Friday, June 18, 2010

Summer Outfit with pictures

Here's the whole outfit. Nice and summery. Read on for why this outfit is an epic fail...

The halter top was made using Butterick 6956, a 1950s pattern. I made it with the leftover fabric from my blue dress I made a few weeks ago. I made it when Andrew was out of town.

Here is a close-up; the neckline is crooked because my shoulder are on an angle.
Both pieces are failures, but I though I would share them anyways. The top is definitely meant for a 50s style figure, possibly with a girdle or something. I feel like a sausage in it, with the exception of the bust, which is super loose. It's not a great summer top if you have to wear a strapless bra with it. Ugh. Oh well, I only wasted money on the zipper for it.
Here's the whole outfit. It looks cute from a distance, but the comfort level is a negative 10. It is all waaaayyyy too tight, and none of the fabric has any stretch. Painful.
This is my pattern for the shorts. I hadn't made a modern McCalls yet, so I cut an 8, but the shorts are tragically tight.
But they look so cute! you say.
I had the old gaping waistband problem, so I added a dart. It is obviously off center, but by that point I knew these were a lost cause.

Ewww. Now do you see? Waaayyy too tight. Andrew was like "You can see your underwear." Ugh, obviously. Because the shorts want to burst open like a water balloon.

Here's the inside. I used a metal zip from a bag I picked up last summer at an estate sale. I cut out all my pieces with pinking shears, so that is how I finish seams. I am always amazed a people who actually finish their seams. Bleh. I'm not that patient. I'm the only one who'll see it, and I definitely would rather spend that time making a new project.

Anyways, the shorts cost about 3 bucks, so it's not the end of the world. I made them yesterday in about 2 hours, too, so I think I will just go back to Hancock, buy the same fabric and make them ever so slightly bigger. I really like the style, and it was my VERY FIRST SHORTS EVER! So be kind.

I do want to share my failures with you guys too. Not everything turns out nicely, but live and learn! Now I know how to make shorts, and my next version will be great!


  1. I love the shorts pattern, but yeah, perhaps not so good for strolling at the park lest people get the wrong idea lol!

    Good luck on the next pair!

    ~Kelli @ Smidgens

  2. You look so cute! It's a shame everything's so uncomfortable. I'm right there with you not enjoying wearing a strapless bra in summer. Ugh.

    Good luck on the next round 'o shorts!

  3. The shorts look great in the front. Please share how you modify the pattern for more rear room - I've been encountering that problem lately. Can't wait to see shorts version 2.0 - the perfectly fitting pair that you'll wear all summer, right? :)

  4. I sympathize with the uncomfort issue, that's too bad because this outfit looks so good! The top is shaped in such an elegant way, this is totally 50's. The shorts are definitely modern but so cute! Good luck with the next version, I'm sure it will be awesome :)

  5. I've been reading your blog for awhile, but after today's post, I feel like I need to leave my first comment.

    A big hat's off to you for being so open with these projects! It takes real courage to put your "mistakes" out to the world, and I applaud your doing so.

    As a new seamstress myself, it can be intimidating to visit sewing blogs and see all of these amazing projects all the time. I love to see that even experienced sewers can have projects they classify as Epic Fail. It truly encourages me to just keep sewing and to tackle more advanced projects - so thank you!

  6. You know...if you called them muslins, then they are not bad. Just go larger for the shorts and bigger in the waist on the top. The style of each is very flattering on you. I'd give them both another go!

  7. Too bad you're not comfortable, as it IS super cute from a distance! And very cool that you share your not-so-great projects.
    I never bother sharing my duds, mostly because I don't photoshoot them. Though I could take a pic of them wadded up in my trash, I suppose! :) And hey, at least you learned how to make them cute AND comfortable for next time..

  8. I like how you wrote this post, very funny and cute. Good luck with the new shorts!

  9. Wow! What an adorable outfit! Here's a thought - if you can face taking out and reworking a few seams, you can likely salvage these projects. Take out the side seams of the shorts. Don't take them out all the way up to the waistband, or all the way down to the hem. Now restitch but use up some of your seam allowance to create more garment and less seam allowance. By moving your seam 1/4", you will get a whole extra inch, and your shorts will be "fitted" instead if tight. Do the same with the side seams of your top. These are only slight alterations, and in the long run, might make all your hard work wearable and adorable, instead of adorable, but unwearable. BTW, I wish I had your cute figure!

  10. I really love your outfit, especially the shorts...what a shame it's not that comfortable :o( I'm impressed at how neat the inside of the shorts look with the use of pinking shears, I'm going to try it on my next project!

  11. OMG!!!! You are so talented... I love love love your blog, it's close to my heart because my Mom love to sew, she did work in a cloth factory for years, making all kind of clothes and coats for Sears and other big chains (this was in Mexico).... and can you believe I was never interested in sewing??? until now that I am far far away from my beautiful Mexico (live in NY) and my mom..... so I have in my garage sales/thrift stores list an entry for a sewing machine.
    I really enjoyed looking at the pics of your amazing creations....
    Have a wonderful weekend...


  12. Hello,

    I'm new to your blog and love it. I saw your shorts review on PR. Although your shorts were a little tight (I couldn't tell at first), I love the style and length on you. They're the perfect shorts for you. It's good you plan to remake them:) BTW, I love your top as well.


  13. Wow- you look so cute! What a shame about the shorts because they're lovely from the front!

  14. Shorts and pants are notoriously difficult things to sew! I have screwed up many times when it comes to constructing shorts. I'm working on a pair right now and had to force myself to make them up in a muslin first (which I hate doing!) just to be safe. I think the top is super-cute!

  15. what is the seam allowance on the top, it doesn't seem THAT tight, maybe if you let each seam out by .5cm that would give you an extra 6cm on the waist and then you could take in the bust seams? It may work.

    Good luck in any case

  16. I love that shorts. She is pretty too. Thanks for sharing.

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Thanks for your thoughts and feedback!