White and Cream Must Never Be Seen?

I’m having a sewing stay-cation this weekend!  This isn’t just any stay-cation, this is a serious wardrobe sewing binge weekend.  I don’t think I can actually blog the finished objects just yet, but I can share a few snippets and beg advice, right?Today I dropped by my favorite purveyor of guipure lace, Lincraft in the Myer Centre downtown.  This is the real deal- heavy, delicious, dense cotton lace.  I used it recently on skirt linings for Scallops and also for the Jasmine Revolution Dress.

I’m especially drawn to geometric, “not-lacy-lace” qualities.  And that delicious icicle lace!

Seriously, I can’t get enough guipure.  I’m dying to dream up a good way to feature these extra-wide pieces.  They’re 6″-7″ (15-ish cms).

It’s time to use some of this lace in my sewing as a feature rather than a discreet trim.  I plan to use it along the neck edge of a version of Jalie’s 2794 knit top, in a cream New Zealand merino slub knit.   I’d like to make flutter sleeves, or something very pretty but slightly off-beat.  Would that be too much?  Should I just let the lace and the fabric speak without risking the sleeves pulling focus?

Problem?  The lace is white, and the merino is cream.  The difference is not alarming in person, only somewhat more pronounced than the photo.

Is pairing white and cream a no-no?  I know many sewists and quilters in “real life,” opinion among them seems divided, sometimes passionately.  I’m interested to hear as many varied opinions and anecdotes as possible- perhaps we can settle the white and cream debate.

Update on the T-Shirt project- I am very upset and frustrated by my complete inability to transfer the lovely patterns from my drafting table to the screen and have it print off in the CORRECT SIZE.  I booked a consultation with some nerds I know (any nerds reading this and want to help, please email me).  I’ll post the patterns as soon as I can.  I have some fantastic ideas for things to try with the shirt pattern and it’s killing me not to proceed!


  1. if you not use the cream and withe by exident, “sondern bewusst” (how to say in english?) it can be a nice designfeature. and go for big sleeves because big sleeves make a smaller bust ;-) i´m quite the same figure then you but with almost 20 years more expierience on my back………
    greatings from icy berlin

  2. I don’t know how to say it in English, but I’ll find out from a friend if you post in German. :)

    I like the way you think. Thank you for the blast of cool air- it’s another warm, still night here in brisbane.

    • Google Translate gives you something like “not by accident but on purpose.” I think that must be what friend Beate meant.

  3. I always believe that neutrals go with anything including other neutrals. If the lace and fabric are not exactly the same color then the lace will become more of a focal point drawing the eye to it. Make sure you put it where you want to eye to go. I put trim and pattern on my chest because I have a great set of “girls” but my gut and double chin are not so impressive. I want folks viewing me to look there or at my eyes and hair.

  4. White and cream certainly DO go together! Don’t let the “Color Nazis” browbeat you — slight variations of a tone family make an outfit more interesting. And remember that you can put even goofy patterns together if you remember to repeat each design element at least once. You could, for instance, repeat the lace on the sleeves and as an insert down the side seam, or around the hemline, or cut into a shape and appliqued somewhere on the blouse if you are truly worried about this design decision.

    • Nah, I’m not scared of the color Nazis, just more concerned I don’t spend a lot of time on something that most people will look at and think “Can’t she even make her lace match?” ;)

  5. As far as I can see, your design intuition is usually spot on!!! I say “go fer it!” with the white & cream combos. I’m wondering if putting 2/3 different patterns of lace on a garment and making a feature of their “non-matchingness” would look ok? X

  6. I think white and cream look beautiful together, and very summery. The white makes the cream look like a “color” rather than a neutral.

    It’s a lovely feminine combination. The only caveat is to make sure that they are far enough apart in tone to show the intentionality of the pairing. With your picture above, it doesn’t look like that would be a problem.

  7. I like white and cream together. Sometimes it can look accidental but can also look really great if done well. They look nice together in your photo! Guipure is my favorite lace too; it’s so soft and those are just gorgeous.

    • Yes, I think there’s some great tips for figuring out if its “right” or not here in this discussion. Very very interesting. :) Thank you.

      I could… you know… procure some for someone if they wanted…

  8. Love white and cream, especially when the lace is white and the dress cream. I’ve made many a wedding dress based on this combo, and I love that the heavy applique laces actually show up after all that darned work! :) Do ooooooooo it!

  9. Go for it. I enlarged, squinted, and walked into at least three different kinds of light to see if they clashed and, honestly, I didn’t even notice any color difference.

    • I love it– I took the picture in the late afternoon light, perhaps I should be sure to go out in full sunlight for color/texture shots from now on… :)

  10. I like white and cream together too.. just not on my bed where the white pillowcases are making the cream sheets look stained rather than deliberate. I suppose thats the big issue – does the white make the cream look like dirty white, or does it still look like cream? If it looks dirty, maybe more thought is needed. If it still reads as cream, go for it!

    • You know, I think you’re on to something. That’s a really good litmus test. In this case, the cream still looks creamy (a little warmish) and not dirty at all. Thanks.

      • What Sarah said, and if that doesn’t work, go with a tea dye as Tantis suggested :-)

        Whether I’m OK with whites and creams together depends entirely on the white and cream. Generally I don’t like white guipure lace because it looks too new and manufactured, but sometimes that isn’t the case. So go with what looks good to you!

  11. I would probably drop the lace in a tea bath to get it a creamy shade (even if not one perfectly matching the fabric). Though I don’t think white and cream together necessarily look bad.

    I’m so bummed the computer drafting is being such a beotch! Any idea what the problem is? :(

      • When printing, there is a difference between scale and margin. When we print to a printer the printer itself has a side margin that it cannot print on, this is usually taken up by the printers rollers, A way of determining this quickly, (without reading through the printer manual) is to open Microsoft Word, under file and page setup you can set the side margins to whatever you want, however it will give you an error stating it has to be so much to accommodate the printer. Thats the space the rollers take up and the printer cannot print on the side.

        If you print something one to one, with no scale the printer will just, not print out the whole image, it will be cut off where the printer margin takes over. If you are getting results where the image is shrunk then you are dealing with the program not printing one to one, but re-scaling the image before sending to the printer.

        I hope this helped.

        • You’re so kind! Thank you for posting, I will definitely try that. :) It may just be the problem… The printed image is just a little bit off, just enough to not be useful.

  12. I absolutely love cream and white together. I’ve seen it a lot in shabby chic interior design and if I was a better housekeeper I would use it at home. Likewise with garments. I think it is a really stylish combination and I can see it working really well for you with your colouring. I would be filthy in five minutes. I like the lace styles you’ve chosen, too.

    • I’d usually be filthy, too… This is something to wear under a suit, or else I probably wouldn’t go there. I’d just dye it lilac (thought about it for a while..).

  13. I agree with all the other cream and white fans. For example, I love shiny white trim with creamy matte walls. But I do believe that you might need to examine the undertones of the cream and white to make sure they don’t clash. When I look at it, it actually looks like there is some white in the cream, and I love how clean that makes the white lace look next to it.

  14. Pingback: So Grateful for Creative Collaboration- Help! « 3 Hours Past the Edge of the World

  15. Pingback: Finished Object: Snowflake Top in Merino And Guipure « 3 Hours Past the Edge of the World

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