Author Archives: maggi toner-edgar

About maggi toner-edgar

Creative Style Consultancy Fashion and Textile Practitioner Art/Education Writer/Research

C-Art workshop

C-Art workshops are going to be keeping me busy this week.

Drawing for DoubtersTango embrace

Mon 14th Sep: 1-3pm free short workshop at

Florence Mine Arts Centre. Offered as part of the GROUND 2 exhibition for C-Art. Mark-making with charcoals and Egremont Red pastels. Some materials provided. Continue reading

Pattern Cutting Sunday 20th September: create paper pattern for a dress

If you fancy an idyllic Sunday 20th September creating a perfect paper pattern for a dress to fit and suit your figure type. We work in a magnificent location with lovely homemade lunch, ring Annie and book onto a course at the Quirky Workshops at Greystoke Cycle Cafe, Cumbria.…

There are spaces available so book early. Looking forward to seeing you there – you get a free copy of my E-book, ‘Be Remarkable’.

Lovely colourful shift dress

Lovely colourful shift dress

Straight fitted sleeveless dress

Straight fitted sleeveless dres

Hermes style dress with a lovely pink band at the hem

Add sleeves or jacket to make it more formal.

Add sleeves or jacket to make it more formal.











If you did one last year then come along and build your sleeve and collar patterns.  You can easily alter neckline, shape of dress, fabric weight and pattern hem length and width to create a multitude of styles.  Just change the fabric and change the look and season – so easy – make more roomy and add a turle neck for autumn.Hope to see some of you there.

Capsule Wardrobe


Twiggy – the simple clean 60s look great for androgynous figure types who love to show their legs.

brjude classic cut04

Jeans the staple…

General tips

Capsule Wardrobe

If you think about the job of a fashion designer, part of it is to devise a collection that works together for the brand.  Therefore, all dresses, tops, skirts and trousers are usually interchangeable within each range to encourage the client to stay shopping with the same company showing devoted loyalty.  This is the type of collection that would be produced and this can form your capsule wardrobe if you are clever in your colour and fabric choices.

Given these 12 items you would be able to create 40 outfits with them.  What more does a woman need?

  1. One good quality woollen coat, classic in style but perhaps a strong colour, one trenchcoat short or long, classic usually works the best, to use anywhere (or a padded outdoor jacket for more casual wear).
  2. Two well fitted superb good quality suits, (or more commonly these days two sets of separates) which work well together jackets trousers/skirts.
  3. Two pieces of good quality knitwear a bold coloured cardigan and preferably a loose V-necked merino or cashmere sweater in a simple neutral colour eg: taupe, black, navy or grey.
  4. One day dress in black/navy – corporate coloured jersey with sleeves, which can be worn from day through to evening, with flats or heels, not too revealing or covered up or can be worn with your cardigan.
  5. One stunning but simple evening dress in a bold colour of your choice if you suit black this is the easiest to wear, if not go for a colour that you suit red, pink, emerald, purple, blue or cream are good bold choices depending upon your colour type. This should fit well and be of sumptuous cloth, preferably lined and working well with one of your coats/jackets.
  6. A pair of simple good fitting jeans, which feel ultra comfy and look good with everything else in your wardrobe, pick a good make but ensure comfort and fit comes before brand.
  7. One pair of sandals/loafers or ballet pump flats, a pair of heeled leather court shoe/boots a stylish and elegant pair of evening shoes and a pair of boots/hightops.
  8. Finally at least 4 tops or shirts in a variety of styles and colours and fabrics to dress up your suits, preferably interchangeable with both suits and jeans. This is where you can add to the selection and ring the changes.

If you start to imagine all of these together in different combinations, I am sure you too could create at least 40 outfits.  I managed 57 varieties with all the different accessories, tops and permutations bearing in mind that all the colours should work together.

singer sargent 1884

Boned- bodice evening wear – Singer Sargent 1884 (Classic chic )

Shopping Mantra

 Remember the ‘Shopping Mantra’ – 6 C’s CHARACTER,  CLOTH,  COLOUR,  CUT,  COST and  CORRECT FIT don’t buy if you have to lie  – to yourself about any one of these. My Shopping Mantra, which has been very useful and saved women lots of money. See the Capsule Wardrobe tip sheet which goes alongside this. Plan your wardrobe, after a wardrobe session keep the list in your purse of what would actually extend the pieces you already have. Don’t go shopping when trying to cheer yourself up. Don’t buy too many disparate prints in clashing colours that need careful matching. Don’t buy too long, big and baggy unless you are very tall. Don’t buy unless it matches your capsule wardrobe basics (personalise this to your colourways). Don’t buy if the cost, cloth, character, colour, cut and size are incorrect for you – it has to be right in every way or it is a waste of money. Don’t buy on a whim, go think about it and then return, you may realise you have a top exactly like it or that you need another colour – or may need something else. DO: Use special events to purchase something you have always wanted and make sure it becomes your beloved well worn staple, rather than just adding to a diverse difficult to match collection. Decide what other hobby/interest makes you feel good as opposed to shopping to cheer yourself up, trying a new hair style or make-up look, hair accessories or a lovely magazine to give you ideas for revamping or reusing or to help you update your look with a few accessories. Write a list of things that make you feel happy and use them as a means of focusing your shopping trips or afternoons off. Eg:- spend some of your usual shopping time meeting for coffee with friends you rarely see. Try to be more creative with the clothes you already have.  Find a good dressmaker to alter previous expensive purchases and update them. DO BUY THOUGHTFULLY AND NOT TOO OFTEN SO THAT YOU DON’T FEEL GUILTY AS THESE ARE THE PURCHASES THAT WILL MAKE YOU FEEL GOOD.  Remember the ‘Shopping Mantra’ CHARACTER,  CLOTH,  COLOUR,  CUT,  COST and  CORRECT FIT don’t buy if you have to lie  – to yourself about any one of these.    

Lanvin: Master of Bias

An old favourite of mine – would simply love to see this exhibition, I love the way it is described in this little vid.

Lanvin video

Jeanne Lanvin, evening dress, 1935-1936. Collection of the Palais Galliera. Photo : © R. Briant et L. Degrâces / Galliera / Roger-Viollet

Alber Elbaz is very emotional, but whilst describing the dresses the white satin one for me could be worn today totally timeless, classic and elegant chic.

Today the first Paris exhibition devoted to Jeanne Lanvin, founder of the oldest French fashion house still in business, opens at the Palais Galliera. Curated by Olivier Saillard in collaboration with Lanvin creative director Alber Elbaz, the show explores the breadth of Jeanne Lanvin’s artistry as a designer.’s Tim Blanks had the opportunity to preview the show with Elbaz to discuss the importance of her work, from the house’s iconic mother/daughter logo to Jeanne Lanvin’s final piece—a simple dress with “wings.” Elbaz explains that for years Jeanne Lanvin didn’t get the recognition she deserved because her pieces whispered, they didn’t shout. “But when you go deeper…,” he says. Take a deeper look with Elbaz and Blanks here.

Jeanne Lanvin is on display at the Palais Galliera through August 23.​

Flying with the flag of no colour : sorry meant white

After going on about flying colours = look at all this lovely whitestuff!  I am just addicted to anything lacey, holey, semi-transparent, diaphonous, delicate, feminine and girly without looking too frilly.  This has got to be it, pity that my weather and pocket might forbit it this Spring.  Go see more of what Christian Siriano is doing for SS 2015.  Number three is a good one for me – giving me inspiration already can feel some stitching coming on…

#SwooningOverSpring IMG_0277






Great style blogger

Go see the last straggler – she has a lovely blog which involves a lot of time and effort with stunning examples of unique style, music and art.

I just love her choices

See below Erykah Badu: Queen of style:  Just so unique so colourful so true to her own feelings and ideas, just love when all the character oozes out of the person through their sense of individuality. Also some great blog posts on Nathalie Trad bags – lovely ….  or if she isn’t your cup of tea ( as it were) go more  bubblegum a totally different approach and a great update on New York Fashion Week.

erykah10erykah 11Serykah8

Flying Colours

Design education and brand development
Flying Colours – Colour Report

See some of my basic views on colour below, based upon some really good work online including

some information taken from the following sites.

See my basic code: most of the colourways fit neatly into the following categories.

Light/deep/clear/muted/warm and cool.
Cool colour palette is usually those who have pink undertones in
their skin, who burn easily, their eyes are usually blue, brown black, slate,
or cool grey. The darker cool palettes can have a bluish tinge to veins,
and very dark almost black eyes with ashy, olive or bluish tones.

Warm colour palettes are generally those with yellowish

undertones to the skin. The light and the dark complexions show slightly
greenish tinge to veins. Their eyes are usually green, hazel to brown and
deep brown, if blue there is often a yellow or warm grey aspect to the

Autumn colour palettes>

Winter colour palette >

Colour matches are based upon skin, hair and eyes, but women do
change their hair colour often. It is always better to go with your natural
original hair colour where possible or keep hair within cool or warm
There is also a muted story where the colour of the skin, hair and eyes
are soft and closely related as a colour story. Celebrities examples
include Jennifer Aniston, Nicole Kidman and Sarah Jessica Parker.

download (1)nude satin
Bright and clear contrasting colour palettes are easy to spot eg:-
Courtney Cox with clear bright blue eyes, pale skin and dark hair. This is
typically cool, clear and contrasting.
It is easy to see where striking examples fit this code. Difficulty
emerges when a colour palette is neutral, soft and not easy to fit into a
particular category, and it feels uncomfortable classifying people so
tightly when we are all unique and have strong character preferences.
We all have our own tastes and this is when these variations come to the
fore. I enjoy exploring the effect certain colours have on people in relation to

their psyche, sometimes they literally hate a colour that they really suit for some reason

usually related to past horrible memories.
Our personal nest of colours are the ones that make us feel good,
look good which are uplifting and if we choose well they all go together as a family of
colours. Working out the basic 12 to 24 shades of colours that suit is not
only very satisfying, but saves a lot of wasted money and time as it
encourages personal style rather than just following fashion trends slavishly and it is fun to
do. It means all our clothes go together and it shows the complexion off
to its best. It can have a dramatic effect on our view of how much make
up we need to wear and the ageing process in general and how it affects us
If you look online there are many sites to help you identify your
palette, however calibration of computer screens is often inaccurate and
can be confusing. Carrying it out in real life is better. But much
information can be found for example by following a celebrity who has the
closest colouring to you, it is easy to explore images of celebs in different colours and the effects can easily be seen.

I tend to use a more

personal updated

typology, based on 12 variables
instead of 4 season types. In
order to accommodate
people whose colouring
is close to neutral in
either variable and to
differentiate much better
than the traditional seasonal approach, by adding a secondary factor and an additional character element.

This secondary factor depends on your colouring’s most defining quality:
light, deep, clear, muted, warm or cool. Your secondary factor can help
you further narrow down your own colour palette. If you work between two
different seasonal palettes, it’s probably because they both share your most
defining quality. If you are interested in colour and are considering
adjusting or updating your wardrobe accordingly, I strongly recommend
you figure out your secondary factor as well as your base season before
spending money. It will just give you a much more accurate idea of which
colours suit your individual complexion – if you are going to use any kind
of typology, do it right. Here’s a run-down of the six secondary factors:

Light: You are either a light Summer or a light Spring.
Your hair colour is light (blond or light brown), your skin is light for
your ethnicity and your eyes are either a light blue, green or grey. You
look best in the soft, light and muted shades of your colour palette, e.g.
peach (Spring) or a pale lavender (Summer).
Deep: You are either a deep Autumn or a deep Winter.
You have dark brown or black hair and deep brown, green or hazel
eyes. You look amazing in the deep, vivid shades of your palette, e.g.
deep terracotta (Autumn) or black (Winter).

pen cruz
Warm: You are either a warm Spring or a warm Autumn.
Your overall colouring has a distinctive warm undertone to it. Your
hair is either golden blond to brown, or strawberry blond to deep auburn.
Your eyes are green, topaz, hazel or light to medium brown. You best suit
the mid-range colours in your palette that are neither too intense nor pale,
e.g. a medium tomato red (Autumn) or a soft aquamarine (Spring)

Cool: You are either a cool Summer or a cool Winter.
Regardless of whether you have light or dark skin/hair, your overall
colouring has an underlying cool quality to it. Like the warm type, you also
look best in the mid-range shades of your palette, e.g. emerald green
(Winter) or periwinkle (Summer).

Clear: You are either a clear Winter or a clear Spring.
Your overall colouring is high in contrast and saturation. Your hair is
either a medium brown to black or a vivid, bright blond, your eyes are
blue, bright green, topaz, amber or turquoise. You look best in saturated,
clear colours, e.g. a bright, warm pink (Spring) or hot pink (Winter).


Muted: You are either a muted Summer or a muted Autumn.
There is little contrast between your skin, hair and eyes and
sometimes your overall colouring is relatively close to neutral. Your hair is
neither very light nor very dark. Your eyes are green, grey-blue, hazel or
brown. You look best in soft, muted shades, e.g. olive green (Autumn) or
blue teal (Summer).

Virgin-Uniforms_2615864kfemale air france
Emotional responses can be aroused very quickly when people are in a situation that causes distress or excitement.

For instance when we are boarding an aeroplane looking at the air steward
uniforms,  this has been carefully considered with Air France, Belgian airlines and Quantas where there are great examples of quality design. When emotions are heightened colours seem to have a
stronger impact, so people contained in a small space are easily affected. Navy Blue and Grey are particularly good colours to induce trust and professionalism.


leather cafe

Creative character styling for a cafe.

This concept is easily carried over to other
architectural spaces, large or small, real or virtual

eg:- interior decor and websites.
Looking into the meaning of colours or
investigating them online can help you to make
wiser choices for interior decoration of shops,
bars and restaurants and in waiting rooms and
consultation rooms. This research is best done
prior to creating logos and choosing corporate
clothing, for obvious reasons. If colours need to
be toned down or lived up, smaller scale
accessories for interiors and clothing can alter
the appearance dramatically. It can be the make or break element of
keeping clients longer in a space they feel comfortable. Or on the other hand, moving people through a space quickly making room for more clients as soon as possible. The circle below is a fantastic graphic to help you understand how

colour is perceived across the globe.

Shows meaning of colours in lots of different countries.

Shows meaning of colours in lots of different countries.

The theory of colour involves science, art and psychology, a
strange and powerful mix. It is best dealt with on an intuitive level, it is like
taste preferences with food. You can use a sketch pad, or a Pinterest
board is a good way of developing your personal style. Stylists practice
combining individual elements to create visuals to evoke a certain feeling.
I dream up a particular event or scenario and bring it to life using lots of
different images to define which clothes the context requires. These are
my moodboards because they define a particular mood, inspire colours,
textures and character styling, although sometimes an individual board is
needed for each of these elements. I don’t have to stick to the details, It is
just about letting my intuition guide me to come up with something
visually dramatic. It is fun to create, these kinds of boards as they are
also a great way to practice your styling skills and train your eye.

Gallery Artemis – Come and see my exhibition

Come and see my exhibition in Gallery Artemis upstairs on Main St. Cockermouth

Come and see my exhibition in Gallery Artemis upstairs on Main St. Cockermouth.

New arts/craft courses coming up!

Craft Days in the future PATTERN-CUTTING, DRAWING, STITCHING, CERAMICS Get in touch if you would like to start a creative session for a group of your friends, either in the run up to Xmas 2014 or beyond, as I am about to begin a new project offering creative opportunities to the general public on a regular basis, a great chance to hone your art or craft skills and take them to a new level. Watch this space for future info on venues and courses:

  • A chance to start from scratch .
  • Expert tuition .
  • Creative instruction.
  • Learn a new skill and have a go!
  • + tea and biscuits
  • brj slim jess workwear077

Please ring 07773158941 to book arrange for a creative session for your group of friends or colleagues. E.g.s of my own illustrations and 3 D textile projects below. The corset is on show at the Little Bird Gallery, Askham nr Penrith. Corset inner strength12 love apron

Carnet de Dame Catherine

Mode, Innovation, Voyage, Société

SGFA Journal

The online magazine of the Society of Graphic Fine Art - The Drawing Society


Smart and surprising

PhotoBook Journal

The Contemporary Photobook Magazine

If Books Could Blog

The written word is the only saviour this world needs.


because thread is the best glue.

Canadian Art Junkie

Visual Arts from Canada & Around the World


things and not things.

Style Assassins

Dressing well is the best revenge.

Fashion For Lunch.

Buy the shoes. Buy the bag. Dine well.

My Student Wardrobe

Express yourself through style !

I love green inspiration

cultivating fashion and design