HELLO, I MADE A SEQUINED DRAGON TOP. Late last week, I found a full yard remnant of blue sequined stretch fabric at Jo-ann (of all unholy places). The quality is surprisingly great – not scratchy at all – and set me back a full $7.50. I thought about matching short sleeves, and instead opted for long, silk charmeuse in bright kelly green.
Then I added embroidered dragon appliques, because life is depressing.
The appliques were a family decision, because are they too much? Are they not enough? Can I wear this to dinner, even though I already made plans to go to a Chinese restaurant?
A single covered button in green velvet, because #luxury.
I wore it anyway, and the server noticed immediately and embarrassed me for eternity.
The sleeves and silhouette make this casual enough for jeans, but the sequins make it sequiny enough for everything else.
I really need to start making pants, you guys. GOODBYE.
HELLO, I MADE A STRETCHY, MIDI PENCIL SKIRT WITH EMBELLISHMENTS. “Midi” is a tough length on my 5’4″ frame, but everyone else is doing it, so ALLOW ME. The main benefit to this skirt is the s-t-r-e-t-c-h, of which I had none previous to this tootsie pop. Everything else in my closet has a very severe high waistline with no give whatsoever, which has been very inconvenient for this person with a multitude of tummy issues. I suffer for my art/vanity, but even martyrs need a break, and so LYCRA.
Lycra is also why that bright blue grosgrain ribbon is rippling across my hip, but I DO NOT CARE. The other stripes are navy velvet ribbon, and they can handle it. Hot.
The fabric … I can’t place. Historically, I mean. The pattern is SO fifties, but the fabric content is not – it’s a pretty heavy knit, but the stretch is too much for something actually that old. It’s probably from the nineties, when bossa nova and swing dancing were a thing. Whatever. I found it in the basement of a discount fabric outlet (THE Discount Textile Outlet in Chicago), and have had it stashed away for close to a decade (WHAT?!), so even if it was brand new at the time, it’s now ancient.
The white bits in the pattern are actually metallic silver.
And so are my legs, apparently.
The red lace roses are from a remnant I hand-dyed for a past collection. It feels like just enough pop without making this too fancy for t-shirts and leather jackets, which is all I want right now.
HELLO, I MADE THIS LIFE-CHANGING SATIN JACKET WITH APPLIQUÉD HAND AND SNAKE. I wore it on a plane, in hopes of getting a better seat, and it worked – the guy even gave me a better seat on my RETURN FLIGHT. I’m hopeful it leads to a better life all-around, but let’s face it, owning a jacket that feels you up with a beaded, sequined sparkle hand that’s wearing a giant ruby and emerald bracelet is already living your best life.
I made the jacket using a remnant of midnight silk satin that I’ve been saving for something special, and lined it in a really beautiful, mid-weight striped cotton left over from another project. The pattern is the same as the crocheted lace top, but wider through the hip, and from the waist down it’s backed in horsehair to keep that flare TAUT. I wasn’t even thinking about embellishment when I started this project, UNTIL I WAS THINKING ABOUT IT.
The chain is metal and heavy AF, and it makes me feel part majorette, part 1950’s dog walker. The buttons are black velvet baubles. The snake is a goddamn beaded snake.
It looks pretty great with high-waisted jeans – especially flares – and it’s completely perfect over the poet blouse. And when I finally make myself a maxi dress, it will be pretty great over that too.
The hand is definitely living the better life.
Obviously any time I get invited to “speak” somewhere, I’ll wear this jacket and consider my work half done.
HELLO, THIS MORNING I WOKE UP, SEWED A PAIR OF UNDIES AND TOOK A FEW PHOTOS. This particular pair was just a test run, and I’m thrilled to report that the fit is perfect, the fabric is light and buttery, they are comfy AF, and despite the granny silhouette, there is zero VPL.
No makeup or contacts today, and I didn’t comb my hair or anything, because these are just some undies, get over it.
Now that I know the pattern is just right, I can focus on gathering up colors and trimmings that won’t make me feel like an actual gran.
Now I need to make a full collection to replace the mess I’m currently hating. I’m thinking 10 granny, 10 hipster, 10 thong and a few solid cotton for sad days, and since these stitch together in no time, I’m hoping it doesn’t take me forever to accomplish all of this, my life’s goals. GOODBYE.
HELLO I MADE A FAUX ROMPER. Nothing says Chicago Summer 2017 like formal rompers – check that: formal off-the-shoulder rompers – and I, for one, am so tired of looking at them that I went and made myself a pretend romper with straps that constantly fall off of my shoulders. It’s more of a playsuit, if we’re being specific – a very tightly boned playsuit – just perfect for those super casual days when I don’t need a full range of motion nor do I mind fully exposing myself. I wore the shorts on vacation, and my Mother-in-Law declared them to be the shortest shorts she’d ever seen.
Okay, yes maybe.
I love the effortlessness of a tiny one-piece for summer, but we all know how actually very full of effort they are in practice, so I made two pieces. I’ll do what I want.
Always accidentally getting my feet chopped off in these photos.
A better jawline, please.
Matching plaids like a mother.
I can also throw this all in the washer and dryer. Take that, silky rompers of Chicago. GOODBYE.
HELLO I JUST COMPLETED TWO SUMMER VACATIONS, A COUPLE OF CRAZY DEADLINES, A WEEKEND AT PITCHFORK AND A BUNCH OF ‘WARDROBE MYSELF’ SEWING. Apologies for the delay. I’ve been dying to share these new pieces, but it can take literally all day for me to photograph, edit and write these posts – primarily because I have not one single clue how this fucking camera works, despite having owned it for something like seven years – and I also need an empty house, for obvious reasons (vanity). But, I’ve got a few new items, and hopefully I’ll be able to crank out some new content in the coming weeks.
HAVE I WON YOU BACK?
On a recent trip to the higher-end fabric store in town, I spotted shelves of crazy, crocheted curtain fabrics marked down to $1/yard. This stuff is literally meant to be cut and hung on a cafe curtain rod – no sewing required – and it’s almost always got hearts and cottages and windmills woven into the patterns. I dug through the bolts and found one that had the predictable country motif (i.e. trees and clouds and birds), but saw that if I manipulated the fabric just so … the pattern was completely transformed.
I quickly stitched up a top and skirt, both unlined and open in front – I guess to keep the fabric from looking too young. It can obviously be worn over a slip, but also over a brief and bra, or a bathing suit – I’ve worn the top a few times over my poet blouse, which fit really well and looked great.
My attempts at getting a shot of the top on its own were unsuccessful.
HELLO I MADE THESE LOUNGE PANTS. I’ve been super excited to get started on lounging pajamas, because, let’s face it, real luxury begins at home. And the pair of tasteless, jersey sad pants from Target that I’ve been wearing for the last three years were SHAMEFUL. True story: I actually felt sorry for my husband every time I wore them. Now I’m gliding around the house like a goddamn boss bitch in drape-y emerald green velvet. NO MORE APOLOGIES.
I made ties, so the waistband can be cinched or relaxed, as needed, and added pintucked pleats for a little interest. The fabric is beyond soft and stretchy and can be thrown in the washer and dryer, so they’re comfy and easy, but NOT ugly as sin. You really can have it all! I’m wearing them right now, and life is glorious.
Wardrobe|Myself items completed:
Blue velvet top (+ 1 pincushion)
Green velvet lounge pants
I also made the top (for New Year’s Eve), but that’s a story for another time. GOODBYE.