I bought this one from Macojero's Sewing Patterns, and I think it's going to turn out to be a workhorse. It's got four pattern pieces, not including the facings — the pockets are cut in one with the skirt. It needs barely 2 1/2 yards of fabric — a smidgen, compared to what I usually sew. I can usually piece together 2 1/2 yards out of scraps! (Okay, that's a slight exaggeration, but you know what I mean.) If I can get the fit right I could probably run up three or four of these in a couple of days, and if I pick some SOLID COLORS for a change, I could probably wear them for years. I have some nice old-gold wool crepe that should make up beautifully into this, and if I wanted to get fancy, I also have some bubblegum.jpgnk satin that would be really cute. (Although that last really isn't something you can wear over and over again …) A dress like this under a nice cardigan or little jacket (of which I have, again with the exaggeration, hundreds) can go anywhere and do anything.
It's even supposedly one of those "proportioned" patterns, with different bodice pieces for petite, medium, and tall sizes. I might measure the petite bodice and cut that one instead, as I'm so short-waisted.
I'm not sure, though, if I'll do the neck facings. I hate neck facings, they're so lumpy and bulky and need so much trimming and fussing. I might cut bias binding in the same fabric, or maybe line the whole bodice (I have ten yards of lining silk around here somewhere, might as well use it) instead. If I am careful about the zipper placement at the neck edge, I think bias binding is probably the way to go … it looks so much neater.
Old gold, dove gray (I have some nice heavy Italian cotton with a bit of stretch that I tried to make a Vogue DKNY pattern out of, a great pattern I'd made half-a-dozen times before and that for some reason I can't find online and am too lazy to scan (but let me just say it has a midriff band) but the combination of the pale gray and the very severe pattern lines made me look like the warden at a women's prison), and maybe even black — I have some nice black Italian cotton, too. I always buy black fabric and think "oh, I'll make a black skirt!" and then I either never do, or I never wear them when I do. (A plain black skirt is something you can always buy for $30 at Loehmann's.) And red. I have some red sitting around just begging to be made, like a puppy wanting a walk. Guess I better get cracking.