End of year 2012

Oh what a year! I cannot stress how thankful I am for all the blessings bestowed to me this year. It definitely was not without upset but all disappointments have lessons. 

My sewing machines and I really worked this past year on a number of large and small projects for myself and for others. I must say I've seen quite a bit of improvement in my skills and technique in just about 12 months. I started using paper patters to complement my freehand pattern making. I made beautiful dresses; I got a good working serger from my grandmother and it has been a great help. To top it off, I have realised more than ever I have family and friends who want to see me excel and succeed with my dressmaking, that's most important and fulfilling.

Matter of the day:

This is a dress I made for someone for the end of year. It's made of bridal satin which is a bit weighted. I used an inspiration photo to create the dress. 

Simple victory: I was able to do the bodice for the dress by pinning points on my dressform corresponding to where I wanted the the neckline to form. I then measured and made pattern pieces drafted from the pinnings on the dressform (just me being creative and different i guess). I think that's why the dress fits the dressform like a glove. Lets hope it's the same on the client. 

Biggest challenge: Doing the gathers at the waist. The fullness of the gathering and the thickness of the fabric made it a little challenging. Thank goodness the machine and needle was able to handle it.   

This was the dress I used to develop the design. The neckline here is a little more square than my dress turned out. I also opted to move the gathers from the shoulders and put it at the sleeve hem, it actually made a big difference in the shape of the dress.
Dress front
Side front

Sleeve side with gathers at hem


Dress bodice back

Other view

 I hope you enjoyed! All the best to you and yor families for 2013. I wish you all health, strength and sewing sucess! God bless!


Metallic Blazer- Party over here!

It's that time of year when you can walk around with sparkly clothing and everyone will know you're celebrating the year gone and the new year to come. Anything sequin or metallic goes, well just about!

I made this jacket in a soft metallic knit fabric with sparkles of green and and blue. It has 4 snap closures at the front. Pair this with a black mini skirt or dress and it will be a hit. 

I used a simple shirt pattern to do it. I left out the waist darts and added a bust dart from the side seam. I cut it short to reach about 4 inches just past the waist. To do the lapels and cross over effect I extended approximately 4 inches out from the shirt pattern front and center. I then cut diagonally from the front shoulder seam across the neck to a point on the extended front. It does not hurt to improvise with the patterns you already have to create another look. Give ti a try!

I hope you enjoyed, God bless!


Peplum tee shirt

The peplum fashion is taking the world by storm, or so it seems. I am quite fond of this fashion feature on blouses, skirts and dresses; to me it adds classy flair to an outfit. The peplum is also being used in tee shirts which gives a more casual look to the style. We all know how tees have their place in our wardrobe!

Pictured below is a simple jersey top. Such a  look is created using gathers at the peplum which fall quite softly about the figure.

Rebecca Taylor Jersey Peplum Top
The other casual peplum tee below is made using the circle method. It also falls gently down to the hips.

short sleeve peplum top by Green Envelope

I attempted to make a peplum tee out of a jersey fabric. I will show you two looks that can be created with jersey. I much more prefer the stand out peplum looks (see photo of Alexander McQueen peplum top below) created with fabric with more body. I will show you how to achieve such a look with the comfort and resilience of jersey fabric.  
Alexander Mcqueen Peplum Top in Purple (fuchsia) - Lyst
Alexander McQueen Peplum top

To create the top I used the Lydia pattern from Burdastyle for the bodice (cut to waist level) and sleeves. I drafted a full circle peplum to fit the waist size of the bodice. I assembled the pieces and completed the top to all stages except the hem of the peplum. Notice how the peplum falls loosely and without much structure, similar to the first two pictures above.

I then went further to make the peplum stand out a bit more. To do this I used 3/4 inch bias binding along the hem.

The first step is to stitch the right sides of the hem and right sides of the binding together. Only use about a 1/4 inch allowance on the hem. This will prevent distortion of the peplum shape.

After the bias binding has been attached all the way around it is then folded over towards the back of the garment and pinned. The bias binding will be completely on the reverse and will not be seen from the front of the garment.

Stitch the biased binding flat all the way around in positions pinned. This would be done on the other unstitched furthest part of the bias binding.

This is the final result. of the jersey top with the ends binded. It looks more flared with this method and it makes a plain jersey peplum top more outstanding. The peplum does not fall as gently as in the earlier photos.

I hope you enjoyed the post, God bless!


Chiffon blouse in sliver grey

I fell in love with this fabric as I saw it among the pile of chiffon and georgette fabrics. It is a beautiful silver grey that glistens a bit in the sun. It has tiny brown flowers on it with some blue leaves...or at least that's how I see it.

I used the Burdastyle pattern Printed blouse-09/2012 to create my chiffon blouse. I bought the pattern because I love the look of the front gathers at the yoke. The pattern worked well to create what I wanted and can be pretty versatile. I'm of the impression the blouse pattern is not meant to be tight. I found it odd that there were front waist darts with the shaped front pieces, but I put them in anyway.  The collar could have been a little smaller and the button positions seemed to be a bit off but I loved how it turned out. I know what adjustments to make next time around. There are two other looks that can be done with the pattern as sold. I opted to leave the sleeves out of this version.


I ended up with a loose chiffon blouse that is comfortable beyond belief. No pulling nor tugging across any part of my body.   

Check out my lovely buttons to go with the blouse. Some mixed pearly blue with silver rims. I love them!

I hope you enjoyed, God bless!


A striped dress

I had the pleasure of putting together a dress earlier this year for a competition based in Australia, the Tessuti Awards. It's a fabric store over there in Australia with a great selection, as a matter of fact the just celebrated their 5th anniversary. I must say it was a good experience going up against international talent. I did not make it to the finals but i was glad to have had the opportunity. I still think my dress rocked!.

I used a navy and natural stripe silk fabric. I don't recall ever working with silk twill before so that in itself was a challenge as the fabric was so soft and slippery. The design features were of hidden pin tucks. Hiding the colours was a challenge as I had to be mathematically precise.

I made a shift dress with front and back details. The dress is about knee length and is fully lined. The design features were of hidden pin tucks.

I hope you enjoyed! God bless.