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Showing posts from January, 2017

Drafting a dress - 4

I’ve been working on the sleeves for the dress. The original has short sleeves and I intended from the start to make 3/4 length sleeves. Whicht meant of course drafting those too. I am rather intrigued by the various ways you can draft sleeves. Because of that I took my time and drafted several versions of the sleeve, using 3 different drafting systems: the book Building Patterns  by Suzy Furrer (same as in her classes on Craftsy), Patternmaking for fashion design by  Helen Joseph-Armstrong and the one-piece sleeve from the Dutch Danckaerts system from the book dresses. It’s fascinating to see the different approaches and still coming to a more or less similar sleeve draft. That certainly is true for the methods used by Suzy Furrer and Helen Joseph-Armstrong. The cap of the sleeve drafted by those methods was very similar, the way to get there very different. The Danckaerts system gives a different shape for the back of the sleeve, which I know not to be good on me but I wanted to dr…

Drafting a dress - 3

What lovely comments on my posts on drafting. Based on your comments I will try to give more details on drafting the funnel neckline in another post (if I can do that without infringing copyright) and will show you how I use my sloper to check a pattern. There were other questions and I'll answer these in another post. Never feel that you might not have enough experience to comment or apologise for being late with a comment. No need!! I love to read them all. 
Today two pictures of my progress. The front now stays in place, so the change worked. 


Aweful selfie photos in a mirror, you'll get the idea. The pleats are only provisionally pinned and I will change them a bit before closing the seam. Just wanted to know if I was on the right track. 
On the inside I used silk organza on the bias cut triangle at the waist to stabilize and used a little bit at the right front to eliminate bulk for the zipper in the side seam.

Drafting a dress - 2

First I’d like to thank those of you who commented on my recent posts. I have a few very regular commenters (extra thanks!) and recently I’ve seen quite a few new names too. Welcome to my blog and please share your thoughts. In a time that blogging is regarded obsolete by some it’s nice to know this is still a lively community.Back to the story of the dress. I’ve cut and basted the dress and there was a moment of disappointment. The pleats did not form a nice fold, there is too much fabric. Worse even, the neckline was gaping a lot. So much that I don’t want to share a photo. I think the pleats are just too long. As I said, I’ve drafted this dress two years ago and I’m not sure now whether I took out the space of the darts. Well, better too long than too short. I hope that these will be fine with some manipulation.Part of the gaping is probably caused by my figure. If I would have an A or B cup it wouldn’t be so bad, but there is a bit more to cover. It would be fine if I could put on…

Drafting a dress

In case you wonder if I’m not doing any pattern drafting any more, making patterns from my magazines more, the answer is that I’m definitely doing more pattern drafting too. Sometimes it’s just easy to take a pattern from a magazine. I usually take my sloper to compare the pattern draft, which already helps to get a better fit from these magazine patterns.

But I love to draft myself too.
There are a lot of styles and ideas that I want to try in drafting. Some are ideas from pictures that I have found on the internet. Those I usually pin on Pinterest (I have inspiration boards per category of garments). Other ideas come from the many books I have collected on drafting and there are a lot of things to try. I want to try things that won’t be a garment for myself, just for the technique. So if you’re more interested in posts on drafting, there will be posts on that too.
My next project is a dress inspired by a picture from the internet. It’s a Ralph Lauren design.

To be very honest, I’ve…

Knip mode dress

The last of the three unfinished objects is a dress I started in the last week of December. In the same spirit as the Burda challenge Marianne from Foxgloves and Thimbles started a Knip Mode challenge to sew more from her Knip mode magazines. I don’t have as many of those as I have of Burda magazines, having had a sort of love/hate relation with the magazine. I loved them around 2009/2010 when they had some really good and original designs. Since then I’ve occassionally bought the magazine as mostly their styles did not attract my attention but I must say they are improving. I must even confess that browsing through the issues I have there are quite a few patterns I want to try and I took up the challenge (again without fixed rules) and will try to sew at least 6 items from other magazines than Burda. This dress is not very original, but it suited me for the fabric I had. It’s a mix-and-match pattern with several skirt and collar/neckline variations. I used a different skirt variation…

A lesson learned

This is the second of my three ufo’s from last year. I showed the start and interfacing of it at the start of December. My last post on it is dated December 18 and then I said I hoped to complete it within a week, unless I would make a Christmas dress. Well, I made the Christmas dress and started other things in the meantime too. Somehow I was just not too pleased with it. I tried it on this week and first of all cut off the extra length I had added to make a longer jacket possible. Not good on me, I like my jackets shorter, I’ve yet to find a longer style jacket that I like on me. I tried it on again and still was not satisfied with it. It felt too big, even when it was made from the same base pattern that I used for my previous jackets that I drafted myself and that fit perfectly. I realized that using a fabric with stretch would feel very different in a jacket. I’ve made ponte-knit jackets before but they behaved, especially after using interfacing on them, almost like a woven. I …

A week of finishing ufo’s

In the last few days I’ve been finishing 3 projects. All started in 2016 and still lingering around for one reason or another.
The first one to show here is a lace bra. My lingerie drawer has been in need for new items for quite a while now and I’ve been trying to get my bra pattern right again. I had a problem with fitting and just couldn’t get it right (obviously my body changed a bit). When I read the blog post How to add volume to your bra cup by Norma Loehr from Orange Lingerie it dawned on me that this could be the answer to the problem. And its was. I had been making my upper cup longer but what I needed more was some extra room in the cup itself.

I’m ever so pleased that the lace in this bra is quite symmetrical, except for the center front (bridge). I did not want to insert a seam there with this lace.

The only reason this bra was unfinished for several weeks was the fact that I missed the right colour shoulder strap. Basically it’s a staple colour, but I am short on a few s…

A top with lots of drape

Having done a proper review of this top, I almost forgot to post about it on the blog. Thanks Nancy for reminding me through your comment.The top has a lot of drape and because of that I don’t know yet whether this will be a favorite or not. I’m used to more fitting clothes. Still I was attracted to this pattern and “had” to make it. It’s from the January 2017 issue of Burda. Again I compared to my sloper but have to remember it’s different for knit fabrics. I could have used a size smaller. Being so wide it’s not a real problem.I found this fiddly to make with the double shoulder parts and the binding at the neckline. At the point where the shoulder pieces and neckline meet, there are a lot of fabric layers creating a bump. With the experience I have now I would have done it differently and have made the back with a cut on facing. Also I would serge the shoulder pieces on the inside, thus eliminating another layer. Burda’s instructions tell you to fold the seams on the inside and the…

Audrey Hepburn - Givenchy exhibition

If you are in The Netherlands in the next few months or live here, don't miss the Audrey Hepburn - Givenchy exhibition in The Hague. Lovely exhibition with beautiful garments, a lot of them worn by Audrey Hepburn. Combined with photos and video of the films showing her wearing them.  Also some that would be very wearable today. 
Just a few phone photos to share, doesn't show the beauty of them.

Happy new year!

I wish all of you a very happy and creative 2017!
I’m a bit late but have made an overview of the items sewn in 2016.

Not a lot of garments, I’ve had more productive years. A few things never made it to the blog, but that won’t be more than about 5 items. A skirt and pair of pants for my daughter and the odd t-shirt. Taking into account that I moved twice in 2016 it’s not too bad. My closet needs an update on some items though.
Of course there are favorites but there were no real wadders. If I’ve sewn them and thrown them away, I’ve forgotten by now.
I don’t make a list of what I plan to do this year. In general I just want to sew more, either from patterns or self-drafted. There are a few things in my head but everything is subject to change and of course the spur of the moment. Speaking of which: this is a top from Burda’s January issue, bought on Friday, traced the same evening and made (mostly) on January 1. More details in another post.