Monday 31 March 2014

Style Sudoku | How to build a capsule wardrobe

Style Sudoku - How to build a capsule wardrobe - Su Sews So So

Who doesn’t dream of a capsule wardrobe, where each piece works beautifully with multiple other items in your wardrobe? But building a capsule wardrobe can often be a daunting task. Personally my taste is too eclectic to even attempt to live by a capsule wardrobe alone, but I think it’s a fantastic way to plan for a holiday or trip – or, far more importantly, it’s a great way to make a sewing plan ( well, this IS a sewing blog after all)!

I’m not going to take credit for Style Sudoku, I actually saw this idea in a Grazia magazine a few years ago, and it has stuck in my mind since. I struggle to wear my handmade clothes on a regular basis, and I think one of the reasons is because I don’t have enough other things to pair with them to make workable outfits. So I thought that it might be more sensible to Sew With A Plan (as many of you will have done/talked about before). The Style Sudoku is a very clever and organic way of developing and building your own capsule wardrobe, or capsule sewing plan!

The principal is simple; 4 tops, 4 bottoms, 4 shoes and 4 accessories (It doesn’t work so well with dresses unfortunately. My thinking is that a dress is an outfit of it’s own almost anyway, so you could just add a couple of coordinating dresses to the mix to provide you with even more choice). The placement of your pieces are key to making this Sudoku work, so I’ve created the basic template to help you:

Style Sudoku key - su sews so so

From this grid, outfits can be created by reading horizontally, vertically or diagonally:

How to choose your outfit

Once you have this grid you can start building your wardrobe. I have found that it is easiest if you stick to a very limited palette, perhaps pick 2 neutrals and add one accent colour. For my example, I’ve gone with Black, Denim and Bright Pink:

Style Sudoku - Holiday 1

Here are some of the outfits you can get from this Style Sudoku:

Holiday Outfit OptionsIt’s worth noting that corner pieces coordinate with three possible outfits, so make sure those are the most versatile. It’s also harder to build your Style Sudoku if you have too many pieces with patterns – unless you are a pro at pattern mixing (I am not!!). Working with this grid system you can build 10 different outfit options. But actually, if you stick to a limited colour palette and pick simple styles, then essentially you open yourself up an awful lot more choice!

I have been using this Style Sudoku idea to help plan some of my future sewing projects and I can’t wait to share my Sudoku plan in a future post. I am excited at the possibility of so many different outfit options for my handmade clothes!

So what do you guys think? Is this a system you could adopt? Have I inspired you to start planning your next holiday wardrobe?!
If any of you try out your own Style Sudoku I would love to see it – please share a link in the comment section below or ping me an email!

(Links to the pieces in my sample Style Sudoku can be found here, and if you like to use Polyvore I’ve made a Style Sudoku template to help with your wardrobe planning)

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