Brrrrrrr…! The weather has certainly turned (boo!) which means one thing; we can make things for our autumn/winter wardrobes without sweating like beasts in our sewing rooms (yay!!!) I thought I’d help you along a little bit and share with you some of my fave pieces on the high street at the moment and which patterns and fabrics to use to make something similar. Think of me as your own personal Fabricate Gok Wan, if you will.
Look No. 1: Animal Print
This is HUUUUGE this season. My advice? Be careful! I love an animal print but it is so easy to end up looking more soap opera trashy barmaid than hot vixen. Use sparingly and think about what you’re teaming it with, i.e. maybe leave the overstated jewellery at home!
I love this look from Warehouse. I’m a sucker for anything that looks great with a black ankle boot, considering I own approximately 30,000 pairs, and I love how classy this looks with covered arms and no plunging necklines but still lets you show a bit of leg!
How to Recreate
Our new Wild Animal Print Jersey is perfect for recreating this. Team it with the Deer & Doe Givre Dress pattern for a similar look or if you daren’t go full on animal, how about going for the t-shirt version of the same pattern or even a Freya top from the Tilly and the Buttons Stretch! book with a black pencil skirt or skinny jeans. Throw on a pair of heels (or black boots, obvs!) and you will be good. to. go.
If you want to add a bit of animal print to your wardrobe but don’t want to go uber-leopard, like this dress from Mint Velvet, choose a fabric with a hint of animal about it, like our new viscose jerseys; Peacock and Jungle Queen:
I love the nod to wildlife coupled with the colour contrasts in these two. Try them with the Nina Lee Mayfair Dress, which has fab pleating and gathering detail, for something a bit special.
Look No. 2: Checks/Geometrical Prints
If there is one print to strike fear into the heart of any dressmaker with a pattern-matching OCD, it’s a check. Am I right or am I right?! If you’re shaking at the thought of making something with checks (or any bold pattern where mis-matching will be obvious) KEEP IT SIMPLE! Look at the garments above – very simple. A front piece cut on the fold, two back pieces and then sleeves and patch pockets if you’re lucky. Don’t go picking a pattern with 5000 pieces to it; something with a bold and glorious print doesn’t need to be made into anything too fussy. Let the print take all the glory rather than the pattern!
Here are some of our fave geometrical prints this season:
Use them for a Tilly and the Buttons Cleo Dungaree Dress, Nina Lee Carnaby Dress (to wear as a pinafore) or just a simple Grainline Studio Moss Skirt. Wear them with a polo neck jumper, tights and knee high boots for a classic retro feel.
Alternatively, if you want to wear the fabric on its own without any layering, try a simple shift dress pattern like the Sew Over It Zoe Dress:
Look No. 3: Corduroy Joy!
No longer confined to the torsos of male science teachers, corduroy should now be an integral part of everyone’s wardrobe! Personally, I have always loved a bit of cord, whether it was “on trend” or not, so this is nothing new to me. Use it for shirt dresses, skirts, dungaree dresses, trews or anything you goddarn like!
This skirt can easily be recreated using the Grainline Studio Moss Skirt sewing pattern and one of our corduroys. If you’re not feeling a zip, try the asymmetrical Tilly and the Buttons Arielle Skirt which uses buttons instead and can also be made into a longer pencil skirt.
The tie belt detail can easily be made without a pattern; cut out a strip of fabric however long you want the belt to be by around 8cm wide, fold it in two lengthways right sides together, sew along one of the short ends and along the long side with a 1.5cm seam allowance, trim the seam allowance and corner and turn it the right way round. Press it so the seam lies to one side and Bob’s your uncle! You could even stitch the belt to the dress at the centre back if you wanted to help keep it in place, but you’ll also be fine if you want it to roam free!
I know, I know, sometimes I even bore myself with my love of the Cleo by Tilly and the Buttons. Not really, I could sing Cleo’s praises all day every day like some kind of mad Cleo cult leader. They are ace. Make at least three. The end.
You could also use corduroy for a wintry pair of Closet Case Jenny Overalls or a Fiona Sundress to wear over a polo neck. Personally, I see a pair of True Bias Lander Pants in my future. If only I could wear a fedora as stylishly as the lady on the pattern cover…
Hopefully I’ve given you a bit of fashion inspo there for this autumn/winter season and remember to keep checking our Just Arrived section for all our new patterns and fabrics as we have lots of other lovely new fabrics in stock now. This gets updated a lot. And very regularly. It’s an illness.
Happy sewing dudes!