My Orange Crush

You know how when you get a nice juicy orange, you just have to squeeze every last drop out of it?  That's kind of how I feel about some fabrics.  Sometimes, you'll get a fabric that is so nice, that you have to use up every last drop.  This orange knit was one of those fabrics.

Originally, I wanted to make a Fall "on the go" outfit with a tunic, cardigan, leggings and scarf.  I ordered 2 yards each of a black/tan striped silk/modal knit, an orange silk/modal knit, a black ponte, and a mesh from FabricMart Fabrics knit sale.  I was super curious to see what the silk/modal knits would be like; as I love silk knits for their brilliant colors and I love modal knits for their incredible softness, so the combination of the two seemed like a match made in heaven.  Plus, silk is known for providing warmth without weight, so I thought it could be a nice choice going into chilly weather.

When I got my order, I debated about whether I should wash the silk knits of not. They were GORGEOUS- silky soft and lustrous, just as I had imagined they would be.  I didn't want to lose any of the sheen. But I could just see myself spilling BBQ sauce on it the first time I wore it, so I bit the bullet and washed everything. I'm glad that I did because the silk knits did shrink about 12% in length. But the luster was still there! No harm done. 

 I was completely obsessed with the orange knit, but it was BRIGHT, and would need something that would ground it.  So, I envisioned an orange tunic, topped with a waterfall cardigan made from the stripe. 

I used Butterick 5789 for the cardigan and Vogue 1261- for the raglan tunic with a handkerchief hem.  I wanted the orange to peek out below the cardigan at the bottom for just a little pop of color.  I searched the Fabric Mart website for a fabric for the infinity scarf that would coordinate with the two fabrics, and found a wild rose/animal print mesh knit.  From it, I cut a rectangle 63" long by 18" wide.  To complete: sew long sides together, turn right side out, twist twice, then sew short ends together.  So simple!


For the leggings, I used the ponte knit with McCall's 7026.  You might wonder- "Why bother to make leggings when there are so many stores selling them?"  Well, they aren't all from this nice of a fabric. Plus, I've not found any RTW leggings that are long enough and not skin tight enough for my taste. By making them,  I get leggings that I'm comfortable wearing in a high quality fabric.



But wait- that's not the end of the story!  I had enough fabric left over for a BONUS OUTFIT!  I made a peplum top from McCalls 7021 and a basic knit skirt. 

I'd never made clothing from mesh knits before, thinking that they would be too thin, but this one was not see-through, and was easy to sew.   I'm thrilled with how completely different this outfit is from the first outfit, and I may even like it better!

But, it was the orange knit that I was obsessed with, and I couldn't let any of it go.  Actually, it was in the trash, and my husband forgot to take out the trash this week.  He never forgets to take out the trash, never!  Does that sound like a sign to you?  I was given a second chance.  I decided to sque-eeze out another top for my daughter, mixing all of the scraps together with McCalls 6992.  It's crazy, but she's quite adventurous in her clothing, and I can tell she loves it!


I still had enough pieces left to make a two sport headbands and two pairs of palm warmers for jogging.  The headband takes a piece that is 18" long by 10" wide- sewing the 10" sides together. This is the same as the Buff headbands that sell for a ridiculous $15 each. (Yes, I bought one, and guard it with my life, so now I won't feel so bad if I lose it.)



The palm warmers each take two pieces that are 7" wide by 8" high, sewing the 8" sides together, leaving a one inch opening in the center of the seam for your thumb.

By this point, my family was convinced that I'd lost my marbles; and during the palm warmer construction, the knit got stuck in my machine, which I took as a sign from the sewing gods that it was time to stop.

To recap- from my original order of 8 yards of fabric, I made 11 items- three tops, a pair of leggings, a skirt, an infinity scarf, two headbands, two pairs of handwarmers, and a cardigan!
I have virtually no scraps left of my orange knit (see above).   I got every last drop and enjoyed every minute of it. 

-Ann

20 comments

  1. You're on a roll! I'm so impressed with your ability to *think* about what you'll make with fabrics before you buy them...and then actually follow through to make a fashionable well-matched outfit(s)!

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    1. Thank you, Carrie! I don't always do that, but it certainly helps to keep the fabric from becoming "stash"!

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  2. All I can say is double WOW! Talk about utilizing all of your fabric. Great idea.

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  3. What a great way to use every piece of that fabric! You got some amazing pieces out of those 11 yards...fantastic!

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    1. Thank you, Carolyn! I've been enjoying wearing them already.

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  4. You are just tooo jazzy for me. You really worked that fabric! Tell your daughter I am so jealous of her. My mother stopped sewing for me a long time ago! She looks great in that top too.

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    1. Thank you, Sabrina! I keep trying to get her to sew her own clothes, but she keeps on figuring out how to get me to do it for her!

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  5. Each piece looks great and the idea of utilizing every inch of fabric is awesome!

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  6. Great work. I like the first outfit best of all.

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  7. Hilarious! I love that you got your full value of those fabrics! :-)

    OMG I love your daughter's top MOST! Brava!

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  8. Thank you, Nakisha! I'll tell her you said so- she wore it once already, and said that everyone went gaga over it.

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    1. Yay! Oooh and I was able to go back and add the floral/animal print fabric to an order. Yay for FabricMart's great customer service! :-D

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  9. Confession time. Your blog and my wife's interest has got me motivational. I am 'helping her' with her ventures

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  10. I love the striped knit - is this the one you used? http://www.bloglovin.com/frame?post=3648770027&group=1976372&frame_type=b&context=undefined&context_ids=undefined&blog=1976372&frame=1&click=0&user=0

    Love that outfit, looks so comfortable and fun.

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    1. Thank you! Here is a link to the striped knit on the FabricMart website:
      http://www.fabricmartfabrics.com/Driftwood-Black-Striped-Modal-Silk-Lycra-Jersey-Knit-64W.html

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  11. amazing! I love all your tops and what a great way to use up all that fabric. cant wait to see what you come up with next

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