Every spring, just as the first flowers begin to grow and unfold in our beautiful neighborhood, something strongly lures me to botanical prints. So I took a closer look at Liberty of London’s latest “Flower Show” collection, and of course I fell so very deeply in love with this breathtaking print by British artist Mary Fedden…. because just wearing it immediately transports me to a world of bright and joyful days!
And although the pattern I used clearly is an ode to the fabulous Coco Chanel (oh, how I adore her for the iconic boy-meets-chic style that she initially achieved by altering men’s clothes for herself – so very rebellious!), my version is more or less inspired by another Parisian designer, the wonderful Alix Thomsen. To say that her padded jackets have always been a great inspiration of mine is putting it pretty mildly. I actually find myself dreaming of a spontaneous trip to Paris every now and then, just to peruse through all of her beautiful pieces in person. Oh, wouldn’t that be fabulous?
PATTERN: Coco by Schnittchen (a German independent pattern company)
FABRICS: Liberty “Abbey Pool” print tana lawn for the shell, black silk charmeuse for the lining, and Freudenberg #248 batting
MODIFICATIONS: There actually will be another short blog post coming up in a few days, in which I plan to describe all the necessary steps for altering the original pattern to a quilted jacket (including pictures of the inside and translations of the pattern).
THOUGHTS: There are so many little things I love about this jacket; it’s hard to decide where to start. First of all, the jacket is neatly fitted for a very feminine silhouette. And the quilting adds an incomparably soft texture, too. The three-quarter length sleeves cleverly consist of two pattern pieces. All in all, it’s a beautifully drafted pattern! And even though I would prefer to see some diagrams in the (German) instructions, I would most definitely recommend this versatile pattern to anyone in need of a timeless cardigan jacket! Especially if you’re planning on making a quilted version, as there is no need for the instructions anyway.
Oh yes, I firmly believe that a casual jacket is an everyday must-have – not only does it help to get the cold out, but it also helps to add structure to any outfit! And I just can’t wait for it to get softer and softer with every wear…
Happy spring, everyone… it’s a promising time of year!
Posted in Projects
Tagged Botanical Print, Clothing, Coco, Liberty Tana Lawn, Padded Jacket, Projects, Quilted Jacket, Schnittchen, Silk, Spring, Thomsen Inspired
Hello, dear reader!
I had no intention of abandoning this journal for more than two months (oh tell me, is it mid-March already?), but somehow my mind has been too restless after our very sudden decision to change our not-necessary-unhealthy-but-yet-improvable diet back in January. And as we eagerly tried (oh, and still try!) to navigate towards healthier eating habits – including extended food hunts and exciting kitchen adventures – there was little but no energy left for quiet sewing sessions. But today, I’m finally back to share my latest make with you.
I have a thing for contrasts in textures, even more so in monochromatic color schemes. That said, it was only a matter of time before this obsession would find its way into my handmade wardrobe. I decided to contrast a soft cotton-wool-cashmere knit with a fluid habotai silk, using Megan Nielsen’s admirable Briar sweater pattern. And, oh my… they pair so beautifully indeed! The drape of this little sweater is so luxurious. Lately, I can’t stop wearing navy blue, or even thinking about navy blue. I actually want to dress in navy blue, tone-on-tone, all day… everyday.
PATTERN: Briar Sweater by Megan Nielsen
FABRICS: Fine navy cotton-wool-cashmere knit and sheer navy habotai silk
MODIFICATIONS: I added a hidden button fastening to the silk back panel (a bit unnecessary after all), reduced the width of the neckline binding and made a few small changes to the pocket piece (because it’s woven).
THOUGHTS: It amazes me how the loveliness of Megan Nielsen’s patterns simply quadruples with every new launch (so true for all independent pattern designers lately, I simply cannot keep up!). And what I love most about the Briar pattern is that I can simply shrug this one on over denim and I don’t even have to think about it again. While sewing, I decided to treat the back and front panel as separate garments, so all raw edges were hemmed and finished separately. The shoulders might be a tiny little bit to wide, but I’ll just keep that in mind for next time.
I have to admit that I still have that lovely stack of fall fabrics sitting right next to my sewing machine. Yes, I should really get back to sewing very soon… but first I need to recover from a short trip we took to the snowy mountains of Austria, catching up with your beautiful creations!
Hope your week is turning out to be a good one!
Hello, dear reader!
Oh my, I could go on and on about the joys of simple silk blouses! They’re light, they’re soft and they’re smooth… and they’re so hard to take off! I’m still in desperate need of some simple everyday garments to fill the main gaps of my recently reorganized closet. I believe my new silk Tova blouse fits in just perfectly, because I love the ease of throwing on clothes that can be forgotten about once you’re in them (there is so much else to worry about, isn’t there?). This was my first attempt to sew silk, but it was relatively easy. Of course there is so much more to learn and improve… it’s far from perfect, but certainly a beginning. Because now I’m hopelessly in love with silk…
PATTERN: Tova by Wiksten
FABRICS: Cream crepe de chine silk
MODIFICATIONS: I went up a size and added a few details to make it more silk-appropriate (a hidden button placket, a curved hem, single button cuffs, and round edges on the collar)
THOUGHTS: Considering this is my first attempt to sew silk, I must say I’m pleased with the result! I just love the easy breezy look of the blouse. The only thing I would probably change next time is the collar (I’m thinking of small ties?), because it does look a little floppy… or maybe I should add another button?
Working with silk truly excites me! I’m in love with the different textures and the fine details. It’s definitely the kind of luxury I’d be willing to part with my pennies for…
Okay, it’s time for a warm glögg!