Friday, February 6, 2009

Circus Sideshow or Luscious Lioness?

Apparently I enjoy posing dilemmas using alliteration.

So I'm working on the BWOF 09-2008-110 big shirt. When I first saw it in the magazine I just skipped right over it because I thought it was ridiculous. Somehow it wriggled into my brain, though, and I found myself drawn to the idea of making it. When I bought the hot pink knit for my mom and then decided the color wouldn't suit her, I had to make it into *something* to justify the purchase so I thought, well, why not the crazy big shirt.

Daniel V's Orchid Blouse What had inclined me more toward the pattern was remembering Daniel Vosovic's orchid blouse from Project Runway, Season 2, Episode 8; you can see more photos courtesy of the fabulous boys of Project Rungay. It's a very fashion-y silhouette, but I think the blouse is (just barely) wearable by a real person. BWOF's knit version takes it down a notch to make it even a little more wearable than that. Although you may find this hard to believe, I really don't have any casual but chic--as opposed to cute--winter tops to wear with jeans to meet up with friends on the weekends, so this was added to the project queue. (Winter tops are my nemesis, as you know.)

Being inspired by Daniel V's orchid blouse and looking at the photo in BWOF, in which it appears to be almost a sweatshirt knit to get the collar so poofy, I wanted to make sure my collar had enough body, so I interfaced it and underlined with tulle. Taking another look at BWOF's photo, however, and comparing it to the versions that have been made on PR I think that, in fact, their's is just a regular knit and they didn't do anything to add body to the collar, and I like the way the collar lays on the versions bbgrilla and Marita Kinnula made.

I first put it together on Wednesday and immediately dismissed it as clownish and/or Shakespearean and was about to cut out the tulle and rip off the interfacing, but knew I had to give it at least a day to get used to it. When I put it back on last night it had kind of grown on me. There's a fine line between edgey and ridiculous. While I sometimes intentionally step over that line, here I am hoping to stay more on the interesting-but-cool side.

Collar Dilemma

Thoughts? Opinions? Suggestions? (With the usual caveat that advice often helps me make up my mind...by helping me realize I want to do the exact opposite of what is being advised.)

**EDIT to say** LindsayT very reasonably asks why I'm just showing the top half here. Simple answer: It's not done! I still have to put on the sleeve cuffs and hip band. I will finish it up before making the final decision on the collar (which is still pinned) but I wanted to get input before people unplugged from the computer for the weekend.

And, in honor of LindsayT who is excellent about posting interesting polls, I've added my first poll on this burning issue!

=======================

In the "You know you have a problem when..." category, last night I dreamed about buying fabric. It hasn't even been a month since I last bought fabric, and I don't usually buy fabric more than once a month. So the very idea of buying 6 yards a month is giving me nightmares already! This is bad.

=======================

If you like food blogs you must check out Ipso Fatto. She is one of my work colleagues and holy cow is her baking good. She made the cupcakes for another colleague's wedding party. This was a week ago today and I am still fantasizing about them. I should have snuck one into my purse and kept it in the freezer for emergencies. We had a going away party with a New York theme yesterday for a higher up and she made black and white cookies for it. I got there just in time to see the last one snatched off the plate. I considered fighting for it, but figured I should gracefully let it go. I guess it keeps fantasizing room in my head for the red velvet cupcakes!

=======================

Speaking of blogs: the Kreative Blogger Award! Thank you to all who have nominated me for this award! I am so honored that so many people singled out my blog: Linda, dyeabolical, Nancy (nanflan), sew4fun, Sherril, Barbara, MarySews, Alexandra, Laura, and E (and I hope I've not missed too many people). I am going to break the rules, though, and refer to Carolyn's post about passing the award along. I spent the first half of my life being...not unpopular, because that would indicate people took enough notice of me to make me affirmatively unpopular. More like invisible. Somehow in college I found myself popular on campus. Not in the sense of being the homecoming queen (though I was actually nominated for the court, which is crazy) or popular with the boys, just in that people knew who I was and respected me. It was pretty great. And I think it's a self-perpetuating thing--it gave me enough confidence to carry it over into law school and my professional life.

But I think you never really get over that junior high feeling, no matter how much it is rectified afterward. I don't want anyone to feel overlooked or invisible, because that feeling is still surprisingly fresh in me. If you are on my blog roll, I read you and love you and try to comment on your blog as often as possible. If I don't know who you are yet, speak out! I'd love to get to know you.

27 comments:

Lindsay T said...

Why just the top half in the photo? I think I need to see the head-to-toe look to make an honest assessment. I like the color on you and think it may be working as a casual, fun top...

Christina said...

Luscious lioness! Don't change the collar.

Nancy K said...

I am in the middle here. I voted for luscious, but i really have mixed feelings. The collar is good, but the body of it is very full on you.

Little Hunting Creek said...

I like it so far; will it have a belt? black, wide, sort of biker-chickesque? worn with a black straight skirt? or? my daughter says she wants leather to counteract the poofy girliness. Just suggesting so you can decide the opposite

Evie said...

I'm loving the colour on you but agree with Lindsay T that I'd like to see it full length. I'm thinking the fullness issue may be addressed once the bottom band is in place.

Elaray said...

I can't make up my mind to vote on that top! It definitely isn't my style, but I know people, including you, Trena, who could carry it off! I love the lioness claws pose, btw!!!

sewducky said...

It's a beautiful color and looks great on you, but I'm not a fan of this look or the pleated collar look (what I refer to the Onion Blossom shirt). It's a lot of look, to coin a phrase, and you wear it not the other way around, which is good, and you can pull the look off...just it's not what I would like to wear. And removing that from the equation, evaluating it becomes a lot easier. It is a bold color, and the design is bold which makes this one hell of a statement piece that is done masterfully.

I'm not going to vote because my first reaction is "Oh wow..honey no" (I don't like the silhouette) and when I get over the knee jerk reaction, I can see it is cute (on you) and it's worn very well. I agree you need a belt, and possibly a full length picture to get the whole effect. Since this is "is it you?" then the answer would have to be yes, and in that respect, then it's a great top and I think you've done a great job in that.

Gosh, now I'm getting dull and growing boring here over fashion choices. I may need a nap.

Sewfast said...

I love the collar. I hope this comment doesn't lead you to throw the garment in the trash!!! I think it is fun and look forward to your finished project.

Claudine said...

If you are going to go out on a limb with one element in a garment, it's best to stay conservative with other elements. A kind of outrageous design + a kind of outrageous color = too much. Notice how Daniel and WOF both chose neutrals. Could you dye it black?

This is JMHO, and you could totally get away with wearing this if you have the right attitude. But as it stands, this garment is not for just anyone.

mj said...

I think you've got two options- make the hip band and wear the top as a tunic with skinny jeans and pencil skirts, or leave the bottom loose and tenty, and belt the waist when you wear it. Either way, I think you should go for it and be proud.

Cindy said...

I like the collar and the color is great on you! It looks a bit full on you but maybe the bands will help.right now I am visualizing it as a short dress and tights--and like it!

Cindy Lou said...

I agree with Claudine that you want to pick one design feature and go with it... BUT-- I guess I don't think that your color in itself is a loud design feature. Now, had you chosen plaid, or a crazy animal print... yeah. But I think this top, with this neckline, and this color, is great!
The question is how to finish it. The Burda version has a toned-down version of the Lion's Mane (clown collar? Henry VIII look?) at the sleeve. I think I'd nix that in favor of a cuff that brings in the sleeve's width in a very, very simple way. I'd actually echo the simplicity of the hip band at the arms, leaving the collar as the only 'wide open' design feature.
And BTW... I think it looks really great! I love the color. I think this would look super with black skinny jeans!

elbereth said...

I skipped this one too because I'm 5'1.75 (hehe) and thought it would be too ballooney. I think your color is fabulous (like the new hat, right?) and the collar turned out great. The middle needs more shape, though. I'm sure the hip band and pockets will make a big difference visually.

Meg said...

I like the collar and the colour is gorgeous!

Sally said...

The collar looks great. Gives me inspiration to perhaps make that top as well. I did note that a similar sort of collar has appeared in one of the big three patterns in the past month or so - can't remember which one.

I think it will be fantastic with a plain black pair or pants or a skirt.

BeeBee said...

I'm going to have to wait until I see the whole thing. Gut reaction is not good, I'm with Claudine on the maybe too much? But I'm not voting or writing in ink (#2 Pencil with eraser only) until I see the finished top. I tend to change my mind when I look at it longer. I'll give you points just for trying, though. I ran from this one like my butt was on fire.

marysews said...

I think the collar "might" be better without the extra stuff in it. I like the color, though!

Vicki said...

Mmm. I am not fussed with the colour on you. Maybe I need to see it in real life..but heck who cares what I think if you love it!? I don't like the collar either..but if you like it and get it to work for you, then you will no doubt look pretty cool, like you always do :))

Marita said...

I like the color on you too, you wear very well pink,violet, turquoise et al and the collar looks nice too, wouldn't change a thing. I fell in love with the shirt the moment I saw it, it's prolly the Shakesperian feel in it, can't wait to see your finished blouse.

badmomgoodmom said...

I like the color. The collar is interesting and not overwhelming. But the volume of the top is alarming on a small frame. If you put on the bottom bands, will you feel like a berry? Do you remember the 1980s pouf sweater?

I, too, could barely get a date in HS to save my life. But I wasn't on (college) campus for a week before I got my first marriage proposal. That one was a tongue-in-cheek attempt to get my phone #, but the change in popularity with men was surprising.

emelle said...

I like the collar, even though you are a petite, I think you can carry it off, with attitutde.

I am not so sure about the combo of the hot pink and the collar though...there may be a reason it was gray in BWOF. I would vote to finish it up and see what a belt or bottom band does...do not discard at this point.

-E said...

Ok, I thought long and hard about it, because I totally know what you mean about Daniel's outfit... when I watched that episode, I wanted to dislike it, but there was something about it- I just loved it. I wanted to be the woman to pull it off.

So I was thinking about your collar, and when I clicked back to it just now... something wasn't right about it. I think it might need to be bigger.

Kelly said...

I love the color! It is beautiful and works very well on you and to tell you the truth your version of this collar is better then the original. I am just not so sure about the rest of the shirt. It seems as if you are swimming in it. I feel the shirt needs more shaping. I would add the cuffs but take the shirt in more. I can not wait to see what you decide to do.

k

Emo said...

I am sympathetic to the need for winter weekend tops. I think this needs a belt. I think you can tell that from (a) the fact that the Daniel garment is belted and (b) the fact that it's effectively "belted" by the silly way the BWOF model is standing...

Anonymous said...

Hmmmmmm. I like the color, but I am worried about that line you mentioned. Either way, it would make wonderful lounge/sewing wear!! I looks quite comfortable!
Linda

Carole said...

I like the color on you and I think it's a perfect funky but chic little top.

Mely5862 said...

Beautiful color. I think the collar would be fine if the body wasn't so loose and drapey. I think you look better with close fitting outfits. ie. the recent sweater dress. This needs that same shaping to work on your frame. My two cents. Disregard as needed