Wearing matching separates is a trend that’s set to continue but can everyone wear it? In the past this included the classic twin set – a knit cardigan and shell top – and work wear suits consisting of a jacket and skirt or trousers but things have changed!

Now what was once a fashion faux pas to wear the same matching fabric on top as on the bottom has become a fashionable and fun way to wear separates, and the bolder the print fabric the better according to High Street fashion. But can anyone wear it?


  • Make sure that the patterns you choose can all be made up with the same fabric eg. choose a pattern for both top and skirt that needs is for knit or for woven fabric.
  • Good fit is important to pulling off this look off. Choose princess seams and darts to ensure you’re not swamped by your fabric choice.
  • Don’t forget that these matching pieces can be worn separately too with jeans and other staple garments in your wardrobe.
  • Remember that contemporary combinations can include an array of different garments:
    Top + Skirt
    Top + Trousers
    Top + Shorts
    Dress + Jacket
  • Alternatively go for the body con option and use knit fabrics to contour your shape. Simplicity’s new multi-tasker range includes Simplicity 1258 with easy knit tube pattern pieces to make strapless tops, skirts and dresses.

Matching separates will certainly make it easy to get dressed in the morning!
Many pattern companies offer sewing patterns with this versatility and include a range of garments that have been designed to be worn together, taking the guess work out of pairing up tops and bottoms.

Simplicity 1466 shows on the envelope just how a simple top and skirt and/or cropped trousers can look great in the same fabric.

Perfect for those of us who like the idea of wearing a dress but prefer the fit of a top and skirt. Creating separates also offer more of a choice for every day wear as you can mix and match with other key pieces in your wardrobe.

If you’re like me and quite like the idea of making and wearing a matching two-piece but the thought of a loud bold floral fabric can make you feel a bit of the frumpy side. Then why not opt for making the two pieces in a plain colour.

This new elegant trouser suit pattern from Vogue (V9092) is from their very easy to make range and also includes extra pattern pieces for bust sizes A,B,C and D plus some lovely detailing like a raised waistline, flap pockets and front side vents.

TIP: Just add a contrasting trim or embellishment. This can look equally as stylish but less of the ‘hey look at me feeling!”.

A two-piece pattern can also look stunning made in a textured fabric.

Simplicity 1255 (on the left) is one of the latest patterns and features knit tops, trousers, slim and flared skirts and the lovely lace-look knit fabric makes it look very feminine too.

Of course, there’s nothing to stop you mixing up two of your favourite top and bottom sewing patterns and making them into a matching outfit. By Hand London has shown its Victoria Blazer in a striking Flamingo patterned fabric and teamed it up with a mini pencil skirt.

If you can’t find a fabric pattern you like – you could always make up your own. By Hand London is one company that offers sewers the chance to have fabric custom made.
Click here to find out more.