Sturm und drang: Woman’s Wonsie

This week I set myself the challenge of making something from a piece of fabric I was given by a former colleague at my “exit party” last fall. I call the fabric “sturm und drang”. Here’s a pic: IMAG0337 I think you can see the reason for the name. Just to make sure, I checked my closet and saw that there is, indeed, a total absence of print clothing, except for a few tone-on-tone jacquards and stripes. So, this would be a first. I like several of the many, many colours in this fabric, but from a distance it seems dominated by brown splotches that I don’t really care for. I thought about the vogue 8786 pattern that I used for “sackcloth and slink”, which allows for fabric matching because of the panels and yokes. I also considered that, given the choice between wearing a knitted top and a woven blouse, nine days out of ten I’ll choose the knit. Why not match this print with a solid knit that brings out the turquoise and produce a comfortable … uh, wonsie? I’m trying, I’m really trying to use the word “dress”, but I hate the word.Ā  It suggests everything I hate about cultural ideas of “femininity”. I know it’s just a word!! Enough, carry on. While I was giving myself challenges, I decided to underline the print fabric so that light wouldn’t shine through it. Gawd knows I don’t want to wear a slip, of all things. I chose a gauzy pale blue cotton from a turban I purchased last summer at a theatre sale. IMAG0338 It turned out that underlining didn’t create any extra work to speak of. I pinned the pieces to the print fabric and used an interlock stitch to both sew them together and finish the raw edges at the same time. And I discovered that the print panels had a much nicer ‘hand’ after the underling than before. And also they were a better match in terms of body and weight to the doubleknit I purchased. I also decided to replace the back seam below the yoke with a button placket and have buttons and buttonholes running up the back. Thankfully I then had an even better idea, and made a fake button placket. That’s not terribly clear, is it? I sewed buttons through all layers without bothering with buttonholes. And while I was being innovative, I decided to use a few different colours of buttons. IMAG0339Okay,here’sĀ  the final product. It’s not entirely me, I think. But it’s a move in a direction I’d like to go. IMG_0936 I tried to style it up a bit. IMG_0939 Good use of a prop, eh? IMG_0938 Pretending to reach up to the curtain rod, okay?? I like the back — possibly more than the front. The good news is that I’m wearing this, uh, wonsie, as I’m putting together this post. It’s comfortable. And not too fancy to be at-home wear.

You’d think that by the time a woman reaches her cronehood (yes, that’s a good thing), she’d know how to dress. I have to say that I don’t really. I’ve spent most of my life in jeans, cords, tshirts and sweaters. It was boring. And I’ve never found jeans comfortable enough to wear in the house. So at-home wear tended to be sweatpants and fleece tops. I think it’s important how I present myself both to myself and to the world. I’d say that as I’m sewing, I’m searching my way toward a presentation that accurately represents me, that’s comfortable and aesthetically pleasing. Stay tuned and watch me progress toward “crone robes”, leading the way in fashion for the boomer wise woman šŸ™‚


4 thoughts on “Sturm und drang: Woman’s Wonsie”

  1. Felicia – well done for trying a new look. This one has a lot of promise. I agree that the print is very pretty and putting a print with a strong colour that exists in the pattern is a good technique to minimise the colour you like less. You have a good figure, especially your legs and slim hips, and while this is a great body for trousers, you also look good in straight skirts and dresses (sorry, but it is true). The belt and shoes work well, but the big scarf is somehow too bulky with the rest of the outfit, in my view. Could you try a slimmer scarf in a deeper shade – perhaps a darker turquoise, or even the same brown as your belt? Otherwise this is a big successes. And I find underlining is extra work so your technique sounds very useful. Thanks!


  2. Wow, a comment both on dress and on the styling! Thank you. I agree with you about the scarf. I got the idea to underline from your post about different ways to line. You didn’t specify how to do it, and if you think about writing such a post in future, I’ll be sure to read it. There must be more than one way. I also got the idea of different buttons from one of your posts, so thanks again šŸ™‚ I’m working on a clutch of skirts now, so we’ll see what happens with those.


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