Tuesday, 21 August 2012

The Blinder (V8815 #2)

Another V8815 (OMG on sale now) - how could I stop at just 1?

Allow me to introduce Number 2, The Blinder:

No photo editing here - you can tell, can't you!!! And I am not honestly sure why I wanted to keep my scarf on - maybe to protect my face from the blinding rays? Hmm. Something to ponder. The skirt is V1282 BTW.

I was tempted to make this blinding little white number when I saw Erika B.'s version.  When Anne of Pretty Grievances used her magic to grant me temporary membership to the Erika B. club, I really thought I should get myself sorted, and was happy to find a suitable piece of fabric (stretch pique, I believe, from Tessuti Fabrics a while back) in my stash.

And sorted I am!  I am extremely, silly-smile, lightheaded happy with this top - I just love the clean look of the top and the sharp tight lines of the bodice, letting loose into a crazy crisp peplum.  Crumples like mad of course...

The top is as before with my original Troubadour top, but made with a bit more ease all over. I added facings to the neckline (finished neatly then hand-stitched to the zip seams and shoulder seams), and a facing to the peplum - this because I wanted weight in that curve, and I wanted a super-neat finish with no annoying puckers. This too is a hem that is hand sewn, as are the small sleeve ends. And instead of doing a little light gathering of the sleeve heads I made little pleats there.

Although this has taken me a while to (hand)finish and post, it feels like a move in the right sewing direction for me.  Since I don't throw things out often, I don't really need new clothes; if I'm making more I should be taking care to make things I really like.

PS in case you're wondering why there are no words, pictures or cute smiles edited onto these photos it's purely due to the lateness of the hour. I know I've been away ages - thank you so much for sticking with me!

Saturday, 4 August 2012

Relaxing Dress - Modified V1257 (DKNY)

"New dress, have a rest." Could be my new sewing slogan, you know...  Sounds a bit like "knit one, purl one" - and that little ditty certainly keeps the knitters going... sometimes for months! Yes, a slogan's the go - but is this the right one? Might need to think on that... maybe just here on this relaxing stone wall... I wonder if anyone would fetch me a nice little semillon if I called out "Hey, YOU" politely? 

Oh - that photo!

Yep, took me a few tries to get up here admittedly. A spot of exertion makes a little rest all the more enjoyable though, doesn't it?

I AM on my lunch break, you cheeky so and so!  And no one has fetched me a glass of anything, so I will be absolutely fine to go back to work shortly. In a little while. When the sun moves...

Alright, alright.  Coming.  I CAN take a hint, you know! 

And there is absolutely no need to poke me in the eye with an M.

It is not propping me up. 

I am awake. 

The hat? Louis Vuitton-style. Made it myself, just used some Picasa that we had lying around.

A close-up? OK, but I have to get back to work now.  Be professional. You know what I mean!

So. It's becoming evident to me that Ms Karan is designing for curvy, shapely women. The bodices on her recent patterns gape on me, but regular Vogues fit me in this area...

The approximate fit you see on the left here was achieved by removing a reasonable chunk of length from the overlapping left and right front bodice pieces, but a proper SBA would have been better. I didn't remove as much as was really needed because when I discovered the problem I'd already made the pleats and lined the front pieces, and taking out more length would have taken away the pleats.

Anyway.  Good enough.

So. I gather V1257 would be more popular amongst sewists were it not for its surprisingly constrictive sleeve design and superfluous toggle. My modifications were as follows*:
  1. replace constrictive cut-on sleeves with normal sleeves - also shortened due to fabric limitations
  2. remove toggle and all toggle-related steps
  3. add full lining to bodice and skirt using made up process which I doubt I could document
  4. removed length from front centre bodice (left and right pattern pieces) as a last minute dodgy SBA.

*When I'm feeling more awake I may post more information on these changes on PatternReview.  

The result is encouraging - imperfect but perfectly wearable, merino wool + stretch lining warm, charmingly green and of course, very friendly - the sort of dress that encourages people to smile at you. 

Below are some photos taken on the dummy - more of those poses against the sky that I like so much, which you can compare with the original pattern envelope photo. I hope these clarify the modifications I made to the pattern. I know they'll also make it abundantly clear that I need to use an overlocker to clean up the insides of my clothes!



Dodgy SBA, version 1

You've probably noticed all these photos have words on them, and some also have silly decorations.  There are two reasons for this - the first is that I recently noticed Tumblr in my blog stats as one of my top traffic sources (and obviously if images are being taken from this blog I'd like their ownership to remain identifiable), and the second is just for fun.  I hope it doesn't look too naff!

Finally, I've got some overlocker news to share - I bought one on eBay! Unfortunately it was quite a disappointment.  Contrary to its representation on eBay, it just doesn't work. I've taken it to my local sewing macine repair shop today and they were confident they'd be able to fix the problem (something's locked up and the handwheel can't move and neither can the other bits attached to the handwheel), so hopefully there'll be some good news within a week.
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