Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Gala Gown: The Unveiling

Here she is!

My “Ginger Rogers as Cinderella at the ball” gown.

The weather was perfect, the music was beautiful, and the party was fabulous!  And you really cannot ask for anything more than that.

But, on another note, I do have to admit that I am delighted to have completed this project - finally!  

The process was incredible, but there sure is a sense of relief and accomplishment to be finished.  Not to mention the fact that I can start on a new project!  

And you better believe that it is going to be something simple and basic that will not take a month to complete!

Dress & Capelet:  Made by me, Butterick 6408
Shoes:  BP
Earrings:  Kate Spade
Rings:  Grandmother’s engagement ring and Grandfather’s wedding ring
Bracelet:  Judith Jack

Monday, October 29, 2012

Gala Gown: Getting Ready

Somehow time always manages to get away from me.  I was still fiddling with hair pieces Sunday morning.  Which make it rather difficult to paint one's nails!

And I forgot to replace the batteries in the camera which took time away from picture taking to run back to the apartment.  Silly, flighty girl!

I am in the process of going through the photos, and I promise I will get pictures of the finished gown posted soon.

It was a busy month of sewing and beading, but in the end it was worth it.  Thank you for sharing this journey with me!

By the way . . . it was a truly fantastic evening!

Gala Gown: Finishing Up!

My mom and I spent a few hours on Saturday working on the hem.  On went the dress, in went the pins, off came the dress, off came the extra fabric, and back on went the dress . . .

Here is what was cut off.  In some places I removed six and a half inches, and in one scary spot, I only removed half an inch.  Crazy bias!

I decided to go with a rolled hem for a couple of reasons.  First off, the flare of the skirt is so extreme, that a hem with over an inch of fold was going to require a ton of steam to shrink down all the excess.  And that probably would have required at least one more try one and marking step with mom.  

This way, I just cut an inch down from floor length, ran a machine stitch along the edge for reference, and sewed a rolled hem.   All that hand sewing is actually relaxing for me at this point.

The beaded hair pieces (which will help keep the hood in place) needed a few finishing touches.

Finally, the skirt required a press after all the handling, and was then hung on the back of the sewing room door to wait for her debut.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Gala Gown: The Clutch

Thank you to everyone who shared their suggestions about how to tone down the bright gold purse frame that I purchased.

With so many Rub 'n Buff suggestions, I decided I would have to try it!  I ended up spraying a layer of clear coat over the top just to make sure nothing rubs off on my dress!

McCalls 4936 was used as a base pattern.  I eliminated the straps and flap.  Instead of gathering the excess, I pleated the fabric.  Center was marked and I guessed that 2” out from center in both directions might work.  And it did – perfectly!

To make sure the purse was going to fit the frame, I made a muslin and used some helpful closespins to help visualize how the finished accessory might look.

The pattern has two side gusset pieces which are finished off before the front and back and sit a little lower which is absolutely perfect for a purse frame.

Turns out I did not have any heavy duty fusible interfacing in the stash.  And there was no way I had time to make another trip to the fabric store.  So, I made do with Steam a Seam and some non-fusible.  

I am glad I went ahead with the thicker interfacing – the shape of the clutch looks much more interesting and does not collapse on itself.

So the clutch and the capelet are finished - just one more important piece of the puzzle to go!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Vintage Reproductions for the Holidays

The new Vogue Winter/Holiday patterns are out.  And there are three new vintage reproductions - just what I need to distract me from finishing my gown!  Why is it that all those little pesky but necessary things like hook & eyes take so much longer than expected?!

Vogue 8868

I am very excited that Vogue is bringing back the vintage hats.  Unfortunately, this particular pattern looks like more of a fascinator than hat, but hopefully next season they will include more vintage hats!

Vogue 8850

And the drape on this dress promises to be a whole lot of fun.  I am not sure about those shoes the stylist put on the model, but I will reign in the snarky comments because I really do appreciate the effort that Vogue is putting into the recent Vintage Vogue photo shoots.

Vogue 8851

I will keep wishing and hoping for more complicated and fabulous vintage Special Edition Vogues, but until then, these classic silhouettes will just have to do!

Vogue 8853

And it may just be the polka dot print, but I think I love this blouse.  Or does it look too 1990s poet blouse?  Would it look good tucked into a pencil skirt?  I am not quite sure at this point . . . I am too distracted by the fabulous dots!

Vogue 8858

This skirt is rather fetching.  It does require a fabulous fabric, so I will have to keep my eyes open.  Or perhaps I should just work with what I have for the moment!

Which are your favorites - the old fashioned, or the super modern?

Gala Gown: Froggie Saves the Day

My capelet needed a closure of some kind.  A button and loop did not look quite right to me.  So off to JoAnn Fabrics I went, hoping for the best.  They did have a few decorative hooks and eye closures, but they looked cheap or were not the correct color.

I found something that I could live with on the notions aisle (not sure what it was doing there when all of the others were with the buttons).  And behold, there in the notion aisle were two frog closures, in silver and gold.  Unfortunately, the gold was too bright.  But it got me to thinking  . . . how difficult can it be to make my own?

And after being called out for being a lazy girl by Peter over my purchased beads, I thought it was time to step up.

One quick google search later, and I found this lovely tutorial from Bridges on the Body.  After a quick test run with some yarn, I made some bias tubing with my leftover fabric.  

My tubing is probably a little too thick, and the frogs are not perfect, but they are an infinitely better match than anything I was going to find on such short notice.

Thank you big box sewing store for a wonderful idea (but not for your cheap notions)!

Have you ever found inspiration in an unexpected place?  

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

My Kind of Hoodie

I thought I would share a hoodie or two from 1948.  They are infinitely more chic than any contemporary hooded outerwear I have ever seen.

There is even a dress with a removable hood, and it is plaid!  It really doesn’t get any better than that, does it?

Rain or evening appropriate . . .

Short  . . . 

Or long . . .

They all look so sophisticated!

[Images from 1948 Sears Roebuck Catalog]