Closet Case Carolyn Pajamas


Why did I wait so long to make these beautifully designed and drafted pajamas from Closet Case Patterns?

There is so much to love with the pattern. I think what I like best is all the attention to the balance and finish of each piece.


Sewing notes:

  • I sewed view B in size 8 (I’m 5′ 6.5″, bust 33.5″, waist 29″, hips 36″ at widest part across my upper thigh). The pattern site is kind enough to note that their model is 5’8″ and wearing a size 12. I wish more designers would give this information.
  • Fabric: Black/White Cotton/Lycra Poplin Shirting – Famous Dress Designer from Fabric Mart. Mystery, does anyone know the identity of the famous dress designer?
  • Since I used the cuff on the sleeve and pants, I constructed the top and bottom, except for the cuff, and then determined the length and fit for each.  I do recommend this – it would be a lot to ask of a pattern to simply fit everyone everywhere.
  • I like the appearance of piping, but not the fussiness of sewing it! I used 2″ wide bias strips instead, remnants from my recent Zadie jumpsuit. I love the color contrast against the black and white print. Fun stuff 🙂
  • Only change – I drafted a back neckline facing, rather than use the pattern approach. The facing enables easy and clean attachment of the collar, and it’s a simple addition.


More happiness:




I want more, and I’m looking for another large print in a similar substrate.

Great project, fantastic pattern. Ciao! Coco

Paper Theory Zadie Jumpsuit therapy…


This week I’ve been so taken up with meetings with my realtor, and today, photographers, for my house listing. Somehow I’ve managed to keeping sewing and playing with patterns.

I’m so in love with this pattern from Paper Theory:

line art

I’ve already worn my first version (here) so many times, it’s such an easy garment to wear. Throw it on and it works. This second version is (again) in a cotton/linen woven from Fabric Mart. The weight and hand are perfect for a jumpsuit. And it’s a pleasure to sew this fabric.

Pics follow, and they speak for themselves. Sewing notes – check out my first version, this one is the same. Except: After my post on the first version, I took up the hemline by 1.5″. I like the somewhat shorter length.



It’s so weird to take photos in the loft without all my usual things in place. It feels almost sterile! but I’ll admit it a lot easier to photograph against a white background rather then the Hot Moon paint of days past. My closets are crammed with pics and artwork that were removed for the staging and so on. But they’ll be back eventually.


IMHO a print fabric really works with this pattern. Just for fun (you know what that means), I’m cutting out another one in a larger print. I’m really not inclined to do it in a solid color. But…if I were to do it in a solid, it would be Kaufman Essex linen, not anything drapey or loose, such as silk, crepe, or satin (some of the suggested fabrics). Maybe a jacquard chambray. It needs some weight and structure in the fabric.


I look fairly put together, right? My house listing will be online on Friday, I’m kind of (very) excited about that.

Parting note: In the middle of all this, I’m being treated for a shortened/thickened sacrotuberous ligament in my left hip saddle. So painful, and my left leg is/was about 1/2″ shorter than my right leg. I’ve been limping, and my right knee was taking a beating. I’m having physical therapy twice a week now and doing my exercises every day. Cause? who knows…osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, scleroderma, age, a combination. My mom had this at about my age and did not seek any help at all. Eventually her spine collapsed in a J on her left hip, and she ended up 4″ shorter, with titanium rods in her spine and a short left leg that could not be fixed. I mention this because perhaps it will help someone else to make the decision to address a similar health issue. We need to help ourselves.

Bye for now – Coco

A little beauty diversion…


I might get older, but I’ll probably never quit loving makeup 🙂 I had to learn how to do a selfie with my phone for this post, but I’m getting there.

Truth – I’ve been researching makeup techniques for ‘mature’ skin and so on. Pinterest has been a great source of Youtube videos on the subject. And I think I’ve learned a lot!

So, today I was in Target for lampshades and visited the beauty aisle. I was looking for lots of new stuff based on what I’ve seen. This afternoon I decided to do one half of my face with the suggested techniques – and I have pics! What a difference.

front 1

These photos are untouched, so give me points for being brave, right? And I didn’t do any concealer on my nose, so my morphea lesions are visible.

I don’t mind getting older (I think it’s a blessing), and I accept that my skin is looser and so on with age. Plus I have telangiectasis and morphea on my face, everywhere in fact, from scleroderma. I really don’t try to cover them, because most concealers, if not all, just look so artificial. But I want to look alert, bright, happy, and healthy.

On to play with makeup!

Foundation – I’ve been using Neutrogena Hydro-Boost for a couple years. It’s light and hydrating, and doesn’t settle in wrinkles and lines. The thing I learned is to apply it as a concealer in a triangle rather than use concealers that create owl-eyes.





Foundation laid, I used an eyelid primer for the first time in my life. Wow – this is a great product. It lightens the entire area between eye and brow, and creates a wonderful surface for eyeshadow.


Applying shadow – I have typical hooded lids for my age, and the Youtube videos were so helpful. I want a neutral/nude look with contouring that lifts my eyes. I chose Elf’s Shadow, Brow and Liner Palette. All the colors are matte and very dense. A little goes a long way. Elf is a new product at Target, and apparently it’s pretty popular. I was looking for Boots No7 products, but no go. My Walgreens does carry Boots, an old love from when I was based in Brighton. Great quality and selection.

elf shadow

And a weakness or an asset: I only use brushes for eyeshadow and so on. I’ve tried many sponge applicators and just don’t like them. I do keep my brushes clean, it just takes a minute to soap, rinse, and set aside to dry.


Those eyebrows – I used to have very thick brows, and now I have the sparser brows typical of my age. I want those super pretty outlined and shaped brows that look so presumptuous and pretty. I got Revlon Brow Fantasy in dark blonde. It has gel/brush on one end, and pencil on the other. Fantastic. I applied the gel first, then the pencil, and I was able to draw just the brow I wanted. Whoopee1

brow gel

I don’t use mascara, it’s just too much of an irritant. And I have a similar aversion to lipstick. But I’ve found a way to overcome the latter. I line my lips with an NYX taupe brow pencil, and fill in with my creme blush! The result is matte, not heavy, in fact I don’t mind it at all.


That blush – it’s generally my last touch. If I feel that any areas of my face are too dry, I dab a little olive oil on them, and then I apply Revlon Insta-Blush, which is a cream blush stick. I follow Queen Elizabeth’s example and put it fairly high and outside on my face. No apples for me. Plus she has great makeup.


Ta da – one half done. This was fun! and now I’m going to cleanse my face with Roc Resurfacing Disks. I love this product, it simply leaves my skin so clean and supple. Daily item, and I included it in my daughter’s Christmas stocking 🙂

roc Ciao! Coco

side 1

Paper Theory Olya shirt version 2!


This is becoming a love story – I’m enjoying my first challis Olya so much that I quickly started work on a second one.

Delightful pattern, impeccable drafting:

collage pattern

Just to mix things up a bit (more), I chose a printed challis for this one. Yes, I spent ages matching the print and deciding which pattern and color elements should go where 🙂

Fabric: – beautiful selection of solid and print challis


I love the shirttail hem, it’s not exaggerated and just goes with the flow of the shirt.


Sewing notes, no changes from my first version, but a recap:

  • I drafted the size 8, with 1/2″ seam allowances instead of the included 3/8″ SA.
  • The sleeve:
    • I added 1/2″ to the length.
    • Instead of a buttoned cuff, I used a 2″ wide band, using the cuff pattern but sewn closed to width and attached.
    • I also gathered my sleeve into the band – no pleats.
  • The neckline and collar:
    • My front neckline, collar stand, and collar are drafted from the Named Saraste blouse pattern.
    • The collar is softer, larger, and about 1″ lower in front than the Olya pattern.


  • Once again, no front pockets! I simply closed the entire bodice seam.
  • I added 1″ to the width of the back lower bodice and gathered it into the yoke – no pleats.
  • Challis is fairly translucent, so I underlined the plackets, cuff, collar stand, and collar with white broadcloth to prevent print shadows. BTW, here’s a succinct and helpful guide to some potentially confusing sewing terms: interfacing, lining, interlining, and underlining.
  • The yoke is also faced in white broadcloth, same reasoning.


I love this shirt tucked into jeans!



An aside: I recently posted pics of a new dress on Instagram (you can click on the IGram icon in my sidebar). It’s my True Bias Nikko top/McCall 6559 combo (blog post here). And I received a wonderful compliment on the way into the grocery this morning 🙂


Ciao! Coco

Summer pants in Kaufman Essex linen


Back to my favorites – Vogue 8584 wide-leg pants paired with a delightful Robert Kaufman indigo Prairie Essex linen/cotton blend from Hawthorne Threads.

V8584 lines


Not only are they super easy to sew and wear, they’re also a perfect showpiece for my challis Paper Theory Olya Shirt (post here).


Sewing notes:

  • This is modified size 12 (I adjusted the crotch length and waist-to-hip fit last year).
  • No pockets! This print is two busy to add them as a design element.
  • I used a 2″ waistband fold, and a 2″ hem allowance.
  • Essex is only 43″ wide, and I used most of 3 yards. In a wider fabric, 55″ or more, I use 2.5 yards for these pants.

More pics…



I want more, the print has me jazzed! BTW, if you’re interested in Essex blend fabrics, check out Hawthorne Threads for a huge selection.

Bye for now, Coco