lundi 26 mars 2012

The Hem-isphere challenge part two

Hiya, how's it going? It's been raining heavily all week long and the other day I didn't have a car but I had to go out, I was shivering and my feet -horror!- were soaking wet by the time I arrived back home so imagine what a nice surprise I had when I found Zoe's latest package in my mailbox!
Inside were the most awesome mother-of-pearl buttons, lace and fabric ever! Seriously, not only are the colour and print wonderful but it's so light and soft it feels like Liberty.

So this time the topic was chosen by Zoe and she came with this great idea: la Parisienne :) This immediately brought back fond memories since it's the name of a bakery where my mama would buy my birthday cakes when I was young. Sigh, nougatine, marzipan, chocolate and whipped cream... But I digress, of course I wasn't to use this for our challenge^^.
The thing is, I've rarely been to Paris and mainly when I was quite young -everyone was dressed like Robert Smith!- so my references regarding this city and its inhabitants come mainly from movies, songs and celebrities. To me Parisiennes are Catherine Deneuve, Brigitte Bardot, Bernadette Lafont, Anna Karina...

...and above all, the embodiement of French class, easy glamour and overall cuteness, Sylvie Vartan! Actually she was born in Bulgaria but she became a very successful singer in France and has represented it abroad ever since.

She wore a lot of candy colours, white lace/broderie anglaise and stripes and peaked in the 60's and 70's so I tried to reflect her style in these eras in my package to Zoe: some crepe-like striped fabric, a fun pattern and some faceted buttons.

I forgot to take a pic AGAIN so thanks Zoe!

As for Zoe's inspiration you can read all about it in this post, I'm thrilled with what she gave me and I hope I can make something that will come up to her excellent idea for this challenge! See you later for the results :)

vendredi 23 mars 2012

Ship ahoy!

I got Zoe-fied! Seriously cyber hanging out with her will do that to you:

You'll buy nautical themed fabric even though it's upholstery and you're nearly broke from buying a damn golden anchor last week:

I swear, when the bank statement arrives at the end of the month I'll forward it to her^^.
Now onto the dress's facts: the bodice is from the bridesmaid bubble dress from the March 2011 Burda mag, I shouldn't have shortened it since I had to add a 1" fabric "belt" to make up for it (see third pic) and the skirt is a simple dirndl. I was attracted first to the boatneck -wink!- which seemed fitted for the fabric but then I realised the back V would give my winged girl tattoo some much needed love since I never wear halternecks. Still I slightly reduced the depth of the V so that I could wear a regular bra underneath. I can't believe we're supposed to make curtains out of this awesome fabric, the blue tone and the print are fantastic and it's not stiff at all, it weighs like linen!
I'd like to try this pattern with some short, cap sleeves, I think it would look really nice with the back décolleté and I may just have the right fabric for this project, I can feel another sleepless night coming! Have a nice weekend, see you!

mercredi 21 mars 2012

A pretty dress

That's all I was aiming for! So I picked a spring flower print cotton, some white daisy trim and my beloved vintage Advance pattern and here's what I got:

Right clic on the pic then open in a new page to see the trim better!

Yep, my garden is a mess

It's the same pattern as the Christmas dress I showed you earlier in the month, I like that the bodice is cut on the bias -it definitely gives ease- and the skirt has 12 darted panels which make it hang quite neatly IMO. I didn't put the neckline ties because this simple detail pushed the dress into little girl territory and instead I prefered to emphasize the front yoke with the daisy trim. I've tried to bust my stash notion recently so I'm putting trims, ric rac and appliqués on everything^^.
See you!

mardi 20 mars 2012

A typical bi-day outfit or why I love sewing

So today as is often the case, I've had the morning free and I'm working later which means I'll wear two variations of the same outfit, one to go walking and shopping and the other for more professional purposes. Here's the freetime version:

My eternal me-made denim shorts paired with a new top, the I've-almost-tamed-that-damn-fit version of New Look 6808 that I managed to squeeze in a yard of quilting cotton bought on sale. Even though I forget to take pics of them I've actually made a few of these tops and I like to add little changes from one to the other. For instance here I've bound the neckline and sleeves with navy bias topstitched in white and I've put a little bow on the side. I'm glad I found this fabric because it's super cute with its pink and blue confetti print and also because it was a real bargain since it went from 19€ to 6€ a yard -yes, that shop has crazy prices but fortunately there are plenty others which are much more affordable where I live :)

Close-up of the fabric and details and maybe a hint of the side handpicked zipper

Back to the outfit, as you can see it's pretty laid back and nice to wear in the current summer. Now for the teaching version, well I'll put on some jeans, pumps and I'll bring a pale yellow cardigan and that's it:

I LOVE my dazed face on this one, you can tell my baby cat was acting the fool behind the window^^

I don't think I have to ramble on and on about why I love sewing so much, obviously it's just too excellent to spend the entire day in stuff you've made yourself! Have a nice week and see you soon!

lundi 12 mars 2012

I got awarded!

Indeed I received a Versatile Blogger Award from the amazing Jeyco, OMG if you haven't checked her blog already you must go, she's beyond talented, the dresses and coordinates she makes are incredibly gorgeous! Thank you again for this award Jeyco!
Here are the rules for this award: add the VBA badge to the blog (since I have no idea how to do it I'll pass on this^^), list 7 facts about you and then give the award to 15 bloggers -don't forget to tell them.
So 7 very random things about me:
- my favourite flowers are peonies
- I love eating (no meat!) and drinking so I often need to go on a quick diet if I want to keep wearing the clothes I make :)
- I have never worked a steady job, I'm literally allergic to routine
- since I live in a small and remote place I love going abroad every year and seeing other cultures, landscapes and weather
- my favourite fabrics are cotton and rayon
- I don't watch much TV, only the news and the French version of the game Going for Gold
- I've been a Hello Kitty fan all my life!
Now I found 8 very interesting bloggers whom I haven't given any awards to yet, so there you go:
Sewing Through the Motions
Adventures in Adventuring
Carly makes stuff
House of Pinheiro
Invisible Flower
Is That Sew?
Petticoats and Peplums
See you!

mardi 6 mars 2012

Navy Ceylon dress

Finally, my first Colette pattern! I waited for eons before buying it but in the end I couldn't resist this beauty with its low waist, full skirt, cute bust gathers and heart neckline and puffy little sleeves:

I waited notably because I knew I would have a lot of adjustements to make to have a decent garment but the good news is I'm seriously happy with how the dress turned out :)
So let's see how I got the best out of that Ceylon! First I don't have a classic, hourglass figure -I'm more of a bloc actually- and second my sway back problem is getting more and more visible therefore I needed to redraft the waist pieces. Indeed when I tried on my size 6 muslin 1) I looked awful and 2) there were lines running from the waist side to the front pulling the fabric in a most horrid manner. I cut both waist pieces in two along the waistline and lengthened them by 1cm before straightening the very curvy outer lines: these operations helped me with the "blocky" body problem. To accomodate my swayback issue I added an extra centimetre in the centre of the front piece while I removed one at the back, going back to the original back centre length:

These operations solved my main fitting problems but I still had some work to do:
- I shortened the back yoke piece by 2.5" to get rid of fabric bulking;
- I lowered the neckline by 5/8";
- I redrafted the shoulder yokes to make them a little smaller around the neck;
- I shortened the sleeve heads by 1".
Phew^^! Now here's the dress:

I LOVE it! Not only is it a flattering design but it's very comfortable, I used some navy bedsheet so it's light and soft, I didn't even complain when I had to sew the 16 buttonholes and their little heart shaped buttons:

And it helped me in my stash-busting mission since I used some polka dot remnant and old pinkish lace for the inside:

I won't sleep until I've made another one! Have a nice week, see you!

vendredi 2 mars 2012

My Christmas dress

In March, why not^^ Well I hadn't had the opportunity of taking pics of it until today hence the late post. After seeing and falling in love with Camelias and Crinolines' Christmas dress last year I got totally obsessed with poinsettias fabric and I desperately wanted to sew myself a vintage dress out of it. So imagine how I felt when I came across this on etsy:

It has red AND pink poinsettias, roses, holy, buds, pine cones and even peonies, it's light as lawn and I had 5 yards of it for $5 :) I used my favourite Advance pattern and here's what I got:

It's such a fun dress to wear, even though it's Christmas-themed I don't think it shows too much, especially when accessorised with simple, natural accessories:

See you!