dark chocolate suedette

I’ve made a new little top.  And I’m so happy with it in my outfit! far more than I thought I would be  🙂  Making the little top was almost a spur of the moment thing… see, I’m going out tonight and a few days ago suddenly started to think seriously; what smart/casual outfit with shoes would fit my Year of Handmade?  I’ve got tonnes of lovely dresses but didn’t think any of my current handmade shoes would cut the smart/casual mustard with any of them… aaah first world problems!  anyway long story short; bit of brainstorming later and dreamt up this outfit.  Had the skirt and the shoes already and just needed the top to pull it all together and be the icing on the cake… or should that be the chocolate topping on the cream?  Probably.



The neutral colours with a variety of textures in my outfit are very pleasing to me: the suede-y deep chocolate brown vs. smooth glossy creamy-ivory satin skirt, vs softy fluffy chocolate and ivory felt in my shoes.  And smooth pine for the base of my shoes.  I feel rather modern and new-age cool.   Almost trendy.  LOL!  Yeah, funny thing; it’s been a long while since I’ve felt this sharp in my handmade clothing!!.

The fabric in my top is faux suede, from the Fabric Store in Melbourne, bought during a trip there with Mum and Cassie.  I have loads left too… not a bad thing since it’s kinda gorgeous!


Pattern; Crop Top 127, from Burda magazine 2/2015.  It’s quite a cute little design, boxy with lots of straight choppy lines long and dramatic diagonal darts at the front and boxy angular sleeve seams.  And then the smooth curve of a high-low hemline to break it up.  The bias-finished armholes and neckline are clean and neat.  I do like a bias finished edge!  I used black cotton for this since I didn’t have any chocolate brown.  The top as per the magazine is completely open at the back! instead I chose to seam mine, leaving a slit with a little button and loop closure at the top.  I covered my embroidery cotton loop with tightly spaced blanket stitching along its length, so it’s strong and neatly finished.


Adjustments; the pattern is in petite sizes, and in the past I’ve found that the Burda petite bustline sits just a little high on me … I lowered mine very slightly just by making the dart shorter.  I also added 6cm in length to the bottom hem all round, because it looked like it was going to be a tad on the too short side.  And I’m so glad I did!!!  It would have been waaaaaaaaaay too short on me!   Even at this lengthened version, I feel in constant danger of exposing the underthings.  Have to be careful not to lift my arm up too high!  I’m wearing my mocha Sierra bra though, which I  think is a good fit for this expose-errific top… why? because it’s brown, and quite a longline bra and also since I made it very very plain it actually reads more like a cropped camisole than a bra, if anyone happened to glimpse it.  So I’m glad I’ve got that already too.  Honestly, everything in the outfit matches just like they were all made intentionally to go together.  I feel very harmonious  🙂

Smart casual outfit? that pleases me? fully handmade? Tick, tick, and tick!


Top; Burda magazine 2/2015; 127, chocolate brown suedette
Skirt; Burda magazine 02/2014; 106; cream satin, details here
Shoes; handmade by me in wool felt and pinewood, details here


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32 Thoughts on “dark chocolate suedette

  1. So chic! Love the high low combination! I saw a suedette Cardigan in a shop that was so cool, raw edges, sort of waterfall I think. Now I’m searching for suedette!

  2. Trendy and cool indeed. What a great top pattern, fab use of the faux suede.

  3. Nele on 04/03/2016 at 7:34 pm said:

    Hej Carolyn,
    whenever I pick up the new issue of German Burda I wonder if you know that you are featured in it literally in every other issue with something you made from them?
    Greetings from Germany,

  4. I had missed those shoes the first time around – wow! The outfit is indeed sharp. I love the neutrals together.

  5. liochka on 04/03/2016 at 7:44 pm said:

    I made it too! It si beautiful .your one is so nice

  6. Your outfit is gorgeous! I love the cropped little blouse with the high low hem that just suits the yoke’s seamline. The colours are very pretty, very chic! 🙂

  7. Susan on 04/03/2016 at 9:20 pm said:

    Love it! Can you show how you did your button loop? Did you use embroidery thread and stitched over it using a blanket stitch? Can you explain further? I’ve been looking for a new way to do these!

  8. The colours go very well together. Lovey outfit!

  9. This outfit looks so cute and fashionable on you – love it with your shoes 🙂 What I’m uber impressed with however is your bias finish and slotted back closing. I DREAM of doing such a perfect job – I’m keeping yours in my favourites for inspiration honestly!

  10. I love that top – so cute. The whole outfit sings! So you!

  11. Your outfit is styled beautifully. Loving it!

  12. I remember admiring this pattern when it came out, but don’t think I bought that issue. It looks super made up in your chocolate suedette!

  13. Tres chic!! I love the colour combo and the fact that you are wearing THOSE shoes!!

  14. Your top and skirt look like they were planned to go together! Not to mention your awesome shoes!!! I really like this top in this fabric. It doesn’t seem too stiff and has a gentle shape with movement. Beautiful! 🙂

  15. This outfit must be the definition of smart casual! love the design of the sleeve … and a great ninja insertion

  16. Great outfit. Your color palate is my palate too. I’m a bit envious of your top. I saw the pattern in the Burda magazine – instant love – your version has inspired me to make it.

  17. This top and skirt are a great combination. I must make a high/low top!

  18. Funny thing. I was thinking recently that I wish I could lay my hands on suedette. I’m just not sure where in South Africa I’ll find it… definitely not in our remote little town! Ah well, there is always an upcoming trip to the city to look forward to. Your outfit looks amazing..

  19. Gorgeous outfit and I love the top. The colors are so beautiful together!! Now I have to go and read about that skirt…

  20. Truly chic outfit Carolyn! I’m not a fan of the high/low but I love this look on you…beautiful!

  21. sankati on 06/03/2016 at 5:26 am said:

    Another bullseye! Astonishing, how well the angle of the high-low hem matches the angle of the skirt yoke. It succeeds the way Jennifer Lawrence’s red Dior Golden Globes dress did, just in a more wearable way.

    Which makes me wonder, what if you had time to make another top, but sleeveless, in a matching wool crepe top? Could even be silk, hand painted by you? Or custom dyed?

    Or, for daytime, what about remaking the short-sleeved version in an off-white print fabric…say, an ecru field with inky brown or pewter figures printed on it? Something graphic and edgy, like a ikat-ey polka dots, or a stripe, or Japanese calligraphy? Then trim the neckline and sleeve hems in the dark suede you’ve got. Nothing like a bit of dark edging to give pale colors verve. The overall effect of a mostly head-to-toe pale neutral would still create a tall, elongated impression.

    Same one-of-a-kind shoes would work. A black cuff bracelet, a pair of tortoise shell drop earrings, ta-dah.

    What fun to picture new projects for a talented sewist/dyer/artist with the knockout looks to show them to advantage!

    • Carolyn on 06/03/2016 at 12:14 pm said:

      Wow, thanks so much for those awesome suggestions Sankati! I really love the way you’re thinking. It would be fantastic in an edgy, artistic print, the sky’s the limit… I do particularly love the idea of it in a floaty silk, something hand painted would be too too divine… hmmm you’ve inspired me further… thank you!! xx 🙂

      • sankati on 09/03/2016 at 5:50 am said:

        Can’t wait to see what you make! It might be this or something completely different. The important part is the great feeling when ideas start bubbling up. Those days are such fun.

  22. Your brown suede top is perfect with your skirt and shoes. I appreciate the note about the length as this is a top I have pinned to make at some point.

  23. I do love everything about this outfit. I’m abstaining from this top after my initial inquiries about the pattern. I adore it, but realise after making a slightly cropped top last year and literally never wearing it that a crop top does not work in my wardrobe. I’m too fond of a hipster height waistline. You look fabulous and should feel completely put together – you are!

  24. Such a cute top & it totally makes the outfit. Perfect with your shoes.

  25. Thank you for showing us this beautiful combination!!!
    This top goes super with skirts. Which is not easy, I find. So beautiful and nicely done. … ans the shoes are the hammer!
    lots of love, Birgit
    PS: in Germany the burdastyle cover looks different, I am pleased to have this issue.

  26. Really cute – and I love the shoes!!

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