Monday, February 28, 2011

Halloween flashback and peplums

I was a little ambitious this past Halloween and made costumes for everyone in our family. Four out of five included a jacket or vest of some sort and I really enjoyed putting them together. I was most happy with the vests I made for my daughters, who are four, and wanted to be "fairy princess butterflies". I translated this into lots of tulle and sparkles (and wings, of course.)

I loved the look of McCalls 4887 mainly for the vests (the little dresses and skirts could easily be made without the pattern.) Below is the picture on the envelope:

I chose a pink brocade for each girl and was so happy with the results.

My sister kept asking me to make an adult-sized one for her. She kept asking until I realized she was serious.

I think she liked the peplum and the romantic feel of the brocade.

So I finally decided to try to make her something similar (minus the wings.)

I'm definitely not able to draft my own pattern for something like this so I went looking for a jacket pattern that featured a peplum (I figured a jacket would be more useful than a vest.)
I found several that I liked, including McCalls 5980 (shown above.) I still may try this one out even though it's very similar to the one I bought.

In the end I decided to try Vogue 8601. It had a more romantic rounded feel to it...though I'm not sure if that is technically considered to be a peplum or if they're just called tails because there is a slit up the back? Erica at Erica B.'s DIY Style made this jacket some time ago using a brown tweed and it looks beautiful in the photos!

I also found a very pretty brocade with pale yellow flowers and a soft teal lining. I couldn't decide between the two buttons at the store so I brought both home.

I think these are the better fit.

I cut and sewed a muslin (no pictures due to the absurd hour that I finished it) and only changed the sleeve length (though the shoulders may be a tiny wide but I'm not yet comfortable enough to alter that part of the pattern.)

So on to cutting the brocade and lining. Wish me luck!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Vogue 1153 and Negroni Update

I'm still here and still sewing! I finally got a chance to finish Vogue 1153. It's such a cute little dress (and I do mean little!) I'm on the tall side so I planned to wear this as a tunic rather than lengthen the pattern. I don't wear that many dresses and I thought this would look great over black leggings.

I chose a pretty purple floral - I don't have much purple in my wardrobe and I really liked this one.

A little purple ghost appeared in my kitchen as I was taking photos:)

It came together quickly (I serged all the edges that the pattern suggested rather than attempting to hem that slippery fabric! )

Some of the details got a little lost in the print - like the ribbon and buttons at the waist.

It's a very cute dress/top but I've already passed it on to my sister. She loved it and I don't think it flatters my body type. It was fun to sew though!

And on to Negroni...
Here are some shots of the muslin I made following along with Peter's Negroni sew-along. I had so much fun making this and I learned some new techniques. I can now check off my list: flat-felled seams, button holes (yes button holes terrified me!), and just a general attention to detail and process that I was lacking before.

The muslin fits OK though it may be on the snug side. I have to wait for my husband to get back from vacation to recheck the fit. I finally found the right fabric for the final shirt while shopping at one of my favorite quilt shops.

This red plaid has such a nice feel to it...on the lighter side and very soft. Perfect for spring.

So that's what I've been doing. I'm also in the middle of putting together a jacket (also for my sister.) The fabric is so pretty...I'll get some pictures up soon!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Vogue 1027 = Frustration!

I picked up a couple of pretty Vogue patterns from Joann's when they were on sale ($3.99 each!) and decided to try out V1027. It's such a pretty dress and I love the longer length.

It looks like such a flattering cut, very feminine. It looks like a wrap dress but the bodice is pleated and attached to the skirt. The tie is also attached at the back and sides.
I really like the fabric - a nice weight and feel to it.

It looks pretty good on the dress form.

Too bad I can't figure out this mess in front. When I put this dress on and tie a knot in front it looks like a crooked mess! I've double-checked to make sure everything is centered and nothing is caught in the seams. I think I may have cut it a size too big and it just cinches funny in front. I opted not to put in the elastic at the waist band (as many others suggested on Pattern Review) so I wonder if that would help to distribute the extra fabric more evenly? I was too lazy/annoyed to put it on and take a picture but I'll do so after I fiddle with it a little.

I'd like to finish it up so I can move on to this...
I've seen a few versions of this around the web and can't wait to get started! I've also been making progress on Peter's "Men's Shirt Sew-Along". We're almost done with putting the muslin together.

I'm off to find my seam ripper!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

A Shifty One

Oh, this one nearly drove me nuts. I had planned on an easy re-do of this long floral dress (80's maybe?) I had plenty of fabric to work with though there were some tears and stains to work around.

The fabric was on the thin side and very "flowy".

And a little crinkly even after ironing with a steam iron - which is a nice texture but it makes it hard to work with! It shifted all over the place and nearly drove me crazy.

A few repairs here and there were called for. This one fell right in the middle of one of the front seams.

I had a tunic in mind rather than a dress, this hits about mid-thigh.

I love pin tucks and they look nice with this type of fabric. The front looks a teeny bit funny because I had to leave the original seams in place and sew tucks over them which created a bit of bulk but not too bad. There's a zipper up the left side.

A pretty tie in back gives it a nice shape.

Overall I like the outcome but I don't think I'll be hunting for this type of fabric anytime soon. It was so slippery and unwieldy!

Another one done out of the pile. Only three (?) left! I may need to go thrifting soon...