Sewing and lifestyle blog of a wannabe "full-time vixen"

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Drape, drape, and away!

Still got one more class left in my draping night class. I am going to be really glad when it is over because I believe I am more of a pattern drafter than a draper. The last two classes have been frustrating while working on the skirt portion. So frustrating that I didn’t take photos of it! I blame the shoddy mannequins we have to use and perhaps the mannequins aren’t suited to the directions given to us by our instructor. I think there was really only one girl in the class who could get it right without too many problems…and she had a different type of mannequin. Whatever. I did my best.

Then we moved onto draping a cowl and that was so much fun! Made me feel a lot better about draping. It was more creative as we only had to follow a few general guidelines to ensure a proper cowl was draped but other than that we had free reign to drape however we wanted. Now for a photobomb! The cowl first and then my finished basic bodice drape.

I did these horizontal pleats instead of darts to use up the excess…I’m very obsessed with these kinds of pleats right now! Can’t wait to do this on a skirt and have them all pressed nice and flat.

1940’s Glam Hair

I took some photos of what my curls looked the day after…I think they’re still very lovely after being slept on! I don’t bother to put them back in curlers for the day after, mostly out of laziness, but also out of curiosity as to what the curls will look like.

This is what I wore to work on Friday. As you can see below, the blouse is see through so I wore it with a cardigan for modesty’s sake while at work.

I’m very happy with these curls! It was the first time I used sponge rollers and I absolutely love them for their ease of use and amount of curl I can attain. Pin curls are fun but a pain in the butt for me to do. Ever since I started experimenting with curling my hair vintage, I’ve realized I lean towards the 40s style of hair. It’s just so glamourous and elegant, especially with my hair getting longer like this. I also adore Victory Rolls although I haven’t done them in a while.

My next goals are to keep practicing how to style the curls, especially brushing them out and taming the frizz.

I also had another realization…curling my hair and taking photos like this is time consuming. To the point where sometimes I feel like I wasting my time! I realized that I only enjoy doing this once in a while and am not really the type of girl who will “do vintage” everyday like some other lovely ladies in the blogosphere. I am totally happy with just doing “vintage-esque” things with my hair and I also realized I prefer having straight hair (thank goodness it’s my natural hair type)! At least it’s getting longer and I’m really enjoying growing it out currently. Can’t wait to do things like braids and buns on top of my head.

I think I came across this realization after finishing reading The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin — “Just because something is fun for other people doesn’t mean it’s fun for me. (and vice versa)” I was inspired to try doing my hair in vintage style after seeing all these blogs of girls who do it around the world and all the tutorials on youtube. I’m happy that I’ve experimented with it and I’m happy to have found a method that I like and is easy for me to do. It might not be true, 100% authentic vintage but I am totally fine with that.

Stay tuned for more hair experiments. My co-worker Vicky went on trip to East Asia recently and came back with a funny Japanese hair curling product called “Goo Set”. I have to find some time to try this out and show everyone!

Outfit details:
cardigan, blouse – Urban Behaviour
belt – Forever 21
skirt – my grandmother!

Resurrecting this blog from the grave…with draping!

I haven’t posted in this blog since the very end of August! So that’s 8 months! 8 months! A lot of things have gone on in my life since then. Some months were very overwhelming, December and January come to mind because of the passing of a beloved and very close family member. Work and night school has also been distracting.

But I really want to start this up again and keep it simple – one post per week. That’s it. I’m not here to be an internet star but I’m here to keep my curious friends and family up-to-date on what I do in the sewing (and now knitting!) part of my life.

I’m going to begin with a post on what I’m doing in my current class which is a fashion draping class! Here, I’ll just show you. We start off with a large piece of fabric, do a few easy preparatory steps like ironing down the selvedge one inch…

Then drape it on our mannequin or dress form!

I am draping the front of a very basic bodice with one bust dart. You start with the basic patterns to build slopers or blocks that you can then design from for all other designs. Basically, you want to get a basic pattern that will fit YOU, and then you can add pleats or peplums without worrying too much about the basic fit.

In the previous photo, I had not yet formed the bust dart. In the photo below, I have pinned it! Isn’t it a lovely dart?

Now we are going to add ease around the armhole. I have marked the original sideseam but we make a mark half an inch towards the back, redraw the sideseam and repin it. Now you can see there is some space around the armhole!

I am having quite a lot of fun in this class. I have never draped before! This is all very new to me, at least the very action of manipulating fabric on a mannequin or dress form. In the sewing profession, we will call mannequins dress forms because the two serve different functions for us. You would put clothes on mannequins and then use them in displays. But you would use a dress form to actually help sew clothes and dress forms are more complex and generally built better. However, in this class we’re actually using mannequins as real dress forms are too expensive for the program. We had to prepare the mannequins with a ton of draping tape (all those lines you see!) to establish where the waist, hips, shoulders, etc, are. A draping dress form would have many of these significant design lines established already and you would just have to add a few more. Also our mannequins are very, very imperfect (mine doesn’t even have a stand!) and not symmetrical. I know humans actually aren’t symmetrical either but putting on the draping tape was a bit of a challenge.

I hope I do well in the class, so far I am! I am finding this quite easy, probably because I have pattern drafting experience. We will be doing cowls, ruching, shirring, and pleating later on. Woohoo!

P.S. If you thought this blog post would be about Mad Men’s Don Draper…well you’re awesome.

Another hiatus

Sorry friends that I have not been blogging much. My reasons are:

1) Moving to a new place in the last month and still settling in, my sewing things had actually been packed for about a week to get ready for the move and then stayed packed for another week during the process of unpacking!

2) Things happening at work and possibly working too much! :S But the money is much needed so alas, I work my butt off.

3) More things happening in my personal life which I won’t bother divulging on this blog.

Do not worry friends, I am in the process of finishing one skirt and in the middle of sewing another. And I still need to take photos of the school project I finished oh so long ago!

I have a lot of summer sewing plans which consist of:
Pendrell blouse and Sorbetto top (both of which many variations can be made!)
Violet blouse and Ginger skirts
scalloped waistband skirt
– dresses! of all kinds, made of knit or woven fabrics
– a fancy dress to wear to my aunt’s wedding in September
– shorts

And probably many more aspirations but the above are what I am focusing on because it will keep me busy enough as you can see!

Progress report on a shirt and skirt

Life is chugging along and I’m trying to keep up. Sewing projects are coming along, take a look.

Shirt is hemmed! Facings tacked and topstitched. The only things left are the cuffs on the sleeves and buttonholes and buttons. I have a week left to do this which should be more than enough time. I hope the cuffs turn out okay, for some reason, the cuffs are smaller than they should be…or the sleeve circumference is larger. Otherwise, I’ll just have to figure out how to “make it work!”

Check out this half finished crescent skirt! It isn’t pressed yet and there’s a lot more sewing to be done on the facing and zipper.

I love the pockets on this! Damn this skirt is turning out to be adorable. Cannot wait to wear it!!!

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