Wednesday 20 December 2023

Holiday sewing

In September we had one of those "once in a lifetime" holidays. Only it wasn't a one-off, but an exact repeat of the holiday that Flipper and I had in 2006. Sometimes a really great trip needs repeating.

I'm over at the Oliver + S blog sharing all the Liesl + Co patterns I made to take on the holiday with us, including gifts for our kayaking guides. Go check it out. The pattern count numbers 6 Metro Ts and 2 pair of Wynwood swim shorts. Plus, I also took my Sintra Dress and my Cinema Dress on holiday.

Just before we left the big kid realised he's lost a pair of swim trunks somewhere, so he got two new pairs of Ottobre Seamus (03-2009) swim trunks

And he'd also outgrown his boardshorts, so I added two new pairs of the Jalie 2678 boardshorts, again with a cargo pocket addition.

Our kayaking trip was a 7 day trip paddling in the Yasawa islands of Fiji with Southern Sea Ventures. We revisited the same village that we'd stayed in 17 years earlier and even met some of the same people again. I can't begin to describe how great the trip was, the company, the guiding, the ocean, the people.... Can't possibly show you all the pics, but here's a selection from each day...

Our guides were so fabulous. Semi, the Fijian local was quietly funny, always organised and calm and just the nicest, hard working guy. He wore an amazing palm frond hat that his mum wove, so I made him a kayaking T-shirt with his hat stencilled on it.

Russell, the Canadian guide is too awesome for words. It only takes a quick look at his Instagram (seriously, check this out) to realise that paddling tourists around the Yasawas must have been pretty dull, but he never showed it. He was funny, organised, hard working and always up for anything. Bit like Barbie there seemed to be nothing he hadn't done, or couldn't put his hand to trying. He impressed P with being a box lacrosse player, wowed A with his ability to pull of a gymnast backflip and all of us when the guitar came out and of course he could play and sing. But, BUT, he couldn't whip cream*  when it came to our dessert at Navotua village. And that alone will never be forgotten! :)
*the lack of a whisk or beater shall not be mentioned

Of course his kayaking top needed to have a white water kayaker and a whisk on it!

I added the hood from the Jalie skating skinsuit pattern 3135 (all my previous versions here) but sadly didn't think of how much higher the neckline is on that pattern than the Metro T I was using. I got P to try in to before I posted it....

And oops, the hood pulls far too much when it's on. Ah well, it can still be some kind of a back of neck sun protection even if it can't be worn.

After the week of "roughing it" (seriously, we were so well looked after, but composting toilets and no internet still counts, right?) we crossed Fiji to stay on a little island just off the coast from Suva. Toberua island resort is a tiny resort with just a dozen bures around a central pool, a dive shop and a beachside restaurant/bar. Everything is catered and during the morning the staff would find us, bringing the menu for lunch and dinner. The barman recognised Flipper from 17 years earlier! P did a pool dive then joined us for his first ever scuba dive. We all ate too much, drank too many mocktails/cocktails and played all day long.

I'd argue this is a once-in-a-lifetime holiday that would easily stand up to a third round!

Tuesday 5 December 2023

Classic white shirts

Way back when I first made the Liesl + Co Classic shirt (here) I promptly went on the search for the perfect fabric to make a white version. I found the fabric, along with a couple of others, and stashed them. Good ideas never go away, so three year later I have some new shirts.

The impetus to finally make the shirts came from having just finished knitting myself a shawl (blog post coming soon) and suddenly deciding I needed a plain white shirt to wear it with.

However, before I made the shirt I decided a white shirt would need a pair of black ponte pants to wear it with. I actually made them first and then never got around to photographing them. They're the same Vogue9284 pants that I'm wearing in the photos above, although these initial navy ones are definitely too short. I added length to them to get the new black ones the same as the brown ones here

The shirt is the Liesl + Co Classic shirt. I added 2" of length knowing that I wanted to wear it over slim pants more like a tunic. I also added 3/4" to the sleeve length.

This fabric is a divine cotton with a tiny herringbone weave stripe. It adds just enough texture and interest to prevent it looking like bedsheet fabric. I found it at Phillips Shirts which was the first place I went after making the original Classic shirt, knowing I'd find what I wanted there or nowhere.

Of course I found more than one fabric I liked, and so while I was contemplating this shirt, I also decided I needed another Recital pleated shirt.

This one hasn't had a photoshoot of it's own, but I've worn it heaps and snapped a few selfies. It's also a shirting from Phillip's Shirts, but must be a poly blend as it doesn't come out of the wash in a bad state at all, and that's great for someone like me who hates ironing.

It's a very pale, ice blue with a tiny woven pattern. Again I added a little bit of sleeve length (and then always wear them unbuttoned and turned up anyway) and 2" of body length

It was the knitting that prompted the shirts, and the shirts that prompted the black pants. All of which are well loved garments now.

Details: Liesl + Co Classic Shirt and Recital shirt
Fabric: Cotton and poly/cotton shirtings from Phillips
Size: 10
Modifications: 2" body length and 3/4" sleeve length