot of solid neutral colours

- Pick out colours in the pattern of a skirt to ‘finish’ an outfit

-       Add some jauntiness & interest – it’s amazing what a polka dot scarf can do when paired with some nautical stripes;

-       The right scarf (with a more solid pattern) can also bring a touch of harmony to combining prints even;

      - Raise a neckline that is a bit low or chilly;

- Change the shape of a neckline to suit my face shape – eg a boatneck / slash neckline doesn’t suit me so well, but creating a focus on a scarf to draw a round neckline suits my face shape much better.

I like to wear a scarf around my neck, primarily, but from there it varies.  Depending on the neckline of the garment I am wearing, I might:

-       Tie it around my neck, as a strip/band – almost like a very wide choker;

   - Tie it as above but with a cute bow to the side;

-     Folded into a triangle then tied into a knot at the front of the garment’s neck edge;

I do not like too much volume though and I tend to take larger scarves, fold them into a triangle, then roll along the long edge (a bit like a cub scout scarf!) to get the volume of fabric under control and therefore able to be tied in a bow, or wrapped around itself. 

I’ve messed around with different combinations in these photos, but look here at how different scarves look with the same outfit

Most of these scarves are RTW – some vintage even, but I have made my own too, using precious fabric leftovers and extending their appearance and wear in another form.  I have made a couple of Brigitte scarves from Tilly’s “Love at First Stitch”- one of these and its many ways to wear shown here.  But jumped on this opportunity and quickly posted a tutorial on my blog for using your overlocker’s rolled hem to make a natty scarf.  So if you like the idea of accessorizing, why not have a go at making your own? 

Wow Winnie, I think that must be the definite guide to accessorising with scarves, THANK YOU! I love how the outfits are styled too, and have to agree - a polka dot scarf paired with nautical stripes really is a winning combo!  I hope Winnie's words of scarf-wearing wisdom have given you some pointers for OWOP and using scarves as a wonder accessory. Look out for another OWOP styling instalment next week. x

Monday 11 August 2014

Tie-less Miette

Don't get too excited, there isn't anything new or shiny to see. I've just fiddled about with my Miette skirt to make it more wearable. I did this with a couple of skirts last year and gave one of them (the grey floral one) a whole new lease of life - in fact I'm wearing it as I type this! Sadly the green one still didn't do much for me, so was brutally culled from my wardrobe.

This year I decided to tackle my Tilly and the Buttons Miette skirt. I made it over a year ago but have only worn it once or twice because I just couldn't get on with the big bow at the waistband. It's a lovely bow and all that, just too big, which means I can't ever wear anything untucked as it gets in the way. In fact before I set to work on my Miette skirt I wore it for a while to see if I'd change my mind about it. Within minutes I'd caught the bloody ties in the cutlery drawer which sealed the deal - the bow had to go!

Before: lovely but impractical bow

After: not as pretty but infinitely more wearable
Some clever stitchers dispensed with the bow and made their skirts tie-less right from the start (Lauren here and Fiona here) but having already made my Miette, I had to do it retrospectively. Despite my whingeing, it was a pretty simple refashion. I cut the ties to the shorter length I wanted, turned the ends in on themselves and slip stitched them closed. I then made two buttonholes in the ties and sewed two buttons onto the waistband. Easy peasy. I now have a simple tab feature on the waistband which I much prefer to the bow.

I also decided to wear the skirt a bit lower than when I first made it. Looking back at the photos in the original post (in which I look deranged) I'm wearing it too high to be comfortable, plus I don't think it's particularly flattering. Having it sit lower on my hips makes it much easier to wear and it gives the illusion of lengthening the skirt too, which it was in need of.

Before: worn high at the waist

After: worn lower down

My only regret is that I didn't get my finger out and do this earlier in the summer - but that's my own fault for being a lazy arse! I'd better get some wear out of it whilst the sun's still shining. Anybody else given their handmade garments a new lease of life recently? x

Yay! Love those tabs

Sunday 10 August 2014

The Polished Button giveaway winner

Big thanks to everybody who entered The Polished Button summer giveaway. The winner is Tatiana who wins a metre of this fab cotton sailboats fabric...

…and a set of four hand covered red and white striped buttons

Wahay! Congratulations Tatiana, please email me your address and I'll arrange for your prize to be sent to you. Thanks again to everybody who entered, and to Ruth at The Polished Button for such a great giveaway. x

Wednesday 6 August 2014

One Week, One Pattern: graphs and stuff

Well, I promised you sub-standard graphs for OWOP and that's exactly what you're about to see! Quite a few of you are still making up your minds about which pattern to use (which is totally fine by the way, it's not a decision to be taken lightly), so these stats are based on what people have signed up for so far. You wouldn't believe how long these bits of rubbish took me to create, and they're still not perfect. But hopefully they'll give you an idea of which patterns and garments you're all choosing to work with.

Amongst the pattern companies, Colette is the clear winner with about 15% of you choosing to use their patterns. The chart below shows all companies that have had their patterns chosen more than once. Not shown are a long list of new indie companies whose names only cropped up once - I just couldn't fit them on the graph!

The one big difference since the last OWOP is that far more independent pattern companies now exist. Last time, Colette was still the dominant pattern company, with relative newcomer Sewaholic the only other independent pattern company in the top ten. Things have changed quite dramatically this year, with 57% of chosen patterns being from independent companies. What I refer to as Commercial Patterns (Simplicity, New Look, Butterick, Vogue, McCalls and Burda) represent 29%, with a fair few of you (8%) choosing to use patterns that come from books. A handful are using a self drafted pattern and just two people (myself included) will be using a vintage pattern.

When it comes to type of garment chosen, there's a big shake up in this category too. As you'd expect, the majority of you have chosen a top, blouse or shirt pattern as they offer the most choice for styling. The skirt is still relatively popular, and just a few of you have gone for trousers or shorts. I think if I had a go-to trouser pattern I'd be tempted to choose trousers too, but I haven't quite found it yet. The big surprise though, is that dress patterns have proved to be so popular.  The thing I love about dresses is that you have a whole outfit in one go and obviously lots of you (34%) feel the same way too! What's great to see is that there are lots of popular indie dress patterns cropping up, such as the Colette Moneta, Kitschy Coo's Lady Skater dress and the Emery dress by Christine Haynes. Tried and tested designs from the larger companies still remain popular - it's nice to see Simplicity 2444 getting a couple of mentions too! 

There you go - FASCINATING STUFF! My charts may not be very professional looking but I can give any statistician a good run for their money when it comes to boring you rigid!  There's still a month to go before One Week, One Pattern kicks off, so if you fancy it (and who wouldn't after reading that?!) then go and sign yourself up on this post. We'd love to have you on board. x


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