Sewing Projects 13: The “Sydney Memories” Outfit

Originally written for, and posted at, The Sew Weekly. Theme: City Inspiration
The Facts
Fabric: Australian “Kangaroo Fan” cotton $14, rayon striped knit- I’m calling it free.
Pattern: Simplicity 2512 (skirt) and Stretch & Sew 1505 (top)
Year: 2009 and 1979
Notions: 7″ zipper $1
Time to complete: ~8 hours (8 episodes of All On The Line)
First worn: Just for pics
Wear again? Too right!
Total price: $15

If you peeked at my blog within the last few weeks you may have seen that I was obsessing and freaking out over this challenge because I was stumped. I had to do Sydney but my mind was blank on how to translate that into clothes. But then divine inspiration struck (or something) and I stumbled over this purple cotton in a fabric shop close to my work that I’d never been to before – because they keep weird hours and it’s slightly inconvenient to get to.
They are a tiny place but cram in a TON of fabric, and there were four full shelves of Australian Aboriginal prints from M&S Textiles Australia. I saw this print by Nambooka first in red and also in orange. I thought it was pretty neat with the wave/scallop pattern but the colors weren’t doing it for me. Then I moved a quilt block sample that was hanging and obscuring part of the shelf and there it was, in purple. With only slightly more than a yard left on the bolt. I had to have it!!

Sure, it’s sort of expensive for cotton but when you’ve gotta have it, you’ve gotta have it amirite?!
So as to why I “had” to do Sydney, I went to Sydney Uni for grad school a few years ago. I was taking the opportunity to help further my career so I could be super serious, successful, single, career lady. Then I met this American guy at orientation for international students and we sort of never stopped hanging out after that. And now we’re back in the US and married.
Doing this challenge meant I had an extra reason to be sentimental about our time in Sydney. The purple is for the jacarandas in bloom – which bloom in November (spring) and are not native to Australia, (thanks, Trish!) but there is an old one in the quad at Usyd (and a few more around campus) that I’m sure all of us students are fond of. I thought the grey/white stripe was reminiscent of the tile on the Opera House….I guess. It’s a stretch, I know.


About EBS

Museum curator, nerd, chronic watcher of TV show marathons, married to a soccer hooligan, vegetarian, obsessive sewer.
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