Thursday, October 14, 2010

I Been Holdin' Out On You All!

I been holdin' out on you all!  I was immediately taken with this silk blouse, worn as a vest, on Style Underdog a couple of months ago. I love Bev's style - it's the style i aspire to when i grow up.  (I'm pretty sure i'm older than Ms. Underdog, but she has kids and i don't. On the other hand, we do both have husbands, and.....hmm. In case mine reads this, best to stop now!)  I kept my eye out for suitable fabric, pounced on this coral peacock cotton lawn the minute i had cash in hand, and got to work.  I finished the blouse a couple of weeks ago and have worn it happily a few times since - but no blog pictures until now!!  Bad, bad blogger!

I wore this outfit for a day of dental fillings and errands (after a nap - that medicine just knocked me out!)
I got a little cotton lawn blouse at Target a few months ago, and it's reminded me of how much i love blouses, and how useful they are in my wardrobe. A flattering blouse brightens your face and can make a whole outfit - all the rest, the hair, makeup, jewelry, etc. can be simple while the style of the blouse kicks everything up a level.  It also provides a 'finish' that i generally rely on a jacket to provide.  But even a lightweight jacket can be too hot or fussy on some days, so a blouse fits the bill.

I had some really beautiful blouses in my early twenties that i made myself.  But when we opened trade with China, the wonderful cottons and silks from Egypt, Italy, and France were no longer 'working' from the finanacial angle.  Chinese fabrics, while nowhere as nice, were much much cheaper. Home apparel sewing fell out of fashion for a while there as well, and it was next to impossible to find any nice blouse fabrics.  Jackets, skirts, and pants can all be 'pulled off' when using quilting or decorating fabrics....but nice cotton blouses really only blossom when made of specific fabrics intended for that purpose.

 Thankfully, the past couple of years, and even more so this season, manufacturers are responding to the increasing popularity of home apparel sewing by producing some gorgeous blouse materials. I 
found this out by talking to the lady who helped me at Stone Mountain and Daughter when i was buying this fabric.I had noticed the difference in what was available, and i was very excited to learn manufacturers are focusing more on products for home apparel sewing. I guess it turns out i owe something of my style to Project Runway!

This pose reminded me so much of Sal at Already Pretty that i had to throw it in. The outfit with the capris was just a knocking around the house kind of day. I've had the sweater for years and loved the color and texture too much to throw it out, yet i never wore it. Then, i ran across a blogger (unfortunately i've forgotten who) who made a cardigan by just slicing up the front of a pullover.  I did the same thing and ta-da! I wear it open or belted, it's a lot of fun either way and nice and warm in the chilly days of winter.....if we ever have winter again.

So, my fellow bloggers, what are YOU holding out on us?

Blouse: own pattern, inspired by Style Underdog
Skirt: own design, inspired by some girls wander
Petticoat, Jacket, Ribbon Flower: own design
Earrings: liliswan on etsy
Necklace: Tail of the Yak, Berkeley, CA
Shoes: Ancient Maine Woods

sorry about the weird spaces - they've improved blogger again and it takes me a while to adjust....


  1. HA! Steph you crack me up. Are you suggesting a husband swap? Naughty girl! Your blouse is beautiful. It makes mine look like the runner-up. What's next?

  2. oh no, now i'm REALLY in trouble!! nah, i was just being unkind in suggesting that the care and feeding of husbands can be equated to that of small children.....meaning no offense to Mr. Underdog, who i am sure is utterly charming.

    as are you! have a great evening, steph

  3. I love that blouse - wow, I'm so impressed by your talent, Steph!

    Heh, I'm holding out on my REAL casual clothes - the crap I wear around the house (and once in a while run to the gas station in).

  4. Steffi is truly talented and has a big heart too. When it became necessary for me to become an adult and dress the part (get a real management job), she outfitted me with the most beautiful blouses you can imagine. Lots of my colleagues were envious of my blouses. And I wore them knowing they were made with love - and a LOT of talent. Thank you again, darlin'.

  5. Thanks, Sheila! ho ho ho ! you know you want to.....and if you ever did post a pic of yourself looking anything less than fab, the rest of us would be less intimidated : )

    aw, thanks ma (blushing) Vogue Patterns had a lot of great designer blouses in the 80's - Calvin Klein, Anne Klein, Guy Laroche, Chloe, you still have that picture of you in that green silk pleated blouse (i think Calvin Klein?) that would be a lot of fun to post!

  6. Since I sorted the cedar chest-full of photos not too long ago, I am not in a dead faint at this request. I'll try to take a look this weekend (between herding the Girls and the pups).