Monday, 20 August 2012

Monday, 13 August 2012


I haven't deserted the blogging world, but I'm sooo busy that I just don't have time for a proper post.
I spent the last two weeks sewing everyday. trying my best to get the wedding sewing done before my self imposed deadline of Wednesday.
The Wedding isn't until Mid September, but I want all the major construction done before I have a holiday. The dress is mostly done, just the lining to attach in the bodice, fastening on the waist stay and hem.
The coat and trousers have quite a bit more to be done on them. I constructed the shell of the coat today. cut out the lining and sewed the welt pocket on the back of the trousers (not easy in thick, fulled wool!).
I'll take a break tomorrow as it's Cai's Birthday and we'll be doing some stuff together.
So on Wednesday I hope to - Line the coat; finish the trousers apart from the fastening and the hem. I might even pin on some of the decorative braid.
will try and give you a sneak peak tomorrow.

Saturday, 4 August 2012

Date Night

On Tuesday John and I went out for a meal and then the cinema to watch Batman.
We started in the Brew Dog bar in Newcastle. My favourite beer- Hardcore IPA. Followed by tapas at La Tasca - yum. Then to the IMAX at the metro centre. Fab night out

Friday, 3 August 2012

My Birthday "Cake"

My Birthday cake - created by my hubby and the kids. Containing 300g Dairy Milk chocolate, 2 Mars bars, 1 bag of peanut M&M's, Rice Crispies, Marshmallows, Gummie Bears, Foam Mushrooms and Dolly Mixtures - that is all!

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Dress Factor - The Elizabeth Dress

So here it is.

I need some photos of me wearing it. but I need my hubby's help for that and he's at work!

This is my entry for the Dress Factor - a competition run by The Sewing Directory and Abakhan Fabrics.

The process was quite simple, but sewing all those curved seams was a bit of a nightmare.
I began with a self drafted close fitting bodice and added a semi circle skirt before drawing in the style lines. It was important to allow the lines to go through, or very close to the ends of and darts so that the pattern pieces would lie flat. I did have to cut one piece along the original side seam, as it would not lie flat enough.

The seams were marked with with plenty of match points to enable accurate matching on the complex curves.

I decided to underline the dress, as the cotton fashion fabric was very light and the seam allowances would have shown through. I used a light weight curtain lining from my stash. this would give a crisp finish and help the skirt swing without need of an underskirt.

The pattern pieces were cut from the lining and fashion fabric at the same time and basted together. I used machine basting. as it would also act as stay stitching.

 The seams were sewn, matching notches and clipped/ notched and pressed open using a tailors ham.

Once all seams were sewn and the invisible zip was sewn into the side the seams needed neatening. I had decided not to line the dress and that meant catch stitching all the seam allowances to the underlining. = very long job. About 10 hours hand sewing.

Once this was complete the neckline and armholes were finished with a bias facing cut from the white fabric. It was machined to the neck/ armhole line and turned under and fell stitched in place.

I'm very happy with the finish, but If I did this style of dress again, I would pink the seam allowances and fully line the dress.

Bridesmaid Dresses

Finally I can post some photos of the bridesmaid dresses I made for Bob & Jessie's wedding. I don't have any of my own photos yet, but can share some of my friends. The dresses were quite unusual colouring for a summer wedding; being rust, red and plum, but they looked stunning together.

I was very aware when constructing these to make sure they were secure. there is nothing worse than a strapless dress that feels insecure and needs to be constantly pulled up. I made an inner bodice with boning and waist stay and then attached the shell to the top edge. All the dresses were self drafted and I did not use a pattern as they were quite simple. the skirt is simply semi circular and the bodice is princess seamed.

The fabric was a crepe and quite delicate, the sashes were made from habotai silk edged in Northumberland tartan ribbon (to match Bob's kilt) and a cotton flower braid.

The Bridesmaids and Ushers travelled to the wedding in the back of Annie - Bob's Landrover. It was decked out in white and flowers in the back. certainly a unique from of wedding transport!

I'll share more Photos when I have them.
Photos: Rachel Caisley


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