Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Astoria sweater + swishy skirt = new fave outfit

This rayon from Britex caught my eye, and I just couldn't shake it.  It's not a typical color palette or print for me, but I had to have it and I knew exactly what I'd make with it: a dirndl skirt.  A dirndl is not my favorite silhouette, but with this fabric, it all just felt like good fun for the summer.

The pattern for the skirt was self-drafted, using the Maritime Shorts waistband as a rough guide.  I getting old and fluffy about the mid-section, so I just can't handle a non-contoured waistband anymore.  The rest of the skirt is literally just two full-widths of the fabric (the back one cut in half for the center back seam/zipper).  
The lightweight rayon allowed for huge volumes of gathers without being very bulky, which makes the skirt extra swingy.  I accidentally walked in front of a fan at a dinner party and nearly had a "Marilyn moment".    But it's fun, and super light--perfect for summer.  
Of course there was only one top option in my wardrobe to wear with this circus-tent print of a skirt, and I didn't love it, so I bought the Astoria sweater pattern (Seamworks).  The slightly cropped, slightly vintage, and really simple design were a prefect match for the skirt.  Love the wide waistband and 3/4 sleeves! 
I made the top in a light-medium weight French terry (not sure where I got it), but I think it must be a blend because it has a lovely sheen to it.  
Applying what I've learned from other Seamwork/ Colette patterns, I made some alterations to the armscye and sleeve pieces, and took in the sides a smidge, but otherwise sewed a straight size 0.  While I would normally do a petite-adjustment in the bodice, I did not and the length was just perfect (For anyone taller than 5'1", you may want to lengthen the bodice a tad.)
I really love how the wide waistband angles out ever so slight at the hem.  It makes a world of difference keeping the top from creeping upward.  The neckband doesn't lay flat, but I think that adds to the vintage feel of the top.
I timed myself once I started and it took 50 minutes to sew--true to the claim that it's an hour project. (And even though I did it all just this morning, I cannot remember if that includes cutting time. Sheesh.)
While the sweater is a bit warm for out current "heat wave" in NorCal and in the depths of summer, it will be perfect for the other 340 days of the year.  I'm already scouting other rayons for more swishy skirts.

Pockets!  It's a little hit or miss with pocket height at the side seam when I'm drafting myself, but these are at a good level.  
So here's the problem with a skirt as "distinctive" (read: loud) as this: I can't wear it all the time!  Kind of a bummer.  I'll be wearing it as much as is socially acceptable :)  
** The fabric was purchased with an allowance from Britex, thereby enabling my addiction to fabric!  


  1. This is great! What a bright happy print. I can see why you want to wear it all the time.

  2. I always enjoy seeing what you create, being a petite person myself I like to see how patterns look on other petite women. Are you on Instagram? If so, I'd love to follow you there. Let me know, will you?