New Year's Style -- A Casual Tuxedo
December 8, 2013
It's time for another bucket list sewing project!
I have always loved the idea of my own tuxedo, but with very limited reasons to wear one, it seemed like an impractical endeavor. With New Year's Eve approaching, it's the perfect time, but what about after the ball drops? I have a space issue as-is, so I can't really justify a one-time-use project to squeeze into the already cluttered closet.
I remember when I was in high school, I found an old tux jacket at the thrift store and wore that thing constantly, until it was threadbare and the textiles were breaking down. That got me thinking about the idea of a more casual tuxedo -- a trouser and jacket that could be worn together or as separates. Pieces that would go great with a T-shirt or a dressier option, that could mix and match with the rest of my wardrobe.
I started thinking about and browsing possible fabrics for such a project, and eventually hit on a Vera Stretch Sateen for the main fabric, Adore Duchess Satin for the contrast elements, and a bright pink charmeuse for the lining.
I used Vogue 8958 view B for the jacket, and McCall's 6707 view B for the pants. Both of these patterns delivered on their promise of easy assembly. The flaps featured on the jacket are faux flaps for non-pockets, so I opted to eliminate them in the interest of a cleaner line. Cutting a size 14 in both garments, I used about 3.5 yards of sateen and a little less than 2 yards for the charmeuse lining. For the duchess satin accents, I needed about 1.5 yards -- there's lots of leftover, but that long stripe down the side of the pants needs a continuous cut. The whole thing came together in a weekend day (though that's about all I did that day).
The trousers go together SO quickly -- I was kind of shocked, since there's detailing that most pants don't have. But the pattern is really well designed. Huzzah! Here's the pocket and stripe on the pants from the side. You can see where the pants are pulling a little, but that's because of my mannequin's jaunty stance. And the contrast waistband, slightly artified to make up for a grainy shot.
I first paired the jacket with one of the layered lace skirts I made earlier this year and a basic black T-shirt. Totally ready for office holiday parties or cocktails with friends.
So, with a simple graphic print shirt underneath, I can look a little dressed up for New Year's, but I'll be comfy well past midnight.
I will probably use both of these patterns again. The pants would be great in any number of fabrics (there may be a plaid version with black contrast in the not-too-distant future). And I KNOW I'll wear both pieces in all sort of situations. Here's to ringing in the new year with fun, versatile garments!
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