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Vest, Turtleneck, and Leggings Ensemble


by Janet White
from Threads #136, p. 74

Christo and Jeanne-Claude’s The Gates installation in Manhattan inspired this three-piece outfit. Janet White paired the orange silk dupioni fabric that matched the Gates color scheme with gray nylon spandex for the turtleneck and leggings. The subtle details and beautiful craftsmanship are noted in the edging of the long vest with twelve concentric rows of rattail-corded trapunto. Janet mitered the rows at each corner and again when single rat-tails emerged to form button loops. She envisions wearing her garment to a jazz club.

Go to www.christojeanneclaude.net/tg.shtml to see the original inspiration.

This garment was recognized for Most Imaginative Use of Material and Design in the 2007 Threads Association of Sewing and Design Professionals challenge to create garments inspired by art.


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  1. denise | | #1

    I just love this look, advice please in Australia we are going in to summer.
    Is the above a fashion item in the u.s. winter. I would just love to make it next winter, even though i am 60 size
    u.s. 12/14 16 aust. I am wondering if others think it may be to young for our age group. I picture really nice pumps and black stockings nice matching shirt.
    As i have said in gatherings there is just not enough fashion ideas out there for our age group.
    Dear threads how about some older ladies in middle years as models.

  2. karen1011 | | #2

    I agree with denise, what about middle age women and ones that don't have "the perfect body". I am 46 and believe me, I don't have that body, I am size 14.

  3. gailete | | #3

    I'm an even bigger size and as each pattern company releases their latest styles I'm saddened that no one other than Butterick's Connie Crawford line is even attempting to really address the needs of an older, larger, dare I say saggier body in a fashionable but yet wearable way.

    I love to wear jumpers as they are comfy without cutting you off at the waist but hubby isn't thrilled with the look. This one is very nice with a lot of great details.

  4. D_signs | | #4

    This is the first time I have commented, but would like to let you all know about Connie Crawford's line. I have about 17 of her patterns...she has many more than the Butterick catalog now carries. Just look at fashionpatterns.com to see what she has created for those of us that are a bit lumpy and bumpy. She draped me in June, 2008 for the bodice because I am a 44A on top and 2X bottom...she graded it up and sent both copies to NY so Butterick could include such an odd shape. Of course, I got to keep one too. I brought it home and made a shoulder princess and armhole princess from the basic and then sewed them up. They fit! She also solved an armhole problem I had with twisting of the sleeve by adding a little fabric on the back of the sleeve cap. I just did not have enough fabric. Connie just plain knows what she is doing and I appreciate that knowledge so much. If any of you are ever close to where she is giving a seminar at a local sewing expo, sign up for it and plan on learning a great deal about pattern making and alteration. She and her husband travel about 6 months out of the year doing expos and teaching. She will be in Fennimore, WI again the first weekend of June, 2009.

  5. OPStitcher | | #5

    Gorgeous vest/tunic. Love the trapunto detailing. At 55+ I might not pair this with tights or leggings, rather I'd take it a bit shorter & put it over slim slacks or a straight skirt in a dark neutral.

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