Saturday, 28 January 2012

Finished! The Perfect Liberty Wrap Dress!...

 Oh My Gosh I am so in love with this dress. I took quite a lot of time getting it right after the Meh first version. All I have to say is the fabric can completely make this dress! This is a Liberty Carnaby Jersey I got for Christmas (£15 per metre but the pattern takes up just over 2m) So the cost of this is £30 and it took about 12 hours. This has made me re-think the quality of the fabric I buy bigtime.

So worth it though. There is nothing I don't like about this dress. I chose not to cut a size down as the Jersey was a completely different weight. It will get altered as I lose the weight but for now it fits just fine!
We decided to have a go at taking photos at Worthing Beach as we live 2 minutes walk away.
I don't think the photo's came out too badly 
                                                (Thanks Piemaker for putting up with me) 
Not to mention it isn't an orphan! It will go with lots of stuff in my wardrobe! Plus I'm in the process of making it a friend!
                                                       So What's The Verdict People?

Friday, 27 January 2012

Do You Sew Orphans?...

This may seem like a bit of a weird question but fear not I do not mean stitching together poor unfortunate Oliver Twist types. I'm talking poor unfortunate fabrics!

Haven't you ever made something, put it in your wardrobe and gone... Oh it matches nothing?
I have.  I have noticed that I just wander around my stash and just pick out what I fancy with no mind as to what else it would match in my wardrobe! This is something I need to fix and is one of the reasons I can't rely wholly on stashbusting.

I. Love. Colour. This is part of my problem yet in the same breath, the cure. There are the odd things that match but not enough stuff interchanges!
I also adore pattern and this is part of my problem. 80% of what I make is patterned. While dresses in themselves aren't a problem. I still end up with stuff that doesn't co-ordinate or work together.

This means that I have to be SENSIBLE.
This is a word not often associated with me. I go all gooey over pretty things!

Heres a couple of outfits I can currently make ( The purple cord skirt is miles too big/ The yellow top is too wide on the neck so they aren't very wearable.)
Its not the worst selection but I'd like a few more layering bits and some TROUSERS!
We know I can do a Me Made Month but I did find it a struggle last time!
I would like a wardrobe like Erica B That lady's got style! But she rarely makes patterned pieces.
I think I'm a bit more quirky than her
Think a mix of Bernadette Rostentowski, (Big Bang Theory)

and Zooey Deschanel

Do You Sew Orphans?

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Its A Wrap! Dress

 This was a bit of a wearable muslin for Kwik Sew 3482. The fabric cost quite a bit (8.99pm) and although I'm not disappointed by the fit. The fabric just isn't me. It's ok, im not heartbroken as this pattern was intended for my Liberty Jersey I got at Christmas. I have already cut that and I'm liking it a lot better.
Since I've started seeing a bit of a difference with the weight loss (and I have a wireless camera shoot thingy) i'm trying to push myself to do back shots too. Be gentle!
I did add the collar to this dress but it just didn't look right with short sleeves. The next version is going to have long sleeves and hopefully the collar.
I think wrap dresses are a good call at the moment as it means they can be adjusted easily as I shrink!

This Diane Von Furstenburg is a classic! I can see this pattern becoming a bit of a TnT!

Sunday, 22 January 2012

Cherry Picked Blouse...

 Another reveal! This is a cherry print chiffon version of Simplicity 2936.
This was meant to be in my Colette spring challenge! I finally finished it.
I'm not hugely keen on the final thing, loose flowing things aren't really my style but I think if I took it in a bit more it could be a cute enough blouse. Its my favourite shade of mustard so it will go with a lot of stuff already in my wardrobe.
Unfortunately it was a pain to put together. The fabric slipped and so i cut the collar too short which meant I had to make the round neckline into a V.
I have cut out another tank top style in this fabric but I think I'll leave it a while before I sew with it again.
Overall I don't hate it and with a couple adjustments I suspect it will be a useful wearable piece!

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Organisation: Realising Potential

I am the first to admit I love my fabric. Every bit makes me squeal with delight every time Its pulled it out its box. But that was just the problem with my sewing room. Its taken me a few months to realise. I would shove things in boxes and forget their existence.

So what I spent a lot of yesterday doing was getting out my 8 (Gulp) boxes of fabric, merrily ignoring the trunk in my bedroom and started to put it onto my shelves. I haven't yet photographed every single piece but that is what I intend to so I have instant access to what I already have.

I was pleased to find this shelf housed over 40 (?!!?) pieces of fabric. The top is Jerseys and Stretch/Sateen Cottons, second is a mix, but mostly bottom weight or capsule wardrobe ideas.
I started grouping fabrics together that I thought might work nicely.
The bottom is Quilting cottons, lawn and miscellaneous. This left me with only 2 boxes! Plus I can see the majority of fabrics I own pretty much all the time! I think this will make it easier to utilise what I have in my stash.

This is not a stash busting exercise, however that might be a happy outcome of it. I'm calling this "Realising Potential." I'm sure lots of us have fabric hidden away that never gets looked at and is never considered for the next project. I think being able to see it is helpful. How on earth are you meant to know whats at the bottom of the sixth box under the bed? It might be a gem you've forgotten!

I'm not saying I will not be buying fabric. You all know i'm too far gone for that, but what I will do is be more thoughtful and sensitive to my wardrobe needs and what my stash has to offer.
I've also fully digitised my pattern collection so I can see everything by pattern company.
Technology is awesome.

Monday, 9 January 2012

Tinkerbell Meets Obama: The Meringue Skirt

This was my first Sew Weekly Challenge of the year! Here it is my Meringue skirt! It was based on an accessory my Grandmother’s long string of pearls and a 1950s gold flower brooch. They weren’t my only inspiration for this outfit! I was totally trying to channel Michelle Obama’s outfit.

Not bad but there is definitely an element of Tinkerbell in a minty green with a scalloped hem!
 I learnt some good new techniques even though the catch stitching did my head in!
I even managed to sew in these fab little labels Piemaker bought me for Christmas!
The fabric was a narrow width from Barcelona. Overall I'm pleased with the skirt and I think it would fit nicely into the graduate wardrobe.

Thursday, 5 January 2012

Wearable Muslin: Petal Dress

This is Vogue 8631. I decided on this pattern to use for my Fancy Moon fabric, Remember the draping here? I've had this pattern for ages and have been desperate to try it. The pattern is rated Easy and I didn't quite believe them.
However it really was easy. This dress went together in a day and then it was hemmed up last night.
Its made from a flimsy poly cotton I had lying about the stash. I have lots of plain block colours of poly but they make nice shirts and muslins.

So, the dress.
Overall I like it, the cotton isn't see through which I expected it to be, but I still had fit issues with the shoulders (When don't I?) My narrow shoulders made the front wrap droop and not fit neatly over my boobs so I tried to get Piemaker to pin a wedge from my neck, tapering out but he didn't quite get what I meant so I had to kind of botch it myself.

I trimmed about 1.5inch off tapering in like a dart but I took a touch too much off and it feels a tiny bit tight. Although now the dress is finished it doesn't feel as bad as I thought it would. This is a loose fitting dress. I think I would be brave enough to cut a size down for the next one. Also this dress was a nightmare to hem, one super long seam, curvy in some places and not in others! You need serious patience.

Adele, my body double needs slimming down. This dress just fits her whereas on me its a little big in places (Hoorahh!)
I think this dress will be nice to pop on in the summer and I think it would be good if we went on holiday as a beach wrap (It only fastens with two hook and eyes). The pleats don't stay too well and I think I might tack them down on the final dress as the material is a fine lawn.
One last parting shot...

Monday, 2 January 2012


I have been psyching myself up to do this post. I have done a croquis of my body as suggested in the Colette Handbook. I did this by taking a photo of myself in tight fitting clothing and drawing my true outline.
A few other people have done it around the blogisphere too and I applaud their bravery!

Although this is not an easy thing to do, I think it is a massive step in understanding your own body and  helping you to see how the clothes you make will fit and suit you.
I think this will prevent me from making quite a few mistakes!

So, lets talk about this picture above... 
My first thought was that I was horrified and struck by how short I am. But the more I look at it, the better things get. I'm 2inches off hourglass and I am very lucky that my body is fairly balanced. My legs are more normal that I imagined them to be but I have very narrow shoulders. 
This is my main fitting issue along with a small waist and wide hips.
Overall its not so bad!  

 I started drawing out a few patterns I want to make to see how they would work on my body,
I really like the Colette Parfait,
 I also tried out a suit combination I had in my graduate wardrobe board. I didn't like the Cynthia Rowley dress so much but I think I will use the other versions of that pattern.

Finally I had a go at the Lady Grey jacket. I think everyone should have a go at this! Its not as harrowing as you imagine!
Would you ever make your own Croquis?