Friday, 24 June 2011

I did a bad thing, more patterns!

I may have accidentally acquired some new-to-me patterns!  I can't help it, it's like a disease!  Heehee!  The first two I found on ebay and really liked them but they were ending while I was at work so I just slapped a minimum bid on them, not really expecting to win either and I got both!

Simplicity 5924 - 1965

I love this pattern!  It is so sweet!  It is basically a shift dress with different collar alterations but I can see myself wearing every single one!  The cover is ripped but the pattern is fine and it was bought from a retiring seamstress which makes me happy that it was once loved as much as I love it.  Plus I don't think I have any 1960's patterns (until now!)

Style 3923 - 1972
I didn't think I would win this one either but I am glad I did.  It's not my usual style but what drew me to it was the curved waistline on the front and the plunging v at the back.  I don't really wear full length dresses but I think this could look great for a wedding or party and would also work in a shortened length.

McCall's 7573 - 1981
This is a pattern I won in a recent giveaway on Bessie Art 's blog.  Hooray fro free patterns!  I like the short view though I am not sure I have enough confidence for a playsuit, I would really like to knock one up for someone, perhaps my sister.

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

My 1975 Ditsy Floral Dress -Finished!

I have finished my dress :)  This makes me happy!  I am off camping this weekend so I knew I wouldn't have a chance to work on it so it has just been little bits here and there and I managed to hem it this morning.
Front view
The sleeves are puffier than I first thought but I like it though they are a little tight even with reducing the seam allowance.  I added the lace trim that I bought at this years Sewing for Pleasure and threaded a blue ribbon through it to make it stand out.  I think it breaks the dress up a bit and it means that I won't have to wear an uncomfortable belt with it. 
Back view
The lace is very slightly out of line on the zip but not enough to make me want to re-do it.  I added some of the spare blue ribbon at the top of the zip instead of using a hook and eye as I think the little bow is cute.
Sweet puffy sleeves
Ribbon and lace combo
I actually managed to get and ok-ish, though not smiling, picture of me in it, I'm feeling that '70's vibe!
I was going to shorten it a fair bit more as I usually like my dresses above the knee but when I tried it on before hemming I quite liked the length so I have kept it.

Thursday, 9 June 2011

My 1975 Ditsy Floral Dress -Work in progress 2

Hooray I had a day off today and actually got some more done on this dress.  I was hoping to have finished it but best laid plans and all that.  This morning I went to see an exhibition at the local college which my friend had photography work in.  They also had some dressmaking bits including a really pretty 1950's poodle skirt.  It was interesting to see what people had made from this course as I decided against it last year as it was one evening a week and by the end of the year you had only made one outfit.  I know I can make a dress in a few days so I wasn't that impressed though I did think maybe it would be a really good quality outfit and maybe there would be things I could pick up that I wouldn't  have learnt through teaching myself.  Then I looked at the inside seams of the garments.  Completely unfinished and left raw and the hem was all done on machine.  Hmm.  Glad I didn't take it now as I am not sure I would have learnt anything new.

Anyways, on to the current project, my 1975 flowery dress.  I decided to make the dress with the neck facing from the instructions as the original suggested rather then lining it as the fabric is not see-through and I don't want it to be a bulky summer dress.
Inside neck facing before pressing
I also finish all my seams with my overlocker.  It's quick and easy and I am not really that worried about retaining the vintage feel by using French seams as I use vintage patterns because I like the designs not because I want to be historically accurate. 
Pressed facing from inside dress
The pattern suggested stitching along the top of the facing but I thought top stitching might keep if folded down better so I top stitched around the neckline through the facing.
Inside of sleeves
Next I sewed up the little puff sleeves, these were quite straight forward as they were the same method as a Burda shirt I made a few years ago.  It leaves the cuffs looking all neat and pretty inside.  I had to reduce the seam allowance by half a cm on each underarm seam as they were feeling a little tight on my arms when I tried them on.  (I hope other people do this, walk around with disembodied sleeves on their arms!)  I top stitched the cuffs to match the neckline too. 
Puffy sleeves!
The pattern calls for the zip to be put in before the facing and sleeves but as I plan on adding some trim (which you can see around Ann's neck) and thought it would look better if I can hide the raw edges when putting the zip in rather than have them showing.  I don't really see why you have to put the zip in first. 

Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Burda Style June 2011

I was very excited when I saw the front cover of June's Burda Style as I love that pink dress!  The gathered neckline is really pretty and it has a very flattering shape.  When I opened it, it didn't disappoint!  There are so many lovely things in it this month!

My absolute favourite has to be this halter neck pattern from the Brigitte Bardot range.
Argh is not not adorable?!  I have made a similar halter dress in the past for my sister, but I just love the shape, the neckline, the pleats in the skirt, the fabric....I could go on!  The whole Bardot section of this mag is perfect for me and I'm sure a lot of vintage lovers out there!
How cute is this little bikini/underwear set?  They have styled it as a bikini but I think it depends on the fabric choice.  I love the ruffles and the modest pants. 

My last picture from this section, these lovely cigarette pants and boat neck top.  The top is featured a few times in the magazine but looks best here where it is more fitted.  I'm not sure I like the waistband of the trousers as it is a bit bulky but I like the length and cut.
From the Festival of Colour section I love this jersey dress.  Maxi dresses are all in fashion now and the like the elegant plunging neckline, also the fabric possibilities of this is pretty endless.  
The electric blue flowy, full skirt is beautiful too though I don't like the top it is paired with, but you could dress it up or down.
This outfit from the Immaculate collection is made up of parts of patterns I have already posted.  The top is the pink dress from the front cover and the skirt is from the halter neck dress.  I really like them both and again there is loads of colours and patterns that could work well with them.
Since I started this blog review I have noticed that I have loved a D.I.Y post in each magazine which I never used to.  This months is the peter pan collar tute which is really cute and very current.  I have seen lots of collar tutorials popping up on the net recently.  I think whoever does this section must have had a change of editor or contributor as it has suddenly become so much more up to date and current.  Before they tended to be imitations of high fashion I hated or more mumsy out of date accessories that most people wouldn't wear. 

It was quite difficult to pick something I didn't like this month as most things has redeeming features or were just a bit bland rather than being horrible.  I have decided on this dress though, I don't like the drape, it makes the model look completely shapeless so who knows what it would do to a real women, and the colour and shininess is pretty horrendous.  When it is done in white cotton at the end of the magazine though, it looks a lot better so I think this is mainly the fabric choice.

Sunday, 5 June 2011

My 1975 Ditsy Floral Dress -Work in progress

This week after finishing my inchies I moved on to this 1975 dress pattern, a Style pattern 1195, which I have been wanting to make up since my friend bought it for me about a year and a half ago.  I got this fabric which is a cotton lawn from last years Sewing For Pleasure with this pattern in mind and it has been sitting in my stash ever since. 
I am making view 1, the red polka dot one on the right, which has sweet little puffy sleeves and en empire line.  I quite like the ruffles on the other two patterns but I think for this fabric it will look better without.  I like the idea of making one in a plainer fabric with coloured ruffles though, or the other way around. 

When I opened the packet I found out that it had already been cut out.  I don't normally cut out vintage patterns but as this one already had been it was easier to do a tissue fit with it to work out if it needed alterations than the paper I usually use to trace patterns. 

If you look closely you can see where the dressmaker has altered the size of some of the pieces, though I don't think it is done in a conventional way, just chopping a bit off here and there!  She also cut the bottom off the skirt...
....but helpfully included it in the pattern packet and marked it as to whether it was the front or the back.  When fitting I decided the empire line was a little high on the bust so I added 1.5cm as I hate it when empire dresses come up too high and cut across the bust, which happens in some ready to wear dresses I have.  I also took a fair bit out of the length of the skirt, but not wanting to lose the fullness I folded the pattern over and re-drew the side seams to even it out.  I am a beginner at altering patterns but these weren't major improvements so I will see how they turn out.
Bodice Front
I have sewn the bodice together, then the skirt and the skirt to the bodice and it currently looks like this.
I had a little bit of trouble with the darts not sitting quite right but I made them a tiny bit longer and they seem better now, I think I should have sewn them with smaller stitches.  I like how it looks so far, narrow at the waist and fuller at the bottom of the skirt, it will most likely have a longish hem as it is still pretty long on me and I want it to be knee length.