City Gym shorts and African fabric

IMG_7994Riding the same wave of inspiration I caught off of Crafting a Rainbow’s #SewingDare, I decided to make something else. PurlSoho’s free City Gym shorts pattern has been featured before on various blogs and Pinterest pages, but I never had too great of an interest in it. Now, with the disgusting Charleston summer blazing and nearly all clothing prohibitively heavy, a lightweight pair of shorts is just the thing. Plus, the pattern is incredibly simple and bias tape is surprisingly easy to make and apply. So I made some!

IMG_7988It’s not quite in keeping with Gillian’s dare, since this fabric came home from Ghana with me back in 2009 (and has been sitting in a box ever since- how sad!), but I do love these colors and I’m so happy to have featured it in a garment I’ll wear all summer. Rather than pairing two colors for the front and back pieces, as the pattern directs, I decided to go all in with the fiery orange and red fabric, both because I didn’t have enough of the black and because the geometric print is just too gorgeous and dynamic not to showcase.

IMG_7995When I was in Ghana, I bought a few pieces of fabric and a good selection of beads. I had two dresses made, one out of this same orange and red fabric, which I still wear in the wintertime (since it’s lined and cut on the bias, so as it’s been washed and worn over the years its slowly become the wrong shape for an actual human to wear, but since I’ve lost some weight it works okay with a cardigan and some leggings), and one that fell apart pretty quickly after I got back. I believe I still have it somewhere (I’d really love to put that fabric to use now that I have a sewing machine and some idea of how to use it!), but I haven’t seen it in years.

59513_10150264966830134_3889446_nMost of the gals on my Ghana trip bought fabric and had dresses made. The dress I’m wearing here (that’s me in the middle in that amazing orange and purple bird fabric!) never quite fit, and it’s the one that’s MIA in some fabric scrap box somewhere.

IMG_7996I was so happy with the first pair that I had to make a second. This fabric came from Hancock Fabrics, which is closing and selling everything at up to 80% off. Too good to pass up! I was very well behaved- all I bought was the floral lawn I used here, a heavier woven Southwest-style pattern in a pastel palette, and some thread- and I’m very happy with my purchases.

IMG_7990 The City Gym shorts in both of these fabrics are very lightweight and very comfortable, and despite a somewhat bunchy waistband (I think I’ll cut my next pair so that there’s a little less fabric between the waistband and the crotch shaping. The leg length is perfect, but they’re too tall overall.), I’m really happy with how they turned out! I’m glad to have two pairs that are in such different color palettes, so I can match them with most of my tops.


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