Saturday, September 10, 2016

Fireman, Fireman! Save My Skirt!!

  1. violation or misuse of what is regarded as sacred.
    "putting ecclesiastical vestments to secular use was considered sacrilege"

There's this huge issue regarding wearing vintage clothing. Well, lots of issues but for this post it's the dreaded Altering Vintage Clothing Issue.

I am fairly slim in the wallet area, so true vintage is typically out of my reach. However, my trips to Goodwill sometimes pay off. In this instance, I found an obviously vintage novelty skirt.

This is the fabric, but my skirt has quite a bit more yardage

Drindl, slightly faded with age but still adorable. There are two problems though. Too small, and too long.Easily fixed with some relatively inoffensive stitching, to adjust the waist and tuck up the hem.

Me, imagining fitting in this skirt. Im the Elephant.


The waistband was too fragile and fell to pieces under my hesitant seam ripping. Upon review the slight fading of the black has multiplied the problem. I cannot find an exact match, not to any of the colors. So how can I make a waistband?

A second problem arose. The skirt falls a few inches too long, a good three inches since I'm so short and that's without waistband. But the pattern is border print. To hem up, would lose the nice black edge, to hem down from the top would lose the top fireman.

It was a pickle.

After some review and inspection I noticed that there was a nice deep three in hem tucked up on this skirt. Perfect for a nice high waistband. But... to cut this would require an irreversible act. You can't uncut fabric, as we all know.

I chewed this conundrum for weeks. Silly to get so stressed about cutting fabric but well, welcome to sewing!

Finally I caved. Due to my butchering of the waistband, no one would wear the skirt. It was a goodwill find at 4.99 $, so I can justify cutting it.


Carefully I seam ripped the hem stitch, and eased my Mundials down the creased line.


It was done. The desecration of a vintage skirt.

Side note, measuring the hem-turned-waistband gives us a whomping 177 inches! TWIRLY!!!

Because Im not a monster, I folded the top three inches down instead of cutting it, that way it can be lengthened if necessary. In addition, this adds to the general fluffiness of the skirt. Yay!

High Waisted Cheetah

Hippy Dippy

Wow. That was a while.

Ive been occasionally picking up my Regency Portrait stuff but Ive gained weight, which has caused me to spiral into depression and eat more which has caused more weight gain and so on and so forth. Ugh. Uzumaki

So Im in a place where Im barely 1/2 done with sisters tailcoat, done with moms dress, but have to restart mine {due to weight gain} and my sons {due to the little bugger GROWING CONSTANTLY GEEZ}. I should buckle down and get to work.

But I wont. Instead I am dreaming about next year. Ive got big plans, BIG Plans. Like, Marie Anoinette plan.

Oh yeah

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Dressing My Gentleman-Ssster

Fembot Nipple Darts

My Trip to Disney in 2014 is well documented in my blog. Less well documented is the dresses I wore. I only have this one here of the Honey Do Dress, a fabric covered in white Daisies, bee hives and bees, and a few of my Micky Dress, as shown below. 

The Pattern I used was Butterick 6094

Absolutely a dream to work with, super easy. I love patterns like this, with a modest neckline, but a little flair to allow one to show one's creativity.

For the back of the Honey Do dress I used a blue linen facing to compliment the centers of the daisies, and on the Mickey I used two big black buttons and a red on red mickey mouse fabric from Joanns.

Mickey Mouse Fabric By the Yard, Half, Fat Quarter Head Shadows on Red 100% Cotton Quilting Apparel Fabric BTY t6/40

Actually I was quite proud of these dresses, and they were my go-to nice dresses when going out.

Then it happened. Wearing the Honey Do dress, my Honey Bunny got a weird giggly look to his face and I immediately knew.

She feels it, she feels the pain of the nipples.

The bust darts on this thing! I sewed them so that they ended at the nipples, which, even with a sweater makes it look like Im, er... excited. You know what Im talking about. Darn french darts.

Oh lala!

Well, now that I knew about it I cant ignore it. I was so mad! So much work, such cute outfits and I couldnt wear them. I briefly entertained seamripping and attempting a less nipple-tastic bodice, but eh. I was uninspired.

It let all the Air out of me. hehe
Then it occurred to me. Its spring now, going into summer and Im really digging the separates. It wouldnt be too hard to simply cut the dresses at the waist and make skirts!

Since I dug the peeled back look of the back view I really racked my brain for a way to incorperate it into the skirt. And I got it. Exposed pockets! Boom!

So I cut off the peeled backs in square shapes, applied them to the sides of the dress-turned-skirt and BOOM.

Two new circle skirts with cute exposed pockets.


Sunday, March 6, 2016


When I first began sewing I got this idea. See, I have a surplus of fabric, a ridiculous amount of patterns and quite a stash of thread. However, I am one of the people who has a hard time sewing something if it doesn't have a purpose. So I thought, hey, Im gonna make costumes for myself and my family and do family portraits in them!

Last year I actually made the costumes, civil war era in the theme of Abraham Lincoln's anniversary thing. However, never managed to get family pictures done in them, bummer. But Still! I sewed them. This year im thinking... REGENCY

Regency Family:

Thomas Tyndall with wife and Children by Thomas Beach c.1800:

Right? Right? Anyway, Here are the ingredients:

Burda 2747

My sisters not too info the whole Princess Twirl-a-long that I am, I mean, Im almost thirty and ID dress like Disney at the drop of a hat. So, instead of the drama of forcing her to wear a dress, I offered another option. She could cross dress as a gentleman. I have the pattern, and the only other gentleman who will be in attendance is my son. So, she opted to be a gentleman. This is the first outfit Im making.

The coat will be turquoise, the trousers an antique tan cotton, and the waistcoat a truly shocking green and blue mishmash. Technically, not historically accurate although it is POSSIBLE. In my research there are some brightly clad gentleman wandering round Jane Austen's block.

Just sayin'.

BURDA 2461

WAIT A MINUTE! Why am I making this when I made the Burda version of Regency Gentleman for my son a year or so ago?

burda 9528

Lemme let ya in on a little something folks.

Kids grow


I couldn't fit Toby back in this if I had a tub of Vaseline. And, sad to say, I seem to have misplaced the pattern. So, back to Burda 2461, which I have, conveniently sitting beside me. It wont be hard at all to cut version B a little room in the front for the regency look.

I have a length of black linen-like fabric for the jacket, some suede like fabric (previously known as curtains) which will sew up nicely for the breeches, and a pale fawn cotton with white outlines of roses on it for the waistcoat, which will be made from Mccalls 4290.

Butterick 6074

This is the pattern for me and my mom,

For my mom, we're going an elegant black, Ive two different kinds of semi-sheer black fabric and a whole bunch of black cotton. Probably use bodice A with B decorations and use the spencer sleeve. I prefer long sleeves, I really do.

My dress is a thin olive green, and I am definately going to embellish the skirt with lots of fabric.

Also in the ring: Ive got the Bagatelle Regency Wardrobe. I did the crossover bodice gown once before, and it turned out well. They also have a bodiced petticoat.

Last but not least, if Im feeling adventurous, I do have the Laughing Moon 115.

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Beauty and the Me Without Caffeine

Belle's dress is iconic. It is the iconic Disney Dress of the Iconic Disney Princesses. Seriously. Anyone can see gold ruching and immediately think, BELLE. You can't help it.  So, of course, the dream of dreams for all good little Disney girls, is to have this gown.

Belles dress is my Third favorite gown. (Ariel's Pink Dress is my first and Snow whites gown my second) Although Belles is the most magical to me, I find myself bothered by the solid colors of it. I mean, I would cheat, beg and a steal to wear it and then never take it off, but well, there it is. I have other favorites.

Of course being a seamstress, I need to sew the dress. Its a thing. When most people say, "OMG I need to own the thing" we sewistas get all narrow eyed and heavy breathing with the need to MAKE THE THING.  Belle, however, has always been one of my love/hate dresses. I dislike ruching. I don't like the bustling kind of ruching, I don't like the effect it gives and I HATE hand sewing it. Because its never EVEN. UGH!
Too. Much.
But I digress. Belle's dress is a different kind of ruching, one that I can appreciate, even as I wince at the amount of TIME it will take to MAKE it. Sigh.

Anyway, I have yards and yards of gold poly satin. I mean YARDS. Different shades too, brassy gold here, dull matte candlelight colored gold here, and even bronzey gold tucked away somewhere. Ive always wanted to make belle's dress out of it. I mean, stash-busting the most AWESOME WAY, right?  However, my fear of failure kept me from cutting into that virgin cloth. The techniques t make belle's gown are just SO different from my usual style. I was too overwhelmed to try.

Recently, my niece came to visit me. She's a cutie, just four years old. It occurred to me, I could make her a mini-belle gown, stashbust and PRACTICE for my own Belle gown AT THE SAME TIME! So, I set about adventuring thtough my stash closet for fabrics.

Guys. It was so freaking easy. Jesus, making a little girls dress is SO MUCH EASIER than making an adults! It may seem obvious to you but this is a revelation to me. I even whipped up a hoop skirt with pleated ruffle in A DAY. A DAY! Normally it take me a day to PLEAT THE RUFFLE!

So, without furthur adeu, My Niece AmiaBelle.