I bought this fabric at the op-shop for a $1 and may have squeaked for joy when I spotted it, and I am so thrilled with it that I wanted to share it with you all. I am not sure of the exact composition, but it has zero plastic in it, with a burn test reducing the fabric to ash, so it is some sort of natural fibre with a soft hand and nice draping qualities.
I only had the smallest amount of fabric so fiddled around with a variety of patterns, finally settling on my latest favourite pattern the Lotta Jansdotter Esme tunic (previously made here as dresses).
As with the dresses I added pockets, but because of the length of the tunic raised them a little bit. With some careless posing you can actually see the bottom of one of the pockets showing below the hem, but this doesn’t happen normally, as you can see in the photo below.
The fabric has got a beautiful print on it, but I had to cut the pattern on the crosswise grain in order to give it the correct orientation. I fiddled and fussed to ensure that the focal point of the pattern was in the centre both front and back and took everything else from there. From a distance the print looks a bit random, but up close it has this rather elegant woman, dressed to the nines (that dress! those sleeves!) showing a tiny bird to her greyhound. They are standing in some sort of arbour and leaves are scattered around on the black parts of the fabric. I absolutely adore this fabric.
I managed to get her in the centre of the back as well, but I had to cut the sleeves on grain, which means that I couldn’t get that cream stripe to run down the sleeve which had been my original intention.
To recap: The fabric is some sort of natural fibre which I found in an op shop, the pattern is the Esme tunic from Lotta Jansdotter, the trousers are self drafted and made from bengaline from Knitwit and the shoes are A. Bottega.
52 thoughts on “Whimsical Esme tunic”
Totally wonderful fabric. Your delight is well founded.
Thank you, I still get a thrill when I see it!
What an absolutely divine print! It’s just gorgeous and you’ve made the most of it. Squeaking for joy well-founded!
Oooo!! This is just lovely. How lucky to score such exquisite fabric. 🙂
I know, it doesn’t happen often 🙂
That is the coolest thing I have seen in ages! That fabric is amazing! Truly unique!
Thank you Roxane, I couldn’t believe it when I saw that fabric!
I first thought it was a random graphic print but the close-up view shows how splendid it is! You picked the right style to showcase it. Best top I’ve seen in a while💖
Aw, thank you lovely Hélène, I did think about bringing it to Canada with me.
Please do so, but beware, I might steal it from you!
The simple esthetic of the esme tunic highlights this print perfectly. You look terrific.
That is gorgeous – love your “playing” with the fabric to show off that fun design. Looks elegant, yet comfortable!
Stunning. It looks like you’re wearing an Aubrey Beardsley print!
I had forgotten about Aubrey, but you’re so right. Er, wasn’t he into erotic pictures? Never mind, it is exactly the sort of thing he might have drawn.
He was into erotic art, but luckily a lot of his work remains “safe for work.” Like the famous “Isolde”. “Judith,” though, is not for the faint of heart 😉
Thank you for the clarification. His work is beautiful though and I would like some printed on fabric!
Amazing find – i love the very smart lady
Thank you Norma, she’s pretty spiffy!
Such a score! It’s your reward for giving away all those things! Beautifully made into this top.
Oh, that’s such a nice way to look at it. I need to give more stuff away if this is my reward!
One gorgeous tunic. What a lucky find but you had the eye to see it and its potential.
I think it was actually the colour that attracted me and then I saw the dress and was completely won over.
Absolutely fabulous fabric. What a treasure. And, your placement of the design is spot on. Congrats for a gorgeous tunic.
Thank you Claire!
Lucky you – that is a fabulous print worked into a great garment!
Thanks Kim, the Esme is such a useful pattern.
Exquisite! The pattern placement couldn’t have been better, what a lovely top.
Thanks Jenny, I did some nervous checking before I took the scissors to this fabric!
That is lovely fabric and you have done a fantastic job with the pattern placement!
Thank you Andrea 🙂
Simply beautiful top. The print looks to me as if it is straight out of an old book of fairytales. I have seen similar pictures in an old book of mine. Such a fortunate find.
I agree, it’s totally like a fairy tale illustration.
Glorious fabric; Beautiful outfit. Love it all!
Thanks Rachel, I am so happy with this one.
What a lucky find, lovely lovely fabric, looks unique and very flattering. I like to have a fossick in our local op shops too from time to time. Recently I was in one of the larger spruced up shops with my daughter and found a huge quantity of patterns, some vintage, some good, some so so, which I have not come across before, and would like to have gone through the lot there and then. However, we had to leave for something or other, and I looked forward to returning soon. So a week or so ago, I returned to find the shelves had moved, and when I did find the pattern section in a small cardboard box, there were only 5 there (and they were duds). Seems I was beaten to it. Next time, I shall seize the moment!
Oh yes, never, ever walk away in an op shop! What a shame, but there is always a next time.
It only takes $1of fabric to make a $100 top.
What a great saying! Thank you Sonja.
Now, that is very nice Fadanista, another one of your ‘make-a-miracle’ pieces! Thanks for invite, will be in touch. Busy, busy trying to sew!
Thanks Thel, we’ll catch up soon!
Beautiful and unique top. What a lucky fabric find. You have picked the perfect pattern to showcase this gorgeous fabric.
What a stunner this top is. Was there any information on the selvedge regarding the manufacturer?
No, there was nothing, which is such a shame.
What a stunner. Is there any information on the selvedge regarding the manufacturer?
No, sadly, I would love to know who produced it and shall be scouring the world for more!
Absolutely awesome texture. Your joy is all around established…
Stunning what a wonderful find and you have used the piece with a lot of thought and it is just gorgeous.
Thank you Sharon, I absolutely love it!
Its a beautiful pattern on the fabric and you’ve made it into something even more stunning! very talented 🙂
If you’re interested in Charity shopping, I’ve just written a review on Octavia Foundation, Tooting. Have a read and spread the word on the good work that they do: tootinghustle.wordpress.com
Happy blogging x
Thank you. I haven’t been to Tooting in decades, next time I get to the UK I shall have to visit.
Such a gorgeous print and you used the fabric well! I like this Esme version on you!!
Thank you Lisa, this has to be one of my all time favourite makes.