Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Graduation dress (Butterick 6582)

I have severly neglected my blog for many moons now and so much has happened! I won first prize in the Colette Patterns Laurel Fall/Winter category which was so exciting - I was able to choose a heap of goodies from Sew Squirrel, Stitch56, Schnittchen and Indie Stitches! I've been working on a few different projects here and there - but most important to me has been my graduation dress!

I chose the Butterick 6582 which I had previously made up in the wiggle version. This time I went for the dramatic fuller skirt and accompanied with a petticoat for extra volume!

I lined the bodice with the technique described in Gertie's Book for Better Sewing attaching it to the facings, using some scrap satin. I really wanted to line the bodice and maintain a clean edge and this was the perfect technique. 

I didn't have the proper 'belting' material that the pattern asked for so I improvised with some extra layers of interfacing and used a belt buckle with a prong.

And here is the finished product - it didn't take very long to make - it was more just my laziness organising to get an eyelet punched in the belt before it could be photographed 100% complete.

I used some upholstery fabric my grandma gave to me when she was clearing out her stash and she was quite impressed with the results...I tried to put a bit of effort into my pattern piece placement to take advantage of the big beautiful design. 

And I finished the petticoat from my last post - which now has a ribbon trimming around the edge! About 16 metres in fact.

So voila! A very delayed post about my retro-chair fabric-graduation dress!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Making a petticoat

Holy. Crap. Making a petticoat - like a serious multi-layered and multi-tiered - is a substantial feat.

I have been working on one to pair with my Butterick 6582 full skirt dress. The best tutorial I found was by Sugardale : she doesn't post as much as she used to but her petticoats are to die for!

Doing a little bit of maths, I worked out that I gathered 28 metres of tulle to make a three-tier, double layer petticoat. I still have to finish the seams and hem with ribbon - but that's coming from China so it might be a couple of weeks. Looking for ribbon has pretty much confirmed that Spotlight is over priced and useless. How I loathe going to that store.

You can adapt a basic petticoat structure to increase the amount of puffiness - Sugardale makes ten layer petticoats which become the feature of her dresses.

This is the structure I used:
More pictures to come soon - when I get the ribbon and finish the accompanying dress. I made this petticoat short/long enough to work with many dresses in my wardrobe, so hopefully I won't need to make another for quite a while...

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Iris shorts

Product Disclaimer: Consumers should be advised that these photos are horrid because its about 12 degrees outside so I had to take them inside.

*Clears throat*

Here we have yet another faithful pattern from Colette, which I might add has nominated me in the top 20 for the Reader's Choice catergory of their Laurel Competition! Woo!

My first pink pair are made out of a heavy textured cotton remnant and floral cotton for the pocket lining.

I chose to do a lapped zip instead of invisible because, well, I hate invisible zips. So. Much. They never sit right and I can never get them past joins in the fabric. And when I try they break. Hate. Them.
The lapped zips I've made in the past haven't been as perfect as I'd like, so in my second pair of shorts I followed this tutorial. For the second pair I also added 1 inch to the crotch as the pink pair were a little tight around there...

This black is made from a bit of left over cotton sateen and spotty cotton for the pocket lining. I also scalloped the hems because its a very cute finish! Only downside to this pair is that I was concentrating so hard on making the lapped zip perfect that it's facing the wrong way..


I will be graduating in about 2 months so next I be working on my dress for the ceremony! Very excited!

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Sunday best

To close this week I've got the last two entries for the Laural competition. Some of the other entries are really impressive and have given me lots of ideas for future projects!

This blue version is a cotton drill nautical look, with wide collar and grograin ribbon embellishment.  I drafted the collar myself, normally I shy away from drafting my own alterations but it turned out well and I am happy with the finish, particularly the way it sits at the shoulders. The sleeved I used are from the Colette Macaron pattern - which I couldn't for the life of me get to not pucker at the armhole. I hate easing in sleeves but think I might have found a way to take out some of the ease for future attempts.

My last entry was following the instructions of the original pattern with a paisley print and a contrast bias edge for the neck and arms. This pattern really is a stash buster, as I was able to make this paisley dress with a scrap piece that wasn't enough to make anything else.

To round out the week my friend Anita and I hit up the Flemington Market. While the crafts and preserves were great to look at, turns out we were only really in it for the food. And the dutch pancakes were the.best.thing.ever. Will definitely be going back for these! It was also great to get an idea of how people present their product and what people are interested at purchasing at markets (food mostly). I've always had a keen interest in doing a market stall with my own crafts but finding a product and niche market is half the battle so as Anita said, I was doing "Market Research".

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Mad men challenge 2

It was a bit of a last minute decision to enter Julia Bobbin's contest this year but with an extension until tomorrow, I thought between then and Friday was enough time to whip something up.

I based my dress on the gem tones of Joan Harris in this outfit.

I really envy this woman's wardrobe.

This dress is based on the Colette Laurel pattern and also doubles as an entry into their competition. I added the pockets from the pattern and the extra pink welt. I lengthened the sleeves from half to 3/4 for a winter friendly design and also manipulated the original collar to include the pink contrast and bow.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Tessuti Cape

It's been a while since my last post, but this just means I've been doing a lot of sewing, rather than having nothing to post about. I'm working on three pieces for the Laurel Sewing Contest and that has been taking up most of my time designing and sewing.  
All will be reveled closer to the end of the month!

In the meant time you can marvel at my Tessuti Cape! I used a BETTINA LIANO black wool for the body and a wool/polyester for the lining. I was inspired by Julia Bobbin's beautiful cashmere cape and really wanted to be prepared for Melbourne's 80%-of-the-year winter. 

I loosely followed her suggestions on Pattern Review to line the jacket rather than doing the wool binding technique suggested in the pattern. I am really happy with the result, especially seeing as I spent several hours hand sewing it in. I also understitched the facings very carefully to hold the shape better. I'm not sure if Julia did that or topstitched but I'm very happy with the clean look the understitching gives. 

I chose to use toggles closures on this cape and a tartan lining, both features reminiscent  of a jacket I had a child. The patches holding the toggles were going to be leather but it was difficult and costly to get my hands on anything decent so inside I opted for using the wool remnants and sandwiched the cord in between two patches.

The sides are closed using 18mm snap fasteners - I was a bit nervous about buttonholing the beautiful designer wool but these are very strong and do the job perfectly.