Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Red Pindot Tent Dress - Vogue 8807

This is another dress I made for a trip to France, this time it was for our trip in 2014.

In Burgundy, modeling my new bottle opener which happened to match the red pindots.

This is Vogue 8807, a very simple dress, essentially a kind of tent dress that you can cinch with a belt.

There's a belt included in the pattern, but of course you can use a store bought one just as easily.

It's fully lined with a light white cotton, and had pockets on both sides!

It was an easy make and a cute dress! Unfortunately, I didn't have quite as much fabric as I needed to make it longer, so it's just a bit short for my personal preference. (I like those pasty white knees covered!!) So it's going up for sale in my Etsy shop. :-)

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Pinspiration Tuesday - Rain Bonnets

Running a bit late with my Monday post, mostly due to preparations for the trip! So as I was planning for the trip to Scotland and trying to anticipate appropriate attire for lots of rainy days, it was recommended to me by an online Scottish friend that I pick up a "rain mate." I had to google...and then fell in love! Also known as a rain bonnet, it's just a plastic little head covering to wear in the rain, and it used to be something ladies carried around in their purses to pop on when needed!

I'm always amazed when adorable and functional items like these suddenly disappear from cultural awareness. I mean, sure, ladies don't generally have to worry about pin-curled hair, and I don't really need this in Texas (when it rains here you can't really walk around in it, as it's usually torrential rain or nothing, so a plastic bonnet won't do much!) But I just love the concept, especially as it makes big bulky dripping wet umbrellas less of a necessity.  I went looking for any place I might find one, and I may even end up making something similar to take with me. I'll be sure to share what I end up doing! In the meantime, here are some lovely examples, both vintage and modern. :-)

The style above used to come in these tiny adorable boxes!!!
Here's a modern reincarnation! If I'd had time I would have ordered one, but no such luck!

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Blue Paris Dress - McCalls 6599

Prior to our trip to France in 2013, I decided to make up as much of a wardrobe as I could for the trip! One of the dresses I made was this blue cotton dress.

I used the same pattern as I had used for the bodice on my Franken-pattern dress, McCalls 6599, since I already knew it fit me well. I decided to add sleeves this time around.

I wore this several times on the trip, including on my first trip to the Marché Saint-Pierre in Montmartre where I hit up several of les coupons, where you can get already cut fabric at a discount. I don't look nearly as happy as I was, here, lol!

It's one of my favorite places to visit in Paris, and of course the beautiful Sacré-Cœur is right down the street.

I hand picked the zipper, and lined it with a fun cotton scroll fabric.

I also included pockets, of course.


Since the trip, I haven't really worn this dress a whole lot! Not sure why, it fit well, it's just one of those things where it doesn't call out to me when I see it in the closet. (Though as with most of my things, once I put it on I thought, why don't I wear this more often?? Lol!)


But since it hasn't gotten much action in my own wardrobe, I've decided to list it for sale in my Etsy shop, and hopefully pass it along to someone who will wear it more than I have!

Monday, July 20, 2015

Pinspiration Monday - Tartan Fashions

So, in just a couple weeks I'll be heading to Glasgow, Scotland to compete in the Worlds with Silver Thistle Pipes and Drums! Clearly, this means I have tartan on the mind. ;-) So here are some fun tartan fashions I found while browsing Pinterest!


Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Khaki and Blue Tropical Flower Dress - Vogue 8811

So this one is exciting, it's my 5th Vintage Pledge make this year, which means I already reached my goal, woohoo! I really love this dress and I'm already itching to make another version. This is Vogue 8811.

What I loved in sewing this up was its simplicity.

 I did make a few alterations. The largest pattern size was still just a touch too small for my waist, so I actually left out the back darts.
That meant I only had the front darts to sew (which are interesting, because they're cut out on the pattern and at an angle, which you can see on the inside below.)
Sorry for the wrinkles and folds, this was after washing it when back from the trip
and not pressing well enough!

I'm in love with kimono style sleeves lately (and love seeing them in so many vintage and retro designs!). Setting in sleeves is still one of my most dreaded parts of sewing, so any style that gives me a sleeve without having to set it in makes me one happy little sewist!

In addition to that, I've done so many gathered skirts lately that I nearly forgot how quick and easy a circular skirt (in this case half circle, I believe) is to attach to a waistline! I even cheated and cut the skirt all in one piece, so I just needed one seam to sew it up (to which I added a pocket, of course.)

Because my fabric was slightly stretchy, I also ended up omitting the side zipper altogether! So I just pull it on over my head, wiggle in a bit, and it's perfect.

Speaking of this fabric, I got this years ago, a cotton poplin with a bit of stretch, and I also got it in red, which is what I made my skirt out of for my 30th birthday vintage photo shoot! See?
As soon as I started thinking about what fabric to use for this pattern, the blue version I still had sitting there waiting jumped into my mind, I think it was absolutely perfect. In fact, if I do make another one, I'm not sure I'm going to be able to love it as much as I love this pattern with this fabric! It's a challenge I'll accept, though. ;-)

The only closure on the dress is a button and loop at the neck on the back, and I had to learn how to make a loop! (Thanks YouTube!) I rather enjoyed it and found it relaxing, I'm looking forward to using that skill more often now (I'd always been afraid of it before!)

The only thing I might change if I make it again is to fully line the bodice instead of using facings. I keep trying to use facings when a pattern tells me too, but every time I just end up finding them a bit fiddly and I always feel like they're about to flip wrong side out (even when I've tacked them and everything.) I did bind all the raw seams on the inside, all the facings, the waistline, and the hem.

Even with the slightly annoying facings, though, I think this dress is a huge success! It went together so quickly and easily, and was so comfortable to wear when touring the Fairchild Tropical Botanic Gardens on our trip to Miami, I felt like I fit right in with all the flowers around me. :-)