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My Adele Top

August 19, 2017

It’s kind of a stretch but I’ve rediscovered Adele’s 19, with Cold Shoulder as one of the songs I like to move my head to in the subway. I was determined to resist the cold shoulder trend at the beginning of the summer. This article echoed pretty accurately my state of mind. That was before sewandstyle posted the adorable Alice and Olivia Alyssa, made out of poplin, which retails for 240USD. Upon googling, I stumbled upon her sister, Layla, made of silk, which retails for 295USD and also had some elements I liked. I knew I needed to get my hand on McCall’s 7573, which had already been popping up all over the internet. After a short cutting session on a weekend night and a single sewing session on a weeknight (yes, that’s how fast a sew this is), this happened:

The fabric is from stash, a lightweight stretch cotton bought at the fabric market in Hamburg years ago. Because it’s somewhat see-through and I didn’t want a pattern surimposition, I underlined the ruffle with a white voile fabric.

All seams are finished with bias (armholes), French seams (side seams) or rolled hem.

I realised (too late, of course) that because the design I was aiming at raises the center front, if that pattern piece was left as is, the center front would bunch and the front hem wouldn’t be straight. So I had to draft an additional pattern piece that I attached to the center front. The piecing is hidden under the circular ruffle, at that point I gave myself a tap on the shoulder for having thought of underlining the ruffle.

When the piecing was done, I tried the top back on. It fit well and looked a lot like my inspiration garment, but left me feeling somewhat naked, especially in the back. Although my bra was covered, I was not sure it would remain so when moving around and didn’t want to deal with the insecurity. So I added a band center back inside the top, to be pulled in between my bra and skin when wearing, in order to secure the top there. And that’s when I also got the idea of the alternative back closure seen in the pictures, which is even more secure.

So meet Adele, Alyssa and Layla’s adopted cousin.

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Vogue Patterns Fall 2017

August 3, 2017

linkSigns that the summer that never really settled in will be fading soon: it’s summer clearance in the shops, and sewing pattern companies are releasing their Fall collections, as Vogue Patterns did today. I’m rather disappointed in this one, and almost feel deceived. Why deceived? McCall’s Pattern Company had a few videos up in their instagram stories last week, showing some of the garments to the fall patterns, one of which was V1559.

Carlos showed it with a shoulder cover up and without, making it a two–in-one dress. This is something I was looking forward to, so I was unpleasantly surprised to see that the cover up is not included in the pattern. The beginning of the video showing the shrug has been edited off. Now I’m not even sure I want to buy the pattern anymore. The underarm holes look weird to me and I understand this may be a design feature, and I know a regular seam would be restrictive there but how about a gusset? I guess one could draft a gusset, right? But what I really want is that cover up/shrug, or at least a picture thereof, so I could try and draft it… Anyway, on to the other patterns that caught my eyes…

I like the look of V1562 from Lialia by Julia Alarcon, but the neck is too open for our fall and winter here in Hamburg. So I think I’m going to have to pass…

V9266 is a copycat of Melania Trump’s inauguration attire. As a set it’s too recognizable as such and too mother-of-the-bride-y for me to buy, but I like the dress, the neck darts make me think of my Talvikki, which I like a lot (garment is unblogged). The bolero closes left over right, contrary to the convention but typical for Ralph Lauren.

I like V1558 by Rachel Comey, more because of the instagram post than based on the pictures on the pattern’s page, really.

Anne Klein does not disappoint with V1560. Always classy and classical.

I really like V9267 with the many options and it’s custom fit so no FBA required! Vogue did a good job at pattern matching on the bodice center front seam here.

V1552 by Sandra Betzina and V9268 by Kathryn Brenne are like cousins, if not sisters!

What are your thoughts on this collection?

Sewing Goodness Extracts

July 20, 2017

More than 83,500 patterns are now available online.

It’s summer! Make your own espadrilles!

But if you’re already in a “sewing plans for fall” modus, than look at Butterick’s and McCall’s latest releases. I think Lisette for Butterick B6482 has somewhat of a Rucci flair, but not only. What do you think about Beauté J’adore mix of the sleeve and blouson trends?

 

 

Lessons Learned

June 23, 2017

3 Years ago I made the hypnotic side panel dress, which I have since given away. I liked it and wore it but had to admit to a couple of mistakes that prevented me from *loving* it. First, the fabric I had chosen was a sturdy linen, with little drape. Then, at the time I made a cheat FBA i.e. tracing my high bust measurement size at the shoulders and transitioning to my full bust measurement size at the under armscye, not because I was lazy but because I did not know better. This time, I traced it anew and made a 3-cm armhole dart FBA separately on each side of the pattern. Why? Because the side panels are similar but not identical. I used my French curves to make sure the curves would still match and sure enough, the sewing was a breeze. That was a lot of work but it had to be prior to cutting into this juicy Vlisco fabric:

 

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The best is, I have enough to make another dress…

Quiet Trend (Mock-)Knot Style?

June 22, 2017

Still playing catching up with Instagram

The loudest trend of the year is definitely the Sleeve trend and it almost made me “overhear” this (mock-)knot style trend. Couple of examples are the Kielo Wrap dress by Named Clothing , the Trend patterns Knot Front Dress (which incorporates the cutout trend), Burda 05-2017-110 or Burda 03-2016-108. Not from this year but appropriate: Vogue 1310 by Chado Ralph Rucci, that may be worn as a dress.

I hopped on this bandwagon with the Juliet Woven Shirt by StyleArc, which also features the still quite popular mullet hem:

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My fabric is a linen with lurex stripes. It is quite see-through so I have to wear it with a tank underneath, which is the reason why I skipped the buttons so far despite having actually bought them… As you can see, I did wear it without the buttons and was considering adding only a single one at waist level but after test riding it, I will be adding the buttons as intended by the designer.

The instructions from Stylearc are quite brief as usual, with images provided only for a couple of key steps.

I made a regular 3-cm FBA on the left side, than cut the right side at the waist marking and transferring the FBA to the upper body. I then slashed the lower right front from waist to hem and opened it the 3 cm of my FBA, tapering to nothing at the hem. Worked a charm.

I love the play of the stripes. I wore this shirt on my first day of work at my new job and  it felt good 🙂

StyleArc Autum Dress for the Summer

June 20, 2017

If you follow me on Instagram, you know that I’ve been sewing a bit, albeit barely blogging. I have a new job and have also spent the best of the last weeks alone with the girls so had to prioritize but I’m now trying to work on my backlog. First comes the Autumn dress by Stylearc.

As I stated before, StyleArc’s instructions are held to a minimum. Also to me, the illustration showing the back pleat was misleading and I ended up ignoring it and relying on the technical design, the “pleat” and “center back” marks and my common sense to figure it out. I shot a picture:

Only alteration was a fba according to Maria Denmark’s tutorial for no-dart fronts. I also finished the hem by hemming it with bias instead of turning it up and sew as instructed.

Make sure to pick a lightweight fabric because there is a lot of fabric involved in that back pleat and it would weigh down the yoke if too heavy.

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Sewing Goodness Extracts

May 1, 2017

I never heard abour a trouser petticoat until this post from Corecouture. While you’re at it, have a look at her half a cold shoulder shirt.

This is the definition of labour of love.

Vogue 1531 has been popping up all around, one version prettier than the next

New pattern on my to sew list: the Kalle shirtdress. I also like the Collins top a lot. Aaaaand the La paz jacket from Itch to Stitch.

Instagram followers know that I’ve been sewing. I’m sorry, I just can’t seem to find the time to shoot pictures and draft posts for the blog. 😦

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