28 mei 2019

Clothes With Friends

I might have made a jacket for one specific patch. Is that ridiculous? Maybe, but I think it was worth it! Thijs embroidered a bat patch for my birthday, and I didn't really have a jacket to put it on. Things clicked when I found a heavy dark green denim at Pauli, and I decided to make the Hampton Jean Jacket again, but for myself!

I had made this jacket once before for an art show, but never really wore it. It was made as an art piece so I don't really consider it clothing, if that makes sense? Also, it's not really my colour. (Should I put it up for sale? Let me know if you're interested)

I did like the fit of that first version, so didn't make any changes to the pattern, apart from enlarging the front pockets. The ones on the original pattern are only just big enough to fit my hands into, and I felt like I needed more room for them to be useful. Giant hands strike again!

I really like how this pattern comes together. The instructions are very clear, especially with the sewalong to help you through the trickier bits! I used a triple stitch instead of topstitching thread for the topstitching, and almost ran out of thread. There is a LOT of topstitching in there, so make sure you're well-stocked if you plan on making this.

This denim is 100% cotton and quite thick, so some of the bulkier parts were a bit of a struggle. I managed to get through this project without breaking a single needle though! The standard presser foot on my machine has a really handy button that keeps it level when you start on a bulky seam, which was really helpful as well. I find sewing denim to be really satisfying, because the fabric itself isn't that hard to handle (no shifting!) it's just a bit bulky and heavy. 

Apart from the bat I got for my birthday (thanks again Thijs!) I also added a few patches I'd collected on our roadtrip through the US last September. They had been lying around for a while and all kind of magically went with this jacket. I put this whole thing together over the span of a few days, and finished it in time to take to the Paris Sewcial! 

I had a really really fun weekend in Paris. There wasn't that much fabric shopping for me (apart from something at Malhia Kent I just couldn't let get away) but I met up with Brecht one evening and he very kindly gifted me some pieces of fabric he's once designed for a clothing label. One of them was this poly charmeuse type stuff, and it was just big enough for an Ogden cami!

I've made the Ogden more times than I can count. It's a perfect stashbuster: if I cut the lining parts out of another fabric it only takes around 60 cm. I tried to use some nicer seam finishes on this since the fabric tends to fray a bit: the side seams are french seamed and I tried my best to do a decent narrow hem.

The real star of this top is obviously the print! I love Brecht's work, and I'm thrilled to have it in my wardrobe now. The other piece of fabric is a beautiful jacquard. There's quite a lot of it, so I'll have to do some careful thinking about what to use it for!

16 mei 2019

Birthday Bee

I usually don't have many occasions to wear or sew fancy dresses in my day-to-day life, so when an occasion arises I just go all out! One of those occasions is my birthday. I tend to keep my parties very quiet and low key (people I like gather at my house and we eat all day) so I'm usually ridiculously overdressed, but hey, my party! This year was the year I turned 30, so I went all out and grabbed some embroidered tulle that had been in my stash for a while!

I loved the Deer & Doe Magnolia dress the moment it was released, and thought it would be a perfect candidate for this dress! I loved the deep neckline but decided to go with the higher one just to stay bra-friendly. This has been a good idea because even the 'higher' neckline is pretty deep!

I have to be honest and admit that I didn't really look at the instructions for this one. I've made enough dresses by now to figure out my own preferred way of construction, and I was going to do the skirt differently anyway! I wanted a plain underskirt with at least one tulle overskirt, and it took a little bit of thinking to figure out how to construct all this and install the zipper.

The bodice is made from a very light black viscose. I lined the front and back but kept the sleeves unlined for floatiness. The fit is pretty good (which is often the case for me with Deer & Doe patterns) but the princess seam could use some tweaking. There is a bit of bubbling at the top, so I'll have to take a look at that if I made this again!

The skirt has three layers: a base layer made from plain black cotton lining, a second layer of plain black tulle for volume and an overskirt of embroidered tulle. I used the skirt pattern pieces for the lining and black tulle layer, but didn't have enough embroidered tulle to do that, so just gathered the entire width of the fabric. It's not as voluminous as I would have liked, but that's entirely my own fault (for not getting enough fabric, AGAIN). I had a good long think about the zipper situation because I wanted all three layers to be separate and only be attached at the waist. In the end I basted them together and folded the seam allowances of the tulle layers back at the seam, so the zipper would only go through the top of the dress and the lining. Does that make sense?

Because of how soft this fabric is the dress tends to relax and stretch a bit, so the waist ties help a bit to cinch it in. I was surprisingly comfortable for how much I ate during the day, although I did switch to a skirt with an elastic waist and a t-shirt later (but mostly so I could sit on the floor with my friends).

Would I make this dress again? Maybe, but in a different fabric, so it's a bit more 'daily wear'. I did enjoy floating around with all my (bee) friends all day!