Thursday, June 25, 2015

Summer Outfit with McCalls 6965

Hey there sewing fanatics! I've been meaning to show you this outfit since the end of LAST summer, and I finally got some decent photos to share.  I needed to make an summertime outfit that I could be cool and comfortable, and not all that fancy in. So immediately I wanted to make silk shorts.

Ok, I'm not so good at being super casual in case you hadn't noticed. I actually made this outfit to wear to a racetrack last September, and everyone else was wearing actual casual clothes, like boring khaki shorts, yuck. These pictures were taken on Island Beach State park on the Jersey shore where we planned to do a little hike with the dog but were eaten alive by bugs one minute into our walk. I'm not so sure silk shorts are hiking apparel. 

The top is semi drafted by me, I took a princess seam bodice that the fit was already altered, and drafted a bottom to make a top. It's barely a flared shape. I then went ahead and added three rows of rick rack to it, because everything need rick rack, Duh. The fabric is a quilt weight cotton, one of those reproduction 30s prints from Windham fabrics. I bought the fabrics for the top and bottom at Fabricland. 

The shorts are McCall's 6965, but if you go to the website and look for them they will be under SKIRTS. I assure you this is a shorts pattern. I had to do some lengthening in the crotch region ( I hate that word, and I hate that I have to use it so much, talking about sewing all the time), as well as making the shorts a little longer. I think they are a pretty good length now. There is a little problem when it come to wearing these shorts and riding my bike. This silk goes flying in the air and won't stay down! 
It has a zipper at the center back, I made mine invisible because I hate putting in center zips. I think I will make another pair out of chambray, but would they technically be Jorts? What do you guys wear to be summertime casual when a dress is not really practical? 

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Friday, June 5, 2015

Fruit Dress: Vintage Simplicity 2507

This dress has all my favorite things in it, rick rack, fruit prints, and spinning ability. So obviously its amazing. I needed a dress for a fashion show for the class I've been teaching since January, Project Fabricland. It's a Project Runway inspired competition for students ages 10-18. They each had to design and sew an outfit inspired by a dessert.  

My class with Sonjia Williams fro Project Runway All Stars

The dress is a vintage pattern, Simplicity 2507, but with a gathered skirt. I was afraid the fruit print was going to look weird with the paneled skirt. Plus vintage patterns are so long and I didn't feel like chopping off a million inches. I had to make the bodice bigger, and do a fba. So it was stupid to even buy the pattern I could have just copied the picture. Whatever. I seem to snatch up any vintage pattern that has an opportunity for rick rack.

The fruit print is a quilt weight cotton, as soon as it came off the UPS truck at work, I knew I had to have it. I love love love a fruit print, but I am very particular about it. I don't like it when they look lifelike, they have to look vintage kitschy. I snatched up four yards for this dress, and ended up needing more. I made the skirt SUPER gathered. Its four panels of the fabric 45" wide. It's excessive, but makes for great twirling. 

This print looks like a picnic, so the gingham rick rack was a must. I also made deep patch pockets, to fit my iphone, and because pockets are a place to put MORE rick rack. I was planning on putting rick rack on the hem, but I stopped myself. So now I have 5 extra yards of black gingham rick rack.

I bodice is a skosh too big, and about a quarter of an inch too long, but I think the skirt is heavy and pulling it down. I also made a big hem, because I love they way it looks, its about 4.5".  If you follow me on Instagram, you have seen my watermelon shoes I bought a few days before this fabric came in, making a match made in heaven! 

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Monday, June 1, 2015

McCall's 6696, Liberty Print

What is it about Liberty fabric that just screams "SHIRTDRESS!!!"  I got this gorgeous Liberty print for Christmas this year (thanks Mom!) and I have been trying to think of the perfect thing to make. The McCall's 6696 shirtdress has been going around the blogosphere and it looks amazing on everyone, I thought I would try it out. 

I had just enough fabric to make the sleeveless version of the fuller skirt. I made a muslin of the bodice, and even with the different cup sizes for this pattern I needed to do a bit of an FBA. Based on some other reviews of this dress I took 1" of gathering away from the centerback. It still poofs a little, but I'm glad it took it out. 

 I also took off some of the shoulder width. Why do sewing patterns think everyone has linebacker shoulders? It makes no sense! Does anyone else find this problem? The buttons are from Fabricland, they match the shade of green perfectly! I used a woven fusible interfacing, which I think maybe was a little bit too stiff, but the collar stands right up! This was my first pattern with a collar stand, so I was a little nervous about that but it was a piece of cake. The only downside to this pattern is all the handsewing. Oi. 

I added some secret details to the inside. Leftover bias tape to the hem, and perfectly matching printed rick rack to the waistband. I only wish there was a place for it on the outside! I took these pictures on an expecially windy day down the shore (I'm from New Jersey, yes we really say that). The Liberty tana lawn is sooooooo fine that I was flashing everybody while walking the dog, any just of the wind sends this skirt flying! Oopsie. So that is my version of the famous  M6696, have you made one too? I was thinking of making a shirt version. 

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