Simplicity 2339


Hey you. It’s me. Here, in my happy place, not looking entirely happy. You see, I had just been to the eye doctor for an unplanned eye exam. The day before…rather suddenly…I found myself seeing little gray dancing spots. A little disturbing. It was, however, the brief flashes of light after I turned out the lights that night, that urged me to see the optometrist the next day. I don’t deny my attraction to sparkly things, but when it comes to my vision…thank you, but no. After the dreaded pupil dilating drops, I received a thorough exam and was deemed healthy. enough. for a 54 year old. Spots and thready wisps, known as floaters, are apparently common in aging eyes. But what about those white flashes? Apparently, they are considered a warning sign for a potentially detached retina…which would be seriously serious. In my case, my doctor has advised me of other signs to be watchful for…helpful yes…but I admit to feeling a little out of my comfort zone. A few friends have had similar experiences and found that it went on for a few months before resolving.

Okay, just a simple make today. Simplicity 2339 shirt pattern, worn with my green skirt. I picked up this turquoise gingham at a thrift store last spring, and the flowery bits are leftovers from my I’m a Bird in Paradise dress. Having less than enough fabric for full sleeves, I cut out what I thought would be 3/4 length, but they shrunk up to my elbows after I turned the cuffs back to reveal the colourful facing. The pink cuff links were another thrift store find. They’ve been languishing in my drawer forever because I have zero shirts that have the necessary buttonholes. I think I would have been happier with green buttons, but at least the pearly pink links add a unique touch.

This fabric is obviously a poly/cotton blend, and it shows in the fit. I made this pattern in the same size as my 99 Pink Balloons dress, but it doesn’t have quite the same ease. {sigh} I really do love natural fibers in general, and cotton specifically. Almost all my makes are 100% cotton. Sure, they wrinkle like crazy, but the fabrication, the weight, the feel, and the endless colour selection…it’s no secret; I’m a little crazy for cotton!

Which brings me to Lucky Lucille’s Spring for Cotton group sewing challenge. The ever lovely Rochelle, of Lucky Lucille, is hosting a Vintage Sewing Challenge for Cotton Fabric Lovers. We are challenged to sew a vintage inspired garment sewn with only 100% cotton fabrics. Although I’m late to the party…the deadline is April 30th….I am so looking forward to playing along!

And last, but not leastest, I will be participating in Me-Made-May 2015. In May 2014 I wore a me-made item of clothing every day. It was a great experiment. Although I had enough clothing, I discovered some wardrobe holes, namely jeans and t-shirts. I’ve since remedied that…having sewn three pairs of each. This year, I quietly pledge to wear an article of me-made clothing a minimum of five days a week. More importantly, I intend to assess the happiness factor of my me-made wardrobe over the coming weeks. Any and all ah-ha moments will be shared early in June. I’ll be posting photos along the way to the Me-Made-May 2015 Flickr group.



  • Reply Iris April 21, 2015 at 1:21 pm

    As always… your outfit! You sew so well…..I don't have the patience for perfection. lol

  • Reply Curtise April 21, 2015 at 1:43 pm

    Te gingham shirt is a beauty, and as always, the trademark Sue touches of contrasting facings, cuffs and those cute cuff links add real personality. Love the green skirt too.
    Hope all will be well with your vision, my dear. xxx

  • Reply Rox April 21, 2015 at 1:56 pm

    The blouse is gorgeous. The colorful details really make it pop. Wow!

  • Reply amy mayen April 21, 2015 at 2:03 pm

    I forgot about me made may!! Love your top, you're right on trend. Very cute!! Hopefully your eyes will feel just fine very soon:)

  • Reply jodie filogomo April 21, 2015 at 2:42 pm

    (if this comment appears twice….I'm sorry…I thought I hit published but then didn't see it…I blame it on my age). I hope your eyes start behaving…at least you are smart enough to get them checked right away! I love the blouse with that skirt ( I, too, love colors). jodie
    ps…I just used a cuff link to hold one of my open weave sweaters together…I'm even showcasing it on a blog post in a couple weeks!!

  • Reply Heather April 21, 2015 at 2:53 pm

    Sue, you look amazing and bright and cheery as always! I love the little floral touches and the pink cufflinks are great!!

    So sorry to hear about your eye troubles – very scary!! I'm glad that you checked out okay and sending you lots of positive vibes so that everything resolves quickly!

  • Reply Carley Lee April 21, 2015 at 3:06 pm

    You are such a talented seamstress, Sue! I admire your skills 🙂
    Sorry to hear about your recent trip to the optometrist – I hope everything sorts itself out in the end! Having something go wrong with our site is a scary thing!

  • Reply Sarah April 21, 2015 at 3:51 pm

    Oh, look how pretty! I love the contrast fabric with the gingham! Gorgeous! Geraniums are one of my favourites and I plant pink and red ones every year.

  • Reply Flo April 21, 2015 at 4:40 pm

    The shirt is so pretty, perfect for a trip to buy flowers. I hope your eyes get back to normal, I remember when that happened to a former boss, he said it was so annoying!

  • Reply Joni James April 21, 2015 at 6:47 pm

    That is disturbing about the eyes. We need them for heaven's sake! I once strained my eyes so bad making jewelry they were both bloodshot and sore in their sockets. Have you ever done that sewing? It's hard on our eyes to focus up close on small things.
    Love your happy blouse! You just keep hanging out in your happy place and your eyes will get the message. 😉

  • Reply Lori April 21, 2015 at 7:36 pm

    So sorry for the eye issue. Your blouse is so gorgeous and I always love your bright colors.

  • Reply Dorothy DotDot April 21, 2015 at 7:52 pm

    Sue, this shirt is beautiful and your pictures are so vibrant!

  • Reply Carelia Moran April 21, 2015 at 9:55 pm

    Hi Sue! First I want to tell you that I hate to hear this is happening to you and I know what you mean about being out of your comfort zone. I injured my back about a month ago and I'm dealing with daily discomfort myself. My best wishes to you and your beautiful eyes! Lets have faith and be positive about it.
    I love look today! You always radiate happiness and of course, you know I love gingham…so these are my favorite looks from you.

  • Reply Vix April 21, 2015 at 10:31 pm

    Oh Sue, I've had isues with my eyes in the past, hope everything turns out well.
    Such a pretty blouse for Spring and I can almost smell the geraniums from here. xxx

  • Reply Anne April 22, 2015 at 5:05 am

    A lovely spring blouse and beautiful flowers. I'm glad your eyes were okay at check up – I hope they settle soon.

  • Reply Glenda April 22, 2015 at 7:48 am

    Ah yes, the dreaded floaters. I have one and boy is it annoying. On to better discussions…

    You look so spring. Like you should be the national representative for the season. How fun your top is, and the colors make me want to sing.

  • Reply Suzanne Carillo April 22, 2015 at 9:04 am

    I've had floaters…loads of them for about 15 years already. You do get used to them but they are very annoying. I hope the rest of your eyes are fine. When I went to see the eye Dr. about mine they also warned me about the detached retina but touch wood…nothing has ever happened. Don't worry yourself sick about it.

    You are looking lovely. Were you back out where we went to eat? It looks like the nursery/restaurant where we also took our photos.


  • Reply Shirl April 22, 2015 at 10:23 am

    Love, love the contrasting fabric in your blouse. You look great amongst all the nursery flowers. I actually have holes in my retina. Have had them for years and just get checked regularly and not having any issues. I pray your issues resolve.


  • Reply Judi Pinkham April 22, 2015 at 11:50 am

    I love your gingham shirt…the facings, etc!!!

    I have had the same eye floaters, flashing lights for about 10 years. It does take a while to get used to the floaters…you will get more…they do not go away, but after a while you won't notice them. I also have had the same flashes of white light after I turn off the lights at night. Yes it is scary. Yes it's due or possibly due to a detached retina. My eye doctor told me they usually heal themselves. And mine did…it took a few months. Then it came back again. And healed itself again. So far…so good. But either way…it's fixable. You will be fine. It won't bother you. After a while.

  • Reply Michelle April 22, 2015 at 12:12 pm

    SQUEE! I LOVE the pops of pattern/color! I'm going to try something similar on a few of the Archer blouses I have cut. Mine won't be as exciting. But, it's wild and thrilling for me. 😀

  • Reply Kezzie April 22, 2015 at 1:19 pm

    Oh no, I hope the eye is ok!!! Worrying!!!! I was running orchestra at school a few months ago and all of a sudden, with a sort of crack, I couldn't see properly, things were blurry and I had flashy lights. The children were really worried about me and made me go to the office.
    That gingham blouse is delightful, really pretty and sunny and OH so you!x

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 22, 2015 at 6:04 pm

    Thanks Iris! You follow DYT, yes? I have a strong secondary 4 energy that serves me well when it comes to sewing details!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 22, 2015 at 6:06 pm

    Thanks Curtise. Thanks for the well wishes too! It means a lot to me. xo

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 22, 2015 at 6:06 pm

    Thank you Rox! Just the word I was looking for…POP! I'm glad you mentioned it!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 22, 2015 at 6:07 pm

    Amy! I know…you are so selfless with your sewing. I'm sure any of your girls could easily wear your handmade clothing for an entire month and more! Thanks for the well wishes!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 22, 2015 at 6:10 pm

    What a clever use of cuff links! I'll be watching for your post. I've seen other cuff links for sale in thrift stores…they can be absolutely decorative! I think I may add more to my collection of one, :). And yes…it's as though my eyes are misbehaving, LOL. Thanks for the cheery words!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 22, 2015 at 6:12 pm

    Aw, thanks Heather! Thank you bunches for sending some positive vibes my way!

    Soooooo? What team colours are you wearing these couple of weeks my friend? I know you're a Calgary girl, but you spend a fair chunk of time in B.C….Me…I'm not really into the whole thing, LOL.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 22, 2015 at 6:13 pm

    Thanks Carley! The upside is that I'm getting a full prescription exam next week. That can only mean one thing…NEW glasses, which I have not had for too many years to count!

    Absolutely love your flower crown on your recent blog post!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 22, 2015 at 6:14 pm

    Geraniums are real work horses in my garden too! We are super lucky here on the west coast. I'll be planting very soon, and they'll go until mid October or so!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 22, 2015 at 6:15 pm

    Once past the scary bit, certainly comes the annoyed bit, LOL. When I read a book, I distract myself by following the dancing dots sometimes! Ah well…

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 22, 2015 at 6:17 pm

    Yikes Joni! I don't recall getting bloodshot eyes from a handicraft project at all. I do have to be somewhat cautious about environmental irritants causing bloodshot eyes though. And you are absolutely right about hanging in my happy place….when I'm involved in doing something that I love, I tend not to notice the floaters!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 22, 2015 at 6:19 pm

    Thanks Lori! One day I just might surprise myself with a softer colour palette, not necessarily muted, but lighter tints! 🙂

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 22, 2015 at 6:20 pm

    Thank you bunches Dorothy! I agree, the setting matches the shirt in my post today!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 22, 2015 at 6:22 pm

    Oh Carelia…wrapping you in big cyber hug. Back issues are impossible to ignore…they really do affect our daily living…thanks for the well wishes and I'm sending positive vibes right back to you for a healthy and happy back! No more back pain my gingham sister!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 22, 2015 at 6:22 pm

    Thanks Vix! I will be channeling your positive life attitude! You rock!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 22, 2015 at 6:24 pm

    Thanks for the well wishes Anne! I haven't planted those flowers yet…they'll be going into pots, but I'm very much looking forward to the task!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 22, 2015 at 6:25 pm

    You too, eh? {There's my Canadian coming out, LOL} Thanks for nomination for national rep for the season….although I think we should share the position! Case in point….your awesome peplum tops!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 22, 2015 at 6:28 pm

    Suzanne! Your words are like a warm hug! Thank you!!!!

    Okay…remember the Christmas store you went to? This is 'it' now! It is a garden store for about half of the year. They have three other stores that are typical nurseries. I AM looking forward to a visit out to Tanglebank Gardens again soon! I'm gonna drag my friend Shirl, below, with me!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 22, 2015 at 6:30 pm

    Thanks Shirl! Did not know that! It's good, really good, that you have regular eye exams. I've been remiss, but appreciate the need to do so! You just might see some new glasses soon….

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 22, 2015 at 6:31 pm

    Thank you so much Judi!

    Thanks so very much for sharing your story! I really do appreciate knowing that your experience sounds, at this point, so very similar! I'm doing my little happy dance now!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 22, 2015 at 6:32 pm

    Tee Hee! Can't wait to see you have some fun with your Archers! Even if it's just the facings, you will get a little giddy when you wear a blouse with a little secret pop of colour or print!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 22, 2015 at 6:33 pm

    Thank you Kezzie for your sweet words! And talk about worrying…your own experience sounds unsettling too! I trust that you are in great form once again! xo

  • Reply Dana April 22, 2015 at 6:58 pm

    Look how adorable you look! I love the way you mix color so seamingly (LOL) effortlessly. Anyway, I love the 3/4 sleeves with cuffs. What a creative way of handling the slight shortage of fabric. Great outfit as always!

  • Reply No Fear of Fashion April 22, 2015 at 10:41 pm

    Serious trouble in paradise. You only have two eyes and you want to keep them healthy. No need to urge you to take care. You will for sure. I hope your retina will calm down and keep put. Like a good little retina should.
    The outfit is ever so lovely. I like the colours, the shape and all the extras you have added like cuff links, flower bits etc. I actually think this length of sleeves is even better than 3/4. At least with this blouse.
    Take care Sue.

  • Reply No Fear of Fashion April 22, 2015 at 10:43 pm

    Forgot to say: great photo shoot. All those flowers and plants make a perfect background. And I like your bracelets with the outfit.

  • Reply Melanie April 22, 2015 at 11:16 pm

    This aging thing sucks!! Yes, eyes. I hope this passes for you. Our body hiccups are so annoying but we hold our breath and drink water upside down (a hiccup cure, works) and hope they stop.
    Your top is best. Cuff links and flower details. All delightful. And your photos in the garden centre are perfect, even if you are not feeling in your ultimate happy place. I love the challenges you've set for yourself and I look forward to seeing how it goes.

  • Reply Annie Case Hanks April 23, 2015 at 4:34 am

    I love the gingham! It is a timeless classic that has made its way back to being trending. The detailing on the shirt is amazing!

  • Reply V April 23, 2015 at 7:39 am

    So Pretty! I do love gingham, but I rarely sew with it. I can never seem to find a really good one. The last couple were so off grain, I left them on the bolt. The little pops of floral color really turn a simple blouse into a serious wow moment.

  • Reply Hana April 23, 2015 at 8:13 am

    I am with everyone… This shirt is so pretty! Love the flower addition and green buttons. I might borrow your idea of adding contrast fabric. Hope your eyes will recover fast 😡

  • Reply Trina April 23, 2015 at 11:12 am

    Love how you say, just a simple shirt, haha. It is anything but simple, at least in my eyes. Even without sewing it myself, it is anything but simple. That pattern mix of gingham and floral has my heart a flutter, quite putting me in a happy place, thats for sure. And being amongst the flowers in the green house is definitely a happy place. Good girl for listening to your eyes and having them checked. Aging has its moment.

  • Reply Louise Perry April 24, 2015 at 1:46 am

    Your MMM15 pledge is excellent, Think this is what I need to do assess my me made wardrobe. Hope it is nothing serious with your vision. Thinking of you. This blouse is beautiful, you have such a knack for putting fabrics together so that they sing.

  • Reply Jan Graham-McMillen April 24, 2015 at 9:05 am

    Hello! Sorry you're having eye probs … but good that your doc is paying attention. Take care of yourself, continue with your good nutritional habits, and get rest! I've had some “tufting” with my retinal connections for the last twenty years, but so far I'm holding fast and my doc said it will probably just stay that way. Sending you my good luck with that!
    You look beautiful in your gingham … I don't know anyone that gingham suits better. So pretty with the florals. As always, an artful job.
    I'm coming out from under my rock for at least a little while. Trying to figure out how to manage my cyber life more effectively, so bear with, please. Lovely to see your pretty face, Sue.

  • Reply sabine April 24, 2015 at 12:04 pm

    You are such a fabulous gardener dear Sue! I love your colorful and feminin look very much.
    What a pity you have problems with your eyes. Take care dear friend!
    Sabine xxx

  • Reply Brighton Hill April 27, 2015 at 5:04 am

    The flowers are gorgeous as is your gingham blouse!

    xo, Bry


  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 28, 2015 at 9:31 pm

    I remember the first time a friend of mine demonstrated drinking water upside down as a hiccup cure….I just couldn't get my head around it, LOL. And funnier? It works for me. I like the analogy, body hiccups! xo

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 28, 2015 at 9:32 pm

    Thanks Annie! It definitely is trending now, but still super challenging to find great selection in the fabric stores.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 28, 2015 at 9:33 pm

    I HEAR you V! Easy enough to find cheap gingham in the basic colours, but if it's off grain, it's impossible to end up with a properly hanging garment in the end. I have found a couple of gingham prints in quilting cotton, but it's just not the same as a true woven gingham.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 28, 2015 at 9:35 pm

    Thanks Hana! I can absolutely imagine you wearing garments that have some contrasting fabric.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 28, 2015 at 9:37 pm

    ….Busted, LOL! I never thought of it that way Trina! I'm happy you happy my friend! Your gardens and flower displays always make me happy too!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 28, 2015 at 9:38 pm

    Thanks Louise! It really does work, and I recommend that you give it a go. It's not about stressing over wearing only me-made clothing in my opinion…but the better understanding of what's working or not is so valuable.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 28, 2015 at 9:40 pm

    Thanks so much for your kind words Jan! Things are already looking {haha} somewhat better, I'm pleased to say. As Melanie said, there are hiccups along the way, and we can only do our best to stay healthy! I was delighted to see your post the other day, and will be popping over to comment soon! Take your time finding out what works best for you!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 28, 2015 at 9:41 pm

    Thanks Sabine, my friend! Hope to show you my flower garden in the summer when things are in full bloom! xoxo

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 28, 2015 at 9:42 pm

    Thanks so much Bry. I'm happy you stopped by and said Hi!

  • Reply oona balloona April 30, 2015 at 6:16 am

    oh lovely sue, don't worry, my peepers have been seeing floaters since i was 13! maybe that's why i like crazy prints so much, it's like floater camouflage– they're more noticeable on a solid surface ;))). so hey! bring on the prints, amirite?

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas April 30, 2015 at 11:49 am

    hahaha…floater camouflage. There could very well be something to that….I never notice the floaters when I'm sewing, LOL. Thanks Oona!

  • Reply Heather April 30, 2015 at 2:57 pm

    Well funny enough, the team colours in my house are red, white and blue. My husband is from Montreal, so we are die hard Montreal Canadiens fans – him by birth, me by association. But having lived in Calgary my whole life – I will always have a soft spot for the Flames. 🙂 Sorry no Canucks love here.

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