Operation Lady Tux, Part 3: Camisole and Trousers

Welcome to the 3rd and final part of my Totally Unnecessary Holiday Outfit-slash-Designin’ December series! If you’ve made it this far, you’re in for some more stupid mistakes and vague successes. Buckle up! 😉 (Part 1 is here; Part 2 is here.)

Let’s start with the camisole!

Making of: Camisole

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I want you people to know that it was 38F and raining when we took these–that’s how much I love you.

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Seriously, I adore the back view of this cami! So hot!!

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Having decided to make trousers and a jacket, my last consideration for this outfit concerned my tits and how I was going to cover them, LOL. Obviously I have to be careful here, because my event is a work party: I can’t be all Hollywood, showing up in a tux and 1. nothing or 2. a lace bralette, even if I wanted to–I have to look my fellow attendees in the eye the Monday after!* 😀 On the other hand, I didn’t want to be completely covered up; one of the many luxuries of being small-chested is being able to “get away” with wearing very low-cut tops and showing some cleavage ribs, and I wanted to counter the pants-and-jacket coverage of the rest of my outfit somehow.

Because of the strong impression left by the Gwyneth Paltrow inspo outfit, I decided that a lace camisole was a good middle ground. Having bought the Ogden pattern right when it came out, that was my go-to. I had my lace already–a beautiful black chantilly with double scallop borders and some metallic thread. I thought I may have to order lining, but NOPE! Stash to the rescue: I had this amazing peachy, almost-rose-gold colored J. Crew silk/cotton voile that was perfect under the black lace. Yay!

*Funny enough, the same colleague who made me feel like a million bucks in my outfit also suggested that I could have worn a lace bralette underneath the jacket. She kinda made me wish I’d done that, LOL!


This camisole was SO EFFING EASY to make! I want an army of them now. 😉 The hardest part was cutting everything out and underlining the pieces. That took me a couple of hours one weekend afternoon, but sewing everything together into a wearable garment took about the same amount of time on a different day. It was so fast!!

I used my silk/cotton voile as an underlining for the lace shell, and used it again for the half-lining that’s part of the pattern. I also made the straps out of it, though I made them my own way (the same way I made my Reeta drawstrings) so they were a little heftier. I lengthened the straps as well (versus the pattern), AND added length to the hemline. I regret the latter, as I didn’t realize how long it would end up! And since I used the scallop edge for the hem, it wasn’t like I could go back and shorten it. Womp womp.



This is a great little pattern for using small pieces of special fabric! I have leftovers from my 2016 dress that will definitely be made into an Ogden, and I can see myself making tons of them…maybe even a dress version, too!

So that’s the skinny on what I wore on my top half; next up, some kinda-busted trousers!

Making Of: Trousers

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Okay, the back view is pretty ace…

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Side, with fancy tux stripes!

I made my trousers from the exact same fabrics as my jacket: wool/nylon/lycra suiting with wool sateen accents, plus bemberg for the pocket linings. I think that suiting is definitely too bulky for these trousers, a fact which magnifies and is in turn magnified by the flaws in the trousers that are of my own making. :-/

For the pants, I decided on straight legs (wide are NOT my jam usually, and skinny probably won’t “age” well) with the all-important “tuxedo stripe” on the outseam, angled front slash pockets (as opposed to inseam or no pockets), full-length (not cropped), and no back pockets or front crease. I also didn’t do a fly front, which in retrospect was probably a mistake but oh well. What I should have done is pick a proper trouser pattern, but I went back to V9160 because I had loved the shape of the pants last year.



Sorry, it’s really dark!!

As I said, my mistake was probably trying to shoehorn V9160 into a tuxedo pant. :-/ At first, things were going okay: I got the front slash pockets how I wanted them, having drafted new pocket bags and all that. I also took the waist in a couple of inches (you’d think I’d measure that area carefully since I seem to do this every. single. time. I make bottoms…) which skewed my stripes to the back slightly at the waist, but it wasn’t super awful-looking. But I got cocky sloppy and free-handed the shape of the leg below the knee (I made my muslin about that length because #lazy and to use less muslin) instead of using my muslin for the ass/pockets and the pattern for the legs. Derp.

The resulting trousers–totally assembled except for the waistband and zipper–were too wide to be straight-leg, but too narrow to be wide-leg. THE WORST, amirite? At this point, Smart Abbey returned and got out the V9160 pieces and re-chalked the lines. But Lazy Abbey wasn’t through with me yet, and instead of unpicking my racing stripes (OMG THE TIME THAT WOULD TAKE) I adjusted the best I could using just the inseams. So you will notice the seams aren’t quite plumb from crotch to hem, if you catch my drift. 😉 Lazy Abbey partly justified this by pointing out the risks of re-doing the stripes, which were installed with a pleasantly consistent 3/4″ width all the way down the leg the first time around.




Back view

I didn’t put any pockets in the back, which was sort of a last-minute decision; I like the idea of welts in the back to break up all that real estate, but really didn’t want any added bulk on my ass (I worked HARD to get the fit right back there, guys), so ended up leaving them off. I do sort of regret not doing a fly front, just because I think the combination of the thick, spongy fabric AND slash pockets AND no zipper AND a looser fit in my upper front thighs makes them/me look wider in the hips in an unflattering way.

I drafted a waistband and facing (remember, these pants are part of a jumpsuit–no waistband), and used an invisible zip that goes all the way to the top. That was kind of dumb, because the waistband/pants seam juncture is really thick and zipping over it takes effort. :-/ (Shout out to the lycra content though, without which I might never have gotten into these at all. ❤ ) I also hate how wide the waistband ended up: I really should have thought about that more carefully! It’s too close to yoga pants territory for me! Speaking of dumb, I somehow added WAY too much length to the pants when I cut them out–I literally had 5″ to remove before I could hem them, LOLOL! WTF?!? No idea what I was thinking there, but better that than too short!

Shenanigans aside, seeing photos of the trousers after the party really made me feel better about them–it was hard to evaluate the shape of them without a full-length mirror, and I was SURE they were frumpy.

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You guys, THAT IS IT for my Holiday Outfit for 2017! Thank you for sticking with me: I hope you had some laughs at my expense and will learn from my (copious) mistakes. 😉 I will probably be back before New Year’s with Top 5 stuff, so I’ll see you soon. In the meantime, enjoy whatever holiday(s) you are celebrating this month! ❤




6 thoughts on “Operation Lady Tux, Part 3: Camisole and Trousers

  1. Pingback: Operation Lady Tux, Part 1: Big Reveal and Inspiration | Life in A "Mads" House

  2. Pingback: Operation Lady Tux, Part 2: Jacket | Life in A "Mads" House

  3. OMG I so feel all of your pain here, so firstly commiserations and congratulations for getting through this with a workable result. I know how much it sucks when all you can see are the flaws, but this looks fabulous on you, I have no doubt you smashed the work party and think how much you learned in the process!

  4. Okay, I am totally with lAzy Abbey here. Unpicking those trouser stripes would have put anyone off sewing for a long long time! I am also a big fan of Lycra…it has saved many a make for me, allowing for teeny tiny openings to expand as needed!! Your pants look awesome, and quite authentic, and no one at your party could even guess at your secret anguish!! You look fabulous and very Gwyneth.

  5. Pingback: 2017 Top 5, Part 1: Hits, Misses, and Highlights! | Life in A "Mads" House

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