My latest two finished projects are both repeats of a sort! And I’m pretty excited about both of them. This is my Shooting Star Bolero and my Cotton + Steel Arrow Dress.
Oh yeah, if you missed that I went red and that photo surprised you, you can catch up on my hair color! Also we very recently painted our den and bedroom (FINALLY OMG) and hung up art, so welcome to a new place for me to take photos! I’ll give you the grand tour of the final room once we have the cellular shades installed. (The bedroom will be a little longer to reveal as we wait for a couple of small furniture pieces to arrive later this summer.) Suffice it to say we’re over the moon about both spaces now!
But back to the topic at had! The yellow bolero is another version of my Knit for Victory bolero, from a pattern I designed for myself (Ravelry project page here). The original is in dk weight but I wanted to try something a little different and used a fingering weight yarn knit at a looser than normal gauge. You can kind of see that it’s a bit more airy in the photo below. It was knit at about 6 stitches per inch. The yarn is Wollmeise Pure from my stash, and the colorway is Sternschnuppe. When I looked that up in German it means shooting star. Hence naming it the Shooting Star Bolero!
The only other change I made was to knit the cuffs and band in seed stitch instead of ribbing, in one size smaller needles than the body (which was knit on size US 4, for reference). This was completely seamless, with the sleeves knit top down and the front band picked up and knit out from the edge.
As it happens I kind of knit it on the fly as my road trip knitting when we went to St. Louis, and my gauge was off, so it’s a tad smaller than I planned. Which is totally my own fault for trying to swatch using my iPhone to measure my gauge and not blocking it. I was stressed out at the time so in that case it was just more important to knit! And thankfully it’s still very wearable, and the fabric is lovely and drapey.
Now for the dress! It’s another version of Simplicity 1523 from 1945 that I used for my Singin’ in the Rain dress, just with a different neckline. The fabric is from Cotton + Steel, which has garnered a lot of well-deserved attention this spring and summer. It’s a new collaboration with five amazing fabric designers, each with their own line of prints, and a few lines of more basic prints that coordinate. Seriously, sooo many amazing fabrics. It makes your head spin!
Rochelle and I were both waiting for months for their launch and put in pre-orders because we were so excited, and the fabric does not disappoint! Very soft for a medium-weight cotton, and it’s lovely to wear.
And HELLO THESE ARROWS. I can’t get over how amazing this print is. The designer is Melody Miller, and it’s from her Mustang line. You really can’t tell but those dots that follow the arrows are gold metallic. I know!
I bought mine from Hawthorne Threads and they’ve already sold out of this print but fear not, looks like more is on the way! (And I know lots of other places are starting to stock Cotton + Steel now too!)
I actually cut the entire dress except the waistband on the cross grain, so the arrows technically should go horizontally. But I really desperately wanted them to be vertical, with them only horizontal on the waistband.
Which would of course require having a wide enough piece of fabric left to cut the waistband on grain. So when you have plans like that, here’s a tip: don’t wait to cut your waistband last! I discovered that I didn’t have a long enough piece to cut it with horizontal arrows. Gah! I spent at least an hour trying to figure out how to piece it together from the skinny strip I had left, which meant there was no way I could match the arrows exactly.
In the end, I managed to make it all work with, and the seam at the side is nearly invisible. Of course it’s not lined up well on the zipper side, but I’m lucky I could even get this part to work!
And I think the placement of those two arrows on the center front totally makes up for that fact, anyway!
I didn’t end up having a navy zipper, so I went in the complete opposite direction of having it match, and picked orange. It’s a fun little flash of color for my lapped zipper!
You may have seen that Lladybird Lauren teamed up with knitwear designer Andi Satterlund for an outfit-along this summer. So these projects are my outfit! Of course, I often plan to knit and sew things to wear together, but I’m always up for an excuse to plan out an outfit. 😉 And I knew immediately how I’d accessorize it—with my 1940s cowboy boots and a tooled leather purse.
(Yep, I moved the coffee table out of the way for photos and then stood in front of it where I moved it. Ha ha!)
Anyway, I adore this dress and I think it pairs great with the bolero, plus I know the bolero will be perfect with plenty of other things in my wardrobe, too. Definitely a successful outfit!
40s dress – made by me
bolero – made by me
40s pee wee cowboy boots – eBay (originally bought for our wedding)
lucite earrings – Leetie Lovendale
tooled leather purse – misc.
Bakelite bangles – misc.
brooch – The Pink Bungaloo