It’s rare that I have a vision of exactly how I want to make up a pattern. Generally I collect patterns, collect fabrics, and match them up depending on my needs.
When this pattern came out a year or two ago, I knew exactly how I wanted to make up the vest/top – with indigo ikat fabrics. It’s just taken me this long to get around to making it.
The fabrics came from eQuilter. They have an extensive selection of quilting cottons, but also have a nice selection of fabrics that are more down my alley, too. There’s a section of the website devoted to oriental fabrics. But even better, a search on the term yarn dye turns up all kinds of lovely things that to me are just right for patterns with just a few pieces, like the Cutting Line styles. Check out a few samples:
There are lots of nice chambrays and cross-woven fabrics, too.
They had a several patterns of indigo and white ikat to choose from. I picked three, two that were related in value and one for contrast that was the inverse of one of the main fabrics. Estimated how much to buy and I was a little short – so I had to cut separate lining pieces for the lower fronts and back. If you buy enough, these pieces are meant to be cut all in one, so that there is a fold rather than a seam at the lower edge. Less bulky that way.
The vest is fun and easy to make, especially if you buy enough fabric to start with. If you have a lot of interesting scraps, you can piece it any way you like to use up all the little pieces you can’t bear to toss.
The front opening crosses low enough that the vest requires an underlayer. I picked up a cheapie tank at J.C. Penny’s that will work just fine. It seems like it should be easy to adapt the vest to be a top, and I actually started to draft that up, but couldn’t decide exactly how the closure should be handled, so just went with the vest as drafted.
I also made the pants, so I have the whole ensemble. There was fabric in the stash for indigo pants, but that seemed a little matchy-matchy for an “artsy” outfit. Instead, I used a dark gray cotton/hemp blend that was pretty much the same value as the indigo. Followed the fitting instructions included in the pattern, knowing that they would work for me. The hemline for the pants is faced, so there’s no adjusting length at the end of the fitting process. I decided to make up the first pair as drafted, and then adjust the length later on if I make another pair. I saw Louise wearing these at an expo last year and hers were just above the ankle. I have fat ankles, and these hit me at a wide spot – I think I’ll make them just a hair shorter if I make them again.
I kind of like the lantern-shaped pants I’ve made, both these and the Marcy Tilton ones. I do like them better in drapey fabrics. This pair will probably soften up with a few more washes – and may shrink up a little in length, too, which would make them really nice.
This is a fun outfit. I don’t think I’ll make another complete ensemble, but might make each piece separately again. The pants would be very cute in black with ballet flats and a slim knit top.