Basic is not so Boring: Simplicity 8337

I find that most people struggle with balancing personal style with appropriate professional style (unless professional attire is your jazz). I mean, where do you draw the line? When is the canary yellow blouse with gold trim highlight too much? The answer to that question depends on your profession and your geographic area. For example, I'm an attorney working in the south. My general rule of thumb, since finishing law school, is office attire is what is appropriate for an unexpected court appearance or client meeting. Contrary to television insinuations, showing up to court in a canary yellow or fiery red power-suit is not idea. Simply put, navy, black, gray, and white is my typical work color scheme. Now I must admit that I am ok with that color scheme, since these are some of my favorite colors to wear anyway. 


At any rate, it is easy to mix your personal style with your professional wardrobe once you know your workplace culture.  But it is always smart to invest in basic pieces. Once you do that you can throw in pieces that mix well with your basic pieces but also reflect your personal style.  Speaking of personal style, let’s talk about this outfit. 

I love fall and couldn't wait to sew some fall transition pieces. In my area it is likely to be 60 degrees when you leave the house for work and be 75 degrees when you leave the office for lunch.  Needless to say, sleeveless shirts are still my jam. That’s why my first project was this black & white color block blouse.  Simplicity 8337 offers you five different top versions with sleeve variation using a basic t-shirt pattern.  You can easily turn this into classy blouse with the right type of fabric. For my project I went with a black and white knit Jersey Knit purchased from Hobby Lobby.  I picked this fabric because of the sheen and its light weight.  The pattern instructions are easy and straight forward.  This view, view C, consist of five pattern pieces.  The front bodice is two pieces and the ruffle piece is sandwiched between the front bodice seam.  I ignored the pattern’s sizing suggestion and cut the size XS.  The instructions for this pattern were easy to follow because I was already familiar with method they suggested for attaching the band for the collar and armhole. The bands are attached to each corresponding area similar to how bias tape would be attached. If this is new to you, follow the instructions verbatim and you will be fine.


This pencil skirt is also a new make.  I used my skirt block (I made one last year when I was taking sewitacademy courses) to create this skirt.  I had to make a few adjustments to the original skirt block because I have grown a few inches in the hip and waist area.  To finish the hem of the skirt I used my sewing machine blind hem foot.  It was not perfect but I have plenty of time to practice to perfect it. I am in desperate need of suit skirts, all my old ones are being donated to goodwill, so correcting the skirt block was necessary.

As for the other pieces, the pumps are Nine West’s Viyana, which were purchased last year.  The fabric version is no longer available but you can still get it in leather here. The blazer is from H&M.  I love the versatility of this blouse, I can easily change into a pair of jeans and ankle boots and be ready for date night.  With that being said, cast aside those fears of shaking up your work wardrobe; good forward and shop merrily.