Working on a small collection

What I’ve been working on:

Following Gertie’s tutorial, I’ve been making these felt roses over the past couple of weeks (in between working on the project below, anytime I feel I need to create something tangible). I want to make my own fascinator, like the ones she’s selling, when I have enough.

These are just a couple pages from my sketchbook. I feel a bit weird sharing all these sketches and inspiration pages, since I haven’t actually made any clothes yet, but I need to get back into blogging, and I guess sharing progress is motivating. Helps me keep track of how much I’ve done so far.

I spent a few weeks sorting through all of my inspiration folders on my computer (so many! ugh). I have about 1’900 images (some are duplicates though, say I have an image of a girl wearing a blouse and pants, I’ll put a copy of the image in each folder “blouses” and “pants”, and if there’s a special design feature, another copy in say “knots & bows”).

I’ve been trying to figure out what I want the theme of this small collection to be. Sorting through inspiration images is definitely good though, I feel like it’s a slightly frustrating (I feel like I’m not actually doing anything) but important step, and I don’t want to rush. I think the central, inspiring themes for this collection are: 1950s fashion/silhouette, insects/insect anatomy and art deco. I know at first they may seem relatively unconnected, but that’s what I’m working on figuring out :)

I got and altered some vintage dresses in may, but I don’t have photoshop to edit .RAW files at the moment, so it might be a while before I can share those unfortunately… but I made something else earlier this month (not a garment though) that I want to share later this week!

Floral Dress – the last steps

Soo, after I’ve already posted the finished dress, here are the last WIP and inner construction photos:

Finished catch-stitching the facingto the underlining:

waist seam:

Finished center-back edges:

ready for the zipper!


half-finished hand-picked zipper:

It was really worth hand-sewing! It looks much nicer than any machine-sewed zipper I ever inserted. And the stitches are pretty much invisible :)

inside views:

New techniques I learned during this project:

  • draft a fitted bodice pattern
  • how to underline (with the help of Tasia’s Tutorial)
  • how to understitch facing (again, with the help of Tasia)
  • catch-stitch facing
  • french-seams
  • gathering with 2 lines of stitching (used to only stitch 1 line and gather, it’s so much better with 2, a lot more evenly spaced)
  • properly prepping the center back seam for the zipper (cleanest back-seam edges I ever had!)
  • hand-pick a zipper

Things that could’ve turned out better:

  • back-neckline could’ve been about 2 inches deeper (but I’d rather have it too high than too deep with the bra strap showing)
  • I used blue threads to gather, thinking it would be easier to take them out that way, but I ended up not taking them out because it would’ve taken forever. So I should have used white thread. This doesn’t bother me so much though.
  • I made the waist-stay tighter than the waistline of the dress, which makes the part of the dress at the back that’s not attached to the waist stay stick out. Have to correct this (make another, looser hook on the waist stay)

But I’m happy with how the dress turned out :) And I can cross another project off my Mad Girls List!