Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Moving on...

I will get to the review of making the MOG dress, the coat (that didn't get worn because it was raining, and rain doesn't play well with silk velvet) and the brides jacket.
And I'll get back with commentary and hopefully pics of the MOB suit I'm making now.

But, moving forward, the question has been asked, am I going to sew for SWAP this year.

I don't know. I seriously need clothes that both fit me now and are suitable for work. I'm working in a pretty high end interior design shop, selling the window treatment fabrics and workroom services. There are a couple of ASID designers working there, as well as several of us more lowly types. Very chic shop, chic clientele, high end stuff...and looking "designer" is the name of the dressing game there.
The clothes that I own that fit that description are all too small for me at the moment, so the dictate Sew for the body you have Now is a great rule.

However, I'm struggling with the separates issue, and the 11 garments. I really want/need more dresses in my closet. SWAP rules this year don't allow for dresses, unless they can be worn over a shirt or pants. I'm too old to be wearing dresses over jeans. That is a college coed look, IMO.
Ditto with jumpers.
And, I want to sew with the fabrics that I currently own - sew up the stash!
I have capsules of fabric that will make fabulous mini-wardrobes, but I don't know about 11 coordinated separates without having to add to the stash. Especially since those I do have all have pieces designated for dresses.

So, the answer is, probably not.
Contest sewing is fun. But I need to worry more about what I need to actually get dressed every AM than about meeting a set of rules.

So what about you? Are you sewing SWAP? If not, then why not?

Monday, October 27, 2008

They're married

And I never even put a camera in my hand. So the pics I have are collected from those my dear husband took as well as some my brother took. Hopefully I'll add to the collection in the next few days.
These are a few of my favorites, there are more pictures here on flickr

First up, since I know that most everyone who reads this blog is interested in the sewing and the Dress! the above pic is the composite that I'll use in the review on Pattern Review.

Ashlee and Daniel
Mark and Megan dancing

Daniel and I
Mark, Daniel and I at the church
Mom and her husband Richard

I'm writing this in an internet cafe.
This week I'm staying up in Traverse City to sew (big surprise), I'll be making the suit for my BFF Jacquie to wear as the Mother of the Bride in January.
I'll get back to catching up with blogging and reading blogs when I get home, next week.

Meanwhile, thank you for looking.

Monday, October 20, 2008


OK, I'm off Dancing...

My dress is done except for handstitching the hem. The brides velvet jacket is done, unless I decide to add some beaded embellishment between now and Saturday, I reserve that right.
And my velvet coat....may or may not make it.

As soon as I finish packing the car I'm outa here.

See you in November.

Friday, October 17, 2008

a moment out of time


too dang funny:

Your result for Are You a Jackie or a Marilyn? Or Someone Else? Mad Men-era Female Icon Quiz...You Are a Katharine!

You are a Katharine -- "I am happy and open to new things"

Katharines are energetic, lively, and optimistic. They want to contribute to the world.

How to Get Along with Me

  • * Give me companionship, affection, and freedom.

  • * Engage with me in stimulating conversation and laughter.

  • * Appreciate my grand visions and listen to my stories.

  • * Don't try to change my style. Accept me the way I am.

  • * Be responsible for youself. I dislike clingy or needy people.

  • * Don't tell me what to do.

What I Like About Being a Katharine

  • * being optimistic and not letting life's troubles get me down

  • * being spontaneous and free-spirited

  • * being outspoken and outrageous. It's part of the fun.

  • * being generous and trying to make the world a better place

  • * having the guts to take risks and to try exciting adventures

  • * having such varied interests and abilities

What's Hard About Being a Katharine

  • * not having enough time to do all the things I want

  • * not completing things I start

  • * not being able to profit from the benefits that come from specializing; not making a commitment to a career

  • * having a tendency to be ungrounded; getting lost in plans or fantasies

  • * feeling confined when I'm in a one-to-one relationship

Katharines as Children Often

  • * are action oriented and adventuresome

  • * drum up excitement

  • * prefer being with other children to being alone

  • * finesse their way around adults

  • * dream of the freedom they'll have when they grow up

Katharines as Parents

  • * are often enthusiastic and generous

  • * want their children to be exposed to many adventures in life

  • * may be too busy with their own activities to be attentive

Take Are You a Jackie or a Marilyn? Or Someone Else? Mad Men-era Female Icon Quiz at HelloQuizzy

Monday, October 06, 2008


It's coming along. Needs shoulder pads and sleeve heads, hemming, topstitching, buttonholes and belts (yes, belts - the sleeves are "belted". I need to either find belt buckles or send my belts to CA to get them made, ASAP). Oh, and the rest of the lining needs to be stitched in. I should be able to wear this while in TC at the end of the month.

Meanwhile, yesterday I graded out the MOG dress pattern (of course it's vintage and so the size isn't right), and got the prelim muslin made.
There were some surprises. The front of the skirt has pleated tucks emanating diagonally from the CF seam. Who knew? The illustration on the pattern envelope focuses on the back, and the front is not really visible, except in a black drawing, and there are no line drawings.

my front pattern piece - sorry, it's hard to photograph tissue tracing paper.

the instruction sheet.

I haven't muslined the skirt. I was playing with the bodice. I'm really considering just putting the front on the fold and eliminating that pleat business. I don't really think I need emphasis on the bit of tummy that I'm wearing industrial strength Spanx to try to control. :)
The bodice CF also has an unnecessary (In my eyes) seam too - which I've eliminated by placing it on the fold. Since the CF is on the straight of grain, both in the skirt and the bodice, what would be the point of a CF seam? Especially in this solid color silk.
I've got to still work a bit on the whole underarm / sleeve portion

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Choice made - Song

I've been needing to turn in my choice for song for the mother/groom dance for the wedding.


You'll Be Blessed, a song I used to dance around the living room with my babies on my hips with, and sing to them.

I'm going to cry, I know it.

Second choice:
have a listen (and look)
I Hope You Dance

Friday, October 03, 2008

Starting the Mother of the Groom ensemble

ok, In addition to trying to finish up this jacket and make the pants that go with it - since I really want to have it to take with me when I go north Oct 18, I'm starting my muslin today for my mother of the groom dress. Why did I leave it so late? Because I planned to lose weight.
Planned is the operative word here. In reality, I'm only down 10 lbs. Not enough, but it's too late now to lament the fact.
I just talked with Cidell, and in the conversation finally counted days til I leave - 15.
Sewing I need to have done before I go:
  1. Ashlee's velvet jacket for over the wedding gown - muslin made, jacket construction will be easy
  2. My dress
  3. My coat/wrap/something
  4. hopefully this burgundy wool Guy Laroche jacket I've been working on
  5. a pair of pants to go with the burgundy jacket.
Did I mention that of those 15 days before I leave, I have to work 6 of them. Looks like I need to burn some midnight oil.
I will be blogging progress. It's the accountability, you know?

The dress decision is made, the fabric acquired, and approval from the bride and MOB obtained.

Evadress Pattern 4057

I'll post pics of my fabrics this weekend. Right now they're tightly wound on tubes.

I'm also planning on making a wrap/coat of some type from some silk velvet I had on hand, that happens to exactly match the silks for my dress.
I just picked up the Folkwear patterns for the cocoon coats, but still also have these two patterns in mind. I need to make a decision before the weekend is over.

Option 1

EvaDress pattern 1965

Option 2.

Decades of Style Parisienne coat

Option 3.
The Poiret Cocoon that's just been re-issued
And, just looking at it now, I'm realizing that the narrow hem of this cocoon coat and the A-line flared hem of the dress are totally incompatible.

Option 4.
The sunrise Cocoon from Folkware -
View B is waist length, so this might still be an option.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

New Vogue Patterns are Up

First, I have been making slow progress on my Jacket V2922
Collar and belt carriers
Below: inside of jacket.

Secondly, I'd like to thank everyone who took the time to respond to my query about classes.
I've submitted a proposal list, and next week will have a discussion with the class coordinator to see what she actually will put in the newsletter and on the schedule.
The demographics are likely very similar to the store where I taught last. EFF is no longer there, and this store is only 10 miles distant from the old EFF location. Who will take these classes? Over 50, empty nesters who've left garment sewing and want to get back into it. And a Very FEW younger women, no children yet, who are catching the crafting craze or have fit issues themselves and want to learn. At EFF, One of my favorite students was a woman in her late 20's who was 6'1" and very fit. She wanted to make clothes that would fit her tall frame.
Another was a private student I had who was a beautifully put-together professional woman who wears a 4x. She wanted to reproduce the Escandar looks she'd been buying at Neimans and Saks.
Based on previous experience then, and the class coordinators statement "we don't have as much call for garment sewing classes anymore" I can safely say that technique classes won't fly. As many times as we tried to offer them at EFF, no one wants to sit down and make a swatch book and learn fine sewing techniques around here. At least not enough to take a class to do it.
Everyone wants to walk out with a project they can wear. The exception to this is fitting. There is a tremendous cry for fitting. I used to add a week to my class and try to accomplish fitting within the context of the project. I'm now going to try it the way I listed, and see if it's more effective. And make the fitting class a prereq to a garment class if fitting is a major concern.
to answer the other questions:
  • all the fabric and materials should be purchased on site from the store hosting the classes
  • I will have samples made up for every class on display prior to class registration time - it's a requirement
  • I'm not going to teach sewing with ultrasuede - I've never used it! And, they have people to teach craft projects, I'm being added on to teach garment sewing.

New Vogue patterns are up!
See the whole offering
It seems it's a fairly subdued offering,
or maybe it's the mood I'm in. I'll probably be
picking this up to make up late this fall, towards December.

This dress reminds me a lot of the
Roland Mouret dresses,
and it's a silhouette I like a lot.
Notice the darts sewn on the right side (public side) of the garment.
Note to self: get back to the gym!

Another body conscious look -
this is a Betzina design.