Tuesday, September 25, 2012

An Alteration, A Copycat and Some Penguins

It took some doing to get Sunday's outfit together. The inspiration for my outfit is a page from the September issue of All You magazine:

(Sorry for the poor quality of the pic...I could not find a photo of the outfit on the All You website, so the best I could do was scan the magazine.)

I love the Southwestern look of this comfortable ensemble! Being a frugal hausfrau, I have been searching for the past few weeks for the components of the outfit at thrift stores. I did purchase a scarf at regular price from Target, but not the one pictured - my Target had that one in stock, but it was too large for my frame. I found a chambray shirt for a quarter at the once-a-month Catholic church thrift store; deep red pants for a few dollars at Goodwill; wonderfully comfortable moccasins on eBay; and accessories from my own collection.

First, the thrifted finds needed to be altered to fit me properly. The pants were hemmed up about three inches, an easy fix, but the shirt needed some major work. Here's the fit before:

It's kind of hard to tell from the picture, but the shirt is too big in the bust and waist area, but tight across my tummy (notice I didn't button that last button?) and it poofs out like a balloon in the back (forgot to get a pic of the back). Plus, the hem of the shirt hits at a bad point on my hips. An alteration idea came to me one night while I was laying there not sleeping, so the next day, here's how I implemented it...

 I folded it up several inches all the way around the middle at the waist, thereby raising the tight tummy area up so it would be closer to my actual waistline, and raising the hemline at the same time. It took a couple of pinnings to find just the right spot for this up-take. Then I sewed it up, with the excess fabric on the inside.

 Next, I pinned two darts in the back, to draw in the waist and eliminate the bubble effect. Again, it took a couple of tries to get the correct position and amount to gather. At first, I was going to make traditional darts (kind of a C-shaped seam from the top of the shoulder blade area to several inches below the waist), but that is very difficult to achieve on an already-constructed shirt. And so I simply sewed over the existing seam I'd just created at the waist, thereby securing the tucks.

The fit is much better now!
 Notice I can button the bottom button now? And yes, the shirt is a bit rumpled...had to take pics after we got home from church. That is one bad thing about chambray - it wrinkles easily.
The back fits better now, too, although Some Postman neglected to tell me there was a wrinkle right at my butt. Sigh...and I'm wondering if I should reduce the curve of the hemline. Now that I see the back view, I'm not sure it's all that flattering. Perhaps I will do some further alterations....

And here is the entire copycat outfit:

The "bracelet" is a turquoise necklace from my MIL's collection that I wrapped around my wrist.

After church, Some Postman took me to the City, where we had lunch at Red Robin (love the sweet potato fries and the cherry Cokes!) and then went to visit the zoo. The penguins will be leaving the zoo at the end of the month, and I had been wanting to see them all summer. Penguins are just sooooo adorable!

The Frumpy Hausfrau and some napping penguins

I'm a Penguin!


Grammy Goodwill said...

These colors look good on you. I can tell that you've lost weight, too. Great job!

Bflowers said...

Such a pretty penguin! The outfit looks really good on you! I agree that the back hem line of the shirt needs some alterations but wouldn't know what to do with it myself. I'm sure you'll come up with something clever though!

Melissa said...

Thanks! As for the shirt, I think I'll just level off the curve. Not make it completely straight, but take away the scoop look.