Sunday, March 24, 2013

My Next Knock-off Project

We've all found ourselves flipping through a magazine, and stumbling across a garment that just took our breath away or made us smile. The kind of garment that makes you dog-ear the page corner and gets you doing a Google image search! Well, that's me and my current situation with this lovely Bebe Spring 2013 dress:
I searched online for a link to the original, and all I could find were images from the ad campaign. The bebe website doesn't appear to even be selling this dress, but instead a different version that I really don't care for:
$159, currently on sale for $95.
What?! I believe that's called "Bait and Switch"! Lure me onto your website looking for a classy and sophisticated sheath dress, and leave me with a super short, lace-trimmed, tank dress??? I don't think so...

So, I did a new search. "Blue floral print fabric"... and look what I found! Not an exact match, but close enough for me.
This lovely cotton lycra sateen print is 56" wide and only $10.98/yd! I searched every fabric website I could think of, but think one came the absolute closest with the color way and the weight/drape needed for a structured dress. The ultimate bonus is that it's at Haberman Fabrics, about 45 minutes away. Can you believe it'll be cheaper for me to have it shipped than the cost of gas to actually drive there myself?! Seriously.

Next step: Pattern choice. I have a Vogue "Kay Unger" dress pattern that would suffice, but this Vogue pattern (Vogue 8727) is really spot-on, and require almost no alterations (slightly narrow the shoulder seams).

View D, 1 1/2 yds, no lining!
I'm left with just one concern: How do I prevent the dark binding from bleeding into the white cotton print? Dry clean only?
Now, if Spring would kindly arrive (it's running rather late this year), I'd be much obliged!!!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Under Construction!

I heard that Spring is coming, but it's hard to believe when there's still snow flying! I'm going to be optimistic anway, and stitch up something lightweight and short-sleeved!
 I've had this Gorgeous silk print for a year now, having only bought a yard and perplexed as to how to use it. This one is very similar!  Originally, I was going to make a short sleeved blouse, but never got around to it. Recently I was digging through my pattern drawer and it occurred to me... pair the print with a black silk and make that color-blocked dress you've been wanting!
 So, it still needs a zipper, sleeves, and a lining, but it's shaping up to be a stunner!

Saturday, March 2, 2013

In like a Lion... Maybe an Elk... Likely a Deer...

Thank you all so very much for all the wonderful compliments on my Lanvin Knockoff! The online sewing community has been so wonderfully supportive and inspirational since I've returned to sewing and started blogging 5 years ago. Voting starts March 3 and ends March 10, and with 42 entries... Yikes! I'm more than a little nervous! You can see all the entries here. 
Back to the previously scheduled program...
That's a lot of LEATHER!
My oldest sister is married to an avid hunter. Apparently years ago, he had a plan to collect enough hides to have a jacket made. In the retirement process of cleaning house and lightening their "collections", he decided that the jacket wasn't really going to happen, so I was gifted 7 8 beautiful leather skins! They are all a beautiful "natural" ivory shade, with a couple slightly more yellow and closer to "chamois". Mostly large skins, and similar in weight/texture, but one of them is HUGE, thicker, and has marks/scars on the skin, and my sister is guessing that it's likely caribou or elk.
That's my 30"x36" cutting mat! Huge hide!
So, I am now the proud and lucky owner of 7 8 leather skins, free of charge (eta: as I was cleaning up my "wrapping paper" this morning, I found another in a bag)! I'm definitely planning a cute little ivory skirt, as there are 2 or 3 skins that are near perfect matches in color, weight, and texture. This is the pattern I used in the fall, and it worked out wonderfully...
 I would love a vest, but would rather it be dark brown... I'm doing some research to see if its possible to dye leather again once its been tanned.  It appears (judging from a couple websites) that it is possible, and that while it involved a few steps, it is something that I could do myself. On the list of "Things I want to learn", dying fabric is up at the top, so maybe this will push me in the right direction!
And just for fun... Can you name this "minor character" from the "Happy Days" sitcom?