{Capsule Wardrobe Sew Along} "Staple" Sewing Patterns

Hey there, my capsule sewing lovelies! Long time no blog! We just sold our home and are in the process of moving, so don't expect to see a whole lot of new sewing from me for the next little while. BUT THAT'S OK - because I have another newly-acquired hobby. Creating sewing surveys, and never publishing the results!

Except apparently, this time. (And all the other times too - I'll get the tester's survey data up ASAP, for those of you who haven't totally given up on that yet!) But I digress - Who is ready for some insta-data-results??

"Um, cool Becca, but what results are we talking about exactly??"

Why, the results of my "Staple Sewing Patterns" survey, of course! It's exciting stuff, because 145 of you turned out in the first few hours to weigh in. (That is AWESOME!) Thanks for referring your favorite patterns to fellow sewists! 

That's right - I picked the most standard pattern categories, and recruited your sewing friends to nominate their favorite pattern in that category. You'll notice though, that not all 145 survey participants filled out every field. That's ok! I asked them not to. If they had no experience sewing patterns in that category, I didn't want them to just make something up. You'll see how many folks weighed in, and the final nomination count for each pattern that received 5 or more nominations. (Other repeat suggestions are listed as "honorable mentions" in the captions). 

**The photos above (with the exception of my own) are borrowed from the product listings. Please scroll to the bottom of this post for links to each "staple" patterns pictured above.

**The photos above (with the exception of my own) are borrowed from the product listings. Please scroll to the bottom of this post for links to each "staple" patterns pictured above.

Now lets get something straight before we dive in: this is a bias survey. Now don't go bailing on me yet! It's still a worthwhile read! And the bias is hard to avoid. Here's why... 

  • MY BIAS - I offered up 2-3 pattern suggestions per survey question. They're equal parts "What comes to Becca's mind first" and "What patterns do I hear people talking about most?" I chose this radio-button field option as a courtesy to participants, to speed things along for them in a relatively long list of survey questions. There's always a chance that very suggestion skews the results. That said, there was ALWAYS an "insert your own answer" field - and it was used quite a bit. 
  • PARTICIPANT'S BIAS - I invited all the women of the Capsule group to share the survey with other women sewists. I don't know of any instances myself, but it is possible that they shared in "fan" groups - and fans being fans are going to promote their favorite patterns. My thoughts are - they still sew for themselves and their input is valuable regardless. 

So it's not perfect, but it's a reliable starting point when collecting your own "Pattern Staples." If, as you scroll through, you find that these patterns contradict your own experiences - I highly recommend you check out these articles. You'll either find a designer that drafts for your shape/size, or figure out where to start your fit-adjustment journey so you can make ANY pattern fit you like a glove.  

Alrighty - enough reading! Now you get to look at pretty pictures instead! 

Who Took The Survey?

Participants Described Their Body Type as...

Participants Described Themselves As...

Participants Described Their Skill Level As...

  • Beginner Seamstress (New to knits, buttonholes, zippers, princess seams, etc)
  • Intermediate Seamstress (Comfortable with knits, buttonholes, zippers, princess seams, etc)
  • Advanced Seamstress (Comfortable with all the above, plus fit adjustments, blending sizes, and hacking patterns)

Participants Described Their Wardrobe Needs as...

Is any of this relevant? I'm not sure yet. I'll go back through and look for correlations between body type and pattern suggestions - For instance, if my Pear friends consistently suggested a different pattern over the ones my Hourglass friends did in any particular category. But I'll await the return of my Excel-wizard husband to look for those connections. Pivot tables were as much formulaic "fun" as this creative mind cared to learn this afternoon. 

Pattern Suggestions: Tops


79 Responses Recorded. Honorable Mentions: Jocole, SUAT, Duck Butt Designs


74 Responses Recorded. Honorable Mention: Hey June (Aurora)


95 Responses Recorded. Honorable Mentions: Peek-a-boo Pattern Shop (Rainier Raglan), Duck Butt Designs (Really Awesome Women's Raglan)

Relax-Fit Top

85 Responses Recorded. Honorable Mention: SUAT (Merryweather)

Woven Top

53 Responses Recorded. Honorable Mentions: Grainline Studio (Scout), Hey June (Biscayne), Wiksten Tank, Shwin Designs (Lane)


33 Responses Recorded. Honorable Mention: Winter Wear Design

Layering Pieces

66 Responses Recorded. Honorable Mentions: Greenstyle Creations (One-Button Cardi), Patterns for Pirates (Carefree Cardi)

Pattern Suggestions: Pants


40 Responses Recorded.


59 Responses Recorded.

Relax-Fit Pants

65 Responses Recorded. Honorable Mention: Winter Wear Design (Aviators)


97 Responses Recorded. Honorable Mentions: Greenstyle Creations, Hey June, EYMM, Apple+Fig

Pattern Suggestions: Other

Most Versatile Dress

90 Responses Recorded. Honorable Mentions: Patterns for Pirates (Boundless), SUAT (Brazi)

Most Versatile Skirt

66 Responses Recorded. Honorable Mentions: Jocole (Pencil), Liesl & Co (Everyday Skirt)


Favorite Patterns That Didn't Fit in Prior Categories. 61 Responses Recorded

The "Staple" Pattern Winners are....


T-Shirt / Dolman / Raglan / Relaxed Top / Woven Top / Button-up / Layer / Jeans / Faux-Jeans / Jogger / Leggings / Dress / Skirt/ WILDCARD

So what do you think?? Do you agree with these choices?? Weigh in, and feel free to add your own favorites in the comments below!