Friday, 26 August 2016

Hawthorn the Dress

 Hey look I'm over my writer's block after a few months of being super busy in the studio. 

 This is my first Hawthorn dress, but not my first Hawthorn rodeo. This time I kept it super simple with no sleeves or collar(aka I didn't have enough fabric. If someone writes this to my tombstone, I won't mind). It's a size 10 bodice with the changes I made to my Reversible Hawthorn Blouse. The skirt portion is a simple rectangular piece that's gathered in the waist. 

The fabric is a vintage cotton which I scored from an online auction ages ago but like most fabrics I own, it simply traveled to the stash to wait for its turn. I'm happy I chose the Hawthorn for this one. The seams are finished with the serger, the hem is overlocked and turned back once and stitched down. The armholes are bias bound and the neckline is finished with the facings that came with the pattern. I found these cute black buttons for fastening.

This has been one of my favorite pieces this summer. Simple and fun to wear and feels super comfortable.

Monday, 4 July 2016

Linen Clover Dress

SHE'S ALIVE!!!! Time has been running away from me like Sonic the Hedgehog recently. How have you been? It's so good to be back!

Today I'd like to show you a fun and cool summer dress I made for myself. 

This is a bright linen Clover Dress (pattern by Papercut Patterns). For my version I cut out size S, even though based on my measurements I should have cut size M, but after I looked at the finished measurements, I saw that with the ease S would fit me better.

The fabric is a border print linen that I scored from the remnant bin last spring. I decided to place my pattern widthwise instead of lengthwise on the fabric so I could play around with the lovely pattern. One side of the fabric had flowers and other had blurred wide strips of red, black and cream color. Due to not having enough yardage to cut out the dress in full hem width, I slightly reduced the width gradually. 

I love wearing this dress with a little black belt. The semi loose fit is great for the summer heat and the linen fabric allows my skin to breathe and is nice and cool to wear. While sewing I thought that I might have gone too far with the bright colors and colorblocking but in the end it doesn't even matter it turned out great.

Monday, 13 June 2016

Clémence skirt


In my quest to add more basic pieces into my wardrobe, I made this simple black Clémence skirt from Tilly and the Buttons' book Love at First Stitch. It's a very basic gathered skirt with a simple waistband. I did add pockets to the skirt because pockets are awesome.

The fabric is the same wool and synthetics mystery fabric from my stash I used to make this skirt. The fabric is a bit thicker and is warm in the cold seasons but I've discovered during the few hot days this year that it's also surprisingly cool to wear.

I also chose to deviate from the instructions when it came to installing a zipper. I opted to use a visible decorative zipper instead of an invisible zip. To finish the seam allowances, I used my serger and I hand hemmed the skirt with invisible stitching.

Monday, 30 May 2016

Rayna Dress.

 Today I have a treat for you. When it comes to sewing for myself, I usually use patterns made by others as I don't feel like drafting a pattern for myself after I've dealt with drafting patterns for everyone else. Cobbler's children and all that. But when I was working on making my own wedding dress I decided to kill two birds with one stone and made me a bodice block that fits me. Since then I've used it a few times and this is one of the results. The Rayna Dress.

I had to attend a birthday party of a near and dear relative who turned 80 years old. I decided to make a simple dress with the fabrics I had in my stash. I had two rayon fabrics with sheer patterns and even though the pattern was slightly different, I figured it wouldn't make too much of a difference and would add an interesting twist. I also wanted to use this red cotton I had in my stash and decided to line the dress with it and add a contrasting waist piece.

I didn't want the seam allowances to be seen through the main fabric so I decided to use the red cotton as an underlining in the bodice. I finished the seams with the serger and used a bias tape to finish the neckline and armholes. 

I encased the bodice in the waist seam and sewed the two skirt layers simply onto the waist pieces, serged the seam and press it towards the waist. I also inserted an invisible zipper into the left side seam.

The hem of the main fabric is finished with the rolled hem setting on the serger. For extra oomph for the skirt, I finished the lining skirt with a horsehair tape and I love how much the skirt flares out. Makes me feel like a million bucks. Especially when paired with a killer pair of red shoes.

Friday, 20 May 2016

Pleated Tartan Skirt

Once upon a time I scored this nice wool and viscose blend fabric with colorful tartan pattern. The issue was what to do with it. I only had about 0,45 cm of it. One day I was looking at the Lace Waist Dress which was hanging in my closet and had the idea of using the skirt pattern pieces and making this fabric into a cute little skirt.

I cut the skirt as long as I possibly could and did no further fit changes than I did on the dress. However I drafted a waistband and cut it out from a plain black fabric from my stash. I inserted an invisible zipper in the center back seam and serged all the seams. I hemmed the skirt with invisible stitching by hand.

I love this skirt to pieces. And I'm pretty darn happy with the pattern matching. It was a pain(especially when it came to zipper insertion) but super rewarding in the end. Also after three wears the zipper broke(booo, bad zipper!) and the skirt travelled back to the UFO pile. However after a while I unpicked the zipper and inserted a new one and *knock on wood* three months later it's holding up just fine. Yay!

Thursday, 12 May 2016

Spotty Bronte Top

This is my first encounter with the Bronte Top pattern. I bought it many moons when it was a part of Perfect Pattern Parcel and kind of forgot about it. However being on a pattern buying ban I've started to look more seriously at what I already have and stumbled upon many patterns I have in my computer but have not printed out.

For my version I cut out size 14 in the bust and 12 in the waist and hips. I used a cotton jersey fabric from my stash. I bought the fabric about two years ago from Abakhan where I dug it out of a remnant bin. The pattern sewed up quite fast and I like the final result. However I am not in love with it. Maybe because there's not contrasting or details that pop out and it's not 100% me. I don't know. I'll try some contrasting next time and see what I think.

If you're thinking this skirt looks familiar and are not sure where you've seen it, it's the skirt I made for the Ulyana Sergeenko Challenge. But I've now shortened it. I realized that there's no place for a maxi skirt in my life and I rarely wore it. But since shortening it, it has been in constant rotation.

Monday, 25 April 2016

Something Old & Something New - A Self drafted wedding dress

A bride approached me with an interesting dress conception. She had a blouse with lace front and cotton back+peplum. She wanted me to use that lace from the bodice for her wedding dress bodice front. And then she pulled out three more fabrics. A nude netting, white floral lace and a peach chiffon. "Combine a dress for me from these" She then begun explaining what she wanted where. I would be lying if I said I wasn't overwhelmed by all this.

So this is the result of her idea. See through front, a netting back with some of the flowers from the skirt lace hand sewn on the netting plus some flowers around the armhole. She said she felt insecure about her armholes showing and this was our solution. The front lace stayed the same shape as there wasn't much to work with to begin with. The lace skirt is a semi circle with a train. The chiffon under the lace skirting is gathered at the waist and also has a train.

The dress fastens with buttons in the front until mid thigh so she can show off her legs while dancing. As the bodice area is very light and the white lace fabric is VERY heavy and would drag the whole dress down, I built in a waist stay that fastens with hooks and holds up the weight of the dress.

My favorite part of this dress is the train. She would have liked it to be even longer but I simply didn't have fabric for longer train. However she did like the fact that she can easily hook her finger through the lace and carry the train when she felt like. I attached the chiffon layer of the skirt to the lace with a tread chain.

And that's it. A wedding dress combined of four very different fabrics. The dress isn't something I would wear, but I still think it's pretty. And the bride was very happy with the result. The train, buttons, slit, bodice, see through bits were everything she wanted. Some brides go for modesty, some for sexy.