Hike & Seek. The Explorer Outfit | Adey Lim

The Facts



Fabric: 1 and half yards Echino by Estuko Furuya green glasses fabric $27.75 and scrap poly lining
Patterns: Simplicity 1124
Year: c.  1955
Notions: Buttons and invisible zipper $1
Time to complete: 3 hours
First worn: 27 March 2011


Fabric: Scrap fabric from making this dress and facings for the Fly & Chill Dress
Notions: Buttons, invisible zipper, hook and eye $1
Time to complete: 3 hours
First worn: 27 March 2011

Wear again? Definitely! Together and as separates.

Total Cost: ~$29.75

The fabric prints of Japanese designer Estuko Furuya never fails to amaze and inspire me. Every season, there is something that tugs (strongly) at my purse strings! They are rather costly so I've tried my best to resist. I've made a dress using her fabrics before and absolutely love it so this is my second echino garment attempt. Are you a Japanese fabric fan like I am? Have you used an echino?

This green glasses fabric was the first project I chose for the St. Patrick's week theme but didn't get to finish. You see, I'm participating in Made Me March 2011 and instead of wearing my usual tee and shorts combo to fetch my son from school, I started wearing some casual dresses. On the day that I completed this pair of shorts, I didn't wear a dress to pick the little prince up. My son made a big deal out of it and insisted that I should wear only dresses to his school. For this silly little reason, I decided to work on casual dresses instead for the past few weeks. And what better opportunity to start work on this outfit again with the Unfinished Object (UFO) theme!

I have been quite a disciplined crafter (or perhaps not a multi-project tasking one) and don't usually have UFOs lying around my sewing room but this time I had two and both from March.  I have every intention to finish both before moving on to next week's theme as having UFOs around kinda drive me nuts. I absolutely want them out of the way. Do you usually put up with UFOs and how long is your UFO tolerant period?


The shorts made using scrap home decor fabric from Ikea was a breeze to make. It fits high on the waist, fits perfectly and is finished with a side zipper and eye & hook. I love that this beige fabric does not crinkle easily and my favourite design elements are the bands with sewn on buttons at the bottom of the shorts. These bands are incorporated into the cuff pattern and not sewn on separately.

They mirrored the bands and buttons at the top of blouse pockets. I also adore these green and orange buttons I managed to find at Spotlight.

Making the blouse was filled with slightly more drama as I made a boo-boo when cutting the fabric. Yikes! Blame it on blur me. I didn't notice till after cutting the front bodice piece that the previous user of this vintage pattern had not cut away the additional tissue at the border of the front centre fold. This meant the blouse was not gonna fit as there was a fair bit of extra fabric on the front. To get the extra inches of fabric off the blouse, I created four pleats and added gold piping to them for some contrast. Thank goodness it worked quite well and I'm actually loving the piping details down the front.  

P3273744This outfit spent a pleasant day at the Singapore Zoo where we went for a family outing and I couldn't help but noticed how well my anti mosquito patch matched the outfit!
P3273748And hurray for shorts! I love wearing shorts and it makes great sense for the perpetual summer weather here and for running after my kids. Which was probably why I was so excited when I found this nice 1950s vintage shorts/blouse pattern. I realized good ones are rather difficult to come by and can't wait to sew a few more combos like this! Are you a shorts person too and do you have a favorite shorts sewing pattern? Love to know other good patterns out there!

In Behind the Seams this week, I am sharing some tips I've picked up from sewing shorts.

Have a wonderful week! Can't wait to see all your completed UFOS! 


Adey Sew Convert

A former kids' television channel manager turned stay home mum from Singapore, I hated sewing since I attended my first home economic class at the age of 14. In 2007, something miraculous happened when God blessed me with a second pregnancy. I discovered that I was expecting a baby girl. That changed everything. First I went crazy shopping for handmade clothes for her on etsy. Then I decided I needed to make something for her on my own. I was a month from my due date when I took an intensive 8-hour sewing class. In Dec 2008, I made a dress for my princess before she was born and have not stopped sewing since.


Comments are closed.

  1. Oh my gosh, I LOVE this blouse! The fabric, the buttons, everything! So cheery!

  2. Cute! I love Japanese fabric and have made a bag with Echino fabric – love them! And I also love shorts. I have my eye on Kwik Sew 3854, I think the buttons are a cute detail! One of the two UFOs I want to complete this week is the Oolong dress I started for the CP theme week. I’m 90% done…

  3. I love how you combine modern fabric prints with vintage patterns! The results are always so classy!

  4. Those shorts are fabulous! It’s so hard to find a good shorts pattern. (I should have taken a pattern of a favourite pair I wore so much that I sat through the backside). Very nice top – such a cute motif – good work with the variations made through necessity. The piping works well.

  5. I love your shorts and the shirt fabric! Green looks fabulous on you. I love your extra detailing on the front as well as the buttons on the shorts. This outfit it perfect for the zoo!

  6. Love the fabric!!! Those glasses on the green background look very chic! Love the photos as well!

  7. I have seen the glasses fabirc in several colors and it is so cute. You did a great job as usual. What a fun outfit to run around in. Casual but so unique.
    I hate to say it but I have several baskets I am working on slowly that have cut out items in and several UFO. I like to cut out patterns but when it comes to the sewing I get frustrated and I don’t sew them. My goal this year is to finish, finish, finish.

  8. :) love the pairing up of echino fabric for the top pattern. and the small details too!
    i’ve been waiting rather impatiently for my shorts/separates pattern to come in the mail….

  9. Adorable! Love the fabric and the cut of this top on you!!

  10. I love your outfit and that glasses fabric! I’m really glad you finished it because I have this same pattern and have wanted to make it. I too, like shorts, but I don’t like longish ones as much and I can’t wear short ones to work :(
    The Singapore Zoo looks like tons of fun!

  11. I hate having a bunch of projects lying around too! Sometimes it seems like everyone else is always starting new things before they finish old ones but that stresses me out.

  12. I really like this combo it is so cute and perfect. Yes I LOVE japanese fabrics and splurge very sparingly on them because of the cost. I get mine from the on-line store super buzzy bee.

  13. Actually, I started reading your blog because of your Echino dress- I bought that same eggplant colored safari pattern fabric a year ago when I started sewing, and then couldnt bear to cut into it because of fear I would screw it up, and I couldnt figure out what pattern to use. I think You did an amazing job with in in that dress, and ever since, I’ve been trying to figure out how to copy your idea.

  14. That is a really great outfit! I love the glasses fabric. Your son is too cute wanting you to wear only dresses. Hee hee!

  15. Great outfit.Love the fabric.Looks cute on you.

  16. This is such a fun outfit! I love both pieces and the fresh spin you have put on the vintage pattern. Adorable buttons and details!
    Your exotic photo shoot is great too! Love the setting!

  17. What a great pattern you found! I do love the glasses print – excellent job!

  18. Thanks Karen L! I was in a shorts/ separates phrase when I found this lovely pattern and since then I have only found two other nice vintage patterns for shorts/ pants. They are really quite hard to come by. I'm so glad you like the fabric print!

  19. Thanks Cathe! It's a fun outfit indeed, I'm so glad you like it too. I've been to the zoo so many times and didn't notice how cool some spots looked as we were always snapping photos of animals and not the setting so I'm glad we took these photos there.

  20. Thanks Sarah! Yes, my boy's stubbornness is irresistibly cute sometimes. He made me laugh when he said that.

  21. Wow, really? Thanks for sharing that, it's interesting for me to find out. The eggplant fabric was in my fabric stash for a REALLY long time too before I found what I thought was the right pattern for it and it was probably my slowest sewing project ever cos I didn't want to ruin it so I know exactly how you feel! But no worries, I'm sure you will find the right pattern too!

  22. Thanks Jessie! I tend to be very selective too when it comes to Japanese fabrics but can't seem to resist border printed ones or double gauze. I usually buy them from etsy or fabric tales. 

  23. Yay! That makes two of us, Whistlepea! I would rather finish up projects one at a time anytime!

  24. Thanks Lisette! I hope you use the pattern too, it's really a fun outfit to sew and wear. I would recommend a slightly longer zipper for the blouse than recommended though. The zoo is lots of fun and my kids are always asking to go there on weekends.

  25. Haha! Thanks Fiona! I hope your pattern arrives soon cos I wanna see what you create with it!

  26. 'Finish, finish, finish' is a marvelous goal Sue! I usually love the sewing but not so much the cutting bit, it would be perfect if we worked on the projects together haha! I'm so glad you like the outfit and it is indeed fun to sew and wear!

  27. Thanks Debi! I'm actually surprised the zoo setting looked so good in photos as we were always taking photos of animals and not the surroundings.

  28. Thanks Megan! I really enjoyed wearing it to the zoo as well, it's fun and unique at the same time. I'm so glad you liked the fabric choices and detailing.

  29. Thanks Jen!  Yes, it's so tough to find a good shorts pattern! I wished you took photos too. Am so glad you liked the piping details!

  30. Thanks so much Melissa, am so happy you like the outfit!

  31. Thanks Amanda! Echino fabrics make absolutely gorgeous bags, I'm certain yours is stunning too!  The Kwik Sew pattern looks awesome! I love the button details and the sailor pants look! I'd definitely get that pattern if I get the chance! Can't wait to see your Oolong!

  32. Thanks Lauren, it is such a fun and cheery blouse to wear, I felt really happy wearing it!

  33. Gorgeous! I’ve always loved Echino prints but have only found one way to use them in a garment so far:
    However, I love that you’ve given me ideas for how to utilize Echino in non-skirt format.
    Yours are my favorite posts on SW, keep it up!

  34. Oh my goodness Jessica, I'm on cloud 9. Thank you so much for saying that, I am SO encouraged! I LOVE your skirt and the scooter print. I think that print is absolutely perfect for skirts! I have used the same print of two different color tones to make shorts for my boy and it's one of his faves. http://sewconvert.wordpress.com/2009/03/30/echino-scooter-playpants/

  35. Cute outfit Adey! Perfect for your setting. I’m sure you’ll get heaps of wear out of it. (Well.. if you’re little boy says it’s ok to wear shorts every once in a while. lol!)

  36. Such a cute outfit! what’s an anti mosquito patch?

  37. Thanks Casey! LOL, I hope so too!

  38. Thanks Heather! It's a patch you stick on so the mosquitos stay away from you, a necessity for zoo visits. It works for around 8 hours.

  39. Yay Adey! What great colours and a super cute combo! Just darling! Such a beautiful modern take on the vintage style!
    I’m like you, I generally don’t like UFOs hanging around!

  40. Thanks Veronica! Yay to zero UFOs! I just completed the last one and am super glad! 

  41. The most important in this discussion, and a student inadvertently threw the narrow mind wide open. Always try to be a major consumer of thinkers and thoughtful even about-there are many things they hadn’t thought about-especially the nostalgia and whimsical ideas and did not need to think about, because, definitely it. Looking forward to future posts.