Friday, March 19, 2021

Wearable Curtains

If you have been following this blog, you are probably familiar with my love of upholstery fabric for garment sewing.

It's beautiful, sturdy, and I love the oversized prints.

This particular skirt is made from some rather special upholstery fabric.  It was once curtains and a wing back chair owned by my maternal Grandmother; I believe her sister covered the chair, and I am not sure who made the matching curtains.  I am not entirely clear on what became of the chair, but I don't believe the fabric remnants I have were ripped from a chair because they are in pretty good shape!  So the yardage in my possession was probably leftovers and maybe some curtain pieces.

I knew that I would eventually make something with the fabric, and after stitching together my first Butterick 6556 dress (which, coincidentally, was also made from upholstery fabric), I thought that the pleated skirt pieces would make an excellent skirt.  And I am so glad I went ahead with the project!

The top is The Gable Top from Jennifer Lauren Handmade.  This version was a bit of a test as the pattern is meant for a much lighter weight knit fabric with more stretch than the pink ponte I chose. 

I love my polka dot Gable that was made from a rayon spandex.  This top, unfortunately, does not get nearly as much wear since it is not as comfortable.  The ponte just doesn't have the same kind of stretch, and the mistake is entirely mine.  But that's just part of my learning process with knit fabrics; I still have so much to learn with stretchy textiles.  

I do adore the pink color, which is why I purchased the yardage.  But I just couldn't see wearing such a light colored knit fabric on the lower half of my body, so it had to be a top.  That's my own hangup, but I just don't think it looks good.  ("People of Walmart" flesh colored leggings come to mind, and I never plan to be the person wearing light colored leggings as a pigment challenged individual. Those photos give me nightmares.  If you have beautifully pigmented skin, go ahead and rock those pale pink or taupe colored leggings, but why on earth does anyone want to wear leggings that are almost the same shade as their skin?!!?)  And why do I think that a shirt that is a pretty good match to my skin tone is acceptable?  I can't quantify it, but in my world, it works.  Moving on . . .

The really nice part about this print is that the color palette goes with so many of my tops and sweaters, which is probably the reason it gets so much wear.  And now I'm off to go find even more cool toned pink and maroon fabrics to make more blouses to match.

Top:  Made by me, "The Gable Top" by Jennifer Lauren Handmade
Skirt:  Made by me, Butterick 6556
Shoes:  American Duchess "Marilyn Pumps"


  1. Most patterns intended for knits, at least more up to date patterns, will include a statement about the percent stretch needed for your fabric selection. The secret to choosing a knit fabric with the right amount of stretch is to do a stretch test of the fabric to see if it matches the pattern requirements. For example, if the pattern calls for a fabric with 75% stretch, which is a very stretchy fabric, then a 4” piece of the knit should easily stretch to 7” when stretched along the weft; a fabric with 35% should stretch to approximately 5.5”, etc. Even when the fabric matches the stretch required by the pattern, if you are unhappy with the “recovery” of the fabric (does the fabric return to the original 4”?), move on! Otherwise, you will have a garment that turns into a bag every time it is worn! Enjoy exploring knits. As one who always preferred sewing with more stable fabrics, I have learned so much and stretched (pun intended) my sewing abilities as a result!

  2. Realmente magnífica y el colorido de la tapicería es precioso y primaveral. BESICOS.

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  4. Ha, as someone similarly pigment challenged, I totally get it! That pink is a very pretty colour on you, but I would agree not for leggings/pants where they'll blend in completely.