Tuesday, February 26, 2013

adventures in black and white...the next version.

I like doing this… At first I wondered if it would be a little boring for me to embrace the black and white thing since it’s my norm for me to wear black and white, but this trending Spring look is really challenging me to approach at these two neutrals in a completely different way.

My black and white project this week uses once again, a peplum….Are you tired of this peplum thing yet? Not me!

I imagined a peplum in black and white, and set my mind to working it out, using New Look 6130.

With the princess seams, it was pretty much a no-brainer to do the bodice. But the weight of my white ponte was, well, not weighty enough. I underlined it with a swimwear lining so it wasn’t quite so see-through.

Underlining is a very good thing. We should use it more often.
To continue that black and white theme through to the peplum, I needed to split it in parts. I cut the pattern apart where the peplum skirt tuck lies, so my seam is hidden…and then sewed it all together.


 By the way, I underlined the white section here as well.

Added an exposed zipper to the back:

My mistake? Without even thinking, I put that zipper in. I just grabbed a fashion zipper from my zipper stash and went to work.  I was so careful. It was a flawless installation, and well, after seeing it completed, I realized that for a better style effect, I should have done that zipper the full length of the back or shorter. Arg. Well, that's what a jacket is for.

I thought I had a great fit, and then the neckline went all wonky on me.

I think it's because of two different things:

1. The type and weight of the fabric. I used a lighterweight ponte, like I mentioned above. Even with underlining and interfacing, the fabric just did not support that open split neckline. I even tried using a sturdier interfacing, but it had the opposite effect and made it flop even more. So I went back to the original interfacing. I believe this would have been much nicer in a v-neck or bateau neckline. In fact, I almost took the whole bodice apart to do a v-neck but by the time I was at that point, I just plain gave up on it. I was "THIS close" to throwing it in the trash can.

2. Because of the structure of the neckline, I should have done a bit more of a full bust adjustment. I wonder if that would have made it lay better? See those drag lines just across the top of the bust?

The other issue? Now that I look at it in the photos, I can see that this top with the inverted triangle of white really emphasizes my inverted triangle body. ( I think I read somewhere that it's also called a strawberry shape...isn't that a nice name?) Again, I could throw a jacket over it, but, oh, that neckline.

Well, I'm going to be perfectly honest with you. I'm guessing I won't wear this top, unless I throw a jacket over it. I think I would wear it if it were made in two fabrics that were more similar in tone and color. So it's not SO "look at me, I'm black and white!" It would probably be a more flattering look for me, given the inverted triangle thing.  I'm going to try it with a print skirt that I'm working on right now, and then maybe, just maybe, this peplum top and I can work something out.

So, all in all, I must confess, I do like this pattern for a peplum top with princess seams. It really gives you a great opportunity for color blocking and fitting. I may work with this one again in the future, but for right now, it's not my friend and we need some space.

So speaking of peplums, I have been to Joann’s THREE times looking for the newest Lisette pattern Simplicity 1666. I'm actually liking how the seaming is on it...might be better for my body shape.

I MUST get this pattern! I have the perfect fabric for the dress!

Looking forward to my next adventure in black and white!


  1. Lynn you always look very striking and this top is no exception. I agree though, the Lisette pattern with straight through princess seams might be better for your very inverted triangle shape (I'm inverted too). That way with the peplum your shoulders may look less broad - love your slim legged pants, though - they really suit you with the peplum over the top.

  2. Looks to me like that neckline might be salvaged with a cute button and loop closure.

  3. Lynne, I think it looks pretty good and I like the black/white idea. What if you just did a solid black peplum? Then with the split neck, just fold down the parts that are flopping and stitch them down. It will give you the v-neck look without lots of adjustment. I like the top with your bright blue pants.

  4. I wonder if you could unstitch a little section and insert something like thin riglene (plastic boning) along the neckline to work in a similar way to the little plastic inserts in men's shirt collars. Maybe not boning, but something that would work in a similar way?

    As for the wide white portion in the shoulder area, could you put some black lace in a sort of scallop from the edge of the neckline to the bottom edge of the white at the armscye? something with a decorative scallop would give the visual line of a shoulder princess.

    Or a yoke shaped piece of black scallop lace which goes from side to side at the same point of the armscy but follows the neckline including the split opening? It would dress it up more than you intended, but it might at least change it to be something you prefer.

    If you aren't a lacey lace person, you might find a geometric kind.
    Sandy in the UK

    1. I tried your idea of adding something sturdier in that v area, and it just mad it flop, sadly. I do think that your idea of creating a panel that similates a shoulder princess. That would be a perfexct solution, but I just don't know that I have it in me to put any more time or effort into this one!
      Good ideas, though!

  5. Very cute Lynne. You know I'm a sucker for a peplum.

  6. I feel relieved that you realise the 2 tones did not suit your figure type. As soon as I saw the photo I thought it looked very unflattering on you and you always look so nice. Its a hard call to admit when something you have so lovingly invested so much time making actually doesn't suit. Its strange because in theory having the black on the sides should be slimming but like you said the colour block may have been too dramatic. As I say "onwards to the next project which I'm sure will be fantastic".

  7. How is the fit through the shoulders? It looks to me like the sleeves need to come in a little bit which might tighten up the neckline.

    1. I wondered that too. but I also wondered if bringing the sleeves in would spread the neckline open more? I'll have to play around with that idea.

  8. oh so what about the neckline..YOU LOOK MAHHHHVALOUS

  9. The neckline? What about a small button and loop closure at the top so it doesn't fall open?

    1. I think I have to agree with this solution. Thanks Elizabeth!

  10. I really like the idea of colour blocking and I also like Lori's idea of pinning down the top floppy bits and maybe even add a little details on them when they are pinned down. But then again I know what it's like when you're over working on a project and ready to move onto the next one. I love the new pattern you've chosen :)

  11. Not only do I want your outfit, I just wrote down the Lisette to buy- you gorgeous enabler, you!

  12. Lynn, you do colour blocking so well!


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