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May 17, 2014

"Son of Jumpsuit" + My Wicked RTW Confession



Look what arrived in the mail today, readers!

It wasn't a surprise inasmuch as I'd purchased it on Etsy earlier in the week.  I should have mentioned it.

Now of course, this pattern, McCalls 5119 from 1976, isn't a jumpsuit.  But this matching shirt and pants ensemble (with special embroidery detail), which looks like something Donny Osmond wore on a Bob Hope Christmas Special, is so close to a jumpsuit, I call it "Son of Jumpsuit."





I confess that I bought it mainly for the pants.  I mean, you don't see pants like THAT every day.  And the shirt's pretty groovy too.





I actually think this would be cuter turned into a jumpsuit, don't you? (Maybe with a cape added on?)



In other news, while I pride myself on making everything I wear, every once in a while I slip.

Has this every happened to you?  You walk into a fast-fashion store -- in my case, H&M -- and you look at all the colorful, trendy clothes and the cheap prices and you think to yourself: Jeez, for $10 I could buy these shorts that would take me two days to make myself!  It's very tempting.

I stumbled into an H&M last week to kill some time between downpours and on the sales rack I spotted a very cute tank top from the David Beckham collection marked down from $14.95 to just $5. It was my size and I could actually use a tank top as I wear them a lot in the summer.  Plus, David Beckham.  So I bought it.







It's a 90% cotton/10% rayon blend, and I must say it's very well made.  This is the kind of garment I can never quite pull off at home: I can't find the right weight knit, the shoulder bindings end up too bulky, the seam finishes don't look as professional, etc.  And how long do I want to spend sewing a knit tank top?  I know it was made in Bangladesh under who-knows-what conditions and that I should have passed it by, but there you go: I'm fallible.









(WHAT is with these four layers of labels?)



Circling back to jumpsuits for a moment, I swung by the flea market this morning and saw this.  It even had my name on it.  But I resisted.



I also got to hang out with MPB reader Ben, who was visiting New York City on business this week.  On my recommendation, Ben picked up a bag of mother-of-pearl buttons.







And that's it.  Today I must finish my mother's robe as she's coming over tomorrow and it happens to be her birthday.  I can't put it off any longer.

Do you have an RTW confession to get off your chest?

Go for it!

23 comments:

  1. I've made a few purchases at H&M - can't stand the labels! But I can get stylish clothes for my boys. Believe it or not, they have lost suit jackets, so I don't like to spend a lot of money on them.

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  2. i think your cape mention (in jest?) made me realize what that ensemble reminds me of: EVIL KNIEVEL.

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  3. Yep, purchased a few high waist, vintage (mum style jean patterns on ebay a few weeks ago) before my patience and confidence crumbled and succumbed to a RTW pair online (enroute as we speak). I still feel guilty as I mostly make everything else I own these days.

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  4. Today I'm struggling through the making of a flannel shirt for my oldest boy and rather wishing I'd gone the RTW route for him.
    My youngest boy would tell you that capes complete every ensemble and will help you keep your secret identity safe.

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  5. I am over RTW this week. For a dear friend, and ONLY a very dear friend would have survived asking, I am altering three brand new garments. I loathe doing alterations so much I just put up with bad fit issues in my own, for goodness sake! So, RTW with its stupid cuts and shapes is NOT my friend this week.

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  6. I would love to visit that mother of pearl display! I love mother of pearl button and save every one I get my hands on and they end up on some of my favorite homemade blouses. I never wear RTW except for underwear and sweaters, and I haven't bought a sweater in years.

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  7. I love Donny Osmond! I can't believe you passed up an orange jumpsuit with your name on it. That more than makes up for the tank top.

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  8. I had a RTW weakness moment recently and bought a fitted knit dress from Uniqlo. It's a simple cut that I could easily make myself, but the fabric is what made me do it- it's a beautiful, heavy, 100% cotton knit! I can never find cotton knits that nice! I just couldn't resist. :)

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  9. You should have bought that jumpsuit - a jumpsuit with your name on it!!! We are all fallible and tempted by the cheap prices.. especially for the everyday wear that really has no 'wow' factor. You can only hope it came from a more reputable company.

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  10. In the 70s, we saw pants like that all the time--Dittos-- feel the fit!

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  11. Oh honey, that pattern is a Leisure Suit. Completely different territory from a jumpsuit. Kind of Bee Gees.
    As for RTW, I'll cop to Eileen Fisher, because I sew so slowly I'd be running around in my underwear otherwise. I know it's a granny brand, but they do do ethical manufacturing and fabric sourcing.

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  12. Hey, I was at the flea today, too. Kept my eyes peeled for YOU but alas.... I scored a great eyeglass frame, a piece of pottery and a book on Jack Lenor Larson, fabric designer. I was actually wearing the only item of clothing I have made for myself in ages. I saw the fabric from one of your previous posts while at Mood and I bought it in the shades of oceans blue AND beige plus other knits and I am going to join the DIY trend.

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  13. Those trousers are great - so flattering to the rump. I've not bought RTW in ages and I'm in danger of becoming puritanical about it! (I need to have a word with myself). Rachel ☺

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  14. I buy most of my tank tops at h&m. They are very well made and stay in shape for ever. And really, I don't think H&M is so bad. They make an effort with their H&M Conscious line, recycling, etc... and I once saw a study that showed that they were the least toxic (for you, for the planet) of a bunch of brands, many of them high end.

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  15. I love the seaming on 1970s pants. I wonder if it also makes them more fitted? I guess we'll have to find out when you make them!

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  16. There's a sometimes fine line between working conditions and a job and I'd hate for one to cost the other. I try to make my clothing purchases last for years (and learning to sew -- rather, learning to mend -- was the initial reason I bought a machine) and I buy vintage for price/recycling/style.

    That McCall's ensemble is really very cool, both pant and top. The seaming is interesting and flattering and the illustration (tucked-in) is definitely sexier although both are attractive. The bell bottom with the tighter fit at the seat/crotch/waist is such a great, classic shape.

    If you make this outfit (and I really hope you do, unlike the jumpsuit), I'd encourage you to include some embroidery decor. Guys frequently wore embroidered shirts in the '50s (and the '70s) and I'd like to see that kind of detailing make a comeback. Some of the embroidery I see on clothing looks really home-ec and crafty and not very stylish but the graphic/geometric/abstract designs of the '50s were intriguing and beautiful.

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  17. The guy on the pattern envelope looks like KC from KC and the Sunshine Band. Those pants are reminiscent of those tight fitting Angel's Flight pants. All those buttons remind me of treasure chest. XS on the tank top? biyatch

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  18. I also recently fell for some cheap tanks from Target, although mine will be for layering. I didn't buy new RTW all last year so I can forgive myself. I'd rather put my sewing time towards something more fun!

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  19. Elvis has entered the building!

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  20. I think of all the jumpsuits you put on your blog, the one that I prefer is the cropped one. It's soooo fancy!! Please, please, please make that one, not the Elvis one.

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  21. One word about those labels- NAFTA.
    Make the 2 pieces, not a jumpsuit. I'll pull out my senior prom dress from 1978 and we can do a photoshoot together : )

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