Nov 19, 2014

Art at the Depot

 Art at the Depot
Saturday December 6th
931 E. Main St., Madison, WI
10 - 5 pm

Nov 10, 2014

Winter Art Fair on the Square

Working on something new for the Winter Art Fair off the Square, this coming weekend, November 15-16 at Monona Terrace in Madison, WI.

Observant eyes may recognize the scarf on the left.  Hated to waste any of this gorgeous silk print!

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:)

Lorraine Torrence Creative Clothing Class 2014 - #4 Using 5 Fabrics in a Garment

I have a wonderful silk print that I have coveted for years - too afraid to cut it up in case I screwed up the resulting garment.  It features a grouping of Asian people and I have been pondering for years what to do with it.  The assignment for our class prompted me to think of using it as I also had a few yards of another orange silk flowered print that worked with it - now to find 3 others!  I had an orange corded silk in my stash that worked and after digging through my kimono pieces stash I found 2 more green shibori pieces that worked.

The pattern I chose had an Asian feel to it, as do so many of my garments - it was one of Lorraine Torrence's patterns, Grainline Gear Crossroads Jacket. 

I remembered reading an article in one of Sandra Betzina's books about making a silk jacket.  It involved backing each piece with a matching piece of flannelette that was fused with interfacing.  The flannelette gave body to the fabric while the interfacing gave it abit more, without being directly fused onto the silk.  I hand basted each piece (exhausting!!) with the 3 layers before sewing them together and then lined the piece in more of the orange silk.

Thee garment needed closures of some sort and I had purchased some buttons at a flea market in Madison that were just perfect - men's heads in a scale that matched the print to perfection.  I used a covered snap as a closure underneath and then sewed the buttons onto the front band as decoration.  So glad I waited for the perfect garment and the silk feels wonderful when I wear it!

Jun 19, 2014

Lorraine Torrence Creative Clothing Class 2014 - #5 Using Panels

Every year,  Cat's Pajamas Productions puts on a fantastic vintage clothing show and sale in Elgin, IL. (  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.

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!