Monday, February 21, 2011

sunday sewing (plus a little on monday)

it's cold outside and i'm feeling a need for spring, so i got out fabrics old and new and traced off several patterns from my latest japanese pattern book acquisition. i hadn't made anything for myself since last year at precisely this time, so i traced off two dresses and got everything all cut out.

lila helped
 the cat was very helpful when i was trying to cut out the pieces.


i chose a rather upholstery-weight, rich and beautiful, jewel-toned fabric that i bought several years ago for the dress (see mom, it IS ok to buy fabric with no purpose in mind - the purpose will come). it's super simple and will look great with a pair of bright tights and some fab heels i bought in manila - as soon as the snow melts.


i'm going to adjust the pattern for finishing the armholes and i have yet to hem it, but here it is so far. i'm madly in love with this fabric.  and i love the rather retro a-line style.


with the tunic dress, i got a bit fancy and made a patchwork fabric for the bottom part - using the wonderful mid-century modern reprints from the victoria & albert museum collection. i hope to wear it at the market that i'll be selling handmade goods at (with elizabeth and jude) in sønderborg april 9. because you should wear handmade when you're selling it, right?


it can be a little bit difficult to find your way at first, but this tutorial really helps and because the drawings are so good, you'll soon be sewing merrily along even if you don't know japanese. i usually make one size bigger than i think i should because the japanese patterns tend to run small, but i have to say that i wish i'd made the large and not the extra large, especially on the dress below. so if you should be tempted to acquire this everyday clothing book too, just go ahead and make it in your regular size, as the sizes are much more generous than they usually are. i maybe would have realized that if i'd measured, but instead, i decided to just wing it.

here's the patchwork dress in its finished state:


it looks less like scrubs on top when you actually have it on, i assure you.

18 comments:

Deleilan said...

Lovely, LOVELY dresses! Those bold, bright flowers could almost make the snow melt all by themselves! ;-)

(Aren't cats the best assistants?)

nacherluver said...

Dang! Mad sewing skills. Wish I could do that. Off to check out your links. Thanks!

MissBuckle said...

Oh, I love those :-)

Tracy Golightly-Garcia said...

Hey Julie

Love all the dresses!!! I feel you will be getting an e-mail soon:)

You have a beautiful cat.

Best
Tracy :)

Elizabeth said...

The dresses are gorgeous and I love your idea of wearing something had made at our market.

Jess said...

I always admire hand sewn clothes. It makes me wish I had a sewing machine...and the skills to use it. I love them! What a great way to brighten up a day :)

Kim: said...

Love both dresses! Oh, I really want to learn to sew. (*sigh*) This is inspiring!

stitchinglife2 said...

Wow, what fabulous clothing. Well done indeed! Love those funky fabrics too.

kristina said...

they are gorgeous! love the first fabric especially.

kristina said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
McVal said...

They both are so pretty! I need to do more sewing for myself...

kristina - no penny for them said...

wow, i'm so impressed!

thanks again for the link - that's super helpful. i've got a japanese pattern book for kids' clothing and one for bags. we'll see how it goes...

mrs mediocrity said...

both are beautiful. project runway for you next?

Writer Lady said...

They really are lovely dresses and I'm sure they look even lovelier with a person inside. I buy fabrics just because I like them. It's the practical ones I don't sew up.

Artist in the Arctic said...

ahhhh! LOVING all that juicy color!!! lovely dresses!
You must post pics of you wearing them this spring!!

Karen said...

I'd just do an easy bias facing on those armholes and put the dress on!

http://www.fehrtrade.com/article/347/how-to-sew-a-narrow-bias-edge

http://www.flickr.com/photos/reedlepageandrews/3749191527/in/photostream/

Then show us those fabulous shoes!

Char said...

love that first frock - so cocktail hour too!! :)

Sammi said...

beautiful dresses. so jealous. i wish i had the time and talent to do something like that.