25 August 2014

Purple Chiffon V1102

I love this PATTERN! I have officially found the pattern that I feel is me. Everything about it makes me so utterly happy: the open back, the back ties, the high neck, boat neck, empire waist, flowy skirt. I made this dress for a wedding I was attending and it is my first time sewing with a chiffon fabric. Maybe sewing on a deadline isn't a great time to pick a new-to-me fabric that is notoriously slippy and difficult to sew with? Maybe? Nahhhh....

The chiffon is 100% polyester. I didn't splurge on it. But I adored the pattern and bought it as soon as it went on sale. Since the fabric was sheer and the pattern has a full lining, I didn't want the seams to show through to the front so I decided to underline all the chiffon with a white cotton I had in my stash as well as fully line it with a light grey rayon lining.

Look at that bow - LOOK AT IT!!! I'm in love! So much in love. I left the bow unlined as I felt it would be nicer with just the chiffon.

And since the fabric had more droop to it than my last version in 100% cotton I added elastic to the waist seam to keep things more accentuated. Basically I wanted a little added boost for the ladies and to give myself some definition around the middle instead of blob shaped.

I decided to use a simple gathered skirt once again over a circle skirt but cut a high-low hem line because they are my favourite. I cut the lining to mid-thigh length to showcase the chiffon on top and its see-through qualities. Gotta show a little leg amiright ladies? In a classy way of course! (ps - look at that skirt...it has some serious flow!)

To showcase how well the bodice fits across my chest and a little of the arm scythe. So much more comfortable to wear a well fitted garment.

The fabric has a slight crepe texture to it but look at those beautiful colours! All seams are completed on the serger and this fabric is cheap cheap cheap so it frayed something fierce. Ugh. It won't last too long which is sad but it fulfilled its purpose of dancing its heart out at my friends wedding (She made her own wedding dress - it was stunning!)


Pattern: Vogue 1102
Size: 14
Fabric: Polyester Chiffon
  • Twisted a Wedge from the arm scythe into the waist darts
  • Gathered skirt with hi-low hem
  • Removed an inch from the centre back bodice for better lower back coverage
  • Added elastic to the waist seam
  • Omitted the facings and only used a full lining
  • Invisible zipper and no hook and eye (too lazy to put one in)

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22 August 2014

White&Grey Easy Summer M6955

Summer lovin - happens so fast! Too bad I'm too lazy to bust out the GOOD camera. So you're welcome to peruse these lovely iphone photos. Great quality eh? Good ol self timer app!

Fabricland had a sale on all of the cotton sateen fabrics and at $4/metre I couldn't go wrong. Lovely prints too! I bought 4 different cotton sateen's and immediately started scheming what I wanted to make. During a recent $1.99 sale on the McCall's website I ordered 10 or so patterns, one of which was M6955: a Laura Ashley Easy project. 
I adored the racer back of the dress and figured the cotton sateen would be perfect for the silhouette of the dress. The fabric would also help the dress to feel snug against my body but still provide me with lots of breathing room with the stretch content. Yay!

I made a fair few adjustments to the pattern. I cut out a size 10 because I wanted to accommodate for the stretch of the fabric and opted to finish my dress with binding instead of bias tape to reduce bulk and make my life 100% easier. This type of finish is the quickest for me while using my serger. the more projects I can complete using only my serger the better! I busted out this dress in >3 hours total from cutting to wearing. 

Back to those alterations I was talking about. After completing my Flora bodice, Belladone Bodice, and V1102 Bodice I began to notice how the flat pattern bodice needed to look for it to fit my body shape better. As soon as I cut out this flat pattern, it looked nothing like I knew it should to fit me. It would fit terribly straight from the envelope. So I starting slicing into the neckline and taking out wedges as I knew the neckline would gape - I then evened out the curve of the neckline. I did this to both the front and back necklines. I also took wedges out from the shoulder strap and turned the straps inwards to fit my narrow shoulders better (bodice shoulders always fall off my shoulders - they never will again!). Next I twisted out a dart from the arm scythe in to the waist darts. By the end my tissue pattern pieces were covered in tape missing all sorts of chunks and pieces. And finally, no dress is complete without the addition of in-seam pockets! I really should have used a lining fabric for those instead of the cotton sateen as they are quite bulky and make the circle skirt stick out across my hips.

The only changes I'll make for my next version of this would be to lengthen the bodice by 1/2" so the waist seam sits a little more comfortable when I move and lengthen the skirt by 1" and opt for 3/4 or 1/2 circle skirt instead of the full circle (which really likes to catch that breeze). Other than that, I put an invisible (or not so invisible) zipper in the centre back, finished my binding edges at the back neck above the zipper (and refused to put a hook and eye out of sheer laziness), and turned and stitched my hemline. The entire dress (besides the darts and zipper insertion) is finished on my serger - Yay for quick dresses! And YAY for easy summer cotton dresses!


Pattern: M6955
Size: 10
Fabric: Cotton Sateen
  • Removed a wedge out of the front neckline to reduce gaping
  • Removed 1" from the shoulder length
  • Took out a dart from the arm scythe and turned it into the bust darts
  • Removed a wedge out of the back neckline to reduce gaping
  • Finished the edges with binding instead of a facing to reduce thickness.
  • Added in-seam pockets to the circle skirt.
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04 August 2014

Painted Ponte - Manequim Oct 2013 #393

Sometimes you see a pattern and you just have to make it. This pattern from the October 2013 Manequim magazine pattern was one of them. The pieced bodice was interesting, and I adored their sample dress with the leather piping along the seams. I wish I could replicate that dress exactly.

When I decided to make the dress I knew I would have to make some changes. One major change was using a Ponte knit fabric instead of a woven. The pattern came in size 38 only, I topically make a size 42, and sans drafting skills I didn't know how to grade the pattern so took the easy route and make it up in a stretchy fabric. 

The only thing I forgot when switching to a knit was that could have cut the back pieces on the fold. But with the front bodice piecing, extra seam lines don't detract from the design of the dress. 

The second change I decided on was opting for an A-line skirt instead of the figure hugging option in the magazine. I knew if I made that exact dress I would never wear it as everybody would ask me when my due date was (....I'm not pregnant). I like to avoid setting myself up for those types of scenarios folks! I used the skirt from the Belladone dress which is my new favourite!

The bodice has a one piece facing which I lengthened to below my bust line as there is little I hate more than seeing the line of facing showing through across the top of my bust. simple modification and adds extra "hold" for the ladies. I like the snug feel when wearing Ponte knits but also the comfort that the Ponte isn't showing every lump and bump. That ain't pretty folks!  

I actually sewed this bodice up around Christmas time. Christmas in canada is freezing, so go figure I'd try sewing a sleeveless bodiced dress right? I make great decisions. But once I'd pieced the bodice together I put it in my unfinished project basket and it got lost in the vortex. I only refound it while moving my sewing space all downstairs. I fell instantly back in love with the painted Ponte fabric and the pieces bodice and decided to finish it. 1 hour later it was done. 

Isn't it funny how you gain and lose motivation? This bodice sat alone for 6 months unloved and one whimsical day I pick it up and finish it all in an hour?? Funny how things work. But it's all good because now that we're finally seeing some summer here It's all suns out guns out!

And finally let's talk about this stunning fabric shall we? I found it at fabricland, it most certainly is a polyester Ponte Roma fabric, but it has the most lovely painted flowers on it. Not just appear to be painted on, actually painted on. If you pick really really hard the paint can come off! it's such a cool fabric! I'm glad I buy fabric in 3m chunks as I now have some extra I might use for shoulders or sleeves of tshirt a. It's so lovely I want to use every scrap! I find of wish is purchased more as it's comfortable to wear. 

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