This Halloween, my lovely said to me, why don't you whip up something for the Halloween party? You can make a dress in a day or so, yeah? ... Paraphrasing here of course. But that was the general jist of the conversation.
Cue a trip to Spotlight where their Halloween fabric range was on special for $8.00 / m. Sign me up! Bought 4m in total - 2m for the skirt, 2m for the blouse. The fabric was pre-washed and then thrown in the dryer for ultimate shrinkage. I prepped the pattern at about 10.30pm and cut everything out. As the skirt is a collection of rectangles, I didn't cut the fabric but just did the ripping trick. If you have a rip-able fabric this is such a great and quick technique to get on grain rectangles.
While working on the outfit, he kept saying this looks like my shirt from London... You know the one? I couldn't remember the one. He kept describing it in detail and I truly had no recollection. Turns out the fabric was a perfect match! Look at him remembering exactly what his clothes are. This is a Vivien of Holloway shirt that was purchased in London April 2019! We were all matchy-matchy for the party. It was fun.
The skirt is a basic gathered skirt with side seam pockets and back lapped zipper. The blouse is the button back blouse hack of Simplicity 1692. I didn't use the little loopy ties for the neckline and cuffs. Ain't nobody got time for that.
Seriously, I love this button back version of this pattern. I don't like side zippers at the best of times (especially with my shoulders) and invisible zips in side seams for tops is just plain dumb. Why make something so hard to put on with no give through the high bust / armpit to armpit section of the top? Silly. Button backs are great and the spacing of these tops mean I can get fully dressed myself. I'm a regular dressing wizard.
As a side note, I also put the grey ribbon on his hat along with a little mottled brown feather for Guys and Dolls in September 2019 - he played Sky Masterson. Grey suit, black hat with matching grey ribbon. Perfect.
The plan was that if I made separates then I might be able to split them up and get a bit more wear out of them. And so far, I have! All in all, a very successful hurried Halloween outfit.
Please see the success of separates below.
Blouse: Salme Patterns Kimono top in silk from Marrickville
Skirt: Self drafted pencil skirt
Blouse: Simplicity 1962
Gosh this is bright for me. I'm not usually one to pair bright colours with other bright colours. But I think I am sort of liking this combo? Maybe?
The blouse is me made from a vintage pattern, McCall 7265 that I bought on eBay a while back. I don't know the date of the pattern but I suspect late 40s / early 50s judging by the cover drawings. I made it in a 100% cotton from Spotlight in this mad floral print on a dark navy blue background.
It's a kimono sleeve / cut on sleeve with a little point cuff to finish it off. I have matching yellow seam binding on the inside of the cuff which no one will ever see. But I know it matches the yellow vintage buttons on the front. Yeah, I know the yellow buttons aren't the same yellow of the skirt. But the buttons match the yellow in the shirt print! Too many yellows for me to match.
Marked button placements on blouse patterns are never right for my torso. I never use them. My hot tip - try the blouse on, mark where the button should be at the bust line, and then sort of where the top button will be. Take off the blouse and then evenly space buttons from there. It's a MUCH easier method and suits my ratio better than the suggested spacings.
This skirt is a recent purchase from Dangerfield. It's a cotton broderie anglais with a full lining. So... no pockets. :( But it's cute and I dig the rich colour.
What do you think of the bolder colour combo?
Blouse: Made by me from McCall 7265
Earrings: Bow & Crossbones
Amy Appel from Poison Grrls does it again. Cute, effective, easy, top down, no seams perfection!
This top is part of the retro Pink Ladies Collection. It can be knit in short sleeve, 3/4 sleeve and long sleeve options. This is the long sleeve version and knitted in a Medium size. Honestly, I could have knit the arms a smidge longer and a touch wider... but it's okay!
The yarn is from an Etsy shop called Trichromat Yarns, local Aussie shop, hand dyed, in a colourway called 'Flying Nipples'. It was a gorgeous yarn to work with and excellently priced for something handmade. I absolutely would work with this yarn again. The colour is a stunning apricot/peach/pink that is a dream to wear in my mid century wardrobe! Sadly, the colourway is no longer available. But there are some other inspiration colours for sale.
I had some issues with the needle cable size for the lower arm section. I'm not great with magic loop method and didn't have DPN's in the right size. Drat! I bought a really short cable needle in the 3.25mm and just struggled through - some of the most joyless knitting I've ever done. A change in tension can seen on my right forearm. This is due to that change in needles. The second sleeve was better at that change point as I purposefully knitted at a looser tension.
As usual, I added an extra row in each decrease set of the body to spread them out a bit and extend the length. Good idea. It a comfortable tuck-in-or-out length. Check my Ravelry page if you want some more info about mods etc.
This knit makes me happy.
Top: Beauty School Top by Poison Grrls
Pants: Simplicity 3688 in a chocolate brown mechanical drill
Hair flower: eBay trawling depths
I did it! I wore a different me made thing for every day in May! Originally, I wasn't trying to have no repeats. Halfway into the month I thought... yeah... let's give it a red hot go.
Day 28: Vintage Vogue 8066 skirt from the 80s, sweater from the Salvos, and beret from high school, circa 2005. I love these autumnal colours together.
Day 29: Pink Gable Top by Jennifer Lauren Handmade. A great staple. Pants are from Hell Bunny. Why yes, they are pink matching brogues popping out there - from Windsor Smith years ago.
Day 30: First Fair Isle project with this little two colour cowl. Wore this to a site inspection and client visit in Melbourne - day trip! The cowl worked as a great pillow on the plane. This picture was taken on the way home waiting at domestic station.
Day 31: The final day. This is my first ever sweater made. It's from a vintage 1950s pattern. When I made this (while in NZ in 2012), I couldn't really purl properly. I made mistakes by doing the wrong stitch while working in stockinette. Mum had to unpick lots of little mistakes for me. The neckband was the first time I had ever done pick up and knit and I was terrified. Now it's one of my fave sweaters. It's gorgeous and classic. The neckline is really beautiful. The skirt is from eBay. The belt stolen from Mum makes a come back!
Knitter. Home seamstress. Dance Teacher.