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Showing posts from February, 2013

The couture cape: muslin adjustments

While I'm getting on terms with fitted dresses, I have made a decision regarding my first couture garment: it is going to be a cape!

More precisely, this cape:

I have already made a muslin, which I have fitted (on my own, with the camera!). Let me tell you how much longer this pattern is than that image - maybe 30cms or so? I cut the front pieces at pattern length, which was below my knees! I then cut along a "second" cutting line on the pattern (or at least that's what I think it was) - it's still too long, but I will shorten it further when hemming the finished product.

This is a picture of the wool I'm using - taken by phone, so not great. The fabric is lovely Italian wool I picked up in Romania over the Christmas break. I can't decide if it's green or brown. What do you think?

Regarding other materials, I'm using silk organza for underlining. Currently the plan is to line with Habotai silk, although I might change my mind. It might be that I d…

A foray into fitting: part 1

I have taken the plunge and got myself 2 hours of 1-2-1 tutoring at sewoverit for my birthday. Given I want to make something other than skirts, and I have no sewing buddy, I felt it was time to set a pattern into professional hands and fit it for me.

I took the pattern in Lynda Maynard's Craftsy course as a model because the bodice resembles a normal fitting block quite well. I'll try to get a normal fitting block done as well, but measuring one's back is hard :|

Today I spent one and a half of my two hours in the shop. We had to do so many alterations, we didn't even finish fitting the bodice!

I came in with a muslin cut using pattern size 12, based on my bust measurement (34"), as per the recommendation in the Craftsy course. Lynda Maynard recommends to always cut the size based on your bust and adjust the rest.

Here's what we did.

Adjustments we went through, in rough order:
Front Darts:
Waist darts:
        * added 1.1cm to center front (throughout) to move…

Giveaway winners!

I can't believe it's already Saturday. Tuesday evening. Next Tuesday evening. Work has been pretty consuming over the past 10 days.

The winners are:

... drumroll....

Turkish cotton, Ginny.

The cool colours will be going to Emily C.

Now, ladies, I will do my best to contact you this week. Congratulations!

How to easily keep patterns uncut

I recently started watching Lynda Maynard's Craftsy Fitting class. It's a good class, and I will post a review when I get through my bodice adjustments. There was one very intriguing thing about this class: the pattern base she was using for alterations.

After thinking about it for a while, I realized that pattern pieces can simply be photocopied together, which will save you the trouble of tracing eveeerything.

I initially thought that an A3 size paper would be enough (at least for me), but this isn't the case. For my bodice needs, I think I could get by with an A2 photocopy - this is why this idea stood on the shelf for about a month. There are no A2 or larger photocopying facilities near Victoria.

Then this weekend I started adjusting this bodice and because it is incorrectly cut there were too many alterations to use the tissue paper. So I brought the photocopying idea back to life and realized that even if a pattern piece won't fit very well on one A3 page, it wil…

The couture something. Plus fit

I never made a couture garment but I plan to start now :-) The problem is deciding what to make.  I made several successful skirts, and a have a well fitted TnT pattern for them. If the target is couture this seems to me the best option, as at least this is a road I have walked successfully before.However, my very great desire is to make a well fitting dress. This is difficult because I have a problem with fitting tops.Getting to terms with upper body fit is my only sewing resolution for this year. The problem is the back and that I don't have eyes behind it. Or a spare set of hands. My SO has been helping somewhat but he won't go as far as hands on help. I have to thank Lynda Maynard's Craftsy class for getting his help at all: the "lines must be parallel or perpendicular to the floor" mantra was simple to explain and pretty simple to get right. Perhaps an in person sewing/fitting class would work ?To get back to the problem at hand, dear readers, I would like t…

The pursuit of couture

Back in autumn, a friend asked me to make a dress for her. While not exactly a wedding dress, it's a dress she intends when going out in the days after the wedding.  She had a very clear concept in mind.

So I started looking how how this is done. I guess one could achieve the same using:
- the Colette Macaron pattern for the upper bodice
- something like Simplicity 5006 for the skirt
- a normal pattern (any of the ones in Craftsy classes apply) for the sleeves

The I started thinking about fit. And then I started thinking about how to make everything look amazing. This is going to be a special occasion after all.

So I bought this book:

And I found it a great read. Just think of all the great things one can make. And how well they must look. And how fabulous they must make one feel.

Last year I had some success with shirts - I discovered that taking my time really paid off in terms of quality. Whereas before I was unhappy with the way my clothes looked, last year I graduated to bein…

Sew Grateful... giveaway

And a bit more (I have edited this post so many times it hurts).

Back in May, when I kind of stopped blogging due new work commitments, I had promised a proper giveaway to mark my one year of sewing. I never did that giveaway, so I'll do two today.

I'm giving away two sets of fabric. Here they are

In the warm-coloured corner, sporting funky circles and dots and measuring 2m in length is an extra wide  Turkish cotton. Around 2.20m. I bought this but then realized it wasn't me, so I'd rather see it to a new home. It was originally going to be one of those pretty 50s dresses, like the one on the latest Threads cover:

The bigger circles are approximately 3cm in diameter. It's all very pretty really, but that style just isn't me.

In the cool-coloured corner, we have two fabrics: a fashion fabric in an intriguing blue shade with various embellishments and some cream winter skirt lining. I suppose the lining could be used for something else, but it's medium weight…