Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Wedding Dress Deconstruction: The Original

With permission of the original blushing bride, here is a full view of the dress that I have been talking about, complete with tiara. If you are just joining in, I am helping a very good friend of mine take apart her mother's wedding dress and reconstruct it for her to wear in her May 2012 wedding.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Wedding Dress: Muslin Stages

When I posted last, we had ripped apart the original dress into its various pieces. From there we pillaged even more. We broke down each piece and lace trim was seized from cuffs and the neckline for possible further use. We know for sure that we will not use the original front bodice pieces since they are too short, even with tweaking. Rather than be sorry later, we are still holding on to everything until it is all done...just in case.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Back with Wedding Bells On...

I thought that the best way to get back into the swing of sewing after returning from my time in Italy was to help one of my very good friends with her upcoming wedding dress. Have I ever made a wedding dress? No. Have I ever worked with lace? Um...no. Have I ever made a boned bodice? Still no. But, am I hopeful and ready for this challenge? Absolutely, Yes! And is my friend a forgiving, easy-going person? Yes, thank god.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

The countdown & pretty dresses.

One month and three days. That is all that is left of my recent Roman life. I have been trying to make the most of it, which is why I haven't posted in awhile. We have also had loads of visitors, which meant eating out, seeing the city sights again, more eating out and (more importantly) the sewing machine stayed tucked away.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Sew Along Updates...

I have been busy. Not so much sewing, but busy none-the-less. My parents came to visit for two weeks and left for the cold Northeast last Saturday. It was great to have them visit, but it left me no time for anything else. We did a lot of traveling; a southern Italy trip: Pompeii, Herculaneum, Positano (on the Amalfi Coast), Ravello and a northern trip: Sienna, Florence, Orvieto. Phew. No wonder I was exhausted when they left! I had a great time and even got to show my mother the fabric store, and of course we didn't come out empty-handed ;)

Saturday, March 12, 2011


When I get to the part of a garment where I have to fit the sleeves in, I always start to sweat. It is nerve wracking for me. Setting in sleeves always gives me major problems. There is always way to much ease, and I always tend to get that gathered look as opposed to a sleek sleeve. Well, I assumed this time for the swing dress was going to be no different, except Casey did a tutorial on how to get rid of sleeve ease on this dress pattern. It was super helpful, but then I made it more difficult for myself. Let me explain.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Midnight Pocket Madness & REAL Swing Dress Progress

I have been true to my word and have been working extremely hard on this thing. I have been by myself for four days (my husband is away in Sicily) and two of those days have been spent mostly sewing. There was some work I had to get done and I had to feed myself, but very productive!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Blog World: Sewing et al

I intended today to post about my progress on my Swing dress, which is coming along nicely, but instead I find myself slightly teary eyed at the situation of a woman I have never met. If you have never been to the site Bakerella, and you like anything cute, sweet or cake-like in any way, you should head over there. Unfortunately the Queen of Cake pops has been very sick with a failing donated kidney. For some reason, this brought me to tears this morning. Again, I don't know this woman nor will I ever get to meet her. But I feel like I know her, which is a strange and unusual; this woman has let me (and thousands others) into her life through lollipops made from cake. This is the way we live our lives now. A family of strangers.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Muslins for the whole family!

Lately I have been busy more with visitors than with sew-alongs, which is why I haven't posted as much as I would have liked. And there are many more visitors to come, too! I need to get my act together, I had such a strong start, so that I can wear some of these creations here. Okay. Here is where I am with my swing dress:

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Negroni: A Drink, not a Shirt (not yet, at least)

The Negroni. What I should be hearing is the lulling sound of crushed ice swimming in dark booze in a cocktail shaker waiting to be poured into a nice willing martini glass. Instead of those lovely sounds, I hear the puffing of steam escaping from my sad iron. Let me say, pockets are hard. Actually, let me rephrase, *round* pockets are hard. Even with a template. If you look closely, my round pockets are not very round.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Swing Dress: Muslin #1

Well. It was a productive weekend, I believe. Friday was the day that I revamped my bodice pattern with the sba tutorial that Casey had put online for everyone. On Sunday, she posted a note about her measurements being a little off, and I think I need to take out a bit more (maybe another half inch) from my bodice. But her instructions were great and I am not as hesitant to try my hand at this again. I cut out my muslin with extra seam allowance and then I was off.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Swing Dress: Taped and Traced

This is what my day looked like yesterday afternoon. The top photo is just the first page paid out togther, but not taped yet. The first page had twenty pages to tape together, the second page had 25! It took my about an hour and a half to complete both pages. Although I did have a cheese break in the middle :)

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Sew Along Prep: Swing Dress

I am trying to be involved in two different sew-alongs that will run somewhat concurrently. I am following Casey from Elegant Musings to sew this swing dress from Sensibility patterns. The second, as you can tell from the dashing button of our beloved Peter, is the man's shirt sew-along, which will be my first foray into sewing for a guy. Or more importantly, for my husband.

Monday, January 24, 2011

First Trip of the Year: Tuscany

As I mention I arrived in Rome last Tuesday and had two days of rest before repacking my one bag that arrived (out of two) and headed up north. We rented a car at Fiumicino and started for wine country. The weather was not really our friend on this trip, but that is Italy in January. I would like to say that is was better than the snow in New England, but we didn't finish our trip without snowflakes falling. Still, it was beautiful.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Sheath Dress: What is wrong with this dress?

Essentially I believe it is too big. I can only assume that in my two months home, since I was away from three course meals, lots of pasta *and* lots of wine, that my body changed between the first time I started the block to the final sheath dress. I mean, I guess it isn't a bad thing that I lost weight, but probably the only time I will admit that it makes me a little frustrated. Here are some pics that confirm my belief:

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Body Block: Sheath Dress (almost done!)

It is very late, almost 1 am. I am going down to Boston tomorrow (or today) and if I don't post this now, it may not go up tomorrow. Here is a shot from earlier this evening. I am further along than that, but it is too dark to try and take another picture and I need to go to bed. 

Monday, January 10, 2011

Body Block: Sheath Dress Progress

The body block has been made, and from that I have created the pattern for my sheath dress. I altered the neckline and shoulder line of the dress. Above is a shot of all the pieces starched and ready to go. Once on my fabric I need to add ease to the pattern and add the length of dress plus hem.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Another Goal: New Home Sewing Machine

Remember this beauty? I am pretty ashamed of myself. I have owned this for a little less than a year (about ten months) and haven't touched it until yesterday. Honestly, I was so worried about breaking it that I hesitated to even thread it. Using this machine was on my list of things to do before I left for Italy the last time and I never got to it. This time (since I have ten days left) I thought I might give the sheath dress a try on the New Home. So, toss another goal on that pile!

Friday, January 7, 2011

2011 Resolutions

You all have them, even if you don't admit it outright. At the end of the year, I think we all make a mental note at what we want to accomplish or do differently in the next year. Whether it be health, work or hobby related, I think no one is really void of this. So here are my goals for 2011:

Thursday, January 6, 2011

The sewing elves were a bit distracted...

...and realized too late that a size ONE sleeve should not be attached to an altered size FOUR bathrobe. Otherwise you end up with this:

It looks like I made it for a little T-Rex. (And those pockets are in the same place on either side, it just looks funny because of they way it is laying. I swear!)