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“Score!” Moment

July 24, 2014

…is when your supervisor, seeing that you’re sitting alone, comes in and says: “May I ask you something? (Of course, you’ll answer yes) You always have such particular, nice dresses, where do you get them from?” and you can answer “Well, actually, I made most of them”. Score!

I’m wearing Vogue 1159 today.

Vogue Patterns Fall 2014

July 15, 2014

It’s 27 Celsius in Hamburg today so it feels somewhat weird to talk about Fall patterns. But Vogue did such a good job this time, I didn’t want to wait.

Up there in the category “sleeves out of control“, along with Vogue 1324 (evidence 1) and Vogue 8718 (evidence 2), Vogue 1416 by Guy Laroche:

Really, I like where these sleeves where going but I think they overshoot the mark.

In the category “I look like I’m wearing my daughter’s garment“, Vogue 1404 by Ralph Rucci:

Don’t get me wrong. This pattern is appealling to me, just like all of Ralph Rucci’s because they are full of details and techniques I’d die to try my hand at and I doubt I’ll ever come across in patterns from any other. This one is no exception. I just think the shape of this dress is not suited to my figure, and that I’d look like trying to not look my age, even after extensive alterations (FBA, lengthening,…).

I tend to want to put Vogue 1408 by DonnaKaran in this category as well, though I’m seeing more potential here:

In the “Maybe” category, Vogue 1409 by DonnaKaran, the big sister of Vogue 1408:

Yes, but not with long sleeves (maybe 3/4) and definitely not in velvet.

In the “Staple potential” category:

Vogue 1412 by Rebecca Taylor. Another nice top design, following Vogue 1387:

And also Vogue 1406 by Rachel Comey, reminiscent of Vogue 1314 by Tracy Reese to me:


Vogue 1405 by Tracy Reese:

In the “deja vu” category:

Vogue 1411 by Sandra Betzina, which makes me think of a tamed down Vogue 1378 by DonnaKaran:

Vogue 1419 by Ralph Rucci, similar silhouette to Vogue 1239 also by Ralph Rucci. I will get my hands on this pattern. Lots of luscious details, and I’m curious about the finishing because this is unlined:

Other patterns in the “I like” category:

Vogue 1413 by Mizono:

Vogue 14 15 by Tom and Linda Platt:

Vogue 1417 by Donna Karan, more for the very on-trend pants than for the top:

Vogue 1407 by DKNY:

Vogue 9024:

What’s your take on this collection?


Look Ma! I made a bra!

July 10, 2014

I made a bra:

Medium support and coverage. Road tested: it’s not a sports bra, but I can definitely run to get into the bus or subway and not have to readjust or fear that anything “spills out”. The cover fabric is a 2-way see-through white cotton jersey, which I think goes well with the black foam lining. Fit is spot on. At least now. When I first tried it, it looked like the cups were wayyyy too big. Until I significantly shortened the band. So I had to unpick and resew the hook and eye in the back. And I got this:

The instructions? There are no instructions, just an “order of construction list”, not really suited for the beginner I am. So I resorted to this -great- video tutorial. I was expecting this to be a quick project. Maybe I need to quit watching TV. This bra took approximately half a day to make.

Before cutting, make sure that all pattern pieces that must be joined are joined. This is not always clear in the instructions and I realized too late that the unnumbered piece of paper was actually supposed to be joined to pattern piece 4 before cutting the fabric. These pieces should be named 4a and 4b instead, IMO. It may be obvious if you’ve made a bra before but to me, it wasn’t.

Also, if you’re a newbie like me, you might not spot the difference between the boning casing and the underwire casing, and then notice that they have a right and a wrong side. I assumed the wrong side, that goes under the skin is the velvety one, for comfort and for a better “sit” or “grip” of the bra against the skin, as is the case with the foam lining.

The instructions suggest that you cut a slightly longer bra band in order to adjust for fit as needed (as shown here). Be aware that if you do that, the content of the Basic Kit Plus from MakeBra may only allow you to sew one bra (instead of 2), at least if you’re making a bigger size ( I made 90D). I based myself on logics and figured, since I need a FBA, chances are good that my “bone structure” (bra band) is rather slightly small compared to what one might expect based on my cup size. In fact, I think the next version will be a sister size, probably a 85DD.

The only dislike? Not really wearable as t-shirt bra, because the seams of the cups are visible. This might be due to the fact that the pieces of upper fabrics are zigzag together instead of sewn with a straight stitch. If someone has more clue than me, please speak up.

I already ordered other patterns from MakeBra, as well as some more supplies. I want to test patterns with more or less support and coverage. I may be hooked on bra making (pun intended).

Great post on bra fitting issues

Knitting Again

July 9, 2014

A couple of months ago, I fell in love with this jacket:

I found out that it was crocheted. I almost fell down my chair when I read that I would need 11 skeins of each color to make this. This jacket weighs more than 1kg (2lbs)! I still had to have it. I perused the internet in order to find the original garn and was lucky enough to get my hands on red and sand (light beige), which I though would match beautifully. Until I crocheted the gauge. Too bad I forgot to take a picture but it just wasn’t was I had envisioned and I was not ready to waste all that yarn (and money!) and much of my time to make a jacket I wouldn’t like. So the one jacket turned into two. These are the patterns I settled for:

I figured I’d use the more tame color for the more elaborate pattern and the brighter color for the simpler design. And this is one of them:

I’m really happy about this. The yarn is a dream to wear. The pattern is designed and written very accurately. Though I cheated: I made a FBA. I knitted the back and sleeves according to my upper bust measurement size and the front is a mix of sizes. There are 550 grams of wool in this baby so I decided to stabilise the shoulders, using a felt wool band that I conveniently found in the notions section of the fabric store. The weight of the sleeves were pulling them down, making the jacket look too big overall. I also stabilised the button and buttonhole band. And I secured the button with flat buttons on the wrong side.

DM is undergoing desensitizing so she helped me sew one of the sleeve seams in the physician’s waiting room (you have to stay there 30 min after the shot, in case she gets an anaphylactic shock) and was amazed at how much time and effort it takes to make a garment. I wonder if she’ll be sorrier to have holes at her knees from playing in school and at the playground?

Projects on Ravelry:

Jacket 1757

Jacket 2115

Crocheted Textured jacket 2147

Other helpful links: Reinforcing knit button bands, here and here

More knitting to come…

Sewing Goodness Extracts

June 26, 2014

Ok, Who doesn’t know Peter, the seamster, who sometimes sews for his mom of for his alter ego Cathy? Well, let me introduce you to the Bûcheron sur le fil (Lumberjack on a thread ) who sews for his daughters. If you don’t read French, get Google Translate to work or just look at the pictures, knowing that a dad made those for her daughters and it will make you melt.

I discovered Indisew, an attempt to get all indie pdf patterns under one room, internet-wise. Not a bad idea and a great way to come across unknown-to-me brands. I hope more designers join in as time goes.

I seem to have missed some very interesting events in Hamburg, so I’m thankful Anita blogged about them here, here and here. And while you’re there, have a look at the detailed documentation of her master project, the trenchcoat.

I love Origami in clothing, so no wonder I loved this inspiration post from Rhonda.

She not only made her wedding dress from a Marfy pattern, but she made the bridemaids’ dresses from a Vogue wedding dress pattern!

Always in awe when looking a Jean’s jackets: her latest sew is posted here, but also looks at this, this and knit ones here and here.

I’m a Missionary

June 20, 2014

…and I made a convert! My sis is a full-time working mom of three (6, 4, 1) and have been for years telling me she’d like to get sewing as well. Well, she has! Look at the picture she sent me today:


Look at that waist piping. And I don’t think she will have difficulty with matching stripes, if this is her first make! OK, she doesn’t have sewing machine just yet, but she’s considering getting one. A seamstress might be born…

So excited!

Sewing Goodness Extracts

June 18, 2014

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