Friday, April 8, 2011
An un-stylish blogger writes about Vogue 8333
I didn't intend to take a photo of today's outfit, as it was one that I threw together with no intention of looking stylish or put-together. Purely randomly chosen things. And I ended up being perversely happy with it. You know a day where you have a contrary, grumpy, don't-give-a-toss attitude to how you look... and end up feeling sassily funky and pleased with your unglamorous, even weird ensemble. All these items I threw on today are individually items I have felt ambivalent with lately. I didn't care what I looked like as I was contemplating a day at home, office-ing, and a little bit of muslin-ing. Yes, people, I am getting along with my muslin of Vogue 8333 and it is proving a doozy. Not in a good way. I've read before about the dangers of OD-ing on your pattern during the muslin stage, and I am in near danger of doing just this... I have nearly finished my muslin, on which I am trying out all the couture techniques explained within that are new to me, and then I will take a short break before starting on my "real" jacket. A short break during which I will do some quick-fix fun stuff, instant gratification stuff. Vogue 8333 is emphatically NOT an instant gratification project.
Shirt; Burda 8497, white cotton, details here
Skirt; Vogue 7303, green velveteen, details here
Tights; my own design, details here
Thongs; Mountain Designs
Thank you so much Donna, for giving me this award!
Now, I'm to write 7 things, supposedly about myself, but instead for something different I'm going to write about 7 of the couture techniques I've learnt doing the muslin for Vogue 8333, which I expect will be a lot more interesting.
1. Bridles. You could be forgiven for thinking Vogue have inadvertently branched out into horse-riding advice, but no, this is still within the realms of dress-making. The bridles are a pieces of tape hand-stitched onto the roll line of the lapels in couture jacket construction; to both stabilise the fold and also help create a soft fold. Giddy-up!
2. Pad-stitching. Is where you do long lines of running stitches laid out in a grid, or a cross-hatching arrangement. The result is fabric that is a bit stiffer, like it's been quilted. Well, padded. Thus the name, Methinks. When one does this to thick wool fabric with some body one can hide the pad-stitches within the fabric somewhat, making them almost invisible. When one is trialling pad-stitching on a calico muslin like I did, it looks.... kind of ridiculous. I don't care. I will wear my silly looking pad-stitched muslin with pride whence it is done, you'll see.
3. Taming, (the seam allowances). If you think that sounds a wee bit kinky, well, in the immortal words of... somebody, the best is yet to come. Taming the seam allowances within a corner involves folding the two edges of the corner down firmly and closely to each other, pressing into submission and hand-stitching down. One does not, I repeat, NOT trim triangles away from the corners to remove bulk. Oh yes, I tell you, we are throwing old ideas out the window in wild abandon with this project, die-hard corner trimmers.... NOT SO FAST with those scissors!
4. Spanking the corner; ooh, yes, I kid you not, fellow seamstresses. And you thought sewing was for squares, dried up earnest individuals with no excitement in their lives... well, little did we know about all that "spanking" going on in those couture workrooms! The Vogue 8333 instructions recommended something called a "clapper", not owning one of these intriguing sounding tools I used a wooden spatula instead.
5. Fell-stitching. Well. Having not done fell-stitching before I googled it and found a little tutorial. And discovered that I had been fell-stitching, like, only all my life, believing myself to be slip-stitching. Who knew? A subtle little distinction...
6. Hand-finished buttonholes. Hold your horses, before one steamrolls ahead and starts hand-stitching one's buttonholes, the instructions specify to first wax, and then press the thread. Yes, press the thread. Another first. Has anyone else out there, and I mean anyone, ever ever pressed their thread before? Hmmm? Been using un-pressed thread for your buttonholes? Faaail...
7. Not necessarily a couture technique, but the instructions recommended that once the collar is turned out, and if you are not ready to sew it to the neckline, in order to keep the roll-line nicely folded and in order pin it to a tailor's ham and set aside. I couldn't resist giving it a little face...
Now to give the award to 7 other stylish bloggers, (and please, there is no obligation whatsoever to do this... if you hate blogger awards then feel free to ignore this and don't hate me)
Darci, of Darcidoodle-do
Liza Jane, of lizajanesews
Steph, of 3 Hours Past the Edge of the World
Magda, of magdamagda design studio
Patty, of the snug bug
Bernice; of Raindrops and Bellyflops
Denise, of dame design studio