Sunday, 28 April 2013

I've done a Bowie.

Hello there you pretty things,

Well I've been away for some time haven't I?!  I thought it had only been a few weeks but looking at my last post it is in fact a few months whoops :s  At this point I have to say I promise I've not been hibernating in fact I've been crazy busy and the blog has been one of the casualties but no more I'm back!  I will fill you in on my exploits in due course but I thought for now it's best to hit you up with my latest make as I know as sewentists we love the detail but boy do we love a big reveal :)

It is indeed quite fortuitous that I return to the blogosphere with my sartorial salute to David Bowie -singer, clothes horse, cultural redefiner, king of reinvention, force of nature etc. etc.  who himself just blasted back on to the cultural landscape.  I don't think I'd ever be able to eloquently explain how much I love him but I will say that the fact he managed to return under shadow of darkness one miserable January morning taking the whole world by surprise in his 60s with an album that sounds as fresh as the music he made in the 70s makes me weep tears of unashamed joy.  Obvs I don't see my return being even a fraction of an atom as important as his is or of the belief it will be as highly publicised :)  All the same I'm happy to be swaggering back in on his fabulous coat tails.

I must give thanks to the lovely Tempest Devyne for organising the Bowie Sewalong, which after the long winter of discontent has returned my sewjo and got me all fired up.

The scope of choice to sew something Bowie inspired is maaaasssive but serendipitously I had traced the suspender skirt from Sew U Home Stretch and downloaded the Mathilde blouse pattern and were chomping at the bit to make both. So I decided to go for a female version of the character, Halloween Jack that he created for Diamond Dogs and hence Halloween Jill was born.

Halloween Jack meet...

Halloween Jill

A little messing round with Photoshop and I've sort of recreated the Terry O'Neill's Diamond Dogs photo though I have to say that David does moody creative genius far better than me.  I think I look like I've stubbed my toe as opposed to having just thought of a whole new concept album.

I absolutely love this photo of him and the story behind it just sums him up.  It was shot by Terry O'Neill and they said oh we'll get a big dog in for a shot and it was quite antsy and everyone was freaking out but when the dog leapt up growling Bowie didn't even flinch.   Always the epitome of cool and reminding us that every age we are relevant Dear David I salute you.

Waxing lyrical about this icon is something I could do for many paragraphs to come but this is a blog about sewing so I will return to that now.  Basically, having made the Mathilde blouse, which was created by the ridiculously talented Tilly of buttons  and Great British Sewing Bee fame I want to say I love it.  The pattern is really great to work with and just scaling from size 5 on the girls down to a 4 on the hips gave me a cracking fit and I'm currently thinking of many more incarnations of it.  I will stress though NEVER use the fabric that I did :s  It was an absolute swine to control.  I bought it on a little trip out to Goldhawk Road and I was immediately enthralled by it because it mirrored the pattern perfectly of Bowie's shirt and had a lovely drape that I thought would make the most of the bishop sleeves, which in fairness it has.  But my days it was slippery than Simon Cowell after an oily massage gah!  I considered dispensing with the pin tucks but being a stubborn swine I wasn't going to be beaten by a metre and a half of whatever the hell fibre it is.  

This is a face of both jubilation that the blouse was finished and sheer mania at the hours spent haranguing the fabric into order.  I call the expression bat shit joy.

As you can see from above the blouse works great as a separate and has been worn several times since this picture was taken and is my fave combination of both kooky but work appropriate *double thumbs*

In contrast the suspender skirt was easy peasy to make and came together in about 2 and a bit hours once I'd stopped crying about the fact I'd put a hole in the blouse yoke after trimming through the facing and into the front gah!  Anywho one of my New Year's objectives (don't like the word resolution sounds too stressful and finger waggy) was to get my stretch on.  If anyone is worried about dallying with stretch I absolutely can't recommend Wendy's Sew U Home Stretch enough as a starting point.  She writes clearly and in non patronising way and there's great instructions on how to adapt the patterns in the book to create other looks.  In fact there's so much of the red double knit left that I used to make the skirt I'm going to have a go at the Flashdance stylee sweatshirt featured in the book *dons leotard and welding mask* :)

Look how happy braces makes me.  I'm gonna be sticking braces all over the shop this coming year and I don't care if it makes me look like Russ Abbot because braces rock!

So there you go my sweet ones that's what I've been up to.  I will bid you farewell for now but not for long I promise.

I figure the only way to sign off is by saying Let's Dance!




  1. I love your bat shit joy face! Love your Bowie outfit, too.

  2. Love this outfit! You look rad, girl!

  3. Love it! Was great to meet you and fab to be reading your blog again!

  4. Love it! The braces skirt is fab.

  5. Glad you're back! And it's a great outfit.

  6. Just fabulous! And love the phrase bat shit joy! Good to see you back blogging too. Mwah!

  7. Because you're bloody fab and I love your blog I've nominated you for a Liebster Award. Go to my blog to find out what it is x

  8. Jessie Stanbrook16 May 2013 at 09:16

    I nominated you for a Liebster award! Please see my post here:

    Thanks! Have a great day! :)