1950s Turquoise Slim Dress

This dress was originally planed to be one of two options for my friends wedding mid July, but as you might expect – it wasn’t finished by then (so I wore a different dress instead).
(who knew you would get so little time for sewing whit a newborn in your lap…)

IMG_0150The pattern is an original I won at an online auction about a year ago.

The fabric is 1,5 m of soft Viscose in a lovely turquoise, I had in my stash, from which I barely managed to irk all the pattern pieces from.IMG_0152

Unfortunately I didn’t take any in progress photos, but the construction was really simple – basically a darted slim skirt sewn to a slightly larger/ lose T-shirt bodice. No zipper or clouser, just interfacing to the neckline and bust darts. A quick hemming and it was done (probably took me less then 4 hours, all and all).

Simple as it was, I did however made two pretty classic mistakes.
1. When enlarging the pattern for the bodice I added a bit to much center front/back which made the neckline to wide. It doesn’t show but it feels when worn.
2. I didn’t took the time to go into town to get more interfacing, but used what I had, which of course was way to stiff for the soft fabric, thous making the neckline facings to hard and adding to the weird look/feel of the neckline.

IMG_9971It does not look like much on the hanger…

  The finished dressIMG_0153

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The PhotoshootIMG_0745

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IMG_0842Photo by: Maria Petersson

The facts:

What: A 1950s summer dress

Pattern: Simplicity 2963

Fabric & Notions: 1,5 m turquoise viscose, Thread and pieces of interfacing for the neck-facings.

Time & cost: about 100 Sek (16 Usd) and less then 4 hours (although I worked on it in 10 minute portions for 3 weeks, so it’s hard to tell exactly).

Final Thoughts: I do love the idea of this dress, but sadly I’m not a fan o it in real life. The lose bodice make my upper body look huge and the slim skirt only enhances that feeling. On a slimmer person, or at least someone with hm.. les bobbage (Did I mention I’m currently breastfeeding…) it would probably look great. But I don’t think I will ever wear it again.

Wedding with friends

A week ago my dear friend Linda, from high school got married to the man she’s been dating since before I knew her.

It was a lovely wedding, held outside at a beautiful location, on he most perfect of summer days. IMG_0037The bridal party approaching the guest and waiting groom.

13769600_10155062431904517_5713467184305011177_nMe, my fiance and child right before the ceremony. 
Photo: curtesy of my friend Isa Gillman

IMG_0070“You might now kiss the bride”

IMG_0057My friends Isa and Emma (with her newborn baby girl) from high school.

IMG_0060And our boys…

IMG_0118Charlie and dad both sported the bow-tie.

IMG_0083The little flower girl eagerly assisted with he pacifier. 

IMG_0098Lovely photo of a lovely bride.

IMG_0104The bridal waltz – look at that beautiful lace and beaded dress back.

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IMG_0116The bride and her ever growing son.

IMG_0076The location was so perfect for an outdoors summer wedding, with a 19th century mansion, a great yard and even a little pond and gazebo on the backyard – I might just need to get the owners number…

IMG_0137The wedding-dress in all its glittery, tulle glory.

IMG_0124All my girls together.

IMG_0130Me and the bride doing silly faces.

IMG_0142Pro camera-GroupSelfie (I’ts really hard actually, twisting your arm that way)

IMG_0145My two tired boys at the end of the day.

And my dress…

I did plan to make myself a new nursing-dress, (from the Regency round gown pattern) but ran out of time (due to a clinging, ever nursing newborn in my arms 24/7), and I decided to do the next best thing – order a dress online.

With only a week left to the wedding, I put all my eggs in one basket and ordered this pregnancy/nursing dress in Azure blue, just hopping that the color/size/style would fit me.jolene_seaside_3_redigeratAnd it did.20160723_225236_resizedI felt very pretty (and comfortable) in the colorful jersey dress. Phew.

Experimenting with (modern) baby clothes

As I stated way back in January, this year will be filled with jersey and snaps (in stead of ball gowns and corsets).

I promise I won’t bore you with it all, but for this one post, showing my first batch of baby clothes for my newborn child.

Lets just start by stating that – Buying nice baby fabric is hard!
Especially if you don’t want “blue cars” or “pink princesses”, but still would like some color in your kids wardrobe.
Although I live how a small amount of fabric (like 1 m) basically gives you a whole set of clothes, including body, pants, romper and hat.

After some frustration in the beginning, I did find some nice fabrics in a “not to obvious gender specific” print/color.
IMG_9712Some of the sourced fabrics. Aren’t they cute 🙂

Alongside the fabrics I also bought a few basic patterns, which I would use as a base and the alter for size and style as I grew more comfortable working with stretch fabric and baby sizing.IMG_9745Bodice taken in to make for a smaller size.

Al of these pieces are first tries at the pattern, so a lot of strange sizing is going on which I will have to fix until next time. I find it really strange how different pattern company’s make a standard baby size 56 in totally different size/proportions.

Anyway – this is what I’ve made (so far)

A simple hatIMG_9737

3 bodys (using 2 different patterns)IMG_9830

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2 rompers (and a third one on its way)IMG_9833

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3 pair of pants20160714_103251_resized

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Speaking of different proportions to the same size…
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And a jacket/sweatshirtIMG_9732IMG_9735

And here are proof that, at least one (so far) of the pieces, fits my baby boy.20160713_155916_resizedHe is 5 weeks by now (OMG!)

It’s so fast and rewarding to make these clothes.
I mean one body in an hour, and pants and hats even less, how could that not be fun.

My (everyday) pregnancy style

As we all know, being pregnant do some things to your body (and mind).
Things that makes your morning routine take some extra time, and I’m not talking about morning sickness or the constant trips to the toilet – I’m talking of the head scratching process of dressing.

In the beginning (at least for me, I know everyone have it differently) you just feel bloated, unattractive and with a greenish tint to your complexion. Though wearing your normal clothes still works, if only a bit snug, some people prefer to wear cute little dresses with a bow tied on top. This was not an option for me, since we decided to wait quite some time before announcing to anyone that I was expecting.
So usual clothes it was – Even though I didn’t choose the most figure hugging tops in my wardrobe, (and thanks to Swedish autumn and winter just around the corner I could easily hide in bulky knits and cosy sweatshirts.

I was lucky enough to be able to wear my winter jacket the whole winter (it was a close one though, had spring hesitated a week more I would have been forced to get another one).

When spring arrived and my belly started to show for real, I bought a pair of pregnancy pants from a known two lettered fashion store, and kept wearing my usual tops and shirts. Everything with enough stretch in them would work. I also frequently used a pair of soft lose pants tied under the bump.
After a while I needed to add a long tank-top beneath my regular tops as my expanding belly made them look shorter and shorter.IMG_9754Comfortable loose pants, slim dress worn as a top and white belt.
pregnant in: week 39*

IMG_20160510_133456_resizedThere is no way that sweater will close…
week 37

In May my belly was really growing fast and I could literally see the changes each morning. I got myself a new pair of maternity jeans (the old pair was quite worn out by this time), and even splurged on a pair of denim shorts. 20160509_081328_resized_1Summer style – also, notice the sensible walking shoes
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I did attend a few parties during the spring, and in the beginning had some trouble finding a nice dress to wear.
I bought a lavender blue pregnancy dress in January for these occasions, but when time come to put it on, it never felt right. In stead I raided my own closet, and found several dresses that would work.2016-03-14_20.03.36_resizedThe maternity dress I never liked.  
I did wear it though – for my birthday celebration in week 39 – the day before delivery.
week 30

IMG_9766A printed A-line dress I wore to several parties and occasions both during and before pregnancy.
week 39

IMG_9771A green form fitting jersey dress, I’ve never had the courage to wear before, but with a bump this big I figured no one would notice my other “bumps” and “humps”…
week 39 (two days before delivery)

Although not as much as I initially planed, I did work out some during my pregnancy. And when it came to clothes for bicycling, power walks and weight lifting I just used my regular fitness clothes – Pants worn beneath the belly, long stretch tops and jackets/west worn open.
IMG_20160305_110924_resizedweek 27

image000002_resizedweek 38

In the end my favorite clothes during my pregnancy was a slim black dress, a long tank top and a printed kimono/caftan, all worn with a narrow belt beneath the bust – non of which was new or made for a pregnant body.
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Slim black dress accessorized with belt, huge jewelry and gold bag.
week 30

IMG_0109_resizedAt my “goodby-party” at work, wearing flowery kimono, tank top and shorts.
week 38

IMG_20160515_194543_resizedweek 37

*In Sweden we count pregnancy in 40 weeks (with 40 full weeks as the calculated day of birth, and full term at 38-42 weeks).
I had my baby at 39 weeks and 2 days.

Plastic Fantastic Purple Flower – Photoshoot

Even though I could’t attend the ” Plastique Fantastique” event last weekend, I still took the time to dress up for a  photoshoot.

I’m wearing my new Plastic purple flower dress, pair with a purple synthetic wig, high stockings, black Kensington shoes accessorized with fan gloves, jewelry and feathers. Underneath I wear my old 18th century corset, short bloomers and pocket hoops.

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IMG_5170Doll Antoinette

IMG_5212Photo: Elin Evaldsdottra

Plastique Fantastique – inspiration

This spring, some of the most awesome historical nerds I knew posted an event on Facebook called:

Plastique Fantastique!

And described it as a meetup/picnic for everyone who’s tired of the whole “Historical accurate” discussion:
“Trött och ängslig att du inte är HK? Har du innerst inne närt en dröm om att bära den där fantastiska Marie Antoinetteskapelsen i vit glansig nylon? Nu kan du kasta korsett och siden! Klä dig i polyester och kardborrband!
Välkomna till Plastique Fantastique!”
(“Tired of worrying about Historical accuracy? Do you dream about that awesome Marie Antoinette gown in shining polyester? Lets throw away the corset and the silk! Adorn yourself in Poly and Velcro!
Welcome to Plastique Fantastique!”
10931471_10152688327264372_9050406982234957925_n(Yep, the text’s all about ironic, and humor)

Since I love all the quirky and crazy side of costuming as much as the hand finishing, of course I wanted in.

A quick googling gave me overloads of beautiful (if not totally historical accurate) versions of the 18th century.
Enjoy!

Lets start with the o so lovely masquerade costumes:
girls_aloud_-_cant_speak_french18th century Halloween costumes – because nothing says 18th century like short skirts and high heels…
(also, read my rant on over sexulized female costumes here)

images (2)Who can resit a purple polyester perm?

1403sexysuperdeluxemarieantoinettecostum“I’m a 18th century pirate wench” (in gold lame and pink…)

34632You just got to love the lovely polyester shine…

6317955-mid-adult-women-in-18th-century-style-dress-woman-century-queenDoes she have a table under that skirt?

marie-antoinetteOh, that’s one way to use grandmas curtains…

18-century-dress-5875693Gold and bows – what can go wrong?

Then there are some fine examples of movie costumes:fantomens-stjrna-i-rsa_57494828Stage costume from “The Phantom of he opera” (2004) – It’s got extra everything! I love it!

087918th century Velvet and gold through 1950s eyes.

And couture:images (6)John Galliano for Dior fall/winter 2000/2001

And dress patterns:79_1simp_marieChange the fabric, remove the zipper and make he stomacher detachable and you do get a pretty good looking 18th century gown – but for now It fit perfectly for my purposes

Then there are the ones that’s more like beautiful art pieces then costumes:Marie-Antoinette-in-Paris-325What is that marvelous material?

1520797_387418951435365_8312075050876152832_nI just got to have those lips!

10917033_387418898102037_1681442576664186359_n“Mm, cake…”

misssisterrosevioletfacebookPastels, huge hair and heart shaped mouches – whats not o love?

167336_1541549979585_4685664_nSaucy…

Fuyu-Corset-1-bd“Ops, I forgot my dress” (so beautiful)

aab1bdf17a21312e28ca6d57bb422c7a“It need some more height, don’t you think Monsieur Léonard?”

tumblr_mq3nfm701p1ri8bwro1_500Lady in (hair)distress

PRIChESKA-pod-parusomGhostly beautiful. Is that paper?

largeCrinoline pirate

marie_antoinette_garden_gown_1_by_johanna449-d41pqs3And Asian styled Antoinette

a557012d57e6302990b71825d96e6669The Kraken!

originalShip ahoy!

orig-11834371“Let them eat cake!”
I need to try this sometime  – any volunteers?

dior18thcenturyCouture (clearly influential by Sofia Coppola…)

tumblr_n2qpfp8KID1qbukmqo1_1280Promo pic from “Marie Antoinette” (2006)

Fashion School Graduation Collection 2006

It’s been 9 years since I finished fashion school.
A lot has happened since then, but I thought to share my Graduation collection with you.

The theme for the collection was “Myth and Fairytale”
And I named my collection “Dream of Venus” – I know , So cheesy, but I was only 18 back then.

Dream of Venus

We was asked to make a inspiration collage, from which we was to take colors and shapes to paint 15 fashion sketches, and produce/make 5 complete ensembles

IMG_0030My Inspiration collage

IMG_0033The colors I choose was blue, turquoise, white and gold.

Here are the five designs I decided to sew for the final fashion show.venus 11Halterneck dress

venus nr6Jacket and skirt

venus 2Halter top and floor length skirt

venus 7Jacket/cape and pants

venus 8Strap-less dress
We were assigned classmates to sew for and during 4 weeks we worked diligently to finish all the pieces in time for the fashion show.

My collection at the final fashion show:2E0X2737

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kjol-o-topp-modell

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byxor-och-jacka-modell - Kopia

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Looking back at it I think I did pretty good.
Of course there are lots of things I would do differently now, but I learnt a lot working on these pieces and I still love the pre-made two toned viscose fabric.

French mourning Veil – for a work party

On the week before my worked closed for summer, we had a big party – celebration our boss, who was quitting.

The theme of the party was sorrow, theater, nostalgia.
Me and the other girls at the office decided to focus on sorrow (because our beloved boss was leaving) and agreed on dress in mourning with a small black veil each.

The task of making the veils landed on me – well, I volunteered.

Here is what I did:
I started by cutting a piece of french veil approx 50 cm long, and stitched a gathering stitch through both short and one long side.
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Then I pulled the thread and gathered it tight, and secured it with some stitches.20150607_211546_resized

Then I made a bow of some scrap bias tape (I also used lace and silk ribbons) 20150607_212102_resized

I stitched the bow to the veil.20150607_212158_resized

And Voila – Done20150607_212651_resized

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20150607_212709_resizedUnfortunately I didn’t had enough french net for all five veils, so I used regular tulle for some of them.

IMG_1002Thankfully the tulle veil looked pretty good to.

Then it was time for the part…IMG_1092Attaching the veils using bobby-pins worked wonderfully.

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IMG_1007Group picture

IMG_1091Yep, that’s my work desk right behind me.
Who knew my office could be turned into a nightclub in just a few hours.

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IMG_1033Sorrow-Selfie with my boss.

Whaling sharks – Baby clothes

While still on the theme, I also want to show you the cute little pieces I made as a Christmas gift for our friends 6 months old son.

I just couldn’t resist this fabric.IMG_4783

Which I turned into a pair of pants…IMG_4778

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And another romper.IMG_4780This time I included the little foot pieces.

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I think I might get the hang of it by now, since it went so much easier this time around.IMG_4788

Now I’m done whit baby posts (for this time…), and will go back to focusing on historical stuff.

Learning to make Baby Clothes

As I told you in my last post I now have a legit reason to indulge in all the prettiness that is baby clothes.

I bought this pattern about 5 years ago – the first time it looked to be an addition to the family.
And it’s been unopened and forgotten since.IMG_9229But this summer (after the happy news) I dug it out again.

I ‘ve never done baby clothes before, and are quite a newbie at sewing in yersey.
So the decision to leap onto the kids clothes train was a bit of a scary one.IMG_9228 I decided to start with a bodice for the little girl (yeah, pick the most difficult thing you cold find, why don’t you…).

I bought a super cute gender neutral fabric in grey and red, some red knit, white stretch bias tape and snaps.IMG_9231

Then I got to work.

IMG_9250It’s crazy how small amount of fabric you need for these kind of clothes. Compared to my usual sewing that easily swallow 5 m of fabric

I found a twin needle in my stash, and stitched a few test rows before getting the tension right.IMG_9233 IMG_9234

Using the patterns step by step guide (perhaps for the first time), I basted the small reinforcements of the shoulders.IMG_9235

And stitched the reinforcements in the crotch.IMG_9236

Then I turned the seams over, finished the crotch with a twin seam and stitched the bodice pieces together.IMG_9237

Then I set the snaps.IMG_9241They where not very cooperative, and I had to pray a few mistakes lose and try again.

I had some trouble deciding on the size for the ankle cuffs. Since the pattern called for whole foot pieces I couldn’t get any help from there.IMG_9238After some hesitation I decided on the bigger ones – better to big then to small.

I finished the bodice by trimming around the neck and armholes with the red bias tape.

Finished:IMG_9242

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From the leftovers I made a quick little hat.  IMG_4773

Pattern: Burda Kids 9636

Fabric: 0,5 m of cotton yersey.

Notions: Thread, 7 snaps (front and back), 60 cm of bias tape and about 10 cm of red knit.

Time: 2 hours from drafting the pattern to finished.

Cost: about 100 sek – How knew that baby fabric and notions would be so expensive… I’ve made whole dresses for less.

Final thoughts: I’t was really fun to create such a quick and cute pieces. I liked it so much I immediately made another one (in about half the time) for a friends newborn son.