Monday, February 28, 2011

It's all about you # 2... plus Etsy Discount

The first of our "It's all about you" posts was seemingly pretty well received. I've been on the prowl again this past week. I am unbelievably flattered that such talented and interesting people as yourselves, should continue to take and interest in my "potterings"! So without further ado, and turning the spotlight on you, everyone meet...

Miss Katie over at Little Red Squirrel - A fellow redhead (which makes her automatically cool in my book;) and vintage enthusiast, with Fab personal style. Check out the great round up of vintage shoes AND images of the achingly fabulous Clerkenwell Vintage Fair in London. Enviable quiff too Katie!

Claire of Heart Handmade UK - Claire's blog is literally jam packed with crafty ideas, inspiration and tutorials. This year, Claire is challenging herself (and her readers if they feel so inclined) to embrace thriftiness in as many aspects of her life as possible. A girl after my own heart, he he!!

Eddie at Grey Duckling - Eddie just completed the most fantastically clever refashion  and is generally pretty crafty and clever! Which is probably why she makes such a great editor for the newly formed Refashion Co-op. Which, by the way, you should definately check out if you're into refashioning clothes. They're still accepting contributors so get in there quick. It's shaping up to be a great community blog and I'm pretty excited to be a part of it!

Sarah and her blog Narcoleptic in a Cupboard - The title of Sarah's blog may give some clue to her self deprecating nature! I always enjoy reading Sarah's posts. They're always well written, usually witty and self deprecating, and sometimes quite thought provoking. I really admire Sarah for the way she's doing her best to make lemonade out of the lemons life has occasionally given her in recent times. Plus, she's a pretty great quilter and crafter to boot!


Don't forget to use the 25% off Etsy coupon before it expires. Just enter ITSALLABOUTYOU at checkout before Thursday 3rd March, midnight GMT.
Have a great day.
Pxxx

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Thrifty Finds #15 - and an Etsy Discount

I have been waiting for a glimpse of remotely decent light so that I could photograph some of my recent thrift finds. I was finally rewarded on Wednesay, (ah,the sun! Where has it been all this time?! I forgot how much better everything is when the sky is blue...) but it's taken me this long to get round to editing them...
This is really a fraction of what I have. All of these are destined for my Etsy Shop over the next couple of days. As promised, as readers of this blog, if you see something you like the look of in the shop, please accept 25% off as a little gift from me. Just enter the coupon code ITSALLABOUTYOU at checkout. This code wil be active for the next 5 days, until midnight GMT on Thursay 3rd March.
Hope you're enjoying your weekend...
Px

Sorry!

May I apologise for the dreadful number of typos in my last post. I have just re-read it this morning with fresh eyes (I confess I was distracted by my waiting bubble bath last night...) and spent some time correcting everything. Oooops! By way of explanantion, the Little Tornado managed to pull the space bar and a coule of letter keys off my laptop recently, and although I eventually fixed it, it's not been quite the same since...if in doubt, blame the child!! Ha, ha!! I knew he'd come in useful ;) Pxxx

Friday, February 25, 2011

Restyle # 8 - Pashmina to dress to tunic!!

A girl's allowed to change her mind right?? I blogged about this pashmina restyle a few days ago and hadn't made my mind up then EXACTLY what I was going to do with it. Then, after I had created the neck hole, tried it on and saw how much fabric and length I had to play with, I decided it just HAD to be a dress. Oh, and that it would look really cool with a wide black band at the bottom. So away I went. Chalking, pinning, basting, french curving, binding, facing....so my old pashmina went from scarf to dress like so...

I wanted to include this stage of the process as, in principle, I actually really liked it. The colour blocking aspect of it really worked, I think. Unfortunately pretty much everything else was wrong! The fabric I used for the band was totally wrong for the pashmina fabric and they just jarred against eachother making the whole thing hang rather oddly; as if I had a hula hoop sewn intothe hem or something. So out came my trusty seam ripper (oh seam ripper, oh seam ripper....) and instead I turned it into this...


I think I prefer it with a belt...
I'm not super comfortable infront of a camera as you can probably tell. But I figured I ought to try and get used to it if I'm going to continue this blogging malarkey. So, sorry for subjecting you to such stiffly posed photos!

Anyway, this fabric was tricky to work with. Not only was it a pretty loose weave and frayed within seconds, but it was also seriously off grain in directions I never knew even existed. I had to be super vigilant to avoid badly twisted seams. Also, the technique that I followed to created the neckhole could do with a bit of tweaking. Specifically I'm not happy with the way the facing for the neckline opening worked out.

But all things considered, the result is not bad at all, and a refashioning technique that I will definately repeat. (with a few improvements). The neckline is easy to do and I like the closure detail at the back (you can just make it out in the photos. Angle is a bit wrong to see it fully) I like the flattering effect of the vertical stripes. (The narrow black stripe is actually a picot style cut out) and I really like the shape of the sleeves. This pashmina fabric is beautifully soft against the skin, drapes really nicely and there was loads of it when I opened the scarf out fully. I was amazed at what a plentiful source of fabric these scarves potentially are and am already figuring out ever more devious uses for them. I see them constantly when out thrifting.

I can post a break down of my construction processes if anyone wants to do one of these refashions themselves. I followed step by step instructions for the neck from a fab book I thrifted recently.
Anyhoooo, I have a date with a bath full of bubbles...hope you all have a wonderful weekend.

Pxxx

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Ode to a Seam Ripper

Oh seam ripper, Oh seam ripper
How wonderful thou art
To rescue me so deftly
From another dodgy dart

Oh seam ripper, oh seam ripper
When I sucumb to messy stitching
You sort out all my cock ups
Without laughing,without bitching

Oh seam ripper, oh seam ripper
You remain suprisingly chipper
When faced with yet another
Of my dodgy, bodged up zippers

Oh seam ripper, oh seam ripper
As I make do and mend
What would I do without you
My trusty, pointy friend?!

(Anyone would think I had loads of time on my hands huh?! I am just LOVING my seam ripper, that's all....Px)

Random Inspiration...

Clockwise from top left:
  • I adore this colour combo from Sessun. Not one I've tried before but can see it potentially featuring in my Autumn wardrobe.
  • I'm hoping this cute blouse soon becomes part of the range at Colette Patterns. Larger image here. Incidentally, have you seen the great series of turorials on seam finishes??
  • What a great Mantra this is! (Source unknown)
  • I'm intrigued by this skirt and top combo by Topshop Unique (Not so much the hairdo and black nose though, lol!). Seen here. There's some ideas for refashioning in here somewhere...
  • This pale yellow vintage dress is destined for my Etsy shop as alas, it is too small for me. But I really love the details on it. Perhaps I'll make a top similar to this.
  • My obsession with collars continues. I've been toying with the idea of making a collar that's interchangeable with plain tops/dresses. This little beauty is from Beta Boutique.
  • I love this image. I first saw it here. This lady is so beautiful and enigmatic. Timeless. Plus I'm loving the way she's wearing that headscarf. They always slide right out of my hair though. Really annoying! Any tips??
  • Adore the lean and clean lines of this look from Dace

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

When 2 year olds get style conscious...

The Little Tornado picked out this little ensemble all on his own. We were heading out to see the lady at the Post Office and he was clearly anxious to look his best....(!)

..and of course no self respecting 2 year old can be seen in public without his shades. (Especially when there hasn't been a glimpse of the sun for days!). Just for the record, he is rarely this serious. The sideways glance was totally put on for the camera. I was crying with laughter at his self awareness, but he would not be phased. Style is a serious business after all...

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Sewing Basic # 10 - Encased Elasticated Waistband

The "dress to skirt" restyle as seen in my last post and an earlier restyle, has got to be the simplest restyle of all. Lop the top portion of the dress off then sew in some elastic. There's a couple of ways that I'm aware of to create an elasticated waistband. The one I did on my grey dress restyle, and this one...

1. Press over the raw edge about 0.5cm all the way round, then press it over again about 1-2cm depending on the width of your elastic. Pin in place and mark a 3-4cm "gap" using a couple of pins as markers either side. Then sew all the way around, close to the bottom edge of your waistband casing, but leave the gap between the 2 pins open/unsewn.
2. Measure the amount of elastic you need by holding it around your waist so it is stretched a little, but comfortable and secure. Cut the relevant length  of elastic (allow 2" ontop of your desired length for knotting) and knot it on the end of a crochet hook. Use the crochet hook to feed the elastic through the "gap" in the waistband casing, all the way around and back out the other end of the gap. Knot the 2 ends of the elastic together. Trim if necessary. Hand or machine sew the gap in the waistband casing.

There you go! Bob's your uncle & your dress is a skirt!!

The whole series of "Sewing Basics" can be found here: http://portialawrie.blogspot.com/search/label/Sewing%20Basics
Previous  Restyles are here: http://portialawrie.blogspot.com/search/label/Restyles

Monday, February 21, 2011

Restyle # 7 - Maxi Skirt

What with everything that's gone on this past week I've had zero time for sewing. (Apart from J's trouser hems of course!) So I was glad to steal away for half an hour (while Little Tornado was napping) this afternoon, and tick something else off my restyle pile...


I thrifted this little number  for £1 just because I really like the print, and the fabric is nicely lightweight and drapey. It's the classic "dress to skirt" restyle with the top of the dress chopped off and a casing sewn for an elasticated waistband. Nothing fancy at all, but I really like this skirt already and think it will prove itself a really versatile wardrobe basic.

It'll work well in the summer with a cami and gladiator sandals. Because of the elasticated top it will still work as a dress on the beach , or belted under a cardi. Looking forward to trying out some variations. Should be a good "remix" item.

Encased elasticated waistband tutorial to follow for those that have never tried it before...

Up next is this pashmina/oversize scarf.  It started off as one thing and it's evolving into something completely different...just hope it works, lol!

Pxxx

Sewing Basics # 9 - Altering Trouser Hems

It's been pretty manic around here this last week. The big news is that J has got a job! It means we should hopefully start having a normal family life for the first time since the Little Tornado was born. It's actually a bigger deal than I can ever express here. Relief and excitement all rolled into one. But that's another post altogether!
Last night found me hemming J's new suit trousers. I'd never done this before and was a little trepidatious about cutting into something he'd just bought new from a shop, so I took my time, and overall it's a pretty good result. So I thought I'd share my processes here:

1. I began by looking at how the existing hem was constructed.  These trousers had a simple overlocked raw edge and heel tape. You know the kind. It reinforces the hem where it rubs against the shoe and stops the fabric wearing thin in this area.. (Anyone know the correct term? I'm just guessing!) Essentially I wanted to copy this construction, just further up the leg.
2. I got J to put the trousers on inside out (I got a funny look at this stage. He soooo doesn't get it!) and wearing the shoes he would be wearing. I then pinned the hems up so the trousers were the desired length, lining up the side seams, and ensuring the new hem skimmed the sole of his shoe at the back. Basically, a few milimetres above the base of his shoe so the hem wouldn't be dragging on the ground. I made a note of how much length I had taken up. (3.5 inches)

1. I measured up 3.5 inches from the fold mark where the hem had been. The blue marker on my seam gauge is where the new hemline needs to be.
2. I then measured how much seam allowance the original hem had by measuring up from the overlocked edge to the original hem fold, and noted this measurement too. (Approx 2.5inches)
1. I marked a line 3.5" from the original hem fold to indicate the new hemline. Then I marked another line 2.5" from this line to indicate the new cutting line...
2. ...and cut...!

I then "overlocked" the raw edges and pressed the 2.5" seam allowance up all the way round, creating a fold line in the new hem. Then with the trousers RS out, I pinned and then basted the heel tape in place. Just below the hem fold, on the RS. The second picture shows:
1. The hem fold    
2. The heel tape basted in place.   
3. The "overlocked"edge of the hem allowance
I machine stitched along both edges of the heel tape, all the way around each trouser leg, using a straight stitch.
1. This shows the trouser legs right way out, with heel tape in place and hem ready to be turned in.
2. The finished article, with the hems turned in and hand stitched in place. (Hopefully with barely visible stitches on the right side!)

Probably the only thing I'd do differently is to buy an overlocker!! The overlock stitch on my regular machine is fine, but I'm starting to find myself craving a more  professional finish....

Friday, February 18, 2011

Thrifty Finds # 14 - And a blog mini makeover

Inspired and spurred on by a recent blog makeover by the talented Andrea (who I mentioned in our recent "It's all about you" post), and a recent thrift find (namely this vintage 30's clock) I've been tinkering with the look of my blog...

What do you think? I'm just loving salmon pink tones at the moment and I've done a co-ordinating header for my Etsy shop so the two tie in....still tinkering and pottering with it....but so far?

The eagle eyed amongst you may have noticed that I have jumped from Thrifty finds #12 to Thrifty Finds #14.  Now I'm a bit like my Dad was, in the sense that I'll deliberately walk under ladders just to show superstition who's boss. But things in our life (myself, J and the LT) have taken such an unexpected and dramatic change for the better in the last couple of days, (I think I've hinted before how tough the last few years have been) I've decided not to "provoke" superstition just this once and see how that pans out....!

Thrifty Finds # 12 - Aaargh, to keep or sell??

My thrifting trips these days are a combination of purchases to keep, and purchases to sell on. I usually know as I  buy something, whether it's for me/us, or whether I intend to sell it on. But occasionally I'll throw myself a curve ball (just to be awkward) and buy something with the intention of selling it, and then go and fall in love with it....

This is one such instance. I adore the styling on this vintage American Tourister vanity case, almost as much as I love the olive green colour. The clasp mechanism is really quirky, the quilted lining is just scrumptious.

So the angel on my shoulder is saying this: "considering I don't travel  a great deal, can I really justify keeping it,when selling it would contribute to the greater good of the family budget"

The naughty little devil on my other shoulder is saying this: " Awwww, it WAS very cheap (and I mean VERY cheap) and you'll never find another one like this, you know. What's the harm? You're putting plenty of other things in the shop. If you love it, have it. Perks of the job, surely?..."

Both reasonable arguments, I think you'll agree (The devil on my shoulder always does more talking than the angel too. That says something about me, I'm sure. Hmmmm.) You can see my dilemma though?

What would you do???

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Sewing Basics # 8 - Transfering alterations from Muslin to Pattern

I did a little more work on my "Go To" dress this week and thought it would be a good opportunity to share my processes for transferring the alterations I had made to the muslin, onto my paper pattern. This is where we left off...  I'd marked and sewn the alterations and checked the fit, which I was happy with. Next step was to transfer the markings...this is what the toile/muslin looked like...
1. I began by using my seam ripper to unpick all the seams and alterations and pressed the front piece of the muslin flat.
2. I then laid the paper pattern on top of the muslin along the CF line lining up the neckline and armholes.
For the CF Tuck:
1. On the paper pattern, I marked the points at which the CF tuck met the CF line and the neckline
2. Then joined these 2 points using a ruler so as to create the exact mirror image of what was on the muslin.
For the Bust Dart:
1. On the paper pattern I marked the 3 points at the base of the dart
2. For the transferring the bust dart point I placed the paper pattern underneath the muslin. Again aligning it with the CF line, neckline and armholes...I then pierced through the dart point on the muslin using the point of my seam ripper
3. This made a mark on the pattern underneath..
4. I then used a ruler to join the points at the base of the dart with the newly marked dart point...
Et voila...CF tuck and Bust Dart transferred to the paper pattern...
There are numerous techniques for transferring pattern markings. I am by no means saying this is the best one, but personally, I don't see the point in overcomplicating things. So this has worked perfectly for me, and my tutor was satisfied with the accuracy of this technique too. So that's more than good enough for me. ;)

Next stage is to rotate the bust dart to a position where it doesn't interfere with the armhole curve AND fold out the CF tuck....

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

It's all about you....

Ever since I started blogging a few months back, I've discovered the blogosphere's unique capacity to connect me with like minded people in a way I'd never experienced before. I've been truly flattered by the number of people who find what I say, make or do, interesting enough to want to follow my blog. I've felt so encouraged by all of your comments recently that I feel like giving you all a massive virtual hug!

Thing is, every time someone discovers my blog and decides to follow it, they in turn allow me to discover them, and I've met some great people and discovered some equally great blogs this way. Did you know, that as a follower of this blog, you are in some pretty fabulous company?? Possibly, you don't. Which is why I thought it would be a pretty cool idea to start introducing you all to eachother! So each week, (or so!) I thought I would start sharing some of the fun and interesting bits I've found on your blogs....

So, everyone, meet...

Mandi at Make it Dear - Actually our blogs, and it seems our lifestyles/interests, are spookily similar. Our "better halves" are namesakes, we are Moms to toddler boys (actually I've only managed the one!). Mandi also has a penchant (and a good eye may I add) for thrifting, her own Etsy shop, and dabbles in a bit of refashioning, knitting and general craftiness! Recently did a fab jersey shirt restyle. http://makeitdear.blogspot.com/

Sam at All Things Quilty and Sewy - A prolific sewist and all round lovely gal over in Sydney, Australia. Sam recently spent an entire weekend having a "Sewathon" at a friends house. What a fantastic idea! (Oh, and she has the most gorgeous new/vintage bicycle that I'm totally jealous of!) http://hand-quilter.blogspot.com/


AJA at Farmhouse Garden - Avid vintage sewist, new Mum, Etsy seller, farm dweller (yep, chickens and everything!!). Actually AJA has her fingers in so many pies (figuratively speaking and homemade ones of course!) that you'll just have to hop over to her blog to see what I mean. Fabulous lady. http://farmhousegarden.blogspot.com/

Andrea at Andrea's Garden - I really don't have the words to tell you how talented this lady is for one so young, and how much I admire what she does. She has the loveliest blog, her own range of jewelry and hand spun yarn on Etsy, is another avid thrifter and "refashionista"! http://andreasgarden.blogspot.com/

Guess what......

I got interviewed (I know, little old me??!!) for a special feature on "Thrifters Around the World" over at Thrift Core. I was really flattered  that Van asked me to be a part of it and from what she tells me it's gonna turn out to be a fun series...

I'm looking forward to hearing about some great thrifting destinations from fellow thrifters so I can plan some fun trips in the summer!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Etsy Love....Oh Dear!!

I have made the fatal, schoolgirl error of browsing Etsy while waiting for my listing photos to upload...doh!!
I think I may be in love....
Unfortunately for me my birthday was back in December, along with Christmas and I discovered these too late to hint for Valentine's day! Sigh...;) (I shall just have to find another reason for  J to want to buy one for me!) They are the stylish handiwork of Zetem on Etsy. Aren't they gorgeous?!

Check this out # 4 - A beautiful heart...

In celebration of this day of love.. Check out this beautiful tutorial
Andrea's blog, Everyday Beauty is anything but everyday and ordinary. It's exquisite. She doesn't post often,but what she does post is never anything short of perfect. A total visual feast.
Happy Valentine's Day.
Px

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Thrifty finds # 11 - An emerging obsession

A recent thrifting trip resulted in a few rather decent pieces of vintage costume jewelry for my new Etsy shop.  I'm being drawn to vintage brooches for some inexplicable  reason recently (well, apart from the fact that they're just delicious of course!)...
A couple of them had backstamps/signatures on them. My inquisitive mind being what it is I settled down with the laptop and a cup of hot chocolate and did some googling. Vintage costume jewelery is a whole new, interesting and delicious world to explore!! I have to confess to a new addiction forming....

Saturday, February 12, 2011

"Go To Dress" Neckline inspiration...

In terms of how long it will take me if I could just get round to it, I'm really very close to finalising the basic pattern for my "Go To" dress. I had a few ideas at the outset as to what it was that I wanted to achieve and had been trawling the web for examples and other ideas. There's definately a trend forming in what I picked out and what I sketched out originally. Namely Peter Pan collars, button plackets and pintucks, with a few new ideas that piqued my interest....
It's certainly helped to consolidate my ideas for the Go To dress going forward.  All that remains before I can get onto the "aesthetics" of it is for me to transfer the alterations from the last muslin to the draft (Bust darts and CF tuck) then re-draw the neckline curve. Oh yeah, and draft a basic sleeve...not much (!)
Better "Go To" it really, hadn't I...!!  Which of the above images stand out to you?

Images from  modcloth.com

Me Made March 2011

I Portia, hereby sign up as a participant of Me-Made-March '11. I endeavour to wear at least ONE self made or refashioned garment, each day,  for the duration of March 2011'
Lord help me!! LOL!

 If you want to know more about this challenge, then hop over to "So Zo" and check it out.
I think it's a great idea and I'm hoping it will help me to focus my sewing efforts on stuff that I'll actually be able to wear. As my tutor likes to point out (in the form of sarcastic little digs!)  I have a tendency to take on projects for the challenge and techniques I'll learn rather than it being a garment I'll realistically wear.Well, people, that stops right now!!
(Better crack on with my Swing dress!!)
Px

Friday, February 11, 2011

Restyle # 6 - A very quick one!

A very quick and simple, but very pleasing and effective restyle for me this week! I've been guilty of starting lot's of different projects, and as usual giving myself an excessive amount to do! As a result I have lot's in the pipeline but seem to have been doing alot of "preparatory" and technical work recently and hardly any actual garment sewing. So I needed one of those really quick fixes, and this was it....
A little vintage summer dress I picked up for £1 (I know!!) It was perfect apart from the frumpy length so was superquick to restyle. Half an hour I think. A simple shortening and re-hemming with a simple overcast hem. I actually really love it. Sometimes the simplest things are the best! It's lightweight cotton and will work layered up over the next few months and in the summer it will be really light and cool on the beach, in the garden. (and it kinda fits in with my Colette palette too!)

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Hypothetically speaking.....

I found this book on a thrifting trip the other day. It turns out the author  lives in my home town would you believe it! (Colchester. That's right I'm an Essex girl. Didn't you know?! ;) Anyhow, having looked through this book thoroughly I think it's pretty cool...

Aside from the rather fab 80's fashion sketches (?!) it takes you through the process of drafting a block/sloper to your own measurements.  From there it details how you can create an infinite variety of tops and blouses using your block/sloper as the template....
Now this isn't scary degree course type pattern drafting. It's very well explained and very clearly illustrated and very, well, simple really.  I am definitely gonna be working through this process for myself. I have a gap in my wardrobe for some well fitting and versatile basic tops, and having drafted a skirt block and my "Go To" dress (still ongoing!) I'm now hooked on the idea of clothes that are made to fit my specific figure "quirks".
So, hypothetically speaking... at some point in the near future...if I were to, say... host a "draftalong" (!)...would anyone else be interested in giving this a go, along with me?
We could take it stage by stage, starting with a blank sheet of pattern paper, going through the measuring process, drafting the basic pattern, fitting the shell, and then if we're really enjoying ourselves we can move on to do a couple of style variations on the basic block/sloper...and hey presto, some new bespoke tops for summer!
Fancy it???

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Miss P on Etsy...

Well, we're away! A few things loaded up and loads more to go on.  I'd be really grateful for any feedback regarding pricing, photography. Anything really!  Once I work out how to do it, will set  up a special discount code for you lovely lot!! I'm really excited that some of my items have already been included in some lovely treasury lists too...

Clever boy....!

I mentioned recently that J and I used to buy and sell on Ebay together, back in the day.  His obsession with thrifting is nowhere near as bad (?!) as mine. But every now and then he'll get a little instinct for something and decide to buy it.  Does anyone remember these....?
It's an 8 track cassette player. A "flash in the pan" bit of technology from the 70's that never really took off.  But it's actually a really decent sound AND you can skip tracks which you can't do on a normal cassette player. I love the retro styling and it was in immaculate condition and full working order.

Anyway, clever boy bought it for £10 from our local charity shop (a stack of albums included) and sold it on Ebay for £50. It went within a couple of hours of being listed. I keep telling him it must've been the fabulous photos I took for him....lol..seriously though..don't tell him, but....Miss P is quietly impressed!

Monday, February 07, 2011

Mystery Solved....

Between here, Flickr and the Thrift Collective the debate has been simmering away. French Press, fruit press and comb steriliser among the main theories....
I can now confirm with absolute confidence that it's a mixer for liquids. You pour in the liquids that you want to mix and pump the plunger up and down to whisk it up together. (You were close Sarah with your milk frother idea!)

According to the box it would have come in it is "for mixing, whisking, separating". It was this photo that gave it away....and I found the image on the right on this avid thrifter's blog...

Swing Dress Sewalong # 4 - Progress and a couple of sneaky tips!

I've been making slow but steady progress with my muslin for the sewalong.  Having spoken to my tutor I decided to go with my initial instinct of tracing/cutting the bodice for my chest measurement and adding in at the bust point AND the waist. Then cut the waistband and skirt to my actual measurements and hope everything matches up...
You can see below that as well as these alterations I've also lengthened the bodice. I'm not convinced I've done the right thing on the back bodice piece, but should know later today as I intend on assembling the muslin this afternoon...
The sneaky tips I refer to in the title of this post...

1. Baking parchment/greaseproof paper - It makes a fantastic substitute for pattern paper (when you forget to stock up and don't have anywhere you can buy locally, ahem!!) and is cheap as chips!!

2. Curtain weights - they're really handy as pattern weights. I removed the ones in the first set of photos, from some thrifted curtains I'd hacked up for another project, and they're just perfect for holding the paper in place when tracing and drafting. Who knew! (Probably everyone apart from me...;)

How are you doing with your muslin? Have you discovered any nifty little tricks recently that you're quietly impressed with?

Sunday, February 06, 2011

Thrifty Finds # 10 - and an appeal for help!!

Yes, more thrifting, lol!! But I could do with a little help with a couple of these items...
1. Shoes (for me yay!)  I love these but the canvas is a little stiff and starchy. Does anyone know any techniques for softening canvas and making it more supple?? Steaming perhaps?
2. Pyrex. But Pyrex what?? Does anyone know what this is used for, lol?! I just really loved the Vintage "atomic" vibe, but have no idea what it does! I might REALLY need it and just not know it!
3. Does anyone else remember these belts?? I loved these when I was a kid.
4. A vintage 1963 publication of McCall's Sewing. (In colour no less!)

Hope everyone is having a lovely weekend. Px
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