08 November 2013

Sew All 26: J

Sometimes I love the stories behind the letter of the week more than what I make.  This was one of those weeks.
Don't get me wrong, I love how this turned out and I adore how much Olive feels so fancy in it, but let me tell you how it came about.  I was planning on doing a jacket.  We had a bit of a cold snap and Clover's hand-me-down was pretty sad.  I had the fabric picked out, and had pinned something I planned on recreating, but I just didn't have the motivation to execute.  
Meanwhile, we had plans to take Ryan's mom out for a surprise birthday date to see The Piano Guys (google, enjoy, and you're welcome if you haven't heard of them).  We made the offer to the older 3 girls that they could come with us if they wanted.  Only Olive took us up on it.
It was Wednesday evening and I had promised Olive I'd make her something special to wear so we could be fancy together (I wore Project Sewn Little Black Dress), but I had yet to come up with what to make, let alone start on it.  I happened to mention to my instagram friend @mackinink who lives in Jakarta that I wish I knew what the fashion of Jakarta was so I could use it for J week.  She responded: Batik!  From daily to formal, it's batik.  The high end items are line like whoa..so intricate.  All the stuff you don't see is meticulous.
I knew I had four black and white batik pieces in my stash that would do quite nicely.  So Thursday afternoon, I pulled out an old black stretch velvet maternity skirt, I believe the last remaining maternity item I own (and I didn't know I still had it) plus a similar skirt from my grandma and transformed them into a long gown for Olive.  She was at school while I made it, so I guessed on the whole thing, which means she will be able to get a couple of good years out of it.  It's a self drafted empire waist, but after cutting the sleeves, there wasn't a spot without a seam for the top bodice, so I cut it out with two seams that look like princess seams.  AND if you haven't used a double needle on knit, you are missing out on the perfect way to finish those necklines and hems.  Tutorial?  Here you go.
The should piece is just folded in half lengthwise, stitched and turned right side out.  I only had one yard of this pattern (Olive loves polka-dots) so it didn't reach the floor, which is what I wanted, so I added some Asian-esque fabric in yellow (Olive's favorite color) to extend it.  I made two pleats in the center and stitched it to the shoulder of the dress. Oh, and as I was sewing up a little tie for her bun, she asked if I was making gloves.  Luckily, I found some of mine that matched perfectly.  Quite the little lady.

We had a marvelous evening. I told Ryan I haven't laughed that hard since I can remember (and at a piano concert, no less) and he responded, yeah, you really got into it.  ;)  Happy weekend! We'll see you back here Monday for K week!

18 comments:

  1. I am so "J"-ealous, this is adorable!!! :o)

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  2. What an elegant outfit. So simple yet stunning results. Love the piano guys too! How fun it would be to see them live.

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    1. It was SO delightful!! I would recommend seeing them to anyone, so refreshing to not worry about appropriateness for young children.

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  3. Wow! Way to whip something up! Very cute!

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  4. The Piano Guys are amazing! I walked down the aisle to one of their pieces!
    Olive looks lovely in this outfit. Having an outfit special made for you for a special occasion is a wonderful feeling, and you can tell that she loves the outfit in the photos.

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  5. How fun! I always love seeing what new creation you've come up with. You're so inspiring! Plus, I've been searching and trying to figure out how to create the neckline hem when using knits, so thank you! Once my classes are done for a couple of weeks in mid December, I'm excited to get into a few sewing projects again :)

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    1. Hooray for Christmas break sewing!!!

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  6. how pretty!!! What a great inspiration for the J week... Emily

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  7. I'm surprised Olive's the only one that took you up on that offer. Glad you had a great time and you resourcefully created a fancy dress. :)

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    1. I know! The other girls regretted not coming once they heard how amazing it was.

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  8. You always come up with something inspiring! Beautiful ensemble and beautiful girl! How cool that you got to see The Piano Guys in concert.

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  9. Olive looks so sophisticated and well traveled!
    -Julie

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    1. And she's an absolute delight to take places!

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