Joyce realised that if she consistently bought 6 yards (5.5m) of 45"(115cm) or 60" (152cm) solid color fabric, she would always have enough to sew a complete basic wardrobe that includes jacket, slacks, skirt, top* and sometimes a dress.
Today, all her travel wardrobes are created from six-yard wardrobes, plus a few print accent garments and an assortment of accessories.(*I note the examples actually all have jacket, trousers, skirt and dress but I quite like the top and skirt idea as it can look like a dress or be separates).
Sewing Plums Blog has discussed this a few times.
Wardrobe in a weekend
Books for wardrobe planning
I bought a few lengths of fabric in 5-6 metre lengths after this though never managed to make more than 2 garments out of one fabric at the time. I've got more TnT patterns under my belt now so maybe this would be realistic now, as my skills are a bit better.
I have to say that the economic nature of the pattern piece tessellation is very appealing to me.
Whether this works or not depends on
- the size and style of the garments (larger/more complex take more fabric)
- lifestyle and personality (I can make pencil skirts but will I wear them?)
- whether the fabric works for all the different garment types - lightweight suiting or a stable knit seem good candidates.
Before pinterest I used to cut pictures out of magazines and catalogues and gather them in scrap books. I remember one suit I was absolutely fascinated with. It was a 4 piece suit in a dark navy pinstripe. Skirt, waistcoat, jacket and trousers all made in the same fabric, maybe there was a dress as well.
It seems a fairly timeless concept, you could buy a navy pinstripe 4 piece set from Dorothy Perkins today.
You could add waistcoat, city shorts, culottes to this list as well, perhaps a top.
Have you ever tried a 6 yard wardrobe, do you think they have a place in wardrobes today?