Sunday, March 27, 2016

Anna/Elisalex/Darling Ranges mush

Hello sewers! Do any other Nancy Mitford fans out there hear Uncle Matthew saying "damned sewers" whenever they read that? 

Here I am again with yet another blue chambray dress... this bodice started out as an Anna hack - here are my first and second versions. The neckline wasn't working that well with the facings I'd drafted: the points were un-crisp and more curved that pointed. Then somewhere in blogland I read about making a placket using Megan Nielsen's neckline drafting from the Darling Ranges dress (which was one of my earliest sewing projects). 

So I tacked that onto the centre front of my Anna hack, and I'm much happier with the neckline now - it's an excellent way to bind a neckline, and I generally prefer bias binding to facing anyway, as my facing tends to get a bit bunched up, try as I might. The skirt is the Elisalex, with a bit of dart moving to match the bodice, and 2 1/4" added to the front to make the button placket. And I shortened the skirt quite a bit.

The fabric is from Classic Textiles on Goldhawk Road, and the buttons from Shepherds Bush Market. I had to add a hook and eye on the torso as it was all kinds of gaping; perhaps I could widen the pattern a little there for the next time - which there will be.

I did have pause about using the Elisalex skirt, as although I love the shape, I wondered if the more casual look of a button-through might look weird with the dressier tulip shape. 

And perhaps it does! But I like it! Is it fancy?? Is it casual??? WHO KNOWS???!?

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Simplicity 1880 AGAIN

Hello! I hope you are having good Easter weekends. I've spent the past two days sewing, and I'm actually feeling like I might have ODed a bit - I was having weird dreams last night about plackets (really) and feeling a bit antsy and rushed, so I'm going to give it a rest for a bit! 

This frenzy is a result of having three weddings and an 80th birthday party coming up soon, and wanting fun homemade things to wear to all - I may have to accept this will not be possible, and I may have to resort to *gasp* old ready-to-wear...

Anyway, enter another Simplicity 1880. And I promise I won't keep saying this - but I really don't like the finished dress! Sad really, as it turned out how I imagined, complete with with a Premo (a polymer clay like Fimo but I think less brittle) belt buckle and matching brooch, love-themed for the first wedding!

I've not much more to say about this pattern after my last two. The fabric was a striped chambray from Miss Matatabi, and lack of fabric meant improvising with some piecing on the front and back skirt, making the v-shapes which I was happy with. I'm not sure where the dress goes wrong for me - I think perhaps I hemmed it too short, and something about the pinstripe looks a bit formal. All in all, a bit blah... 

This is before hemming... rats! Now I see the pics near each other, seems obvious that the longer length was better... CURSES! Live and learn... or, as I prefer to do, live and NOT learn!

But on a positive note --->

I was really happy with my belt buckle and brooch vision! I can see myself wearing the brooch a lot, and I made some more shapes to paint up in the future. I'm going through a brooch stage at the moment!

This is the white Premo after it's been in the oven for an hour. Then a few layers of acrylic paint and a couple of coats of clear nail varnish (haven't yet found a satisfactory gloss water-based varnish yet... any steers would be most welcome!) and it looks super, I think!

Hearts and smooches. Happy Easter all!