Thursday, December 14, 2017

A Professional Fitting by SewTo Fit

This January I'm going to New Orleans to attend a boucle sheath workshop taught by Helen Haughey. In preparation, I decided to treat myself to a professional muslin fitting of the pattern I plan to use, McCall's 2401. Long out of print, I think it's the epitome of a classic sheath and I have made it many times.
Still, inasmuch as I am going to be spending a good amount of time using couture techniques on the boucle, I wanted an exceptional fitting muslin for my project. Enter A. D. Lynn of Sew to Fit. Many of you know Andrea from her incredible YouTube videos. I met her through my friend Roz, owner of SewMuchFabric  one of the premiere online fabric stores and founder of the Sewing Fashionistas group here in Houston. I was fortunate enough to spend the better part of a day with Andrea at her studio and came away with a perfectly fitting muslin worth its weight in gold! 
Prior to arriving Andrea asked me to sew up a muslin of M2401. I think we can all agree this sack is reminiscent of the Branch Davidian wives of that crazy David Koresh in Waco some years back.
Well, Andrea started doing her wizardry, somehow being hilariously entertaining at the same time, and in a matter of hours she had whittled that sack into a sleek muslin.  

Magically, she transferred that muslin on to a flat pattern that I can trace off with any of 3 different necklines and with or without seam allowances.

After finishing Andrea asked me to sew another muslin to check the fit. Having 101% confidence in her technical ability (and since I’m not crazy about sewing muslins) I told her we were going to live on the edge and use fashion fabric. I had just received this Double Espresso Boucle from Roz at Sew Much Fabric and thought it might be perfect. It has a random weave of metallic throughout that sadly doesn’t read in my photos. It was wonderful to work with and steamed and shaped beautifully.

Being a boucle I underlined it with silk organza to avoid any stretching in back from sitting:

The underlining was also invaluable for stabilizing when clipping the corners of the square neckline:

I love a contrast lining and this one really works with the boucle:
Andrea heartily calls herself a geek and I concur. I can’t say enough about her expertise at fitting. I learned so much about my body and why I could never fit certain areas without drag lines in the same old places. Guess what? I am so NOT symmetrical! All of my pattern pieces are unique and accommodating different quirks in my physique. It’s an amazing process and I highly recommend treating yourself. Her blog is so head over there to see what she's all about. Next time I’m going to have pants done!
Thanks for reading and enjoy the upcoming holidays!


Sunday, April 23, 2017

Wardrobe Basic: The Glam Spring Trench

While most parts of the country are still enjoying some chilly spring weather, here in Houston it’s warming up so my outing to the Art with Heart Gala last night may have been my last opportunity this season to wear the fabulous spring coat I made. This glam trench is another in the series of Wardrobe Basics by Roz at Sew Much Fabric.
We selected a beautiful mid-weight metallic gold stretch linen with accents of a cream and gold brocade. The pattern is from the 02/2017 Burda Style magazine, #103. The suggested coat in the magazine is unlined but I drafted a lining for mine using a lovely rayon lining also from SMF.

I especially like the attached belt and pleat detail. It has lovely shaping through the waist and I really love the back.

I looked and looked for just the right buttons and they were under my nose the whole time! I made covered buttons using the brocade. And not only are they the perfect accent they were a cinch to make.

I had never drafted a coat lining before so I’m sorta proud of the this one. I even kicked it up a notch and added piping!

I know I will get a lot of wear out of this great basic with its neutral-with-a-kick color palette and timeless design. All fabrics still available at Sew Much Fabric so hurry over!

Friday, January 13, 2017

Cheers to Wardrobe Basics!

One of the main staples of any wardrobe is a basic, button-up shirt. My favorite is the Sewaholic Granville. Although Sewaholic patterns are drafted for a pear shape, which I am definitely not, I have successfully tweaked this pattern with an FBA and a slimming down through the waist and hips. Now, it is my go-to shirt pattern. I also like to make my shirts more of a tunic length. Just a personal preference.

As an addition to Roz's Wardrobe Basics series for Sew Much Fabric, I made this shirt from a metallic linen that was a joy to sew with. Can had linen have drape? This one does! It's been a long time since I've so enjoyed shirt-making and I attribute it to this great fabric.

Since I had a neutral palette to work with I decided to experiment on an idea that is in keeping with my new found obsession with all things Moroccan. When I returned home from Marrakech in November I had the embroidery module to my Bernina waiting for me. I'm self taught and I've been experimenting all over the place. I found these Moroccan buttonholes and knew they were meant for this metallic linen.

The buttons I found on Etsy and took a chance on them but their absolutely perfect!

Okay, I reviewed the jean jacket on Pattern Review but didn't blog about it so it's making a debut here, as well. The 100% cotton denim also came from Sew Much Fabric and it has a great weight, perfect for behaving with steam and for setting snaps but it's not stiff. It's comfortable to wear. Again, along with my obsession with the colors of Morocco and now my embroidery module I went a little crazy and did a motif for the back of my jacket.

I love being able to add these two great basics to my wardrobe! Thanks, Roz!