Success: Date Night Outfit!

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This is a success on a few different levels. First, I had something to wear that I felt great in for our Valentine’s Date Night (movie and dinner (Life of Pi and Italian)). The outfit came together exactly as I planned and looked great with the boots as I had hoped. I even caught myself humming “I feel pretty” at the bus stop on the way to Heather and Morgan’s with the kiddos. The picture changed the color of the skirt a little. It is closer to raspberry in real life.

Second, I had this ready more than a few hours before we needed to leave. It’s never fun to be frantic at the sewing machine when you’re supposed to be getting two kids ready, packing the diaper bag or doing your hair. I hemmed the skirt while the boys where in a day bath and somehow the whole family was ready an incredible 2 minutes before we needed to leave.

Third, I’ve made a whole outfit! One of my sewing goals is to make whole outfits instead of orphan pieces that fill my closet but still leave me crying, “I have nothing to wear.”

Here are some details. The shirt is Simplicity 4076 (info here). It is a “Hall of Fame” and “Best Pattern” on my review website and I’ve made the twist top and the gathered neckline versions, also. The pattern pretty much fit out of the envelope size 16 although I had to get creative with the modesty panel and hand stitch the cross over front a little to get it to stay where it goes. I love the gathers on the side.

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The fabric is a very expensive knit from Elliot Berman Fabrics I bought on a PatternReview.com shopping trip here in the city in 2009. Apparently it is from Europe somewhere but I just love the chocolate color with the delicate pink and white flowers. I was so nervous to use it for so long and then when I pulled it out of my stash I found a flaw in the print which was frustrating but also liberating. It sewed up very nicely.

The skirt is Simplicity 7196 (info here). It is an out of print pattern that comes with a lot of recommendations. I found it on ebay. It might be out of print because one of the pattern pieces for the pants says, “arm band trim.” It is a very easy pattern to put together. Basic, but allows for a lot of personal design. It will be a staple although I haven’t figured out the waistband facing yet. The heavy denim fabric came from a men’s suit designer shop in the Garment District, A.K. Fabrics. It sewed up very nicely, too, although it is so stiff that it knocked everything off my sewing table and ironing board as I put it together. It also bent a handful of my pins. It will soften up a bit with wear / wash.
Topstitching details:

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Cute pocket lining with a equally cute but kind of wonky waistband facing:

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More topstitching, recycled button, facing:

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Now I’ll switch to a totally different fabric as I return to my bra making adventures (so far just reading and tracing and stressing) and then finishing up the olive pants out of the same Simplicity 7196.

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