Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Summer Staples

With Summer in full swing, I knew it was time to pull out some fabric and get to work. A few pieces from last summer's wardrobe are still in rotation, but many of the tops have bitten the dust (as they were worn throughout Fall, Winter and Spring). 

My coral top and my black-and-white striped maxi skirt were the pieces I was most eager to replace. And here are their replacements!

The top was made from a coral cotton spandex and the skirt is a black stripe cotton spandex, both from Girl Charlee.

The maxi is a simple matter of two self-drafted identical pieces connected to a wide knit waistband. I've learned that I shouldn't serge that waistband seam because I have a tendency to alter my maxi skirts. Sure enough, after taking the above photograph, I decided that the skirt was too "wide," so I detached the waistband and made a few adjustments. Though to be quite honest, I don't serge any of my knit seams any more. It just seems to stretch them out, and it's extra work for fabrics that aren't going to fray anyway.

I drafted the pattern for the top from an existing Old Navy shirt I bought for $1 at my local charity shop. I love the drawstring neckline, and the shirt is surprisingly flattering! It also works really well under cardigans, making this a perfect layering pieces that serves as both a shirt and a "camisole." Oh, and the drawstring neckline provides adjustable modesty! 

This top is so easy to finish, because the neckline binding requires no fancy stretching. I hemmed the armholes and waist with a single row of slightly zig-zagged stitching, so there's no need for fancy equipment (beyond a stretch/ballpoint needle).

Oh, and I did realize while wearing the original shirt today that there should be a line of stitching about 1/4" from the neck edge of the drawstring casing -- I'll have to add that to my existing shirt, as I prefer the look.

From the one yard of coral fabric that I bought, I made this top, the straps for these sandals, and a pair of leggings for Rosa. Not bad for $6.50.

Since I already have the pattern drafted, I hope to share it soon as a free download -- as soon as I get it drawn up and scanned in, that is. Shucks, I guess this means I need to make another top so I can take pictures for a tutorial. Oh well, a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do, right? *wink*


  1. Shannon,

    Your new top design is lovely! I really like the drawstring neckline.


  2. Hey it's Nicole from Girl Charlee Fabrics. You new summer outfit looks fantastic! The drawstring neckline adds such a unique touch to a simple tee. Thanks for the link back!

    ~ Nicole and the Girl Charlee Team

    1. Nicole,

      Thanks for stopping by, and for your kind comment! I've had great experiences with Girl Charlee -- and will doubtless have more in the future. :-)



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