dummies, elephants, and Africa


self-made blouse & bow tie, Gina Tricot skirt, Just Kulkith batik shoes, Swatch watch, unbranded glasses.

one of my previous co-workers brought me this fabric as a souvenir from California some years ago. the design is by Fabrice de Villeneuve for Robert Kaufman, called “Dress Up”. it has little images of dummies (or mannequins) with all kinds of different dresses, and my ex co-worker said that she immediately thought of me when she saw this fabric. that was so sweet of her! 🙂

for years i’ve been saving it for something special, and now finally i found just the perfect pattern for it.

burda7255it’s one of BurdaStyle’s vintage collection, pattern no. 7255. the size starts at 38, so i downsized it as i usually use size 36 for all my previous BurdaStyle patterns… and let me save you from all the trouble of doing it by yourself, because it turns out that the result was a bit too tight. i guess the pattern also has vintage sizes or something, and 38 then is the equivalent of 36 now. d’oh!

but anyway, it ‘s still wearable (it wouldn’t be me if i just declare it a failure!). all i needed to do was put more buttons than the original version, because otherwise i would be stripping even with the slightest movements. :p



the special detail about this pattern is the back side, where there’s a small …er… flap (?) in the middle. anyway, i suppose back in the old days they used net-like fabrics, to add some sort of ventilation to the shirt. pretty handy in the summer. 😀 and this is perfect for me, because the fabric i got was actually not big enough for me to make this shirt… so using the old trick, i combined it with another fabric, just for that flap thing in the middle of the back side.

dummyelephantdetail1that’s where the elephants came in. 🙂

this elephant fabric is an Indonesian batik fabric, and i think the colours are just perfect to be combined with the Robert Kaufman fabric, don’t you? and since i already put the elephants there, i thought, what’s the harm in putting them also on the bow tie?



the other project i’ve just finished also uses old fabrics (yay for sticking to my 2014 resolution!). just like the rest of my poor old fabrics, they had been waiting in my closet for far too long just for that perfect pattern… or actually, in this case, for an idea to come up in my head. because not only did i use old fabrics, i also used an old pattern. by old, i mean, only 2 years old. 😉


picture borrowed from BurdaStyle magazine.

it’s pattern no. 106B from BurdaStyle magazine, May 2012 issue. when i first saw this pattern, all i saw was that it needs over 2 meters of fabrics and i thought, well, i don’t have any fabric that is that long. only now did it occur to me that i could actually combine 2 fabrics for it. so that’s what i did.


H&M t-shirt, self made skirt, Spirit sandals, jersey fabric worn as headband, necklaces from Legian -Bali, earrings from ITC Permata Hijau – Jakarta.

those brilliant-looking fabrics i used for the skirt are called African wax cotton fabrics. it’s basically cotton, but the colouring technique uses wax (kind of like batik) so that the end result is a bit stiffer than normal cotton.

the first time i saw these lovely fabrics, i was screaming joyfully inside. i had always wished Indonesian batik fabrics could use neon colours like these, so when i saw these it was like i found a distant cousin of Indonesian batik. it made me happy too, because i was so fed up with the kind of impression that “African look” = safari look. i mean, yeah sure, if you, as a tourist, go to Kenya or something, then you would probably want to go on a safari and wear those jumpsuits, but i mean, come on… there’s much much more to Africa/African look than those boring khaki jumpsuits (that are not even originally African). now THIS is what i think of when i think of African look. ❤

anyway, enough ranting. so, i ended up using 2 separate fabrics for this skirt, which thankfully have the same colour palettes. i made it using the size 36, which is one size smaller than usual for bottoms, because i usually feel too much looseness in the waist when i use size 38. since this skirt has very wide hemline, i thought i’d be okay with 36. but yeah, i was wrong yet again. the skirt ended up a bit too small even on the waist area, which resulted in a small alteration on the front part. and this is why i couldn’t make the graphics on the center front of the skirt align with one another. thank God i don’t have OCD.





all i need now is warmer weather (it did actually get very warm here for a while, +20C and even more… but for the past week it’s been cold again, snick!). well, hopefully these colour therapies would help summon more sunlight & warmth!

now for a small bonus, i’m gonna put on a Julia Fordham song about South Africa, called Happy Ever After. i just LOVE this song, and it’s been playing in my head ever since i started sewing this skirt. it’s time now to pass on the catchy-ness. 😀

PS. i do not own the video, the song, nor the lyrics. i just borrowed them for personal use.

14 thoughts on “dummies, elephants, and Africa

  1. awwww….. love the african look. The bandanna goes really well with the outfit. Could wear some bigger earrings, i think. And an armful of bracelets, hahaha, to “complete” the african feel. I think I know that elephant batik 😀
    Well, a big congrats again on the successful projects!

  2. setiap kali liat hasil project nya puni gue selaluuuu aja ngiler…blouse nya gue banget deh itu hihihi. Safari look nya cantiik! tapi kok gue malah ngira ini Frida Kahlo ya daripada afrika? gue nya aja yg oon deh hahaha. Bagus banget puni! batik modern (yg affordable ya) sekarang gonjreng gonjreng loh, cakep cakep gue liat di Thamrin City rasanya mo mborong aja :p

    • oh ya? suka model2 retro/vintage ya Pie? tooooossss lagi! 😀

      gue pas mau foto2 juga mikir kok malah mirip gayanya Frida Kahlo ya…tinggal kurang bunga2an di atasnya bandana, hahahah! kesimpulannya we’re all brothers & sisters! dari batik Indonesia nyerempet ke African wax dan nyerempet lagi ke artis Meksiko.

      Thamrin City itu apa yaaa? (udh lama ga pulkam nih!) gue cuma gaul sekitar Mayestik aja sih, di sana ya ada lah batik modern, tapi ga neon2 gitu warnanya. pengen borong juga, tapi sayang tempat di koper selalu terbatas, huhuhu..

      • hihihi iyaaa! Naah, Thamrin City itu semacam tempat pusat batik sekarang deh puni 🙂 macem – macem, ada batik mana aja, tenun ikat, dll. Dari yg mahal sampe yg murce 🙂

      • hiyahhhh, bikin pengen pulkam aja deh lo Pie! 😥 thanks for the info, lain kali ke Jkt bakal mampir ke sana deh, hihih… sayang ga ada online shop-nya ya, wakakakak… klo ada juga paling2 ongkirnya lebih mahal dibanding batiknya.

  3. Pingback: the fabric scrap tribe | Step Into The Silver Rain

  4. Pingback: glitz, glam, and salmon pink | Step Into The Silver Rain

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.