DIY Upcycle: Vintage Wool Vest Ouji Style

H A P P Y   N E W  Y E A R  ! ! !  While the new year is officially underway, I still have a lot of projects to catch everyone up on. Starting with this one.

We spent the Autumn Equinox in Paris and were on a shopping mission like no other. Of the many amazing places we explored we hit the jackpot when we came upon Kilo-Shop. This is honestly one of the best thrift/vintage stores I have ever been too. Super well organized, extremely well priced, and with top notch curation. And it was a rare experience that both of us equally had choices to select from – an atypically well balanced mix of hip mens and womens ware. Ideas were literally pouring out of me onto the shop floor and our arms were over burdened with everything we were hording for checkout.

breathing new life into an vintage thrifted wool vest

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Project Complete: Melty Mozart Angelic Pretty Remake

Angelic Pretty dress remade into Ouji coordinate

A pair of scissors, a stitch ripper, a few yards of brown fabric, some braid trim and a whole lot of courage were applied to Angelic Pretty’s Chocolate Quartet and this is the result. As I described in my last post, your main piece to attend the AM Skyline Tea Party was required to be one of the 4 brands who would be represented. Somehow I knew sweet ouji could be done, but trying to find anyone else who made such radical alterations was impossible online. Deep down I was having all sort of feels that he would be turned away since it was not the original design. All my worry turned out to be for naught.

getting to see your design with asuka and maki ... priceless

Every second of anxiety was rewarded with the out pouring of happy reactions to the look. THANK YOU ALL!! I loved that Asuka and Maki didn’t make a fuss. They had the most perfect of Japanese masks on the entire time. But there were subtle clues that they were pleased and hopefully flattered. Their adorable associate Rin-chan certainly was very diligent in taking several photos of all the details (ノ◕ヮ◕)ノ*:・゚✧

adel with midori fukasawa and jla ambassador daniela

By far the best reaction was Midori running, not walking, across the room with phone in hand to ask Adel for a selfie. ٩(ó。ò۶ ♡)))♬ I managed to catch the best parts on film.

adel with the j-fashon models

So many photos from the party!!! I can’t believe that it has almost been two weeks since then. I am still reliving all the wonderful memories on Facebook with new posts that are trickling in. We met so many wonderful and amazing people which is honestly the most rewarding part of this fashion. Yes its about the clothes, but that is just what breaks the ice and brings us together.

making alterations to chocolate quartet to make ouji style

The majority of the vest was made from fabric from the JSK. The body of the vest was taken from the skirt. I reinserted the original JSK collar. The remainder of the skirt was used to make the back tails of the vest. From the salopette I reused all of the buttons and did my best to mimic the double breasted panel. Part of the skirt was used for the tails on the front of the vest. And the ribbon from the salopette was attached to an Innocent World tie in a mash up of bow-tie meets cravat. Oh and the little button panel from the back of the salopette also made its way onto the back of the vest.

I tried really hard to not make too many additions. But I needed a few elements to create balance. Especially important since the border print is so strong. The addition of the 3 melty chocolate pieces felt just right to me to establish harmony; two panels on the front of the vest and one on the back.

While I adore how this turned out there are so many things I would have done differently if I was starting from first principles. If I had just the original fabric it would have been nice to keep the border print only on the tails of the vest instead of also on the body. But you work with what you have. At the end of the day I am over the moon pleased. I really hope you like it too ෆ⃛(ٛ⌯ॢ˃ ɪ ˂ٛ⌯ॢ)

Sweetie’s Challenge: Handmade Ouji Vest Part 1

While waiting for parcels to finish my other blouse, this weekend I dove into the world of making menswear. And we have named this adventure, “Royal Order of the White Rabbit.” The concept is to have layers of cream but with very royal details such as the military braid and the lush raised velvet arabesque in the main fabric. OK Sheri so if it is about the “white” rabbit why is it cream? Well most white bunnies I have encountered aren’t exactly pure white so I am sticking with it.

Work in Progress

handmade kodona ouji velvet brocade vest tail coat

I made significant changes to this Butterick pattern. Always start with a muslin draft folks!!! The armholes on the pattern were just dreadful so trimmed them back and made modifications to the fit of the shoulder.  Then took it in a bit on the sides. Also removed a few inches from the front and drafted the inset vest panels. The biggest challenge was figuring out how to ensure a professional finish as the pattern was unlined. There are 3 seams inside that I didn’t properly think through in my mind first so can correct for that on the next vest by splitting the back lining at the waist. The tail flaps and the front seams all turned out crisp and nice which was the key objective.

belgian medal of civic service and french macaron fabric details of this kadona vest

Still a ways to go and finish up. Need to make the button holes, finish the arm holes, add the collar, and add pockets for some extra distinction. Then it will be onto making the ouji/kodona breeches. Not as worried about those as I have made shorts for the Boy in the past. But still, need to ensure all the details come out just right.

Oh and how can I forget, it took a few searches, but finally found a plain, cream, wool tricorn on eBay. Originally I assumed we would buy a brand hat for him, but since I’m at it might as well make a matching one to complete the look. Spent more than I would have liked, but it appears to be well made and is a blank slate so that I can decorate it to my liking.

no ouji look would be complete without a proper hat so a wool tricorn is added to the project list