Monday, September 29, 2008

Skirt progress

I managed to make a pretty good start on my friend's Vogue skirt before my husband and I took off for camping last week. It's made of a black stretch wool from Michael's fabrics, and lined/underlined with charcoal grey stretch silk charmeuse. Here are a few pics of the progress:

Front, belt loops were attached to the outer waistband only

Inside waistband, the rigeline boning was stitched through along the seam allowances
Inside of waistband, I only interfaced the front panel as I want to take advantage of the stretchy fabric.

Inside out, still needs the bottom edge of the waistband finishing, zipper, and hem.


I am still sort of dreading attaching the lining to the hem vent and back seam, I think it will all have to be done by hand due to the underlining method of attaching the lining. Does anyone have a good method for doing this? My RTW clothing all looks so neat on the inside, there must be a way to do it.

Monday, September 22, 2008

DVF cuffs--a tutorial

I've made vented cuffs on knits a few times now, following the directions for the infamous Vogue 8379 wrap dress. They work fine, but leave an unfinished seam allowance on the inside that always seems to fold the wrong way when I put my garments on. I recently made a copy of a Diane von Furstenberg dress that a friend lent me, and spent some time studying the cuff. I think I figured out the method used there, and took lots of pictures when making mine so I could put together this tutorial. I hope someone finds this helpful!! I know I was really confused by the Vogue instructions at first but it does work.

DVF Cuff Tutorial

Catching up

Well a new hard drive later and I'm still having computer problems at home, so sorry for the lack of updates. I have been sewing, shopping, and brainstorming so I have lots to tell you about but my laptop decided it hates blogger and ditches my internet connection every time I tried to get in.

First of all, thank you to Lindsay T and Sigrid for nominating me for a blog award, thank you so much! Lindsay I am so flattered that you want me to blog more, and Sigrid I am amazed that I actually inspire YOU. The debt is certainly on my end.

In other news, I have again accepted a 'sewing for hire' project, if all goes well I may actually let my friend take me out to dinner upon completion. However this time said friend is somewhat local, and she happens to live within 10 minutes of Stonemountain fabric store in Berkeley. No of course that didn't influence my decision. :-) Last weekend I went over her house to fit the muslin for this Vogue skirt, she has a dress by black halo that she adores and wanted a skirt just like it.

Knowing LauraLo and Erica B already made this one up, I figured it was a shoe in. The muslin fit like a dream the first time, even though I had to blend two sizes and take out 3 inches of length between the waist and hip. Girlfriend was obviously talented with the measuring tape, since I didn't measure her! I also found some goodies at Stonemountain, a rayon/lycra print that I already made up into a DVF knockoff last weekend (pics to follow), a DVF wool jersey, some silk organza to play with, and a couple rayon/lycra solids for some knit tees.

I had just recieved a packet of swatches from Michael's Fabrics, with a bunch of gorgeous wools and silks, so I brought that with me for my friend to paruse. She ended up finding a lovely black wool/elastic blend, and I couldn't resist getting some of this great plaid for wool pants. I picked up a couple Vogue Alice & Olivia patterns a few weeks ago, I figure it's probably time for me to attempt some pants. I think this one is the front runner right now.

And finally, I managed to snag a copy of Patrones Extra # 272 from the lovely Christina, who has just posted some pics from the magazine and is kindly having a contest to give one away on her blog! I've got several things earmarked already, stay tuned...

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Clothing label sale

Well I was going to wait to announce the news that I finally purchased my very own clothing labels for loohoo originals, but they just sent me an email about a 20% off sale. Of course I ordered a few days too early to take advantage, but for anyone else who's interested here it is!

Code: "halloween" for 20% off the entire website until Monday September 15.

This site is one of the few that makes custom woven labels with very small quantity requirements, I ordered these which take about a month to get according to the site, but the cost is very reasonable, 50 for $22 with the code. And I know Christina at assorted notions has ordered from them before and was happy with her purchase. If you've been thinking about it now's a good time to do it!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Going with the Flow

Remember this linen shell from months ago? The one I said I had several colors of silk charmeuse ready to go for? Well I finally dug out this pattern again, made some final tweaks, and sewed it up over the weekend. Only it didn't turn out the way I planned.

Do you see anything different here?


Yes the pleats are backwards. That's because I decided I wanted the dull side of the charmeuse on the outside, but forgot when I was doing the french seams and sewed it inside out. Of course I didn't notice after only one seam, I think I had the entire front section together. So instead of ripping it all out I decided to just go with the flow, and make it up shiny side out with inside out pleats. I meant to do that, right?

On the upside, I did draft an all in one facing for this version, following the instructions in Claire Schaeffer's High Fashion Sewing Secrets.* I interfaced the facing only, finishing the raw edge with pinking shears. And I made my very own fabric covered button for the back neckline, and a fabric loop also following Saint Claire's book. Why is there a button there you ask? Oh just a little problem with a too-short zipper. The sewing gods obviously did not want me to finish this shell the way I had imagined. They were probably also responsible for the grease/dirt spots my sewing machine left on the right shoulder when the fabric bumped up against the needle arm. *&%$^$ Luckily after washing it 3 times after finishing it, I was able to get them out. And I can now say with confidence that pinked, interfaced silk charmeuse holds up perfectly well to machine washing.

All-in-one facing, it faces the neckline and armholes together,
and is tacked down at the princess and side seams.

My fabric-covered button (thanks Susan K!)

I will take some outfit photos later this week, but I'm planning on wearing it tucked into skirts and pants with a cardigan. I really needed some interesting layers like this for work.


In other news, my wonderful friend in DC for whom I made the Michael Kors knockoff is sending me two more Diane von Furstenberg dresses to copy. She has an impressive library of them, (most of which are my size!), and is generous enough to let me borrow whatever I want. Now to find some more silk jersey....

*I feel like I should send this woman more money, I have used so many techniques in that book.