Art Deco Separates

My love affair with separates continues! And mostly it is thanks to the patterns from Sewaholic! Having skirt patterns pre-drafted to a pear shape is making my life so much easier! I have many pretty blouse patterns I’ve never made because finding commercially made skirts is so frustrating! I’ve tried making skirts too, but the all too often looked homemade. This is the year I change that trend.

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This is the Gabriola skirt. You might not recognize it because the pattern is for a maxi length skirt and its supposed to be made with a drapey fabric. But I like to make things my own, so I hacked a ton of length off the bottom and made it in denim. Rules? What rules?

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And because my goal is to make my skirts appear less homemade I put in an exposed metal zipper. It is not my best zipper installation of all time, but it looks pretty good. Then I top stitched every single seam. And I love the lines of the skirt! It reminds me so much of those 1920s and 1930s bias cut dresses!

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Here is where you can see the combination of denim and this front point isn’t perfect. But whatever. Most women seem to think leggings are appropriate to wear out on public, so I’ll forgive a few oddly draping spots in my skirts. Still way way way better than anything I’ve seen in a store in many many years.

And I’ve wanted a jean skirt for quite a while. Summer at my job is very very casual and heck even during the year a dark denim skirt wouldn’t be out of place. So I picked up this fabric at JoAnn’s on sale figuring I could use it for another Hollyburn skirt. But recently I’ve really enjoyed wearing skirts that fit closer through the hip. It seems more flattering to my shape. That’s when I decided to go for the Gabriola instead.

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The blouse is also new! It is Jennifer Lauren’s Afternoon Blouse and another lovely nod to retro shapes. The hardest part of this pattern is taping all the pieces together! Sigh, I love a printed pattern so much more than a pdf, but this pattern kept calling to me, so I took the plunge. So glad I did. Jennifer currently drafts her patterns for a D cup, so I cut a straight size 18 and it worked perfectly. Plenty of room in the cut on sleeves (so rare for me) and I’m happy with the fit for a casual summer blouse. The fabric is from the collection London Calling from Robert Kaufman. I’m pretty sure I bought it to make the girls something, but too bad. Mine now.

I’m tempted to make the dress version, but I can’t decide if it will just end up looking like a tent. I’d say I should try it for a weekend dress, but I have plenty of those already. I think I’ll ponder a little longer.

Really I like both of these pieces a lot and I know they will get plenty of use once our weather warms again (its only in the high 60s right now). I have some striped chambray set aside for another skirt and some Liberty of London yardage for another blouse. I’ll get to them eventually.

And hey! The outfit even gets a thumbs up from Charlie!

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Return to Retro

Once upon a time before I had two beautiful girls I would wear 1950s inspired dresses all the time. The fit and flare silhouette really suits my pear shape figure and so it was pretty easy to make dresses in that style and have them turn out well every time! Who doesn’t love a good swishy skirt?

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Lately I’ve felt the desire to return to my sewing roots and give the mid-century retro look another try. Dresses and skirts from the 1930s to the early 1960s are fantastic and feminine and everything I love in clothes.

So today I’m here to share a new version of the Sewaholic Hollyburn Skirt. It’s a favorite of sewing bloggers and I can see why! In fact I saw a vintage pattern that looked exactly like this pattern somewhere on the internet this week, but of course no I can’t think where. The fact that is it drafted for a pear shape is even better.

Edit: YES! I figured it out. I saw it on Tanya’s Instagram feed! It looks exactly like Marian Martin pattern 9488. I was only able to find one blog post with a good write up of the pattern. Looking at the pattern pieces, this is nearly identical to the Hollyburn.

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This version is a straight forward version B with the tabs at the waist and a knee length in a size 16. No alterations at all. I made a couple of these last summer too, but in the shorter length and I don’t like them as much. The longer length suits my life a little better.

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YAY! No sway back adjustment needed!

The fabric is the only fabric I buy at JoAnn’s on a regular basis. It’s their Linen Look in navy. A cotton and rayon blend that wrinkles like crazy, but it easy to work with and particularly easy to wear in our hot hot summers. Plus it is almost always on sale.

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Added bonus, the skirt looks perfect with my t-shirt from Mischief Made Me!* I’ve wanted to wear this shirt ever since I received it, but had no bottoms that coordinated. So happy to be able to wear my mermaids now that the weather is warm!

Now for your bonus mommy daughter matching outfit pictures including this week’s dance pose with Lu.

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I also bought yardage of 7oz 100% cotton dark denim. Trying to decide if I should do another Hollyburn or something different. Sound off if you have an opinion!

 

* I’m related to the owner of Mischief Made Me so she graciously gifted me this shirt. I love it though and would have happily bought it myself if she’d accept my money. This is an XL size and my bust is about 42 inches. Matching kids shirt is here.

Clothing Sisters

So confession time. My favorite part of having two girls…matching outfits. It is soooooo about the matching outfits when your girls are young and the parent is still mostly selecting their clothes. I live for holidays. My husband is not a huge fan of putting our girls in perfectly matching outfits, so we reached a compromise. Coordinating outfits.

For Christmas they had coordinating sparkling dresses I knitted. (This is seriously the best picture I have.)

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So as Easter approached I started searching for the best pattern and the best fabric to use. Ultimately I landed on the pattern Geranium Dress by Rae Hoekstra. If you’ve read pretty much any blog that features little girl’s clothing you have seen this pattern before. I’d say for good reason, because is it dead simple to make, classic, and easy to modify.

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For the fabric I settled on two prints from Nest by Free Spirit Fabric. The fabric is so lovely. Soft, easy to work with, and washed really really well.

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I did the ruffle trim on the sleeves for both, but DD1 has a dress and DD2 has a tunic. She’ll be trying to crawl soon and I know dresses are much less practical for that stage of baby-hood. Both outfits are fully lined. DD2’s tunic was pair with Rae’s pattern Big Butt Baby Pants that I shortened to bloomers. They’re trimmed with some sweet lace I purchased at a rummage sales more than a decade ago.

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Sadly I have no photos of both dresses together. DD1 was recovering from a stomach bug and DD2 only has short windows of time when she is willing to be photographed. Oh well. There’s always the next holiday.

Anyways, I really loved making these outfits. I love it a whole lot and seeing these photos is making me even more excited for the start of Kids Clothes Week! I wonder how many things I can crank out in 7 days? I’m hoping at least one school dress for DD1 and one more tunic/bloomer set for DD2.

Back to Work!

As I mentioned in the last post I have headed back to work full time. I cannot believe it has been 4 weeks already! I’ve sewn up 3 dresses and 3 skirts so far with plans for a few more as summer comes closer. I’ve share the first already, but here are a few more things I whipped up.

Double gauze is amazing. I bought a dress quantity of Cotton + Steel Bespoke double gauze because I was intrigued by how much people seems to love wearing this fabric. And while it was a bit difficult to sew due to the easily frayed edges and its ability to stretch along the curves, wearing my finished dress is like wearing pajamas to work. Two thumbs up. I picked this up from Westwood Acres which usually only has pre-cuts, but sometimes has yardage available too. It’s a very nice shop to order from as things ship quickly and the prices are very competitive with other small fabric businesses.

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And maybe it isn’t the most flattering dress I’ve ever made, but the Sewaholic Yaletown dress pattern was dead simple to make and the fit of the bodice is easy to fit with the amount of ease built into the pattern. Plus the cross front makes it very easy to breastfeed when I’m home or pump while I’m at work.

It also fit in easily with shoes and sweaters I already owned which is a big plus when you’re having to buy or make an entire new wardrobe. I snapped this picture when I was in the office this last week. Now I’m trying to decide if I have enough time to make a sleeveless spring version in time for Easter next week.

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Next up is a simple dirndl skirt I made with a print from Zoe Ingram for Robert Kaufman in the line Carried Away. It was a total impulse purchase from my local quilt shop and I also have some yardage of the feathers. But honestly I don’t like this skirt and I’ve never worn it aside from these pictures. I think I’ll cut it apart to make summer clothes for one of my daughters. Two yards is plenty for a skirt of dress for littles.

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Lastly I made a skirt using Sewaholic’s Hollyburn Skirt. And I’d like to say a big thank you to Sewaholic for printing patterns made for women with more of a pear shape. I was able to cut one size and have it fit right out of the envelope!

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I ironed this skirt that morning. Probably less than 20 minutes before these photos were taken, but it’s made from linen. Gloriously light and easy to wear but always wrinkled linen. And I have two small children who need lots of help doing everything. It is what it is. I’ve already made two of this pattern, so it’s on the back burner for now, but I’ll pull it back out eventually because it was so great to sew together.

And that is all for now. I’ve continued to sew up a storm so next time I should have at least one quilt to share and more clothing as well.

Thank you for reading along!