A peplum blouse in a novelty print

Hi everyone, just wanted to share my almost finished new creation and also to ask your opinions?

This blouse is something I have wanted to make for a while, because it’s got a retro, 40’s esque shape and a great feature (peplum) to help hide my worst feature (tummy) when I wear pencil shirts, and also, because it’s a novelty print that I love!

I think I’ll be making more vintage shaped garments with modern printed fabrics because I reckon it makes them really interesting and with things like peplums it stops them from looking like every other persons peplum blouse that you see around lately (damn you, current fashion trends)

So onto construction; I started with a basic bodice block that I drafted, lowered the back into a really deep “V” shape and added a 6-inch peplum which I essentially drafted as a circle skirt and lined the back split together with the bodice for the zipper, which I hand sewed in. I actually sewed the peplum on backwards(with the right side of the print facing inwards), so my seam ripper had a good time with the project.
I also made some bias from a random scrap of powder blue chiffon I had lying around and put that around the neck hole for some contrast and a nice finish.
The sleeves have been the bane of this project for me! I can’t decide what I want to make! At the moment they are just temporary mini flounce with a semi circle of the fabric, which is set in just like a regular sleeve. What I am thinking is to make a 1/2 length cuffed sleeve and finish the cuff edges off in the bias tape, but I worry that with the peplum and the busy-ness of the fabric that it may just be too many focal details and get a bit messy, so any input you may have would be well recieved.

The fabric is a nicely weighted Poly-cotton that I got for a steal on eBay and I have about a metre of it left, so I can really do anything with the sleeves as I have enough fabric.

 

What do you think? and what would you do with the sleeves?

 

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Sewing for a Teenager

My beautiful stunning 13 year old sister is growing up fast and getting really interested in clothes and boys and make-up etc., so I thought it might be fun to help her find her own style and design a dress (based on eras past, or I probably would have been bored ha).

So we looked around the web, and found some great starting points and they all seemed to lead to the Late 60′s mod look, (but without – as she put it “mr. men triangle shapes”). So we went for this shift dress with a slight nip and the waist for shape and a straight skirt with four tucks (two front, two back). and she just LOOOOVED the fabric and contrast bias (hand made using the continuous loop method)

 

It’s all hand drafted patterns (intentionally made a little large because she is shooting up and filling out very quickly), and it’s all hand sewn too. We are proud of it, even though it isn’t perfect and could fit better, it’s the first thing she has ever had a hand in making!

 

*PROUD SIS MOMENT*

 

My apologies for the terrible quality of these images, they were taken in haste on a phone!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The problem with Sizing. Vogue 8728

ImageAfter getting Vintage Vogue 8728 I was envisioning it as a gorgeous easy dress that would just come together simply and quickly and be a go-to for emergencies.

Well I suppose it did come together quickly and easily, really it was a dream to sew – the only problem is that it came together about 2 sizes too big. I mean it’s freakin’ HUGE, my shoulders are wide and even they couldn’t hold the straps on. and in the waist it’s at least 4″ too loose. And not to mention way too long!

I suppose patterns like this are why I should make a muslin, and even reading some reviews might have helped, but no I insisted on powering through and this is what I get!

 

Have a giggle at these pictures, it’s such a hot mess!

 

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So over the next day or so, out will come the seam ripper and I plan on gathering the bust more, removing some fabric at the side and shoulder seams and deepening the back darts (also maybe adding two at the shoulders because the gaping is ridiculous) and raising the hem by at least 3-5″.

 

Have you suffered any sewing disasters because of sizing and fit issues and how did you manage to pull it back to something you might like?

HELP? Decisions!

Dearest peoples of the internet, I need some help.

I found this adorable spotted Rayon in my local Textile Traders, with the sole intention of making a 1940’s day dress. I have managed to narrow it down to these two patterns, V2787 and V8728. Both patterns have their downsides and reviewing woes, but check out these pintrest boards I’ve found with others versions V8728 and v2787

 

GAH I cannot decide. Obviously, V8728 would be a lot more wearable day-to-day but on the other hand V2787 is such a special design, I will make both eventually, but this fabric will be one of them, which will it be? Which would you make??

 

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In Absentia; A TikiColada Circle Skirt

Hello!

First off, my apologies for so long of a break from the Blogosphere, SO much has been happening! But hopefully it’s all settling down now.

We have moved into a new house in lovely, quirky Mt. Lawley, it’s perfect for us and just five minutes more onto my daily commute, a worthy sacrifice to get out of the toxic environment we were in. Honestly, our last landlord actually sold our house without us even knowing! So glad to have moved on.

We also had a big angry moment at Harvey Norman over a faulty USB wifi adapter they sold us that overheated so much it actually left a blister when I yanked it out of the P.C., and they were so rude about it, refusing to refund or replace it, but we managed to get another store to replace it with something in the same price range (No way were we getting the same one again!). So I am back on the interwebs and sewing too.

Take a look at this cute Circle skirt I’ve made in a lovely rayon/cotton blend. I was so drawn to the fabric for the fact that it was Hawaiian print but in dark kind of stormy colours (hey I think the 16 year old Goth in me was happy), but the store only had 2 metres left so I was kind of stuck on what to make considering that it has an obviously directionality to it, but by creating two half cirlces and sewing them together, the flowers and scenes are only slightly sideways on the side seams, so I can totally live with that hahah and I decided on a shorter length for two reasons; 1. Limited fabric and 2. Summer here is really kicking in, I don’t need extra fabric to lug around in the heat!

(Please excuse my flip flops (As I said it’s too damn hot here))

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It is a little shorter than I’d like, but the summer is here, so I will probably be happy of that fact soon enough

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I found the construction extremely straightfoward and even hand-picked the zipper. Hemming a single fold baby hem took forever as I did it by hand *yawn* but even with the hand sewing, it only took a single, humid afternoon!

How is the Heat treating you, or the cold depending on your hemisphere?

xx Megs

Op Shopping – you never know what you’ll find

I love a Bargain!! Who doesn’t, really? Op Shops/Charity Shops/Thrift stores (depending on your local vernacular) are a great way to pick up a bargain and find something vintage too. I LOVE them.

Recently, my Mum, my sister and I took an afternoon together combing some local Salvos (Salvation Army) stores looking for vintage-y sewing and crafting stuff and we were not dissapointed. Mum loves to quilt and she found a 10kg bag of fabric scraps and remnants for $5.50, not bad!, and we found two copies of a locally printed “sewing with knits” book for $2 so we each took one.

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The book is great, filled with hints and even some pattern drafting advice

I picked up this 1980’s handheld sewing machine (I’ll have to replace the battery pack though as the wires are slightly corroded), but it has all the parts included except the instructions, though I’m sure I will figure that out without to much hassle haha

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It comes complete with some adorably typo’d usage suggestions and illustrations

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I also grabbed a buttload of zips in various colours (can you say 50c each? hah) and these cute buttons;

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The patterns we found were all for kids or teens mostly, and we have no young kids in our family right now, so we just left them be apart from this one I found which I think the shorter version in red wool would look quite 50’s, especially with a self drafted collar added instead of that round neck thing it has going on. Might turn out well!

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Honestly, I am surprised I don’t trawl the charity shops all the time, but sometimes there are better things to do, like enjoy the unseasonably pleasant weather on the balcony of my favourite bar with my favourite person; here’s how we spent our thursday;

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How is your week Going, Blogosphere?

xx Megs

My Summer Playsuit Plan [PIC HEAVY]

As I’m sure you’ve noticed I missed the Fall For Cotton deadline, which is a bit of a bummer but I decided that rather than rush it, I’d forgo the competition, and take my time to make the blouse something that I would wear, instead of look at it and say “Eugh, look at the shoddy job on that!”. Anyway, I’ll post about that soon!

Back to now, the summer is COMING! (Here in the Southern Hemisphere), which means I need some summer clothing! And I have about a month or two before the heat really kicks in (It gets 40 degrees celsius plus here in Perth). So my plans include; A playsuit, some shorts, cute blouses and a dress or two.

First up is my Playsuit; I have decided to sew a vintage styled one-shoulder playsuit with a matching overskirt.

Here is the picture I have drawn up, and the fabric I’ve chosen, which is a light Cotton poplin in a ditsy polka dot and strawberries on a grass green field.

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THIS IS WHY I SHOULD JOIN PINTREST!

My inspiration images I have gathered from combing the internet and blogs as well as the covers of old sewing patterns and old photography. I do not own any of the images below, and I am not too sure where most of these came from originally, (I saved them all in my images folder) so if you see your photo here, let me know and I’ll credit you! xx

2161026658_b6ab817100 BLUE-WHITE-POLKA-DOT-PLAYSUIT-SHORTSUIT-SHORTS cherries_jubilee13 cherries_jubilee22 loomisdeanlifeAAAACwNRZfkAAAAAAFLuGg il_570xN.432381872_evds il_570xN.438587269_ozsp il_570xN.479744020_pos1 images imagescc imagese index Simplicity 1169 tumblr_m9pwmjWN1C1qf6jy9o1_r2_500

 

 

What do you think, anything you’d make? or would you use that fabric for something different?

 

Frantically Finishing Fall for cotton Blouse! and Freebies

I have been really busy with work and family stuff since Fall for Cotton started, so I decided to Lurk in the background and watch everyone else’s progress, until LAST WEEK when I said, screw this, I want to do it, I know I can, so I have been squeezing in as much as I can since then and I knew I’d only manage a small piece, so I chose a cute Vogue pattern, from the 1930’s, a wrap around blouse, which I will blog about in full tomorrow night, or Monday, depending on when I can get my S.O to take pictures for me. Until then, I will leave that topic alone!

In other news, I have added a Freebies page to my Blog, as you can see under the Header at the top of this page, it has (ever expanding) resources across the web that are all FREE!! Books and patterns and Pattern drafting tutorials, and the best thing is that I will be adding to it every time I come across something new, I actually have much more to go in there, but it’s 3.18a.m. and my eyelids are falling down!

Feel free to tell me your own freebie, if you have one or know of one as I would love to add it to the page to share around the sewing community! xx

 

Megs xx

Friday Freebie: Dress Design Draping and Flat Pattern Making

AS promised, here is the link to this amazing book that I have downloaded to ALL of my devices! It’s bloomin’ marvelous

megs xx

The Perfect Nose

Edit 13 December, 2013: I was alerted today that the copyright for this book may have been renewed so I have taken down the link. I apologise for the inconvenience but this is a precaution I have to take as I have no wish to violate anyone’s legal rights over this material.

My aim with this book (as with all of my scans) was to make the knowledge available to everyone that needs it, free of charge. I understand that not everyone has access to the kinds of libraries that stock these books and very few people can afford to buy one, so I help where I can. I cannot, however, do so at the cost of someone else’s intellectual property rights. So please don’t write to me with requests. 

I’m leaving the review up as it complies with fair use, and I’ve added a disclaimer just in case.

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PolkaDot Bikini and a Floral Apron for a friend

So, let me preface this long post with a bit of background info;

I have been sewing since about the age of Five thanks to my Nana, who was a lacemaker in her youth. She always had me tinkering around with scraps, making little purses and dolls clothing and such, but it wasn’t until last year that I decided to try making clothing for myself based on the fact that I love Vintage but I can’t really afford it. I decided when I began sewing that I would try to push myself to learn new skills and techniques with each thing I made and it has been working out really well for me so far, with few disastrous outcomes.

A few Months ago, a plus sized Pin Up friend of mine jumped on an offer I made of swimwear in exchange for pictures at her next photoshoot. THis became swimwear and an Apron, because I Had an extra couple of hours and a darling yard of a floral poplin that I had no other use for.

The new skills I attempted with these pieces were:

  • My First ever Self Drafted patterns
  • MY first ever attempt at swimwear
  • My First time working with stretch fabrics
  • My first time sewing for someone else

I am really one to just throw myself at things, come good or no, and although they are not perfect items, I think it was an overall success and a steep learning curve with a few hiccups, but definitely less than I expected.

The Bikini, below is a full coverage bottom, and a simple triangles and straps top in a cute vivid seafoam polkadot spandex/lycra fabric, fully lined too. I had a bit of trouble with the side seams as I attempted to French seam them but with the zigzag stitch I used it just wouldnt work at ALL, so I unpicked, just sewed a standard seam and pinked the insides. As it was stretch, I cut everything roughly 4 inches smaller all round than she is, but not too much so that the fabric would warp the dots. I didn’t have much trouble with the lining, thank the stars, it puckered in a place or two, but in general it performed admirably under my very unsure hands.

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AS you can see there is a slight gaping at the bust area too, but tieing it tighter at the neck eliminates it mostly.

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I think the bottoms turned out perfectly sized and I am overall pleased with them.

Now, the apron was just me having fun, no pattern, I just cut a semi circle, a square and attached a contrasting gathered band of blue cotton to the bottom and pulled the top into a sweetheart with some gathers, but I really love how it turned out! I didn’t line it, didn’t have the time, and I wish I has as you can see it is a tad flimsy but such is life.

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How kitsch is that fabric!!! And only  $2 for the metre in Spotlight!

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You can plainly see how the bottom has wrinkled because of how flimsy it is without a lining or interfacing *grr*

I am only starting out in this sewing vintage styled clothing thing, but I do love a good challenge and it really ticks all the boxes with creativity and technicality combined, complete convert for life I reckon! What converted or enticed you to the dark side? Were you always crafty or is it a new found joy? I love to hear others stories! xx

Oh and for my next post I will be posting a download of a 1940’s dressmaking book in .PDF (totally legal too), it’s a completely engrossing amazing read, with fantastic tips and hints for draping and pattern drafting!

Megs xxx

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