Thursday, September 19, 2013

A Win and a Fail

You know that old adage, "Do you want the good news or the bad news first?" I always go with the bad news first because if someone is asking that question, the good news is never really good least in my experience. So this post is about the final two Chado Ralph Rucci pieces...and I'm going to start with the "Fail" of the title first or the bad news...

First though let's recap ~
I purchased three panels of the Chado Ralph Rucci Wool Doubleknit fabric from Moods NYC store after seeing it on Moods' Instagram feed. Initially I had no idea what I would make with it.  After deciding upon the dress, I still had quite a bit of yardage left.  So I thought a jacket and skirt combo would allow me to play with the purple stripe that's a main feature of this fabric.  My last post was about the dress so this one is all about the suit.

The Fail...

I chose a jacket pattern that I'd used before - Vogue 8209 which is out of print - because the lines worked well with the fabric.  All of the construction details for the jacket are in this post.  This jacket is unlined without any closures. The fabric doesn't really need a lining and that works well with my pattern choice.

Just like the dress, pattern placement was the key to using the fabric effectively. For the jacket I ran the purple stripes down the front and then used the leftover pieces of fabric to cut the sleeves. I thought it would add some interest to the jacket.

However, after taking these photos, I realized that I would NEVAH EVAH wear these two pieces together, they really are "too artsy" for my workplace.  But I did realize that I could separate the pieces and wear them with other garments from my wardrobe.

The jacket pictured with a black ponte dress from my closet...

The Win...
I went with my TNT straight skirt pattern for the second piece.  This allowed me to come up with a suit, a suit that I now know I'm not going to wear. However, this piece will work with a black twinset that is presently in my closet and this is how I would wear it...

Honestly after allowing the jacket and skirt to sit, I will be removing the sleeves from the jacket.  Even though I got the sleeves out of the remaining scraps of fabric, and it seemed like a good idea at the time, I now know it's not.  One of my thoughts is to add some of the black pleather in the collection to the's a thought...but if I do the jacket will forever be relocated to a weekend I'll see.

I love the skirt and will wear it with a black twinset because this look works for me and my lifestyle.  I also have a purple twinset that will go with this skirt so with some tights and my black wedge booties it will be a great Friday look.  

Either way the jacket needs to be revamped, so that it can become a viable member of my wardrobe or dissembled to see if there is another option for it.

In conclusion...
The dress and the skirt were the best items made from the Chado Ralph Rucci wool doubleknit fabric.  The jacket is still up in the air. But I thought it was important to document my failures as well as my successes...because even though I have good intentions, not everything works! Sometimes the fabric/pattern combo trips you up...sometimes the fabric/fit combo doesn't work...I'm sure you know what I mean! *smile*

Anyway, I'm onto my next project so stay tuned... always more later!


  1. You are right as usual. They look great apart. Do you wear short sleeved jackets? I think that jacket would look great as a short sleeve jacket?

  2. Pleather sleeves! Yes! The skirt is beautiful.

  3. I think the pieces are beautiful, together or apart! I know you've said you work in a conservative workplace, but I'm having a hard time imagining a place where that suit, worn together, would be not conservative enough. It's a really beautiful shade of purple, and I think the minimalistic lines make the suit very modern.

  4. That's not so bad though, I agree, I like the pieces better apart. And I do think that the jacket would be nice with pleather sleeves!

  5. I love the vertical-horizontal play of the purple stripes! But they work best worn together. One of them, either jacket or skirt, is fine, but not nearly as striking as the combo.

    On the other hand, I feel the purple sleeves are a bit over the top. Too much distraction for my taste. As a replacement I would prefer the black ponte. The pleather is adorable, but again, too much distraction ...

  6. Even though you don't like them together, you still got a lot of new outfits out of them. I'm like BeaJay -- a short sleeve jacket could maybe work. And thanks for being real. The ideas in my head don't always translate to the material world the way I think they will. It's good to know that even happens to pros like you:)

  7. I like them both, but I do like them separated. The jacket is great, but so distinctive it will be hard to wear often, I think? What if you wear it a time or two, then cut off the lower part of the sleeves and go with the black shorter sleeve? Right now, you have the vertical line of the front of the jacket, and the horizontal line of the sleeve color change. In going with shorter all black sleeve, you wouldn't have the conflicting lines. If that makes sense.... K

  8. I don't know??hummmm. The two pieces look good to me. I do think the jacket would look better either as a short sleeve jacket as someone else suggested or totally black long sleeve. But hey! I see nothing "failed" about the complete outfit. Love it.

  9. I see what you mean.

    Must admit I didn't note if you still had enough of the black
    fabric to change out the purple
    and replace with the black on
    the sleeves.

    If so, how about considering
    removing the purple and sewing
    a tiny purple fabric stripe to
    separate the colors .. almost
    like thin-ish piping ..and
    seeing if that takes it to a
    more conservative look while
    still retaining that color
    blocking theme?

    Still love the concept and especially the dress.


  10. They are all pretty, but probably better as separates. Reminds me of the plum denim skirt and jacket I made. When I wore them together for the first and last time, I looked like a darn grape LOL Beautiful as separates, but not such a good look together :)

  11. I agree that they look better apart...for me it's something about how the lines sit together throwing the proportions off a bit.
    That said, I have to throw in a vote for plether sleeves. Too sassy!

  12. I think you've made yourself some lovely garment pieces that work well together and separate. That should definitly be a win win ;)

  13. I was going to post to suggest short sleeves, as well..

  14. I love your win-fails, your win-wins, and any fail-fails (I don't remember any) that you may have. Great post which shows the rethinking of a garment. There's some good feedback here and I'll not impose my thoughts, you are your own best "dresser". You knock it out of the park, lady!

  15. Like other posters I think the purple section of the sleeves is distracting and replacing them with a matt black fabric would make a huge difference. A thin strip or piping of purple between the sections might work. Shams did a version of this on her recent challenge jacket. And thanks for being so open about this "fail". This makes us feel better about our fails.


  16. You know, I really like the pieces together as a suit. Maybe because my favorite color is purple??
    I think they look amazing together, but I understand how you might think they are too 'Garanamals'.
    Maybe keep it as a suit for church or special occasions???
    But that's just me....:)
    I don't know if I'm feeling the pleather sleeves.
    Can you see yourself wearing it as a short sleeve jacket? I think that would work!!
    Again, just my little opinion. You are the Master seamstress!!

  17. I like both pieces but feel you need to have black sleeves on the jacket. Not pleather though as it would be too distracting.

    You did a great job on both pieces and they fit you beautifully.

  18. They look nice separately but I think they look great together. It looks fun and intentional. I'd totally wear them together.

  19. I think the jacket would work with a black long sleeve. There is just too much going on in the whole look that a person doesn't know where to look first. I like the purple down the front of the jacket, but not the purple sleeves and not the purple on the bottom of the skirt either. What about a black dress with a purple piping to relate to the jacket. I think pleather would be too much as well.

  20. I think I would cut the purple off the sleeves leaving me a short-sleeve jacket. Then it might not be as much "purple" if you paired it with the skirt again.

  21. You can see the sleeves are all wrong in the photos can't you? In theory you would think they would work. Perhaps the proportions? Or just the purple being too distracting. Not sure. Love your idea with swapping them out for pleather. Overall you have made great use of this fabric. I think you have done a fabulous job. And the jacket is very salvageable.

  22. Just reading the other comments.....and I also like the idea of short sleeves. Its a nice look to wear long sleeve top under the short sleeve jacket. In black of course :)

  23. Would the sleeves work if you cut them off at the elbow, with just a hint of a purple stripe? I'm seeing a lot of elbow-length sleeves this year, and think from your photos it would work. Just a thought.

  24. Short sleeve jacket, maybe with purple trim, maybe not. Depends on the proportions. (Wear the refashioned jacket and skirt with a simple black shell. Or wear the refashioned jacket with a sleeveless black dress with purple trim.) Definitely not pleather sleeves. IMHO.

  25. Thanks for sharing the fail and success. I think you are right in using them separately. For the jacket I did not like the purple part of the sleeves. I of course am not the wearer; it just did not seem right. Been there and done this on a few things as we all have.

    Looking forward to the next project.

  26. I'm sorry you considered those pieces together as a fail. I LOVE them together...

  27. I happen to like the two pieces together, but then, I'm not in your workplace. Perhaps you could wear them together someplace else - maybe an evening on the town or some special occasion. Give it a little time to marinate before giving up on the idea altogether.


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