Summer loving

Last week, I fell in love.  The event occurred whilst browsing the fashion floor of the new John Lewis store in York, like you do.  It hit me hard, and quickly.  But what could have taken my heart so quickly and so wholeheartedly??  The latest designer skinny jeans, or some exquisite heels perhaps?  No, not at all.  Whilst browsing the rather wonderful Somerset by Alice Temperley range my heart was taken by a rather splendid pair of culottes (see for yourself:  http://www.johnlewis.com/somerset-by-alice-temperley-tapestry-culottes-watermelon/p827117).  These brightly coloured flowing silk culottes, to me, epitomise summer (or at least my ideal of summer –note to the weather, can you please catch up?!).  Smart enough (with a jacket) to wear to the office on even the hottest day, but causal enough to wear at the weekend, all that is required are brown legs, an attractive sandal and a decent pedi!

Splendid though they were, the whopping £120 was a bit of a stumbling block this month.

I could, of course, wait for the sales, but what  fashionista wants to wait?  By sale time my heart will have moved onto the new season.  No when it comes to fashion I want it and I want it now!

I spent a lustful journey home longing for my new love.  But wait a second, I’m a ladies tailor?  Surely I could run up a pair of culottes?

I visited my fabric mountain and found a perfect print near the top (purchased in Barcelona a couple of months ago).  Next for the pattern… should I convert a trouser block or use a skirt?   It’s 15 years since I was at College studying pattern design but Winfred is never far from my side (Winfred Aldridge Metric Pattern Cutting) and once again she came up trumps.  Using a skirt block (my preference was the skirt as I know my pencil skirt block fits very well), Winfred gave me the formula to convert to culottes.

Using the skirt block as a basis for the pattern, I traced around this onto plain and followed the metric pattern guide
Using the skirt block as a basis for the pattern, I traced around this onto plain and followed the metric pattern guide
Using a bold print (purchased in Barcelona) these culottes will be perfect for SS14
Using a bold print (purchased in Barcelona) these culottes will be perfect for SS14

Within four hours not only had I designed my pattern, cut the fabric, and made myself the (although I say it) most wonderful pair of culottes.

Transforming the darts into pleats, I created a slight fullness at the front and kept the length  below the knee.
Transforming the darts into pleats, I created a slight fullness at the front and kept the length below the knee.

Whilst these culottes scream summer, the word is that culottes are here to stay for the new season.

Saturday evening, the clouds parted, the sun shone and out came my culottes!
Saturday evening, the clouds parted, the sun shone and out came my culottes!

 

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