Jun 19, 2014

Lorraine Class - Using Panels

Every year,  Cat's Pajamas Productions puts on a fantastic vintage clothing show and sale in Elgin, IL. (www.catspajamasproductions.net).  It is held twice a year and is wonderful not only for the shopping but just for browsing and they usually put on some kind of clothing-related exhibit.  If you go to the show on Friday nights and dress in vintage they will give you $2 off on your tickets.

A couple years ago I found 2 beautiful silk pillow cases.  One I used as is on my bed and the other
I used for a project in Lorraine's class.  Our assignment was to make a garment featuring panels so I took a favorite vest pattern and was able to cut up the pillow cover and use it for the front panels of the vest. For the back of the vest I used an embroidered piece on the upper back. 


I love the vest but unfortunately the embroidery has lots of long threads and it is easy to pull them.  This will definitely be for special occasions.

Apr 26, 2014

Lorraine Torrence Creative Clothing Class 2014 - #3 Closures

For this project I used a Sandra Betzina blouse pattern, Vogue 7281, that I had made before.  The fabric came from a pair of flowing pants I bought at Maxwell Street in Madison, intending to use the fabric in them for another garment.  I was able to place the border of the print along the front edge of the blouse.

For the button loops I used some middy braid I purchased at
Gayfeather Fabrics.  I doubled the braid and tied it
in knots and used this for the button loops.

The buttons were made out of triangles of the fabric that had a layer of fleece inside and I sewed a layer of the facing fabric to the back.  I rolled then up into little croissants and then hand stitched them to the fabric.  I put a circle of heavy felt behind the button to hold it up and so that it wouldn't pull the lightweight fabric.

Close up of croissant button and loop.


Finished project.
Note:  One think I learned from sewing with metallic fabric is that it is very delicate.  I should have lined the entire blouse as it he long threads on the inside tend to catch and break.  Next time:)

Mar 18, 2014

Lorraine Torrence Creative Clothing Class 2014 - #2 Threadwork


For this project I used a Paw Prints pattern by Dana
Bontrager called Kimono Jacket and Vest.

Since this is a rather boxy
vest, I decided to add about
4" in length to the pattern
and then added width to the
sides, below the armhole, in
a wedge shape to make more
of a swing shape to the vest.

I'd like to wear this vest both ways, so I added a snap so I can wear it closed and can also
let it hang open.

Here is a closeup of the stitching I did on the neckband
using #5 Pearl Cotton and Sashiko stitching.  I got the
idea from an excellent article entitled Pocket Panache in the October/November 2013 Vogue Patterns Magazine.

The long red item on the left is a button from JoAnn Fabrics (amazing!) that I stitched on with some small black beads to cover the holes in the button.

Mar 16, 2014

What Are You Sewing?

Vogue Patterns magazine (one of my favorites along with Threads) has a monthly feature entitled What Are You Sewing?  They ask their readers to send in a photo and explanation of a favorite project as an inspiration to other sewers.  I decided to send them a photo of the coat I made from a Vogue pattern (#7663) by Marcy Tilton and it showed up in the April/May 2014 issue.  You can read about my project below. And  THANK YOU Vogue Patterns for awarding me a one-year subscription to your fabulous magazine!


Feb 11, 2014

Lorraine Torrence Creative Clothing Class 2014 - #1 Repurposed Ready-to-Wear

I signed up for Lorraine's Creative Clothing Class at Gayfeather Fabrics again this year, as did most of my classmates from last year.  The first  assignment was to repurpose a piece of ready-to-wear.  My project for this go around was a long, black silk Dana Buchman vest I found at a consignment store for $20.  I decided to use some of the beautiful pieces of handprinted silk scraps that I had bought from Laura Goldstein, who has a business in Milwaukee called Grotta & Co.  She makes the most fabulous scarves and pillows from her fabrics (www.grottaco.com). 


I first fused the silk pieces onto some fusi-knit interfacing and then sewed the pieces into strips which I basted onto the hem of the vest.  Then I used some black and white ribbon I got at Gayfeather Fabrics and topstitched it onto the top and bottom edges of the strip to finish it off.

Using a grasshopper motif from one of the silk scraps, I made a patchwork square which I stitched on the upper back to add interest.

I had planned to change the button that came with the vest but decided the large mother-of-pearl button was perfect. 

Oct 15, 2013

Tziporah Comes to the Midwest

I recently spent a fascinating afternoon with style icon and artist Tziporah Salamon, watching her compose the most incredible outfits out of her stash of vintage clothing, scarves and accessories, interwoven with life tales and experiences.  I'm inspired!

 "I’m not fashionable at all; I’m stylish.
 Fashionable is of the moment.
Fashionable is the latest Prada, Gucci, or whatever is “in” this minute,
and I rarely have what’s in-the-moment."
Please check out her website www.tziporahsalamon.com

Sep 15, 2013

Madison Museum of Contemporary Art Gallery Night


Join East Side Bags for a
trunk show for Gallery Night
Friday, October 4, 2013, 5-9 pm
  Saturday from 10-2 pm
at the MMOCA Museum Store
227 State Street, Madison, WI