Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Nothing is New under the Sun

Everyone is putting up inspiration photos and planning out spring sewing.
I can put up some inspiration photos, and some I just find plain fascinating, but I'm at the point where I need to not plan too far ahead in my sewing. I'm coming off 9 mos of PLANNED sewing, and I want some spontaneity right now. I want to sew what the spirit moves me to sew.
That is likely to change on a daily basis.
And, I still have something like 30 garments to get made for my sister in swift succession.
Anyway, on to some eye candy and then todays project:

The dress on the left is in the University of Virginia's Collection of Historic Dress
(do go take a minute to look at the collection. total Eye candy.)
The dress on the right is on the cover of the current issue of Cadena, the Spanish fashion magazine that sells fabrics through Fishmans here in the US. (those links may or may not work, I've edited so many times they don't look right anymore)

Tuleh dress

Tuleh dress that is on my radar. I think I know exactly which fabric I'm going to use.
I'm thinking this silk chiffon/satin stripe print that I picked up in Traverse City before I moved here will work chiffon FFD
I'm finally settling down to not fighting my figure but sewing what I know works on my shape - and this is one. Like the pattern? It's vintage 1980's. I'm seeing a lot of 80's influence on the runways now.

Next up is This Bottega Veneta that has been on my radar too since it walked the runway. How nice of KnipMode to reproduce the pattern, and many thanks to Sigrid for pointing the way there to me.
It's very reminiscent of a dress that I made in 1979-1980(?) out of lemon yellow Qiana. I wore that dress until it fell apart. I loved it. And, I've looked high and low without success, trying to find the pattern. I must have let go of it somewhere along the line. Well, I was lamenting this fact to my friend Sharron earlier this week, and what did she do, but call me back 4 hours later saying she had it in her pattern stash - uncut still in factory folds in the envelope. WooHoo! I'm seeing her Friday morning (oh, that's tomorrow) and picking it up from her.

Meanwhile, I'm taking a sewing day for me today. (I'll still finish hand sewing in the lining tonight on my sisters jacket, but today, It's all about ME).

In the washer right now, on delicate setting, is the Anna Sui silk gauze that many of us got from Fabric Mart when they had all that fabric for $4.99/yd
Well, if you have a piece of it, I'm here to tell you that I'm very disappointed, upon getting it out to work with it today - to find that the print is seriously off-grain.
There is a reason those fabrics were selling so cheaply. (and there is a reason that 90% of my stash is Not cheap fabric).

I pulled a thread this morning, and evened up the edges to check grain. This is how far off the print register is.
this is an odd piece. I've never worked with anything quite like it.
the yarns are crimped, much like the yarns used to weave crepe

But the weave structure is plain

and fairly open, creating a fairly sheer fabric.

I'll let you know at the end of the day what I've decided to do with it.


Nancy K said...

I bought some of those fabrics too, especially the scarf panels to make, scarves out of. Yeah one piece is seriously off grain too. Cheap is often cheap for a reason, I agree. Which is why I am always leery of really cheap. I don't mind spending for beautiful goods. My time is valuable and I want to get my money's worth!

Birgitte said...

Such a great post, Marji! And very timely. Just teared inspirations out of magazines couple of days ago, and one is a YELLOW Carven dress, pleated to paradise :-) yeah I'm stuck on pleats at the moment.

A shame about the off grain. You're right about the price versus quality, and I'll go with the latter as long as I can afford it. I'm glad you're sewing for yourself again :-) I can see those dresses on you- very pretty indeed!

And I do like the pattern- and the 80's :-)

HTH, Birgitte

Cennetta said...

I really enjoy looking at the eye candy. Cadena is one of my favorites. That historic dress is divine.

I, too, am glad you are sewing for yourself. It can be difficult when you have competing projects and other priorities to think about doing something for yourself. I think that's partly the reason why I have so many UFO's. lol You have selected some very nice project options here. Sewing free style is great. Sometimes deadlines and/or commitment make sewing a little stressful when it should be fun and relaxing.

I know the finish garment will be lovely. Happy sewing!

AllisonC said...

Great post, full of inspiration and eye candy. While I am hoping for more planning in my sewing, 9 months of it is something I will never be able to do, just can't stay that focussed unfortunately. it is impressive, but I hope you now have some fun making something for yourself.

Carolyn (cmarie12) said...

Can I say something in defense of "cheap" fabrics...I think you have to "know" which cheap fabrics to buy and not be persuaded by the pretty pictures. I have none of this in my collection and most of the Anna Suis that I bought were purchased for lining garments...yeah, yeah I know fabrics need to be on grain for linigs too but if the print is a little cockeyed in the lining who cares?! Okay maybe some people do but you know what I mean...

I guess I'm just rambling here to say that you have to "know" what to buy cheaply and what not to!

However, I am sure that whatever you finally decide to make from this piece will be awesome!

melissa said...

I'm interested to see what you make with that last fabric, as the Ikea birch curtains I fell in love with have a similar open weave that's got me stumped (though those most definitely aren't silk and are a little stiffer even after washing).

Jessica said...

Oh my! I love love love that vintage dress! Don't know where I would ever wear it but it's gorgeous. What about in white for a wedding dress?

Becky said...

That eye candy dress reminds me so much of my favorite dress from Rami's collection on this season of Project Runway... *love*

paco peralta said...

Marji .- I love all their proposals. I love these vintage dresses, especially the patron Geoffrey Beene, is one of my favorite designers. Tissue which shows you in the picture looks like a mat? Perhaps its ease undone. Thanks for the link to the historical dress is fabulous. Greetings and see you soon. Paco

Meg said...

The Nina Ricci pattern is so classic and pretty. It will work forever, I think.

The Slapdash Sewist said...

I've had that Tuleh in my inspiration file since it walked the runway. Thanks for posting your Geoffrey Beene pattern--makes me think it will be much easier to reproduce than I thought. I can just do it as a sack with side ties. I didn't even think of that! Hmmmmm

Tany said...

I have that issue of Cadena and it's a great source of inspiration! I love almost everything from it and the fabrics are TDF!

Anonymous said...

I'm willing to buy that black and white chiffon striped dress if is size 9-10 and you want to sell it.
Please let me know