This post is looooooonnnggg over due! This was one of my first makes for #theyearofslowsewing and I can’t believe I’m just now getting around to share it with you. I had so much fun with this project. It was a great one to start the new year off with as it brought me out of a bit of a creative rut.
A bit of back story…
I’ve had this chambray in my stash for over a year. I got it from Style Maker Fabrics when I won a gift card from them in an Instagram challenge (probably two years ago). It is so beautiful, I love the drape. It has the most gorgeously delicate selvedge edge with a thin red stripe. It has the slightest sheen to it.
It’s the perfect example of a classic chambray and I almost felt like I didn’t deserve to have it in my stash. This fabric belongs to someone with one of those perfectly minimalist wardrobes. Chic, simple, and effortless. In other words… not me! I was super intimidated by this fabric. I couldn’t get those pristine minimalist looks out of my head when I thought of what to make with it while at the same time knowing every time I try to pull a look off like that I just look sloppy like I’m about to go take a nap (or just woke up from one). I figured I would end up making some sort of shirt dress out of it and call it a day.
Then came the beginning of 2019. I was ready to start my #theyearofslowsewing journey, I was fresh off of a season of burnout, and I wanted to tackle something different.
I had my eye on the free spring shorts pattern from Peppermint Magazine even though I wasn’t 100% sure if they were my style. I had also told myself after last years tap shorts marathon that I was done making shorts (I rarely wear them). But this pattern looked seriously comfortable and great for summer heat.
I knew I had more fabric than I needed for just the shorts. So naturally my next thought was to make a top to go with it. I am very into matching separates these days – so much versatility! I started browsing my pinterest board for tops patterns to decide what top to make with it, thinking I could always fall back on a Krissa Crop if I didn’t find anything.
For some reason the Epicea Blouse by Orageuse Patterns caught my eye. I immediately could see it as a fun wrap crop top.
Once I got the patterns printed and cut and started fitting everything on the fabric, I realized it was going to be a bit of a squeeze (I think I had 1.5-2yds). I had to piece together fabric for the wrap around ties to work.
Then the thought came to me… how cool would it be if I found a way to use every bit of fabric on this garment!!? Once I thought it, I couldn’t get it out of my head.
I started playing around with appliqué motifs and came up with this idea for a feathered look at the shoulders. I almost left all the pieces loose and flying but it was a bit too eighties fab for me. I decided to stitch them all down and love the look! I only wrapped it around to the back on one shoulder because I liked the asymmetry combined with the wrap detail.
For the shorts, I wanted to highlight the beautiful selvedge edge. Luckily the side seems on these shorts are completely straight with the fabric grain so I cut them right on the selvedge and sewed the side seams wrong sides together. I then pressed the seams open and stitched them down for a fun stripe detail on the sides. It makes me think of classic boxer shorts and I love it!
I also decided to add a back patch pocket with some of the extra fabric and utilized the selvedge edge there as well.
I didn’t have to make many fit adjustments to either pattern. For the shorts, I just shortened them about 1.5″. I feel like with the high waist and bagginess you’ve gotta contrast it with some leg 😉
On the top, I of course ended up scooping out the under arms for more breathing and moving room. I also added some belt loops at the side seams to keep the ties in place. If I do a cropped version of this again, I think I would make it a touch longer for it to sit right at my waist instead of just above as it does now.
See it in action:
SKIP TO THE END?
Pattern: Blouse Epicea by Orageuse Patterns & Peppermint Magazine Spring Shorts
Fabric: Chambray from Style Maker Fabrics from Stash
Difficulty: Shorts – easy, Blouse – Intermediate
Adjustments: Shortened shorts 1.5″, lowered armhole of top, hacked blouse to be a crop top.
Finishes: Shorts sewn with selvedge edge at side seam, all other edges serged, shorts hemmed with facing, blouse arm and neck openings bias bound
Sew it again? Both of these are in consideration for re-makes. Most likely the blouse before the shorts. I’d like to make the long sleeve version for fall!
The picture above is the fabric I had left! This isn’t entirely accurate, as I saved some small squares to add to my patchwork pile. And I did end up cutting off more when I lowered the arm holes and shortened the shorts. But still pretty dang good I’d say!!
Have you ever tried a project like this! I can honestly say its one of the funnest times I’ve had creating probably since I was in school! I highly recommend giving it a go!