25 Mar

I found this today and had to share it with you all! Some dress inspiration from another designer/blogger!


party dress back view

I have been designing this dress in my head for quite some time. I design a lot of things in my head –in the shower, on the bus, when I’m meant to be doing something else and when I’m nodding off to sleep – it’s a busy old head!

Anyhows, an invitation to the gorgeous Rhonda’s 30th bitthday party was a great prompt to put some of these ideas into action. I met Rhonda’s mum, Tina many moons ago when we moved next door to her and she soon became more than a neighbour. More confidante, great friend and the most wonderful childminder to my son. So this party was really a family affair and I needed a dress.

party dress full skirt

I’ve got real issues with buying clothes from high street shops nowadays. I haven’t bought anything new (save underwear and shoes, of course!) in over a year and get much more…

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Gretchen Hirsch is back on Craftsy!

17 Feb

Gretchen of Gertie’s New Blog for Better Sewing has a new Craftsy course! It is called Sew Retro: The Starlet Suit Jacket. Of course, it’s on sale for 50% off.  So, of course, I bought one.  I already bought her Bombshell Dress class and though I have yet to make my dress, I did watch the class all the way through.  I’m quite impressed by Gretchen’s teaching style.  She is very likeable and has a contagious enthusiasm about sewing clothes and vintage garments. She also makes advanced techniques like boning seem incredibly easy and, dare I say it, fun.

Yes, obviously I’m justifying yet another Craftsy sewing class purchase. At this point, I think I’ve purchased the equivalent of an entire college semester’s worth of sewing classes! I shall be well versed in couture construction techniques by the time I’ve done them all.  And I’ll be oh, so stylishly attired too in my custom-fitting pants, dresses, and suit. What a lovely thought!

Sometimes You Need Pants Too

9 Feb

Alright, bear with me as I share yet another Craftsy bargain.  I swear I don’t get any money from them! In fact, they keep luring my money away from me with these awesome classes…

So today, the discount is for another couture-level class(!). This one is Jean-ius: Reverse Engineer Your Favorite Fit. The class is 50% off, making it quite irresistible to my bargain-loving soul. The course covers how to draft a pattern from a pair of pants which already fit well. You don’t have to deconstruct the garment to create your pattern (shoo!).

I’ll be interested to try this one out.  I tend to wear dresses and skirts a lot, but that’s partly because finding pants that fit is quite a challenge.  I’m sure no one else can relate to that. 😉  So the idea of making my own pants to fit these long legs is appealing.  I’m curious to learn his techniques for a good fit — commercial patterns for pants have generally intimidated me because I know there’s a lot of room for error on those.  So using a pair that fits from the get go seems much more logical to me.

I’m also intrigued to learn how one can draft a pattern to duplicate an existing garment.  Imagine the possibilities! I could repro any of my favorite garments. That has always been a fantasy of mine. No more dilemmas about how much to wear a certain item in case it wears out.

And thus my Make It List grows longer…

Another Craftsy.com Bargain!

25 Jan

Well, it never rains, but it pours. Which is always lovely when it comes to sales and discounts as far as I’m concerned. 🙂

A few days ago, I purchased a Craftsy.com class since it was on sale. Well today, Craftsy emailed me with an alert that now their couture dressmaking class, The Couture Dress, is on sale. Normally, the class is $80, but it’s 50% off today.  The price includes a Vogue pattern (V8648) which apparently is a pricey pattern. So it seems like quite a bargain. I certainly fell for it! I’m excited to learn couture sewing techniques and a video class seems a good way to do it (allowing me to watch, rewind, watch again). I’m also curious to see if the techniques are too fidgety for my patience. Dare I confess, I tend to dislike hand sewing…

So the sewing projects are quickly accumulating!  A few days ago, I was trying to enroll in a fashion design class, but it turned out that the class size had already been exceeded, leaving no room for lil’ me. I was bummed at the time, but now I’m seeing it as fortuitous. I’ll be spending plenty of time on this blog, my Craftsy classes, the 1912 Titanic Sewing Project, and whatever other sewing adventures I stumble across in the future.

Until next time!

50% Discount on Sew Retro class

21 Jan

A lovely little bargain landed in my inbox today! McCall’s Pattern Company is offering a discount on an  online  sewing class. Titled Sew Retro: Perfect Bombshell Dress, the Craftsy.com class is taught by Gretchen Hirsch of Gertie’s New Blog for Better Sewing. For about $25, you can go through video tutorials to learn how to create  a 50’s style dress with a structured bodice (boning, padding, bra cups) and sarong skirt.

The project looks awesome and as I mentioned earlier this month, I’ve been wanting to make a ’50s dress. I’ve never done a structured bodice before so this project should have a nice level of challenge. I hope it is a great learning experience ‘cuz I’m signing up! BTW, read Gertie’s blog — it’s great!

Project Runway All Stars

17 Jan

Believe it or not I don’t have cable TV. But I finally got internet last fall. Thanks to that development and the lovely Hulu.com, Project Runway is back in my life, specifically Project Runway All Stars! PR generally puts me in a happy place, although I have to confess that I have been burnt out on the more recent seasons. So All Stars is perfect for me. I am looking forward to future episodes!

I’m loving the cast for the show, but 2 of my favorites ever are Austin and Kenley!  Talk about people who embrace a retro look in their personal style as well as their designs!

Dreaming of a 1950s dress

8 Jan

Last month, I mysteriously began fantasizing about sewing and wearing a 1950s style dress. The fitted bodice! The narrow waist! The full skirt! The 3/4 sleeves! The yards and yards and yards of fabric!

Wherever did this daydream come from?

Actually, it wasn’t really that mysterious considering the fact that White Christmas is my favorite holiday movie and that movie is chock-full of the post-WWII, “New Look” era silhouettes: fitted bodices and cinched waists paired with either a narrow pencil skirt or a full, flared skirt & petticoats. This silhouette differed significantly from the 1940s and generally is attributed to Christian Dior’s post-war fashion collection in 1947. Thank you, Mr. Dior!

What’s lovely about all this is that I discovered another vintage clothing lover/sewer’s blog: Edelweiss Patterns. She made a beautiful blue dress that closely matches the dress I was dreaming of. This Butterick Retro 5556 project is definitely going on the list of “To Do’s”! I envision making it in a hardier fabric than silk since I’d like to be able to wear it to work. The diagonal plaid fabric that Butterick used in the sample dress is really nice, but I can’t imagine matching all those lines across the seams…