A bit of a set back …

Yes, I had a bit of a set back.  As soon as I returned from my lazy holiday in Mexico my back went out.  Walking is fine, standing is fine.  That’s about it.  So … no sitting in my sewing chair.  🙁

I couldn’t help but dream, browse, and plan my future projects though … and I started seriously searching for my DESIGNIN’ DECEMBER outfit.  I know DESIGNIN’ DECEMBER is far away yet, but I am not the type of person to leave anything to the last minute.

I started my search looking for designer fashion on Pinterest.  I managed to “pin” quite a few favourite dresses and jackets to my DESIGNER FASHION board.

I have already seen sewists on Instagram adding lace collars to their makes, so this design is not that far off.


Here is another simple dress with special neckline.


How about a lace yoke? or appliques?


How about this vintage pattern?


Stolen right from the runway … isn’t this the most exquisite design you have ever seen?

Monique Lhuillier Botanical Prints for Resort 2016

For those of you with the talent to reuse, remake and recycle – how about this design?  It’s beyond beautiful!

pinkleandco on etsy

Then I found THE ONE for me!  The beginning of my DESIGNIN’ DECEMBER contribution!  This company (zasue.com) makes beautiful Haori jackets.  Take a look at their website here.


And again, THIS ONE would look lovely with my Haori jacket.  But if I made this one, I would have to alter it to a skirt and a top, instead of the dress.  I always gravitate towards making dresses, but I usually only wear skirts and tops.  Makes no sense whatsoever!  I should make this, but in two pieces.  It can be easily done.

Just look at the pleat on the back and the little bow at the top!

Next to search for the perfect fabrics.  On the way to Mexico, I made a stop in Langley, B.C. and found this – a blue and cream printed upholstery fabric for my Haori jacket (unknown fibres unfortunately) and a 100% polyester called “Samantha Solids”.  A lovely shade of blue, but when I got home, it just seemed a bit lightweight.  Then on another road trip I found this 62% polyester/33% rayon Ponti Di Roma.  It’s actually a darker royal blue than this photo shows and a heavier weight than the 100% polyester.  I think it will be more suitable for a top and skirt.

Now … which patterns?  I’ve already made two beach cover ups with this pattern, McCall’s M7200, here and here, so it is familiar to me and would work well for my Haori jacket.

For the dress, I’m going to start with this pattern, McCall’s M7574, but make the dress into two pieces.  There are already instructions, etc. to make the top only in this pattern.

When tracing the pattern and cutting the fabric, I used the shape of the top of the dress for my top …


and made the skirt from the shape of the bottom of the dress.


When it came to the pleat in the back of the top, I added an extra inch on to the back seam at the fold line.  I’ll show you how it looks when I sew it up.  This pattern has the funniest shaped sleeves I have ever seen, but I can already see how they go together.


So, unfortunately, no sewing this last week, but I did trace a few patterns and cut out a few fabrics for future projects, including DESIGNIN’ DECEMBER, standing at the kitchen table!

Have you been thinking about DESIGNIN’ DECEMBER?  If you are curious, check it out here and here.  Elle Gee Makes and Emma and her Machine have already got their entries finished!

Happy Sewing!


40 thoughts on “A bit of a set back …

  1. You’ve been busy! Lovely collection of inspiration garments, I’m looking forward to seeing the results.

    1. Haha, busy just looking. Hopefully soon I can actually sit down and sew the few things I have cut out!

  2. There is no keeping a good woman down! Sorry to hear about your back )-: That is a lovely design, with the little ribbon. I hope you are back to your (complete) old self again soon!

    1. Thank you! If I can’t sew, it is always fun to dream.

  3. Ooh, this is the first time I’ve heard of Designin’ December….I’d love to make something for it!
    Lovely inspiration photos by the way…so sorry about your back though. Hopefully you’ll be on the mend soon though and will be able to do more than stand and trace

    1. We would love to see your Designer Copy! There is lots of time to plan and sew. Just leave me a comment when you are done, share the link, hashtag it #DESIGNINDECEMBER. There’s lots of ways to be included – Instagram too! Thanks for the good vibes, I can’t wait to get back to the sewing machine!

  4. Hope your back is feeling better. I love both of your choices for Design December and I will try and take part this time, last year I failed miserably to make the Monique Lhuiller jacket you have hear. If I start in August there is a good chance I will make it 🙂

    1. You know I was wondering where I had seen that jacket before! I think it might be a challenge to put together, but it is one of my all time favourites! I find It’s always good for me to start early. Last year we had a late entry, so I told her I would save it for this year. I don’t know if that’s cheating or not, but I guess I make the rules! 😂 I think it took me a year to make my wedding dress – that was years ago too… when I didn’t have any other responsibilities! 😆. Thanks for the good wishes!

  5. Oooo ~ such eye candy! So sorry to hear you’re not up to sitting and sewing (sounds peculiar, but you know what I mean.) Hope you get healed up right fast. Meanwhile, how was Mexico? Did your outfits work well? Any photos of you two lounging by the pool or on a beach? xx

    1. There are so many beautiful designs to look at, aren’t there! Mexico was fabulous, and CHICHEN ITZA was even MORE fabulous! My previous post does have a bit of a travelogue, with photos! I was very pleased my me-made swimsuit didn’t unravel at the seams!

      1. Thank you so much for referring to your previous post, which somehow escaped my system. OK, holiday pics now drooled over and am glad no costume malfunctioned! Take great care of you! xx

  6. I love your inspiration dress and can’t wait to see the finished project! So sorry about your back! It sounds as though you’re using your ‘down’ time wisely though, planning a spectacular make. Pinterest is such a fun way to prime the creative pump. I could spend hours and hours on it…And thanks for the shout out in this post!

    1. Thank you! I’ll work on my DESIGNIN’ DECEMBER garment slowly, but I’ll get it done! It is great fun searching for the next project. I love giving a shout out to all DD contributors. I’ve make a note about your contribution so I can show everyone in DESIGNIN’ DECEMBER!

  7. Lots of lovely garments here. You have used your time well.
    I hope your back is better soon.

    1. Thank you, feeling slowly better every day.

  8. Sorry to hear about your back. You might try sewing with your machine at standing height – maybe put a sewing machine on the kitchen counter? I tried sewing with a machine at standing height once after someone recommended it as being more ergonomic, and it worked well, but I prefer sewing with treadle machines, so I didn’t leave an electric machine set up like that. Now that I’m thinking about it though, maybe I’ll raise up the table I have my serger and coverstitch machine on, since those are electric. That would give me more storage space underneath the table, too. Hmm, and then I wouldn’t have to squeeze a chair over in that corner – the problems that come with trying to cram too many vintage sewing machines into my little house 🙂 I’m having some great ideas as I’m typing here!

    I’ve been using my computer at a standing height for several years for ergonomic reasons and to avoid sitting so much. I got tired at first, but then I got used to it. Standing is better for you and burns extra calories, too!

    1. I could just sense the ideas rolling off your fingers into the internet! I have seen standing office desks before but didn’t really understand why – now it makes more sense. I’ll try the standing sewing first this weekend because I am getting crabby without my sewing projects. Thanks!

  9. So sorry about your back. I am loving your plans for Designin’ December. I might have to start thinking about this, but probably in November ;)!

    1. My back is getting better every day, I hope! 😃💪 I will be keeping my eyes 👀 open for posts and pictures!

  10. I’d never heard of Designing December! I will have to check this out! Feel better soon!

    1. Yes take a look see, think about it, and join in! And thank you for the good vibes!

  11. Linda I hope your back is better now. I liked all of your choices for Designing December. Can’t wait to see which one(s) you finish.
    PS. I see the Minion made a cameo appearance. 🙂

    1. It’s getting there – thanks for asking! Seems the only thing I have difficulty doing now is cleaning out the litter boxes! And Jerry the Minion had so much fun in Mexico with me he keeps following me around now!

  12. Am a little late here catching up on your blog but hope your back is better. I think another holiday would tune it up perfectly but less partying with Jerry will probably help. I saw all your material first hand and it is beautiful, can’t wait to see the finished project.

    1. Thanks Rose! Yes that Jerry is a brat, isn’t he. Presently he is hanging on my bulletin board at work. I’m giving him a taste of “real life”! (His arm is still bandaged up and broken too.)

  13. Wishing you a speedy recovery – I’m looking forward to seeing how this project turns out, too.

    1. Thank you! It’s not due until (DESIGNIN’) DECEMBER so I’ve got lots of time! 😃👍

  14. I hope your back is feeling better. That’s a bummer not being able to sew. 😔 Well the dress that got my attention was the 2nd from the top–the green with the beads at the neckline and the model is holding a light-blue clutch. Get better soon.

    1. Thanks for asking, it’s getting there! I’m doing exercises now at least. I agree, that green was truly beautiful!

  15. corrineappleby May 28, 2017 — 12:51 pm

    Sorry to hear about your back. That’s rubbish. Hope it gets better soon. I love your ‘Designin’ December’ challenge (although I have yet to take part) and can’t wait to see the entries. I may have to pinch that beautiful dress in your post – the deep green one with the neckline. Stunning! Looking forward to seeing your make take shape. Looks like it’s going to be good!

    1. Lots of sewists have their eyes on the green one. It is popular! Maybe you should sew it up for DESIGNIN’ DECEMBER! Thanks for the good wishes!

  16. I hope your back is feeling better! I am just in awe of your organization. The colours you have selected are just beautiful.

    1. I’ve just been able to get back to sewing (sitting down for a few hours straight). Thanks for asking! I don’t FEEL organized but sometimes I just have to stop what I’m doing and organize! 😂

  17. So glad you had such a wonderful Mexican vacation! But I’m sorry to hear about your naughty back. Hoping it’s on the mend by now. I’m very impressed with your attitude, and how you’re keeping your sewing mojo even while incapacitated. (I had to sigh when you mentioned that you’re not one to wait till the last minute. That’s what I do every single time!! Someone needs to give me a swift kick.) Always look forward to DD, to see how you make your copy (it’s always so good) and all the contributors. Fingers crossed I can do it this year. 🙂 Take care Linda.

    1. Thank you for the nice thoughts. Join in! Your COPY doesn’t have to be elaborate, just copy something you would like to have. Cheers!

  18. I like your choice of designer clothing. You really are organised to be starting now.
    I am very interested in the repurposed jacket. Maybe I should have a go at that. I will think about it

    1. Thank you! I find the repurposing to be even more of a challenge than starting with the fabrics, etc. and instructions. I am in awe! We’d love to see your Designer Copy! 🎉💃🕺🎊

      1. I will think about it and see what I can come up with

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