Hello dears. Welcome to our home of the bright red door! Besides the delightful colors of our flower garden surrounding the entrance to our house, dear, wonderful Dad painted us a very eye catching front door. He made it a summer project last year to “upgrade” the original burnt umber wood stain to the velvet red you see now. This bold statement is nothing new to our family, for the extravagant color red has always seemed to make its appearance in nearly all of the houses we’ve lived in. Ready for a little Boyer family history?
We once lived in a split-level home that had an ugly, brass framed fireplace with a tacky, white painted stone chimney in the living room. It was a yucky room to say the least, but the fireplace was just an eyesore! Mom and Dad painted that whole house, top to bottom, giving it a fresh new face. Ah, the good old memories… But it gets better–when they got to the fireplace, lipstick red was painted over the brass frame, and shiny metallic silver replaced the boring white. Through the help of mellow yellow walls, and powder blue accents, the drab living room was turned into a stunning, retro inspired work of art. You could say it was the favorite room in the house after that. 🙂
Family story over, you came to see this outfit! 😉
My blouse: Carefully stitched into the color of this sunshine yellow blouse is my initial J, and the number 17 for my 17th birthday (several years ago). When our birthdays come around, Brigi has a habit of asking if we would like her to sew us something. She is always so eager to work with her hands to make us something special, that Charlotte and I–believe it or not–have the hardest time trying to come up with an idea that would satisfy both her and us. That sounds funny, wanting to satisfy her, but like all things, the gift must be economical, not overly complicated, and of course, fun. So when my 17th birthday came around, I was ready with an idea.
Before the event of my birthday, we were blessed with several boxes worth of patterns, thanks to the thoughtfulness of a good friend, ranging from the ’60s–early ’80s. I picked out an early ’70s blouse pattern, size 14. This was the only adorable blouse pattern in the new pattern stash whose measurements matched up with my torso measurements, so it was a perfect match. Brigi agreed that it was a doable project, and went to work right away, ordering me a little over a yard of tissue-light, yellow cotton voile. I was terribly excited over the prospect of a new blouse!
Top: Simplicity Pattern 6245 – Brigid Made / Pants: Palazzo Pants – Me-Made / Shoes: Thrifted / Hair bow: Me-Made
Would you believe it? The blouse, beautiful as it was, turned into a flop. Everything was sewn correctly, and nothing was ruined, so to speak, but the fit… it just wasn’t right. The actual blouse looked so much different on me than it did on the pattern illustration, and that is where I made my error. Like I said, this was several years ago, so I didn’t know that pattern illustrations are nothing more than caricatured exaggerations of what the actual garments will look like in the end. I was thinking that the actual torso part of the blouse would end up slightly more fitted and flattering, but it didn’t. Instead, the high empire waist and roomy torso made it look more or less like a cute maternity blouse. Not the look I was going for!
After giving it a few tries, and failing with each attempt to try to wear Brigi’s beautiful gift, the blouse was put away in the far corner of my closet. Brigi asked about it once or twice, and finally, not wanting to skirt around the facts, I explained to her that I was fooled by the pattern illustration, and didn’t think the blouse flattered me. She was as disappointed as I was, probably more so though because she made it, but she agreed that it really didn’t flatter me.
So, for several years I stared at the blouse that hung uselessly on its respected hanger, until just a week ago…
I pulled it out of its hiding place, bent on making it work with my other vintage garments. In irritation I put it on, and looked at it. EUREKA! I had the most ingenious inspiration! And I think you could say it was the idea that saved the blouse! I reached for my palazzo pants, stuffed the hem of my blouse in the pant waist, and snipped off the awkwardly high ties hanging at the sides of the blouse, made a bow out of one of the ties, and pinned it into my “Curly Top” hair. I stood back and… It was perfectly thirties! I couldn’t believe it! After all that time, and it just took a simple tucking in of the blouse hem to nip it in at the waist! The silhouette was perfect; the seam under the bust, the statement collar and sleeves paired with the flaring palazzo pants was just perfect! Well, I felt glorious and like a dunce all in the same moment. And then I waltzed downstairs to show off my new discovery to the family. They didn’t even recognize the blouse. ^_^
This post is a story of encouragement to all you ladies who have that one odd garment in your closet that you just can’t figure out how to incorporate with the rest of your outfits. It can be done! You just have to think outside the box, and try wearing something the wrong way. The best part is, with the fun pointed angles of the color and sleeve cuffs, this blouse not only works for ’30s, but it works for the ’40s too. Actually, as I write I am wearing it tucked into a yellow plaid skirt, and the look is quite fetching.
So go find that oddball garment, and make it useful, make it work with the rest of your closet, and if it doesn’t now, then be patient; something will come along that will make it cohesive with your wardrobe. 🙂
Do you have a statement front door?
Do you have an odd garment hiding away in your closet?
Can you relate to my experience?
Blessings in Him!
Jessica, the Eldest Sister & Singer