Thursday, July 21, 2016

• Nautical 1940s Blouse •

Today's post is about a simple little blouse I made back in March of 2015.  This post has been very long in the making!!  ;)  Somehow I just never got pictures of it, so we remedied that this past week.

The fabric was originally purchased for an apron, but true to form, I cobbed it for a garment instead.  ;)  The only problem was, there was just one yard of it, so I had to come up with a way to fit a blouse out of that amount.  I settled on using Simplicity 1692, and sewed a strip of solid blue fabric on the bottom of the blouse, a couple of inches below the waist.  I never wear the blouse untucked, so it works out just fine.

Things didn't go quite as smoothly as planned, however.  First off, I had a dull needle, so it was pulling threads to its heart's content on the shoulder seams before I realized it.  Boo.  It has only taken me, what, 3 years?  But I finally am remembering to check/change needles between projects, and in between times as well.  It's definitely worth the very slight effort to avoid ruining a garment. 

The second hiccup was one that is rather hilarious; I picked up the scissors to snip off a stray thread, and what do I do instead?  Just snip a hole in the back of my blouse.  No big deal, you know.  AGH!!!  I patched it up as best I could (which wasn't that good, but.....), so I don't really notice it now, but what a thing to do!!!  Lesson learned; be extra careful when clipping threads with giant shears.  :P 

The neckline and sleeves are edged with baby ricrac, and a bow accents the front neckline.  It's a very simple style, but a rather cute one nonetheless.

Ironically, I ended up making a scarf out of this striped fabric, which happened to be the accent fabric that I was going to use on the nautical apron.  :)  Rather unfortunate for my Etsy shop, but nice for me!! 

Paired with the blouse is my Vogue 1019 skirt.  My wardrobe is severely lacking in the skirt department, but I am working on a 1940s skirt right now, so hopefully that problem will be remedied soon.  

Thanks for stopping by!!  :)

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Wednesday, July 13, 2016

• Civil War Series, Part III •

It is time for the final Civil War Series post, at long last!!!  ;) 

As you probably have gathered by now, we had the grandest time wearing our dresses and taking these photos, so be warned; there are quite a few of them.  There were just too many fun ones to leave out.  ;)  I hope you enjoy them!  

First off, however, is my mom's dress!  It is made in the same basic style as my dress, with only the slightest of variations.  Her fabric was purchased from Whittle's Fabrics as well, and is also an 1860s reproduction.  The color and pattern of the fabric suit her so well!!  :)

It was so fun to have a different location for each of our dresses to be photographed in, even though we were in a very small park area in town.  We'll definitely be going back there for pictures!

She used gorgeous pearl buttons for a false front effect.  We happened to have the perfect buttons for each of our dresses in the stash, which was a rare and exciting happening!  ;)

Her bonnet is also from Regency Austentation, decorated with beautiful silk taffeta from Ensembles of the Past.  I love how the colors of the silk match her dress so perfectly!!

Accenting the neckline is one of her grandma's many crocheted collars.  And speaking of crochet, Mom made her reticule from her own self-drafted pattern.  She is a regular trooper when it comes to crocheting, and is never satisfied until what she's making is just perfect.  I think she definitely succeeded in making it that way, don't you?  :)  It is made of cotton yarn and lined in cream-colored cotton fabric.

One simply must have watched the movie "Cranford" to fully appreciate this photo.........  ;)

Some of us elegantly fan ourselves, some of us  primly fix our bows, and some of us just twirl.  ;)  It is rather addictively fun in these dresses, I must admit.  

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Thursday, July 7, 2016

• Red, White & Blue 1950s Separates •

My mom made this blouse for the 4th of July, and I found it utterly too fabulous not to share immediately.  ;)  

She found this nautical novelty print fabric at our favorite antique shop in La Crosse, Wisconsin (Antique Corner) for $0.50.  It is such a cute print, and the colors were perfect for a 4th-of-July-themed blouse!  The tiny polka dot fabric (JoAnn) was the perfect accent.

She is currently working on a dress made from a vintage 1950s pattern that Robin of Auntie Establishment on Etsy so kindly sent us, and this blouse is essentially the wearable mockup from that pattern.  It is always nice to be able to put your efforts into something wearable when making a mockup, rather than something that you can never wear.  

Robin sent another pattern for a stunning draped 1940s dress that I can not wait to get started on!  (What am I waiting for, that's the question.....!!)

She made tiny strips of binding out of the polka dot fabric to accent the sleeves.  It adds such a perfect nautical flair, don't you think?  

Her skirt is made from a 1950s pattern, but she altered it so much, it might as well be her own self-drafted pattern.  ;)  It is an eight-gore skirt, with in-seam pockets, incidentally, made from the most wonderful poly or poly-blend fabric from Hancock Fabrics.  I think a large *SOB* covers that subject pretty well.  

The waistband of the skirt, as well as the front, is accented by button tabs that act as belt loops when she wears a belt with it, but just make for pretty accents when she doesn't.  Gotta love that fun '50s flair!!

As always, she matched up the pattern *precisely*.  I think I shall hire her to do all my matching from now on.......... ;)

These cute little round buttons were the perfect accent for the blouse, and she sewed them on in groupings of three for added vintage flair.  I have the same buttons as well, and can. not. wait. to put them on *just* the right dress.

Her shoes are sadly hidden in most of these pictures, and I believe it is their first airing on the blog!  Sadness!!  They deserve a whole post to themselves, I think.  ;) 

They are the cutest shoes ever, inarguably, and she got them for an incredible price.  Miss L Fire "Betty" sandals, which retail for $165.  I happened to be browsing on Modcloth one day, and lo and behold, they had ONE pair of them left, in size 8.5, which is what she wears.  For $50.  Yep, you read that right.  Needless to say, they came our direction very shortly thereafter.  Now if I could just shrink my feet by approximately 30%, I could wear them too!!!  ;)

This blouse and skirt of mine are fairly new makes as well, but I wanted to save posting about them until they are paired with the right pieces.  This photo was too fun not to share though.  ;)

I recently added a clearance section to my Etsy shop, so do hop over and check it out!  Have a lovely week, and thanks for stopping by!  
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Wednesday, June 29, 2016

• 4th of July Polka Dot Dress •

Since I missed posting (again....) last week, I thought I'd take a break from the Civil War series and share my latest creation; a 4th of July-themed dress! 

This fabric was originally intended for my birthday dress, but the lemon fabric ended up taking its place.  Finally I decided to make a fun 1950s dress that would be suitable for the 4th of July!  Although it's not quite your typical patriotic blue color, it has enough fun flair to fill the gap, don't you think?  ;)

I really wanted to use ricrac on the dress, but not just around a collar or some such; I wanted it sewn into some seams, like on Tara's polka dot dress.  I finally settled for this late 1940s Chicago Tribune Pattern (side note to Gina: based on the postmark on the envelope, this pattern is from 1949 or before!), with a circular skirt.  Thankfully, earlier this year when I purchased the fabric, I got 6-1/2 yards, plus an additional 1-1/2 yard piece, so I had plenty for a nice, full, circle skirt.  I didn't end up using the 1-1/2 yard piece, but that should make an awfully cute little girls' 1950s dress.  :)

The pattern I used has two tucks coming down from the yoke seam, with gathers on each side at the waist.  I really didn't want it to be blousy, but rather more fitted, so I narrowed the bodice pieces down and drafted darts instead.  Let's just say it's a miracle that the fabric survived that many unpickings!!  ;)  I was only basting the darts in each time, but it still ended up being an awful lot of sewn and removed stitching lines.  The end result is what counts though, and I am very happy with how it came out!

The ricrac I used on the bodice was from a vintage packet, but the ricrac around the skirt was new.  I went to the local fabric shop to get some, hoping to get 7-1/2 yards, because that's what I thought I would need, based on a preliminary measurement around the unhemmed skirt.  They only had 6-3/8 yards at the store, but I bought it anyway in hopes of it....growing.  ;)  Thankfully, once the skirt was hemmed, I ended up only needing approximately 6.12 yards, so I had a nice little piece leftover.  Happy day!!!  :D

Since I was going for a fun, casual look with the dress, I opted for a contrasting sash, rather than a belt.  

One feature I really love about this dress is *the pocket*!!!!!!!  :D  I used to be a total anti-pockets-in-the-side-seams person, until I was reminded of the fact that certain types of side-seam pockets are actually really nice.  As long as they are sewn into the waist seam and not just the side seam, they lay beautifully and are downright handy to have!  Hence, my first side-seam pocket.  And I am officially a convert.  ;)

Since I haven't wrapped my mind around how to insert a zipper and a pocket in the same seam yet, I'm sticking with a right side pocket for now, since I've noticed other seamstresses doing the same.  Easy, and too much fun!

When one is wearing a circular skirt, one simply *must* take the obligatory melting-dress photo.  ;)

I mentioned having changed the tucks into darts earlier; it was not such an easy feat on the back bodice!  At first I made the two little tucks on each side at the top, with a dart coming up from the waist below them on each side.  What resulted was a nice, big bubble on each side.  Hmm.  Then I tried just taking a couple of tucks at the waist on each side.  More bubbles.  Finally I had to just continue the tucks down to the waist on each side, taking in the needed amount of fabric at both the yoke and waist seams.  It worked, and hopefully doesn't look too out of place.  

This is actually the first real circle skirt I've ever worn!  I have made two of them before, one in a green diagonal plaid, that sadly did not fit, and the other being on my remade 1950s dress.  Although the '50s dress has a circular skirt, being it was taken off of my original walkaway dress, it does not hang quite like a standard circular skirt would because of the original way it was cut out.

Happily, this dress convinced me that I do indeed like circular skirts!!  :)  They might be a little frightening in wind storms (check the forecast before choosing outfits, perhaps?), and a little painful to wear when one is cutting out a project on the floor, but other than that, they are a delight to wear.

I was able to do a little over a 1" hem on this skirt as well, which was fun!  I was afraid it would have to be eased in an awful lot, but it really didn't, and was surprisingly easy to hem.  And perhaps the slightly heavier hem than on my previous circular skirt will help ward off the inevitable results of those undesirable gusts of wind.  ;)

Thanks to my mom for the gorgeous buttons!  I originally planned to use some rather monstrous red ones that I purchased at JoAnn, but they were utterly too big.  These were just the ticket, and beautiful to boot!  :)

If you haven't done so lately, do stop by my Etsy shop!  I have recently added several garments to the stock, one of which is in a smaller size, and can be custom ordered in a different fabric of your choice.  And there is a sale on through July 4th; receive 20% off when you use the coupon code HAPPYFOURTH.

I hope you all have a lovely week and a very enjoyable 4th of July!  Let us pray for our country, that the Lord would grant us a revival, and our country would return to the values and beliefs that its founders stood for.  Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord! 
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