The “Two for one” shirts

The Facts
: Two different cottons from stash, navy sueded rayon from stash
Pattern: New York 1779
Notions: 10 buttons, 1 safety pin, interfacing, all from stash,
Year: 1940’s
Time to complete: 5 hours
First worn: November 2012
Wear again? Yes!

Total Cost: Free

The good news is I finally went through the big pile of shredded patterns the puppies created for me while I was working on the Western challenge. The REALLY good news is my FAVORITE blouse pattern was FINE!! The less-than-good-news is I lost of total of four patterns. Two are current, Simplicity 3688 and 2648, which I can replace the next time Joann’s has a .99 sale. The other two I lost were my favorite skirt patterns (this one and this one.) There were enough pieces of the first that I think I can re-draft it pretty easily and the second one I lucked out with : ) I found a navy skirt I had cut out from the scraps left over from this dress so all I had to due was trace around the pieces and voila!

Why is this navy skirt important? Because I couldn’t make up my mind which of these two fabrics to use for this challenge…

Choice number one

And this stunner –

Choice number two

So I used both : ) And because there is blue in the second piece and I don’t have a blue skirt (until now) it seemed a really good way to clear up a UFO, reclaim a pattern AND have a nifty outfit!

Here is one outfit:

For photos this time I joined my daughter at Mills while she worked on some final projects so we’re in the painting studio. One of her friends made this photo booth so we checked it out : ) I hesitated to show the full shot because I had this FABULOUS idea just before I left to go to Oakland – wouldn’t this look great with yellow/gold tights?! I don’t have any : ( and getting to Target before I met my daughter was just out of the question…so you get the same black I wore with the other outfit. Reality…

But the rest of the outfit is great. I felt so good in it that I wore it for the rest of the day!

And let me just point out a couple new accessories I’m sporting here – you can see the gorgeous blue necklace in the photos above, it has a bracelet friend:

It looks great with my bakelite…and check out that RING!! That is influenced completely by Kazz : ) The necklace, bracelet and ring is made out of Tagua-nut, a nut from Ecuador. For the last four years I’ve gone to the Green Fest in San Francisco, a two day festival that celebrates all thing sustainable and “green”. The first year I went with my girlfriend Sue and her son Kevin and he was dismayed to find out they served only vegetarian/vegan food, no burgers, no bacon!! My daughter has gone a couple of times and for someone who can’t eat gluten, and I can’t eat dairy, we don’t feel like freaks : ) Along those lines comes jewelry like this, made from renewable resources and STUNNING. The woman from whom I bought pieces the last few years wasn’t there but a new seller was and I jumped at the blue set you see here. I don’t think I would have EVER considered a ring like this (or my yellow bakelite one I have on my other hand) without the Kazz influence. My mother thought my yellow ring was HUGE and this red one is twice its size and I LOVE IT!! The woman who makes this stuff is local and I will be buying more from her in the near future : )

Now for the other shirt and outfit:

I paired this shirt with my black skirt from the Reality challenge. I mean, we keep making stuff so it should all start going together, right? I swapped out the navy and yellow bracelets for a few more red and black, kept the giganto red ring and pulled out my latest flea market find for the belt.

It’s not a buckle but a pin but who can tell? I just pinned it to the belt for something different. Cool huh?

And who is that curious fellow to my right? Brittany says that call it the “Zombie raccoon”. Painted on plexi glass, there are several of them near the art building.

You can’t help but be amused : ) And cold…it’s cold out right now. We’ve got a storm from Alaska hanging around so the high today was 61 degrees. It is NOT 61 in the shade!

I’m loving my shirts! I wear my red one with jeans, skirts and even the skirt it was originally designed to pair with. The only thing I did differently with these two was make it one inch longer so they’ll stay tucked into my pants a little better. I have two other pieces of fabric I’m eyeing as we speak…

The safety pin I listed in the notions list was to keep the waistband of the skirt closed on the navy skirt. I didn’t have any more hooks-n-eyes and didn’t know it. Doh!

End-of-the-shoot playing around : )

SIX challenges left!! Only six! What will we DO next year?!



Loran is a Bay Area designer, stitcher and suburban farm girl. Having done theater for years she's finally taking on her most demanding client (herself!) and fashioning a wardrobe from her huge stock of vintage patterns and fabrics, all while writing her daily tablesetting blog. Let's see if she can keep up with both : )


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  1. Mine’s a bit like your first shirt … you’ll see soon!

  2. Things I am envious of in this post: 1) NY 1779 (such a classic shirt pattern), 2) Your fabrics. Oh, your fabrics! I WANT them! So my style!, 3), and most of all, Mills. Ah, I miss Mills! I want to do photoshoots at the Art Museum and see the wacky artworks the students have hidden among the trees! Do they still have ‘dinosaur’ bones back in the ivy? Also, I am envious of how much you got done! Two shirts and a skirt! I’m so glad that you were able to rescue or re-assemble your favourite patterns.

    • Thank you Leimomi! I can trace it for you if you like, you’ll have to size it down a bit but you have skills : ) The fabrics are from Stone Mountain, I bought them a year ago when a friend and I went shopping ‘just cause’. And did you attend Mills? I graduated in 1984 so when my daughter graduates this year we’ll do the mother/daughter/bent twig portrait. She checked and said there is ONE dinosaur bone left, that the grounds crew probably “accidently” wrecked the others. I would love to use the campus more for photoshoots, we just don’t tend to be out there on weekends.

  3. Remind me never to get puppies! Two boys are like having puppies, clumsy and noisy! But loveable. Great shirt – wonderful fabrics and I am so glad you have not lost any precious patterns, I love that skirt with the scalloped raised waist – it’s so lovely.

    • The good thing about puppies is they grow up quickly, unlike kids : ) The bad thing about puppies is they grow up quickly, and I miss the kid stage. Not enough to have any more but I keep telling my sisters to relish it with their kids. And you just can’t love them enough, in my humble opinion : ) The scallop skirt is the pattern that is in many pieces but hopefully I can reconstruct it and make a couple more!

  4. love the shirts! Great cut on you, and the fabrics are divine. :-)

  5. That blouse pattern is precious! I’ve got to find it for myself. It looks Just right for tucking in to pants and skirts. The fabric is so pretty. Where did you find it? What a great place for taking pictures. I stayed overnight there once when my daughter and I were checking out schools. It’s a beautiful place. Your daughter must love it.

  6. Thanks Barbara, I’d be glad to trace it out for you, you’d just need to make it a little smaller. It works VERY well in the tucking-in department. The fabrics were found at Stone Mountain and Daughter in Berkely. I was back there last week to take advantage of a coupon and didn’t see any more of the fiesta-like fabric (the multi-colored one) as I thought about making a skirt to match and only have enough left for one length. Ah well, might make shorts : ) And several of the clerks there that day recognized the print in teh blouse (I went right after taking these photos) and LOVED it! We both love Mills, I graduated from there myself many years ago and this spring we’ll have the honor of taking the mother/daugher picture to go in the Mills Quarterly. They call relatives of graduates “bent twigs”. I’m very excited : )

  7. Great shirts, totally envious

  8. Sorry for commenting so late here Loran, I’ve been having issues commenting on SW some gateway error taking over a minute for it to post so annoying.

    You’re such an amazing seamstress, I’m in awe of your talents and I’ll have you know fancy lady pants that my eyes glazed over with pure joy when I spotted your to-die-for accessories. Y U M…everything is so perfect from the colours to your fabric choices, proportions etc. Ah, makes my heart sing it does.

    • I know what you mean, I’ve been having the same gateway error as well. Now I just post and wait…and get something to drink…then maybe a snack… then hit the back button and voila!
      Thank you for the lovely compliments, when people ask about my accessories now I tell them to check out your blog and your greatness : )

  9. They both look great but I think I love Choice No. 1 the best. And with your beautiful jewellery (I wish I had the accessorising gene)