Wool-lovers

 Frocks and Frou FrouFrocks and Frou Frou Frocks and Frou Frou Frocks and Frou FrouTop: Dorothy Perkins

Cardigan: Woolovers

Skirt: Asos

Tights: Sonsee

Shoes: Comfortview Regina

Belt: Closet Confessions Boutique

 

It’s been a really cold start to winter in Melbourne – the coldest in 65 years, apparently – and my staple range of stretchy cotton cardigans really isn’t cutting the mustard in the keeping-me-warm stakes.

After shivering through the last days of autumn, I thought I’d take advantage of the free world-wide delivery, and multi-buy discounts at Woolovers and get a few merino/cashmere blend cardigans to wear this winter. I’m so glad I did because they’re snuggly warm and great quality for the price.

I’ve been wearing this russetty-orange number for a couple of weeks now, and it’s still in great condition. It hasn’t lost its shape, or become hilariously pilly, and while it’s not as butter-soft as my pure cashmere cardigans, it’s still soft enough to wear against the skin without feeling like I’ve been attacked by a swarm of bees.

I’ve been so impressed with the range of colours that I have to tell you that they’re probably going to be my go-to shop whenever I’m looking for cardigans from now on. They’ve got cotton cardigans and cotton-silk blend cardigans which will be nice as the weather warms up. And they’ve got some pieces with stripes or polkadots too – yay! I like the way they’ve got actual measurements for width, length, and sleeve length. I bought L’s, and they fit my F-cups fine. You can shop by colour, which means that (just letting you know) there’s an entire section for mustard yellow cardigans.

If you’re interested in snapping up a couple then I’ll let you know that when I placed my order with Woolovers they sent me a 10% discount offer to share with other first-time customers. Just click here for the code.

Frocks and Frou FrouBelt: Closet Confessions Boutique

Meanwhile, in other news, I’ve discovered my dream belt! This classy little piece is from blogger Caitlin Bradley’s online shop Closet Confessions Boutique. Caitlin’s started the shop towards the end of last year, and has cherry picked some really cute rockabilly-styled pieces including dresses, skirts, accessories, handbags, and these OMGCUTE bow belts that I spotted on Instagram and knew I’d have to add to my wardrobe. They’re a steal at just $12, come in six different colours, and fit up to a 50″ waist, so win-win-win as far as I’m concerned.

 

Make a Chicwish

Frocks and Frou Frou Frocks and Frou Frou Frocks and Frou FrouSkirt: Remixed from Chicwish

Cardigan (Eugenie Cashmere, no longer available): Similar Here

Shoes: Naturalizer

I love the print on this “Neon Lights” midi skirt from Chicwish. It reminds me of streetlights on rainy nights, and confetti, and has such glorious rich colours. I fell hard for it when I saw it for the first time but was destined to be disappointed, because the largest size (the XXXL) was still too small for my waist. But it kept popping up on my Pinterest feed again and again with all of its rainy-nightness, and confettishness, and glorious rich colours, so when I discovered it had been reduced to just $48 (with free shipping) I couldn’t resist, and I decided to take the plunge and buy it.

I’m so glad I did, because there was more the enough material in the pleats to remix it (or “fat hack” as gorgeous Amy from Willow Curves calls it).

When it arrived I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the fabric, if not the quality of the workmanship. The fabric’s a lovely heavy satin, which gives the colours a wonderful glow. The image is printed on to the fabric, but both side seams showed a wonky strip of plain white a centimetre or two wide, which would have really annoyed me if I hadn’t been going to unpick the whole thing anyway. The skirt had pockets (which I couldn’t be bothered to retain), and a petticoat-lining that gave great volume, but was vaguely… I don’t know… plasticky? It rustled like a cheap sleeping bag if you even looked at it sideways. I discarded the petticoat immediately, and to be honest if you’ve got hips you don’t need it; the fabric is heavy enough to give it a bit of fouff.

 So, no step-by-step tutorial, because the whole thing was a disaster of trial and error as I tried to decide between waistband-vs-elastic/pleats-vs-gathers/box pleats-vs-knife pleats, etc etc. And because I’m an idiot, I trialled-and-errored with the actual skirt, rather than starting with a toile, and close-up you can see where I’ve had to unpick and re-sew half a dozen times in the fabric, sigh.

Frocks and Frou FrouThe skirt originally came with a multitude of open pleats, but eventually I decided it would be more flattering on my shape to have a flat front, then six sewn knife-pleats towards the sides. It meant that there was less volume to the skirt, and the pleats would follow the curve of my hips rather than flowing out straight from the waist. Again, you can see from the photo below that the printed fabric has given a little where the pleats were sewn, but I might just go over the seams with a blue fabric pen, and I think it’ll be virtually indiscernible.

Frocks and Frou FrouThe waistband is made from excess fabric that I took from the sides of the skirt. I did the same thing in this DIY pleated skirt tutorial. It’s easy as pie, and honestly if I’d spent less time faffing about being indecisive and trying to make calculations about pleat quantity and size the rest of the project would have been too.

Chicwish does some lovely skirts, with fabrics I’ve never seen on offer elsewhere. Now that I’ve done this one I’m more confident about remixing others if I see another piece I fall in love with (like the Sing a Love Song skirt, ahem)

Chicwish skirtSo here’s the before and after and don’t think I’m being arrogant, but I think I like mine better!