Sultry or Sunshine?

26 Jul Sultry or Sunshine?

 “Well if it isn’t Sultry and Sunshine!” blurted the drunk man upon seeing my friend and me.

The year was 1984. My friend resembled Angelina Jolie and well, I just looked like myself, only 29 years younger. It’s not hard to know who was Sultry and who was Sunshine. I’m not sure what little Miss Sunshine was wearing that evening but I doubt it was yellow.

There is no yellow in my home and I did not own any yellow clothes until two years ago after a Medium told me I needed more yellow in my life. (Blogged HERE and HERE)

Now the color downright haunts me.

After completing the ruffled ivory top made from this glorious Ivory Goes with Everything silk twill from Mood Fabrics, I decided to confront this strange relationship I had with the color yellow.

IMG_1631 The success of The Regis Dress propelled me to buy a bottle of Rit Dye in every color offered including two shades of yellow; Lemon and Golden.

I dyed the remaining silk  with Golden Yellow which resulted in this color.

IMG_0457Then I ordered four more yards of the silk. Nearly three months later I have finally completed the ensemble I set out to make the first week in May.

IMG_0421I cut both colors of fabric into four-inch strips and pieced them together with ¼” seams, bringing back memories of my quilting days. After pressing the seams open, I pressed them towards the ivory strips and topstitched to prevent excessive raveling.


My pattern is the Katie Spade skirt pattern. Taking a cue from Julie Starr I moved the zipper to the side and then decided to omit the waistband.

IMG_0425To give this soft silk twill the durability needed for a straight skirt, I underlined the fabric with silk organza and then lined the skirt with a heavy woven fabric with stretch (fabric content unknown) from my stash.

I’m hoping to dress it down for more casual attire too.


The skirt was a successful experiment for me particularly in the area of dying for colorblocking and trim. How often I wish I had a contrast piece of trim! How often I want to sew colorblocked garments but can’t find the colors I need in the same fabric!

 I’m not sure what I’ll do with the remaining 3 ½ yards of my Ivory Goes with Everything silk but I doubt much of the fabric will remain ivory. Maybe I’ll venture into the sultry colors, but for now I’ll enjoy humoring the intuitive spirit of Marcy the Medium 🙂


Best wishes for a great weekend!

No Comments
  • Kathie Bennett
    Posted at 08:18h, 26 July Reply

    OMGosh….call asap Kathie Bennett Magic Time Literary Agency 864-706-1484

  • Kay
    Posted at 08:27h, 26 July Reply

    Both pieces are stunning! You done a wonderful job.

  • Jean
    Posted at 08:36h, 26 July Reply

    Wow, your ensemble is stunning. I love both the blouse and the skirt. How clever to dye the fabric. Do you have any trouble with the dye running later when washing your dyed garments?

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 10:44h, 26 July Reply

      Thank you for the comment! So far so good with the dyed fabric, but I’ll probably have this skirt dry cleaned.

  • Donna
    Posted at 08:39h, 26 July Reply

    How DO you stay so fit and trim?

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 10:46h, 26 July Reply

      Ha Ha Ha! It’s the constant struggle. I was very trim until 11 years ago. This summer I’ve taken off 9 of the extra 13 pounds following the Eat to Live plan. My husband makes me go to the gym 😉 – not really but everyday he asks me if I’ve been.

  • Vivian
    Posted at 08:41h, 26 July Reply

    Cute skirt. It has motivated me to learn more about dying fabric.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 10:46h, 26 July Reply

      Thank you, Vivian! I find dying fabric to be fun and almost magical!

  • Kristine
    Posted at 08:43h, 26 July Reply

    {Standing Ovation} WOW!!! So many things are awesome here… seeing it through to the end, dying a fabric, color-blocking, creating a look that is both fancy and casual. I’m in awe. Nice job!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 10:48h, 26 July Reply

      Thank you so much, Kristine! I wish I had an encore for you 😉
      While the whole process sounds so involved, it really wasn’t too bad – most likely because the pattern is so simple.

  • Amanda S.
    Posted at 08:54h, 26 July Reply

    OH! So pretty! I need this outfit!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 10:49h, 26 July Reply

      Thank you, Amanda! I know you are a yellow person and you would look fabulous in the outfit 🙂

  • Fran Giacobbe
    Posted at 09:00h, 26 July Reply

    So classic…with a twist!…as always! Quick question: is there a special reason you ironed the seam allowances of your pieced fabric toward the ivory strip rather than the darker yellow strip?
    Thanks for the inspiration!
    Fran G

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 10:50h, 26 July Reply

      Many thanks, Fran! The only reason I ironed the seam allowances toward the ivory strip is because I am lazy and did not want to change the thread to yellow 😉

  • Rosalia
    Posted at 09:12h, 26 July Reply

    Love the skirt and color combination, I may have to copy this! Thanks for the inspiration. Is this silk hand washable or dry clean? Love the versatility and option of being able to dye the fabric the color of your choice, the possibilities are endless! I don’t have a Katie Spade skirt pattern, is there a pattern that closely resembles this pattern? I love the fit and think I can make my own version.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 10:51h, 26 July Reply

      Thank you, Rosalia! I plan to dry clean the silk now, but I did wash it to pretreat it. McCall’s 3830 is a very similar pattern. Good luck!

  • Cindy
    Posted at 09:17h, 26 July Reply

    Heavens that is gorgeous! Whatever inspired you to colorblock the Katie Spade skirt, it’s sheer genius! I love that you’re having fun with each piece, making something unique and totally YOU. The wider stripes are unexpected and provide powerful visual interest, as does that stunning custom-dyed golden yellow. Outstanding!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 10:53h, 26 July Reply

      Thank you so much for this comment, Cindy! I thought about going with a narrower stripe but decided to break the fashion rule of wearing wide horizontal stripes and now am glad I did! 😉

      • Cindy
        Posted at 23:14h, 26 July Reply

        I think that was a great decision. The substantial width of the stripes keeps the eye going up and down, whereas a narrower alternating color stripe might keep the eye going side to side, making the wearer look heavier. You have such an awesome touch!

  • CarolinasCallin
    Posted at 09:27h, 26 July Reply

    You hit it out of the park with this one, girlfriend! I’m sitting here in awe – you STITCHED TOGETHER STRIPS OF FABRIC TO CREATE YOUR OWN FABRIC!!! O.M.G. AND you did it so incredibly well! It looks absolutely perfect. Seriously impressed. Your creations have always been so thoughtfully chosen and carefully sewn…but your last few have just broken new ground. You’re creating your own fabric here! First the ribbon skirt and now this wonderful stripe – AND you dyed the pieces! ACK. Really, you should be so very proud of yourself! You’re miles ahead of where you started – and you started at such a great place 🙂 Tim Gunn would be proud, because you are definitely “making it work”!!!

    Congrats on another beautifully done piece. You’re really an inspiration to us!!!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 10:55h, 26 July Reply

      Hi Cheryl!
      Thank you for taking the time to write such a thoughtful comment! I am pleased to still be sewing learning and creating…. one thing leads to another doesn’t it. I’ve learned a lot from Cousin Tim 😉 !

  • Jackie
    Posted at 09:35h, 26 July Reply

    Wow! What a stunning look. The ruffled top worn with the wide stripes of the skirt is wonderful. You have such a talent and you must be a size 2 to wear horizontal stripes. Beautiful outfit. I always look forward to your posts.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 10:57h, 26 July Reply

      Thank you so much, Jackie! I was a little worried about the horizontal stripes but decided to take a chance. I’d love to return to those size 2 days…… maybe I’ll get there if I behave myself for a few more weeks. 😉

  • Laury Shepherd
    Posted at 09:36h, 26 July Reply

    That is stunning on you!

  • Suzanne Parker
    Posted at 09:46h, 26 July Reply

    All your pieces are just stunning. I was hoping for a sewing filled summer off from work as a speech/language pathologist in the schools, but alas, I’ve been unable to piece out the time needed.. Also, trying to get a pattern to fit is always a road block and no matter how many books I read or videos I watch, I’m always afraid to try because I want to avoid the frustration associated with fitting a pattern properly. But, good for you and your great efforts.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 13:43h, 26 July Reply

      Thank you, Suzanne! I have quit sewing on numerous occasions because of the fitting frustrations I experienced while sewing. This time around I discovered sewing a proper muslin changed everything for the better and I’m finally learning to fit myself without the difficulty I once faced.
      Good luck and enjoy your summer off!

      • Suzanne Parker
        Posted at 15:55h, 26 July Reply

        Thanks for your vote of confidence.


  • Miriam
    Posted at 09:55h, 26 July Reply

    That is a beautiful outfit. Is it hard to dye fabric? Could you someday show us pictures of how you do it? I would like to try it do are afraid that I’ll end up staining the kitchen sink! Again, beautiful work as always!!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 13:45h, 26 July Reply

      Thank you Miriam. I’ve found dying fabric to be easier than I expected. I’m still a novice, but I’ll be glad to write a post about dying fabric if you’d like 🙂

      • Miriam
        Posted at 22:42h, 26 July Reply

        Oh yes, when you have some time please do a post on dyeing fabric!

  • Pam
    Posted at 10:01h, 26 July Reply

    That is really lovely and very flattering on you. I would never have thought to dye my own fabric but now you really have started the wheels turning- said she who stared at a closet full of white shirts this very morning! Once again- bravo and thank you for this inspiration!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 14:00h, 26 July Reply

      Thank you, Pam! I never expected to be doing my own dying but it sure is fun! Good luck transforming those white shirts – I may do some of that myself! 🙂

  • Lauren
    Posted at 10:16h, 26 July Reply

    Totally great! Love it! Will be lovely for summer weddings.

  • Art Attack
    Posted at 10:26h, 26 July Reply

    Neither sultry nor sunshine…just classy. If you are looking for a greater assortment of colors try some Jacquard fabric dyes. This is such a cool skirt!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 14:01h, 26 July Reply

      Ah, thank you, Dorcas! Thanks too for the tip on Jacquard fabric dyes. I must give them a try!

  • Bethwhitch
    Posted at 10:31h, 26 July Reply

    OMG! You have totally inspired me to get into dieing! This is fabulous! Absolutely love it- off I go to by my silk twill :0) thank you !

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 14:02h, 26 July Reply

      Thanks, Beth! I hope you’ll have fun dying your silk 🙂 !!

  • Connie
    Posted at 10:40h, 26 July Reply

    What is a median? Marcia the median?

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 14:41h, 26 July Reply

      As you might guess, I visit MEDIUMS so rarely I don’t even know the correct term. A median is the statistical term 🙂 definitely different than Marcia the MEDIUM 🙂

  • Rhonda
    Posted at 11:07h, 26 July Reply

    I just love it. Could you please briefly explain how you dyed the fabric? Did you use the stove or the sink and then wash normally in your washing machine? Thank you.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 14:11h, 26 July Reply

      Thank you, Rhonda! I did my dying in the kitchen sink which is Stainless steel. After rinsing the fabric until it ran clear of color I washed it in the washing machine in warm water. Now that the skirt is sewn I’ll be having it dry cleaned.

  • Linda B.
    Posted at 11:33h, 26 July Reply

    Wow!!! This post brought a ray of sunshine on a rainy day up here in MA! Just fabulous and gorgeous on you as always!!! I am about the same size as you but have always had that “no horizontal stripes around the hips” idea stuck in my brain! You have definitely made me think its time to throw that old notion out the window!!! Thank you so much for sharing this!!!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 14:15h, 26 July Reply

      Thanks, Linda! I threw caution to the wind on this one and am now glad I chose a wider stripe. I like it’s bold effect and encourage you to give it a try – good luck!

  • ewellons
    Posted at 11:40h, 26 July Reply

    Well, aren’t you the most clever sewist??!! By dyeing, you got exactly the fabric you wanted. The skirt is stunning with both tops. I’m getting myself some dye!!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 14:17h, 26 July Reply

      Thanks, Cissie! Little did I know I’d be dying fabric when I picked up sewing again, but boy is it fun! Can’t wait to see what you do with a little RIT!

  • Angela
    Posted at 12:12h, 26 July Reply

    Gorgeous — and fun! Your fearlessness and enthusiasm greatly encourage me (and lots of others) to keep on trying. Enjoy your skirt:)

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 14:19h, 26 July Reply

      Thank you for the nice comment, Angela! I loved this project and actually it was quite simple!

    Posted at 12:16h, 26 July Reply

    I LOVE yellow, and I’m so jealous it looks soo good on you! Dyeing the fabric and sewing those stripes was a genius idea. Beautiful outfit!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 14:21h, 26 July Reply

      Thank you, LLadybird!! I’ve seen you in yellow and you look fantastic!

  • Mary Lynn
    Posted at 12:18h, 26 July Reply

    Amen to ALL of the above comments! , You truly are amazing, clever, talented and visionary!
    If i tried dyeing something, everything but the fabric would have a new color (yellow dog?) and I would just be having hallucinations! Wow!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 14:22h, 26 July Reply

      LOL! Hubby was scared, really scared when the kitchen sink was filled with orange dye. I’ve learned an apron and rubber gloves are essential! Many thanks for writing 🙂

  • Shams
    Posted at 12:30h, 26 July Reply

    What a beautiful ensemble!!

  • fool4fabric
    Posted at 12:32h, 26 July Reply

    What a spectacular outfit! And you look fabulous in yellow…

  • lisa g
    Posted at 12:39h, 26 July Reply

    i absolutely gasped when i saw your skirt! fab as always! the width of the stripes is perfect, and that yellow is just beautiful. i have always avoided yellow clothing, though it’s super flattering on other people! maybe i should try it sometime… 🙂

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 14:27h, 26 July Reply

      Thank you, Lisa! I have avoided yellow all of my life, but I’m slowly adding it to my wardrobe. I think I’m liking it! 🙂

  • Vicki
    Posted at 13:49h, 26 July Reply

    Looks fabulous! Yellow does really suit you.

  • Almeda
    Posted at 14:24h, 26 July Reply

    This beautiful skirt is all “SUNSHINE”! Gorgeous!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 14:28h, 26 July Reply

      Ah…… but you’re right…… no sultry anywhere 🙂 Many thanks for writing!

  • Margo
    Posted at 16:36h, 26 July Reply

    Beautiful ensemble! I adore the skirt so much!

  • Katie
    Posted at 16:45h, 26 July Reply

    Looking good Sunshine!

  • Charry
    Posted at 18:24h, 26 July Reply

    WOW! you are amazingly creative! The investment on the skirt is truly paying off. This shade of yellow is beautiful on the silk. I am truly inspired.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 08:02h, 27 July Reply

      Many thanks, Charry! I really wasn’t expecting such a bright color, but now I just love it 🙂

  • Tia Dia
    Posted at 19:25h, 26 July Reply

    This is lovely! I’ve yet to try my hand at dying. I love your ruffled blouses – they suit you perfectly and look so chic.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 08:03h, 27 July Reply

      Many thanks, Tia Dia! You’re so creative I find it hard to believe you have not dyed fabric. Hope you get your house back in order soon 🙂

  • Sharon
    Posted at 20:02h, 26 July Reply

    Gorgeous outfit, love the skirt!

  • Bronwen
    Posted at 20:17h, 26 July Reply

    You make such gorgeous outfits – I am in awe!

  • Lori
    Posted at 23:33h, 26 July Reply

    Amazing job, what a beautiful skirt and an ingenious way to make it your own.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 08:05h, 27 July Reply

      Thank you, Lori – it was truly fun to put together 🙂

  • Velosewer
    Posted at 03:26h, 27 July Reply

    A-maz-ing. You look amazing.

  • Elise Lin
    Posted at 05:16h, 27 July Reply

    You’re looking gorgeous! I love the combination of ivory with yellow.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 08:06h, 27 July Reply

      Thank you Elise Lin – I’m loving this color combo too!

  • CherryPix
    Posted at 08:38h, 27 July Reply

    Another inspirational skirt and post…Congrats on your new sleekness!!! Mind you, I thought you looked pretty sleek already.. but I totally understand not being where you want to me…(says she, hovering on the edge of ‘doing something’ similar!) You are great at sewing sleekness-enhancing outfits… and this skirt is no exception!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 16:42h, 27 July Reply

      Many thank, Anne for the nice comment! I wouldn’t exactly call myself sleek yet but I have tossed the Spanx 🙂 I love sewing sleekness-enhancing outfits after years of buying clothes that didn’t enhance too much of anything!

  • Sheila
    Posted at 12:10h, 27 July Reply

    Beautiful outfit, love your idea of dyeing to create the color block skirt.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 16:43h, 27 July Reply

      Thank you so much, Sheila! As I said I rarely find the same fabric in a variety of colors, so perhaps now I can get what I want 🙂

  • jillybe
    Posted at 19:13h, 27 July Reply

    Wowza. Yet another stunning outfit! You wear your clothes SO well!!!!

  • Joan
    Posted at 21:14h, 27 July Reply

    Beautiful job on the skirt construction and the wide bands of contrasting color are so flattering! Great look with the ruffled blouse!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:41h, 28 July Reply

      Many thanks, Joan! I questioned the width of the bands but am glad I didn’t go narrower. 🙂 🙂

  • ZoSews
    Posted at 04:19h, 28 July Reply

    Beautiful! Especially with that ruffled top 🙂

  • Fran Giacobbe
    Posted at 08:25h, 28 July Reply

    After all these well deserved comments, you do realize that a tutorial on dyeing fabric is called for, yes?? Honestly, the next time you venture into dyeing fabric, perhaps you could write a follow- along-with-Sarah tutorial on the process. I would love to give it a try. I,too, having been inspired by Sharon and you, have embarked on the Eat To Live philosophy. Although not quite ready to dispense with my spanx while wearing a pencil skirt, I have lost several stubborn pounds!

    • Bethwhitch
      Posted at 09:54h, 28 July Reply

      Yes!!!! Ppppppppretty ppppllllleeeaaase! (As my 4 yr old would say) :0)

      • goodbyevalentino
        Posted at 17:50h, 28 July Reply

        OK- I promise! …… and Fran, a big congratulations on the weight loss!

  • gingermakes
    Posted at 15:45h, 28 July Reply

    What the WHAT?!?!?! You dyed and pieced this skirt– my mind is blown! Holy cow, it’s too perfect! This opens up so many possibilities! You’re a mad genius, you!

  • Opal
    Posted at 21:42h, 28 July Reply

    I am such of fan of anything yellow. That skirt is gorgeous.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:12h, 31 July Reply

      Thank you, Opal! I’m starting to become a fan as well!

  • Julie Starr
    Posted at 22:40h, 29 July Reply

    Just back from the mountains and was having withdrawals with no wifi! Great story and GORGEOUS skirt. I agree that the width of the stripes gives this such a modern, fun punch. There are just no bounds to your creativity and wow are you looking fabulous in this.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:13h, 31 July Reply

      Ah……. thank you so much, Julie! Hope you had a great trip – getting away from wifi would be super challenging but very refreshing 😉 Welcome home!

  • keren kabbes
    Posted at 10:18h, 30 July Reply

    I love the clothes you make! You are an inspiration for me. May I ask what the pattern is for the ruffled silk top?

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:17h, 31 July Reply

      Thank you, Keren! I used Simplicity 2497, a Cynthia Rowley dress pattern which I modified to a top. It’s a really fun pattern 🙂

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