Today's Pattern Story: Simplicity 2345

Blue: So that’s it?

White: I guess so.

Blue: Not what I was expecting. You?

White (sighing): Not really.

Blue: Should we move on to the next one?

White: I guess so. Who would have guessed auditioning male strippers would be so tedious?

Blue: Maybe we should just get a magician for Hildy’s bachelorette.


Pattern from Out of the Ashes.

More Autumnizing


Here’s another 9929 that’s undergone some autumnizing (autumnizing is not as drastic as winterizing). Also, I don’t think you can say “winterizing” when there are flowers clearly visible in the picture behind you …

How do I try to make a cotton seersucker dress autumn-appropriate? By adding a cardigan, knee socks, and boots. The boots are an ancient pair from J. Crew that were probably the luckiest purchase I ever made at the big thrift store at Lawrence and Kedzie in Chicago. (They were FIVE DOLLARS! For those of you keeping thrift store score scores at home). It helps that the dress is all dark colors, anyway.

“Seasonally-appropriate” for me seems to be way more about the colors and the fabric than the style of dress  … I don’t subscribe to that fashion-mag article of faith that you can take some frothy pale-mint chiffon-y dress that couldn’t be more “Easter-tide” if you wore it with fuzzy pink bunny ears, and wear it in October as long as you put wooly tights under it and a slouchy gray cardigan over it. But that’s probably just because I’m a cranky old person. Please vacate my greensward, etc. etc. And oddly, I don’t mind earth-tones in the spring and summer, if they’re in summer weights and shapes; it’s just sundress-style pastels and primary colors in winter that tweak my irk-ometer.

I’m hoping to get some sewing done over the Thanksgiving break: the plan is to make two or three more 9929s … but only ones suitable as party dresses. I have some shantung ready and waiting for colorblocking, some rainbow lamé (yes, rainbow lamé) and even (if I can find my safety goggles and a fume hood so I can cut into it) some Betabrands Disconium. Watch this space!

Autumn 9929

Autumn 9929

So the Vogue 9929s are continuing into the autumn, despite their sleeveless nature. I used to think sleeveless dresses in wintertime were really weird … and then I moved to California, where I am sitting sans this cardigan at my desk right now, after a warmish 30-minute bike ride into the office.

I figured I’d try a Vogue 9929 in a less-summery fabric when I saw a piece of this Liberty babycord on sale on eBay. I love Liberty babycord, and I love this pattern (which I believe is called Robin). But since there was just a little less than 2 yards of it, the 9929 was the only pattern I knew would work …

Liberty babycord is super, super soft but still hangs nicely. And the pile/wales of this corduroy are not so deep that you have to use a needleboard when pressing (which is good since I have no idea where mine is). I didn’t want to do self-fabric binding at the neck, because I thought the corduroy, as fine as it is, would still be too bulky, so it’s plain old Wrights bias tape, in olive green. The flags in this pattern are a purple-y mauve, marron, tan, pumpkin, and mustard, and a kind of smokey teal green (or greenish gray).

In keeping with the autumnal theme, I’m wearing this with mustard knee socks, oxblood Justin roper boots (a new purchase from Etsy!) and a kind of reddish-maroon-y J. Crew sweater. The socks are a bit weird in this picture — it looks like I’m wearing tights labeled “jaundice suntan” but in Real Life they are more mustard-y, I swear. Tights in a brighter yellow-mustard probably would have been a better choice, but I really don’t like wearing tights while biking. (My skirt gets all hung up on the tights and I spend the whole ride pulling it down, instead of watching out for oblivious minivans pulling out of driveways.)

I’m also wearing an olive-drab Swatch, which you can’t see because my hands are shoved deep into my pockets, as always.

This dress is so comfortable it looks like I’ll be wearing it (and making it) year-round! Hmmm, maybe a wool gabardine version …