February 7, 2012

And now for something completely different

Last night, I got some uninterrupted sewing time and I have to say I'm making good progress on the curve collar shirt. That collar is on, it's just sleeves and finishing now. I'm not sure how well I've been doing on documenting important instruction details for any of you who may want to make something similar but we'll have to see about that in another post.

Now, I want to show you the project I sneaked in before starting on the shirt.

Short half circle skirt? No. Culottes. Seriously.

If I had ever made a list of weird items of clothing which are unloved by a vast majority of people to try and make work for me, I'd almost be through with it by now. Shorts? Check. Jumpsuit? Check. Culottes?? And.... check.
Do you know other candidates for that little list? Anything I forgot? I guess I should get to it ;)

The thing is, I had the basic idea for very flared culottes at the back of my head for a year or so.
The fabric has been in my stash for at least as long. Once more, bought very cheaply on one of those everything-must-go crazy sales at the market where I found it among mountains of nasty polyesther. It's largely wool and has a rugged sort of texture. I've liked it all along but I knew it would look frumpy in any kind of 'normal' garment. Go for short or for a strange pattern, it seemed to say.
Last December, when I decided not to use this fabric for a wide skirt, the two finally came together.

I still didn't start drafting the pattern until the last week of Januari. And by then, I had added another element to the mix.

While looking through those vintage Marion magazines, what jumped out to me from the pages of those from 1952/53, where the pockets. Endless variations of cleverly drafted pockets. Not just your normal scoop, slash and patch pockets but also hybrids of those and versions decorated with band and flaps of all different kinds.

I didn't copy the pockets for these culottes from any specific 1950's design, but it was certainly inspired by seeing these (and I may make that dress with the pockets in the detail picture. Those are great, although I can't get my head around how they must be constructed)

Because these are culottes, they feel quite a bit more safe than any skirt this wide and short ever could. I think I could ride a bicycle in these (which, being a Dutch girl, is major priority for me).

Look: I can move without any trouble!

And twirl without indecent exposure!

I'll have to wait and see how well I can actually make these work in my wardrobe, but I think I reached my goal in making a pair of culottes which, at least to me, are fun.

20 comments:

  1. Oh wow. I think you just converted me to the idea of culottes. Those look really good!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I was just thinking they'd be perfect for bike riding. They're beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I had a pair of culottes very like these, in navy, about 20 years ago and loved them. I hung onto them for years and years even after they were far too small for me because I think I kept hoping I might fit back into them one day. I'm very jealous of your new make.

    ReplyDelete
  4. In an astonishing bit of synchronicity, I just wrote a post about making culottes for cycling! http://makeitfakeit.wordpress.com/2012/02/07/bifurcated-slip/

    ReplyDelete
  5. Uau!!!! Lovely! Did you start to scratch it having some pattern as a base or directly over the blank page?

    ReplyDelete
  6. I love them. I've been pondering a split skirt for quite a while. Did you use any guide (tutorial, pattern, book?) to draft your culottes? Did you start with a circle skirt and then add the gusset?

    ReplyDelete
  7. Erm, like seriously LIKE!

    So envious of all the fun you are having with pattern drafting. I'm still waiting to finish my slopers.

    Pictures of the pattern pieces please? Pretty please?

    By the way, I can't seem to comment with my Wordpress account anymore. You might want to check with Blogger in case other non-Blogger readers are also having problem commenting on your posts.

    ReplyDelete
  8. you may have converted me too. those are great!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Culottes are pretty & much safer than short skirts. I love yours. Great job!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Love the culottes! They look great on you :) So smart--I too would never wear a skirt that short/full.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Love it! i just love culottes and do have them though of a longer length, they really are very comfy and still lady like! way to go!

    ReplyDelete
  12. I love them! When I was young, I had a pair very similar to those in a red-and-white plaid. :)

    ReplyDelete
  13. Oh, I like these. Super twirly.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I just found you through Debi's blog. Oh my gosh, these are brilliant and gorgeous-- I never would have guessed they were really shorts! I need to make something like this right away.
    And by the way, your writing is outstanding. Did you grow up speaking English?

    ReplyDelete
  15. I had culottes when I was a kid in the 70's. Your style is much cooler.

    ReplyDelete
  16. This is brilliant! I'm going to make a pair for my daughter-- she's too much on the move to worry about decency!

    ReplyDelete
  17. I'm a bit of a retro-girl at heart and I love these culottes. Wish I was a good enough seamstress to make one. Well done!

    ReplyDelete
  18. They look great.
    When culottes were last at the height on fashion, I had 2 small children and found that they were wonderful. I was able to squat down comfortably to attend to childish needs without exposing anything. I was able to run with them, play etc. Very practical clothing items for when one wants to look a bit dressy but have lots of movement options.

    ReplyDelete
  19. I'm just seeing your culottes now and I love them! They're really great.

    ReplyDelete