Katy: I used to consider sewing a solitary activity until I stumbled into Crafty Foxes Sewing Club at Grey’s Fabric and Notions. That was just under two years ago and now the ladies I met there have become my Boston family. Sarah, or Tall Sarah as we distinguish her from Sarah Grey (Shop Sarah), is one of the regulars along with Laney and I. We’ve shared everything from sewing tips to hot pink piping to mean co-worker tales. Sarah dosen’t have a blog herself, or at least not yet, so we invited her to to share some of her makes on our blog because now you’re family too. Take it away Tall Sarah!
First things first. While it is probably obvious to anyone who happens upon this blog, I want to confirm to you all that Katy and Laney are amazing. This smart, creative duo has talent by the bucketful, and is sweet and sassy to boot. They are the kind of friends that notice when you are having a stressful week and show up at your door with new lipstick and a box of wine. These are good people, y’all.
And speaking of amazing ladies, let’s talk about two more. The Charlotte skirt (from the talented ladies at By Hand London) you have, no doubt, met before. The other special lady featured here is my adorable bundle of fur, Layla. She was kind enough to join us for photos, matching outfit and all. And yes, tasty bribes were required. Please forgive the volume of gratuitous puppy shots you are about to encounter. It simply could not be helped.
Now, on to the sewing! I knew I wanted to blantantly copy take inspiration from the neon-embellished seersucker numbers that J.Crew featured this Spring. I had some navy and white cotton seersucker in my stash, and spied the perfect neon pink piping online at Harts Fabric. You may remember that this pink piping has already made an appearance in Laney’s gorgeous Iris Belladone.
I will not go into detail about the construction of the Charlotte skirt, because that has been covered, and lovely versions continue to pop up everywhere (including this adorable peplum version by Katy). Charlotte is a great pencil skirt pattern and goes together easily. And while it seems to fit everyone else like a glove, I, unfortunately, did have a few fit issues. In all honesty, my first attempt looked more marsupial than pencil, with a lot of extra fabric pooling around the front darts. Has anyone else had this problem? In the end, I had to change the dart length and placement and take out some of the fullness through the hips. I am pretty happy with the final result, especially how the pink piping pops against the seersucker down the side seams.
Speaking of side seam piping, I wanted to show you how I handled the bulkiness of the piping at the skirt hem. The piping was just too inflexible to fold over twice at the hem edge (even when I removed the cording and just had the pink fabric). Instead, I unpicked the side seams 1.5 inches on each side, then pulled the piping perpendicular to the seam line, and sewed right over that business and down to the bottom edge. When I clipped the piping even with the seam allowance on the inside, I was left with a nice, neat end to the piped edge on the outside, followed by an extra one and a half inches of just my seersucker fabric with no piping at all (I hope this is made more clear by the photos below). The fabric without piping was then simply folded up twice and hand stitched to make a lovely neat hem. I just sort of stumbled upon this solution and it worked like a charm…how do you gals handle this problem???
To complement my new skirt, I sewed up a navy peplum blouse using Vogue 8815—a pattern that has made its rounds through the Crafty Foxes sewing circle. I love this pattern, and have already made four versions. I am firmly on board with the peplum trend. Firmly. This time I opted to go sleeveless (I am in denial that Boston winter is blowing in) and changed the shape of the peplum by first lengthening by 3 inches overall, and then cutting a sassy little high-low swoop. The fabric is a navy ponte knit that is soft, stable and very easy to sew. It is a simple top, but I love how it turned out and can wear it with nearly everything in my closet. Win!
And just when you thought you’d seen enough blue for one day, check out Katy’s saucy ikat pants. Stay tuned for the full scoop on those soon. Trust me, there’s a story there and you do not want to miss it!
1.5 yd navy and white seersucker (similar here)
1.5 yd sky blue silk for lining
1.5 yd shockingly-neon-pink piping (Harts Fabric, here)
1 yd Navy ponte de roma knit (Harts Fabric, here)
Vogue 8815 peplum top pattern
Special thanks to Layla for being ridiculously cute and to Katy and Laney for giving me a little time on their blog. You gals are the best!