Saturday, April 22, 2017

Metropolitan Urban Gypsy Dress

The Twins are really into the cold shoulder look.
Elsa wanted a slinky dress for dressing up and down.
She decided on the Hot Patterns Urban Gypsy blouse
Originally we looked at a Style Arc dress. It was beautiful but Elsa's measurement put her over 3 sizes and they only sell one.
Elsa emailed them for help (as suggested on the site) but we didn't hear back.
I have since seen Lara's version and I think we could have got away with it, c'est la vie.
I drafted the size 8 top and and blended it to the 10 at the hips.
I lengthened the tunic to a dress, by 5 inches, at the hip line.
The recommended elastic length was spot on!
I took a lot of care with the ties and hems, taking the time to do a tiny narrow hem.

It took forever and my poor fingers were singed by the iron but it gives a lovely, expensive feel.
The tunic has a very clever, built in, shelf bra.
I was going to skip it but watched a video explaining how a strapless bra is just not as good so I gave it a go.
In a nut shell, the strapless bra falls down and pulls your boobs down, a shelf bra doesn't.
It fits together really nicely and Elsa has a small bust so I wasn't too worried about support (or lack of it)
She reports it is very, very comfortable as well as very secure.
The cleverest part of this dress is the fabric that my very clever daughter chose.
Elsa wanted a floral rayon and I didn't have any in my stash. I did have several metres of pj satin that she ferreted out.
I dissuaded her, remarking it was a 'Nana' fabric.
She asked why we couldn't just flip it, satin on the inside, matte on the outside?

~Elsa's Verdict~
Theres not much to say that the photos don't! Isn't it just amazing?
The length isn't too short that makes the splits appropriate not skanky.
 I love love love it and many of my friends want one! Thanks Mum!!!! x

Well, there we are.
I think she looks amazing.

xx N

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Just So Much...

So much pink and so many ruffles...
The back story.
Hand-me-downs are no longer working so well for Liddy. She is as tall as her sisters but much slimmer through the hips and way broader through her back.
Her style aesthetic is completely different too. They were quite 'goth' at this age. Liddy likes pretty, bohemian style clothing.
Blouse available from

The inspiration.
A pretty, shell pink, viscose blouse priced at $60.
I realised I had seen something very similar and after searching, found an 80's McCalls pattern.
The mods.
Although Liddy is very slim I went with the size 14, she has wide shoulders and assured me I couldn't make it full enough.
I went with View A, omitting the collar and adding self drated ties.
Liddy wanted an elastic cuff so I overlaid the View A sleeve with the View D sleeve, altered the edge to match and made a new pattern piece.
The fabric.
I thought I had some shell pink crepe in my stash but was very cross when I realised I had recently donated it. Grrrr, isn't that the way? #curseyoukonmari 
I priced some online but it was going to be around $40, with postage.
Then I remembered I had a large piece of rayon, cream coloured, from an estate de-stash.
It is well known that Nicole Keller does 'a bit of sewing'. When people clean out their cupboards, they give it to me.
Once I had a verandah full and it took me a month to sort it!
I had a container of dyes (again given to me) and there was a pink one... so I thought I would give it a go.
I did it in my washing machine, so easy.
The pink was a bit bright for my taste but Liddy was happy (and hopefully is will tone down with a few washes)
I kept the button front as Lidia suggested she could wear it as a soft jacket over her swimmers.
MoP buttons, of course. 
I went with tiny, double hems throughout and used some pre-made bias for the elastic casing.
I didn't get the ties quite right but they sit okay.
It will even tie a nice bow if she wants to go as Miss Moneypenny for book week.
Lidia wore it for casual day, today, with skinny jeans.
I have some khaki trousers to sew next, to wear with it.
I was a little concerned she would look like an extra from a Peter Allen tribute show but it really only cost my time and I enjoyed sewing it.
It took around 5 hours but I rarely sew ruffles and pink-iness and I really enjoyed it!
So, if it doesn't get worn, oh well.
~Lidia's Verdict~
When Mummy made me the shirt I was overjoyed. At first we didn't have the right fabric but then mum dyed some beautiful white rayon fabric with a little bit of pink dye and we got the perfect colour for my capsule wardrobe. 
Mummy is going to make some lovely khaki coloured trousers to go with it. 
I love how the arms are so puffy and the frills on the bust. Today I wore the shirt to casual day for the end of term one.

I think she copped a few 'pirate' jokes but she didn't seen too fussed. Told her she didn't have to wear it again and she scoffed and said 'What do boys know, they wore school uniform on casual day'

Love this girl.

xx N

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

More Vintage, Baby

Far too cute not to sew again.
I think these dungarees remain my favourite thing ever!
Warm, machine washable wool, Trixie utterly flogged them and then they were sent off to Baby Ock du Spock.
I tracked down a larger size, internationally and made an almost identical pair.
 I lined them with lawn again, for comfort and used  Liberty for the facings.
I used coral lawn and slightly different buttons.
But the cute factor is still through the roof!
Essential pockets lined with Liberty.
Zipper up the back for speedy dressing.
I sewed Beatrix the size 2 (I have a tracing of the size 1 thanks to the lovely Ock du Spock) and they fit, just, but not for long.
Hopefully they will get through Winter, at least  with a disposable nappy. 

xx N

Monday, April 10, 2017

Vintage, Baby

I really don't need to sew for Trixie.
Between hand-me-downs from her siblings and so many gorgeous outfits from my sewing friends, you know you are you fabulous people, she needs little.
However, something she did need was a fabulous little statement piece to show off this gorgeous unicorn wool vest her Aunty Sarvi made her.
I have had this pattern waiting, just waiting for her to be big enough.
I sewed it up in a pure linen remnant from the Spotters bin.
It is a grey/greeny colour, very neutral.
The back (take note of those gorgeous wee darts at the neck, waist and elbows) closes with a zipper and I used elastic roulette with hessian buttons.
It may seem an odd choice for a baby but I am thrilled with the result.
It goes perfectly with the tweed Puppet Show shorts (also from Sarvi) and her vintage dungarees I recently sewed.
I have a precious piece of white linen broderie which  I think I may have sew up another in.

Thank you for reading!

xx N

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Lekala #5166 AKA My Posh Frock.

Well, I finished it.
And it is beautiful, from the front...
(More on that directly)
image from Pinterest
TL-DR I needed a new posh frock and loved the one pictured above.
I ordered a made to measure Lekala  dress pattern and muslin fit 
The gorgeous lace I purchased from eBay.
The silk satin was from DK Fabric  
As I had enough satin, I self lined. I can never see the point in making a natural fibre garment and using a synthetic lining.
I attached the lining at the neck, graded the seams and under stitched before hand sewing the rest in place.
I hemmed the sleeve lining a wee bit shorter but left some ease for wearing comfort.
This dress is very comfortable.
I was so focused in lining up the lace across the back I completely forgot to check how the lace placement would look after the zipper was inserted.
Oh dear.
What was I thinking?
To be honest I didn't even notice until I was editing the photos and now I just cannot look away.
Very ugly, Le sigh.
Luckily I have really long hair.
I should be more disappointed, I invested a lot of time and money in this dress and I made a big mistake.
That centre back seam is majorly fug.
But I just love this dress.
It was 35+ degrees in the courtyard when I modelled this but I was still so cool.
It skims so nicely but has enough room I could easily gain a few kilos and still wear it.
The fit is perfect, no puddling at the back, the shoulders fit, the tummy doesn't pull, the waist sits on my waist.
In conclusion, a happy ending.
I love my new posh frock.

Thank you for reading.... xx N

Liberty 2+2

Liberty becomes a great deal more affordable when you can cut like a ninja (thanks lempobee)
I was beyond thrilled when I was able to jiggle a shirt and a 2+2 blouse from my 2 metre cut of Liberty from The Drapery.
Is there a lovelier little blouse then this one?
~I like to interface the front tab as well as popping a wee rectangle behind the front yoke that folds back~
I used riverstone buttons, wonderfully translucent, stitched with dark charcoal thread.
I do spend quite a bit of time fussing over my trims as I seem to get so little sewing time at present.
The 2+2 blouse is still available as a PDF and if you would like your hand held I have a step-by-step tutorial.

The blouse is a size 3 and will fit Beatrix next Summer.

xx N