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Oct 2, 2015

New Fabric, New Books, and MORE!

I went fabric shopping this week and the theme was cotton flannel.  No neoprene for me -- yet.

Nothing says fall like a flannel shirt and these classic plaids should be fun to sew and snuggly to wear.  I'll probably make one for Michael and one for me.  I also picked up some gray coated cotton for an outerwear project that may or may not happen this year.  Maybe next spring as it's quite lightweight.

I was back in Patternmaking class on Wednesday and we practiced dart manipulation.  We learned both the slash-and-spread method as well as the pivot method (where you pivot the sloper, attached to your drafting surface with a pushpin).  I enjoy both, though the pivot method is a little faster.

Meanwhile, I've been working on a gingham shirt for a client.  I haven't sewn with gingham in years and I'd forgotten that it's the fabric that most makes me feel like I'm going blind.  The results are lovely but wow, is gingham hard on the eyes.

For the first time ever, I made a collar with narrow slots for collar stays.   It's not difficult to do but it does require careful measuring.  You have to account for both the seam allowance (in my case, 1/2"), since you're going to turn the collar right-side out, as well as the topstitching allowance (for me, a scant 1/4").  My first try turned out well (below, before topstitching), only I forgot to factor in the topstitching, which made the slot too shallow for the stay.

The slots are made by adding a second layer of fashion fabric to the undercollar.  This second layer is lapped over the first and stitched into place; the stitching includes the narrow slots for the stays.

Below is my second, successful version.  The nice thing about stays is that they keep the collar points looking sharp without having to use cardboard-stiff interfacing.

For the inside collar stand I used a red, white, and blue check for contrast.

The collar and stand, not yet sewn onto the shirt
I cut the yoke on the bias and used a light interfacing to keep it from stretching.  Sometimes bias yokes stretch, creating slight horizontal folds.  Don't like 'em.

Finally, I received two new (to me) sewing books in the mail today, Sewing 911, which cost just pennies (plus shipping), and Clothing Construction by Evelyn A. Mansfield (from 1953), which cost considerably more.  The latter is an old textbook with a lot of classic details you'd expect to find in a vintage sewing book.  I've only scanned it but I think it will serve me well.  Are you familiar with either of these?

And that's it.

Readers, I hope your sewing projects are going well.  Remember: Not enough ease?  Godets!

Have a great weekend, everybody!

Sep 29, 2015

Things I Don't Get, Vol. 16 -- The Neoprene Craze

Neoprene -- you know, the stuff they make wetsuits out of -- is now a popular fashion fabric!

Sep 26, 2015

And speaking of al.

Readers, today we visited a wonderful street fair/flea market that takes place once a year just a block from my apartment building.

Sep 24, 2015

Peter Models the Plaid Overcoat!

My coat is finished!  You can see me model it here.

Sep 22, 2015

Ponchos for Men -- YEA or NAY?

Readers, I have never been a fan of the poncho.

Sep 18, 2015

Plaid Overcoat Progress + More Pattern Drafting!

My plaid Burda overcoat is coming along slowly but surely.

Sep 15, 2015

Remaking a Coat Pattern from Six Years Ago, et al.

Readers, I don't know how I managed it, but six years ago, with little more than two months' sewing experience under my belt, I made Burda 7780 (above).  It turned out pretty nice, especially from a distance.

Sep 10, 2015

Sep 8, 2015

Say Hello to My New Elna Grasshopper!

Readers, this has been a good week for me sewing machine-wise and it's only Tuesday!

Sep 6, 2015

Home Again + TWO New Sewing Machines!

Friends, you can exhale -- I'm back!

Aug 28, 2015

I'll See You In September!

Vacation Eve!

I have not been out of town in a very long time and I'm really looking forward to a break in my routine.  Can't wait to eat some lobster!

Aug 25, 2015

Modeling My New Summer Outfit or "Pink Pants-a--palooza"

Readers, my last Mood outfit of the summer is complete!

Click here to see it.

Aug 23, 2015

Liked It So Much, I Made Another!

One of the garments I'm complimented on most frequently when I wear it is the blue cotton shawl-collar sweater I made a little over a year ago.

Aug 21, 2015

The Mystery of Phoebus Dressmaking Patterns

So I was surfing aimlessly through the vintage pattern pages over at Etsy, as I am wont to do from time to time, when I stumbled upon this.

Aug 20, 2015

Susan Models Summer Separates!

Susan's back and looking sensational!
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