Being of Asian descent, I’ve always taken it as gospel that I can’t wear the color yellow because the natural undertones of my skin would shine like a beacon and make me look jaundiced. I’m sure it was from some random Seventeen magazine or some such I read when I was about 10. I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve worn this sunny hue near my face (t-shirts for school events come to mind).
So I was hesitant to sew with this SILK (need to capitalize that – if you’ve been around here for awhile, you know that I avoid any kind of slippery fabric). But this is more on the mustard side of the yellow spectrum, and I just really like it. It has a subtle plaid pattern with moss green, rust, orange and grey lines. As you can see above, the fabric was a remnant, and you can bet your life savings that my mom did not pay $27 for this. I don’t think she’s ever shelled out more than $3/yard for any fabric. Ah, the joys of living near the Los Angeles fashion district…I have one more separate cut of this same fabric, and I’m saving it for something summery – maybe for K.
I don’t know why I’ve been so scared to sew with silk. Sure, I wouldn’t win any precision cutting contests because it does like to shimmy and slide a tad, but really, it wasn’t bad at all. Besides, I don’t think I would win a precision cutting contest for any fabric.
I just made sure to use extra sharp needles, and kept the iron setting fairly low (though I found I could go a little higher than the recommended “2” without scorching the delicate fabric). Doesn’t the back look familiar? Yep, I modified the dress from last week. The pattern is from this book. I sewed the size 11 that is considered a medium in Japanese sewing, which fits surprisingly well and I’m happy to report that I did a much better job with the tricky underarm bits. I have another dress cut out, but I wanted to experiment to see how it would look as a tunic. I have to say I’m happy with the results. I chopped nine inches from the hem, and made other changes too:
1. Lowered the neckline by 1.25 inches. I lost the v-neck with the way I cut it, but I don’t mind.
2. Widened the sleeve openings a touch. When the sleeves rode up my arms on the dress, I noticed they cut off my forearm circulation. Sausage link forearms, it’s a hard look to pull off.
3. Used bias binding for the neckband. Also made the neckband half the width. The original pattern calls for a neckband cut parallel to the grain and I wasn’t too keen on the thicker neckband. It would have been nice to get my thinner neckband to lay flatter, but I’m not terribly picky.
Here they are, side by side:
I think I’m about to sneeze in the photo above. I could have put in more effort with styling, I admit. These are my I-feel-icky-and-can’t-be-bothered-loose-jeans. They are so comfortable. Love ’em. And I grabbed my tough girl boots just because they were there. Were I to miraculously conceive a child, this top would also serve double-duty as maternity wear as so many of my clothes do. But because the silk is slightly sheer, floaty and, well, silky, it feels luxe and comfortable. A win in my book.
I know it doesn’t seem it like it, but I am sewing for KCW, though I’m scaling way back. Also, I’ve cottoned on from past KCWs that trying to get photos of K during the week is a traumatizing affair for everyone involved. So I plan on showing you what I get around to stitching up on Monday!