Friday, December 31, 2010

Sloper Success

Finally! I think I've gotten my sloper to a point where I can use it for the basis of a garment I'll actually wear. It's not perfect, but I think it's time to move on! That's right, this is only a test, not my new country western dance outfit. The bandana print is leftover from some sleep pants I made for Stephan some years ago.

Note the gifts in the background- That's right, it's my birthday eve!

Here's the back:

And a close up of the sleeve:

Such a tedious process. Every time I made an adjustment on the muslin, I'd make a corresponding adjustment on the newsprint pattern. My next step will be to use the newsprint version to draft the pattern for the Peter Pan collared dress I've been wanting to make.

Happy New Year everyone! I'm off to roast a chicken and soak some black eyed peas.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Pioneering the Way

More from the archives...  If I am ever inclined to think that I was born in the wrong decade, these ads assure me that I was not. Vintage style is great for dresses. For medicine? Not so much.

You aren't feeling "literally assured?"

Well, it's relatively non-toxic.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

A New Plan for Peter Pan

Although I haven't been sewing this past week, I've still been thinking about it, making some design changes to the Peter Pan collared dress I am planning to make when I've finished my sloper. The biggest difference is the fabric selection. Instead of the flower print, I've decided to go with the fabric below- charcoal pinstripes for the bodice, sleeves, and skirt, and the blue-green cotton sateen for the collar and waistband.

I'm a little more psyched about the project, given the fabric changes and the little cap sleeves. I'm thinking the more subdued palette will balance out the overall sweetness of the design.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Where has all the sewing gone?

In the spirit of keeping holiday traditions alive, I've taken a break from the bodice action to spend some time on other crafty endeavors. Each year since we've been married, Stephan and I have sent out handmade holiday cards. Each year we decide to take a year off, then end up cranking out the card in a last minute frenzy. Usually, Stephan screenprints the cards, usually incorporating our cats in a holiday scene, but this year we've decided to go with cut paper snowflakes. Here's a peak:

The flakes are cut from Thai Mulberry paper using this folding technique. The patches of color are cut from Color-Aid paper.

Here are some cards from holiday past:

From 2006-  My beloved Blanche and her stars of wonder.

From 2007- Blanche and our new addition, Lucius, making peace under the mistletoe.

From 2008- The year Blanche became an angel.

From 2009- Lucius and his new best friend, Dieter, awash in holiday love.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Bodice in Progress

After a crazy couple of weeks, I finally had a chance to take another crack at drafting a bodice this past weekend. This time I did a little research and found a few step-by-step guides. I decided to go with this one. It's actually from a site devoted to Renaissance Fair garb, but it seemed to have some of the clearest instructions of the other guides I found. Not that I'll be sewing a wench outfit anytime soon, but a bodice is a bodice, right?

I was somewhat skeptical as I plotted my measurements on newsprint, but I was surprised at how close I came this time:

In summary: I need to shortened the distance between shoulder and bust (you can see I have the extra fabric pinned), lower the bust dart and increase the bust dart slightly and shorten the waist dart.

Okay, so the back is a little wrinkly... maybe a little ease around the waist?