My Sew-Sew Life-Linen Chambray Tunic

I just finished a new linen tunic, finally. I’ve only had this Craftsy project kit for 2 & 1/2 years! When daughter Michelle saw me wearing it, she just shook her head and exclaimed, “Mom, I can’t believe you did something so hippy dippy!”

Hippy Dippy? Me? (OK, once in a while). I actually don’t think this is so hippy dippy, but maybe an early 60’s breezy beach vibe comes to mind.

front

The pattern that came with the kit was Simplicity 4149. Frankly, I would not bought this pattern on its own,  but I really wanted the chambray linen that came with it. In the beginning, I even considered using a different pattern for my linen. But as you can see, I stuck with the original one.

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As Time Went By…

This pattern is rated an easy-to-sew pattern. However, during the two years this project sat around, I found ways to just make it a littler more harder and more time consuming.

Side

In spring ’17 (thinking I was going to make this tunic last summer), I decided it needed fringe. I didn’t want what we typically think of fringe (think kitchen café curtains from the 60’s). I had no idea what I was looking for,but  just knew I would know when I found it. I did find exactly what I wanted at Bingus Pingus Art on ETSY  which was four yards of French vintage cotton tape fringe trim in an off white color…perfect!

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fringe created from what looks like cotton tape used in tailoring

As my project sat around for year two, I decided that all those stitches on my Baby-Lock sewing machine were going to waste. So why not add some embellishing stitches? And not just along the edges but as an overall pattern. Did I underestimate how long this was going to take? Well, of course I did!

Embroidery

The Sewing Nitty Gritty

As I mentioned in the intro, this is linen. It’s wonderfully cool but it will wrinkle and you have to live with the wrinkles. I’ve read a few articles on how to prepare linen so it won’t wrinkle as much, but I’ve yet to try any of them.

To be on the safe side, I marked each row of embroidery with a water-soluble blue marker pin so I would go crooked with my stitches. Also, I used cut strips of Pellon’s 541 Wash-N-Gone Stabilizer  behind each row of embroidery. I did a test with and without the stabilizer backing. The stitches looked a lot better with the stabilizer and its a breeze getting the stabilizer washed out.

Now, if I was going to add stitches to silk, velvet or wool, I would use a light weight tear away stabilizer. Believe me, they make a stabilizer for every purpose.

Embroidery stabilizer has its uses in other home sewing projects and this was one of them. I will always some type of stabilizer when I’m adding decorative stitches.  That is, if I decide to spend hours making pretty stitches again.

Mom taught me that a garment’s inside had to look as good as its outside so I fretted about the fringe edge. I don’t know if I can clearly explain what I came up with but I’m going to give it a go.

I doubled the hem over my fringe edge and then hand stitched. That means I did have two rows of hand stitching, one attaching the hem to the fringe tape and on the top just like you would finishing a hem on any garment. Clear? Probably not, but I gave it my best. It’s something I came up with on the spur of the moment because I couldn’t stand seeing the tape edge on the inside of my top.

Linen fabric frays. There are a few ways to take care of this: line the garment (sort of negates wanting to keep super-cool thought), serge all edges (one problem there, I haven’t taken time to learn my new serger), bind all seams or French seams. I love the look of French seams so that was what I used. However, I did use self-binding (I had enough fabric) around my armholes.

hem
The hem turned down on top of the fringe edge.

Back To Fashion

OK, I didn’t mean to literally turn my back but I did embellish the back too. I have a pet peeve when a garment has something cool on the front and they didn’t bother with the back.

back

Sewing is one of the parts of my style and fashion expression. I continue to be grateful to my mother for teaching me my way around a spool of thread and a needle.

Knowing just a smidgen about how to raise or lower a hem, take in a side seam here and there can open up so many possibilities of what one can wear–especially if you are exploring thrifted items.

Really Back To Fashion

White Restyled Jeans

My cropped white pants were originally a pair of White House/Black Market long jeans  found at Salvation Army. There were zippers on the bottom but the legs were too wide and it just looked wrong. Form and function were not working. Rather than re-donating them, I cut the legs off and turned them into cropped pants.  Finally, I am getting some wear out of them. Plus, I have two really cool 6” zippers if I can figure out what to do with them!

Later, I will probably try my tunic with other bottoms but for now the white works for me.

Coach Crossbody Bag

Have you ever gotten something, wore it once and then forgot about it? That’s what happened to this little Coach Crossbody. I’m pretty sure I bought this the spring I retired (2012), wore it once to the zoo with my sister, put it away and never thought about it again.

That changed when I rediscovered it and started carrying it this week. I think the Periwinkle against the grey, black and white is a striking color contrast. So why did I forget about it?

The problem for me with smaller bags has always been my wallet. I finally found the perfect solution with an Accessed Denied RFID card carrier. It’s takes care of all my important cards that I need and has opened up using smaller for  every day.

 

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My game changer-It’s a handy dandy little thing. Even when I do carry my wallet, I still keep my important things in this and keep it in an interior zipped pocket. 

 

Back to my Coach logo bag; after getting this bag, I decided that I was done with any logo patterned bags by Coach.

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My Love of Keds

Ever since I was a kid, I have loved white Keds. When I found these tripled walls on clearance on Amazon last fall, there was no question that I was going to get them.

Does white canvas take extra work? Yes, but I love them so I clean them with either a potato scrubber brush or a fingernail brush after wearing. It just takes a few minutes and I am so happy when I have a pair of bright white Keds on!

I wonder if I’m alone in still liking something from my childhood. Does anyone else have something that they still enjoy, do or wear since they were a kid?

The Most Obvious Accessory

Yes, I’m sporting a wig today.  I am now a believer in them for a change of pace, solutions for older thinning hair and hey, just for fun! I’m not going to say more because this topic deserves a post all of its own. My daughters and I now all wear wigs (I was the last convert). In a future post we three are going to collaborate on why we “wig out” and each of us have very different stories to tell.

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What Kind of Blogger Am I?

Lately, I’ve been mulling over what type of blogger I am. I  read a few blogs that are  blended or covering a variety of topics. Lately, I think MeadowTree Style is a blended fashion blog. Why? Well, there are three reasons; I enjoy writing about:

  1. fashion and with an emphasis on slow fashion
  2. Sewing and occasionally knitting
  3. 3. Fashion History-Until the end of December, my fashion history commentary will be only on Instagram but next year my fashion history musings will be here.

So there you have it; a little style, a dallop DIY and a tad bit of history and I’m a happy camper! That’s it for this post. I’ll see you in a couple of weeks when I back for September’s Slow Fashion Walk.

 

However, The 1st. Friday’s Slow Fashion Walk is still going on for August, in fact, until August 31st.  So you still have time to join up with your slow fashion takes and be in next months collage.

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To link up, Just click the blue button below and it will take you to a new page. Copy your URL, crop your photo and that is just about it.

Visit some of the other bloggers and above all else have some fun.

I link up with some great blogs every week. To see who they are go HERE.

Michael gets credit for the photos of me for today’s’ effort.

Again, thanks for stopping by. Take care……..

namemistrial

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37 thoughts on “My Sew-Sew Life-Linen Chambray Tunic

  1. I adore everything about that tunic! I wouldn’t have the patience for the embellishment but the fringe isn’t fabulous. I need to sew again ( I say this every time I see something great)!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Tell you what, Maggie. I had no idea how long each row was going to take. I really underestimated the time involved. There were times that i would skip a couple of days and do something else because of how tedious it was so I totally understand your point. But, when all said and done, for me, it really gives it a that unique individualistic look I was after.

      But the fringe is the main show. I love ETSY for finding off the wall things like that. Take care
      xox Terri

      Like

  2. I noticed the wig right away but I thought maybe you changed your hair!!
    This project reminds me of some of my knitting projects….they can take years and years!!
    What a great idea to crop those jeans…that’s something I would totally do!!
    XOOX
    Jodie
    http://www.jtouchofstyle.com
    ps…I added Nancy to the slow fashion walk because her top is handed down from me which was given to me by a friend!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I figured you would know how these projects go sometimes and a knitting project can last waaaaaaaaay lot longer than this tunic. I am starting on a new knitting endeavor (actually today) and hopefully will get some sewing done at the same time.

      Jodie, I will tell, I never had enough hair for this style ever and certainly not now as my haired a thinned little by little since turning 60. Thanks for linking up again-the more the merrier my collage!

      Like

  3. Love the tunic – and your post about it’s creation. I’ve had my current sewing machine since 2005 and last week was the first time I’ve used any of the fancy stitches. You did such a great job – I’m inspired.

    Love the wig too – I’m really interested in your future ‘wig post’. I’ve considered one – old/thinning hair. Just haven’t had the nerve to take the plunge.

    Whatever your blogging style is – keep it up – I enjoyed this one

    Iris
    http://www.IrisOriginalsRamblings.com

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Iris, hello and thank you for visiting my blog and leaving kind words.

      I’ve bought my Babylock in 2010l a couple of years before I retired. I seriously used a few of my decorative stitches to make the girls tote bags and then nothing until this top so we have something in common there.
      I am going to be on the girls to schedule a deadline for this “our hair” post because this is an important conversation, especially for us older ladies who don’t like what is happening to our hair.

      Also, it so nice to discover another older creative blogger. I’ve already been over to your world and see you like Barbie dolls too. Take care, Terri

      PS-I’m adding you to my reader list.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Patti, no my hair is way to thin to have a style like this. I have finally seen the light and took the gigantic step and bought a couple of wigs, first one in my now grey and then one in my natural hair color (OK, minus the highlights) before I started dying my hair blond.
      Terri

      Like

  4. That’s a beautiful tunic and great looking capris. I love the hair…. pls do tell us about wigs. This one looks terrific –the color and the style. Well done!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for dropping by Linda
      Trust me, I am going to start nagging the girls about when they can get their blurbs written. We talked about it earlier this year, but that was before I went full wig. Having a ‘Messenger” conference with them is on top of my list this week.
      I am so glad I cut those jeans off rather than donating them back! They were exactly what my top needed.
      Take care, Terri

      Like

    1. HI, Carmen

      Thank you for dropping by and leaving a word! I knew I couldn’t be the only one who got an occasion surprise of, “Oh, I forgot about you!”.
      As far as today’s wigs, I am blown away by their technology. It has been a whole new world with a lot of new terms to use. The synthetic fibers are so lifelike and they are so much easier to take care of. It has opened up so many possibilities for my hair. Take care,
      xox Terri

      Like

    1. Hello Maria!
      Wigs are amazing these days. There are still the party wigs as they say, but then there are ones like these-incredible synthetics.

      I’m glad my tunic turned out nicely because it only took me 2 1/2 years to get around to it!
      xox
      Terri

      Like

  5. You have great patience Terri. This is beautifully stitched and looks lovely on you.
    I could not tell you were wearing a wig. It looked like you had changed your colour. I look forward to your wig post. It is something I have been contemplating to cover my grey and add a bit of fun. 🌼

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think the one thing knitting all these years has taught me is to have patience. So no matter how long I think I’m spending on my sewing, I know knitting it would take forever!

      I am happy that I finally took the plunge on wigs. I was lucky that I had Michelle who already wore wigs and watching how much fun she was having just rubbed off on me. I’ve been already thinking about what I want to do for our collaboration and think we will try to do it towards the end of September or beginning of October.

      Like

    1. Thank you Maureen,

      It was nice to find a good way to use some of my decorative stitches on a garment rather than a utilitarian object such as a tote bag.

      Charbray and white were made for each other since half of Charbray is made up of white yarn.
      xox

      Like

  6. What a beautiful well made top and as you know, I love a bit of boho!
    I’ve told you before that I like your natural hair but the change of look with the wig is fun and it really suits you too. I had no idea you were a natural brunette!! xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Life is full of surprises! I almost forgot I was a brunette until I wast going through some old teacher photos from school. I still had brown hair in ’06. I really do like wigs. They alleviate the problem if my hair is going to look good.

      I’m glad you like the top. For a while, I thought it was going to look dowdy but it looks just fine with the right kind of pants. xox Terri

      Like

    1. Thank you, Sharmon

      Well, to begin with this is a hobby and I’m retired so that means I have the time and I’m not doing this for a living. It did take longer than i instantiated but I would do it again if I thought it would help the peice I was working on. Love your site, especially that sweatshirt, Take care xox Terri

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Wow, thank you for the idea of embroidery stitches!!! I really like your linen top a lot. You look gorgeous in it. I nearly didn´t recognize you with your new ´hair style`, but I think it´s a good idea for autumn/winter and it suits you very much.
    I am grateful to my father for teaching me how to handle a sewing machine. It makes my life richer and saves me a lot of money. From my opinion it´s one of the best hobbies there are!
    xoxo Reni

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Reni. The stitches did take me a while to do but I went at slow speed to make sure I didn’t go off my marks. I listen to podcasts when I’m doing them and that makes it not so boring.

      I am happy that I finally am trying wigs. For various of reasons, both my daughters wear them and it just took me a while.

      Do you think sewing saves money these days? I’ve always attributed fast fashion as one of the demises of sewing as a hobby. But we get a durable and quality product when we make it ourselves. Outside of the creativity, that is an important point for me.
      xoxo Terri

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Hi Terry,
        I don’t think sewing saves money. Only if I make an exquisit piece of silk or so. That was the case when I made the wedding dress for my best friend Doro. But for me it’s not the intention. It’s such a satisfaction when I finish a piece. And I keep all my self made pieces because it would break my heart to give them away after all this work!
        XOXO Reni

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Oh gosh, what an amazing piece you’ve created! I’m literally dying for that French seam tape fringe. I will now spend the rest of my life searching for the same. But if I were to find it, I would put it in my sewing box (ha ha ha ha, as if I ever sewed) and save it forever and ever, afraid to “ruin” or waste it.

    So funny, I JUST put my wig (leftover from chemo days) on yesterday, thinking it might be fun in a photo shoot with a specific dress. In the end I didn’t do it but so funny that I’d see you in one today!

    Bettye
    https://fashionschlub.com

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Bettye, I will admit that I have a bit left over that I need to figure out what to do with. It’s less than a yard so it is pretty much rendered useless. I might (if I have time) make Sophia (my main Poodle) a little linen bandana with it around the edge.

      I’ll tell you, I’m a believer in wigs now. I don’t have extremely thinning hair, but now in my late 60’s it’s nowhere as thick as it was in my 50’s and i can always have a good hair day when I wear a wig.

      Do you sew? I’m am always trying to find fashion bloggers that also sew. Take care,
      xoxo
      Terri

      Like

  9. Hi Terri!
    I know I have also thought about how my blog has changed since the beginning. I used to write all fashion, and now, have dedicated one day ( Fri) to any midlife or personal topic I choose to write about, which is enjoyable.
    You surprised me with your wig! I thought you colored your hair! It looks wonderful and fun to have a choice, so neat your daughters wear them too!
    I have been buying more on Poshmark lately and also buying on other thrifting sites, I will be there for your Sept party!
    Wonderful job on your lovely tunic, and I like the crossbody bag with it!
    jess xx
    http://www.elegantlydressedandstylish.com

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Jess,
      September is going to be here before we know it! I’m knew i wan’t the only one branching out from “what I’m wearing”. Outside of my hair, I probably don’t really have no ideas about doing anything else besides as the creative DIY and fashion history. I’m only publishing twice a month now and that has become the best solution for me.

      So you have been exploring other sites. I will be interested in what you think of the ones you’ve bought from.

      xoxo Terri

      Like

    1. Thank you Emma, I think learning to sew is easier than learning to knit and you have a product much quicker. I need to use this little bag more-it has been so useful this summer. Thank you for having the linkup. Take care,
      xoxo
      Terri

      Like

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