Thursday, 23 April 2020

quarantine projects: the most ridiculous leopard print lounge set

Hello and welcome to... whatever this is.

Did I make a matching leopard print loungewear set? I sure did. Do I look ridiculous? Clearly. Do I giggle at the sight of myself every time I pass a mirror? Of course! Do I love it to death regardless? Hell yeah. 

I bought this sweater knit from Abakhan last Christmas. I'm always drawn to leopard print and almost always back away because I struggle to style it in a way I'm happy with. I would have backed away from this too were it not for three factors: it's very soft, there was a huge length of it (rare to find 3.5 continuous metres in the Abakhan bins) and we were on our way back from a funeral so comfort was needed. Once I got it home I had no idea what to do with it - I always feel like 3+ metres of jersey should become a maxi dress, but that would have been deeply ill-advised with this print. It's a little faded, and the black has flecks of white in it, so when it came down to it, loungewear was the only option. 

(This is not very elegant, but it was the only way I could reasonably show you the back and the shape of the top while still remaining in frame and not removing all the furniture from our living room. For a one-bed in London we've got a decent amount of space here, but you still slam into limitations very quickly the minute you try to do anything that requires distance.)

I went with the lowest difficulty setting and used hacks I've tried successfully before: the Closet Case Patterns Sallie jumpsuit made up as trousers, and a mash-up of Jalie and Burda hoodie patterns (Jalie body cropped by several inches with altered neckline, Burda men's hood, no ribbing at cuffs or waist and no kangaroo pocket). It was a bit of a squeeze to get both out of the fabric I had, and in fact the waistband of the trousers is just the extra length I cut off the bottom of the hoodie when I tried it on and realised the weight and drape of the fabric was making it hang lower than I wanted. There's also a slightly awkward white selvedge stripe running down the side of one leg. The selvedge was about two inches wide, and that was two inches I needed, dammit. 

The Sallie trousers are my number one TNT pyjama pattern. I've always preferred jersey pyjamas to cotton ones, mostly because of my thigh spread, and since these are intended to be the bottom part of a jumpsuit they're super high waisted (which I also prefer). They have large, well-constructed pockets, I don't have to mess with the length, and all I have to do is cut an extra strip of fabric and run a piece of elastic through it as a waistband. I've done this four times now and I love them all. 

I know how ridiculous I look in this. I wasn't prepared for quite how daft some of the photos look. This one gets me particularly: a slightly awkward position and the onesie effect make me look half my height and twice my width, like a photoshopped toddler, but also somehow the afternoon light was amazing so it gives the illusion of this glowing porcelain skin which I can assure you I did not actually have. It's so bizarre. 

I've been wearing this at home all the time. Because the top is a hoodie I don't want to actually sleep in it, which puts it one step (or half-step) above actual pyjamas, so even though I clearly don't intend to leave the house it doesn't feel like I've already given up on the day. Also I find it very amusing to answer the door in this. 

Also in these photos you can see my scraps pouf, a free pattern from Closet Case Patterns. I really like the idea of this and was hoping to make a second (I have enough scraps for it), but London living strikes again and there isn't really room for it in our squished little living room. We're going to keep it here for now and work around it, in the hope that when we move we'll have a bit more space for things like this. It's nice to have my several bags of scraps in here rather than in a pile in the corner, at least. 

It's been another uninspired week in Casa Slapdash, so I'm not sure what will be up next. I have a bunch of things cut out and since most of them are fairly uncomplicated I'm hopeful that I'll be able to get one of them sewn up over the next couple of days. I've also ordered myself another couple of pieces of fabric, and when that arrives I'm going to have a Maxidresspalooza. Whatever it is, I guarantee it'll look more sensible than this.

How is everybody doing? Week six seems to be rough for most of the people I know - we've now reached an undefined middle where nobody can really remember pre-lockdown and it's way too soon to start thinking about post-lockdown. I've downloaded a mood tracker app which is showing me swinging about wildly from day to day, getting shit done and totally on top of my emotions one day and going ARGH and spending three hours asleep on the sofa the next. It's exhausting. We've taken the week off Zoom calls and other such because so many of our friends just want to talk about Covid and we just... can't. Anyone have any fun facts? I could really go for some fun facts right about now. 


  1. This is GLORIOUS! I love it. You look equal parts sultry, regal, and comfy in it!
    Fun fact: "Two-thirds of an octopus’ neurons reside in its arms, not its head." Which is pretty much how I feel these days, even granting that I'm still as clumsy as I ever was...

    1. Thank you! And thanks for the fun fact I didn't know!

    2. You not only look sultry and regal, you could be the next Phryne Fisher Mystery gal!

  2. This is wonderful. You look great.
    Did you see Patterns for Pirates released a sports bra today? I’ve only made their free leggings before. I might buy the bra and try it out. I’m not affiliated with them.

    1. Thank you! I don't really know Patterns for Pirates, but I'll investigate!

  3. I loved this post - so much fun! I have the moniker SlapHappy Sewing on YouTube so I'm sure we are kindred spirits! BTW very keen to make the pouf too :)

  4. You look amazing! I am a fan of any type of animal print myself...