Friday, December 28, 2012

Fabric Chosen

Well I have chosen my fabric for my dress. I ordered the light background with the blue flowers. I am going to do the waistband white as well as a hem band and a neck band. I think it will be wonderful.
Now I have to get the second bodice made for the muslin and tweak on that so I am ready for the underlining and fashion fabric.

Monday, December 17, 2012


Well, I have chosen my fabric for the couture dress I am making.  I will be using the white background, with the blue circles for the skirt, bodice, and sleeves.  Now, for the waistband I will use the white silk twill.  Also, I am going to create a small facing around the neckline out of the white for modesty and a white hem 3" band or so to complete the white accents.  I am so excited!  Susan suggested to me to use cotton batiste for the underlining to make sure that you couldn't see through the white, and my local Mary Jo's Fabric store had it.  Not cheap, but it is dreamy nice and I think it will go well with the silk twill.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

It's a polyester world! Ugh.

Well, in my search for some nice fabric for my wonerful dress, I have come to accept the very sad fact that my husband's grandmother was right when she told me, the quality of fabrics available now are terrible.  Now, if you want to sew with polyester, then you are fine. I have sewn with a lot of polyester, but when sewing for my daughters, that is the best choice ultimately for the ease in caring for the fabric.  As they slobber nutella all down the dress right before going to church, it wipes clean, then can be thrown in the washer and dryer after church with great results.  Anyway, back to my point...everything is polyester just about.  It is very difficult to find nice quality fabrics, unless you are in NYC or San Francisco, etc.  Luckily there are some great stores in NYC that have reasonable websites and swatches easily available.  But going into Joanne's and Hancock's (the main chain stores) you are surrounded with fleece and polyester.  It really is sad.  People are giving up on doing any real sewing, and I think that is why fleece is so predominate anymore.  Hancock's is a huge store, but over half of the inventory is FLEECE ??!!?  Stores stock what sells, right? The sales clerk at Hancock didn't even know silk organza existed when I asked her about it.  There is a huge, independent fabric store not far from me, but it too has a very small selection of silks.  It has a pretty good selection for wedding laces, and that will be super fun when my daughters get older, but for just nice,  high end dresses, not very much.  They too, have a lot of polyester, and a ton of cotton quilting fabric.  Oh well, back to the online stores and getting swatches.

Above are the swatches that I ordered from Mood Fabric in NYC. I was originally thinking more of a traditional floral, but can't quite find anything I love, so I am settling in on loving this blue cirlce pattern.  All the swatches are silk twill, and are lovely to hold in your hand.  The silk charmeuse swatch had less body, still nice though, than I wanted.  I want to do the waistband, a band around the hem, and a neckline facing from a solid color, while the rest of the dress is the patterned fabric.  I think I like the lighter pattern, the one with the white background, but I am worried about shadows, etc, showing through the white background.  Also I would use white to line it and white for the accent pieces mentioned above, waistband, etc.  But I want them to appear solid white, not with any kind of shadow.  I am underlining the dress with white silk organza.  I have posted a question to Susan on my sewing class to see what she says about making sure the white stands out, so we will see.  I hope she answers my question tomorrow.

First Fitting

Well, with the help from a dear friend, Marie, I have gotten my first fitting done.  My husband did what he could, but he is a manufacturing engineer of metal, not fabric.  After having Marie pin in the excess and trying out different things, we came to the conclusion to make another bodice from mulin in two sizes smaller.  Much of the problems with the bodice originally made was that it was to large, and too full.  The sleeve may have some other continuing problems, but all fitting instruction I have seen says that you should figure out the bodice first then the sleeves after that. Also, some extra fabric in the armsyce will be taken up with the sleeve.  I am a seamstress by passion, but a CPA by trade. I actually did this fitting a month ago, but with 3 tax law seminars and Thanksgiving, I haven't yet sewing together the new bodice, but hope to soon.  I am also well on my way to choosing my fashion fabric.

I just felt better after getting it pinned better.  It is frustrating because the Vogue envelope stated I would fit a 16 (12 in the real world) but  now the new bodice I am working on is a 14 in the pattern.  So, we will see what works out better.

We took in 3" in the back seam allowance

Once the back seam allowance was taken in, then the waistline was much closer to level, whereas before it was not, it sloped backward.

Fitting much nicer now with all the extra pinned up.