Canary Yellow Playsuit

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I used to really dislike yellow when I was growing up, but somehow it grew on me over the last few decades and now it is one of my favourite colours! This post is not on a garment I have recently made, but one from last year sometime when I discovered Collette Dinnigan’s resort collection, in which she had a gorgeous yellow playsuit. It was so beautiful that it inspired me to make my own version. Playsuits are still very much in this season and so I thought it was worth a blog post this spring.

Coincidently my stash of fabrics was hiding a gorgeous yellow sateen cotton that was perfect for this playsuit. So I fished it out, found exactly the right colour organza in my stash to match it and also had some yellow lining in there somewhere too – which tells you a lot about the size of my fabric collection!

The playsuit needed underlining and lining, as the yellow cotton was too thin to hold its shape otherwise. For the underlining, I used a matching yellow organza and for the lining, a yellow polyester. I would have preferred to use a nice yellow silk for the lining, but I thought it would be wise to use what I already have instead of buying more…

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I didn’t have a playsuit pattern for this style, so I used two patterns to make it up. One was a dress pattern, that had the sleeves I was after, and the other was a playsuit pattern for the lower half. I was not sure how to go about connecting them both without wasting the fabric and ruining the whole thing, but thought it would join best at the place marked ‘waist’ on both patterns and so that is what I did.  Luckily both patterns had a front seam in the middle of the garment, which made it easier to combine the two. I am usually too lazy to make a muslin, as I just want to get on with what I am doing and not have to sew it twice. By that time, I am starting to get bored and my thoughts are already on the next project…

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The construction took some time, as the playsuit has three layers of fabric and playing around with the two patterns cost some time too. I also had to adjust the bell shaped sleeves to the width I wanted and the length and width of the bottom half, as the pattern I was using was a size too big for me. As always, it was a lot of trying on and fixing up.

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I didn’t really know how to make the belt look interesting and then I remembered that I had a metal “buckle” (I guess you could call it that) from a shoulder bag I once had. The bag was all tattered after many years of use and I ended up disposing of it but cut off the metal piece that was sewn to the handle and knew I would use it for something. So this was just the right “something”! I think it looks very individual and I was happy to be able to recycle something and make good use of it. It closes with a hook and eye on the inside of the belt so that it is not visible on the outside.

The back has the longest invisible zip I could find to make stepping in and out of the playsuit easy.

I have worn this playsuit on a number of occasions and due to the soft feel of the fabric, it is very comfortable to wear and I love the canary yellow colour. It’s perfect for spring/summer.  I am planning on making another one soon with a long pant leg in – you guessed it – navy blue! I just can’t help myself when it comes to navy at the moment!

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I didn’t think that the outfit needed more jewellery than the chunky silver ring due to the buckle being a statement in itself. So in this case I think less is more. If a garment has any embellishment on it, I think it looks better without or minimal accessories, otherwise it can look overloaded. The playsuit can be dressed down with flat sandals and a straw hat or a head scarf to give it a vintage look, as the original playsuit patterns came from the sixties to my knowledge.

Styling:  Shoes: Steve Madden ‘Stecy’ in blush, Ring: Apart Fashion (German label), Watch: Gucci, Sunglasses: Tom Ford ‘Margot’

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