SSS days 22-24 – vacation wardrobe in action

It turns out it’s much harder to get good outfit shots on vacation than I thought – these are real “action” shots, in the sense that I didn’t just check the mirror, make sure my hair is okay, find the perfect pose and take gazillions of shots to choose the best one…

But anyway, here’s day 22, our 3rd day in Hawaii, worn to the National Botanical Gardens:

I bought this fabric back in May at Stonemountain and Daughter in Berkeley with exactly this dress in mind, but no pattern.  I have a couple Old Navy knit dresses in this style, and I thought maybe I could trace one and duplicate it that way, but I’m a chicken so I went looking for a commercial pattern.  You know how hard it is to find a two-triangle-bodice-with-midriff-band-and-spaghetti-straps dress pattern? There aren’t any for knits.  So this is Butterick 5181, another pattern for wovens I converted to knit.  It may have been easier to trace my existing dress. I eliminated the center back seam/zipper, took a half inch off the center front midriff and center back midriff and bodice, another half inch off the side seams, eliminated the front and back bodice darts, gathered under the bust a little, and made the skirt about 8 inches narrower total (the skirt is drafted to have a ton of gathering, and I didn’t want the fullness, plus I didn’t have enough fabric). It turned out pretty good in the end, and I’m happy that for once when I bought fabric without a pattern in mind it turned out exactly as I intended it to (instead of turning into something else entirely or languishing in the stash). The one thing I did notice as I wore it was that it started off fitting around the midriff, and by the middle of the day it was much too large… must have stretched out! It’s a rayon knit without much recovery, I guess, but hopefully it’ll shape back up when I wash it. Full pattern review is here. Oh, and here it is in action at the tree where they found the eggs in Jurassic Park. They filmed that in the Botanical Garden, as well as the most recent Pirates movie, which I carefully ignored on the plane ride over, but I clearly should have watched so I would have recognised all the locations!

On day 23, we started at the beach, getting some snorkeling in despite it being really, really windy.  I wore this beach coverup, which was one of the first things I made – trying to catch the shirring craze:

It’s a cotton print I found in the bulk bin at the local fabric store, a little on-the-nose for Hawaii, but okay. I used the Heather Ross Mendocino sundress pattern, which I was excited about since I’s seen so many people have made really cute ones, but it was a pain to sew.  Granted, the shape is nice, and it’s easy to wear, but what’s keeping me from making another one is the memory of how annoying it was to sew that many rows of shirring.  I’ve avoided shirring ever since, though I really should give it another shot, I guess.

Later in the day we took a downhill bike tour of Waimea Canyon, and I wore my jersey skirt from day 8 (with shorts underneath!) for the ride.  It was really fun and the canyon is beautiful, I highly recommend it if you visit Kauai. Here’s me and the other half at one of the canyon lookouts:

More adventures on day 23 – we took a boat tour up the Na Pali coast and out by Ni’ihau where we snorkeled. I wore my second version of McCall’s 6347 (racerback view), originally reviewed here. I did make the armholes much higher on this new version, and cut the shoulders at an XS rather than a S, and it worked much better.  Instead of a tie in back, I made a loop that I sewed in place around the straps, for a flatter back.  I highly recommend this view of the pattern if you want a super quick, easy, no fuss knit dress. It made a good swimsuit coverup for the ride out!

I’m on a boat!


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