This post contains affiliate links.
Folks, I frickin’ did it! These shorts and this sweater combined make my best-fitting handmade outfit to date, and I’m not too proud to say I’m proud! Read on for more photos of the finished outfit, and learn what kind of trouble wearing the wrong size bra can get a gal in to.
For those who read this blog closely and faithfully (bless you), I fully realize it is very much not still Me Made May, but you know what? It’s okay! The Boardwalk Duet and Fernlace Pullover were part of my May making goals this year, but at the end of the day, done is better than not done, right? At the end of the day (even if that day coincides with the end of summer), I got to wear my handmade beachwear on the shore of Lake Michigan on at least one beautiful August day. :)
Sewing Pattern: 1940s Boardwalk Duet from Decades of Style / Main fabric: Daisies from Windham Fabrics in Blue / Lining: Pure Elements from Art Gallery Fabrics in Moonstone / Buttons: daisy shank buttons
The 1940s Boardwalk Duet from Decades of Style was a pretty quick sewing project that didn’t take a ton of yardage. It was a great way for me to learn buttonholes for the first time ever, and making the top taught me some valuable lessons about sizing and fit.
As you can see, the top of my daisy-riffic take on the Boardwalk Duet is too big. Going forward, I need to decide ahead of time whether I intend to wear a bra with a top like this or not. And since I don’t have the flattest chest in the world, I need to consider what exactly I’m looking for in terms of support the next time I make a bralette or other bodice I plan on wearing on its own. Simple errors and insights, but for the sake of everyone’s journey to a well-fitted wardrobe, I’ll share them just the same. :)
The shorts, on the other hand, are super duper comfy and fit me well. I don’t think they’re the most flattering pair of shorts I’ve ever worn in my whole life, but I love the feel of the fit. The shorts hit my waist exactly right, they’re tall enough that I don’t get wedgies, and they’re a comfy length. I loved pairing them with my new Fernlace Pullover to achieve a beachy, late summer 1940s look!
Fernlace Pullover (revisited)
The idea of knitting the same sweater pattern more than once may sound daunting, but I couldn’t recommend it more, particularly if you’re working to achieve a better fit for your handmade sweaters. Case in point: This light blue sweater is my second go at knitting the Fernlace Pullover, a vintage knitting pattern from 1938. In a previous post, I shared a gloriously yellow version of the same sweater, sharing the issues I ran into with its fit. Namely I made it too wide and overall a little too big.
Talkin’ ’bout bras again…
Turns out, the issue with both the Boardwalk Duet top and my first take on the Fernlace Pullover are, dun dun DUHNNNN, THE SAME EXACT THING! I was working from a bust measurement taken wearing my pre-weight loss bra, which is two cup sizes larger than my new bras. So even though, yes, my body is objectively the same size in my old and new bras, the bra itself was affecting the measurement.
Breaking it down in numbers.
- That’s right, yours truly sewed a top for a 38″ bust and was “surprised” when a 36″ bust didn’t work out so well wearing it.
- This brain genius also knit an entire sport weight sweater for a 38″ bust, and you can surmise the rest.
But never fear! I am OBSESSED with my light blue Fernlace Pullover. The puff sleeves of my sweater hit precisely where they should to stay in place. My gauge was good for both sweaters, but I was simply knitting the wrong size. As my body has changed, I’m getting used to visually estimating what clothes fit me now. Particularly as I blog about new additions to my handmade wardrobe, I am now much better at understanding what will and won’t fit the shape of my body. I still have a TON to learn, but on the far side of a summer that began with, “Hey, let’s try Me Made May to wrap my head around what works for me and my new shape,” I’m feeling massively more confident in my sewing skills and fit comprehension, and it’s making me feel so much better about myself and how I look. It’s great!