Monthly Archives: April 2013

Sewing with Vietnamese Silk

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Sewing with Vietnamese Silk

Golden Threads

Blogging has been really good for me; I’ve completed so many set aside projects that might have otherwise been relegated to the bottom of the “unfinished projects” bin had it not been that I needed something to write about.  This jacket definitely falls into that category.  I began it at least two summers ago and  got it up to the final sleeve before hitting a road block.  I thought about finishing it many times, but I think the fact that I didn’t have any pants to wear with it was part of why I never followed through.  Recently I found a nice rayon, that while not a perfect match, complements the jacket quite well.

 The jacket is made of a laundered shimmery rayon suiting and accented with the most beautiful silvery-green iridescent Vietnamese Silk.  I treasured this piece of silk and held it for a long time before deciding to cut into it.  I don’t often see this kind of silk; it’s a rare treat to work with.  The front is faced with washed duppioni silk and I used a metal button with a Celtic knot motif for a cultural paradigm twist.  Seams are a modified lap which, if I were making again would have been done in French seams (my new favorite technique).

unfinished jacket with silk scraps

It really didn’t take much to finish up the jacket and I’m quite pleased with the result.

rayon Tribeca jacket with silk trim

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Vintage Sewing – Tripping In Time

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Vintage Sewing – Tripping In Time

A Spin In The WABAC Machine

Dr. Peabody and Sherman at the  WABAC Machine

If you remember Mr. Peabody and Sherman, you just may be old enough to remember the influx of Indian fabrics into the American fashion scene that occurred during the fashion revolution of the late 60’s and 70’s.  Although that era has reappeared in contemporary  fashion and I’ve avoided it completely,  because of the been-there-done-that-it’s totally-hideous feeling that people often feel when fashions of their youth are recycled for succeeding generations.  Evidently enough time has passed, and even I can see the charm in this totally-funky-flower-power-paisley print that any self-respecting hippie would have loved.  The glitter packs a 21st century glitz that makes it seem fresh and fashionable.  And so… I gave it a try.

Peace and Love!

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I made it to wear during the warm weather, but it was cool out today, so I put a black turtle neck under it and that works perfectly making it something I’ll be able to wear year round.  How totally groovy🙂

flower power tunic

For those of you who may not be familiar with Mr. Peabody and Sherman, I have included a sampling of the kind of humor American kids of my generation grew up with.  Viewer Indiscretion Advised 🙂

Sewing Classic Summer Apparel

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The Season of Casual Comfort

linen casual wear

I came across an old pattern in my pattern library from 1998.  I remember making the vest and not finishing it, because I didn’t like the fit…or lack of fit is more accurate.   I am always intrigued how something I once didn’t care for can take on a new life and become a new favorite; whoever said fashion is fickle was certainly onto something.  Rediscovery is always a good thing; it means I’m changing and growing and open to new ways of thinking.  I like that!

McCalls pattern

 I began with Mcall pattern 9278.  I used updated constructions methods which I talked about in my last post by eliminating the facing and using French seam applications on all interior seams and sleeves for a streamlined look.  To give support to the buttonhole areas I created small uniform patches and fringed the unfinished edges.
button patches
Behind the fashion button, I sewed a small support button to reduce wear on fabric.  You could also use small beads in a different color to add interest and artsy elegance, especially if you plan to wear the garment open.
button application
The hemline and center front edges were turned under 5/8 inches and stitched.  A bias binding made from the fashion fabric was applied to the sleeve opening and neckline.  I used a linen open weave pattern for the top applying the same constructions techniques.  It was quick and easy very versatile.
finishing detailslinen casual wear

Sewing with Vintage Buttons Something Old, Something New

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Something Old, Something New

A Vintage Button Adds Interest

Navy Linen Jacket and Slacks

Earlier this week I finished up another linen jacket over the same Kwik Sew pattern I used recently.  It’s plain and simple with a nice clean look.  To add some interest I found a special vintage button in my button stash that went perfectly and added a good bit of interest.  Years ago my Great Aunt Squeak (yes, that’s what we called her) gave me her rather large button collection.  I remember thinking it was a great gift at the time and I have used many of her buttons on various garments over the many years her collection has been in my care.  This particular button was a one of a kind and just the right size and color for the buttonhole and I imagine that Squeak would be happy to see that it is in use again.vintage buttonI am not a fan of pull-on pants; I don’t really know anyone who is.  When it comes to casual unlined linen pants, I put vanity aside  both because this style is easy to make, comfortable to wear and doesn’t need to be ironed if you don’t mind the wash and wear look that is so popular here in the northwest.  To go with my new jacket, I found a nice putty colored linen for coordinating pants.   To provide detail, I created a slit at the bottom side seam and added top stitching.  All in all not a bad look.

pant detail

Chanel-Style Suit

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In the Pink

We had the most glorious sunshine for Easter Sunday.   Upon arriving at the church, the first person I saw was dressed in the same shade of pink; fuchsia pink seemed to be the color of choice for the day and was liberally  sprinkled throughout the crowd along with lots of orange.  I hadn’t realized quite how up-to-the-minute-fashionable the color was and ended up feeling very au courant in my Chanel style Easter suit.  Woohoo!

Chanel suit, Easter morningHappy Easter !