Tuesday, April 27, 2010


Just in time, I only have to handstitch the hem. No pictures on me yet, but wanted to share. How frustrating to make such a dress in so little time, of course things went wrong (mostly my own error), but it’s ready.

Thursday, April 22, 2010


If you want to see the dress, wait a few days and  read the next blog ;)

There is progress but it’s going slow. I had “cold water fear” as the Dutch expression is to construct the back with zipper and lining. Not done that very often and while busy on the front of the dress this kept going on in my mind. Time to search for some information and practise. The information for sewing the lining in a sleeveless dress I found on the Threads dvd (issue 95). I combined these instructions with the tutorial for a facing for an invisible zipper from Els (sewing diva’s blog).

I have taken pictures for my own reference of the construction, so I might write my own tutorial in the near future.

This is the result from combining these two techniques. I used two different lining fabrics on the inside, while this will be a facing from the dress fabric in the real dress.

Not perfect, the right side in the picture is the second side I made, it’s better than the first one.
Els gave instructions to check before securing the end of the seam, pretty obvious I will have to follow that instruction next time!

Clear that the second time was neater on the inside too (aweful lining fabric to work with, I’m happy I have better quality for my dress.

Well, no excuses any more, there is a bit of the evening left, I’m going to work on the dress a bit.

PS: There are links to instructions for lining a sleeveless dress on the sewing tutorials site here.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The Marion suit

Remember the post about pattern sheets from last week where I showed a picture from the Marion magazine with pencil marks on the instructions? They made me wonder whether the pattern was actually made. My mother confirmed that she used the pattern in 1966 to attend a family wedding and she gave me the picture that shows her in it. Isn’t is great to see this? I just took out one of the old 60’s magazines to compare, and a week later you have the original pattern picture and a version that was made by my mother. What a coincidence.


No update on my dress yet, it’s coming along nicely.

And Gwensews: Melissa just posted a lot of information on internatinal magazines, including a link where to get Knip Mode. It’s the English site of the company I was going to advise.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Dress muslin


After finishing the muslin, I was already quite happy with the result. There were a few tweaks necessary (no surprise), but not too many. The main issue was the neckline, which is already clear in Knip Mode’s picture too. The center front was gaping. It was not to difficult to change that. My pictures are from an already altered muslin, and I need to take in another centimeter.

My sewing teacher helped me fit the back yesterday evening, and she made the darts a bit wider and longer. There was a little gaping at the armhole, (still to be seen in my picture), which has been taken care of too. The changes have been transferred to the paper pattern, I’m ready to cut in the real fabric, which I bought yesterday. You will be surprised by the color, not one of my defaults. It’s a plain color, but not yellow (as some suggested for accessories with my artsy polka dot blouse, but I really never wear yellow, not my color at all).

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Inspired by Melissa

Yesterday late in the afternoon I was skimming the blog posts in Google reader, heavily frustrated by trying to buy a dress for an event I will attend in two weeks time. No luck in that! I’ll have to sew one.

The past week there had been less time for sewing than hoped for, so the muslin I intended to make was not even cut yet, and I was not too sure of the suitability of the pattern I had in mind.

I read quickly through Melissa’s review of last months Knip modes and then there was a lightbulb moment when I read this sentence: “And as long as they keep producing these origami dresses, I will keep on loving them”. At that moment I realized I had bought the November issue with a dress I loved, but at the time thought I wouldn’t have an occasion to wear. It too has some folding, which Knip Mode has done a lot in their patterns recently. And like Melissa, I like that.

I almost immediately shut down my computer, took the issue from the shelve and traced the pattern.

These are the pieces for the front, looks pretty complicated, but it isn’t that difficult. The drafting is very good, all pieces fit very well together.

The muslin in its current state, back and skirt still need to be attached.

And apart from the importance of fitting, the muslin shows something that can be changed: the pleat that goes to shoulder level is very narrow at the end and there is a lot of bulk in the seam there. I think I will stop the pleat a bit more down the neckline so there won’t be a very narrow pleat at the top, and less bulk to deal with.

Closing this post with a few inpsiration pictures from this November issue.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Quick top


This was a very quick top to make. I used the pattern from March Knip Mode no. 101 in a piece of white cotton jersey more or less as a muslin. I have a piece of printed fabric that I don’t want to waste on a pattern that I’m not sure of. I like the front and neckline of the top, but are not sure if I repeat the gathered ‘sleeve’. I should have added a bit of space in the bust area, but this will do at home on a hot summer day (whenever that may be).

In construction I didn’t follow Knip Mode’s instructions on some points, as in the magazine they use unfinished seams on the outside for the front part. Like Burda often does, there are unclear pictures of this. Don’t know why the neckband is not cut on the fold, it only gives an extra seam which is completely unneccessary. Just changed the order of working to a to me more logical approach.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Blouse ‘artsy polka dots’ finished

My first top in Faye’s “Spring Month of Top” sew along is finished. And I’m quite happy with the result. Though I had the association with a spotted dog a few days ago, that is gone now, and I’m quite happy with it. I use the expression ‘artsy polka dots' now that Gwensews used in her comment.

The blouse is lacking one button, but that will be taken care of later this week.  The full PR review is here.

I do like the pattern, but think that the pleat will more clearly a design element when using a plain fabric. I didn’t do a proper fba, but increased from size 40 in the neck/shoulder area to 42 at the front (bottom of the armhole, this should be done to the sleeve too!) and to 44 in the hip area. There it is snug, but I will wear this tucked in, so no real problem.



Saturday, April 10, 2010

Pattern sheets

Today I had to revert to the pattern sheet of my blouse, because I had forgotten a marking on the yoke where the sleeve top should match. It reminded me of the fact that the pattern sheets are more crowded with lines since this month’s BurdaStyle  (someone else already wrote about it, forgot who, sorry). There are 4 sheets, labeled A-D now when there used to be 8 (A-H). I must say that I really didn’t notice it when tracing the pattern earlier this week, it’s still clear enough to me. Could be because in the more distant past at the time I learned sewing, the pattern sheets weren’t clear at all.

I thought it would be nice to share how pattern sheets were in the past. When I took out an old pattern sheet from a 1965 issue of Marion (a magazine like Knip mode today) I even wondered how my mother or grandmother got to sewing at all, they’re so confusing.

A pattern sheet from the April 2010 issue of BurdaStyle. Though more lines, the pattern pieces can be seen.

Burda issue from 2009, less intersecting lines.

Here’s 1984, only red and green, difficult to make out specific pattern pieces here (and how lucky women are seldom color-blind, my dh wouldn’t see the difference). And I do remember tracing wrong lines regularly at the time, usually you found that out quick enough, because it made no sense where a line was going.

Marion 1965! Only black lines and only one size. If I understand it right you could order other sizes, and of course pay for them.

Complaining about Burda’s instructions nowadays? When opening the patternsheet I noticed two measurements taken down by either my mother or grandmother for this outfit.

This drawing below was all that you got as instructions. The plus/minus indicates which lines you would have to trace for this pattern on the sheet, there’s a line drawing and a cutting layout. Nothing more. How you would put this together was entirely up to you.

Must ask my mother whether this was made and by whom, the numbers written down are for a waist and back length measurement I think. In 1965 I was only 4, so this was not for me.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Spotted dog

That’s my association now I see this fabric made up as a blouse. Didn’t have it when I bought the fabric, but now it’s there. Hope it will be ok in the end, seen together with a plain pair of pants of skirt.

I enjoyed a wonderful few hours of sewing today. I cut this blouse around 4 pm and now it’s near 11 pm and the main parts are done (and I cooked dinner and had a coffee break). The seam ripper was not used once, which is rare. Though saying this will probably make sure that I need it in the last steps.

I made the collar with stand with Pam’s instructions (links to all 3 posts on the collar can be found here). I’ve used both her instructions and the method described by David P. Coffin with succes, but Pam’s instructions are a bit easier to do, and giving good results..


The sleeve placket I made with the instructions from my old BWOF book. Some time ago I placed a small tutorial here.

If the setting in of the sleeves, making the cuffs and hemming goes as smoothly as it did today, my first top of April will be ready this weekend.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010


For once a bilingual post:


Het forum voor zelf lingerie maken heeft mij de zelflingeriemaakaward toegekend als dank je wel voor het promoten van het zelf lingeriemaken en het lingerie forum.

Wat een geweldige award, dank jullie wel! Ik voel me heel vereerd, vooral ook omdat ik recent niet erg veel aan het zelf lingerie maken gedaan heb (moet weer snel meer lingerie maken).

De foto is geplaatst (klik op de foto om naar het forum te gaan) en nu moet ik de volgende vragen beantwoorden:

Waarom maak jij lingerie?
Vooral eigenlijk omdat ik het zo enorm leuk vind om te doen. Daarnaast heb ik niet zo’n gangbare maat (75 D/E), wat betekent dat het moeilijk en duur is om een mooie en goedzittende bh te vinden.

Hoelang maak jij lingerie?
Een jaar of 8.

Waar/hoe heb je het geleerd?
Ik heb bij You and me in Zoetermeer les gehad en van Cassandra van Lijfgoed. Daarna ook van veel doen en proberen van patronen.

Waar haal jij je inspiratie vandaan?
Van wat andere maken en van de vele websites van de lingeriemerken. Zou meer willen experimenteren, maar daarvoor ontbreekt de tijd.

Waar koop jij het liefst je materialen ?
Kantje boord in Amsterdam is veruit favoriet om zelf de materialen uit te zoeken. Online koop ik wel bij Merckwaerdigh, Elingeria en Wien2002.

Nu mag ik de award weer doorgeven, het forum zal op 18 april bekend maken wie dat is.


The Dutch forum for making lingerie yourself has given me this award because of promoting lingerie sewing and promoting the forum (the forum is in Dutch).

Thank you very much for this award! I'm very honored, especially because I haven't shown a lot of lingerie recently. I should sew more lingerie soon.

Apart from placing the picture on my blog (done) I have to answer the following questions:

Why do you sew lingerie?
Mainly because I love doing it. But also I have a difficult bra size (75 D/E) and it difficult and expensive to find a beautiful, well fitting bra in that size.

How long have you been sewing lingerie?
About 8 years.

Where/how did you learn it?
I took courses from two different ladies and learned from sewing from patterns too.

Where do you get your inspiration from?
From projects made by others and from the websites of several lingerie brands. I would like to experiment more, but lack time to do that.

Where do you buy your fabric and notions?
Kantje boord in Amsterdam is my favorite store to go to and search what I want. Favorite online shops are Merckwaerdigh, Elingeria and Wien2002.

I may pass this award on to someone else, the forum committee will announce on April 18th who that will be.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Plans for April

Thank you so much for all the nice comments on my jacket. It confirms my feeling that this is a very versatile jacket and I will wear it a lot.

It looks like the sewing mojo is back and I do hope that I will have time to sew too in this month. I’m never sure how much work there will be, but for the moment I’m optimistic that I will get more sewing done than in the past months.

First I’m making a new lingerie set. Seeing Poetsie’s set this week made me take this lace and lycra from my cupboard and start this set. Obviously it is the same lace. The bra is almost finished, the advantage of a tnt pattern.

And I’ve joined the Spring month of tops blog from Faye. Great initiative and I like to challenge myself to sew at least 4 tops this month.

This is my storyboard for the first 3 tops.

The first top will be the Burdastyle blouse, with a bit less prominent collar points. the pleat on the sleeve caught my eye and I quite like the otherwise simple style of the blouse.

The Knip mode tops will be next. For the t-shirt I don’’t have a specific fabric in mind, maybe plain white. The plaid shirt is shown in the magazine like this:

I’ll make a skirt from the green/aqua linen that is left in the storyboard. Would be nice to do that this month too.

Maybe I’m too optimistic and is it too much, but one can at least aspire to something, don’t you think?