Friday, July 24, 2015

Faux Liberty Blouse

I'll be perfectly honest: I love the look of Liberty fabrics, but not the price. When I came across this cotton print in a local shop this spring (as they were going out of business), I grabbed enough of it to make myself a pretty top.

Vogue 8747 (OOP)

This is my second time making up this pattern. I just love the way the center front curves slightly at the neckline and the gathers in the button placket.

There's really not much to tell you, as the pattern is very well drafted and illustrated. It didn't take me long to make, as I'd work on it here and there over the course of a few days. No hiccups, no problems, just a nice, easy, calm, stress-free, quick garment!

The finest details of the fabric is tough to see in the pictures, but there is a soft background wide stripe of seafoam green, and the print is a "contemporary" paisley, with soft pink accents. It's just lovely. The color scheme, the print, the weight... I think it reads very "feminine" and I really think it will be a nice addition to my closet.
You can kind of see the soft wide stripes here...
The neckline is perfect for a pretty necklace charm.
I'm working on cleaning up the UFOs in the sewing room, I've got two more patterns that are completely cut and ready to sew: a Vogue skirt and a dress. Summer is flying by too quickly!!!

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Vogue 1302: Little Black Lace Dress

Vogue 1302
Kay Unger with lots of ruching
My pattern review is here.

With a wedding to attend, and no little black dress in my closet, I thought it would be a good project. I managed to have EVERYTHING on hand in my stash already: lace, charmeuse, lining, zipper, and thread! There was only 1 other review I could find on this pattern, and it warned of the multiple layers of fabrics being heavy to wear... so the lace and charmeuse made a lot of sense to me. In hindsight, I'm afraid that the nature of the lace is not ruching-friendly, and maybe I'd have had more luck getting the gathers to lay correctly if I'd used a chiffon?

As I started construction, I hand gathered the lace over the 4 side panels of the dress (2 front and 2 back) which didn't take nearly as long as I expected. As I approached the draped and gathered lace pieces of the bodice, I was careful to first attach the flat edges of lace to the under layer of charmeuse, which made the gathering and attachment of the remaining edges much less confusing. My new Baby Lock Imagine serger was absolutely amazing going from lace to charmeuse, over gathers and switching between single layers and multiple layers with gathering. It was the absolute best investment in the sewing room, next to my Baby Lock Jane straight stitch machine!

One it was all together, I did NOT like the way the lace was poofing across some of the gathers, but a little time spent distributing the ruching and pinning and hand-tacking made for a much better looking bodice.
 You can see how I placed the pattern so the hem would fall along the scallop edge of the lace. Other than taking it in a pinch in the waist at the side seams, I made no alterations (and from all the corners and angles, I'm not sure it would've been possible to anyway).

I'm very happy with the final product. It's a great addition to my closet for special occasions, and was actually very comfortable in weight considering the heat index yesterday was 100 degreees! I'd definitely recommend this pattern, just be sure to select appropriate fabrics and have the patience to work with lots and lots of gathering!
A little selfie at the table with my honey.