Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Simple Pattern Meets Audacious Fabric - McCall 3830

On Pinterest you can always find runway photos of outrageous fashion designs with over the top embellishment or over the top fabric manipulation.  The designer's runway is the perfect place for inspiration to make garments for the "real way" or "real life".   

My sister asked me to make her a special garment, a skirt.  We went to one of the major textile stores in Chicago to see what we could find.  We walked out with three yards of a "simple finely woven mesh" with strips of faux leather and ribbon/sequins sewn to it.  My sister just wanted a simple skirt made out of it.  She bought enough so that I could get one too, plus a bunch of other fabrics.  ;-)

So this is where the marrying of  simple McCall 3830 and the audacious faux leather/lace skirt began.  The pattern pieces used where the front and back skirt.  I had to figure out how to eliminate the transparency.  So I underlined it with another layer of mesh fabric and lined the skirt with black tricot.

The skirt:  Simple, right?  Not so simple with this fabric.  The challenge was to line up the faux leather strips and the lace so that it matched all the way around.  This was accomplished by aligning the notches of the front and back skirt.  Also, checking the bottom edge to make sure it was even.  As a safety precaution, I added three inches just in case. After carefully cutting the front and back skirt pieces, I underlined it with the mesh.  JuliaBobbin has a tutorial on how to underline lace fabric here. Also, I did a similar process on a lace dress here.

Next obstacle was to determine the curve of the darts to eliminate inconsistency in the fabric.  This was a little tricky. I changed the curve and end point of the dart to avoid sewing the floating circles.

Finally to hem the skirt, I simply measured where the hem should be; removed the faux leather strips; and cut both layers of the mesh about a 1/2" below the last row of the faux leather.

The lining:  I used the skirt pattern for the lining.  I sewed it to the waist of the skirt after the zipper (invisible) was installed and the stay tape was sewn to the waist.  The hem of the lining stops about 1 1/2" above the hem of the skirt.

I'm happy with the results and so was my sister.  So, using the very simple pattern with a standout fabric makes this skirt special.  The project was not hard to do, it just took a little time to figure out how to achieve it.

Happy Sewing!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Vogue 1127 - Tying on the Pussy Bow Blouse

Sorry the photos aren't the best quality

I decided that I'd make this blouse a few years ago. It was one of the patterns that I bought to the Palmer-Pletsch workshop in 2012. Marta Alto taught a session on dart rotation. It was of great interest to me as I almost always need to make a FBA. And sometimes I want to maintain the style of the garment without bust darts. So one of my desired take-a-ways from the workshop was to become proficient and confident in making dart rotation to other areas in a garment.

A few of my favorite sewing bloggers (Sarah and Amanda) have made this blouse and were pretty satisfied with the results. Both ladies, made a few changes to the collar and tie. If I make it again, I plan to use some of their changes. But for this one, I followed suggested construction process given in the guide sheet.  

This pattern comes in sizes 6 through 20.

The pattern description -MISSES' JACKET, SKIRT AND BLOUSE: Jacket is fitted and cropped, with lined, long raglan sleeves and standup collar. Skirt is straight-fitting, lined and 1" below normal waist with waistline facing, back darts, back slit and invisible zipper. Length is 2" above mid-knee. Blouse is semi-fitted, sleeveless, front and back gathers, back neckline slit, gathered standup collar and ties.

Amanda stated in her review, the silhouette of the blouse is like a trapeze dress. I probably will never wear it outside my skirt or pants. But it's a good idea to taper it a bit if you plan to wear it outside. Especially if you make a FBA. The instructions were fine. Nothing difficult or confusing.

The combination of the three pieces drew me to this pattern. I like how the seams are finished. Vogue includes a pattern for armhole binding and they recommend french seams for the sides of the blouse. I also like the high collar and the tie. Once I finished the blouse with the bow attached as instructed, I did notice that the tie was a little heavy and I wished I made it as a separate piece. It is very long but that's okay because I'm tall.

I used a georgette print from a local fabric store. The print was a good match for the purple tweed. My alterations were minimal. I made a FBA and rotated the dart of the gathers along the neckline. I also lowered the armhole a little because they were a little snug. There's a great chance that I may try this pattern again. But next time, I will follow Amanda's changes to construct the collar. I do recommend this pattern, the entire set of coordinates.

It is a good pattern to try. It has several construction techniques that will allow the sewist an opportunity to add some unique finishing touches to the finished product. It's worth a try if you like this style. The jacket and skirt are reviewed here.

Oops! I Did It Again!

Too much time has gone by since my last post. Shame on me, again!

I'm thankful that my inactivity has not deterred you from coming to visit my little spot in the cyber-world. I'm grateful for your continued visits and your thoughtful comments.

Truth be told, for the last eight months I've been the project manager for a major upgrade to our research, proposal, and award tracking application. It's been a bear and it's taking an extremely large amount of time to complete and too many over-time hours for me. Our projected Go-Live date was February 23rd. We missed it because of a mis-staged upgrade. So we are still working at it with a new Go-Live date of May 2nd. My fingers and toes are crossed.

In the meantime, I decided that I need to take back some of my time and reinstate my routine "sewing appointments" with me, myself, and I. Mid-March I was grateful to be able to vacation in Jamaica. It was an excellent vacation. We lodged at the Rui Negril hotel and resort. All-inclusive is the best. No worries, be happy. Rum punch, be happy. Raggae music on the beach, be happy. Jerk chicken, be happy.

So, of course, I had a few things to take on vacation. I will blog those soon.

My last post was on my first Mood Sewing Network blog, which was a Vogue Badgley Mischka suit. The part of the project that I did not review was the blouse. It is made using fabric from another store. So I will review that next.

Happy Sewing! C


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