Monday, 24 November 2014

A Suit (of Sorts...)

Believe it or not, I'm a responsible person at work, in charge of 11 people and all of their training, payroll, issues, etc. For years, I've been able to get away with not dressing like a grown up. Skirts with a cardigan and the odd dress have been fine but recently I've been sifting through my work clothes and I think they need a bit of attention. So for this project I thought I'd break my own personal rules and make a (sorta) suit for work. 

It's a combination of patterns - for the top I used this bolero from Vogue 8721, which is fast becoming an old-standby:

I used the bolero on the bottom right

Then I used the skirt from this pattern, a 1970's does the 1940's Simplicity 6110:

I made the skirt with the pockets, but I love all the styling on this pattern - I might have to make everything!

I used some black twill that I picked up at Fabricland in Bristol. (Which by the way was great - check it out if you're ever in the Bristol area.) Not sure what it's made from, I think it's a wool and poly mix, but the weight and drape was perfect for this project.

We're currently experiencing cold but these photos were taken a few weeks ago when it was unusually warm:

It looks like a pretty simple project, and it should have been if I hadn't put my self-drafted bolero lining together wrong way round, and then stretched the right front facing out of shape. This made the jacket sit all wobbly on one side, but was fixed with a lot of unpicking and re-cutting of the lining and facing, and some sneaky piecing together.

Inside view of the bolero - you can just see a sneaky seam on the lower right of the photo where I had to piece a replacement facing together.
The curves at the front wouldn't stay 'sharp' when I ironed them; I was already hugely frustrated by this outfit, so I decided to use spray starch on them. The directions on the can says not to use it on dark fabrics, but I tested it and it seemed fine. Result - lovely front curves! (sounds a bit rude...)

What's so great about the skirt is the pockets, which are usually filled with scraps of scribbled on paper at the end of a days work:

I've been a bit slow at posting recently, so this outfit has already had a few outings at work. It's my new favourite work outfit! It sounds odd, but there's something about having a matching ensemble which makes me feel 'grown up'. Maybe suits aren't such a bad thing after all...

See you soon!


  1. Ooh I love this outfit! That bolera is lovely & the skirt looks great too. I've a few work skirts without pockets & they just annoy me as I've nowhere to put the bits of paper, pencils etc that build up during the day!

  2. What a great suit! Pockets are essential in work clothes, I get a bit cross when I go to put something in a pocket that isn't there. And I love everything on the Simplicity pattern too! Lynne

  3. abitofanenthusiast25 November 2014 at 19:58

    Love the not-quite-but-nearly suit idea- it's ever so fab! And I agree about that gorgeous 70's artwork- it's lush!

  4. Nice front curves ;-) I discovered spray starch this summer and haven't looked back!


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