Archive for the ‘concept’ Category

New Project

May 15, 2007

Somewhere in my head I have this idea that I shouldn’t start a new project until I’ve finished the one I’m already working on. But you know what? Apparently, it doesn’t work like that. When I’m writing, I always find that I do my best writing when I let go and just write what I feel like writing. Trying to force myself to write stuff that I know I should write doesn’t work too well for me. So I’m not sure why I think sewing should be any different. So, a new project. This time, an alteration. Or maybe an adaptation, since it’s a pretty radical alteration.

I have a gold silk dress that’s been sitting in my closet for a long time. I bought it at what was, then, to me, a “fancy” recycling store, as opposed to a thrift store. It cost me thirty dollars, which back then, was a lot of money for me to spend on one item of clothing. I wore it to my graduation, because it was the fanciest thing I had. The last time I wore it was to a wedding, at least five years ago. The problem is, it doesn’t fit very well. (Yes, I’m standing on the side of the bathtub. It’s the only place in the house I can see myself in a full length mirror.)

Gold dress front

It’s bias cut, which can often be very flattering, but I find that if a bias cut garment isn’t cut right for my curves, it has the opposite effect. This has a waist and hip that’s too high for me, and because there is no flare under the hip, it tends to cling around my legs.

It’s also too high in the armscye. See the wrinkles across the shoulder?

Armsyce wrinkles

The only thing I particularly love about it right now is the back view:

Gold dress back

I think it has a lovely drape in the back of the skirt. (Sidenote: Do you know how hard it is to take a picture of your butt? I just about pulled myself into contortions for that picture. Never say I never did nothing for ya, dear reader.)

So here’s what I’d like to do. First, I want to lower the armscye and the bustline. To do that, I’m going to unpick the shoulder seams and then add some fabric at the top of the shoulder. The shoulders are finished with a self-fabric bias binding, and I should have plenty of fabric from the next part of the alteration to add more binding to my insert.

Second, I want to cut the dress off at the waist, and then add a shorter, knee-length skirt. The finished product should look something like this:

Gold dress design

Maybe with a waistband. Maybe not.

p.s. I’m not that demure. I just can’t draw hands.


Lace Hoodie?

March 16, 2007

So the pinstriped skirt project has hit a couple of stumbling blocks.

First, the bias strips are so much fussier than I had imagined. The satin does not want to hold a crease, and pressing in the folds is time-consuming, finicky, and slow. Also I keep singeing my fingers.

Second, I thought I had about a half yard of black corduroy which would be a great backing for the pattern pieces, and would also support a zipper. But I don’t. Well, I do, but most if it is part of another skirt.

So I went hunting around in my stash for something else suitable. I didn’t find anything, so I guess a trip to the fabric store is in order. But what I did find was this:

Lace from stash


Pinstriped 8-gore skirt — the concept

March 7, 2007

The first work in progress that I’m documenting here is a recycling project — a simple A-line 8 gore skirt made from some recycled pants.

Here’s a simple sketch of the concept.

Sketch of 8-gore A-line skirt

The skirt has a satin ribbon waistband and lace trim at the hem.