08 July 2019

Catching up on my latest quilt projects

So, as update on a the earlier post about my latest beachy quilt, I now can show you the final pictures. The quilt finally got done - I finished the edges with a wide light blue bias strip around the edges and rounded corners and used a binding sewing foot to keep all the layers of fabric and laying flat while stitching.

Perhaps it's not the right colors for the cold winter months we are experiencing in Johannesburg right now, but I absolutely love the blue and beige colors as it reminds me of the beautiful blue sky on a typical winter's day and of the different blue colors of the ocean. The colors and the style is so soothing.. I think I'm totally sold on the hexagon shape and could definitely make another hexagon quilt in the future. Mmmm, maybe it's time to check my scrappy stash again..... 

So now the next scrappy quilt project I'm planning is for my daughter in various left-over blue and pink fabrics. I just love the idea of little Russian dolls (in various sizes) in the centre of each block and I am about half way with the final number of blocks, so here is a little pic to give you an idea of the overall look. 

And in order to create the pattern with the pink and blue fabric strips, the colors are strategically placed. The right and bottom strips are shades of blue and the left and top fabrics strips are in different shades of pink. 

After these are done, I will add another layer of pink and blue strips around to get to the final block size. 
Below is an example of 4 log cabin blocks, that placed together, make this visual pattern. 

29 April 2019

Formal wrap dress with knit fabric

With a last minute scramble, I have to find a suitable outfit for a wedding that is less than a week away. My preference is to make it of course, also because all the stunning dresses I've seen in stores are in different shades of brown. Igg. Unfortunately the browns and yellows in the winter colors don't work with my complexion very well.

I've decided on a lengthy wrap dress, in a woven knit fabric and went to a local fabric store in search of something suitable and found a stunning knit fabric (below), that I think will do the trick.

There are tiny gold flecks in the fabric and the colors are perfect! And I can pair the dress with a formal dark green coat on the night.

So, now for the dress pattern. I would like to do a longer wrap dress this time, with raglan sleeves and couldn't find such a pattern so I had to settle on a course of 'franken-pattern'.
Wrap Dress Burda 10/2011

Wrap dress Burda 4/2015

First, I traced the top pieces from the April 2015- model and then the skirt pieces of the Oct 2011-model, both in size 40. No need even to draft a new pattern, just cut out the pieces and sew together. I did do a quick check to make sure the skirt and top pieces match up at the waist widths.

Then on to the construction of the dress. I normally like to start with the overlocker to neaten all the edges. Next step is stitching of darts

At this point, the bust darts are completed on the front and back pieces, following with the shoulder seams. The facings are then stitched together at the should seams and attached to the neck line of the dress.

Here are the 2 sleeves lay out flat. By merging the 2 pattern pieces together I only had to stitch the curved shoulder dart.


And here is the dress, completed and pressed, hanging on the dress-form. It fits perfectly over the bust and neck and the waist closure is also very comfortable.

The dress is a bit long as I added a few cm's to the bottom seam and now the skirts ends up feeling heavy, so I might decide to shorted a bit at a later stage, but for now I like the longer length and will keep it this way.

And here is a photo of me wearing the dress to a party this past weekend. Actually, now that I've worn it again and had a good look at it in the daytime, I think I'm ok with the length as it is!
So, now I can work on some of my unfinished projects that are waiting for my attention... I did manage to make a few Barbie outfits this weekend. Those quick, spur of the moment projects are always the best!

11 April 2019

Wrap dress sporting flutter sleeves in bubble chiffon

This weekend I was very busy with the construction of a dress for a client. She needed a new outfit for a friend's wedding that is coming up soon.

So let's start with the design - a wrap dress with diagonal darts in the bodice, waist ties and flutter sleeves. My client just loved the darts in this design, as it creates a very flattering drape across the bust area. 
The fabric is a soft woven print, called bubble chiffon but I've seen it named bubble crepe as well, depending on the weight and of the fabric. It is so pretty and lovely to handle. The bubble in the fabric allows for a slight 2-way stretch, and makes it easy to work with and also to wear. I will definitely consider it for a future project if I come across it again!

The picture below was taken after the neckline facings and shoulder seams were done, because I wanted to see how the pleats look like on the model.

Then I added the self-drawn flutter sleeves and for anyone still wondering, I've included a quick draft and picture thereof below on how to draw a new pattern for a flutter sleeve on the fly.

Start off with the original sleeve pattern, and cut vertical lines from the hem to almost at the sleeve cap. Then spread the pieces apart to make the pattern wider and fuller at the bottom.

You can adjust and spread the pieces to add as much flare as you want.
The final shape of the pattern will look a little funny, that's perfectly fine. So now you have more fullness at the bottom, but no gathering or poofiness at the cap of the sleeve.

The sleeve were an elegant solution and suits the dress in this case perfectly, adding to the summer feel of the dress. 

She promised me a final photo with her wearing the dress and I will post once I get it.

Quick update of the post:

And here she is!! The dress is a perfect fit and she looks very happy with it. Here she is posing for a little picture, before going in to her friend's wedding.