“Then Pharaoh took off his signet ring from his hand and put it on Joseph’s hand, and dressed him in [official] vestments of fine linen and put a gold chain around his neck.” Genesis 41:42
I pray all is well with you! I had an amazing weekend that included sewing and spending time with my family,friends and going to church. It was like my favorite hit list of things to do wrapped up in a few days!
I had a great time doing it all but I really wanted to spend sometime talking about this event that I went to Sunday evening called the FIRE Awards (Females in Recognition of Excellence). A friend of mine was being recognized and I decided to go because I wanted to support her but I also liked that you could dress up and was like….. “who doesn’t like to do that.” So I made the DIY statement top and pants that I’ll talk about in a bit.
Back to the FIRE Awards….
I had never heard of it until this year but apparently its in its 3rd year. It recognizes women and girls who are making a difference in the Milwaukee community. While I went for my friend, there were a few awesome women that i’ve known for many years who were being recognized as well. Below are a few shots with just two of the women that I knew. But there were a few others that I knew as well.
There were various categories of recognition that included entrepreneurship, community involvement, perseverance, sistahood, image and art and one award called the Josie Mae Thomas Award. Each of the women recognized had an amazing story and journey that led them to the work that they are doing here in Milwaukee. Which was so inspiring. And each of them when they accepted their awards offered a word of encouragement and some even shed tears when they shared their testimonies with the audience.
What impressed me so much about this event was its sincerity. It was clear to me that this event was birthed from someone’s heart and sincere desire to uplift girls and women. I was also impressed with the fact that their sponsors were small local businesses and individuals who contributed to make sure the event costs were covered. The venue and decorations were beautiful along with all the guests. Everyone was dressed very well, with some wearing evening gowns and others wore dress casual. I chose to live somewhere in the middle. I am really not the evening gown kind of girl. However, I do love what I call “red carpet casual”.
Which leads me to the pattern review and design details of this post.
The entire look was 30’s and 40’s inspired with a modern twist. It featured dropped shoulders and a peplum with a plunge neckline and midriff that I used Vogue 9253 to create the upper bodice and the midriff and peplum were self-drafted. While I love the idea of a plunging neckline the original pattern’s version was a little too plunging for me. Which led me to make the decision to remove about 2.5 inches from the hem of the bodice and create a 3 inch wide midriff instead. This way I could still enjoy the plunge style without feeling too naked lol! I also needed to add an invisible zipper all the way down the back bodice, through the midriff and a few inches down into the peplum in order to be able comfortably get in and out of the top.
The peplum was a bit of a pain as I was playing with the shaping of the peplum. I didn’t want it to be a traditional peplum I wanted it to wrap in the front to create a little bit of drama but still be figure flattering and not look too big. So I spent a little bit of time draping it on my dress form until I got the shaping the way I wanted it.
The pants I’ve made before is Simplicity 8655 view C a mimi g style pattern. I just tapered the leg at the knee on this one and reduced the flare at the hem to a slim bootleg cut and added a 1.5 inch self- drafted contour waistband instead of the facing. Overall, I like the fit of these pants but I could have left a bit more ease in the knee and calf. I am still working out how much ease to leave in a garment because I hate baggy clothes that lose their shape once you wear them so I tend to take it in a little too much.
The fabric was left over from my Junior Collection that I designed last spring for the annual student fashion show when I was in design school. The Top is a metallic gold, brocade with charcoal grey, black and mauve pink accents that I sourced from Moodfabrics.com. Its lined with a black matte satin that I recently purchased from Joann Fabrics and the pants were made from a stretch wool suiting that I also sourced from Moodfabrics.com last spring for the show.
I also have to give a shoutout to my hairdresser for this hairdo I’m wearing. You can find her on instagram @Liz_mke. She’s pretty dope with the braids but she does it all. Color, cuts, styling she great at as well. If your in Milwaukee you should check her out. Make-up was me and the shoes i’ve had for about 3 years now but seem to have an inifinite life cycle as they go with so many things in my summer wardrobe.
And the final blessing of this evening is that I designed this look under my clothing label Virtuous By Design. Its been awhile since i’ve created anything under this lable. So it felt extra special.
Well until the next time!