I can't say I've ever had a particular affinity for birds. Growing up, the only birds I could actually identify were Canadian Geese, of which there were an abundance of. I also got pretty good at identifying goose poop... of which there was also an abundance of... Which is why it's pretty remarkable that these days I'm able to recall the names of a lot of our feathered friends that I see about. Galveston has some pretty spectacular birding, and I guess it's the sort of thing that just rubs off after spending time in a place. But of all the birds I see about, there's really only one that I get super excited about when I spot it, and that's the Roseate Spoonbill.
I remember the first time I saw a Roseate Spoonbill I was driving across the causeway that connects the island to mainland Texas, and out of the corner of my eye I saw this flash of pink in the sky. It was shortly after we had moved to Galveston and I remember coming home and saying to my husband (not totally sure if I had imagined the whole thing or not) "Nick, I think there are pink birds here..." He, of course, already knew about the pink birds, being much more... well... just generally better informed about these things than I am. To me, living in a place with such technicolor fowl flapping about, makes me feel like I'm in the most exotic place in the world, even if it is just costal Texas.
So why am I waxing romantic about pink birds today? I swear there's a reason, and that reason does indeed tie into one of my two newest makes. So let me introduce you to...
My second Archer, made up in a silk crepe de chine. This silk started it's life as plain white, and I was truly this close to leaving it white, because there is something pretty classic about a white, silk, button-up shirt, is there not? But I felt like maybe I could love it a little bit more if it was, I don't know, a little pinker. So I dyed it. Easy peasy. Just a one step, good ol' fashioned, dunk-it-in-a-bucket-and-swish-it-around dye job. I mixed just the teensiest amounts of chocolate brown and coral pink dye (both from Dharma) to get the color I was aiming for. And the color on my mind, my inspiration, was the pale shade of rose that the Roseate Spoonbill displays on it's soft, downy feathers. See? Told you I had a point with all that bird nonsense!!
As this is my second time making Grainline's Archer, I won't go into too many details here (to read about my first Archer, go here). And while I wear my first Archer a ton (like, multiple times a week, sometimes) I did make some changes to the pattern this time around to get the fit closer to how I like my button-ups. I've been very jealous of the fit on all of Andrea's Archers, and so decided to take a page out of her book and decrease some of the width through the shoulders (I used this tutorial) and take in the side seams a bit at the waist for a more feminine shape. The changes were subtle (only half an inch at the shoulders and about an inch at the waist) and I think my finished shirt keeps some of the 'boyfriend' vibe that I love so much about this pattern, while making it just a bit more flattering on my body. Score.
Sewing this was also one of those experiences that sewists simply live for. Everything came together absolutely gorgeously, the silk pressed beautifully, and because this shirt has so many sweet little details on it, it was one of those makes where you can actually see that you've made progress with your technique. Very satisfying indeed.
I also made up Tessuti's Suzy Pants pattern in this navy and white patterned silk crepe that I scored while in NYC. I can't remember the name of the store, because I was in such a post-blogger-meetup euphoria that I wasn't really paying attention, but I do remember that I spotted it and immediately thought, "Suzy Pants". I've been obsessed with Kelli's Suzy's since she posted them, and felt like they would make the perfect transition pants for fall.
I had already made one of Tessuti's patterns (here) and found them to be perfectly delightful to sew with. I think much like Kelli, I was drawn to the Suzy pattern because they closely resemble a lot of the pleated, lightweight trousers that I've been seeing a lot from ready-to-wear lines. While I probably could have done the work and converted my beloved Built By Wendy pants pattern to this style, it was much much easier to just download the Suzy pattern! I made these in a size XS, based off of my measurements and the finished garment measurements, and the fit was just what I was hoping for, loose, but not baggy. I also took a page from Kelli's book and made my Suzy's with a flat-front waistband and just elastic in the back. I tapered the leg towards the ankle, and cropped the length, as well. I always think a tapered leg looks most stylish when it's cropped, plus, now they're the perfect length to wear with my fall/winter staples - my black booties!
I made these a few weeks ago, now (they go together super quickly) and have worn them at least twice a week since (and sometimes I change into them when I get home from work, because they are just that comfortable). So I guess that is testament to how much I love them? My husband kind of chuckles at me when I wear them and refers to them (fondly I'm sure...) as my fancy Zubaz pants. I mean... I guess they do sort of have a '90's Mom' vibe (maybe in a cool way???) but definitely not a bad 90's pants vibe... right?? Right???
Man, taking blog photos is just always awkward, right? Today the weirdos were in particularly rare form (or am I the weirdo in this scenario... so hard to tell...) While I was darting back and forth between my posing and adjusting the camera I noticed that there was some old dude in a BATHROBE standing on his porch watching me!! Just, like, leaning up against the post, giving me an eye-full of his silvery chest rug. So I say, "Hey there" and kind of wave, and dude just growls at me in the thickest Russian accent, "Are you Russian?? You look like you could be Russian..." Um. Huh? So I smile and say, "No, I'm not Russian"... And my man just keeps on standing there, smiling and staring!! Thus, the incredibly uncomfortable look on my face in that second-to-last picture! So finally I ask if I'm bothering him, and he says 'no' and goes back inside (to continue to creep at me behind his lace curtains...) but not without leaving a strong whiff of heebie-jeebies in his wake! Granted, I was taking pictures on the sidewalk right in front of his house, so, yeah... not really sure who's the bigger weirdo in this scenario... I mean, I did just shame a dude off his own porch so I could take pictures for my sewing blog on his private property.... Like, clearly the robed Russian is the weirdo... right? Right...?