Be Bold, Be Fierce, Be YOU!


From the Boardroom to the Ballroom! Fabric Mart Challenge – See what the other ladies made! (LINK HERE)


The day to night look was such a bit of a challenge in deciding what I really wanted to create to add to my collection of vibrant colors.  I wanted to create 2 pieces that fits my personal style; one garment that I was familiar with creating and another one that I always wanted to create and had fears.   The idea of creating and  wearing a sweetheart bodice with my love of skirts was ideal for the night look as I could cover with a jacket or cardigan from my closet to wear during the day.  I chose to select vibrant colors that can transition from one season to the next.  I wanted to show versatility omitting the typically greys and dark tones that we tend to wear in the business arena.


The Sweetheart Bodice I am in love with bodice, bustier and corsets and opted to create a sweetheart bodice with loops to secure the back.  I choose to use a pattern that I purchased on Etsy from craftyalex  shop (here) that I can reuse and modify for future projects.  The pattern is a sweetheart cut line with panels that would work perfect with the off white denim stretch fabric from my stash.  This pattern was so easy to cut as it has 4 pieces, and great visuals with clear easy instructions that I could follow. I watched several YouTube videos before on sweetheart bustier and bodice constructions to learn how to create the case for the  boning and other techniques such as top stitching to have a clean and smooth finish.  I opted to remove the zipper for this project as I plan to wear this bodice over a fitted classic shirt in the future.


Even though this was an easy sew, the bust area curve and loops required careful execution for a smooth clean finish.  The loops and the details in the back took double the time than it took to sew the bodice.  I had prior knowledge working  with loops from a previous project but opted to use the perfect white cording from my stash.  I carefully used my tape (as a placement test for the loops) and the circumference of my sharpie to ensure that each loop had the exact measurement.  I then taped to ensure placement and position and pinned to my dress form before hand stitching all 12 loops.


 This task was extremely tedious as I measured the markings 1 inch apart and then  and used a needle to fully secure before going to the machine to finish the project. I opted to stitch the loop on the inside lining, folding over about ½ inch to close it up and then double stitching to complete the finish. The simplicity cording that I found at Joann Fabrics was absolutely perfect and gave it a beautiful finish.  


I was in limbo about adding more details or creating straps but the beauty and simplicity of the white on the dress form was spectacular with the bold colors from the skirt. Looking back and having worn the bodice all day before the shoot, I would have added boning to all seams to have a more structured look. The instructions only required boning for the front bust area. I noticed that after a while, the denim started to stretch even more than I anticipated. I am very happy with the technique and finish but the next time I create this project, I would consider straps and adding boning in between each panel. I would also add a single piece of fabric to cover the straps in the back.

The Gathered Full Circle Skirt – Ankara Print (Holland/Dutch wax fabric).


I really wanted to use up the last of my ankara print (cotton) fabric that I purchased this past summer in Washington DC on vacation (Thanks Feesewcrafty for taking me to the store!).  I love sewing skirts with bold prints because of its vibrant color palettes and endless possibilities with tops.  The ankara fabric has a lot of structure and is typically used to create hats, blazers, skirts and dresses.  I love the hues as I can wear this skirt both in the fall and spring here in Florida.  I wanted a super full circle skirt so I opted to cut a circle skirt that was double the measurement of my waist and gather it.  


Cutting the circle skirt was a bit of a challenge on my table so I opted to use my floor instead.  I carefully used my tape measure crawling around in a circle and marking with a chalk.  I then used my curve ruler to connect the markings for the front piece.


 Once the front was done, the headache of matching the seams of the prints for the back took a bit of concentration.  Mind you based on the waist measurement that I used, I had to cut 2 pieces on fold and made my life easier but cutting 1 and placing the other on top as both pieces were identical. I was able to use almost 6 yards and did not even have enough left for a skirt for my daughter.




The gathering technique that I choose was using the sewing machine  to create a single loose stitch and changing my settings to stitch length 5 and tension 3 so that it would be easier to gather.  I simply hand gathered the front separate from the back based on my waist measurements and then secured it with a tight stitch before connecting the seams.  I know having a gather foot would have made my life so much easier. The remaining fabric was used create to create a 2.5 inch waistband. I opted to add an extra inch to my waist measurement  as I knew that I will be wearing the skirt with a lightweight sweater or cardigan tucked in. After the skirt was gathered and the waistband was attached, I decided to shorten by cutting 2 inches off. I measures again from the waistband to ensure that the length matched all around.


My Sense of Style and love for Ankara Prints!


Shoes: Steve Madden (here)

Cardigan: NY and Company (here)

Bag: Zara (old)

In am in love with modern day fashion using bold prints and colors with a touch of the ’50s intertwined with a bit of ’70s flair. This look that I choose to create and style with my cardigan is  oh so perfect for a board meeting and a night out salsa dancing after a wine tasting event. I truly enjoyed creating 2 pieces for this project that is a true reflection of my personal style. I had an amazing time capturing the beauty and flow of this look especially the skirt. I am in love with bold prints that make a statement the minute you walk through the door. The geometric shapes, the pattern details, the colors, the texture and flow is oh so perfect for the transition of my style from day to night.  In closing I will continue to be bold, be fierce, but most importantly, be me!



Amazing SHOTS captured by Michael: Photos by Ernie


Follow him on Instagram (photoernie)




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