Wednesday, February 19, 2014

The Something Suit - It Begins...

Obviously I'm having trouble coming up with a name for this suit... anyone got any ideas???

This suit is the first of many suits I hope to make this year.  And you know me, I don't want to start with something easy!

I decided to recreate this suit:

This suit is for sale on Etsy at FabGabs Vintage.  You can see the listing here, and it is being modeled by the divine Solanah who blogs here.

I was thinking I was going to have to buy a pattern and then modify it to have the features of the suit... and then I found this: 

I was gobsmacked!  I hit the Add To Cart and Purchase buttons so fast  it was a blur!  There is another one for sale here if anyone is interested!  Anyway, I didn't really care that it wasn't going to fit me straight off the pattern...

Last thing to hunt down was the fabric.  I can't seem to find a decent place to buy wool suiting in Australia, so I went to my go-to website for wool fabrics (and other amazing things) - Gorgeous Fabrics.  It seems that grey pinstriped wool isn't very popular at the moment, and I had a choice of one.  Its a blend of wool, rayon and a bit of lycra, so its got stretch.  While I would have LIKED something a bit thicker with no stretch, I bought it anyway, and I'm glad I did.  Its got a lovely hand and drape so its perfect for this pattern.

The really fun bit was picking the accent fabric, and the lining fabric!

The top fabric is the lining fabric, a delicious raspberry pink satin.  The middle fabric is a scrumptious slightly darker raspberry pink velveteen which I will use for the bows and the buttons.  The bottom fabric is my charcoal grey suiting.


The first job with the pattern was to do a muslin to see how bad the fit was.  This is how bad.

The back is ok-ish!

err... the front is not...

So I did some measurements and cut out another one...while I was at it I added 1.5" to the side of the back bodice:

Much better!

I was happy with the fit of this one, so I attacked it with a texta to mark out the princess line piece with the stripes going the other way.  Then I cut the pieces to make new pattern pieces.

Then to test the theory, I cut the pieces out of more scrap pieces of fabric and sewed them back together.

(Is this sounding like a bit of a process?  Cause it was...)

Hooray!!!  But have you noticed the oopsie that I did on the first muslin?  There was a fold line on the perforated pattern that had me fold a couple of inches over all the way up the inside edge... this is wrong.  But sadly I'd already stitched this muslin together by the time I'd worked it out.  So I unpicked it - again - and cut a bit off and stitched it together.  And thats when it looked like the photo above.

This shows the changes I made to my pattern pieces

The purple bits are the bits I cut off the second muslin to make it fit properly.

And then I realised I should really do a muslin of the sleeve too, since I'd made the adjustments to that part of the pattern as well.  I added some width to the sleeve and redrew the cap and inserted it into the muslin

Hooray!  It fit!!  I did have to taper the sleeve a bit, and cut it shorter to make it more bracelet length like the inspiration suit, than full length like the original.  BUT IT WAS DONE!

I unpicked it all and ironed it all flat and turned it into a paper pattern so I could use it again in the future.

It was enough work for one day I can tell you!

So about the name for this suit... can anyone come up with something???  I keep thinking raspberry something, but all inspiration has left me at this point!!! hahaha



  1. Rasberry Bow-kay LOL (I admit, I was singing it to the Prince"raspberry beret" song *giggles*).
    I was thinking about the bows. Because the suit is all about the bows! Maybe Raspberry Bows? Raspberry Sorbet? Hidden raspberry? Bowtastic? I'm no good at this! Oh well I do love the look of the pattern!

    1. I agree with you Rachel - I have had that song running through my head a bit!

  2. I don't have any ideas for the name, but it's going to look yummy!

  3. Raspberry Delight?

    (Rachel, I have Raspberry Delight running through my head too!)

    1. mmmm now I can't stop tasting turkish delight.....

    2. I must have too! I meant to say to Rachel "Raspberry Beret"!!

  4. Well it is berry suitable...

  5. Oh, the naming of garments--I admit it flummoxes me too at times. This suit looks wonderful, and I love the look of the original too. I'm sure yours will be lovely!!

    What about Silver Berry Siren Suit?

    1. Most of the time it comes to me easily, but I'm really struggling with this one! Thank goodness I have such a wonderful resource of people I can ask!

  6. I'm liking the suggestions "Silver Berry Siren Suit" and "The Suitaberry Project". Whatever name you come up with, the suit will look fantastic! I hate doing muslin tests but most times it's well worth the extra effort!

    Emily's Vintage Visions

    1. There is no way I could have made this suit without doing muslins sadly! Maybe if the pattern had been my size it might have been different... but probably not - the fabric was expensive!!!

  7. I love it! It's so beautiful! Thanks for posting the pics. I'm learning how to sew garments, and it's always helpful to see pics! I LOVE the suit! It's so perfect :)

  8. Bon Bon -we used to get raspberry ones when I was little and they were the colour of your lining. Beautiful suit.


  9. Gorgeous and I featured it in my Retro DIY Appreciation Theme on Sassy Sewing Bees ❀