Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Time to Vote: Signature Looks!

We can't believe it, but the final week of Project Sewn Season 1 is here...and it is time to vote!  All of the ladies this season have worked so hard and produced such spectacular looks---and this week is where they are showcasing their personal design styles.  Thanks to each one of them for a fantastic first season!!! Remember that voting is one vote per computer (IP address) and good luck to all!  We will be announcing the winners of each of the prize packages on Friday morning!

Four Square Walls--Stripe Hype
 
A dress! It had to be a dress. It's a rare day when you find me wearing jeans, and if I am, I'm probably complaining about it. I'm not a frilly dresser, though, so I try to keep my look casual and subdued while still being feminine and interesting. This pinstriped black & white chambray fabric would make a handsome men's shirt, but I wanted to play with the placement of the stripes and make a fit-and-flare women's dress that I could wear for various occasions and, most importantly, pair with different color belts. I'm always belted up. Yesterday I wore my new dress with sandals to have a picnic in the park and I thought it was perfect. Of course, everyone else in the park was wearing athletic spandex and tennis shoes but that's my style story: always slightly overdressed and yet never really caring.
I started with Vogue 8665 because I liked the princess seams and cap sleeves. I lowered the front neckline a bit so I wouldn't choke, and cut the side front and side back on the bias. The pattern extends all the way down into a flared skirt, but I cut my pieces at the waistline and added my own quarter-ish circle skirt. For more stripey fun, I added a 3" band of horizontal stripes at the hem. It gives the skirt some structure and weight. The only matching zipper I had wasn't long enough to reach from the back of the neckline to the widest part of the hip, so I just lowered the neckline in the back a few inches. It's a regular zipper but I hand-picked it so the stitches are basically invisible. I finished the neckline and armholes with bias tape. Red bias tape, because I could.
See more photos on four square walls. Thanks everyone!
 
The Sewing Rabbit--Sentimental Liberty
 
This week's Signature Look is rather sentimental for me. You see, the whole reason I accepted the challenge of Project Sewn was because I wanted it to push me. As a children's apparel designer and seamstress, I rarely sew for myself. I always considered it to be too challenging, all of the different curves and shapes we as women have - they are much different then the typical children's box shape patterns. It wasn't until recently that I had really started dabbling in sewing for myself, and enjoying the results. So when Liz & Elizabeth asked me to be in Season One, I accepted with nervous trepidation. For personal reasons, I chose to sew the Simplicity Lisette 2246 Pattern. I remember seeing it about 6 months back when a friend of mine had sewn it and thinking - 'Wow, she is so talented. I could never do that'. I could, and I would. Taking it a step further I used some Liberty of London fabric that my husband brought back for me from a work trip to England, which had been sitting on a shelf ever since because I was too scared to cut into it. I wanted to prove to myself that I could do it, and do it well. My ultimate Project Sewn challenge.


1 Meter. That was all I had to make this dress work.  I altered the pattern by extending the front of the dress to include all of the gorgeous pintuck pleating. I liked the idea of keeping the pleats open at the neckline, it gives it a more carefree look. I also shortened the sleeves and included a fun upwards fold with button closure.  The belt is a simple satin ribbon that lends itself to the femininity of the dress, which I love.  With fabric this gorgeous, I wanted to create a dress that had simple finishing details to really show off its beauty.



I have been so honored to be here on Project Sewn and to have been able to sew along with these incredible ladies. It has pushed me into a whole new direction with my sewing, and I am so very thankful to all who encouraged me along the way. Project Sewn has shown me that I can sew women's clothes, and sew them well, which has blessed me in a way unlike anything else. Thank you to all who voted for me to be here. For more photos and all of the detail, you can visit the blog here.  
 

Cirque du Bebe-- A Chevron Kind of Love
When it comes to personal style, I'm no guru but I know what I like. I'm inspired by color, deeply committed to prints and geometric patterns and love surprising textures together. And if it were possible to sew all these style loves together then I'd have my dream outfit! And that's how it came together, piece by piece. I had the idea for this woven chevron skirt pre-Project Sewn but no clues on how to actually make it. The fabric is a hand-loomed cotton, which without being able to feel it, is a thick and woven, gnarly sort of texture, probably made for home dec and not minis. I literally had the weeniest remnant of 45" x  24" to play with (there are no real scraps left) and make a four-pieced skirt, join the panels into a chevron at the front and an exposed metal zip down the back. I drafted the pattern based off a skirt of mine, added darts at the back, a silk lining and blanket stitched the hem with a contrast thread. Lining up stripes is not something I've had much experience with, let alone lining them up on fabric 2/8" thick! It was totally wayward and had to be reined in from every angle.  I interfaced the panels to stop it fraying, stabilized the centre front with cotton tape and sewed all the seams flat against the fabric since the iron was basically useless!
 
Not sure who's idea it was to attempt a fully lined, welt-pocketed silk blazer in less than a week. It's the sort of thing you sew slowly, calmly and over a month isn't it? I knew it was crazy but I had this vision of a dreamy geometric silk blazer paired with a rough woven skirt. I couldn't let it go! Granted, it's an unlikely combination of fabrics and when I tried to explain it to a few during the week it was met with raised eye-brows. But there's something yummy about those colors together and the contrast of smooth silk next to something rough and textured. I started with this pattern from Ralf Pink for a casual style jacket which hangs loose at the front without buttons. For the lining I used a chartreuse crepe de chine and color-blocked the two-pieced sleeves with the same fabric. Faux welt pockets were fine by me, the welt is real, but I was thanking Ralf for the lack of pocket bag by that stage. Well, this week was sewing drama at it's best...hoorays, tears, pizza for breakfast and too many 'what the?' moments to remember. I'm so happy and relieved to have a complete outfit to put up at the end and one that is me all over!
 
More details and outfit pics on my blog.

17 comments:

  1. Love.them.all. very nicely done, ladies!!!

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  2. aaaarggggg seriously ???? How do I do to choose ??????

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  3. OMG that was so difficult! I seriously took like 20 minutes to vote. Whew!

    Ok, so when does 'season 2' start?!? I enjoyed this! :)

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  4. Wow! I love them all too! Loved all the challenges too!

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  5. Wow, really amazing!! This 'season 1' was so much fun, so many nice outfits! Very inspirational. It's hard to vote this week, since I feel everyone succeed in creating an outfit true to their own style. Well done ladies!

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  6. That was nearly impossible. I know next time not to read the stories and vote first, because that totally threw me and wanted to say: "you go girl!" to all of them

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  7. This week I loved all the looks!

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  8. Seriously, EVERYONE wins!! E v e r y o n e ! ! ! !

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  9. they are all amazing! beautiful sewing!!!

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  10. They should all win, each one is an amazing outfit!

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  11. I have to go with The Sewing Rabbit, the dress and the person is very pretty, her pictures on the beach really brings out the colors of the dress.

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  12. Just soo lovely and inspiring, great job ladies!

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  13. All three are amazing, but I'm blown away by 4SqWalls' incredible stripe matching. That's a much a design feature as the pattern itself!

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  14. SO impressed by everybody's sewing skills. Thanks for bringing this group together.

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