Saturday, 28 August 2010

A Question about Silk

Stash silks waiting to be sewn

In a previous entry I mentioned that I have plans to make a jacket from some lovely silk velvet. My plan is to keep with the soft drapey nature of the material and not do much in the way of inner construction apart from interlining the whole jacket with silk organza bought online from Dharma Trading cheaper than I could buy it here. I hate paying too much for fabric and trust me, I research these things.
Also while searching under 'sewing with silk' I found this website with some useful information. If you read the bit about lining it says "Do not be tempted to line your silk garment with a synthetic lining" but to use silk.
Well my fellow sewists, to be honest before I read this I would have used a good quality (but synthetic) lining like Sunsilky. Does it really matter?
Should I just get sewing and do a normal lining...and just get on with it... We are talking PITA to sew velvet here. Or really lash out seeing I'm already interlining with silk - another first for me.
Has anyone actually sewn a silk lining?

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

More Simple Sewing

Dear Friends
On my way back to sewing wonderful impractical labour intensive jackets that I love I agreed to make some scrubs for a work colleague. Our scrub pants and tops are supplied and come in three sizes that supposedly fit all. I hope I hear you snickering out there.
They are cut the same for men and for women and don't really take into account the myriad of variation in height, weight and shape of the human body, let alone the female gender, so if you are tiny or busty or hippy or extra tall or even pregnant you are in for ill fitting work clothes. So I am making my friend custom made pants.
Don't get me wrong I know full well how to say "No" to sewing requests that I don't want to do but sometimes it just feels right to use one's abilities for Good Universal Karma (and a little remuneration.)

I'm using Kwik Sew 2807. It is beautifully drafted pattern as is the usual for this company. I left off the inseam pockets and just added one patch pocket to the back. Elastic casing at the waist and machine sewn hems makes them quick to make. Two more to go!

Ah but after that this is what I have planned for a trans-seasonal jacket that I hope will be something special.

I've had this pattern for a while. It has been successfully reviewed by a variety of people on I still haven't decided whether or not I will include the bow, I like the other collar complete with rose better. I have the most beautiful soft silk velvet that I bought from The Fabric Shop in Sydney two seasons ago. I've bought some crackly silk organza to use for underlining to give it body. I'll whip up a very basic muslin first.

My yummy light and drapey silk velvet.
Happy sewing!

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Some Simple Sewing

Dear Readers
While drooling over lovely drape drape patterns I was sewing up some simple work wear for my daughter.

This top is from the now out of print Vogue 2759. Since the photo I have taken it in along the arms a bit. I'd modified the pattern by using two of the slightly higher right fronts instead of the right front and the left front which are different in the pattern. I did not include most of the folded facing because I didn't have enough fabric. The result was luckily a drapey crossover that doesn't gape - what my daughter wanted.

There are gathers at the back of the neck. The back seam is another fabric squeezing strategy! 

Although there are pants in the Anne Klein  pattern these black pants are from Burda 8513. The straight skirt is from Burda WOF 104 June 02.

Please excuse the lack of daughter is not the most willing photgraphic subject, which is a pity but she did strip off her weekend jeans to model these with the heater going!
So that's what I've been doing. Bread and butter sewing. More flights of fancy will soon follow I promise!

Sunday, 1 August 2010

More Japanese Inspirations

Dear Reader
Some time ago when I was in the city I dropped into Tessuti, one of my two very favourite material stores in Sydney. Tessuti is where  I go if I want something special. For about a year now they have been carrying Mrs Stylebook magazine. I found Stylebook fascinating but easy to resist. Quirky off the wall fashion designed for the Japanese market does not always translate to the western body. ( well body.. that is) and the prohibitive cost and no English directions sealed the deal. There was one magazine that had a dress with an inverted funnel over the stomach. Innovative with a capital 'I'. I wish I'd taken photos. Some other stuff was nice, loose peasant pants and such.
Then I saw a book called 'drape drape' by Hisako Sato. ISBN978-4-579-11253-1 I'd tell you the publisher but I can't. Everything but the book title and the names of the garments is in Japanese.

Reader as you can see I bought the book because in amonst the unusual, floaty designs

and very bare designs

were some classically beautiful ones.

With line drawings

All the instructions of course, are in Japanese. I didn't care.Then at the back I found the patterns! Yes!
Even though they are all in one colour and will be twice as hard to trace as the new Burda's it is a lot easier than just having diagrams.

Oh and in amongst the quirky obligatory diaper pants - albeit with a nice top...another lovely dress.

No the model doesn't have six foot long legs.My photography is from a strange angle because the pages were all very glossy and this tended to cause flaring. Here's another cute dress...

You know why I couldn't resist? I've bought a book of ideas. The drape is already evident in the current pattern books. See B5329

or Vogue 1087, the drape stylised.

and lastly McCall 6069 with draped cowl at the front and back neck. My daughter tried a style like this on in a designer store and asked me to knock it off. I'm ordering this pattern.

So, although there is a little bit of winter left, it's going to be a drapey summer.