Tag Archive | stretch skirt

Creating a holiday wardrobe

I’m off to France for 2½ weeks next Thursday – I can’t wait! I’m trying to plan for two things, firstly I want to take a capsule-ish wardrobe, and secondly I want to take some sewing/knitting to be done there.

The holiday wardrobe doesn’t need to cover formal events, it’s going to be seaside and family visits. I’ll have access to a washing machine, so I can happily repeat wears. I’m a shocker for over-packing, so I’m trying to limit myself to 4 skirts, 5 tops and 3 dresses. I’m going for a blue based colour scheme, because this year I seem to be drawn to blues. However, in order to take the garments that I want to take, I do need to get down and make some of them. That’s ok, I’ve got a week, right? And any hand finishing can be a holiday craft project.

What I want to take

Skirts: grey birds, royal blue jersey, paisley leftovers, black denim
Tops: white dot shell top, watercolour floral shell top, mournful leopard, blue-grey t-shirt, black lace top
Dresses: Teal dress, royal blue & mint lace t-shirt dress, denim/lace jersey dress

Making stuff to take

I started last night with a royal blue jersey pull on skirt. I was using the lovely soft viscose jersey I got from FC Fabric Studio back in April.  This is another of my self-drafted numbers, mostly done on the overlocker, nothing special about it. I took trouble to make the elastic waistband nice and I used the mock-bank hem finish with my overlocker. And it’s got a lovely little “Handmade” charm inside the waistband to show me which is front & which is back.

A straightforward tube skirt


I’ll be honest, this project took considerably longer than it needed to, because the overlocker took a bit of umbrage about something, I don’t know what, and decided to break threads for no readily discernible reason. This meant proper re-threading from scratch. Which is fine, I totally know how to do that now, but it was a bit of a faff. And then it decided to break a needle. This was rather more of a learning experience. I had a spare, so no problems there, but this was a new thing to learn how to do, and for a while I got all fingers-and-thumbsy and couldn’t hold the needle *and* tighten the little screw both at the same time. But again it’s all fine, it got done, it was just time consuming. Incidentally, the broken needle pinged off quite a distance! I’m glad I wear glasses – if I didn’t I might be looking to invest in safety goggles!
I’ve got enough of this jersey left over, to make the dress I’ve got on the list.

While I was in the groove, I even got around to sewing a buttonhole and a button on the Grey Birds skirt waistband, last night, to replace the hook & bar that I first put in. This is something I’d been meaning to do for ages. So that’s another easy win. 

This means the skirts are all done! Hooray!

For the tops, I’ve got a lot to do if I’m going to take all the tops I want to take.

The Watercolour Floral top is under way. It’s nearly finished except for the hemming, which I will do by hand as a holiday project.

I’ve got a t-shirt to make, and I’m going to be using the Simple Sew Shannon Collection pattern for that. I’ve also got all the doings for a lace back top. I don’t have a pattern for this, although I think I’m going to use my shell top pattern as a starting point. I can’t use that exact technique, though, because of the lace element. It’s going to require a bit of thought and research. I’m quite excited to see how far I can take it!

And finally, the dresses… I need to make all of them! They will all be partially made, to be finished by hand while I’m away. The teal one is all ready with only sewing bias facings to be done on my hols. The other two will probably end up being self-drafted, on the fly!

I’ve also got to spend a bit of time this weekend on my next Simple Sew Blog Make, because I want it to be done before I go away. But I think I’ve got time for everything I’ve got planned, particularly as I’m leaving all the hand finishing as Holiday Sewing Projects. Which leads me to…

Holiday Sewing Projects

I know I’m lining up a fair bit of hand finishing for myself, but it will get done pretty quickly, I reckon, so I need more projects to work on. I’m going to take some knitting, but I suspect that will be the last thing I pick up, because sewing is much more my default crafting activity! Knitting is too slow.

I will take a couple of my plain t-shirts to embellish, for example there’s one that I started a while ago, that would handily fit well into my holiday capsule wardrobe, so it would make sense to take that one and get it finished.

I’ve also been researching a few haberdasheries, to do a bit of sewing sightseeing, especially for those days that aren’t so hot and sunshiny.

So that’s my plans for the next few weeks. Happy holidays! 

Here’s the next batch of MMM pics

Days 9 to 12

Days 9 to 12

Day 9 – This was the first day of fail. However, since I’d been in the office over the whole weekend, and had no chance to get any washing done, I just didn’t have a me-made top available. I’m not going to beat myself up over it. The top may be a boring old Primark t-shirt, but the skirt is me-made and it’s the one that I keep wearing, because it’s so gosh-darn easy to wear, but haven’t quite got around to blogging yet. However, I’m getting the information together below…. Also, washing did get done.

Day 10 – First day of the Ofsted Inspection. I’m wearing a top I refashioned a little while ago, but again, totally missed out on blogging, and the black denim skirt, which is a brilliant Old Faithful kind of a garment.

Day 11 – And we passed! Graded Good! Hooray and celebrations all round! I wore the Dress of Many Colours. And got comments on how summery and sunshiney it was, all day long!

Day 12 – No rest for the Wicked, all the work that I had to shove to one side because of the Inspection had to get finished in double quick time, because those deadlines hadn’t been eased, regardless of Ofsted. Wearing my You Mean I’m Wearing Orange?! skirt. Although, to be honest, since I made the Dress of Many Colours, I’ve worn orange much more than I ever thought I would when I included little hints of orange in the appliqués on this skirt. I also wore this new-ish top that is more properly introduced below.

So here’s some of that missing info…

The aubergine skirt

I made this just before going on holiday to Cairo, in February, except I never got around to hemming it, so I didn’t take it on holiday after all. It’s a very straightforward jersey pull-on skirt, self-drafted, based on an existing Marks & Spencer skirt. It really couldn’t have been easier – a basic skirt shape, slightly tapering, with extra length for a turned down elasticated waistband.

The fabric is a frankly rather cheap and nasty jersey, and it’s already pilling a bit, I’d only bought it as a try-out for jersey projects. But it’s a glorious colour, and super-comfortable, and I’ll keep wearing it for now.

This is the best image I've got of it so far, but it's bound to feature again this month...

This is the best image I’ve got of it so far, but it’s bound to feature again this month. Clicky for bigger.

There is a top in the course of completion, to match. However this might be rather too warm to wear in the summer, on account of it being nasty man-made fibres.

I’m half contemplating adding some sashiko style embroidery to both pieces, but only if I think it will work for both items, together and separately.

Stashwatch stats: The skirt failed to use up the whole piece of fabric, because I’d bought over 3 metres of it, as I recall! But it counts as one use towards the stash-score.

Next…

Black refashioned top

I refashioned an old stripy t-shirt, some time ago, because it had a polo neckline which I didn’t like, and I used the fabric from the polo neck to create a strip of binding, to edge the new neckline. Well I had tons of the binding left, so I used it to open up the neckline of another t-shirt, like so…

Refashioned t-shirt

Refashioned t-shirt

I finished it with a herringbone stitch, same as I’d done for the original stripy t-shirt.

And now a gratuitous close-up…

Neckline

Neckline

Stashwatch Stats: This refashion took place before the stashwatch came into being, so it sadly doesn’t count towards my planned refashions/upcycles.

The Pink Stretchy Floral Top

I got this fabric last year at Ditto in Brighton. It was in their remnants. It’s got a lovely soft feel and it’s such a fun print! In my opinion, you can never go wrong with a giant floral pattern.

I made this top to go to Egypt with, and you’ll be glad to hear I did wear it out there. I cobbled a pattern together, by copying another of my t-shirts and giving it a sort of cap sleeve. It’s not sophisticated, but I think it works, and it’s pretty. Having created something of a signature look with the herringbone stitch, I used it again, with a plain white jersey binding, on the neckline, the sleeves and the hem.

Floral top close-up

Floral top close-up

Cairo top

You can just about see the top underneath the costume pattern, from our Costume Sewing course in Cairo. I really must blog that soon, because it was fascinating.

Having gone to the trouble of doing the nice edging on the hem, I think it probably looks nicer tucked in, or at least, it does with a skirt. When I wear it with jeans or yoga pants, it’s long enough to be slightly tunic-y.

Stashwatch Stats: This used up the whole piece of fabric (which wasn’t big to start off with!)
Current tally – I’ve used 3/10 pieces of fabric, used *up* 1/5.

I think that catches everything up now.