Saturday, May 28, 2011

June Challenge

I've joined Stephanie's June Challenge. The goal is to sew four summer dresses during the month of June. Being in the Southern Hemisphere, where we are well on our way to colder weather, I've changed it slightly to sewing four winter dresses. I'm hoping that having a deadline will be the kick up the backside I need to actually use the patterns I've bought and some of the fabric from my ever growing stash. I am usually good with deadlines (by this I mean I leave everything until the last second and then scramble to finish it on time, but I always manange to finish). I have a fair idea of what I want to make but will probably change my mind halfway through.

Advance 8270

I've had this pattern and two different fabrics to use for ages but I haven't worked up the courage to try it yet. The first fabric is a heavy cotton knit with one way stretch. I haven't really sewn any knits before so I'm approaching this with a feeling of trepidation.

The blue is a merino wool knit that is really stretchy, which could be a problem.

I would love to sew Butterick 8459 (on the right) in a bright red. With some of the main fabric stores in the city having been destroyed/damaged by the earthquake my fabric choices might be pretty limited, so I may not be able to find the fabric I want. I've made the full skirted version of Butterick 8459 twice before so this time I want to make the slim skirt and use some thicker wintery fabric.

I bought the pattern on the left recently because I am obsessed with peplums (if you click to make it bigger you can see the peplum more clearly). I would quite like to make it in a solid colour, maybe a navy blue or grey.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Back in Black

Thanks for your comments on my last post. It was interesting reading. Unfortunately, blogger deleted some but I did get to read them before that.

Butterick 9405

When sewing I tend to use fabrics I think are pretty (florals), not practical (black). I used to scoff at the idea of sewing 'basics'. I didn't want to waste my time sewing boring things. It became clear this was somewhat of a problem when I briefly considered pairing a top covered with tiny pink roses, with a bright red poppy print skirt. I decided I needed to make some neutral clothes that would actually go with all the clashing separates I have made.

Blouse Butterick 9405 close up

I made this blouse using Butterick 9405, from 1959. It's made of black broderie anglaise with vintage flower buttons. I realise that its not exactly plain but I am ridiculous this is my idea of neutral.

Pleated skirt

I also made a black pleated skirt out of drill cotton. It has buttons down the back because the zip I had broke just before I was going to put it in.

Sorry about the bad pictures. Black is hard to photograph.

Butterick 9405 + self-drafted skirt

I wore both the blouse and the skirt today. I actually really liked this outfit when I put it on but the photo makes me wonder about that. I also remembered why I don't wear black very often...every stray bit of fluff or cotton within a one mile radius seems to instantly stick to the skirt. I should've just stuck with the florals.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Sewing Lingerie Part One

I've been reading 'Sewing Lingerie that Fits' by Karen Morris. In the introduction she talks about how many people that sew their own clothing don't sew lingerie. I found this really interesting because I think she's right. I read a lot of sewing blogs and while a few of them have tackled lingerie the vast majority seem to stick to clothes only. I wondered if it was because lingerie was too hard, but I've seen these women sew difficult garments like winter coats and jeans so I don't think that's it.
I'm curious. If you sew have you sewn lingerie? Why/why not? Is it something that you're interested in?

Simplicity 2692

I think I've mentioned before that I want to start sewing lingerie. This is for several reasons. Most of the lingerie that I like is ridiculously expensive and I'm not really in a position to spend that much on underwear. I'm sick of the poor quality of fabric and construction that you get with cheap underwear. I try to avoid buying things made in countries that have questionable human rights records. This is relatively easy with clothes. Most of my clothing is second hand or made by me. I very rarely buy anything new these days but underwear (and hosiery) is probably one of the only things I do. I do own some vintage lingerie; slips, girdles and long line bras but I wouldn't want to buy second hand knickers.

I have a few patterns and plenty of vintage lace and notions to use up. I thought it might be interesting to do a series on sewing lingerie. While I probably have more of a vintage style lingerie bent, I'm also interested in sewing comfortable, everyday type underwear. My goal is to sew some french knickers and soft bras out of silk, some regular cotton boyshorts, sew a vintage style longline bra and sew a swimsuit (I know it's not really lingerie but it uses similar techniques).

I know they're terribly 80s but I think I could make them look vintage

Some links that may be of interest:

Frilly Bits has instructions on how to draft your own french knickers/tap pants. I don't think there are instructions on how to sew the pattern up, so if anyone is interested just let me know and I can do a tutorial on it. I'd also recommend looking at their other posts because they make the most beautiful vintage inspired lingerie.

Zoe has a great tutorial on how to make undies with a serger.

New Vintage Lady is pretty much my hero of lingerie making. Check out the foundation garments page on her site. She has made everything from her own garter belt to tap panties to crinolines to mens underwear.

Threadbanger has an episode dedicated to making womens underwear. The pattern used in the episode is here.

Gertie's New Blog For Better Sewing has a tutorial on how to make a vintage inspired half slip.

If you need some inspiration or would rather buy lingerie than make it, Ohhh Lulu makes gorgeous bras, panties, rompers, swimwear and camisoles and sells them in her Etsy shop.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Miss Mod

Simplicity 1411 Jacket

I finally finished my Summer Coat. Only problem is that it's now too cold to wear it. I guess I will have to wait for Spring.

I tried some of the suggestions you guys left me about how to get the dye stains out and they worked. Thanks so much to everyone who left comments. If it hadn't been for you, this would still be sitting in the unfinished pile in my sewing room.

The pattern is one I've made before, Simplicity 1411. It's actually a 50s pattern but I think it looks more Mod than New Look.

Simplicity 1411

I think I need to put a little snap just behind the last button to keep it from gaping open.

Mod Style

This is my ridiculous 60s model pose. Can you tell I'm trying not to laugh?

Simplicity 1411 Lining

The lining is tiny pink and white stripes because I sure do love pretty linings (and it was only $1 a metre).

Lining Fabric

Simplicity 1411 Back

The collar does sit properly at the back. I just forgot to check it before I took the photo.

I'm so happy with the way it turned out. I love it. Now, if only we had some fine weather so I could wear it.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Purple haze all in my brain

It's finally getting cool enough to start breaking out my coat collection. This is one of my favourites. It's a crimplene dream with purple and white stripes. I'm pretty sure it's 60s. It has a Mod sort of feel to it. I found it in a tiny op-shop on the West Coast for $5. I bought the purple tights last week so decided to channel my inner Violet Beauregarde today.

60s Purple Coat

I've been so busy at uni I haven't had much time to do any sewing lately but hopefully I'll be able to show you something by the end of the week.