Time and time again, I've mentioned that I'm not a shirt tucked in person. It's so rare for me to tuck and belt that I can probably count on one hand the number of times in a decade that that's happened so... then... what made me think I could successfully turn - with success being defined as suitable to my style - the t-shirt into a dress by adding a skirt.
When I started pinning and playing with the bits of shirt, I fell in love with the ragged edge. In my mind, it zig-zagged beautifully to the t-shirt and flowed graceful and effortlessly - say like Vogue 8685 - in an classic with a twist kind of way. Yes... well... hello Heidi. With the skirt pleated and pinned to the t-shirt, I looked like I was ready to hit the alps. It was so bad that I totally forgot to take a picture but trust me, that was not the look I was going for.
And then began the debate. The fabric starting jumping up and down - figuratively of course - and demanding to be a pencil skirt. My inner artist took up the cause whispering sweet somethings in my mind - you love pencil skirts Myrna, pencil skirts make you feel flirty and thin. I ignored her because pencil skirts are something I've done for years and years only the fabric kept jumping and the artist kept yammering and - sigh - to make them both happy, I wrapped the fabric around my body and yes, it looked interesting, even a pencil-skirt-with-a-twist-ish kind of interesting but really... I was hoping for something a little more edgy.
AND... that would mean the t-shirt needed to stand alone which in turn means coming up with a hem solution. Right now, it feels conservative which really is quite funny because back when I was a lot more conservative than I am now, this would have been nowhere near conservative. It would have been way out there and weird. I cut the collar off one of the men's shirts and wrapped it around one side of the neck and pleated the button band around the other side, stitched them in place, and cut away the t-shirt behind. MUCH more interesting than the failed version.
I'm sure it was this edge that had me thinking jagged for the skirt. After this picture, I zigzagged it to the neckline of the t-shirt. The collar is held in place with stitching along the edge of the collar stand underneath.
The sleeves were replaced with lace, three quarter length, with striped fabric from another of the shirts for the hemline. They should - ideally - be multi-seasonal.
I used the design wall to lay out the pieces of shirt and eventually added black to this mix both for more contrast and because I thought the piece wasn't going to be wide enough. It's plenty wide. WAY too wide. I definitely didn't need that much fabric on my hips which led to an interesting observation.
We have to - it's just part of enjoying fashion - try on different garments and play with new lines and shapes, and it's fun, only the older I get, the more I gravitate toward MY shapes. The challenge then becomes how to reinterpret those shapes in new ways. Pieced with surface design is a new way even though long straight pencil skirts have been one of my favourite style since high-school.
When I wear the skirt in this picture, I feel great, especially with higher heels. It's quite old. I made it twelve or fifteen years ago before I returned to sewing fashion full time and learned new things. Now, I'd shorten it slightly, peg the hem more, and wear a top with a softer hemline... which gives me something to think about since in all likelihood pencil skirt is the direction my inner artist, the demanding fabric, and I are headed in this morning. We'll see this afternoon. More on Monday.
Talk soon - Myrna
Grateful - the willingness to let go of an idea and move in a new direction, to not cling