Vintage flowery autumn shirt

I originally bought this fabric to make myself a nice pair of summer harem trousers, but before doing that I made other things and other projects seemed more fun and suddenly, summer was over. And, also suddenly, I realized I desperately need long sleeved shirts. Some time ago, I would go to the high-street and just buy some really cheap jersey things, but I’m trying really hard not to buy anything that was almost certainly made in not the most fair conditions. I’m not getting political, I have no idea where the fabric actually came from (and thus can’t climb on a high horse) and I don’t have the skills or money to completely stop shopping on the high street.

So I looked though my stash of fabric and found this flowery thing of perfect weight (it some sort of very light knit). I really love the fabric and am so happy it didn’t turn it into trousers, because in a blouse, it’s so 90sy/60sy vintagey fun. I found the pattern for the shirt in my stash of Burdas, in the February 2013 issue (I think it’s model 135).

I’m wearing the shirt with a knitted collar I once got in a swap and really adore. I wanted to break the whole floweriness of the main fabric with some solid black and thus made the cuffs and then wanted to add a collar, but decided I’m just going make some removal ones, because I couldn’t decide on a shape and wanted to keep my options open. (I still have to make some, but luckily I already own this one:))

I love how the shirt turned out and I really wanted a nice autumnal and thematic photo shoot. So we went to the Columbia road flower market and took some pictures along the way. London is so f*in beautiful in autumn and the flower market is such a cool place to visit, especially around 4PM, when everyone is selling 2 bunches of flowers for a fiver and I can actually afford lovely flowers:) This time, I even got some cabbage:)

Advertisements

The Shorts (dealing with my body image issues)

head

These aren’t average shorts. And I don’t want to point out that they were sewn by me or that I added awesome UT embroidery to them (that’s important too, but we’ll get to that later.) These are the first pair of short I have owned in 15 years (cycling shorts don’t count). And 15 years is more than a half of my life. I haven’t worn shorts since I was officially a child.

I always had issues with the way my body looks. My stomach was always too soft and too big. My hair is curly and I have no idea how to control it. The tops of my arms have developed wings of fat in the last 5 years. One of my boobs is significantly bigger than the other. There’s all the other hair all over my body that shouldn’t be there. But nothing has ever bothered me as much as my thighs and the whole cellulite thing surrounding them has.

All of this is about to change, however. For some time now, I’ve been actively working on not hating myself. Not on loving myself, love is a strong emotion, love is hard. I’m just trying not to stare at other women on the street and guess how much worse I’d look in the cute clothes they’re wearing. (I’m also trying not too look at other women, finding flaws in the way they look and feeling smug because I’m “smart” enough not to wear crop tops).

I still remember the day I read my first magazine for “female readers”. It was targeted towards very young teens, full of articles about first kisses and crushes and boy bands. But also, for whatever fucked up reason, full of articles about how to get rid of cellulite and how to hide it if you’re a lazy idiot who’s not trying hard enough to get rid of it. I was 12. I started secretly shaving and stopped wearing anything that my new bible deemed not appropriate for my body type. Then highschool and serious puberty started and I was suddenly to cool and alternative to read magazines like that. I also started wearing all kins of wired (showy) clothes, pretending I don’t care what other people think while in reality I was always careful that, even though the skirts were short, they were wide and long enough to cover the disgusting tops of my legs. I never even tried on shorts. Shorts were too dangerous.

From there, everything went down. I gained and gained weight although I was constantly dieting, trying to get back to the magical “bellow xy where I would be happy”. Then I started my first real job and in the span of a year gained more than 10 kg (20? pounds). After I quit that job almost 3 years ago I did manage to loose some of it, but my wii fit is still telling me every day that my BMI is just on the verge of too high.

I’m pretty healthy, despite the stats. I started running (and I think I’m sticking to it) and do yoga and even on a lazy day walk at least an hour, because the dog would go crazy if we wouldn’t exercise a bit. I’m probably rounder then the average beautiful hipster lady walking around the neighbourhood. But I also have some sewing skills and an amazing embroidery machine and the weather is hot. So fuck it. I’m going to wear some goddamn shorts. I’m displaying all of the dimples on my thighs and I will do my best not to care who sees them. And sometime in the future, when I’m completely OK with how I look, I’ll start with the learning to love myself thing. Baby steps.

2

The shorts are Burda Style 2/2013, model 129. I cut out size 44, because of all of the things I said above, but I could have probably gotten away with a 42. I had to take them in quite a bit in the waist (yay, compared to the rest of my body, my waist is perfect). I also lengthened them a bit, because I didn’t want short shorts. Just shorts are enough for now.

1

I wanted my first grown-up shorts to be special, so I embellished them with one of the new amazing Folklorico designs from Urban threads. I thought about maybe changing the shape of the pockets so they would actually follow the curve of the design, but decided against it, because the pockets aren’t that obvious anyway.

3

As usual, I had problems with inserting the invisible zip (that isn’t invisible now), broke a needle and was very happy I’m wearing glasses, because there was some potential for loosing an eye. But the zipper closes, the hem is actually very straight and I’m really happy with how they turned out. So if people stare at me in anyway, they’re not judging my cellulite, they’re jealous of the awesomeness of my shorts.

Jellyfish trousers

If there is a hell, I’m pretty sure it’s a shopping mall and all you do for eternity is search for a nice pair of well fitting trousers. The only time I ever got frustrated enough to cry in a dressing room was the last time I was buying jeans (and that was more then a year ago…). I’m short and my hips are approximately 8 H&M sizes larger then my waist.

I tried sewing a pair of trousers  just after I started experimenting with sewing clothes. That didn’t go that well and I didn’t try again for a long time. I’m also not that good at pattern adjustments (Ok, I actually never really tried or looked into it. I have to do that some day soon…) so I feared that sewing my own pair would result in a similarly ill-fitting way and I would cry even more, because all of the work I would have had put into it. There was also the issue of not wanting to wear clothes that are too unusual (if I sew, I usually get a bit carried away, as you can see in this project:)) in Maribor, because people would stare and make rude comments. And although I tried not to care, I did. But a few months of living in a hip area of east London erases all of your fears of looking ridiculous in public from your mind. Want to go to the Sunday market dressed in a zebra onesie? No one cares. So I finally got to courage and motivation to sew myself some trousers, because I knew I’ll wear them no matter how they look (they just have to fit).

Jellyfish

I had an eye on that 10/2010 #110 pattern since I bought that issue of Burda. Wide pants always fit in my thigh area, but I was told (or I read it somewhere) that short stubby people should never wear trousers like that. They obviously make you look even shorter and more ill proportioned. But I just don’t care anymore:)! I also had this fabric in my stash since forever, I don’t even remember what I bought it for (it was definitely not trousers, though:)).

I wanted to add an element of embroidery to my new awesome trousers, but didn’t know what. Then the Urban threads sale came along and I fell in love with that jellyfish. That whole thing did not work out as well as I hoped it would, but I should have foreseen that thin filigree lines won’t really stand out on this kind of material. I tried adding a nice lacy border at the waist, and that also didn’t really work, so I decided I’ll leave the other pant leg clean. We’ll just pretend that’s how it was meant to be from this moment on:)

embroidery

I didn’t really read the instructions in the magazines, because they were long and in German, so I kind of winged the whole process of sewing them together. I did watch a few youtube videos on how to sew a fly zip front and all of them were really useful (I don’t know why I don’t use youtube tutorials more often…). I will not show you any close-ups of any parts of the trousers because there are sooo many obvious mistakes, but I still really like them. They f-n fit! Yes, they have a ridiculously high waist, but it’s not too wide. They are a bit itchy (wool, doh), but they are wide enough to comfortably wear some leggings under them. All in all, they are infinitely better than store bought pair I ever owned, and I’m going to make many many more of them:)

pockets!

I have to add a button in front, but I’m still deciding on how exactly I’m going to execute that 🙂

And now a question for you, potential reader… Have you ever sewed trousers? Any patterns or tutorials you’d recommend?