Sunday, 28 February 2010

As promised, here are a couple of pics of me wearing the Gossip Girl dress. Apologies for the squinty-face, at 10am today when we took these pictures it was already up around 30 degrees. We were going to re-shoot with sunglasses on but then I would have had to go outside again and that would be bad!

Doesn't my poor garden look sad? Don't worry, it will recover when the weather cools off.

Here is the front: And the back:

I love the sense of completion from a finished project, but not as much as I like starting new ones! Onto the McQueen Jacket...

Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Gossip Girl Dress - Done

Hi, remember me?

I have been so unwell the last few weeks, tired, dizzy, headache-y etc. I went to the Doctor and had a whole bunch of blood tests but they showed nothing so all I ended up with was the very helpful advice to 'sleep more and try to exercise'. Gee thanks doc, I never would have come up with that on my own! Fortunately I am feeling a little better, and have even managed to get a bit of sewing done. Voila, the Gossip Girl dress, which I really should rename since it looks nothing like the inspiration dress!

My fella is still working nights so you will have to make do with dummy shots for now. I'll do a photo shoot and write a proper review some time next week (if I have my boy back by then).

Here's the front:

And the back:

Some close ups of the dye effect on the midriff front and back:
Rather than pleat the bodice and lining necklines separately and sewing them right sides together I laid the pieces wrong sides together and pleated them together as one. Then I bound the edge using the 'french bias binding' technique demonstrated on the Threads Insider Techniques DVD (I think volume 2). I used a piece of the tie-dyed silk to make the binding piece.
I love how this finish looks and usually do this sort of thing on a pleated neckline so it doesn't turn out too poofy.
I also used a Threads DVD technique on the hem (this time volume 1 I think). This is a really great hem as it's super narrow but without making it ripple on the bias sections.
So there it is! I am really happy with how it turned out and I am relieved to have finally finishing something! I am not going well on my 30 project goal, I think a few simple pieces may have to happen soon!

Friday, 12 February 2010

Sad news

I was shocked and saddened today to hear the news that Alexander McQueen had taken his own life. I don't know what to say except that my heart breaks for the pain he must have been in.

Over the past couple of weeks (whilst in my sewing slump) I have revisited the Alexander McQueen Kimono jacket published some time ago now on SHOWstudio.

This jacket has been on my wishlist for ages and I have recently been toying with the idea of at least making a toille/muslin if not a finished jacket. I will definitely be doing that now, as a small tribute to Mr McQueen's talent.

Would anyone like to sew-along as a way to pay our respects?

All images are from SHOWstudio

Sunday, 7 February 2010


I am feeling very unfocussed at the moment. It could be that I am sick of summer and want to get into autumn already or it could be other things but I am just not able to concentrate on anything for any length of time.

I have made zero progress on my gossip girl dress (guess I really do need a deadline!). I've made half a skirt that turned into a wadder and I've been trying to come up with a fix for the bamboo cardigan I made last year, as the neck has stretched out so much it falls off my shoulders. Mental note, next time try knitting-in elastic (not that the pattern mentions this!). Oh yeah, and I've been re-reading all my style books to try and get inspired.

I have plenty of me-time just now since my fella is busy with the Perth International Arts Festival. He's working on a UK production of Six Characters in Search of an Author. He's been doing 11-hour days through the bump-in and rehearsals and is now on show calls, which is every night. He came home last night and told me one of the actors is Ian McDiarmid, which is pretty exciting to me, being a massive Star Wars nerd (I am old enough to have seen all six films in their original cinema release!). For the non-nerd readers he played Senator Palpatine/Darth Sidius/The Emperor - not that you non-nerds will even care who that is! Apparently he is really nice though, not at all an evil take-over-the-universe kind of guy at all.

So I have no excuse not to have been sewing, except whatever it is that's currently blocking me.

To pass the time I have been doing a little knitting while watching a bunch of chick flicks that wouldn't normally get a look-in:
This will eventually be the Featherweight Cardigan by Hannah Fettig. It's another top-down raglan but this time in incredibly fine yarn. I would love to knit challenging cables and bobbles and colour work but, as satisfying as that would be, I just wouldn't wear it (or I would look like a clown if I did) - I just don't have a sturdy enough bone structure to pull of anything fancy! So endless acres of black stocking stitch it is - and let me tell you, there is nothing to remind you of how old you are getting like trying to knit black yarn at night!

The yarn is Centolavaggi by Filatura Di Crosa. One 100g ball contains enough yarn for the entire cardigan (about 1,500 yards). This ball only cost $19.50 which is a total bargain IMO. The other bonus is that the finished cardigan will only weigh 100g - perfect to throw on over a camisole or t-shirt to keep the chill off.

I loved this yarn so much that I went back and bought another ball, this time shade 1503, it had gone up (to $22.50) but is still a bargain for a whole garment's worth of yarn. I think it will be a while before I'm ready to start on it though!
Here's hoping I can get out of my sewing slump soon!