Sewing Projects


Just looking at these photos is making me a little sad. Is it just me, or do summers get shorter and shorter with each passing year? As much as I love layering and being cozy in the fall, there is nothing quite like that perfectly effortless summer favourite you can just throw on and walk out the door.

The Holly Jumpsuit was that garment for me this summer. I pretty much spazzed out when I heard that the By Hand Ladies were releasing a jumpsuit, since nothing makes me happier than 70’s vibes, and nothing is more 70’s than a one-piece (since it’s the new millennium we can leave the polyester with the 8 tracks). Sarah at Grey’s Fabric was kind enough to supply me with this navy linen-rayon. It was the perfect weight for Holly – drapey and soft with enough body to highlight the lovely wide legs of this baby.

Closet Case Files - Holly Jumpsuit Closet Case Files - Holly Jumpsuit-4 Closet Case Files - Holly Jumpsuit-3

Guillaume and I shot these while we were in Maine in June, after an afternoon of lobster eating and beer swilling. The water was too cold to do anything but admire, but I’m happy it matched my outfit.

As you’ve probably heard by now, the bodice variation I used is no longer available in the official release. I was hoping to sew up the sexy cowl version but I haven’t had a chance yet. I’m waiting for my paper copy; it’s the lead contender for my cousin’s upcoming wedding. I’m also imagining a Flora/Holly mashup – I think the tank version of the Flora would give a similar feel to what I’m rocking here.

I dropped the crotch about an inch, but I’ve heard there was a grading error with the copy I was sent which accounts for why I thought it was a little tight up in my bits. Otherwise I was quite happy with the fit of the pants though the original length only allows me to wear these with flats. I suggest checking the length of the inseam if you want to wear Holly with heels. I have some awesome herringbone chambray I bought from Grey’s that will make a lovely pair of summer weight Holly trousers for next year.

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Since I tested for this pattern, I also sent my usual notes about any typos or clarifications I thought the instructions needed. By Hand just wrote a post about their testers here, if you’re interested.

I wore this at least once a week all summer long. Linen is just so comfortable and breathable when it’s hot and sweaty out, and I always felt chic in this, even when the humidity was so thick I could scoop it in my hands. Finally, I’d like to say that this is actually pretty easy to get in and out of. Sometimes jumpsuits are a little complicated to take off when you’re heeding the call of nature, but the side zipper makes it pretty snappy. Just in case you were wondering, you can breathe and pee easy.


  • ms modiste

    What a beauty, I am looking at some silk linen now with this in mind for next summer. The internet is so cool with this pattern testing stuff, now I know what this looks like on someone with a figure similar to mine I can buy it with some peace of mind.

  • Tracy Lucas

    Gorgeous, I can’t wait to make my own version of the Holly!

  • I wasn’t sold on jumpsuits until I started seeing all the Holly makes. Now I’m sold! Great job!

  • I love this on you. I have to admit that it is the old version I love most. Looks great in linen.

    • Thanks my love! Super random question – is your name short for Debra?

      • Nope, I’m just debbie. Not even a middle name. My parents were doing minimalist when I was born 😉

  • sallieforrer

    Yay!! More Holly’s! This is lovely. I love the blue linen on you – so summery. And especially in that setting… sigh. Great idea to recreate the ‘old’ version by making a Holly/Flora mashup.

    • I thought that would be a good way to appease people in love iwth the original version!

  • oh beautiful! it its so you. i have to admit, though, that i am secretly happy about the “new” bodice, it has just that much more 70s spazz.

  • I think you just sold me the idea of a jumpsuit. Never in a million years would I have thought that I’d consider making a jumpsuit for myself but now it’s on my to-buy and to-sew list for next summer.

    Your version looks just so beautiful and chic and versatile. You can dress it up and down for pretty much any occasion and if there’s anything I love in the world, it’s multifunctional clothes.

    • Thanks Fooniks! I actually think you could totally wear this in the winter with a cardigan.

      • i think you might be right. But I need to recover from my last months pattern shopping spree first, haha 😀

  • Carly

    I was wondering if you had made this when you were in NYC because I love it (and I’m not usually sold on the jumpsuit look).

  • This looked awesome on you in NY. So chic – I especially like a dressy jumpsuit. Can’t wait to see what you do for that wedding.

  • Oh that last photo – I’m so sad I can’t see you in the next 2 weeks and flick our hair together :'( :'( :'(

  • I love it! It’s gorgeous in the linen. Also good to know you can breath and pee easy. Lol!

    • Its crucial. Unless you get one of those stadium buddies.

  • Gorgeous and glamorous and practical too! What more could you want in a jumpsuit!

  • This is so good, dude. Perfect fabric choice!

  • This looks great on you! Beautiful fabric. I wasn’t all that excited when I saw the pattern on the BHL website but I’m so happy to be seeing such beautiful makes of it. I think I’ll be buying that pattern ASAP.

  • juliana gago

    GORGEOUS! love your version!
    fabric is just perfect!

  • Oh my gosh, the scenery!!!!! Gorgeous. And you make everything look fabulous.

  • How cool that you can coordinate with the scenery around you! That jumpsuit looks sooooo comfy, like being snuggled in bed while being a productive adult. I totally need that vibe. Hehe!

    • Hahaha that is exactly what it’s like. Especially since I have a linen bed and it’s like getting out of a cozy bed into a new one!

  • Scruffybadgertime

    Gorgeous seeing the Holly in linen and being put through its summer paces. Looks fab. Pics are wonderful!! And I am seriously looking forward to your Holly tourers now…..

    • Thanks love! My fabric is too lightweight for the fall though…. summer! When it comes back, of course.

  • Man, I just love this. Linen-y, jumpsuit-y, summer-y perfection right here.

  • Elisabeth M. Schoopp

    I was actually wondering how you get out of one of those, so thanks for clearing that up 😉
    It looks gorgeous on you, and the fabric is lovely!

    • I got confused the first time I tried it on but if you just step through the straps it seriously isn’t a big deal to undo!

  • Francesca Amodeo

    Really cute – like all your makes! – but still not sold on jumpsuits, easy or not, you still have to take most of it off to pee….. that’s one reason I will never have another jumpsuit – it’s more stuff to hang below your knees whilst trying to keep fabric from cleaning up the floor….
    Heather – you want a long summer? Move to my island – it’s still 31 and up here! We swim till October – November. Wanna swap? Me, Canada, you Malta?

    • OH MAN I WISH! I’ve heard so many great things about Malta! Yes, jumpsuits aren’t for everyone, but I personally love a giant onesie, haha.

      • Francesca Amodeo

        Really? how cute! Then what are you waiting for to visit? now you know one of Malta’s few sewists too – no excuse!

  • Amy

    This is gorgeous. I’m such a jumpsuit fan and so wish I had time to make one at the moment! (Just this week was pattern-stalking another company’s jumpsuit…) I don’t care what you have to do to do your business (way worse than squeezy stockings imo)–they’re just cool!

  • Well now I definitely want this pattern. And summer back, just for one last hurrah—this summer felt REALLY short! Especially since fall seems to have arrived a bit ahead of schedule…

  • You look fabulous!

  • Amanda Russell

    It’s wonderful to look amazing, breezy and beautiful (which you do) but breathing and peeing is definitely more important LOL – good to know you can do both in Holly! 🙂 I quite like your fabric, it’s a really pretty colour and drape ^__^