Friends. Friendships. Through the global world of 'Social Media' we are exposed to a variety of people from all walks of life, of which much has been written about the pros and cons of such.... with my little Social Media world connecting me to others creating 'friendships' bonded by our simple love of sewing and making..... that's a great big benefit in my life. No cons here!
Mary @pdxsquared on Instagram, and I couldn't be any more different. She is tall and lovely at 6', (I top out at 5'7"), loves to refashion all things, particularly garments picked up at thrift stores and turned into new garments, photo below. She teaches sewing classes/mending/refashions at a women's shelter, sews all things boxy, adores Ottobre patterns (we have this in common!) and enjoys sharing photos of her vast vintage pattern collection on IG, of which I have a meager few. She lives in the Pacific Northwest in the United States located on the other side of the country from my southern east coast South Carolina, but through Instagram we've 'known' and followed each other for years creating a sweet bond through the love of our common hobby.
Sometime October 2018, Mary posted a photo of her vintage pattern Simplicity 5882 and spoke of how she wished she could be a size 14 (bust 34) to sew the pattern and how she loved the jacket especially, but would never be making it. I loved the pattern and commented that I was a size 14 and would she consider allowing me to purchase this lovely pattern. Her immediate reply was to send it to me as a gift, with her joy to simply see it made. She included the loveliest of handwritten notes and some labels along with the pattern in her beautifully packaged parcel, below. So sweet and so special it was decided that this outfit would be my Easter 2019 outfit, as well as 'the special outfit' to wear to my daughter's graduation in May.
And then my life turned upside down. The skirt was completed in March a few days before the great illness hit. I lost 6 pounds in the first 3 days and by the time it was all said and done, lost so much weight, coupled with a huge shift in my body shape that the skirt actually could not be held up. It fell down my hips. I've lost my notes on the jacket but think it was completed around the same time and it swamped my now very thin, frail frame. Unwearable. Completely.
Until today. 8 months later..... needing to run some errands in town, looking at this beautiful jacket hanging on my dress form all this time.... thought how that would be a perfect Fall outfit to wear this day and wondered what it might look like on me now that I've gained most of the weight back. It fit! And fit perfectly!!! Oh Happy Day! That's why there's such a big smile in the first photo above. :)
The pattern envelope is dated 1965 and describes the skirt and jacket as: "Dart fitted skirt has waistband and side zipper closing..... Lined jacket has below elbow length two-piece raglan sleeves, collar and top-stitching trim". I was also thinking about making the sleeveless top with tie too, but with buttons down the back, thought it might not be too practical to get on and off. ;)
In this photo below you can see a little better the shape of the jacket against the skirt. Honestly the jacket still feels a little large on me and I may make a few tweaks in the shoulders and sleeve hems before wearing it again. Also a first for me was putting in this type of collar. It wasn't perfect.... but it wasn't too bad and I learned a new skill.
The pattern instructions have you line the jacket, but I chose to bind all seams in the hong kong method with the armscye seams enclosed seam binding. All the bias tape was made out of some lovely ivory bemberg type satin from the stash. Almost a silk feel.
The jacket fabric is upholstery fabric purchased from my local only-open-once-a-month textile outfit. It was washed and dried before cutting out and laundered beautifully. From the pattern envelope I thought the sleeves would be a closer fit.... and a little shorter.....
....with the overall jacket length shorter too. See the bulkiness in the shoulder areas. Thinking I might redo that part..... but also the overall largeness of the sleeves can be seen here too, below. Weird. I know it was a boxy jacket, but thought it'd be a closer fitting boxy jacket of sorts. I did not top-stitch anything as I didn't want to potentially mess anything up by getting off kilter with top-stitching. I do like the jacket, but am not sold on the fit for me.
The Skirt. I LOVE this skirt!!! This is the perfect skirt for my body shape and it WILL be made again. With pockets added. There are no pockets here.....
but there are 8 darts..... 4 in the front.....
.....and 4 longer ones in the back and it gives this pencil skirt the best shape.... though to tell you the truth, these are so long it gave me pause during construction as I was concerned it'd be too tight. Those 1950's - early 1960's women's shapes were oh-so-small back then but no worries, perfect fit for me after I adjusted all seam allowances to a mere 1/4" after cutting everything out at a 5/8" s.a.
Speaking of the darts..... I learned a new-to-me technique that has continued in my sewing skillset with finishing off a dart by stitching the dart tail inside the completed dartline. This is a Nancy Zieman technique...
.....and I wrote more about it and included a little video clip here. Super easy and fast with no hand-tying threads to lock your seam.
Before I cut this skirt out, I compared the pattern pieces to a recent Burda Skirt I'd made with the fit I liked. Burda Skirt 02/2017 #117 is a very similar fitting skirt, below.
Below, the Burda Skirt pieces are on top and it gave me confidence to sort of feel like I was handling 'fit' before cutting anything out. There were no adjustments made to this vintage skirt other than shortening the length and re-stitching at a 1/4" seam allowance. When I make it again, I may shave a little off the hips area as I'm a little more slimmer there. You can see the biggest difference in the two patterns in the back pattern piece underneath the pattern envelope below.
As you can tell by all the wrinkles, the skirt's fabric is 100% linen and was purchased years ago when we had a Hancock's Fabric Store in town. It is also fully lined with Bemberg lining fabric and a side invisible zip. I may shorten the skirt a little more at some time as the length felt a little 'frumpy-ish' today. Wearing it with the old Ottobre 100% linen top that I still love and wear.
And ya' know what.... when I put everything on this morning.... I swear I could feel Mary giving me a big hug......
....and I will think of her, and sweet social media friendships, every time it is worn.
Happy Sewing All!
Ohhhh, you can feel the happiness oozing out of the photos Lisa! I'm so glad you're back to your fighting weight and feeling good and what better way to celebrate than to wear a beautiful outfit like this.ReplyDelete
'Celebrate'.... I like that thought!! Thank you so much Diane!! :)Delete
Such a lovely and very attractive outfit! It still amazes me what wonderful people we meet on the Internet and how they can truly become good friends. A post full of happiness and cheer!ReplyDelete
Such as you dear Mama Pea!!! I thought of you yesterday as I got out your lovely gifted handmade Thanksgiving potholders sweet friend. :)Delete
Both you and the jacket are lovely, Lisa. I wonder if it would fit a bit snugger if you had lined it as directed. The jacket may have some extra room drafted in to account for the lining...if that makes sense.ReplyDelete
That's a good point Barbara. And the instructions also say shoulders pads could also be added.... of which I did not. Hmmmm....Delete
Love your blog post, Lisa! The online sewing community is the best and has inspired me in countless ways since I started my blog in 2011. Thanks for the dart tip as well 😊😊!ReplyDelete
Thank you so much Sarah! :)Delete
So happy to seeing you back to blogging and sharing your beautiful garments �� This outfit is a perfect pair and I especially love your jacket. Lovely shape and print.ReplyDelete
This is such a lovely post. I read your post on the dart technique and promptly forgot it, so I'm pleased you revisited that. I adore your whole outfit and it's so good that you fit into it again.ReplyDelete
Oh Lisa I am just blushing at all your kind words! We are so lucky to inhabit our kind social media world filled with makers and empathy. Seeing that PERFECT fitting skirt on you makes all my pattern hoarding worthwhile. I feel so much joy in sharing with you and hope you do feel my big hug from across the country as you show tremendous forebearance through illness and life changes. We will meet IRL some day and I look forward to it! xoxoxo MaryReplyDelete
I love the color of the jacket--perfect for fall! What a lovely post to read this morning as I sit and enjoy my hot tea. I'm thankful for social media to bring me closer to those who I share a passion of sewing with....but that's all LOL. A lot of cons with it, but non when it comes to bringing our group closer. I don't think I have ever lived even remotely close to anyone who sews.ReplyDelete