I love to use Pinterest as my virtual bulletin board. As you might guess many of my pins are sewing related. Click here to see what fun stuff I've found and pinned to different sewing boards.

Friday, April 8, 2016

Stitching on the Straight and Narrow - Tip for Sewing slippery fabric

Oh,  my sister,
Keep on the Straight, the Straight and Narrow.
Keep on the Straight Side with My Lord!*

Sewing this Liberty Tanna Lawn is a somewhat slippery proposition. In addition to stitching through tissue paper, I find that strips of narrow post-it tape (in addition to pins), help me to guide my machine needle along a straight line.
~ ~ ~
Have you heard my Laurel Loves London audio/podcast, where I shared my visit to Liberty - The Home of Tanna Lawn?

* Though I enjoy singing Gospel style music, I don't actually know any gospel songs that incorporate the straight and narrow theme, so like any good singer, I created my own.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Princess Seam Shirt - Blue Sky Pattern Alterations - M6076

Blue-Sky M6076 - With a few alterations

As I'm getting comfortable with fitting this princess-seamed shirt pattern M6076

I'm blue-sky sewing (that's the kind where you don't actually sit at the machine, you just dream it up and plan to get on with it as soon as you can fit it in). My first blue-sky dream, is a sleeveless, denim (non-stretch), scoop neck top, with an exposed zipper. It will be similar to my Western Winds version - but with no collar and a scoop-neck cut away. Also I'll probably tighten the fit a little, since denim tends to stretch when you work with it. I'm thinking either a lining or an inter-lining.

I'm wondering about using flexible stay-tape on the princess seams as well....

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Ench By Sew-41: Fit for a Princess – Fitting Princess-Seams

Click on this link in iTunes  to download the 41'st episode of the Enchanted by Sewing Audio Podcast,  recorded in February of 2016. Or listen directly on the web by clicking on this link.

What is a princess-seam? A princess-seam is intended to mirror the shape of a woman’s torso. It’s a long, lengthwise curved seam midway between the side seams and the center of the garment. You might see a princess-seam in a women's nightgown, camisole, swim suit, blouse, shirt, dress, or coat. The lines you’ll typically see in a bustier, or merry widow garment, are a good example of princess-seams.

Princess-seams are sewn into the front and/or back of a shirt. They may start at the low or high hip,  the waist , or wherever the bottom of the garment is. In a fitted cropped top they’ll start at that bottom crop point, in a dress or coat, without separate skirt pieces, they are probably at the hemline. A princess-seam usually moves up to the armscye (armhole) or to the shoulder seam.

Often a princess-seamed dress does not have a separate waistline at all, since it does its shaping without darts. A -Line dresses often have princess-seams.

Well executed princess-seams can add a long sliming look. 

In this episode 

Primero /First  -  Royal Reflection – My own ideas about sewing history and choices I made for my recent princess-seam sewing.

Entonces/Then – Technicos for Princess-Seam fitting – What techniques I’ve been using to fit my princess-seamed shirt pattern

* For my princess seam pattern,  I used M6076 0 a Palmer and Pletsch pattern

* Coco  Chanel's Sleeves https://cloningcouture.com/2014/08/04/chanel-and-the-sleeve/

Monday, February 22, 2016

Princess-Seamed Aurora - On her Way (M6076)

Slowly but steadily M6076 Princess-Seamed Aurora shirt comes to life. Still primarily basted. Her sleeves feel comfortable, and boy has it been comfortable getting a sleeve pattern to fit!

Onward to real seams.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Cutting Out Aurora - The Princess-Seamed Test Garment

Dear Susan,

More progress on that princess-seamed shirt muslin (M6076)  ...
You and I talked last week, about the troublesome set in sleeves on my muslin. Too tight across the bicep, funny wrinkles in both front and back. You so kindly looked up an article for me as we talked about how I might redraft the sleeve pattern.

Did I read that article? Oh, after you spend time searching it out, I didn't!!!! Instead I realized that I was just so tired of putting my minimal sewing time into muslin work. I wanted to be able to get on with garment sewing - even if it wasn't believing I had a perfect pattern to use for my beautiful piece of Poppy and Honesty Liberty of London Tanna Lawn.

So I simply tried another sleeve - the one we drafted for our slopers, in sloper/moulage class. And you know, it just looked close enough for government work, when I safety pin basted the sleeves in. I had the full rotation for arm movement I needed, and didn't see funny pinches and wrinkles in the bodice. So I went ahead and cut out a test garment - Aurora - a 2 yard, 5 inch remnant from my fabric inventory. Aurora will serve the dual purpose of muslin - getting the sleeves working, and a garment I can wear. 

The garment is the story isn't it? And there comes a point when, I just want to quit drafting the tale, finish the editing, and get it out for reading.


Monday, February 8, 2016

Sleeves are Troublesome: Discussion with Susan

Dear Susan,

Here's that princess-seamed shirt muslin (M6076) we talked about. I'm noticing....

* Two sets of diagonal wrinkles across bodice

* Bicep stretches across tight -  but I know for sure sleeve cap should be 3/4 inch longer than curve of armscye. It's not now.

*  I cut back the armhole on this side , so I lost the extra in the sleeve cap 
*  I think the  front pull up means I dropped under arm too much?
* Is the tight bicep maybe because I'm missing 3/4" ease, or because armscye is too low ?
* Hmmm why does back stretch across now? Torso fit fine in the sleeveless version and in this muslin before I added sleeve

Friday, January 29, 2016

Ench By Sew-40: Year of Monkey Inspires Sewing

Click on this link in iTunes  to download the 40th episode of the Enchanted by Sewing Audio Podcast,  recorded in January of 2016. Or listen directly on the web by clicking on this link.

Kunghei fatchoy!*

The Celebration of the Year of the Monkey begins  just a little over a week from now. This month’s  “Enchanted by Sewing” show celebrates sewing inspired by the Chinese Lunar New Year

This episode:
Primero /First  - A brief introduction to the Chinese Lunar New Year



Entonces/Then: My audio notes from the show “China through the Looking Glass” a very popular textile and fashion show that ran  last summer 2015, at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City

Y Tambien/And Also:  I include reflections on my own experiences with Chinese inspired patterns, textiles and fashions.


. . .

The American mid 20’th century musical “The Flower Drum Song” is a great way to get a sense of Euro-American people’s awareness of Chinese –descent communities in their midst. 

Chinese fabrics and styles, whether from history, stories, films or  a growing awareness of Chinese culture, have inspired elements in my sewing, since before I first put a needle into a piece of material.

Remembering where my inspiration to create and sew comes from, is just one more thing that keeps me…

Enchanted by Sewing

*In Cantonese “Happy New Year” is “Kunghei fatchoy “ (/gong-hey faa-chwhy/)