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Holiday! Celebrate!

September 1, 2011

We had so, so much fun on vacation, and I’m still glowing a bit.  No, not just the tan (which, despite first impressions, I actually do now have).  Glowing on the inside.  Sounds cheesy, but a little R & R did me right.  I’ve never considered myself a beachy kind of person, but maybe that’s because I never had a beach holiday.  Well, I did spend a month in Florida when I was a kid, but all holidays are fun then, and Florida is lame (don’t hate!).  Anyway, we totally lucked out weather-wise, both during our stay and on the trip home.  Just a few showers from hurricane Irene on our last full day, made it to Boston without a hitch, and Sunday was merely blustery in our neck of the ‘ville.

Oh, what’s that?  You don’t want to hear about ducks, bunnies, kayaking with dolphins, tooling around the beach on cruisers?  Not even about Lowcountry cuisine, Gullah goodness?  Fine.  Here are the clothes.

I made this little trio, starting with the skirt.  It’s from BWOF 5/2010, and came together so quickly.  I’ve had the IKEA linen for quite some time now, and think it was originally picked up with home dec in mind.  I am so glad I waited, because this skirt is far better than a pair of curtains!  Pockets!  Mushka likes that, because I can keep some training treats on me at all times.  The fabric was a bit see-through, so I lined it with muslin.  Also, I went back to an invisible zip for this one, and I’m really pleased with the installation.  The only thing I might adjust is the waistband.

That ominous grey sky is an impending shower, all we saw of Irene.

In the photos, I noticed that it may be a bit loose, in part due to the weight of the front gathered section.  Such frills don’t really suit my curves – it’s best to keep it simple – so maybe that’s why I’m extra-conscious of any fit issues here.  On the other hand, I don’t want it to be so snug a muffin top is created :)  In that vein, maybe I am a bit body-conscious?  Take this along with my last garment, and it seems that all I want is tight, tight, tight.  Not entirely true, but I suppose I just figure that because I’m curvy, not lanky, I can’t afford extra fabric weighing me down.

Anyway, has anyone else sewn this skirt?  If so, did you find the instructions for pocket placement odd?  When placed correctly, the piece they are sewn to on the inside kind of bunches underneath the main/outer skirt.  But the outer gathers hide this, so even if I messed up somewhere, no one will know the better.  Unless they’re reading this blog!

Pasty thing that I am, I wanted a new sun hat for this little holiday.  I’d fallen in love with this free Hot Patterns offering when it first passed in front of me, and was inspired by the skirt and some stash-busting.

Hindsight says I should have used aqua thread in the bobbin.

The outside is a lightweight denim (also seen here), cotton broadcloth for the trim, and an aqua stretchy twill for the lining.  Initially, I had merely interfaced the brim with medium weight fusible (more stash-busting), but it was looking a bit too floppy.  So I scrounged around my totes for some heavier, stiffer stabilizer to add to the interfacing.  Turned out just stiff enough for my liking, as it held up to light ocean breezes, but still rolled up in my carry-on.

(PS – the instructions left a little to be desired, but this is still a pretty quick pattern.  And, I finally jumped on the continuous bias strip bandwagon.  Game changer!)  I even mitred the corners of the band, something easy enough to do, but one of those things I would have not bothered to accomplish so neatly a few years ago.

The shorts were a last-minute idea.  As in, two nights before our trip.  Which is huge, because I sew slowly.  And, I don’t wear shorts.  But figured, heck, it’s holiday… nobody knows me and my not-so-perfect legs.  I used the same aqua stretch twill as the hat lining, and made a cute bias tape out of some paisley I’ve had since making my friend crib bumpers.

These shorts were from the same BWOF as the skirt, and were ridiculously easy to construct.  Of course, I had to go and make things difficult.  My markings for the elastic and grommets were a bit messed up.  The pattern pieces only show markings for one size, and although I noticed this in time, and re-marked my traced out pieces…  I went ahead and chalked in the incorrect pair anyway.  Totally unaware of this until after slicing through my buttonholes (in place of metal grommets), I said whatevs, and added a second set.  Oooh, look at that interesting design feature!  Ha!

Three washings, one 17-mile bike ride later, these whipped together shorts are still comfy.  And only slightly falling apart…  apparently I stitched the bias trim a little too close to the edge in a couple of spots, as the raw edge is starting to poke out.

I could hand stitch it back in, or simply make another pair, not rushed this time.  Honestly, for fast yet slow/handmade fashion, these probably held up better than a quick off-the-rack buy at, say, Target or H&M.  Take that!  No tears, no blood, and my own sweat.

I don’t think I’ve ever looked so coordinated in my life.  (Black doesn’t count.)  And hilariously enough, when we all walked down to the beach the first day, the three of us were straight out of some magazine spread.  Ketchup and mustard, as my bestie said (with a little pistachio thrown in).  Which is fitting, because back when we all lived together, our walls were painted in a food theme.  Shrimp, mac ‘n cheese, green grapes, chocolate, oranges.

Major besos to Ry as always, and Chris, who shot the sunny shorts series and the following yellow door triptych.  I know it’s probably overkill, but for photography’s sake, I can’t resist.  Love these.  (and it was my birthday week, so who can blame me.)

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7 Comments leave one →
  1. September 1, 2011 10:40 am

    Your creations are all so wonderful! Although I understand the sentiment of not feeling comfortable in frilly clothing, you look great in that skirt and the gathers in the front are very flattering. If we weren’t on the last leg of summer here, I’d be making that hat.

    • September 1, 2011 11:29 am

      Thanks, Lizz! I say go for the hat, or definitely do it next summer!!! I’m kinda bummed that I won’t get much more opportunity to wear it.

  2. Jill permalink
    September 1, 2011 12:39 pm

    You are adorable, really, very.

  3. Allison Swift permalink
    September 1, 2011 4:39 pm

    I have hat envy!

    • September 6, 2011 12:46 pm

      Allison!!! You’re becoming quite the milliner, so I’m certain you could stitch one up in about three minutes :)

  4. September 22, 2011 11:09 pm

    Gorgeous! Definitely worthy of summer favorites! What fun holiday (and hopefully every day!) pieces!

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