The Convention That Never Was

Once upon a time, there was this Doctor Who convention set at the end of August, in the UK. My husband and I were so looking forward to it. I spent countless hours working on our cosplays for the event. To the point of getting myself a pretty nasty RSI in my left wrist due to all that knitting and sewing in a short amount of time.

But it never happened.

To make a very long story short, it folded and got cancelled less than 24 hours before the start. We were already in the UK, on our way to the location, when we heard it was cancelled. I know, these things can happen, but this wasn’t due to unforeseen circumstances. Anyway, let’s say the organizers didn’t act professionally. And we were probably too gullible in believing they would pull it off.

But hey, this is a sewing blog, not a ranting blog, so let me show you what I worked on!

The hubby – Fourth Doctor

SAM_9691-1

My inspiration was Tom Baker’s costume in the episode The Masque of Mandragora.

This was the most time-consuming cosplay I’ve ever worked on, just because of the scarf. All in all, at an average of 90 minutes of knitting per day, it took me about 6 weeks to complete it. I don’t knit fast. And I hate knitting anyway. But I’m happy I can cross “Knit a Fourth Doctor Scarf” off my bucket list.

SAM_9696

The waistcoat was made using Simplicity 2895. Honestly, it’s not my favorite waistcoat pattern. I just couldn’t get the welted pockets to work — I really don’t know why, I’ve made plenty of welted pockets before. So the pockets on his waistcoat are fake ones. I find this very embarrassing, but after cutting the front twice (matching the plaid as best I could) I was running out of fabric and patience.

The trousers are Laughing Moon Mercantile #119. As with all LM patterns I’ve made so far, the detailing is exquisite but enormously time-consuming. But the final result is a pair of trousers that fit really well (I used the “portly fit”) and definitely look the part.

SAM_9692

The frock coat was the double-breasted coat of Laughing Moon Mercantile #109, which I used before for my Eighth Doctor cosplay. This new version was even more time-consuming, as pressing the velveteen required a lot of patience. The fusible interfacing just wouldn’t stick properly. But I did manage to press the fabric without damaging it (ha!) using a press cloth, and even though the sleeves aren’t set in properly (doh!) I’m still pleased with the result. And my husband is happy, so who am I to complain?

Me – A steampunk female twist on the TV movie Eighth Doctor’s outfit

See, I was supposed to meet Paul McGann again at this convention-that-never-was. And I just didn’t want to meet him wearing the same cosplay as the previous occasion, by fear of being recognized and seen as a stalker 😆 And I just really needed an excuse to make Simplicity 2172. I fell in love with this pattern when it came out last year, but never had any occasions to make it. Until now.

SAM_9700-1

I decided to make the coat and the bustier, and leave out the skirt out of sheer laziness, really. I didn’t want to spend hours pleating! I replaced it with McCall’s 6911. I thought the uneven hem was an interesting design element and I believed it would complement the coat nicely. I used heavyweight duchesse satin in silver grey, and I added green rick-rack around the hem. (Arrrgh, the hem is turned on this picture, I didn’t notice!)

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

The coat is made with bottle green cotton velveteen, the same type/weight as my husband’s frock coat. Having worked on his coat before, I knew how to handle velveteen when it comes to pressing and sewing, and I’m quite happy with the result. The flounces are made of a cheap polyester woven in off-white.  I didn’t finish the edge with a narrow hem, instead I hemmed using my serger.

SAM_9702-1

The bustier is made with the most expensive fabric of the outfit, luckily I only needed a yard. I bought it off Ebay, a beautiful gold/silver brocade. I finished the outfit with a mini tophat made using McCall’s 6975 (view F), that I decorated using some trim and bow I had on hand. It’s holding on my head thanks to 2 hair clips I tacked under the rim.

We still had the occasion to wear our outfits that weekend, despite the convention cancellation, as it coincided with the airing of the first episode of the new series and the new Doctor! We had tickets to see the episode at the cinema the Saturday evening, and we had a blast chatting with fellow Whovians and cosplayers!

10615613_10152403966177585_7302847059931802121_n

Don’t we make the cutest geeky couple? ❤

All in all, it wasn’t a completely wasted weekend, but the aftertaste of the last-minute cancellation will last for a while.

And this was the story of The Convention That Never Was…

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

Advertisements

Time for some “me sewing”

I’m still working on my gazillions of cosplay projects. But with the London Film & Comic Con date approaching faster and faster, where I wanted to wear some of my projects, I started to get overwhelmed by the sheer size of them. And I kinda panicked. I started to drag my feet, procrastinated a lot, fell behind on my schedule… On the other hand, I also admitted to myself that my projects were really ‘winter costumes’, with several layers, and they didn’t seem ideal for a crowded and busy summer comic con. So I put them aside, and then fell off the sewing wagon altogether. Not good.

To kick-start my sewing mojo again, I chased instant gratification projects. The kind you can whip up in an afternoon. My first victim was Simplicity 1365, with their cute vintage 70’s style halter tops.

I made View A, but without the lace trim. The print on my fabric was busy enough, I thought it didn’t need the extra fluff of a trim. I puzzled a lot to make the pieces as symmetrical as possible, and I think I did a fairly good job!

I love the 70’s vibe. Love the peplum. Love the sexy open back. I’m sincerely in love with this top. If only it would look good on me… *sigh* As you know, I’ve lost a lot of weight, I went from a J cup to a DD… I’ll leave it to your imagination, but I really can’t go walk around without a bra. And this top is cut very low (it ties at the small of my back, not the middle) so that leaves me without the possibility of wearing a bra. I can still wear it, mind you, but it makes me very self-conscious!

I cut a size smaller than my usual size (I cut a 14) because I read there was some side gaping. I tissue-fitted and it looked fine, but of course I did the fitting with a bra, and the bra-less thing is changing everything about the fit, duh! I discovered the gaping situation very late in the game, basically when my top was 95% complete. How to solve it? Well, I pinched the excess, and made a dart, top stitching it on the outside. The print is so busy, you barely notice it. However, now my top fits perfectly!


My next project was a simple t-shirt dress in a very bold print with flowers & butterflies. I dug deep in my dash for this one, and used Hot Patterns HP102, which is now out-of-print (and has been for a while now).

I like it’s simplicity. Straight lines, easy elasticized waist. My dislike, as others commented online: facings. Ugh. I used them anyway, but I should have known better. It just wouldn’t stay inside, despite understitching and even tacking it at the shoulder seams. While I was hemming my sleeves and skirt with my twin needles, I ran a stitch around the neckline to keep the facing from rolling to the outside, once and for all. I should have just used fold-over elastic or my own neckline binding instead of the facing — I’ll know for next time. If there’s a next time.

I did my utmost best to match the stripes at the side seams, but it was impossible to match the print itself (I didn’t have enough fabric for that). And the sleeves were even more trickier because I didn’t have much fabric left. I tried to match the stripes when setting the sleeves in, but meh. It didn’t quite work. Oh well. It looks much worse in RTW sometimes, so I’m not going to beat myself up for it.

I used the classic round neckline with the A-line skirt, but left the ruffle out. The dress is maybe a tad shorter than I would have liked, but I’m wearing it with the elasticized waist sitting low, almost at the hip line, and I can get away with it. I know some commented that the bodice is really long: it is indeed long, but since I’m wearing it low, it’s actually the perfect length for me.


And finally, another old pattern from stash, now out-of-print, Simplicity 2956.

I made the halter bodice with the bubble skirt. This is an easy dress, the notches were matching, and it came together fairly quickly. I just completely missed the step about creating a casing in the seam allowance when joining the bodice to the skirt and I was wondering why the dress was so wide when I tried it on. However, it was too late to create a casing, since I had trimmed the seam allowance with my serger. I ended up stitching an elastic under the tiny seam allowance I had left using a zig zag stitch, and it seemed to work. The inside of the dress lost it’s neatness, but no one will see it anyway!

It’s a cute design, I was skeptical about the braided tie, but it works well. It’s very comfortable to wear, great for the summer. My fabric is a poly/rayon/lycra knit with a gold flowery print. I didn’t have a lot of that fabric, so the bodice facing and underskirt are made of a plain poly/rayon/lycra knit in black.

I have an office summer party coming up soon, I thought the gold print matched the occasion 😉

I have several other quick projects all cut and ready to sew, this should keep me busy the coming weekends! Until I pick up my cosplay projects again 🙂

Eighth Doctor costume – Part III

The frock coat was by far the most challenging piece of my costume. Not only because of all time I spent on it, but also because it was my first piece of menswear and it required quite a bit of tailoring.

Prior to this project, I didn’t even know what a sleeve head was. And I had no idea what chest padding was, and why it was needed. As I said in my previous post, I ultimately left out the actual padding (with batting) from the waistcoat, but for the frock coat, I used a layer of cotton flannel. If you’re interested in learning more about chest padding in Victorian tailoring, check out this great blog, aptly named Victorian Tailoring. Very useful! And regarding the sleeve head, I drafted my own using this tutorial. Pretty easy. I also used cotton flannel for my sleeve heads.

I used Laughing Moon 109 again for my frock coat, using the double-breasted version, and I cut a size 36. The 5 inches of ease were plenty enough around the chest area, and the waist/hips fit nicely as well. However, once I was done cutting my fabric, I realized I didn’t do any length adjustments at all. Ugh! Too late now! I figured I could cut the excess length at the hem (I effectively chopped off 3 inches) but I was more worried about the placement of the waist seam. I do have a long-ish torso for my height, but I’m still just 5’2″, much shorter than the average man! On the final coat, you can see the waist seam sits lower than where it should have been sitting, i.e. it’s sitting almost at my hip line instead of a couple of inches higher, at my natural waist line. Also, the sleeves are much too long — I didn’t adjust these either. Lesson learned for next time: don’t forget to make length adjustments!

???????????????????????

This frock coat was very time-consuming, due to all the little details. The tail, the double-breasted front, the sleeve cuffs, the lining, the contrast fabric on the collar, the hidden pocket in the front, the felt undercollar. There was a lot of hand stitching involved, but I like how everything turned out. This coat is definitely among my most satisfying projects.

My fabric is a mystery stretch woven. The color is olive green, not quite the same as the original, but since this costume was a stash-busting project, this is the closest I could find. The original costume (on the left) didn’t have contrasting lining showing on the collar, however if you have a look at the TV movie frock coat (on the right), there is a contrasting fabric, just not a contrasting color.

PaulMcGannNightoftheDoctor233560

I’ve always thought Eight’s costume in The Night of the Doctor to be a washed down, disheveled and damaged-by-centuries-of-Time-War version of his TV movie outfit, but I guess it’s not. But I did like the idea and the look of using a contrasting color and fabric, so I went for it anyway. I used a remnant of a beautiful silk lining in light brown, a perfect match for the color scheme of the costume!

I left out the secret pockets in the tail, mostly because I struggled immensely with the tail and I was worried the pockets would weigh it down and make it look even more off. It was supposed to form a placket on the exterior, like on this picture of the Fifth Doctor costume (but without the contrasting bias):

???????????????????????????????

Somehow, mine was way too short to form anything on the outside. It was just a little stump of barely 1cm. I decided to pull it back on the inside and tack it there, but it still doesn’t look quite right (as shown in the gallery below). I did follow the instructions and carefully marked the folding line… Strange. Something to lookout for when I use this pattern again: what did I do wrong? How can I fix this?

Phew! Now you know everything about my costume 🙂

I’m now busy with three different costume projects at the same time, trying to complete every piece before the deadline I set for myself, which is the London Film and Comic Con in July! I’ve been knitting & sewing, learning about hat-making, and playing with vintage patterns. Loads of fun! And I sincerely have to stop myself from adding more projects to my bursting pipeline… SO. MANY. COSTUMES. TO. MAKE. SO. LITTLE. TIME. More on these projects as I complete them!

Adventures in cosplay

I’m approaching 40, but lately I started to let my inner geek show. I’m attending comic cons. I’m buying geeky t-shirts — and lots of them. I’m spending more time on Tumblr more than on Facebook. Mid-life crisis? I have no idea. But who cares, really?

I also have to make a confession: I’m a huge fan of Doctor Who. You could easily say I’m addicted!

I recently crossed a line I never thought I’d cross: I made a costume. And I wore it at a convention. I guess that makes me… a cosplayer.

Of course, my inspiration for this costume was taken from the Doctor Who fandom. I’m particularly fond of the Eighth Doctor, played superbly by Paul McGann. All right, the 1996 TV movie was sub-par to say the least, but McGann himself was brilliant. Even though he never got to play in an actual series of Doctor Who, he continued his work as the Eighth Doctor via the Big Finish audioplays, and he made a surprise appearance in the 50th anniversary minisode ‘The Night of the Doctor’. And it’s thanks to the audioplays and this too short minisode that I really fell in love with his interpretation of the character. So I just had to make myself an Eighth Doctor costume!

I picked his outfit from The Night of the Doctor, with the iconic green frock coat, however more disheveled than in the TV movie, and I was determined to use fabric from stash as much as possible, and to make as many items of the outfit myself as I could. I made the frock coat, the vest, the trousers, the shirt and the cravat — ALL with fabric from stash. Yay for stash-busting projects! I know he wears boots and garters (WWI style), rather than tall lace-up boots, but lack of time and materials to make the garters made me choose for the tall boots shortcut. I will eventually look for leather to make the garters, and I’ll keep my eyes open for brown military-style boots…

Then I added some props: I found a toy sonic screwdriver (8th Doctor version) and a cool fob watch on eBay, and a friend tipped me about a company who makes replicas of the TARDIS key, Mooncrest Models (check them out, they do amazing work on props replicas!). The belt is basically an old belt I had that was now way too big following my weight loss, I cut off the excess at the back and sewed the pieces together. Yay for recycling!

I’ll talk about each sewn costume piece in details in future posts, but for now, here’s a slideshow of my outfit! (Please excuse the wrinkles, I’ve been sitting most of the afternoon attending panels…)

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

While making this costume, I learned several new techniques, especially regarding tailoring of menswear. Very interesting experience, to say the least. I’m going to address the coat, the vest, the pants and the shirts in more details in subsequent posts, there’s too much to talk about!

Oh and this is certainly not my last cosplay project. I have at least 3 more already lined-up. When I said a few months back that I was finally enjoying sewing for the sake of creating and making something fun, rather than sewing functional clothes — well, this is certainly true when it comes to costumes!

Vintage Pattern Contest – Completed Projects!

I ran out of time (and steam) and only made the capelet and the dress. But these were the two major components I wanted to enter in the contest, so mission accomplished! The voting has begun, I’m quite nervous. I don’t know if I really have chances in winning one of the prizes — in any case I worked really hard on both my capelet and my dress, with grading and tracing and figuring out how to construct something without instructions!

Vintage Pattern Contest

The Capelet

The pattern comes only in one size, Small (sizes 10-12). By comparing my bust measurements to the ones on the pattern envelope, I discovered I fell somewhere in-between sizes Medium and Large. But the challenge remained: this pattern is in size Small, and I need to make it bigger! I am familiar with the slash and spread grading technique, but I just couldn’t see where/how I was supposed to slash the cape pattern pieces, they are so very different from a normal top! And getting the collar to fit just right after grading the capelet was also a challenge for me.

I went through my (modern) patterns stash and found a pattern for a cape. I observed how the grading was done – adding more to the side seams, a bit less to the neckline, and not adding any length at all. And then I carefully reproduced a similar grading on my own vintage pattern (which I had previously traced on pattern paper, of course! ;))

20131109_093150

20131109_095408

I quickly whipped up a muslin to check the fit. When I assembled the collar, it became very obvious I had somehow added way too much to the under collar piece. I knew I was supposed to ‘ease’ the under collar while attaching to the upper collar, but this wasn’t easing, this was making pleats!

Back to the drawing board!

I compared the upper and under collar pieces, spotted the differences, and decided to re-draft my under collar closer to the upper collar shape. I measured the neck opening of the capelet pattern pieces with my flexible ruler — making sure I measure between the circle of the font piece and the center back, subtracting seam allowance, and transposed the measurements to my collar pieces. I cut it again out of muslin fabric, assembled the pieces and ahh! Much better! (By the way, the wrinkles are because of wrinkles in my fabric!)

20131109_144855

The final collar looks pretty good on my capelet, so glad I managed to make it work!

20131109_145635

The Dress

Whipping up a muslin and actually making the dress are two completely different things, I discovered. I omitted the back neck facing when making the muslin, for example. And order of construction doesn’t really matter because it’s just a muslin anyway, right? But now that my dress is cut and ready to assemble for real, I’m having doubts about what I should sew first. There is no mention of interfacing on the list of notions or fabric needed, but I decided to interface the cross-crossing edge of the pleated front pieces with a strip of fusible interfacing, to give them more body. I also interfaced the back neck facing.

N.B.: I have no idea if the order of construction I improvised for my dress was the best order possible, I just tried to do what seemed the most logical, step by step. And I decided to start with the pleated front pieces, which appeared like the most labor-intensive part anyway.

And it was. It really was.

I had to mark the pleats, circles and crosses twice, as the markings was fading from manipulation and steam. And each time I thought I was done steaming the heck out of these pleats and ready to baste them in place, I would try to line-up the pleated piece with its facing, and realize it just didn’t match. Ugh! I had to ‘un-pleat’ and ‘re-pleat’ the front pieces at least 3 times each until I reached an acceptable matching between them and their facing. I basted my pleats in place and then basted the front pieces and the facings together.

Then, I stitched the back shoulder darts, and stitched the back neck facing to the back piece. Now the tricky bit: How do I get the back facing and the shoulder seams to be all neat? I puzzled a bit, and then figured out I had to wedge the back facing between the front and back pieces, wrapping the front piece around. When done stitching, cut the corner, trim seam and turn inside out. It didn’t turn out perfect, I guess my pleated front in all its layers was just a bit thick to really make the edge even with the back piece.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

My next step was to make the front and back darts. This step is relatively simple — only relatively because there were some strange markings telling me I had to stitch horizontally, and it just didn’t make sense to me. I decided to ignore them.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESI thought this was the best time to sew in my invisible zipper to the left side seam, stopping the stitching at 1,5 cm from the bottom edge, to be able to sew the side panels without going over the zipper. I also closed the right side seam, this time stitching all the way to the edge. At that point, I still wasn’t sure what I was supposed to do with the armholes opening. There are no facing pieces. I don’t see any stitching line on the drawings. I left the armholes as is for now, I figured I’d solve that puzzle later…

Pleats, pleats, I love pleats, give me more pleats! Time to pleat the side skirt panels. Again, the pleats were very tricky as the pleats on each side edges need to form a box pleat when stitched to the front and back pieces. Pleating the side panels went quicker than the front pieces, for sure — I guess experience was finally sinking in?

To attach the side panels, I aligned the center pleat with the side seams, and eased the rest. Indeed, my front and back pieces together were a few cm bigger than my side panels. I thought it was a bit strange, as I had carefully marked my cutting lines of all my pattern pieces with my chalk marking tool, carefully marked and press my pleats, etc. The tricky bit of the side panels were indeed the pleats formed by the joining of the panels, giving the illusion of continuity with the front and back darts. I was off by a couple of millimeters every time, nothing that couldn’t be corrected with a few hand stitches on the final dress!

At that point, I tried on my dress, squealed in delight, but realized the horizontal seams at the side panels were stretching a bit and the whole thing was losing its shape and sharpness quickly. What to do, what to do? I grabbed a piece of twill tape and sewed it in place as an emergency measure. No more stretching! Crisis aborted!

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

Armholes, right? Nope, let’s push this problem to later. Let’s do the hem instead! That one is easy!

I used horsehair braid to give more body to my hem. My horsehair was white, and I didn’t like how it looked on my blue fabric, so I ‘hid’ the horsehair with a bit of black lace. (For step-by-step instructions on how to do this, see this post on my blog.)

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

Yes, the armholes. I refused to address the problem until now, no way around it, I have to find a solution. Then I laid my eyes on a pack of bias tape I originally bought to neatly finish my seams (but ended up using my pinking shears instead)… bingo! I’ll use this tape as a facing, and hand stitch in place, brilliant! Problem solved!

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

The last, last step was the bow. I cut a strip of fabric 10 x 35 cm, folded in 2, stitched around at 6mm leaving a small opening for turning. Then slipstitched by hand the opening shut. Tie it up in a cute bow and hand stitch in place.

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES
OMG, MY DRESS IS FINISHED!

I love it. LOVE IT. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE IT. Worn with a petticoat, it’s really one of my dream as a little girl come true! Look how twirly it is!

And worn with my capelet for a bit more coverage, I’m ready for a vintage night out!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

There’s one down side to this vintage pattern contest: it has rekindled my interest in vintage fashion and I’m definitely going to try other vintage patterns (or vintage reproduction patterns) I have in my stash. Where shall I start…?

Dear sewing machine, I missed you!

In my last post, I said I was planning to sew a small capsule wardrobe to get me started for the autumn/winter season, since I had absolutely nothing appropriate that fits. I’m going to say immediately that I did not sew this capsule wardrobe after all… let’s say I enjoyed shopping a bit too much when I was on vacation. Smaller size = more shopping possibilities. I was like a kid in a candy store. BUY ALL THE THINGS!

In the past, I made my own clothes because I couldn’t find clothes in styles I like, in plus sizes. And it was rather time-consuming. Now, I can find clothes in styles I like, instantly. So, why sew? For fun. As a distraction. Just because I enjoy it. I guess my main reason for sewing as a hobby has shifted: Exit purely functional sewing, hello fun and unique wardrobe additions!

Due to special circumstances (I had gall bladder removal surgery last week), I’ve been forced to stay home and not allowed to exercise at all. I found some wool and picked up my knitting needles again, but my fingers were quickly longing for something else: sewing!

For my first project, I picked the Watson jacket from Papercut Patterns. Winter is coming, I can use a jacket that is not only warm, but also really cute. I guess I still have the ‘functional sewing’ reflex in me 😉

And here’s my version:

20131027_154317

Not bad for a first project in such a long time, if I say so myself. It was a lot of pieces to cut and assemble, from the main jacket to the lining and the contrast fabric, but all in all it wasn’t a difficult jacket and I completed it in about 1 1/2 day (including cutting). I hesitated a long time when it came to picking a size. I took my measurements, compared them to the standard measurements, found out I was in-between sizes… *sigh* In the end I went for the smaller size (M) instead of the bigger size (L), and quite frankly, it’s waaay big enough. Anecdote: when I first fell in love with this pattern, my measurements at the time would have been something like an XXXL. That would have meant a lot of adjustments, and a final product looking awkward. I remember looking at the body measurements of the biggest size, L, and thinking there’s just no way I’d ever be that small. Ahem. I had to pinch myself when I was cutting the size M, just to make sure I wasn’t dreaming it all…

I used nice wool I bought several years ago off eBay, very nice to work with. However it’s a bit heavy, so the finished jacket has quite some weight to it.

I used metal buttons from my stash, I thought it would give it a slight ‘military’ feel:

20131027_154327

I lined the jacket with padded lining for extra warmth:

20131027_154548

The pattern called for lining fabric for the capelet’s under layer, but I prefered to use something else because of the thickness of my lining. I found a nice woven that has been in my stash forever:

20131027_154336

I liked the hem facing, it helps the hem keep its shape (rounded) and it just looks very neat:

20131027_154613

And here’s the back view:

20131027_154408

After I finished, I had this warm fuzzy feeling of pride inside… ahhh I finally made something! And it looks great! And it fits! And I missed my sewing machine so much!

I completed quite a few other projects over the past few days, but I’m going to keep them for separate posts 😉

Spring Flowers Project – the photos, finally!

It all started with a collaboration idea. I sew the dresses, she takes the pictures.

After weeks of hard work, for both my friend and I, here is the final result, for your enjoyment:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Photos credits: Dauna Kraag. Follow her on Facebook!

It’s a strange feeling to see my work turned into ‘fashion art’! A mix of pride and excitement that I can’t really describe. And I’d to it all over again!

The blushing bride

I apologize for the delay in posting, let’s just say that the past weeks have been busier than ever work-wise, and that doesn’t leave much time or energy to do anything else…

Here are finally some pictures of the beautiful bride (if I say so myself) on her special day. This is why I enjoy making wedding dresses so much: the smile on the bride’s face is worth a million times the efforts I put in the dress. It’s just… priceless.

Her complete outfit consisted of a dress made using Vogue 1182, view B (with trim). The fabric is an absolutely gorgeous off-white silk dupioni. With the remnants, I made a small purse using Simplicity 2166, view E. I also made a stole from embroided organza, as the weather was still a bit chilly for May, and the bride wanted to cover her arms.

Enjoy 🙂

 

Here comes the bride! (well, almost…)

I will not share the full pictures until after the wedding day, but here are two very sneak previews of what I’ve been working on the last few weekends. The dress and accessories will be hand-delivered tomorrow, and there will be time for a very last minute fitting session. Hopefully the real thing will fit at least as good (well… I hope it will fit better!) as the muslin! haha

Image

Image

And then I’ll be moving on to a top-secret project for which I’m really, really excited. The big reveal should take place in a few weeks! 😉

Spring Flowers Gowns project – Lily of the valley

I couldn’t resist. I had to make another dress. When I first discussed the project with my friend, we agreed on 3 or 4 dresses. Because of the time crunch, I decided to aim for 3 dresses. But I enjoy this project so much that I did everything I could to fit a 4th dress in my crazy sewing schedule!

Meet the lily of the valley. A sweet cocktail dress based on Simplicity 4070. I made view C, strapless with balloon skirt, but without the belt. It’s a very simple pattern, it goes together very quickly. And as for the previous 3 dresses, it’s still without a zipper – I need to go buy one!  For the dress, I used polyester taffeta with light crinkle effect, in off-white. The lining is some mystery man-made fiber fabric. Very plasticky. That will teach me to order lining online!

The flower was the biggest challenge, and I made several paper models before settling on a pattern.

Then, it was a question of joining the seams, adding a bit of gathered tulle to the inside to help keep its shape and finishing with pearl stems. The stems are left-overs from the first ever wedding dress I made for someone else… back in 2006!

I also added a green bow for a splash of color, because it’s very monochromatic otherwise! Enjoy the bonus cat pictures. My cat Luna just wouldn’t budge from the staircase as I wanted to take the pictures. I guess she wanted to be the center of attention 🙂

And this completes the Spring Flowers Gowns project. The photo shoot will take place within the next few weeks, so stay tuned to see them in action!

Next up: my friend’s wedding dress. I made the muslin today, the first fitting is next weekend! So exciting 🙂