Skirt - By Hand London Charlotte; size US 8
Bolero - Simplicity 1665; size 10
Fabric: Dear Stella home dec fabric from Fabric Place Basement (also available here)
Tee: Alternative Apparel
Maybe it was the sudden turn in the temperatures recently that had me feeling like it was finally summer, but I finished my sailboat suit! In case you haven't been following along, the idea came to me back in April when I saw the promo pics of the BHL Victoria Blazer. I immediately coveted a cropped version of the blazer paired with the Charlotte skirt made up in a flamingo print cotton. Since "impatient" is my middle name, I couldn't wait for the pattern to be released and ran out to find a pattern similar to the blazer as well as a funky fabric to pair with it. What could be more appropriate to wear in New England than sailboats???
When it came down to it, I was essentially looking for a bolero-type jacket pattern for my suit. What I love about Simplicity 1665 is the interesting two-piece neckband and hem band that makes the bolero more special than other simple cropped jackets. It was really easy to sew and I could have finished it a lot faster had I not been distracted by other sewing projects - I swear I'm a magpie when it comes to sewing; something else catches my eye and I end up jumping to another project mid-construction.
For a fun pop of color, I used green bias tape for a Hong Kong seam finish along most of the seams of the bolero since it's unlined - when there's a breeze, the inside of the jacket is visible. I was afraid that the bias tape would make the underarm/side seams a little bulky, so I just pinked them instead.
Actually, this was the second time I made the BHL Charlotte skirt; the first version I have yet to blog. From my first version, which I shortened to be a mini-skirt (it's a little too mini for my liking), I had an idea of how much to shorten the skirt so that I could get a length that wouldn't be too short to sit in. I have to admit: this still hikes up quite a bit when I sit. Technically, according to the pattern measurements, I should have cut out an 8 for the waist and a 6 for the hips. But what I like about the fit of the straight 8 skirt is that even though it's fitted, it's still roomy in the hips and quite comfortable to sit in because of the ease in the hips. There's a little bit of pooling of fabric in the abdomen, which wouldn't have been as present if I cut a 6 for the hips, but I don't notice it that much.
The waistband is a simple rectangle that overlaps in the back; I used a snap to attach the waistband piece together but it probably would have been more prudent to use two large hooks and eyes instead. Eh, it's what I had kicking around. Maybe in future renditions I'll interface the waistband to make it stand up a little better.
Seriously, BHL ladies, how is it that you created something so simple that fits so well?! I love me a high waisted skirt, and this is now my go-to pencil skirt pattern in my closet.
Seriously, this has been my favorite find to date at my local fabric haunt, Fabric Place Basement. I went in looking for fabric for a Sultry Sheath dress and as I wandered through some of the home dec aisles, I came across this sailboat print by Dear Stella that was too perfect to pass up. I worked with home dec fabric in the past for garments, (skirts I have yet to post, yeesh) and what I liked about this particular weave is the soft drape that wasn't like other stiff home dec fabrics. I threw a test swatch into the wash before I laundered the yardage and measured only minimal shrinkage. I'm thinking this isn't going to be an outfit that gets washed a lot, at least not the jacket, but I'm not too worried about it holding up in cold water in the machine (hang dry).
All in all, if you haven't made the Charlotte skirt, run over to byhandlondon.com and get a copy now! Those ladies are freakin' brilliant.