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I am a mother, a new grandmother, and a teacher. But whatever happens in my life, I keep sewing. I have worked as a political communicator and now as a teacher in my formal life. I have also written extensively on sewing. I have been a frequent contributor and contributing editor of Threads magazine and the Australian magazine Dressmaking with Stitches. My first book Sew.. the garment-making book of knowledge will be published in May 2018 and is available for pre-order from Amazon


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Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Grey basics for the suitcase

You know I like bright colours and quirky projects, I have been particularly quirky lately. However getting ready for a little road trip this last week down to a wedding in DC I remembered that packable basics have their place.

I also gave the colour grey some thought - it's a basic but not too dark - so check trans-seasonal. It goes with other basics, namely navy and black, and it's also a low key backdrop for bright pastels, which I love.

I also figure that with all the visiting and road trips I do, knits are my only option.

Since I did all this serious thinking only a few days before I was due to fill up the suitcase, I decided that TNT patterns were my only option.

Since I have made the little girls both velour Helene cardigans in the last few weeks, they loved them and I thought they looked cozy too, I decided to just go ahead and make myself a big girl version.

I used a grey version of the cotton mix knit velour I got at Fabricville for the little girls. It has a sort of silvery cast to it which I think is useful in case I go out to a restaurant or something in my travels and want to look smoother than a person who spends most of her time walking dogs and sewing.

My assistant has to be in every picture

To wear under this I made a pair of pull-on pants from the Jalie woven pull-on pants pattern, just cut a size smaller since I was working with a stretch crepe knit.  I really like the leg of these pants, straight leg and sort of wide but not overwhelmingly so, unlike so many similar patterns.

This left me with a top pattern to come up with and here I went for a new to me pattern but an easy one.

This is the pattern I used, a sort of athletic looking top I have passed over for a few years now:

It turns out that you don't have to have a zipper in this top and you don't need to carry a bike helmet. This is good because I am going by car this trip.

It also turns out this is a super pattern, the front is made from two folds seamed up only half way making a facing/lining along the neck edge. The whole thing cut to finish only took me under an hour which is about all the time I had to pull the last part of this little outfit together. I made it from the same crepe knit as the pants to make a sort of ensemble which is handy when you travel.

Here are my shots, the whole project, done with one eye on the clock. I am pretty happy with how this outfit turned out because I know it is going to be so useful.

A fun sew and not the last time I use these patterns.

I have to say that I am beginning to really appreciate the multi-sizedness of Jalie's patterns. My pants here are the same pattern I used to make little Billy's size 3 PJs, and the cardigan has now been made for four members of the family sized 6- 40.

BTW Daisy is not on this trip. Too quick and we will be at a wedding etc. most of the time. We really miss her but she is at home with my niece who is the midst of major studying this week.

They are spending most of their time right now reading in Daisy's favourite chair - and we got this update today:

I think she will survive the week without us.


KS_Sews said...

Jusy wonderful and so versatile!

Anonymous said...

Well done! Thanks for the inspiration.

Elle said...

You look downright elegant!

Vancouver Barbara said...

Love the whole shebang. Colour. Fabrics. Styles. Neckline. And on you. So good. Love that neckline. It's brilliant. Million bucks. Perfecto. You will feel so good and it will travel so well. Heaven. Where did you get the stretchy crepe fabric?

SewRuthie said...

Great outfit I can see it liked that or mixed with other pieces.

Dot Wankat said...

You look very stylish - wonderful choice of fabrics and patterns, great fit, and that long necklace is just right.

Anonymous said...

OH, a Miss D update always makes me happy, and then the wonderful outfit. I REALLY need some home time to finish a couple started and lost momentum projects and start something fun. Next week.....


Patty said...

Fabulous! You took some basic athleisure-type patterns and made a very elegant ensemble .....and the color looks great on you. Gray has become my new base neutral since I let me hair go gray a few years ago. :-)

A McSweeney said...

That may not be a flashy and exciting outfit, but it's a quiet elegant one, that suits you very well! Well done!

Catherine said...

Love the whole ensemble! So elegant and should play nicely with your pastels too. I really need to try some Jalie patterns.

LinB said...

Have been seeking gray fabrics to make basics for more than a decade ... apparently they've all been shipped to Canada. I resorted to royal purple, scarlet, and mustard yellow instead.

Laceflower said...

A great, versatile, elegant outfit, well done.

garnet128 said...

Very smart looking outfit. Too bad Miss Daisy is having to 'ruff' it this week. She looks horribly upset.

Anonymous said...

I think that this is a wonderful travel outfit - so classy! The neckline of that top is absolutely perfect on you too.

Jane M said...

Sewing or walking a dog....sounds like the good life in my house too. Great outfit and good reminder that I have some unused Jalie patterns that I need to sew.

Vicki said...

Very smart outfit!

SuzieB said...

Looks great on you!

Leigh said...

Wow! That is a knockout outfit! I love it. And Daisy is, as always, adorable. You're right, I think she will survive the week. LOL