Learning to make Baby Clothes

As I told you in my last post I now have a legit reason to indulge in all the prettiness that is baby clothes.

I bought this pattern about 5 years ago – the first time it looked to be an addition to the family.
And it’s been unopened and forgotten since.IMG_9229But this summer (after the happy news) I dug it out again.

I ‘ve never done baby clothes before, and are quite a newbie at sewing in yersey.
So the decision to leap onto the kids clothes train was a bit of a scary one.IMG_9228 I decided to start with a bodice for the little girl (yeah, pick the most difficult thing you cold find, why don’t you…).

I bought a super cute gender neutral fabric in grey and red, some red knit, white stretch bias tape and snaps.IMG_9231

Then I got to work.

IMG_9250It’s crazy how small amount of fabric you need for these kind of clothes. Compared to my usual sewing that easily swallow 5 m of fabric

I found a twin needle in my stash, and stitched a few test rows before getting the tension right.IMG_9233 IMG_9234

Using the patterns step by step guide (perhaps for the first time), I basted the small reinforcements of the shoulders.IMG_9235

And stitched the reinforcements in the crotch.IMG_9236

Then I turned the seams over, finished the crotch with a twin seam and stitched the bodice pieces together.IMG_9237

Then I set the snaps.IMG_9241They where not very cooperative, and I had to pray a few mistakes lose and try again.

I had some trouble deciding on the size for the ankle cuffs. Since the pattern called for whole foot pieces I couldn’t get any help from there.IMG_9238After some hesitation I decided on the bigger ones – better to big then to small.

I finished the bodice by trimming around the neck and armholes with the red bias tape.

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From the leftovers I made a quick little hat.  IMG_4773

Pattern: Burda Kids 9636

Fabric: 0,5 m of cotton yersey.

Notions: Thread, 7 snaps (front and back), 60 cm of bias tape and about 10 cm of red knit.

Time: 2 hours from drafting the pattern to finished.

Cost: about 100 sek – How knew that baby fabric and notions would be so expensive… I’ve made whole dresses for less.

Final thoughts: I’t was really fun to create such a quick and cute pieces. I liked it so much I immediately made another one (in about half the time) for a friends newborn son.

OK, lets talk: (WTF) Modern Halloween costumes

If you ever done a simple Google search on “Halloween costumes”, I’m sure you noticed all the female costumes explicit styles.

I mean come on, what is this! Sexy-Costumes2

Looking at the pictures from my last post the differences are just that more apparent.
_28100_600x450Withes at the turn of the 20 century.
Quality-Adult-Witch-font-b-Costume-b-font-For-font-b-Halloween-b-font-font-bWitch now.

And don’t even get me started on the gender aspect of this issue….

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adult-vintage-baseball-costume P453800
ops, I forgot my pants…”

These guys says it all…

 To be fair, not all costumes out there are this “sexyfied”. And actually I found some ones I approve of.
Couples-Halloween-Costume-Historical-Intro1930s gangsters

hardworking-lady-costume1950s hard working women

07209034.interactive.aOk, but apart from the “cheap multi manufactured look” I could totally dress as a 17th century witch.

But I would rather make my own costume. Here are some suggestions.
news_121211_anne_boleyn_01_8dcc3eb752Anne Boleyn – Alive and powerful or dead and scary.

Marcus_Gheeraerts_(II)_-_Portrait_of_Queen_Elisabeth_I_-_WGA08657Elisabeth I (Annes daugther) – perfect for any read-head 16th century enthusiast

kristina-till-hc3a4stQueen Kristina (of Sweden) – wear your fancy 17th century gown or cross dress in men’s riding outfits Kristina style.

Reine_Marie_Antoinette_13Marie Antoinette – Any fancy 18th century gown (francaise/anglaise/chemise) will work. Or you can go for the dead queen look.

60892-004-53D4AF1EJean of arc – if you’r more into medieval costumes.

Elizabeth_Bathory_PortraitElizabeth Báthory – If you want to go real dark, dress as one of the original inspirations for Bram Stokers Dracula.
She is on my list for possible Halloween costumes every year. maybe next year…

And if you want some more inspiration as to how to dress powerful, feminine and historical check out this site.
http://takebackhalloween.org/category/costumes/

Throwback Thursday: The Overly Fab Tuille Prom Gown

Since I won’t have anything new to show you until after the weekend, I figured I do a “Throwback Thursday” post, and show you one of my past projects.

This was one of those project with a steep learning curve, but which you will always think about with pride and a smile (before you remember the colossal amount of work and bad words uttered during the process of making it).

It all started when I offered to sew my youngest sisters prom dress.

– Let’s just start by saying that the senior proms in out town are HUGE.
Each year the couples attending the prom start practicing the Waltz in January. Then do so every weekend, until the prom in May/June, where they all (dressed to their teeth) perform a one hour, extremely complicated dance routine in front of thousands of people.

I think it’s needles to say that the dresses are extremely important during this day.

So in february I meet with my sister to discuss the dress design. She showed me her inspiration pic and told me what she wanted.New-Alice-in-Wonderland-Mia-Wasikowska-Photoshoot-alice-in-wonderland-2010-10340859-1126-1450Her original inspiration – The red dress from Tim Burtons “Alice in Wonderland”.

I drew some sketches for our next meetingimg002The idea was to make the dress in two layers, with a floor length under layer in tulle (which of course would have to be detachable to make a short dress), and a sheer shorter upper layer with ruffles and ribbons.

For our last design meeting I’d scaled it down a bit, and added some new interesting details like the curved lacing in the back.balklänning elin produktteckningWe had also trashed the idea of a detachable lower half.

In mars my sister traveled the 3 hours ride to the capital (where I lived at the moment) to fit the mock-up.
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It looks kind of ludicrous in these pictures, and the color is just awful, but I wanted to test the length of the upper layer, the curve of the lacing and of course the usual bust, waist, hip fit. Which actually were pretty good.

We also decided on the fabric.CIMG4346The gown was to be turquoise with the skirt tapering to black at the bottom, and a sheer dotted black over layer.CIMG4689I loved the effect of the black dots on top of the turquoise.

I stitched the interlining to the turquoise under layer, and then stitched the pieces both the inner and outer layers together
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I basted the dotted tulle to the under layer.CIMG4578

Then I did one extra foundation layer in which I inserted the curved boning.CIMG4591

CIMG4605CIMG4606I used a bias strip to the back side to get the nice curve on the lacing gap. The front and back pieces where now ready to be attached to each other.

CIMG4608The front and back stitched together.

CIMG4613I used a zipper at the side to make the dress fit perfectly, without disturbing the back lacing.

I used lengths of gathered dotted tulle as decoration to the shorter hem and strap. CIMG4585

I also used a heavy duty zipper as shoulder strap.

CIMG4630The back of the dress ready for some grommets.

I used a black satin ribbon for laces.

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CIMG4598Then it was time to start attaching the tulle.

I only had about 40 m or so of black and turquoise tulle to attach. phew…CIMG4645Starting at the top,working downwards adding more and more black to the layers.

CIMG4660Love the effect of different color combinations in the layers.

The finished dress took up so much space in our small apartment, that the only place I could keep it was in the almost empty hall closet.CIMG4680

The week before the prom, I brought the dress down to my sister and did the final adjustments on it. CIMG4886

CIMG4889I was really relived when I zipped the dress up and the back fit perfectly.

Then it was time for the prom.CIMG4987We had no difficulty finding her among the other dancers…

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CIMG5039My three sisters, all in turquoise – not intentional.

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DSC_0152And then she was of for the dinner and following party.

Untitled-1 - KopiaThe dress was picked out of 250 pictures to be featured on the front of our local newspaper.

Old Stuff Sold Of

I’ve just posted about all these fabolous books and patterns I’ve bought this spring/summer. And as my friend, whos working in a fabric store, asked after my umpteenth visit to the shop; How do you afford it?

There are acctually sveral reasons I can spend the amout of time and money on this hobbie as I do (even though I try to reduce the costs as much as possible).

The biggest reason being – I don’t make that much money, but I don’t have lots of expences either (no kids, animals, house, car ect.), so the only thing I spend it on (after rent, food, savings ect.) is fabrics and costuming pieces.

But me recent spending spree, comes from another sorce.

I’ve been selling of some of the clothes I’ve made trough the years.
And since the money earned came from sewed things, it is olny fair that I could spend them on more costume related stuff… Right.

Here is what I auctioned out so far.

A jacket in 1950s style, made in some wool/syntetic blend.207I really liked it, but somehow never wore it so better to get some space in the wardrobe.

A 1950s dress, made from a self drafted pattern in a green/black polyester fabric I bought on sale. The skirt is a “double cirkle” and contains about 5 m of fabric.322I adored this dress, and was a bit sad to let it go. But I know it will have a loving home with a girl who’s going to use it for swingdancing.

Another 1950s dress, made from the same pattern and fabric (only in another colour) and with a sligh variation on the waist and neck treatment. 237

A purple dress and bolero, I made about 5 years ago. The patterns are self drafted and the outfit are made in a purple dotted polyester fabric. CIMG2636 - KopiaThe girl who bought it also took the shoes :-).

Another purple dress from a few years past. The dress are made in purple polyester satin and black lace, from a pattern I downloaded for free from the internet.120I never liked this dress. I had to much trouble making it, and there are way to many flawed parts, for me to get over. For someone without my exreamly critical eye, it’s probably perfectly fine.

A green yearsey dress made from another free download pattern. 066I made this dress to wear to a party, but hated the way I looked in it, so I never used it (I wore the green/black 1950s dress on top instead).

A seersucker jacket made from a comercial pattern. IMG_4832I worn this maybe one time and didn’t like the way it fit, so this also had to go.

And here are some things that I will putt up for sale during this weekend.
If you se something you like don’t hesitate to take a closer look at: http://www.Tradera.se search for: asa86.

A halter top dress I made as part of my graduation collection at fashion school.halterneckklanning_modellI do think it is lovely, but the plunging clevage and halter top neckline are not something I can pull of. I think it is time for it to get a more loving home.

The bridesmade dress I wore to my sisters wedding about 5 years ago. The pattern are my own and the dress are made in purple polyester satin.lila tärnklänning i kyrkanI only worn it this once, and it looked great, but I’m over it.

A yersey tunic/dress made as yet another school project. The pattern are my own and it is made in a soft drapery grey yearsey. I think it is pretty cool.IMG_0671The hood can be used as collar or hood, and the back of the dress had lots of volume pleated into “wattaue-pleats”. And it is comfy to.

A black/white chiffong dress I made for my sister a couple of years ago.feab1af55d6d504cd345f3180029bc89

Another “worn once” dress from a free download pattern (I think I begining to see a pattern). The dress is made in green and white sturdy cotton (twill?) and zips up the side.CIMG3465I never liked the sleeves on this one, and thougt it made my arms and shoulders look huge. On a person with slimer shoulders it should look great.

This is acctually a dress I didn’t make. It is from the clothing company “Vila” and are made in a really soft and lovely printed chiffong.IMG_9621

A green chiffong dress from about 6 years ago, made from a comercial pattern.IMG_9630I never wore it since the gathering at the bust and the shape of the neckline and bust made me feel huge and way to top heavy.

Another bough piece. A circular skirt with lots of widths at the hem. IMG_9613I bought it at ” Urban Outfiters” and wore it once. I think it was the elastics at the waist that made me not like it, but looking at it now it do looks pretty cute.

And lastly, a light blue linnen jacket I made in fashion school.IMG_9642You know how it is with these “school projects”, the huge amount of effort and time you put into them, just to realise you hate the damnd thing by the end of it. There are absolutly nothing wrong with it, only I would never wear it.

I will also get rid of some bags, shoes and other smaler stuff.

So, there you have it – This is how I afford it…

Modern “Edwardian” Fashion

Every time I’m in a store I always look for possible costume pieces. The last ccouple of months I bought a pair of great regency-looking boots on sale, some nice shawls, and the perfect pair of pants to my planed steampunk outfit.

So the other day I was killing some time down at the shopping center, looking throuhg some of the biger clothing stores.

I had no intension to buy anything (and didn’t in the end), but I got a pretty hard time holding on to my wallet once I spotted some lovely blouses with a un-mistakenly Edwardian flair.

I spotted this one the moment I stepped in to the store.2014-03-14 16.20.58An ivory coloured cotton chiffong blouse with a lovely decoration and a resonably tight neck.

The blouse closes at the back with 4 buttons.2014-03-14 16.21.58

2014-03-14 16.22.03Close-up on beading and clouser.

This second one was hanging in the same section as the first one.2014-03-14 16.23.17A lovely lace decorated  blouse with a smal collar and front button clouser.

2014-03-14 16.23.30The back is a bit plain, but the blouse still looks great.

2014-03-14 16.23.42Close-up of lace and pin-tucks.

And finaly I found this short jacket on sale.2014-03-14 16.26.20The style would look awsome paried with a nice blouse, skirt and a big hat.

2014-03-14 16.26.32Close-up of sutage decoration.

I love that even if you don’t know how to sew, you can still get a petty nice historical outfit straight from the fashion stores.

New Years Dress 2012/2013

Since I didn’t had the time to make something new for New Years eve this year I will show you the dress I made and wore last year instead.

Early on I knew I wanted to make a dress to wear to the New Years party, so as usual I searced the internet for inspiration. I found this dress, and figured I make somwthing simular.

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I bought a turqouise and black shimery fabric, and som black lace in my local fabric store and got to work drafting a pattern.

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Deciding on a few changes from the original I made a sleeveless dress with a heart-shape in the front, and a flaring wide skirt.

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In the back there is a visible silver zipper.IMG_4488

The bust era are interlined and boned with several pieces of rigeline and made to fit snuggly to the body.IMG_4489

A also made a sepearte lace shirt with long sleeves and a opening in the neck.

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The neck are edged with bias-tape and closes with a button.IMG_4498

And the look togheter, and with a black belt added.

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Then I made my sister take som photos of me out in the snow.blä 040

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I really like this dress and thought about wearing it this year too, but decided not to since the company would be the same.

Christmas dress 2012+2013

For Christmas last year I wanted a new dress.

I searched for some inspiration and found this one.

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I really liked the idea of the studds, but the rest of the dress needed some changes. I drafted a pattern close to the original and sett out to by fabric.

I decided on red velvet and studds in different shapes and sizes.

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Then I sewed it up.

The only problem I ran into was geting the damn studds to grip into the thick fabric at the belt. But with some force and determanation I manadged to get them all in place.

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Then I convinced my sister to take some photos of me out in the snow.

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But this christmas I don’t have the time nor the energy to try to make another dress, so instead I decided to remodel the one from last year.

I didn’t really like it anyway.

The bodice was to short for my torso, putting the belt to high on my ribbcage. And the open back and sleeveless design made me feel naked and to concius of my broad shoulders.

The only thing I did like about the dress was the nice flaring and lenght of the skirt.

So the bodice needed to go.

I tryed it on once more before deciding, and then grabbed my siccors (or ripping knife), and started cutting the skirt form the bodice.

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I then re-made the waistband and the zipper in the back.

And voila a nice chrismasy looking skirt.

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I found a pretty white blouse on sale, and thougt of making some 50s style of hairdo. Paired with some heels and lipstick I think I have a chrismas Winner, which I will both fell pretty and comfortable in.

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A Merry Christmas to you all.

AD Shoes Giveaway!

The amazing American Duchess have an ongoing Giveaway contest, and the price is her new style – “Claermont” 1930s oxford.

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The style is so beautiful, I would wear it to both historical and modern clothes. I realy like to win…

You should also check out her other products on  www.americanduchess.blogspot.se/p/shoe-shop.html, which I’ve become a total fan of.

Mother of the bride

About a month ago I decided to help make a dress for my boyfriends work college. Her daughter was getting married and she did´t had the time to order one from the bridal store.

So I agreed to help.

All she wanted was a simple black dress with a boat cowl neck and a small sleeve, and a short jacket to mach.

I made some sketches, took her measurements and made a toile.

It fitted pretty dreadful, and needed a lots of alterations.

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I needed to take the dress in quite a lot, and adjust the back length and darts. The front and shoulders also needed altering.

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The Jacket needed to be lengthen in font and taken in by bigger bust and back darts. The shoulders also needed to be dropped a bit to fit nicely.

I would have made a second mock-up but there was simply no time since I needed to go to Stockholm for work in three days time.

We decided to make the dress from a black polyester taffeta and the jacket from a light pink polyester/silk taffeta. The combination looked really nice.

I started to cut the fabric within an hour from the fitting and basted and sewed all the rest of the evening and the next day.

Then we had a second fitting, which went much better. I only needed to make some minor adjustments.

On the next evening she tried it on, and happily brought it home.

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I haven´t heard anything yet, but I´m hoping that everything went well and that she (and her family and friends) really liked it.

Laced in neo-Victorian Corset

For the photoshoot of the victorian corset and bustle with my sister, we also decided to take some cooler pictures in a more neo-victorian/burlesque way.

We used the building site next to my sisters home as location, and the pictures turned out great.

She is wearing: blommers, petticoat, skirt, stockings, corset, bustle, high heeled boots, bolero-shrug, lace mittens, necklace and a hat. All of the accesories and stylings came from our closets (except for the mits which I bought for the shoot).

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IMG_3290Model: Elin Petersson