Last weekend was the time for the Sinsational Spring Awakenings burlesque event in Helsinki. I had been looking forward to the event eagerly and was thrilled when my burlesque dance teacher Bettie Blackheart asked me to work there as a pick-up (pick-ups, as the name suggests, pick up the costumes and props left on stage by the performers). However, knowing I would now be on stage myself too, even if just as a pick-up, created a problem: what the hell will I wear?
We started a conversation thread with the other pick-ups on Facebook and came up with a dress code for the three or us. The common nominator would be the colour yellow and the outfit would be play suit -like (with high-waisted shorts and a short top). Despite there being only a week to the event my first thought was “I’ll sew something”!
So I started drafting a pattern for a play suit based on my basic bodice and trouser block. I had been coveting lovely vintage play suits on Pinterest all year, so it didn’t take much time to come up with a design and start drafting. Everything was hurried – drafting, cutting and sewing. This isn’t something I’d proudly present my teacher, but I’m still proud I finished the play suit in time.
I first planned on making a one piece play suit. This didn’t turn out a great idea to do in haste: when I first tried to pull the suit on I realized there was way too little length from bust to crotch. To give you an unappealing mental image: the effect was beyond camel toe. Next time I’ll measure the bodice length better and drop the crotch-line as well. Luckily I found two zippers from my grandmother’s stash and could make the play suit as a top and shorts.
From that point the construction was fairly simple. The only thing that ended up bugging me was that my fabric, a lovely seersucker gingham cotton, was slightly see-through so the seam allowances show through when it’s worn. It’s in no way something most people would notice, but if I had to do something differently I might underline the top with the white cotton I used for the straps and cuffs. Although, the burlesque event ended up being super steamy (both figuratively and literally speaking), so any more fabric on my skin would have positively melted me! The event was super fun and worthy of its own post, so I’ll now leave you with some photos of the finished play suit my sister took before the event. She also made the pretty dandelion garland.