Grape Bubblicious Dress

by brae  

With my house on the market, miniatures have been harder to work on.  I've also had my sewing machine closed up to look like a desk.  :D

But, it's easy enough to set up the ironing board and take the machine for a spin while still being flexible for last minute house showings.  So, today I took out some garments that I already had cut and ready to sew.

This is the Grape Bubblicious Dress so named for the deep purple knit with scattered circle designs.  I bought this jersey knit fabric from back in 2011.  It's a border print, so I cut the dress to make use of the border design around the bottom.  I cut the top in the deep purple area to blend with the upper part of the skirt.

The fit is looser since I eliminated the side zipper, but that makes for a wonderfully comfy summer dress.

The pattern is Simplicity 4273, and this is not the first time I've used this dress pattern.  It's a very versatile pattern with a top, dress, skirt, pants and jacket.  The dress is a five pattern piece garment and very easy to put together, however, the fit does change depending on the weight and stretch of the knit so constant fittings are recommended to save your sanity.

The Lady and the Unicorn Desire Gown

by brae  

I was going through some old photos and found some of the costumes I've made over the years.  The over gown is made from red linen with white satin detailing at the neckline as well as the upper arms above the chiffon sleeves.  I used various trims throughout.  The chemise is bronze silk with wide passementarie trim along the cuffs and lower edge.

This ensemble was inspired by The Lady and the Unicorn Desire tapestry.

image from Wikipedia

I found a drawing of this gown in the book Medieval Costume in England and France: The 13th, 14th and 15th Centuries by Mary G. Houston and adapted patterns from Patterns for Theatrical Costumes: Garments, Trims, and Accessories from Ancient Egypt to 1915 by Katherine Strand Holkeboer to create it.


The drawing captures the detailing beautifully.

The over gown has two long slits on the sides.  It can be worn gathered into a belt to show the silk chemise underneath.  The gown itself has no boning, and corsetry wasn't indicative of the times, but I like the look of a clean line at the bodice so I've worn one underneath.

The hat is made from McCall's 4806.  It's been awhile since I made this outfit.  I didn't change the pattern, but I remember adding steps to the construction based on my millinery experience.  I used the same silk as the chemise and white satin from the dress.

This photo was taken at the Stronghold Olde English Faire.

It's a wonderful property that holds a faire every autumn, including tours of the Tudor revival mansion and tractor-pulled hayrides.  My friend does a wonderful presentation called A Knight to Remember -- definitely a must-see!  :D

Buttercream Beaded Dress

by brae  

I've been in love with this dress from The Cat's Meow in Toronto since I first saw it last summer.  Sadly, it is out of my price range, even though the boutique does offer layaway plans.  I'd likely have to have it altered, too, since it is a size larger than I normally wear.  :\

The boutique has a blog that features accessories as well as the fabulous window arrangements where I first saw this beautiful dress.  I warn you - you will get lost in all the lovely vintage fashion.  :D

The original dress is apparently a golden taupe, but I like the idea of a rich buttercream satin base.  I've done some beadwork in the past but nothing freehand or this extensive.  I'll have to dig out some photos of my Tudor gown to show you the beadwork on the skirt and sleeves.

Steampunk Holiday, part 8

by brae  

The final part of the Steampunk Holiday ensemble is the jacket with faux vest.

I altered Simplicity 2172 to make the jacket - changing the front slightly and cropping a lot of the length.  I also omitted the shoulder detailing, cuffs, pocket welts and back lacing.

I made a quick mockup of cotton fabric to test the fit and help with the front alteration.  I altered the front pattern piece with the vest portion by cutting off the lower piece that attaches to the side front.  I made a straight size 6, adding 3/8" to the front edge of the vest for a better fit over the corset.

I eliminated the pocket welts by using lining pattern piece 10 for the side front.  This substitution and the omission of the back lacing cut down a lot of time in construction.   I lined the chocolate velvet vest insert with brown satin and constructed each piece separate from the coat.  I put the buttonholes in at this time since it's easier to work with a small piece.

When it came time to sewing in the lining, I basted the vest fronts to the jacket beforehand.  This gives a more realistic impression of a vest under a jacket.

The rest of the jacket has charcoal and light grey polka dot satin lining.  :D

To finish the outer edge, I added grey-brown Venise lace.  I didn't limit the lace to the neckline but added it all the way around the suiting portion of the jacket.

The whole ensemble...

From the back...

The party was great fun with good food and good conversation.  :]

Steampunk Holiday, part 7 - skirt completed

by brae  

As I mentioned in the previous post on the Steampunk Holiday ensemble, I finished the skirt about a week ago.  It was a very simple pattern - front, back, lower flounce and a waistband.

I have it sitting a little low in today's photos, so I'll have to adjust that.  But, it doesn't get in the way when I walk.

It looks great when walking, too...gets narrow at the knee and the fishtail flares.

It's made from Vogue 7698.  I made no alterations except omitting the lining.

I added the knife pleated satin and velvet trim around the top of the fishtail flare.  It's just enough to accent the drape of the fabric.

I think a proper steampunk ensemble is supposed to involve tall lace-up boots, but I didn't have time to shop for those.  Instead, I'll be wearing these...Aerosoles Minor Role.  :D

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