Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Christmas Dress 2017

For those of me who don't follow me on Facebook or Instagram: Merry Christmas!

So last week I suddenly decided that I needed a new Christmas Dress this year. After making a Christmas outfit 2 years ago, I really got into it. My husband even said that he liked my tradition of making a new Christmas Outfit every year! The funny thing is that I didn't even realize it had become something of a 'thing' for me to sew an outfit for Christmas.

So last Friday I went through my stash in search of a suitable pattern. Before long, I came across Butterick B6018, a vintage reproduction of a dress that was very popular in 1966 - according to a lady on social media. My previous experiences with repro patterns weren't very good, so I asked around on FB before making it. Surprisingly though, the fit was pretty spot-on from the first round of sewing!

Before I made my wearable muslin (to be posted on the blog), I took 2cm out of the back and shortened the skirt 2 cm (7/8") and did a sway back alteration (-2cm/-7/8" at the center back at the waist, located in the back-skirts in this pattern). After making my muslin, I took another 10 cm off the skirt and sewed a 1cm (3/8") hem instead of the required 5cm (2") hem. I also reshaped the shoulders by taking 1,5cm (5/8") off the bodice front and back at the shoulders, tapering to 0 mid-shoulder.

I'm in love with this pattern. It came together pretty quick and had a really nice silhouette. It is a figure-flattering classic, not too tight in the waist. It features a zipper at the left side, per instructions this is a normal zipper, but I made an invisible one out of it.  Even though I didn't have to make any alterations as to the size, it would be very easy to do so. Even though I love it, I only would make it again when this Christmas Dress has had it's time or when the wearable muslin is in need of replacement.

Oh, and before I forget: the fabric used for this one is a dark blue satin for the bodice and underskirt. The topskirt is made out of a see through polyester fabric, but I forgot how it was called.

Friday, November 3, 2017

The Gable Top

I was on a roll last september. After I made the Chai Shirt Dress, I immediately started on the Gable Top. This one has been on my to-do-list for a while now. As soon as I saw this fabric, I knew what I wanted to make out of it. So I bought the fabric and then waited a whole month before I actually made it.

This Gable Top pattern from Jennifer Lauren Handmade is soooooo easy to make! It was the second time I tried a pattern from Jennifer Lauren Handmade and she didn't disappoint. I didn't have to alter it the slightest bit. Her instructions are clear and easy to follow, just like with the Laneway Dress (Version 1 and Version 2). All in all, I think this is an Indie pattern maker that I'll be following more closely. With the Laneway dress I hardly had to alter anything and the different bust sizes are a real treat!

This already has become a stable in my casual wardrobe. As soon as I find fabric that I like, I'll be making this comfy and warm t-shirt again.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Remembering WW1

In august my husband and I went to different memorials of the Great War in Belgium. I took a myriad of photographs whilst visiting gravesides, battlefields and museums. I made a little selection to give you an impression of our trip.

Note: all photographs are of my own creation and may not be used by anyone else without my explicit concent.

Start of our trip

Statue in memory of King Albert I. During the war in 1914-1918 he joined his forces on the battlefield.

At the statue of King Albert I there's a monument for his wife Queen Elisabeth too. She joined the field hospitals and tended the wounded.

Massgraves at Vladslo - Belgium

Mourning Elder Couple at Vladslo, Belgium

View from the Iron Tower at Diksmuide, Belgium.

View on the Iron Tower, with the AVV - VVK monument through the Peace gate.

The 'Dodengang' (Backlash?) at Diksmuide, Belgium

The 'Dodengang' (Backlash?) at Diksmuide, Belgium

The 'Dodengang' (Backlash?) at Diksmuide, Belgium

Replica of a shooting trench at the museam of Passchendaele, Zonnebeke, Belgium

Replica of an A-framed trench at the museum of Passchendaele, Zonnebeke, Belgium

View on a trench at the museum of Passhendaele, Zonnebeke, Belgium

Unique view of a preserved British dug-out underneath the Church of Zonnebeke. It's accessible for 100 days until they'll let it flood again in october/november 2017.

Australian memorial and graveside.

View on Australian graveside.

Bayernwald, Wijtschate, Belgium

Bayernwald, Wijtschate, Belgium. View on a German fortified bunker

Belfort of Ypres

View on Ypres and the once battlefields from the Belfort of Ypres

New Church of Ypres with remnants of the original Church.

New Church of Ypres, build with and on the ruins of the original Church

Friday, September 29, 2017

The Chai Dress v1: Wearable Muslin

I really had the hang in sewing dresses, this summer. After the Cyan Cocktail Dress, the Laneway Dress V1 and V2 and the second Tiki-dress (a complete replica of this one), I decided I needed another one. Shirt dresses had been popping up in my sewing feeds, but I never had the courage to sew one up. Not because I'm afraid of the buttonholes or the other shirt-features, but because I wasn't sure it would suit me. And then suddenly I received an e-mail from Itch-To-Stitch announcing their newest pattern: the Chai Shirt and Dress.

I immediately fell for it and wanted to try and make my own. So I put my other sewing plans on hold (soon to be blogged) and sewed this baby up in about 3 evenings, of which the last evening was spend sewing the buttons on! All I can say is that I'm very pleased with this pattern and am planning to make more, perhaps even a winter version. Such a quick sewing project with stunning results. My husband also loves this one because it's something I don't usually wear.

As far as changes go: this pattern comes with different bust sizes, so I didn't have to do an FBA. According to the sizing, I had to go with bust C and size 8. Then I did my regular alterations: -1cm (- 3/8 inch) on the front piece, - 1 cm (- 3/8 inch) at the side of the back piece 'till -2,5 cm (-1 inch) at the center back of the back piece. I didn't alter anything else for this round.

Overall, this came out very nice and was an easy sew. For the next one, I would shorten the skirt with 5 cm (2 inches), just so it's a bit more flattering on my posture. And then there is the waist of which I'm not sure. I think it needs another -1 cm ( - 3/8 inch) to hit my natural waist. But that waist is right at the bottom of the waistband. Because of the narrow space on the waistband, I don't think I'll be able to take 1 cm (3/8 inch) from it. Taking it from the top isn't an option either: I already altered it and any more alteratoins would make the seam fall on my bust instead of underneath it.  So I'm not sure if I should shorten the waistband or not.

How do you guys like my different colored buttons? It was more out of necessity than fashion, but I quite like how this looks. But those buttons sure did come at a price. I stabbed myself at least 4 times! If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you probably read all about it! Check it out here on Facebook and here on Instagram!

Sunday, September 24, 2017

The Laneway Dress V2: Pretty in Pink

Right after I finished my wearable muslin on the Laneway Dress from Jennifer Lauren Handmade, I started sewing my second version of this pattern. Did I mention that I really, really love this pattern? Jennifer has a keen eye on flattering garments with a vintage flair. Aside from the Laneway Dress I purchased the Gable Top a couple of months ago, to give knit fabric another chance. After a few projects that I just didn't wear (like this and others I never blogged about) and even fewer that I do wear (like these 2), I sort of have a love-hate relationship with knits. Yep, I love knitting and creating beautiful sweaters and the likes, but when it comes to sewing with knits... I just don't know... but with clear instructions from the Laneway Dress, I'm looking forward to sewing the Gable Top.

But let's get back to the Laneway Dress: I really love this pattern. After the muslin I wanted a plain version with a contrast collar and 2 buttons so all the beautiful details could be admired. And yet again: I loved it! Except for the poor fabric choice: the pink cotton shone a bit through, so I decided to underline it, but did a bad job at that. I wanted to wear it as soon as possible, so I rushed it a bit, thereby stretching both layers, with some bulk as a result. Luckily, it's not really that visible to the unpracticed eye ;-)

This time I shortened the waist with another cm (3/8 inch) and narrowed the shoulders by 1 cm (3/8 inch). On the muslin, I noticed the release pleats being a bit too high, so I also shortened them with 1 cm (3/5 inch). So the only real adaption I did to this pattern, was lowering the release pleats under the bust. The other adjustments (adjusting the waist placement and the center back) are changes that I always need to do, so those don't count.

I'll say it one more time: I love, love, LOVE this pattern! Onto the next one!

Saturday, August 19, 2017

The Akita Blouse #2

After I made Seamwork's Akita Blouse over a year ago, I knew I would make another version of it. It's just so simple and easy to make. Perfect for a quick and satisfying project.

Even though I said that I needed to define the waist next time, I didn't to it this time. I just like how this looks when tucked in a skirt or highwaisted trousers, so I didn't bother with that adjustment. The only thing I struggled with this time, was the biais I used for finishing the neckline. The color matched perfectly, but I should've gone for a smaller size. That way, the neckline would've been easier to sew, causing me less fidgeting and some words I shall not repeat.

Just like before: I love it and will make it again, when one of these two needs replacement.

PS: Be sure to follow me on social media so you never miss a thing! Instagram Facebook

Friday, July 28, 2017

The Cyan Cocktail Dress

Today's post will be a short one. This dress is a true TNT-pattern (Tried and True): it's the 5th time that I've made it! So, if you're curious about the pattern, check it out here and here.

For my sister's wedding - one month after my own - I needed a new dress. 3 days before I decided I wanted to make it myself. To spare me the trouble of adapting a new pattern, I went with a classic for me. The Danielle Dress is classy and depending of the fabric it is perfect to wear to more formal occasions. I used fabric from my stash - stash-busting, anyone? - and purchased a matching zipper. 2 days later, this dress was ready! Oh, the joy of using a well-known pattern!

After that, I wore it to one other occasions: our National Holiday with a tribute to our veterans and people who are still in active duty. Really liked it and on both occasions I felt very classy, paired with a red purse and red shoes.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

The Laneway Dress - V1: Wearable Muslin

So, I know it has been a while since I blogged anything over here. I have been sewing lately, but no projects that I deemed succesful enough to put here. If you wonder what I have made, be sure to check out my Instagram of Facebook!

Aside from failed sewing projects, there are a few other reasons I didn't blog since January: I quit my job and started somewhere else, I had 3 (!) weddings to attend to in 1 month, including my own and my younger sister's. Those who got married will know that weddings take lots and lots of planning, especially those last few months. I wanted to make my very own paper flowers to decorate the room and fabric flowers to decorate the church. Oh, how I hated myself and those flowers! My dress was divine (check Instagram ) and I loved everything about my wedding. But I'm glad it's over and I'm able to focus back on sewing.

So far for the recap of the latest and greatest. Now, back to the stuff that matters! Last week, I finished the Laneway Dress from Jennifer Lauren Handmade. It is a classic A-line dress with an interesting collar that gives you a vintage vibe. I really loved the fit and how easily it came together. The only 'downside' to this pattern, was what fabric you needed to cut the pieces out. Every pattern piece just said 'fashion fabric' of 'interfacing',. But the collar was best made with a contrasting fashion fabric. Although a more experienced sewist might know this beforehand, I usually just do what the patterns tells me to do first time round. A small side note for a otherwise perfect pattern.

The pattern comes with different bust sizes (A - D). I really loved this, since I didn't have to do a FBA (full bust adjustment). I did have to shorten the back with 1 inch (2,5cm) - as usual - and I shortened the waist with 3/8 inch (1cm) - a little less than usual. I'm not sure if I brought the waist up enough. It looks good when I wear it, as you cannot see my tummy, but I'm used to the waist being on my natural waist, not 3/8 inch (1cm) to 5/8 inch (1,5cm) below it. Aside from that, I need to take in the shoulders 3/8 inch (1cm). But that's all I did when I adapted the pattern - which truly isn't much. The instructions are very clear and easy to follow.

I'll be making at least one more of this, perhaps even 2. This is a new TNT (Tried-and-True) pattern, I absolutely love the overall feel of it!

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

A very Tree Blouse

Because I simply didn't have time, it took me 2 weeks to blog about my latest make. The last part of my Vintage Pledge 2016 was finished on the very last day of the year: December 31!

The pattern has been lying around cut out and ready to go for a while, but my Birthday Dress and other projects that I have yet to blog about, has put this one on hold. I used Butterick 5015 in size 16 (bust 36 inches) and was planning on making view B. It looked a bit like a Polo and I thought it was more interesting than just a blouse. I ended up making view A with short sleeves because I forgot to follow the instructions for view B and ended up making view A. Because I didn't want to use my seamripper, I left it at that and am happy I did!

Thanks to the release pleats in the front and back, this blouse fits me perfectly. A few years ago I made 3 other blouses with the same or similar technique. And I have to admit: I fell in love all over again. This technique lets the fabric drape as it should around your body without all the hassle of normal pleats. Waaaaay easier with the same beautiful results. This technique was also used for the back, with it's advantages: you are able to move around without feeling restrained when you reach for something. Last but not least: there are some darts at the shoulders to give a proper shaping to the front and back

As far as alterations go: I didn't do any! Next time, I will take 1 cm (aprox. 3/8") at the highest point on the shoulders and shorten the back a bit. But yet again: Vintage patterns seem to be made especially for me! Very easy and satisfying to make. Even though I do like to adapt a pattern and make it my own, sometimes I get frustrated by the time it needs. Perfectionist Me and Impatient Me in a clinch :-)

Concluding: Even though I'm still in doubt with my fabric choice, I looooove this pattern!