Simplicity 1803, Simplicity 1783


 Simplicity Patterns 1783 and 8013


Simplicity Patterns 1783 and 8013
Simplicity 1803, Simplicity 1783
Simplicity 1803, Simplicity 1783

Hi everyone! Me again. So. It’s official. Yep. Gillian, from Crafting a Rainbow dropped the bait, and I bit. I’m participating in #Sewing Dares. What is, you ask? It’s a fun challenge masterminded by Gillian. It’s unique because it’s tailored for the individual. No two people will have the exact same #sewingdare. Why, you ask? Well…it’s totally for fun. But more than that, being dared is motivating. My dare also got me thinking about being a kid, sewing for Barbie, playing dress-up….all kinds of things really. Here’s how it played out…

Me: Dare me, dare me. But something sewing related please. I’m having childhood flashbacks of hanging upside down from the monkey bars in a dress.

Gillian: I dare you to sew something inspired by a childhood outfit or an old favourite item that’s been lost/worn out/outdated. Give an old classic a new twist.

Up first…research. According to the photo albums, I was clearly all over the two piece matching outfit when I was a kid. Dress over shorts, cropped top over capris, jacket over pants…I remember them well. It was fun seeing that my love for colour and pattern was evident even at a young age. ‘Nuf said, the look is decided…we’re going for matchywear.

….I blame it on Dior and I. After seeing the film, not only is everything sublime, but I have this urge to design. And so I gleefully hacked away at Simplicity 1803, adding length, fullness and in-seam pockets to the bodice pieces. The pants, my trusty Simplicity 1783, are sans pockets and with the zipper relocated to the side seam. For continuity matchiness, I added v-notched hems to both top and pants. Gah….I had way more trouble with the top than I should have. When I was playing designer, I muslined the top with a high-low hem, and I thought it looked nice. But when I sewed the garment in the good fabric, it looked wrong…just…so wrong. So that was a job….unpicking two rows of machine stitching and re-cutting the hem. Then there was the gaping at the armhole. ‘Course, that wasn’t evident until after sewing on the self-fabric bias tape. Still…all in all, I think the effort was worth it. I have summer weight matchywear, just like years ago. I can’t say it’s sublime, but in 100% cotton, it’s cool, comfortable, and fun to wear. Fabric is Artisan Spirit-Shimmer-Peacock by Deborah Edwards. It’s difficult to see, but it has a pretty metallic gold dot throughout the print.

Now? Did I play it too safe, asks me? That’s my biggest question mark with this make. The fabric is definitely colourful and patterned, but it’s reading as a solid. I’m wondering if I should try a #sewingdares part II and use a more sixties inspired fabric? Or hey, how ’bout a cropped top….bwaaahahhaha…now, that be crazy talk.

All righty….whadya think? Do you have a memory of a favourite childhood outfit? Do you have a sewing dare for me? Please do dish….

Simplicity 1803 : : Also seen here
Simplicity 1783 : : Also seen here and here



  • Reply Ms Neti* June 5, 2015 at 1:24 pm

    I Love everything about this outfit and you look Fabulous. Enjoy!

  • Reply Gillian June 5, 2015 at 2:04 pm

    I love what you made! It may read as a solid from afar, but what a gorgeous colour! (But if the urge hits to do a more sixties graphic look, far be it from me to hold you back! 🙂

  • Reply Sox June 5, 2015 at 4:49 pm

    I love the outfit. (Patterned) turquoise looks lovely on you.
    My favourite outfit when I was little was a dress over shorts with the hem of the shorts being only fractionally longer than the dress hem. We called the ensemble 'hot pants', but when I google hot pants now, I just find short-shorts. Maybe our version was a Manitoba thing.
    I'm thinking of turning one of my dresses into a dress-over-shorts ensemble, but the dress is a solid purple, not a groovy sixties print.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 5, 2015 at 5:19 pm

    Thank you! This could work for lovely Florida sunshine I think!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 5, 2015 at 5:20 pm

    Thank you Gillian! I'm not sure which I loved more, the sewing, or the dare behind the sewing. I guess I just love an outside story, or influence. Brings out the creative side!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 5, 2015 at 5:22 pm

    Yes! Yes! Hot pants is what they were called. I'd be a bit nervous about looking those up on the Internet, LOL. But seriously, I had several of these. I put the little black and white photo in the with the orange dress to show that I was wearing shorts underneath. I was tempted to do a hot pants version, but uncertain of how the look would be on my fifty four year self!

  • Reply Lori June 5, 2015 at 5:37 pm

    I love this outfit it looks fabulous and so Barbie! 🙂

  • Reply Connie June 5, 2015 at 5:49 pm

    Oh yes! We used to match all the time. It was the thing to do. I had so many outfits just like yours when I was a kiddo. And you have recreated it Sublimely. I don't know why people don't like to match their outfits any more. My brain wants things to match but my spirit says No Way. You are a Genius with a Sewing Machine.

  • Reply Hana VR June 5, 2015 at 7:09 pm

    Fabulous outfit! Love the color and the details. Great work and pictures as always 🙂

  • Reply Debbie Iles June 5, 2015 at 8:24 pm

    Very nice Matchywear!

  • Reply amy mayen June 5, 2015 at 8:29 pm

    It's a perfect color for you! I love your matchy wear. Also I want to pilfer through your jewelry collection! This outfit is a great look for you:)

  • Reply June 5, 2015 at 10:07 pm

    What a cool interpretation of the theme. That colour is great on you. Love your photos

  • Reply Sew, Jean Margaret June 6, 2015 at 12:06 am

    Love your choice of fabric and those notched hems are a lovely detail. great outfit!

  • Reply Curtise June 6, 2015 at 2:02 am

    No, I don't think it's playing safe to choose a bright colour, even if the print is tiny, but. I've got to say that the same outfit in a big bold 1960s print would look even MORE fabulous! I love it, Sue, you look amazing.
    As for further dares… Hmmm, how about a jumpsuit? (I'm in the process of making one myself at the moment, not sure it's going to work but I'm trying, and I'd love to see you make a really good version!) xxxx

  • Reply MIS PAPELICOS -Mis P June 6, 2015 at 3:33 am

    I wish I could saw something so glorious.
    You look stunning Sue

  • Reply MaryEllen June 6, 2015 at 7:51 am

    The matchy match is great on this outfit. It's a throwback with a modern twist. Great job – I especially love the top . I'm working on a Belcarra in an expensive fabric -for me . It's a really pretty floral that up close matches lots of my skirts , but from a few feet away its blah . Dragging my feet to finish

  • Reply Tamera Beardsley June 6, 2015 at 7:59 am

    Marvelous post my dear! I always think the best outfit posts are the ones with a story … of how the outfit came to be … and this is one of the very beds I've seen! I love everything about it … from the fantastic outfit perfectly shot and styled … and just as much for the nostalgic look back and referencing for a brand new design … and then the execution and craftsmanship! Biggest of kudos my dear! You have me wanting to go and look back at what I wore!


  • Reply PinhouseP June 6, 2015 at 10:45 am

    You took this sewing dare in your stride! The set looks great, and what cool inspiration to use. I would never have thought about getting inspiration from my own childhood wardrobe. So cool 😀

  • Reply Joni James June 6, 2015 at 7:05 pm

    Darling!! I love this two piece outfit. And is your hair cut shorter in a new cute shape or is it pulled up somehow?
    One of my favorite outfits in my childhood was a little white sailor dress with a red stripe around the bottom and a blue ribbon around the bibbed neckline. 😉

  • Reply josep-maria badia June 7, 2015 at 3:58 am

    Long time no see your precious suggestions and your handmade dresses so pretty. I reopened my blog recently and I am recovering blogs that I liked. Greetings.

  • Reply oona balloona June 7, 2015 at 6:38 am

    that gillian thinks up the best dares! i love your mashup of mini matchy you. i love that you think a matchy bright turquoise set is playing it safe ;)))). you look lovely!

  • Reply Anonymous June 7, 2015 at 8:53 am

    Just found your blog and seeing all this color makes me happy. I love love love it. Now that I am trying to sew my wardrobe , I gravitate towards funky and ethnic prints with lots of color.

  • Reply jodie filogomo June 7, 2015 at 1:19 pm

    I don't think this is too safe….it looks so wonderful. And especially the cut out in the front adds some nice interest! Heck, if you want to go risky, you can break up the set and pair it with? (so much to choose from) jodie

  • Reply dan June 7, 2015 at 1:47 pm

    Beautiful suit and, yes, you dared!! That remind me a wonderful suit my mother used to wear in the 70's ( but it had a completely different print ) … yours has a very nice neckline !
    Matched clothes are feminine, I like !

  • Reply Val S June 7, 2015 at 1:53 pm

    Sue, Sue, I love your hair! And your tres chic matchywear!

    Seriously, you look very classy and happy, and you're really sewing outside the lines now. What a fab outfit!

  • Reply Merche Martinez June 7, 2015 at 2:50 pm

    I agree with Val, you look great with your new hairstyle! And the outfit is just perfect. I love every modification you made on the top pattern. Besides that colour looks great on you…and the background!!
    Wonderful photos and wonderful smile
    Lots of love!

  • Reply Nadine in NC June 7, 2015 at 2:56 pm

    This is so beautiful! I love the fabric, the design, and oh do I love that you put pocket in it. And all the result of a sewing dare. 🙂 Great job!

  • Reply Margo B June 7, 2015 at 6:15 pm

    Good dare!! Great outfit! If I think back to my childhood wardrobe…swishy dresses were my favorite! Not much has changed I guess. 🙂

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:20 pm

    OMG…you're totally right. I just need a head scarf and a pink convertible! That would be awesome!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:22 pm

    Oh goody…not just me then. Matchiness seems to come around every so often with designers, but it seldom makes it to ready to wear.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:22 pm

    Thanks Hana! You have some pretty awesome photo locations yourself!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:23 pm

    Thanks Debbie! Now, I can totally see some cool matchywear with your fantastic patterns. Congrats on your business!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:25 pm

    Thanks Amy…lovin' that teeny, tiny photo of you….very Ralph Lauren does country! The jewels…I used to thrift shop my wardrobe, but since I starting sewing passionately, I seldom buy clothing. I will pick up a bracelet if I'm in a thrift store though. 50 cents, $1.00 there and suddenly I've got a pretty large collection of arm candy!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:26 pm

    Thanks Barbara! Speaking of great colours….red looks better than awesome on me too… Hint, hint. Hopefully, a post is coming soon. xo

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:27 pm

    Thanks bunches! Sometimes I wonder about the trouble of the details, but then I think again that the beauty is often in the details!

  • Reply Trina June 7, 2015 at 8:27 pm

    Love this dare! Love how it all turned out, just look at that amazing top, oh, I love that top on you. Ok the entire outfit is smashing and so much fun. Yes, I have a favorite childhood memory outfit, it was a red pantsuit, I was so dang proud of this outfit I even snuck outside and roller-skated around the entire neighborhood (I sure trying to show it off a bit). I was the big grown up age of 8.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:29 pm

    OMG….I've got some ideas rolling already Curtise! GAH….thank you, thank you! Suzanne was just posting about jumpsuits, and I think this could be fun! And the 60's print….I KNOW….could be totally cool. Am I brave enough?

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:29 pm

    Thank you Sacramento! You know, you do the most amazing upcycles and DIY's. Glorious too!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:33 pm

    Thanks MaryEllen! I think I have the Belcarra top. Gosh, I have a couple of Sewaholic patterns that I have yet to sew. Maybe the 'blah' feeling is because you're eyeing an unfinished project? Often, when the garment is complete, it takes on a whole other beauty! But, I know the feeling…some projects seem a struggle to finish!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:35 pm

    Thank you so much Tamera! You know, I have my print out of your blogging series right here on my desk. I'm glad you appreciate this post…tells me I'm slowing, but surely getting my blog to where I want it to be! I would be so interested to hear about some of your favourite outfits from childhood. Hopefully a future post? xo

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:37 pm

    Me neither. Gillian picked a good one for me! It really was a lot of fun to play with. I can imagine, hope, that people reading this post might also have a little fun with nostalgia!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:39 pm

    Yep! Hair is short now! It sort of happened gradually from when I started the blog, but this last cut was the most! Feels great in these mini heat wave we're experiencing now! Your sailor dress sounds so cute…a little bit Mary Englebreit even! Interesting that your favourite was a dress, knowing your preference to not wear dresses so much now!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:40 pm

    Hi Josep! I will have to pop on over and revisit your blog! It's so nice to see back! Thank you for the compliment!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:41 pm

    LOL….haha, I never thought about it that way! At this rate, I'll be a walking box of crayons before I'm sixty!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:42 pm

    Yeah! I'm happy, you're happy! Have fun with those prints! They sound totally fabulous!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:43 pm

    Thanks Jodie! I've actually worn this outfit a couple of times this week! And then today, I just wore the pants with a t-shirt! You're right, there is so much to choose from!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:45 pm

    It did not occur to me until you said it…matched clothing is feminine somehow! Thank you for pointing that out Dan! And for this outfit to remind you of something your mother wore is very flattering. You are always so chic, and I imagine you might get that from your mother?

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:46 pm

    A poet in our midst! Thank you Val! I hope things are going well with you. We're all waiting to hear about the job opportunity….yes, let's call it opportunity!!!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:47 pm

    Thanks Merche! The background was a lot of fun! I should have mentioned it in the post…it's actually a bus stop! Fortunately, no buses stopped there when we were taking photos!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:49 pm

    Thank you Nadine! I KNOW….POCKETS! It's funny how crazy we get for pockets, but they are a must have. I knew I didn't want them in the pants…too bulky. Fortunately, they worked out well in the top. Although, I did construct the top in a slightly different order due to the pockets, and it turned out I had to take a side front seam out to turn the top rightside out….long story, and really difficult to explain. It all worked out in the end!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:50 pm

    Aw….Margo…you were clearly born to wear dresses! I can so imagine you cute as a button with long hair and ribbons and swishy dresses! Adorable…now I want to dare you to remake a favourite childhood dress.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 7, 2015 at 8:52 pm

    Oh WOW! A red pantsuit sounds completely awesome! Please tell me that your roller skates were the originals…not inlines. Oh my gosh….remember the key? Those were the days! I think I could do a whole blog on the good 'ol days, LOL. Thanks Trina!

  • Reply V June 8, 2015 at 11:27 am

    Oh I love it! In my very favorite of colors no less. I should like to steal it, but I'm sure you wear it too well to suit me. My youth was filled with wondrous dresses, lovingly hand sewn by my grandmothers, mother, aunt, and when I was old enough to run the machine, by me. I remember being super fond of ruffles.

  • Reply Flo June 8, 2015 at 4:25 pm

    What a fun challenge! I love how you took the dress pattern and turned it into a top. And that background you used for your photo session is just too perfect!

  • Reply Suzanne Carillo June 8, 2015 at 5:26 pm

    Wow! This turned out FAB! The neckline especially. It's a very flattering sihlouette and the details like the pockets make it even better.

    I adore that colour on you. And you managed to find the perfect backdrop for shooting.

    I love the old photos of yourself. You look like quite the little firecracker : )

    Childhood outfits I loved? That was when my Grandma made 99% of my clothing and I'm ashamed to say I didn't really care for them. I think it was the fact that both my sister and I got the exact same outfit. I hated having her match me. As soon as I was able to buy my own clothes I never looked back.


  • Reply Annie Case Hanks June 9, 2015 at 6:02 am

    Those photos are precious! And you ended up making something modern, colorful, and wearable! Job well done or should I say, dare well done!

  • Reply TheTellTaleTasha June 9, 2015 at 6:31 am

    I love it! You look great!

  • Reply No Fear of Fashion June 9, 2015 at 1:46 pm

    That was fun…. to see you as a child. Always so nice. And I am all for matchy matchy. I have no idea why it went out if fashion. Let's bring it back. I think your suit looks cute. I can understand that the material looks like a solid colour but that doesn't bother me at all. The solidness of the colour reminds me of your lavender pallazo trouser suit which I like even more. Why? Perhaps I prefer longer trousers on you? No idea. Just thinking out loud here. (Tell me if you prefer I keep my thoughts to myself.)
    I love your V-notched hems. You did some awesome sewing here, changing the pattern like that. My compliments.

  • Reply Chelsea June 10, 2015 at 5:50 am

    I am so impressed you made this two piece outfit! I tried sewing a few years back and just did not have the patience! But it is a skill I SO wish I had!

    Ginger Side of Life

  • Reply Heather June 10, 2015 at 7:59 am

    This great! You did a fantastic job with your dare Sue!
    PS: I am loving your cropped hair too!

  • Reply sewingkm June 10, 2015 at 9:46 am

    I love this outfit! It makes me want to shout out “why did we ever stop wearing matching tops and bottoms?” There is nothing more flattering for most less than perfectly proportioned figures than a continuous line of the same fabric from top to bottom. Now I'm not suggesting that bits of contrasting fabric for collars, cuffs, etc. should be ruled out but I used to wear matching tops and bottoms which made me look much more slender. The effect seems to nullify my long torso and short legs. So good for you starting a new trend!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 11, 2015 at 9:25 am

    Hey V! I never had many ruffles, which may have been more to my Mom's taste, than my own. When I was young, she sewed quite a few cute outfits for me, including the dress shown here. {Probably both outfits, but I really can't remember about the one on the left.} It sounds as though you had a wonderful family of sewers! I can just imagine the pretty dresses you wore!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 11, 2015 at 9:26 am

    It was fun! And I'm moving forward with a 'dare' from Curtise!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 11, 2015 at 9:28 am

    Thanks Suzanne! I'm just realizing that I didn't put in a very good 'frontal' photo. Somehow I edited out the two I had in here. Ah well. I do LOVE this colour!

    Ah….the matchy with the sibling scenario. Not a good idea unless both kids are 100% on board!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 11, 2015 at 9:28 am

    Thanks Annie! Inspiration is a wonderful thing. It was an enjoyable process going from dare to garment completion!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 11, 2015 at 9:29 am

    Thank you so much!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 11, 2015 at 9:31 am

    Thanks Greetje! As always, your thoughts are illuminating and I appreciate them very much! So often, we can get hung up on one aspect of our outfit. To have others reflect and comment is very helpful! I do love the lavender {periwinkle/blue?} trouser suit too…I can only wear those awesome pants with a high shoe because of the length. Of course, it IS the length that is so flattering!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 11, 2015 at 9:32 am

    Thanks Chelsea! Learning a new skill does require some patience, I'll give you that. 🙂

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 11, 2015 at 9:33 am

    Thank you Heather! We've been dared, and we both came through with flying colours!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 11, 2015 at 9:34 am

    Yes! Yes! Yes! Matching tops and bottoms have a way of balancing our uniquely perfect bodies! Maybe that's partly why I enjoy wearing dresses? One line of colour….lots of colour, LOL…but a continuous line of it!

  • Reply Highland Fashionista June 16, 2015 at 9:43 am

    OMG OMG OMG I love this SO much! Very 60s, and I like he sexy keyhole accent on the front of the top. Your hair is also awesome. Everything is awesome, lol!

  • Reply Carmen Varner June 18, 2015 at 4:31 pm

    Well I like it. Matchy wear, coordinte sets, whatever you want to call them, I like it! You look amazing. :]

    // ▲ ▲

  • Reply Melanie June 18, 2015 at 9:40 pm

    You are wrong – it IS sublime! Gold thread, gold shoes, and a tropical fish backdrop. Awesome! I love how you went about this project and the childhood photos you included. Heh. You just let that design goddess take over! This turned out so magnificently. I can't wait to see what's next. Is it a double-dog dare?

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 19, 2015 at 7:05 pm

    Haha…now you've got me trying to think of what word we used instead of awesome. It think everything was 'neat' and 'cool' back then.

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 19, 2015 at 7:05 pm

    Thanks Carmen! Yes, coordinate sets is the more grown up description, I think! Thanks for stopping by!

  • Reply Sue @ A Colourful Canvas June 19, 2015 at 7:06 pm

    If only I could take my background around with me on my daily errands, no? hmmmm…double-dog dare….sounds dangereux!

  • Reply Shirl June 22, 2015 at 4:21 pm

    the color and style of this is gorgeous. Before I became style conscious, my mom dressed me once in striped petal pushers and a flowered top no less. Definetly not matchy matchy by any degree. I got teased in the hood when I was out playing. I was oblivious to style back then, but the teasing brought me out of my stupor, lol……..

  • Reply dan June 23, 2015 at 2:25 am

    Unfortunately that suit doesn't exist any more…a real pity!!

  • Reply Lally July 1, 2015 at 6:05 am

    Oh woah I love it! I love those matchy two sets from childhood and have always wished they were available in adult sizes. It looks fab and especially against that wonderful fishy mural. X

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