Friday, March 11, 2011

Dressing for the office...

No really, this is what I wore to the office, today!  I know it appears that I spend all of my time gallivanting about in the great outdoors, and let's face it, the pictorial evidence is here that I am out and about communing with nature most days... but I do actually have a job.  Very fortunately for me we have an office at home and I am quite allowed to dress for my office anyway I choose.  Every now and again I do feel compelled to dress up all smartish, like I am "going to work" and need to feel appropriately apparelled to get in the mood.  Sometimes I do have to get dressed up, for some work-related stuff.  But it's nice that I don't always have to, I guess otherwise I wouldn't want to every once in a while.
Anyway, introducing here some new shorts!
(Dressmaking details lower, if you're interested...)

Shorts; much modified Burda 7723, yellow embroidered cotton, details below
Top; Butterick 4985, baby blue embroidered cotton with lace pockets and a lace tie (normally hanging down the front, not the back; it's a bit windy today)
Thongs; Mountain Designs
Nail varnish; Glamourpuss, BYS

The shorts are made using my old favourite Burda 7723, out of fabric I bought before Christmas, so it hasn't been a super long-term stash resident.  I was originally planning a little skirt but by the time I decided I wanted shorts it had sold out from the fabric store, and I had to make do with what I had.  Even so, I managed to make my usual modifications to this pattern, namely adding as much length as I could (about 6-7cm) and flaring the legs as much as I could (roughly a few cm)
The fabric is a lovely very strong acidic yellow cotton, with heavily embroidered flowers.  The embroidery on these flowers is extremely thick, and actually on the wrong side of the fabric the back of the embroidery is just as thickly interwoven with yarn as the front, which made working with it a little tricky.  To remove bulk (and because of the fabric shortage) I used the fashion fabric for only the upper part of the pocket and yoke piece, attaching pieces of a much thinner cotton for the invisible lower parts of the pocket.  Like wise, the same plain fabric was used for the pocket piece, and for the waistband facing.
Also because of bulkage, and fabric shortage, I drafted the pattern to be flat-fronted, and removed the pleat that is at the front of this pattern.
Also added a zip placket... I took a few pictures of this very simple modification.  This is such an easy thing to add to your waist-banded pants and shorts; I don't know why the pattern companies don't always have it as a standard feature.  You simply overlock the raw edges of a strip of fabric, folded wrong sides together.   This little bit was from the selvedge, and so unembroidered...  Interesting side-note?  I had previously used up most of the selvedge already for another project, here.
Then you sew it in place behind the left front of your zip.
Finally, when adding the waistband you then enclose the top end in the waistband along with the rest of the top end of your shorts.  Voila.  Super easy, and you'll never have to worry about cold zip teeth against your tender tummy skin again, or even worse, skin getting caught in zipper teeth... ouch.
You can probably just make out in this close-up here where I had to remove an embroidered flower from the right front fly area, just to fold the fabric sufficiently get the zip in.  Seriously, those flowers are a lot bulkier than they look, no kidding I had about a whole handful of thread from just taking out this one flower here... I had to do the same thing several times along the waistband too.
I found this perfect button, made of coconut shell.   Unfortunately you couldn't just buy one button, like I wanted, they came in packs of four...  Tres cute, no...?  Now I just have to find some project that is going to be perfect for those remaining three buttons...


  1. Cute shorts! I like the fabric of those shorts.

    I am watching the tsunami in Japan, live on TV. Holy canoli, what a tragedy.

  2. Your look cool and relaxed in your office outfit - the shorts are a nice colour and beautiful fabric.

    Lovely photos of you both again, and the one of the two of you peeping out from behind the tree the other day made me laugh.

  3. Another cute outfit! I haven't worn shorts in years. Being from Florida, I wore them pretty much daily for years. Everyone does, young/old, thin/fat, short/tall etc. Some how in Northern Europe shorts seem a little more just for the very young, very fit, or on the beach only. I would feel very conspicuous and a bit doughy wearing them down my local high street. I'm totally jealous of your Australian lifestyle- and your long legs too! :-)

  4. I am doing an in-house stint for a few months and miss my home office attire (pjyamas at noon).

  5. Como eu gostaria de ter a liberdade de escolher o que vestir para trabalhar. Estou invejosa. Seus Shorts são lindos e o tecido é maravilhoso.


    Eilane - Brasil

  6. Love the fabric you used for the shorts. They came out very nice. The perfect thing to wear to the office, I think.

  7. Lovely shorts! I'm so envious at your backgrounds... Toronto is cold and rainy, and a beach sounds utterly wonderful.

  8. Oh, I love these shorts! they are so bright and cheerful. I think they would make me happy working at home too. Interesting about the bulk of the embroidery, you can't tell in the final version.

  9. What beautiful fabric and beautiful setting for photos! I work at home two days a week and my dress then is very casual. Have to go to campus three days a week and then, it is dressier.

  10. I just noticed the top pattern was Butterick 4985! I have this exact pattern already to cut out in a sort of gold silky type fabric - but then have gotten sidetracked. How did you like that pattern?

  11. AAAAAh! After I went to bed last night I remembered that I bought that pattern because you recommended it as a shirt with collar stand, and then I felt silly asking you about it again. Doh. oops! he he ... I was going to make the two piece split sleeve but maybe it's not me and that 's why I'm hesitating ... I dunno. I remember you had made several versions and they were all different. Sorry for being such an idiot!