Polkadot Playsuit

Time to Play

The weather is really starting to heat up here in mercurial Melbourne, and even though today is the last day of spring, we’ve already had some pretty scorching days. So although I’ve really been meaning to start work on planning some more separates and outfits for placement next year, the temptation to sew fun summer clothes has just been too strong. Exhibit A, my new 50s-style playsuit, with matching headband!

 

Polkadot Playsuit

The pattern and inspiration for this make came from Gertie Sews Vintage Casual, which I received for my birthday back in May. I haven’t really made anything from it yet, excepting the quilted circle skirt – but that was more “inspired by”, as I didn’t actually use a pattern from the book – so I count this as my first proper make from it! It’s a combination of the shorts variation of the cigarette pants and the halter top pattern…with a few off-the-cuff variations thrown in πŸ˜‰ the head band is the same tutorial I used for my floral co-ord set earlier this year.

Polkadot Playsuit

The bodice came up a treat! The feature which really sold me on giving it a go was the shirred panels at the side back. I own several RTW dresses with shirring at the back and the fit is always fantastic; the stretch built in into the fabric accommodates the difference between my bust and waist sizes almost magically. It really isn’t a difficult technique to get the hang of, either; the instructions in Gertie’s book are more than sufficient, but this Craftsy page offers a few further helpful tips. I still graded between sizes for the bodice, however, from an eight at the bust to a four at the waist. I also made a few changes: I omitted the batting in the cups, and the boning at the side seams. Both of these features are intended to add structure to the top, I imagine so that it can be worn without a bra. Seeing as I don’t plan on doing that, I skipped them. I also left the original halter straps, instead of lengthening them and sewing them down to the back as Gertie suggests; I prefer the cute retro look of the halter πŸ™‚

Polkadot Playsuit

Instructions are given in the book on how to turn the pants pattern into shorts, but to be honest – they’re not great. They’re brief and vague, so it was a toss up whether or not to use the shorts pattern I’d drafted for myself for my co-ord, or attempt the ones from the book. I ended up going with the ones from the book, and gamely tried to make the alterations described. They came out a bit…interestingly. Most annoyingly, they were about a good 10 cm too small at the waist. I suspect, if I went back and compared, I might find that I accidentally traced it two sizes too small (and I’m not going back and checking because frankly I’d be too annoyed at myself), but I managed to salvage them by adding two five centimetre panels down each side. It wasn’t just the sizing, though – the shape was very odd too. Might have just been my alteration skills, but looking at the line changes suggested, I think you’d still come up with something a bit odd no matter how well you did it. So in future, I think I’ll be sticking to my own shorts patterns.

Polkadot Playsuit

As well as requiring the extra panels in the sides of the shorts, I realised as I was sewing it up that it would probably be too short for me, lengthwise. I have a long torso, with my natural waist sitting right in the middle, and it was clear that the bodice didn’t quite extend quite far down enough and the shorts didn’t come up quite high enough. This was a super easy fix though, using an idea I’d already been toying around with: a waistband! I just cut a strip of fabric 8cm wide (five centimetres plus seam allowances), by my waist measurement plus 3cm. The romper came out exactly the right length, and I really like the look of it πŸ™‚

Polkadot Playsuit

Despite the trials and tribulations of actually getting this romper made and wearable, I love how it turned out, and I’m already planning another one! I made this one out of a polkadot cotton from my stash, left over from an apron I made my sister years ago, and now that I know the pattern (well, most of it) is good, I’m keen to make another. I think my next will be out of the leftover fabric from my Anna dress, and I’ll be changing up the shorts section – I’m going to cut them as circle shorts, for extra fun πŸ˜‰ I’m also considering adding pockets – I’ve never sewn them into a garment before, and I think it’s high time I added them to my sewing repetoire! So expect to hear (and see!) more about that soon. And to anyone else who wants to have a go at a playsuit like this, it could definitely easily be achieved by combining a cute shorts or pants pattern with a favourite top or bodice.

Polkadot Playsuit

Finally the Bimble and Pimble SewvemberΒ on Instagram has finally come to an end! I had a lot of fun doing it, and I loved seeing my fellow sewists and crafter’s makes, tips, triumphs and failures. The month might be over, but you can still check out my pictures here, or see everyone’s using the hashtag #bpsewvember.

Until next time,

Miss Maddy xx

Advertisements

21 comments

  1. allie J. · December 1, 2015

    Adorable! You have a rockin’ bod, girl, you could wear a paper bag–but this is much cuter!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Miss Maddy · December 3, 2015

      Aw thanks Allie! Cute was my aim so I’m glad I succeeded πŸ˜‰

      Like

  2. This is really cute! Despite all the pattern difficulties you had, you’ve fixed it and made it look awesome! Good job!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Miss Maddy · December 3, 2015

      Thanks so much! Sometimes things turn out even better when you had to put some work into them πŸ™‚

      Like

  3. Lucy · December 1, 2015

    super cute summer outfit!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Monique · December 1, 2015

    Oh that is just gorgeous!!!

    Like

  5. Lovely! And so vintage, I think just stand you beside an old car and you are all set!

    Like

  6. sianhannahthomasSian · December 2, 2015

    This is so cute and such a good fit – especially around the bust where I imagine it really needs to be for this pattern! It looks very retro, particularly with the polka dot fabric and the matching headscarf, love it!

    Like

    • Miss Maddy · December 3, 2015

      Thanks Sian! Retro was definitely the vibe I was going for, so I’m glad I succeeded πŸ™‚

      Like

  7. SofΓ­a · December 4, 2015

    That’s sooooo cute!! It fits you so well, and it has some classic pun-up vibe that I really really love! I can’t wait to see your next version of it. You look amazing! πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • Miss Maddy · December 5, 2015

      Thanks so much Sofia! I love the pin-up aesthetic too, that’s definitely what I was going for here πŸ™‚ I’m looking forward to the next version too!

      Like

  8. poppykettle · December 5, 2015

    Looks great!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. cetakz · December 5, 2015

    Nice, dots in my favorite colors, it suits to you.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Pingback: 50s-Style Playsuit
  11. Pingback: A Playful Disposition | Miss Maddy Sews
  12. Pingback: Paradise Playsuit

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s