Is it Christmas yet? Maxi Alder

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The time between Halloween and Christmas is my favorite season. So of course I had to make a fun dress to wear!

Actually I searched everywhere for the fabric equivalent of the ugly Christmas sweater. Maybe I looked too soon, but I found this cute stripe pattern, complete with silver snowflakes, at Walmart.

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I just cut the Grainline Alder dress to a maxi length. And added a 1.25″ waistband, with elastic, for my first go at a Christmas dress.

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It took about 3 yards, but I bought 4, just enough to make a little something else…

Loving the holidays…Coco

V-neck Alder top in jersey knit

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It’s a beautiful cool south Florida morning! Only about 65Β°, and I’m actually cold in these pics πŸ™‚

Recently I made the Grainline Studio Alder as a v-neck top, two actually, in Brussels washer linen (post here and here). After wearing them, I realized that they’re a bit large, and the v-neck is a little wider than I like. Not to worry, I washed them a few times to shrink them, and all is well.

However – I decided to draft the pattern in a smaller size (8 instead of 10) and to sew it in cotton/lycra jersey. So brave… and a great result!

Sewing notes:

  • As before, I used the self-faced left side for the right side as well, eliminating the attached button band. I re-shaped the v-neckline to be more narrow and 1″ higher and drafted new facings.
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Before
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New neckline and smaller size
  • I can pull this over my head, so I just attached the buttons through both sides, with no buttonholes. Yes, I was avoiding the angst of sewing a buttonhole in a knit fabric!
  • To add some back interest, I added 2.5″ to the width of the lower back and gathered it into the yoke.

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  • The back yoke is unlined, which keeps the ‘weight’ of the fabric even from neck to hem and decreases bulk in the armhole binding.
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Top: Fabric Merchants cotton/lycra jersey, Fabric.com
  • My finished center back length is 26.5″.
  • And I didn’t used pockets on the front. I did cut them out and prep them, but they didn’t look right, they were just too heavy for this knit.

I’m loving the pants I’m wearing, McCalls 7634 (first post here). A little tattoo art for Halloween!

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Pants:Β Tattoo Tigers, Hearts, Roses jersey, Cali Fabrics

Speaking of Halloween, my cute Ashley in costume for the Halloween party she and Darrin host every year πŸ™‚

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Happy Halloween! Coco

Alder variation and cleaning the loft!

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Second post today. I’ve been in house-cleaning mode all day (I should be wearing a Lucille Ball head scarf), and I decided to take a break and get some photos of a blouse that’s been aging in the loft. So I can wear it πŸ™‚

I love the Grainline Alder dress, it has such a nice silhouette, and it’s easy to modify. For this blouse, I decided to create a fold-and-gather detail for the back. Back details on garments intrigue me. IMHO, something should be interesting both coming and going.

Itty bits: I split the back and drafted it to have a fold with gathers in a lower skirt.

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The fold is at the height of the bust dart and is 1″ deep. I added a couple inches to the bottom piece for the gathers.

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Love this look. Kind of Audrey Hepburn. I think it would be fantastic on a dress version.

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I wanted to take pics outside, but the rainy season persists. Wind, rain, but the garden and I are happy.

While doing all the terry cloth project clean-up, I realized I have more things to blog. I have had them hanging in the loft, and they’ve been neglected! Another day…

Bye for now – Coco

Linen blouse trifecta

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Fabric: Kaufman Brussers washer linen from Fabric.com

Before I got caught up in my recent kaftan, linen shift, and apron saga, I spent a few interesting days drafting a top for jeans. I’ve always loved a white blouse/jeans combo.

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Trifecta – I used three patterns! The sleeve is from the Allie Olson Highlands Wrap Dress, the front bodice from the V-neck variation of Grainline Studio’s Alder dress, and the back is from The Sewing Workshop Trio Top.

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Funky, right? Pics:

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The real challenge was the back because the Trio top is quite boxy and oversized. I made a copy of the back of the Alder dress and incorporated the Trio detail to fit. Then I cut out the pieces, added width to the skirt center back for the gathers, and drew everything again with seam allowances. A jigsaw puzzle πŸ™‚

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(Below, I moved just as the camera clicked. Aaargh)

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A kickback to the 70’s – I think I’d really like it in white cotton jersey as well.

Bye for now, Coco

Two Felix dresses and Sunday musing

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I feel very green this morning! I hustled outside to take some pics ahead of our daily rain (and it’s raining now, pouring), and I was amazed by the green cast on all my photos of this dress! BTW, it’s Sunday, so no fancy styling going on here. Except for flip flops, because my patio is a guava-hazard area πŸ™‚

The Grainline Felix dress continues to intrigue and please – I love it!

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This one is done in Kaufman Pickle yarn-dyed Essex linen from Fabric.com (here). Essex is 55% linen/45% cotton, so it shrinks and lints a bit. As with all my linens, this yardage was washed/dryed 3 times before I used it. And returned to the laundry again after I finished sewing it. Result – wonderful soft rumply linen. I do not press or iron my linen garments once they go into rotation. To me, they simply say ‘tropics’.

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As with all my Felix dresses, this is not lined. Sewing the Felix without lining is easy, and I posted my approach earlier (here), along with notes on my size choice, sewing tips, and adjustments.

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I love the front and back seaming detail and all the opportunities for topstitching to define the design.

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Unable to resist, I also sewed a version in black Kaufman Brussels Washer linen, again from Fabric.com. This blend is 55% linen/45% rayon.

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Total this summer: 4 Felix dresses.

Staying with the green theme, I’ve been harvesting strawberry guavas for a couple weeks, and, with a gallon in the freezer, I’m done. Our rainy season this year started 6 weeks earlier than usual, which resulted in incredible fruit on this tree and many others. The palm date spathes all over Weston have been beautiful. I actually had some removed from my Chinese fan palms because they are such prolific germinators.

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More from the haphazard section of my garden (that means I need to do some planting):

A volunteer papaya! Thank you, Ms. Squirrel.

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The sole marigold survivor from my casual broadcast of two packets of seeds.

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Loft construction area, a couple repeats: an Allie Olson Highlands Wrap Dress and a True Bias Yari Jumpsuit! Both in Kaufman linens.

I hope everyone is enjoying a nice weekend. Ciao! Coco