It might seem a tad odd posting this sewing project just days before the Summer Solstice. A sweater, really? In the summer Sheri? But here we are. Technically this was completed while the days were still chilly however, I realize it might not get its debut out-and-about until the autumn. Another oddity of this project, can you believe it began almost 2 years ago?!?! Yep, back with this post here. Then we decided to move and into limbo it went, all the pieces cut out ready to be finished, tucked nicely into one-too-many boxes of fabric.
The joy of this DIY project is recycling so many different pieces. All in all it was 3 sweaters and 3 t-shirts, plus some extra jersey and then the lace and crochet trims. The lilac fabric at the bottom wasn’t a part of the original design. It was a Wonder Rocket sweater that just never fit right. When finally sewing all the pieces I quickly didn’t like the top of the piece being the sweater knit and the bottom plain t-shirt. It looked unfinished otherwise.
The sweater came together fast — zip zip zip on the serger. Hey I know, why not make bottoms to go with it! Not sure if I can label the shorts as neo lolita but all the buzz of that trend influenced me. The iced sugar cookie fabric was intended to be made into the typical lolita cupcake skirt one day. What swayed me from the traditional for this super sweet print? Lack of time to attend events basically. I need more doing your homework at Starbucks on Sunday coordinates. This style of short is great because it is full enough to sit cross legged on the bench at my local Sutāba and still be modest and cute. So lets write this one up as part fairy kei and part neo lolita. Now I just need to wait for the air to turn crisp and the leaves to be tempted from their branches telling me autumn has arrived. Until then my friends…
P.S. The pull quotes used in the Kera-inspired layout are from this poem.
When summer rolls around you want simple pieces in your wardrobe that you can just pull on and go. Easy breezy dresses with simple accessories are great to beat the heat. While taking inventory in my closet I realized cute and comfortable dresses were lacking. Sure there are lots of dresses, but not the type that you can slip into and pop off.
The first brand that comes to mind for relaxed cute is Milk. I was aiming for a one piece dress that would fit nicely in their summer line up. A statement element like the bold cherries with a bib collar for a focal point. This is sure to become my new favorite dress.
After moving to the new house I made a pledge to not buy more fabric until I made a dent in what I already have. Now, how was I to refuse this cotton jersey covered in big juicy cherries when it showed up on my Etsy dash? The fabric is white and lightweight so I lined the entire piece in a equally light gray jersey so as to avoid needing a camisole and slip.
Would have added more pintucks, however I was recycling a free t-shirt I got from a work event. It was a great quality cotton but not something I would ever wear out. So I cut off the bottom portion of the shirt to make the bib. Maybe could have squeezed in two more tucks but not positive. The cotton rose lace I have been holding onto waiting for the perfect project. Turns out this was it – he he.
In curating the latest for spring, when it came to cherries there were so many choices it was hard to pick my favorites. While trying to keep only to Japanese brands, couldn’t bring myself to exclude the adorable wedge sandals from Mod Cloth. Look how sweet they are! He he, and when compiling the Gingham mood board, it was clear that these two trends go hand-in-hand. So start picnic season early this year and pull on a cherry print to celebrate the return of spring.
The summer lolita handbag is coming together nicely. I finished the exterior decorations yesterday. Seeing it next to Baby’s Cherry print from last year I think the quality of my execution is very in-keeping with the brand’s esthetic. Fun, frilly, sweet but still refined and sophisticated.
Hot glue was my best friend for attaching the two lace trims. A little painters tape came in handy to line up the rows in exactly the spot I wanted them. I was generous with the glue but also very careful. I didn’t want big globs of it to show nor did I want it to drip thru the wicker into the inside of the bag. I paid particular attention for the rose trim. Each leaf and blossom was glued down one at a time. Took a lot of patience but well worth the investment to make the finished look smooth, clean and perfectly placed.
After the lace dried I added the string of pearls. I used a beading wire to give it strength. Gravity is going to constantly be pulling on them so things needed to be secure. Got creative and decided to use a beading spacer bar to make sure the wire is crimped snugly and wont slide around or slip thru to the front accidentally.
And before you think I am crazy enough to hot glue on my dresses waist ribbon, I am not. Using the same beading wire and two jump rings I made hoops for the detachable bow to attach to. Originally I thought I would just pin the bow on to the lace, but that worried me. The weight of the bow could tug on the lace too much and pull up the hot glue or it could just damage the lace over time. Neither would be pleasant situations. The location of the hot glue also challenged that idea, it is smack dab right where I want the bow placed anyway. So with a little strength and a good sewing needle I was able to pierce the hot glue and string the hoop through instead.
The bonus prize for this method is different color bows can be mixed and matched on the front of the purse. For example, the blue ribbon from this sax color BTSSB dress to make a perfect coordinate, and say a pink bow to match another. I’ll whip up one using the lining fabric to start things off.
Last step was to hot glue on the cherries. I found these small crochet cherry appliques at Joyce Trimming in NYC. They have a section towards the back of the store where you can find plenty of boxes of applique and patches to suit many different tastes.
Before dinner I had just enough time to start planning out the interior of the purse. Light does filter through the wicker so using some fusible interfacing and pink cherry fabric to line the main body seemed like the right thing to do. Next, I added a layer of quilt batting to cover the wooden frame. Hopefully after work today I can do the math to start the lining. Found this tutorial that should be a good jumping off point for keeping all the handbag contents nice and neat.
For now, ciao lovelies. Have a super Friday.
I started putting together a coordinate for an upcoming convention. My second Con to be exact. Once the dress form was lookin all good and frilly, it came to purse options. I have tried every bag I own and no joy. So I hit the brand sites and still no love. What’s a girl to do? Then it came to me – Etsy! And score! For $26 + shipping, this beautiful vintage wicker handbag was on its way.
But you know me. Can’t be that easy. No this vintage jem is about to get the full treatment. The package arrived late yesterday and I could wait to start the creative process. The Plan: decorate to be a perfect match for Baby, the Stars Shine Bright Cherish my Juicy Cherry. The purse is missing its original lining. But that isn’t a problem, that’s an opportunity. I have some nice pink cherry fabric from last summer’s DIY marathon that will be a good match.
As you can see above, the outside is starting to take shape. I played with a bunch of embellishments, laces and various compositions. So far this option using the waist bow from the dress along with some pearls, lace and crocheted cherries is my favorite.
And the best part? We have a nice long holiday ahead which couldn’t be a more perfect time to start some DIY July. Get ready glue gun. Here I come.