Posted in sewing

Marc Jacobs Solid Gold Linen Shorts: Burda 6-2011-111

I’ve been making these shorts for weeks now. First, I was going to make them to go to Boston almost two months ago. I needed a ‘club’ outfit according to my traveling companions.  They also said I needed to stay up until 3:00 a.m. and that didn’t happen either…

Then, I thought I would finish them in time for Artscape and wear them out that weekend. But, that also didn’t happen. Finally, two weeks ago I got around to making the shorts and trust, I am totally looking for someplace to go because I LOVES them.

I look like I should be a Solid Gold Dancer. 

The fabric is a Marc Jacobs laminated / waxed cotton/linen/silk blend from Mood Fabrics. At $25 a yard it felt like a splurge. But, shorts are just one yard and I thought these would look good with my skin tone. I would totally buy shorts for $25 and these are custom fit! I brought them in to the office when I was seeking advice on what to wear them with and my friends and colleagues *gushed*.

When the material first arrived I was kind of nervous. I mean, I’m in my late 30s. Do I need to be wearing shiny shorts? But, all the young hot things in my office told me they thought they’d be spectacular and they were right!

For this pair, I still omitted the front side pockets. I really just need someplace to put my Blackberry and ID. So, I made (somewhat) matching single welt pockets in the back.

These shorts could easily be too much. So, on the advice of friends I went with a simple tank and dangle earrings. These shorts totally make me want a pair in leather. Is that strange?

As an aside, I was kind of ‘mad’ at myself when I cut down 22 inch zippers for these shorts. I almost went out to buy a shorter one so I wouldn’t ‘waste’ my zipper. While debating this, I stumbled on this post from China and another from Panama. The zipper in these shorts were just  8 cents from Xiamen, China. Eight cents. A new 9 inch zipper from the store here would have been $2.25 easily. I was fine with cutting it after that. But, wondered why I didn’t buy MORE zippers then!

Well, that’s the last of my summer shorts project!  As much as I’m wearing them, I can’t believe I didn’t own a single pair for years. I’ve made four shorts this summer — each with distinctive personalities. Working from one pattern to create multiple items was great for me. I hope to do something similar this fall / winter with jackets and next summer with capris. I’m glad I took this on. It’s quadrupled my summer wardrobe and I finally have some dog walking clothes 🙂

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Superstar Shorts: Burda 6-2011-111

My shorts wardrobe is nearing completion. I got a little behind with my posting this week. Work is getting busy again and I’m making a concerted effort to be more social. Enough of that, meet my Marc Jacbos Superstar Shorts!

Photos in the kitchen. It’s too hot and humid for outside shots. My makeup would just *melt*.  Maybe it’s time I set up a photo background inside 🙂 Let’s see, same pattern, Burda, June 2011 #111.

These are made from my Mood order using a  Marc Jacobs black embroidered star fabric at $18 a yard. I really wanted a pair of scalloped eyelet or embroidered shorts and thought these were a cute idea.

The original dress the fabric is made from retailed for $571!

The fabric is also available in blue and I had to stop myself from buying and sewing that up for the Independence Day like this Marc by Marc Jacobs top!


For this version, I made the dart into a pleat per the directions for 111B. I don’t see terrible much of a difference. I will say in black and this flowier material I liked the shorts slightly longer. Actually, of all my material (so far) these are my favorite for shorts (love the drape).

What else…

The fabric is a bit loose and see through, so I’ve underlined with some cotton voile in my stash. I think this stuff if from a trip to Jomar in Philly.

I skipped any back pockets and also eliminated the front pockets. Do you like my awesome use of navy blue serger thread and gray sewing thread? Clearly, I need to restock the black…

Man… look at that swayback / full seat adjustment, LOL!

I see these shorts as more of a go out for dinner or drinks shorts. Great with heels and slightly dressy.  The top is RTW from Bebe. I bought it ages ago for my high school reunion. Back when you could easily find tops like this in silk instead of polyester at midrange stores….

As you can see, Linus likes to get in on the photo shoots.

That’s all! We’re out of here for the weekend. I’m heading over to the Eastern Shore to visit friends. See you next time with my final pair in gold waxed linen…..

Posted in sewing

Preppy Red Poplin Shorts (and a dash of #fail)

Meet my super preppy  red stretch poplin shorts made from the June 2011 Burda magazine. Man. It’s hot as Haiti here. I took photos before 8 a.m. and it was already pushing 90 degrees (32 C).

For this pair, I was inspired by an H&M shorts I saw in the store. I tried these on and it was horrifying. I wear a size 8/10 RTW on the bottom.

Source: via Renee Cidell on Pinterest


In H&M I just start in the 12/14 range and cross my fingers. These were falling off my waist and creating a tourniquet at my thigh. Truly, horrifying. Their clothes are just not built for me. But, I really liked the preppy details of double welt pockets.

Source: via Renee Cidell on Pinterest


I also saw a similar pair on by Alexander Wang for a pittance at $240. They aren’t available yet but you can pre-order them for fall!


I transferred the three welt pocket details to my 6-2011-2011 Burda pattern and used Kathleen Fasanella’s technique for double welt pockets. Instant prep. These will be great for weekend’s on my friend’s boat or running to the market. The funnel tee shirt below is from the April 2011 Burda and discussed here.


Red is really hard to photograph 🙁 But, I placed double welt pockets on the back but the color is wonky and you can’t really see them in photos.

The fabric is from my July Mood Fabrics online order. It’s described as a medium weight poplin with heavy stretch.


I was worried before it arrived that it might be more shirt than bottom weight. I like this fabric and think it would be awesome as a fitted dress, jacket or capris. I went on the site to see if I could get it other colors because I liked the density of the material so much. But, alas, just white. And, I’m not making white shorts that stretch, LOL! .

Are you ready for the fail?  I did want a little double welt coin pocket on the front of the shorts like the first photo from H&M shows. I actually almost skipped adding this pocket but told myself *not* to be lazy.

How do you like that placement?  Instead of putting the pocket toward my hip, it’s at center front. Man. How did I manage to do that? My shorts kind of look like they are on backwards.

And, when I put my finger in the pocket, I look …. inappropriate. Yes, I said it. But, it’s the truth.

I wasn’t going to finish these when I realized my mistake. I was showing photos of it to folks at work and they just bust out laughing.  But, I think they look fine as long as I don’t tuck in. I mean, these things happen. Heh.

I’ve got my next pair cut out from a black embroidery. Hopefully this weekend I’ll get those done too.

** After looking at these photos I’ve decided these are 1 inch or so shorter than my seersucker shorts. Odd. So, I’m going to re-hem  a bit longer and use interfacing to stabilise. That will hopefully take care of the puckered hems.

Posted in sewing

Rainbow Brite Shorts: Burda Magazine 6-2011-111

I haven’t owned or worn a pair of non-athletic shorts in well over three years. I mean, I used to have some. But, they got ratty or I outgrew them.  And, I just never found any that I liked and which fit (blame my tragic waist / thigh ratio). I decided this was the summer I was going to have a week’s worth of summer shorts. After all, I’m working on having ‘dog walking clothes’.

I ordered material from Mood Fabrics online. I want to point out that when the box reached me, it was already open. Why? Because I took delivery at work and my co-workers (Project Runway fans) couldn’t wait for me to come out of my meeting before opening it for me. They said they knew I would understand. But, I digress…

Anyway, here’s the plan: seersucker, red poplin, laminated linen and black embroidered cotton. I think these will run the gamut from dressed up to dressed down. I’m not sure I’m going to make the madras anymore. We’ll see…

For this project, I chose this #111 pattern from the June 2011 Burda(link to $5.40 download on I wanted a short inseam. Longer shorts make my legs look like tree trunks. I like to distract from the width of my legs with the shortness of my shorts 😉

These have a nice flat front, side zip and contoured waistband. All things I knew I wanted. For my first pair, I eliminated the side pockets.

I’m calling these my Rainbow Brite pair, heh. I love color and stripes and seersucker. I was sold on these the minute I saw the material.

I underlined them in cotton batiste (also from Mood online). When I made this skirt last summer I realized that light seersucker is see through. I means you can not only see my underthings, but you can also see clothes tucked in to them.

The underlining also gave the fabric some more structure. I’ve seen seersucker shorts in the store and they never seem to be substantial enough. But, the seersucker suits I see at J.Crew and Brooks Brothers seem to be much thicker.

I also used a template to make the pockets. This made sure they were both the same and gave a nice sharp edge / finish with pressing. Oy. As drafted, pocket placement is comical on me — just  6 cm from the waistband. I moved these down and out several inches.

I’m very very happy with this patch pocket version. I found the waist a too high by one inch for my taste and have altered the pattern for my next go round (red poplin this weekend I hope).

The nice thing about the higher waist is there’s no belly to hang over the waist band or fear of showing my underwear when sitting. But, I’m still going to tweak these.

I’m happy! It’s been so long since I’ve had shorts that fit me well and are flattering!