Thursday, February 17, 2011

I gotta do what I gotta do

Here is a list of things I kinds feel I should be working on.
  1. Make my second muslin for my 20s dress. I am going to do at least one more muslin, but then I am going to leave it at that. (Probably.) I am curious to see if I can get a better looking silhouette, but I'm not going to beat myself up over it. This style may never look good on me.
  2. Work on my Colette Patterns Crepe dress. I am having some issues with the bodice fit, and have set it aside since before Christmas. I'll get back to it because it would be a perfect spring dress.
  3. Make some nicer shirts. I need them.
But, I am not working on any of those things. I have temporarily lost interest and have decided to draft two new dresses.

The first is for my pattern making class. The assignment is a black dress and here is my drawing. (The certificate students all do their drawing with Illustrator.)
At home, I am working on the dress that was my alternate choice for the class assignment. I thought it would be fun for spring. It will be navy with the neckline piece in red. (I'm also thinking about putting some little red buttons around the pocket edge. I won't really know until I see it in real life.)

I just want to enjoy sewing, and sometimes that means throwing all my plans out of the window. I sure am having fun with these dresses, though.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Sewing Through the Decades: 20s dress pt.1

Behold! The most unflattering dress pattern of all time! (It does not help that my muslin is a little too stiff for this style, but really, it's sack.) (And actually, I can think of at least one other dress pattern I tried that was less flattering.)

This pattern is taken from Making a Dress in an Hour by Mary Brooks Picken (1924.) This muslin took me about 2 hours and I did not do any of the suggested finishing. Basically this a pamphlet detailing a method where you fold, measure, and cut directly on the fabric to achieve this fabulously stylish garment. (Picture does not include the belt, which actually made things worse.) It's basically a kirigami dress. (Kirigami is origami that you cut into.)

The top is one piece of fabric and there are no darts in sight. I am undecided if I am going to try to modify this to be a better dress. (Sometimes it would be nice to open a pattern and just make something, you know?)

Things That are Really Wrong:
  1. Too long. I know this was the length for day dresses during this era, but it's not working for me.
  2. Too wide.
  3. Sleeve is unflattering length.
  4. You can't see the skirt side flaps, but they are waaaay too short.
  5. Neckline not so great for me.
  6. Need to find right spot for waistline. (This one is weird because I had to add on more fabric to the bodice because I cut it wrong.)
Not my finest moment, but it was a fun way to send an afternoon.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Sewing Through the Decades: 20s and 30s

Ok, so I have chosen to follow a slightly different path for my Sewing Through the Decades dresses for the 20s and 30s. I have two books that show you how to draft patterns from those eras, so I am going to give that a try.

From the 20s, I have a pamphlet from Mary Brooks Picken on how to make a dress in an hour. (Amazon has three other books from her on a similar theme, but I got this from PDF Classic Books for $2.95. It appears to be a different publication.)
My favorite quote from this book:

"You may receive a phone call at one o'clock inviting you to a little impromptu gathering of friends at three, and you can go, if you wish, wearing a dainty new frock make in the time you would ordinarily spend wondering what to wear."

Unlikely, but it looks fun. There are no darts in these dresses, and I suspect that any creations I make from this book are going to look like a big sack on me. I may add darts, I may not. If it looks like I could actually make a wearable dress from this, I might put some extra effort in to make something I might actually want to keep.

From the 30s I have Dress Cutting: Instructions for Sewing 26 Vintage 19302 Fashions.

None of these dresses on the cover are actually in the book, which is kind of annoying. There are however some cute things that I'd like to try to make. This is another book without any darts, which makes me hesitate a little bit. I need a dart. Usually more than one. But, we'll see. I can make this work, if it looks like I could get something cool out of it. I'm not as interested in dresses from this era (I love to look at them, but I am not sure how suitable they are for my figure) and I'm willing to take the risk that my efforts will be in vain.