I really missed my blog in the last month, but life got busy and priorities had to be set…. Apart from that, I’ve been working on making some space for my own little sewing room in the bungalow we have in the backyard and selling things on Ebay that have been stashed there for way too long. That has been a real trial in patience, as some things don’t sell as fast as you want them to. So the sewing room hasn’t made much progress either…. April was not a very successful month in some ways. But May has gotten off to a better start in the creative department, thankfully.
The weather in Melbourne was extraordinarily warm for autumn (probably the only good thing about global warming) so I didn’t really feel like making any wintery clothes until now. I was thinking about what my next blog could be about, when I rediscovered a furry top that I had started some time last year and stopped half way through to start something else that I got excited about making. That is very typical of me unfortunately. I will start to sew something that I really want to get done and then get sidetracked by something else that comes to mind, only to finish it off much later…. Still working on changing that behavioural pattern, as it does get annoying having unfinished stuff lying around.
I found the free pattern (size XS) for this top on the sewing blog by The Selfish Seamstress and luckily for me it was the right size without any alterations. You can download it here: faux fur top pattern.
It’s a good replica of a Kate Spade top from a few years ago but without the front pocket or the bow at the back and a slightly wider collar. The stand up collar (which folds in half) is so sixties chic! The top just slips on over your head and has no zip or button closure.
I found a beautiful, very soft faux fur at The Fabric Store and bought just enough for this top. It looks so real, it’s amazing. The lining is a dark chocolate taffeta from my stash.
I haven’t sewn with faux fur for ages. Due to it’s thickness you really have to hand sew the seams together before machine sewing them, as they tend to slip otherwise, which is very annoying. Otherwise this pattern was very easy and quick to sew. The lining was a bit of trouble because the faux fur does have some stretch to it, but obviously the taffeta I used for the lining doesn’t and I am not entirely happy with the outcome of the lining of the lower torso, as it sits quite tight around the hips. So somewhere down the track, I will be cutting it off and widening it to make the top more comfortable to wear. But not just now. I am too busy multi-tasking a lot of summer projects for our up and coming winter escape.
I made one alteration to the pattern by adding on about 5cm of length to the sleeves. I still had some bits of faux fur left over and when I tried the top on to check the length of the finished sleeves, I thought they were a bit too short for cold, blustery winter days. I guess front pockets would be great, like in the original Kate Spade top, but I thought they would make the it look too bulky and didn’t want to bother playing around with the pattern to accommodate them.
I find it looks good either with a belt or without and long leather gloves add a bit of class to the outfit. Despite it already being the middle of May and almost winter here, the weather has been too warm to wear this top, but it will definitely get some wear when winter sets in. I will be wearing it with jeans, pencil skirts and winter tweed shorts, opaque stockings and boots, with or without a belt, depending on the look I am after.
Overall, I am happy with the result but still need to get around to widening the bottom of the lining to make it more comfortable and less tight around the hips. It is definitely warm and snug to wear and I can’t wait to wear it on a cold winter’s day. The other good thing is that you can easily make it in a few hours!
STYLING: jeans: Esprit, boots: Zara, elbow length gloves: Myer, sunglasses: Lanester by Agenda, belt: Impressionen, Germany
LOCATION: St John’s Anglican Church Sorrento, Victoria, Australia