A Festive Party Outfit – Two Ways

LaLinna SchnittgeflĆ¼ster and Sew Over It Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.com

LaLinna SchnittgeflĆ¼ster and Sew Over It Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.com
LaLinna SchnittgeflĆ¼ster and Sew Over It Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.com

LaLinna SchnittgeflĆ¼ster and Sew Over It Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.com

LaLinna SchnittgeflĆ¼ster and Sew Over It Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.com
LaLinna SchnittgeflĆ¼ster and Sew Over It Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.com

LaLinna SchnittgeflĆ¼ster and Sew Over It Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.com

Classy Comfort

Happy New Year, everyone! Hope you all had a great start into the new year. In Germany we say ‘Have a great Rutsch‘, whishing you a lovely skid into the new year… I’m starting 2018 by sharing my Christmas and NYE outfit. I sincerely hope you guys are not too tired of hearing about holiday outfits by now!

Isn’t this a beautiful combination of patterns? Before I get into too much self-praise, let me tell you how this outfit came together.

Last December I was approached by the lovely folks over at Stoffe.de (also known as myfabrics.co.uk) offering to sponsor my holiday outfit. Yup, December and I didn’t already have one. I’m a classic last-minute sewer, so I had neither an outfit nor plans for one (yet).

I wanted to create a festive look that would work both for Christmas and New Years Eve. But how to do formal and casual in one?

I went for quite festive fabrics, combined with a more minimalist and casual cut. Well, you know I love my pencil skirts for every occasion. They can be worn two ways – top tucked in or left out. It creates two very different looks.

I paired it with a jumper pattern – mostly for comfort (and to have enough room for all the holiday meals).Ā  I’ve followed the newly arisen velvet craze and wasn’t too big a fan at first. Velvet can look outdated very, very quickly. But I thought I’d challenge myself a little and use fabrics I hadn’t used before: animal print plus velvet. If this isn’t stepping out of your comfort zone, then I don’t know what is.

LaLinna SchnittgeflĆ¼ster and Sew Over It Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.com

LaLinna SchnittgeflĆ¼ster and Sew Over It Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.com
LaLinna SchnittgeflĆ¼ster and Sew Over It Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.com

A Pattern Dream Team

Let’s get into all the details, right? Pattern-wise I combined an old love with a new one! My beloved, fitted-to-deathĀ  Ultimate Pencil Skirt pattern by SEW OVER IT, which I loooove to pieces. I stopped keeping track of how many I made so far. Roughly ten, I guess. I suppose I couldĀ sew it in my sleep now. I won’t go into too much detail, as I’ve been gushing over this skirt for years now. Well, it’s a classic and therefore qualifies as perfect base for any two-piece outfit.

Since moving back to Germany, I slowly make my way around German sewing blogs and indie pattern companies. There are so many amazingly talented people out there, it’s unbelievable. I wish I had the time to follow more and try more patterns.

For this project, I tried the wonderful LaLinna jumper pattern by SCHNITTGEFLƜSTER (‘pattern whisperings’), who’s made it her goal to create super minimalist,Ā basic patterns for all sizes. Their patternsĀ range normal to plus size and are available as PDF-Download. They’re also very affordable and easy makes for beginners. As an advanced sewer, I had a lot of fun to use this cutĀ as a foundation to add some fun details. Man, they have just SO many gorgeous patterns to gush over, I bet from now on you’ll never hear the end of it. I see a whole SchnittgeflĆ¼ster year coming. Brace yourselves, I warned you.

LaLinna is perfect tucked in or casually worn over the skirt. The batwing-sleeves are very comfy, add to a beautiful drape and look quite elegant with narrow cuffs. I changed the neckline to a boat neckline and lengthened the cuffs to make them appear even narrower. The hemline drops down at the back, adding even more volume and creating a gorgeous silhouette. The jumper looks great worn over skinny jeans, too. I wouldn’t mix it with really wide-fitting trousers or A-line skirts, though.

LaLinna SchnittgeflĆ¼ster and Sew Over It Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.comLaLinna SchnittgeflĆ¼ster and Sew Over It Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.comLaLinna SchnittgeflĆ¼ster and Sew Over It Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.com

LaLinna SchnittgeflĆ¼ster and Sew Over It Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.com
LaLinna SchnittgeflĆ¼ster and Sew Over It Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.com

LaLinna SchnittgeflĆ¼ster and Sew Over It Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.com

Who Said Animal Print and Velvet Isn’t Cool?

Let’s talk about these fabrics now, shall we? I really went for something I haven’t tried before and picked a crushed stretch velvet in antique silverĀ (HERE‘s the link for you German folks) and a leopard print stretch jacquard in black (which appears to be out of stock, unfortunately!). Both fabrics are courtesy of Stoffe.de (also known to UK folks as myfabrics.co.uk).

Despite having heard many horror stories about sewing with velvet, this wasn’t one of them. The velvet sewed like a breeze and wasn’t sliding around at all. It’s got a very lovely soft texture with an elegant shine.

The leopard jacquard is perfect for sewing close-fitting skirts (or trousers) as it has a nice amount of stretch. I used a stretch lining fabricĀ (link for Stoffe.de) to go with it. The jacquard has a nice sheen and matches the velvet perfectly.

LaLinna SchnittgeflĆ¼ster and Sew Over It Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.com
LaLinna SchnittgeflĆ¼ster and Sew Over It Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.com

LaLinna SchnittgeflĆ¼ster and Sew Over It Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.com

So far so good, I’m VERY happy with this combo. I’ve worn the LaLinna jumper loads since the holidays, mostly with skinny jeans to work and can’t wait to rock that skirt again some time soon.

Did you make something for the holidays? Also, if you have some great pattern recommendations for me to try in 2018, please share!

xx

Charlie


Happy sewing!
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Ultimate Pencil Skirt: Faux Wrap Hack

Faux Wrap Skirt Hack by thisblogisnotforyou.comFaux Wrap Skirt Hack by thisblogisnotforyou.comFaux Wrap Skirt Hack by thisblogisnotforyou.comFaux Wrap Skirt Hack by thisblogisnotforyou.com

Faux Wrap Skirt Hack by thisblogisnotforyou.com
Faux Wrap Skirt Hack by thisblogisnotforyou.com

Faux Wrap Skirt Hack by thisblogisnotforyou.com

Faux Wrap Skirt Hack by thisblogisnotforyou.com
Faux Wrap Skirt Hack by thisblogisnotforyou.com

ANOTHER WEDDING OUTFIT

Finally I’m sharing this skirt with you! This is easily one of my favourite projects this year. Although I have to admit, that I actually finished this in 2015! I did not get around to wear or blog about it during the last winter.

Luckily, though, because when we got married in May, I needed an outfit for the registry office. I wouldn’t have wanted to wear something I wear all the time, but there wasn’t enough time to sew a whole new outfit amidst all the wedding dress making. I remembered I had this gorgeous pencil skirt number in my closet, patiently waiting for its first outing.

It’s chic but not over the top and matched our wedding colour scheme perfectly. It was only us two plus best man and maid of honor at the registry office, so a big gown would’ve been out of place.

So here it is!

PATTERN. To make this skirt, I basically hacked the SEW OVER IT Ultimate Pencil Skirt. As you know, I have a serious love affair with this pattern, I even based the skirt of my wedding dress on it. So now that I think about it, I got married twice in one weekend, both times wearing a hacked variation of the Ultimate Pencil Skirt. By looking at the skirt, the hack might seem to be quite complicated, which it is not!
I didn’t change the actual pattern, just added to it. The picture below might explain this a bit.

I added an extra layer to the front panel of the skirt and basted both layers together within the seam allowance before sewing front and back together as described in the pattern instructions. To create the asymmetrical faux wrap layer, I traced the front panel and marked the asymmetrical line down the front. It extends the original hem by about 5cm. At the top it sits on the natural waist, so slightly lower than the original pattern piece. I omitted the left front dart. I also added a 5cm hem allowance. Before basting both layers together, I needed to finish all edges of the faux wrap piece. I hemmed it and finished the top with a very narrow waistband. I made holes with a hole punch and eyelets, then sewed on the buckle. (Make sure the waistband is narrow enough to fit through!) After all these steps, I pinned it onto the front panel and constructed the skirt following the original pattern.

Faux Wrap Skirt Hack by thisblogisnotforyou.comFaux Wrap Skirt Hack by thisblogisnotforyou.com

Faux Wrap Skirt Hack by thisblogisnotforyou.com
Faux Wrap Skirt Hack by thisblogisnotforyou.com

FABRIC. The fabric got a nice stretch to it, so the skirt is super comfy to wear. For those of you wondering where I got the fabric I have to admit that I’m not entirely sure! It’s a gorgeous floral jaquard which I probably bought in our local fabric store near Munich. I think I remember running home from the fabric store with this beauty and diving into the project at once. I love that skirt so much! I even added a matching lining.

I tested wearing this skirt with some of my warmer sweaters which looked great. So it’ll definitely get some more wear this season!
Faux Wrap Skirt Hack by thisblogisnotforyou.comFaux Wrap Skirt Hack by thisblogisnotforyou.com

WILL I MAKE IT AGAIN? Oh, yes! Definitely! This was such an easy and effective hack! No fitting or muslining required, because I can make this skirt in my sleep by now. It took a bit longer, but it was fun changing up the routine a bit. It’s interesting to look at once you notice that the belt is just decorative.

I might choose a plain colour fabric next time, because I do feel a bit overdressed in this skirt for wearing it to work.

What do you think? Are you making one yourself?

xx

Charlie


Happy sewing!
ā™„

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Chiffon maxi skirt & matching top

chiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.com (Click through for more pics & info)chiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.comchiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.comĀ BELLA SARDEGNA

Ciao! We’ve just come back from our amazing honeymoon trip to Italy/Sardinia. (Sorry, for the photo spam, but the Mr took so many pretty pictures, I just had to share!) Just before the trip I managed to squeeze in some selfish sewing time and make something for myĀ travel wardrobe. The dress I’m sharing today I made for my birthday, which was mostly spent strolling through town eating ice cream and reading at the beach – which is pretty muchĀ my definition of a perfect day.

It’s actually a maxi skirt and separate top combi and therefore was a great addition to my capsule vacation wardrobe. The fabric is a navy chiffon with a mint & pink bird print that I got ages ago at Walthamstow Market, London, in one of the dodgy shops at the far end of the market (a couple of houses from Saeed’s). It was onlyĀ ā€ŽĀ£1/m and I snatched up about 3 metres (140m wide).Ā chiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.comchiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.comchiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.com

IMG_7706
chiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.com

The pattern is more or less self-drafted. That’sĀ because I didn’t make a proper pattern for the skirt. It’s a maxi half circle skirt and I drew the pattern right onto the fabric, no paper pattern needed. I hadĀ 3 metresĀ of this fabric, which was just enough for a half-lined top and a half circle skirt. I would’ve needed almost twice as much for a fullĀ circle skirt, but the half circle looks great, too, and was much more practical to wear on a windy island. The skirt has a knee-length lining I made using some poly satin scraps.

I attached a straight waistband to the skirt and added a mint coloured invisible zip. It matches the print perfectly, but for some reason we forget to snap a pic showing the zip. The side seams are overlocked and I used a rolled hem foot to machine-roll the hem. As I wasn’t dealing with expensive silks and also had a pretty tight schedule I skipped the whole hand-rolled hem business this time. It’s ok to cheat sometimes, right? And to be fair, it looks so pretty and even, I probably wouldn’t have achieved similar results by handsewing.

The top is from the Sew Over It Vintage book and it’s the first garment I made using the book. I drafted the bodice block as described in the book (same as the Anita Tie Top) and shortened it into a crop top. I used two layers of fabric for the bodice front, so that the back is pretty much see-through, but the front not so much. As I spent most of my time at work and not the beach, some decency doesn’t hurt, right?

The shoulder and side seams of the top are finished with french seams and the armholes are bias-bound. I overlocked and machine sewed the hem. The top was really super quick and easy to draft, cut and sew, just one of these happy projects I need every once in a while to keep my sewing mojo going.
chiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.comchiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.comchiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.comchiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.com

chiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.com
chiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.com

chiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.comchiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.comchiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.comchiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.comchiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.com

chiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.com
chiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.com

chiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.comchiffon dress and top by Thisblogisnotforyou.com

I really love the skirt/top combination and wore it loads on holiday. The skirt looks also great with plain white or grey t-shirt and the crop top looks super cute paired with some high-waisted jeans.

Have you made something for your vacation wardrobe? Do you like sewing garments for a capsule wardrobe or do you love stand-out pieces when you go on holiday? I’d love to know!

Charlie


Happy sewing!
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Sew Over It pencil skirt with front zip

pencil skirt with front zip by thisblogisnotforyou.compencil skirt with front zip by thisblogisnotforyou.comOh hay!

After three months I finally came around to posting this neat little pencil skirt I made in December (or was it November?) last year. I’m way too much caught up in wedding planning and my new job, so I have to dig up last years projects (thankfully we took pictures already). On my sewing table there’s only the wedding dress at the moment. And it’s probably better if it stays like this.

Soo, this is another Sew Over It “Ultimate Pencil Skirt”. If you’ve been following This Blog for a while you know how much I dig this pattern. It might be even my favourite of all time. Over the last year I realised just how versatile it is, from full-on vintage to very modern you can make hundreds of very different looking skirts. I’ve made a mini as well as a faux wrap (yet to be blogged), a wool and also a jersey version.

pencil skirt with front zip by thisblogisnotforyou.com

pencil skirt with front zip by thisblogisnotforyou.com

This time I used the fabric included in the Ultimate Pencil Skirt Kit. It’s a gorgeous green/navy wool tartan, which I absolutely love. I used a very similar fabric for one of my very first sewing projects, a 50’s dress.

Instead of using the matching-colour invisible zip (incl. in the kit) I used a separating exposed zip in a contrast colour. Also, in the original pattern the zip is inserted in the centre back seam whereas I decided to insert it in the centre front. I simply added seam allowance to the centre front, not cutting it on fold.

It’s quite an eye-catcher, but I really really like it this way.

pencil skirt with front zip by thisblogisnotforyou.compencil skirt with front zip by thisblogisnotforyou.compencil skirt with front zip by thisblogisnotforyou.com

To match the zip, I used red thread for some topstitching at the side seams. I added two rows of red stitching, and two rows of black topstitching next to it (which is really hard to see in the pictures). It also really helps the side seams to lie nice and flat.pencil skirt with front zip by thisblogisnotforyou.compencil skirt with front zip by thisblogisnotforyou.com

I tried my best at pattern matching – cutting the fabric in a single layer really helps. I love how the tartan adds to the silhouette of the skirt.

I lined the skirt with royal blue satin. This is really simple – I just sewed it onto the facing, understitched the seam and machine-stitched the hem. I also cut it a lot shorter than the actual skirt, so I didn’t have to worry about the lining peeping out under the kick pleat. I sewed the lining to the zip by hand.

It’s so much better than my unlined pencil skirts. I even went back and lined some of them after that. Although the skirt usually stays in place as it is really fitted at the waist, it tends to crease a bit or clings to your tights. Also, I prefer to line wool garments as they’re not as itchy that way.
pencil skirt with front zip by thisblogisnotforyou.compencil skirt with front zip by thisblogisnotforyou.compencil skirt with front zip by thisblogisnotforyou.com

Will I make it again?Ā Oh yes! I love the front zip detail, it gives the retro shape a bit of an edgy look. Also it’s tooĀ cool to be able to pull the zipĀ all the way down – instant picnic blanket!

xx

Charlie


Happy sewing!
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Lottie Blouse Hack and Mini Pencil skirt

Lottie Blouse Hack and Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.comLottie Blouse Hack and Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.com

Lottie Blouse Hack and Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.comLottie Blouse Hack and Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.com

A PERFECT MATCH

Guess what? I’ve done it again (sorry, if you’re getting really bored by now)! I made YET ANOTHER Lottie Blouse version and my third Sew Over It classic pencil skirt so far. If you’re already screaming in your head, you should probably unfollow me, because one thing I can promise you: There will probably be more.

For this Lottie Blouse I didn’t alter the pattern much, but added a button placket. (If you want to learn how to do this, you can read the full tutorial in Love Sewing Magazine, Issue 18, pages 46-48, which is in stores now.)

Lottie Blouse Hack and Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.comLottie Blouse Hack and Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.comLottie Blouse Hack and Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.com

The Fabric:

The fabric is Verona Peachskin in emerald (Ā£10pm, www.fabricgodmother.co.uk) and was gifted to me for this particular project by Love Sewing Mag (all opinions are my own!). It’s got a lovely feel and drape to it, although it wasn’t as drapey as I thought it would be in the end. I’ve made all my other Lottie blouses from fabrics with very similar qualities, so I knew what to expect.

I won’t say much about the fit, you’ll find this information in the other Lottie posts (find them in the project gallery). In my last Lottie post, I noticed how the blouse was a bit too tight in the bust area after omitting the keyhole. Last time, I added a few extra cm at the centre front. This time I simply cut out the blouse one size larger than my usual size.

It fits much better around the bust and I have no problem with a gaping button placket or anything, but it’s a bit too wide at the shoulders (for my taste). The looser fitĀ was great to wear during the really hot weeks this summer, though.Ā Lottie Blouse Hack and Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.comLottie Blouse Hack and Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.com

I ‘ve matched the blouse with a me-made skirt. I used my go-to pencil skirt pattern (Sew Over It) which is my all-time favourite. I just cannot stop mentioning how flattering it is. I’m not a super confident person, but I always feel great when I wear my pencil skirts. That’s just a fact.

This time I made a mini version which hits above the knee. I simply shortened the pattern and omitted the kick-pleat.

The Fabric:

I bought the fabric during our Sew Brum meet-up in Birmingham last year. I can’t remember the name of the warehouse-like shop we went to (Barry something something? It’s called Barry’s Fabrics – Thanks, Charlotte!). It’s a jaquard jersey, a very stable knit, that I got forĀ Ā£5pm. I only got half a metre (no risk no fun!) and it was just enough to make this skirt.

It fits like a glove and is really comfy. It’s a bit short when I sit down, so I won’t be wearing it at work. I love that it’s black and white, because it goes really well with all my plain coloured tops.

Lottie Blouse Hack and Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.comLottie Blouse Hack and Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.comLottie Blouse Hack and Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.comLottie Blouse Hack and Pencil Skirt by thisblogisnotforyou.comPhoto-bombing dog!IMG_4826

The combination pussy bow blouse & pencil skirt is my absolute favourite outfit at the moment. The mini skirt is great for going out and the knee-length one is perfectĀ for work.

Oh, and for the very observantĀ readers: Yes, I cut my hair! It was quite long before but really damaged from all the dyeing, so I decided to get a LOB (I just very recently learned that this is what you call a long bob). So far I’m really happy with it.

I’m moving to Munich next week and hope to set up my new sewing corner soon!

xx

Charlie


Happy sewing!
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