Saturday, April 25, 2009

Spot On - 1955 vintage skirt

This skirt all started out with curtains I made for my bedroom. I doubt you'd be interested in plain, boring tab-top curtains, but the colour itself is to die for. All the time I went through the chore of making them, I was thinking - gosh, this fabric would have made such a pretty dress!
Curtains had to be made, though, and rather sooner than later, as my appartment's windows are not fitted with blinds or shutters.

A few days later, however, I hung some Liberty fabric that I had just prewashed over my bedroom door, to dry (reduced space will make you pretty inventive); as I looked up, I realized the curtains next to it matched one of the spots in the design absolutely perfectly. I had just enough of my green taffeta left to accent a garment - as a belt, for instance... and thus the Spot On Skirt came to be.

My initial idea was to make this vintage dress:

Simplicity 1158, © 1955

But, I don't have that many skirts, and I have a few other dresses planned out anyway. I just figured a skirt would get more wear, and the reason why this Liberty had been sleeping in my stash for several years was that I wanted to make sure I'd make it into something I'd be wearing a lot.
I therefore decided to simply use the skirt part from the dress pattern, and add my own belt and closure.
I wanted something different from the regular dirndl, so I used the pleated version from the pattern (view B, the red one on the pattern cover). The skirt is really four rectangles of fabric sewn together, and pleated many, many times.
This picture shows a close-up of the pleats (and incidentally a happy kitty):

Despite the previous post suggesting the opposite, I went pretty obsessive with cutting and sewing perfectly on grain, and matching the dots at the seams.

(oh dear, even my bedcover matches my blog's colours!)
This was purely gratuitous, as all the tiny pleats make this kind of detail totally unspottable (ha!) when the skirt is worn. Still, I know my skirt is perfectly on grain, and therefore hangs as well as it can.

I first wanted to add an invisible zipper as usual, but then realized buttons might be cute and more in keeping with the skirt's era. I know zippers were already in use, but I also know my Grandma still used buttons way more readily than zippers at that time.
I like how the white buttons on the green belt mirror the green spots on the white fabric.

You guys all know by now who did all the work (I'm really just modelling), so there she is in all her fluffy glory:

I am now working on Butterick 5209, which I just had to get and make after seeing Trena's lovely version.
Happy weekend, everyone!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

The Truth Behind Kitty Couture

It is time some things were straightened out on this blog, and proper acknowledgement given.

When you see this piece of Liberty fabric laid out on the floor of a Paris apartment, you may be led to think that Isabelle is getting down to business.
Appearances, however, can be deceitful.
I, P'tite Mignonne, am really the one in charge over here.

I smooth out the creases...

Pin down the pattern...

And check the selvages are properly aligned

Next time Isabelle shows you a project - remember who truly deserves the credit... Part of it anyway.

See you soon with pictures of the finished object!

Thanks ever so much for your response to my last post. Being back, and being welcomed back, really helps. Thank you.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Burda Easy Fashion Spring/Summer 2009 - skirt #4
Burda Couture Facile printemps/été 2009 - modèle 4
(top is Vogue 2980)

Hi everyone... Remember me?

I've been sewing all this time, I swear. Less than I could - and would - have, probably, but more than the absence of posts here indicates. We'll see if I manage to get my act together and take pictures of what I've been making during this hiatus. If not, never mind - let's take it from here, shall we?

The reason I've been so silent is that P'tite Mignonne and are now back in Paris...

P'tite Mignonne endured the transition period with her usual sweetness, settled in quickly, and is obviously enjoying her new home. I'll post pictures of her soon, promise!

The skirt is from the latest Burda Easy Fashion (or Burda Couture Facile as we say here in France!). I love box-pleated skirts. I made it in real denim as I wanted a full skirt that would flare out on its own.

I made it in a size 34, ditched the seam allowances, then had to take it in some more. Oops.

Next on my list are dresses for spring! I have a thing for full skirts right now (as the example above testifies!), so the first one shall be made from a 1950s pattern, and in one of my Liberty fabrics, no less; the second one should be Vogue 1086, as soon as it reaches my mailbox. Also from a Liberty fabric that I grabbed just before leaving London. Life is too short to postpone happy treats.

I'm back for good this time, I swear!