The Savvy Sage of Sewing Stimulation

Sewing with Style

There’s some interesting takes on he new “Core” style or “Minimalist” look.  Both are good takes on a classic look, and it’s fun to go through some of them.  These are from an article here, but here’s my take on these looks.  It’s important to realize that these are not exactly classic.  They are classic in the sense that they’re timeless, but there needs to be some normalization to the styles….so here we go!

This is a nice classic top, and designers will do this to get the attention of the fashion magazine editors and the press, but be careful of the proportions.  This top is pretty good, although we wouldn’t wear it with the cuffs this long.  Also I wouldn’t do this with the full pant leg either.  Either the pant or the top with a slender palette.  By that I mean leggings and a basic close top as the palette.  The pants with a contained slender top work.  But there is definitely no frou-frou to this and that’s what the article wants to point out.

Definitely a one-color look is classic no matter what color.  In black and white it’s beyond basic and classic.  These looks never fail and there’s really not that much you have to do to them to make them work.  They are so timeless they do all the work for you.

Texture is always a great timeless element. I’m not nuts about the proportion nor design of this garment, but I do love the texture, and that’s what we take away from this picture – the timeless pizazz that simply texture can add.  What makes this most dramatic is when the colors are right on a dead match.  Doing this when they are just a little off, is OK, but the really dramatic look is when they are dead on a match.

Tunics – for me this is the new classic garment to have in your wardrobe. They replace jackets as the old classic.  If you’re looking for a way to freshen up your wardrobe, the tunic is the answer, and keep it classic and it will be your new best friend….almost!

Going to an architectural look is always a classic theme.  This means you have to be very good at the simple techniques that go into make a garment….like darts and seams.  They may be curved and they will definitely make or break the look.  If you do add pockets, they have to be executed very well.  This look is as if you sculpted this garment and so the lines need to be simple and clean, and the fabric has to have a lot of body.  It can be a knit, and that would be an elegant, beautifully made Ponte di Roma (formerly know as Ponte), which is a stable knit that has a lot of body – no drape, or make it from a nice sturdy linen, cotton pique,  or silk matka for a few examples.  Don’t over think this design – the simpler the better, but do over-think the fit and how you will accomplish this.  Darts, princess seams, bust seams, side seams will all play key roles in making this look work.

I’m including this as their example of having one thing out of proportion.  And I like the idea of the top being sculpted and not flowy (notice in the minimalist’s wardrobe hardly anything is flowy or drapey), but those pants are just too full.  This works on the anorexic model, but not on the normal figure.  If you’re doing something like this, keep the out-of-proportion part just barely out of proportion.  Too much on small, short or stocky figures can get away from you really fast.
Hopefully that gave you some ideas about how to  look at a lot of these fashions and work them around to your size, shape and style.   These articles can really be a bevy of ideas!




  1. Claire, I love the fascinating fashion information you always provide! Your on-target analysis benefits all of us!!

  2. Claire; Great observations made! “I’m including this as their example of having one thing out of proportion. And I like the idea of the top being sculpted and not flowy…” May you share where did you get this sculptured top from. Thanks, Rosie.

    • Rosie – all the tops came from a site linked at the top of the blog:

      As for patterns, over on my Pinterest Page: “Patterns Tunics” are all great ideas for patterns for these styles.

      Mostly I include these styles as an observance -such as the shirttail hems, lack of gathering, use of tunic as a top in summertime and that sort of thing. But what I really like is the minimalist style of these garments. Minimalism is something that is getting more and more play, and I like to follow these trends as we sewists can hop on something like this quickly – even more quickly than heavy-hitter buyers can.

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