Where’s Spot

Frocks and Frou Frou Frocks and Frou Frou Frocks and Frou Frou Frocks and Frou FrouTop: DIY from Aster pattern & Spoonflower fabric

Skirt: Modcloth

Shoes: Rockport

For a few years now I’ve been on the hunt for the perfect dotty top. A couple of years ago I had one made by Loni at Love To Love You on Etsy, and it was wonderful, but recently I’ve been thinking that I quite fancied the idea of having one made with smaller dots.

I spotted this fabric on Spoonflower and thought that it fit the bill, but I didn’t pay much attention to the measurements (rookie mistake) and when the fabric came the dots were much bigger than I’d anticipated. Still, I’d bought Colette’s Aster shirt pattern especially, so I thought I’d give the project a whirl.

The fabric that I chose was the basic cotton, and I’ll be honest – I don’t love it; it feels a bit cheap and crunchy, but the colours are spot on and it washes really well. It’s possible that the fabric will soften over time, but at the moment it’s probably a bit more crisp than I ideally wanted.

Colette’s Aster pattern was also just ooookay. It definitely wasn’t really a beginner-friendly pattern, which surprised me a little, as Colette’s instruction booklets are usually so well written that anyone can follow the steps without too much trouble. The shirt is collarless, but has a lovely yoke at the back.

Frocks and Frou FrouThe instructions for the front placket were kind of inscrutable, and even after I’d finished I wasn’t confident I’d done it correctly. The sleeves were far too long, so I’ve rolled the cuffs, and I also put more buttons in than necessary so that the shirt stood a chance at staying fastened over the Rack of Doom.

Frocks and Frou FrouI found the fit a bit problematic, but the wonderful Laura recently dropped by to teach me how to do a full-bust adjustment, so I’m definitely planning to give it another go down the track (perhaps with a less starchy fabric).

The good thing about this top is that those wonderful watercolour dots will go with everything. Black yellow, red, green, grey, mustard… I’m wearing it with (another) Breathtaking Tiger Lilies skirt from Modcloth.

If you get in quickly, Modcloth has a 25% off Family & Friends sale on right now, with the code F13m64G, and don’t forget, you can get free International shipping for orders over $150.

Remix: Heart to Heart

Frocks and frou frou Frocks and frou frou Frocks and frou frou Frocks and frou frouTop: Remixed, Uniqlo

Skirt: Sera Lilly

Shoes: Seychelles

One of the very first remix projects I did on Frocks and Frou Frou was a big red heart tee way back in 2010. And here I am 6 years later, still putting whopping great red hearts on things. The more things change, the more etc etc…!

In fact, I was actually kind of inspired by the It’s Mutual Tee, which I saw on Modcloth a few weeks ago. At $30 it’s perfectly affordable for US customers, but the Australian dollar’s not being on online-shopper’s friend right now, and I was baulking at the postage charge when I realised what an easy remix project it would be.

heart to heart 1I bought a drapey white tee from Uniqlo, some red fabric paint, and some adhesive foam sheets (though to be honest, that was probably overkill, and you could just use cardboard!)

heart to heart 2First step is to make your heart shape. I always use a piece of paper folded in half to ensure that it’s symmetrical. One you have the size and shape you’re happy with put your top on, and position the heart. Make sure you mark the position with a pin!

Heart to heart 3Now you need to transfer that heart shape onto something that the paint won’t seep through. I used adhesive foam, but as long it’s relatively waterproof (and you’re confident you can stop it from slipping around) you could use anything. Plastic contact paper could be good, and VERY easy to source, what with all the kids going back to school! Trace around the heart shape and cut the middle out.

heart to heart 4Slip a layer of cardboard into the top, and pin the extra fabric to the back so it won’t wriggle about. Position your heart cut-out where you’ve marked, then pour some of your fabric paint into a little bowl.

heart to heart 5A make-up sponge is a good choice for applying the paint. Start with the edges, then cover off the rest. You’ll have to let it dry for 48 hours, but after that the paint won’t budge. Wash, and you’re ready to wear!

Frocks and frou frouAnd here’s the finished product!

I wore it with this fabulous pleated tulle skirt from NZ label Sera Lilly Curve. It’s like a tutu, but a little more appropriate for day-wear. I sized up because I hate tight elasticised waistbands and it’s perfect. I’m a bit nervous about washing it for the first time because the pleats would be a total pain-in-the-ass to iron, but I wore it the other day and did a lot of lolling about on couches and it didn’t crush, so the pleats could very well be permanent.

And if you love the heart tee, but just don’t really have the time or inclination to make it yourself there’s plenty of options to buy ready made!

heart tops1. Heart Slouchy tee / 2. Red Heart Tee Oversized / 3. It’s Mutual Tee / 4. Heart Shirt