Category: "Skirts (and pants)"

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

Steampunk Holiday, part 2

by brae  

Slight change of plans.  I had plenty of cream textured satin to cut out the bustier for the Steampunk Holiday ensemble, but I did not have enough of the pintuck copper taffeta.  It was a remnant bought long ago, but you can still find it online in subtle variations.  I decided to go to the local Joann fabrics to see if they still carry it.  I found brown, red and cream.  All lovely but not what I was after.

In the red tag sale bolts, I found a plan taffeta in a copper penny color.  Beautiful!  I had wondered, too, if the skirt fishtail might not flow well in the pintuck diamond fabric.  With the plain taffeta, the drape should be lovely.

Here are the two fabrics side by side.  The new fabric is more iridescent than the first fabric, so it has a wonderful range of color.

And, here is the new copper penny color with the other fabrics.  I also found a wonderful knife pleated satin and velvet trim that coordinates very well.

I looked for hat embellishments, and found this fun piece in the Christmas section.  It has tiny bells on it, too...just perfect for a winter holiday hat!

How's the hat form doing?  Very well...stay tuned!  :D

Steampunk Holiday, part 1

by brae  

Every year, the company I work for throws a wonderful party for employees at a beautiful location.  Since I don't have much occasion for formalwear besides, I always like making something interesting and special for the event.  Last year, I made a cocktail dress I called the Serendipity Dress.  This year, my theme is Steampunk.  :D  I won't be going over the top with gadgets and embellishments, but in general, the ensemble will be steampunk inspired.

My fabrics are chocolate brown cotton velvet, cream textured home décor fabric, copper pintuck décor fabric and grey-brown suiting.  I've chosen copper buttons and grey-brown lace trim.

I'll be using two different patterns for the outfit: Simplicity 2172 and Vogue 7698.

I will make the coat from pattern 2172, with grey-brown suiting for the body and brown velvet for the false vest front.  I will omit the shoulder wings and lace cuffs as well as eliminate most of the length.  I plan to trim the neckline with the grey-brown lace and use the copper buttons for the velvet false vest.  The cream textured satin will be used for the bustier from pattern 2172.  I plan to add ivory buttons down the front.  The copper pintuck fabric will be used for the skirt from pattern 7698.  All very smart, no?  :D

To top it off, I plan to make a brown velvet fascinator with ivory netting.  I took a millinery class at a local fabric store 13 years ago, and we made a pillbox hat.  I learned to work with buckram, millinery wire and batting, fabrics and trims.  Since that class, I've made several historical reproductions to go with various costumes.  This time, I'd like to make a simple teardrop cocktail hat.

You can purchase teardrop buckram bases on etsy and the like, but I already have the materials on hand.

millinery batting and wire


The one thing I don't have is a hat form, and I see no reason to acquire one since I don't plan to make tons of hats.  So, I did some sleuthing online and found this post on making a teardrop form without a hat form.  The author mentions using a bowl, and so I had a gander around my kitchen.  I even looked in the fridge.  Voilà!  I have a lettuce keeper (or in my case, a spinach keeper).  :D  It has a nice dome shape.  Unfortunately, there is still spinach in it.  :\

I wet a piece of buckram and shaped it over the lid...then back into the fridge it went.  We'll see tomorrow if the buckram has held its shape well enough to take it out for final drying.  I suppose I could cover the bowl with foil and keep the lid out to dry.

Boden USA inspired autumn outfit

by brae  

I haven't written here in so long mainly because minis took over my creative time again.  There just aren't enough hours in the day to pursue all my creative outlets.  :\

But, with the end of summer approaching, I feel the urge to sew again.  And, all the lovely fall catalogs showing up in my mailbox have loads of inspiration.

The new Boden USA fall catalog had this delicious outfit that instantly caught my eye.  I love the colors, patterns and textures.

Unfortunately, it is a little pricey for my budget:

Orange polka dot top - $78
Cable sweater - $118
Tan bouclé skirt - $118
Total - $314

Detail pictures of the items shown in the inspiration picture.

I love the inspiration picture, but several things about the items themselves don’t work for me.  The orange top has fantastic fabric, but I can tell the boxy cut will not flatter me at all.  The sweater has a crew neck which isn’t as ideal for me as a V-neck and it also looks boxy.  The skirt is lovely, but paying over $100 for a pencil skirt that would take me two hours to make offends my sensibilities.

For the top, I’m thinking a fitted tank in Amy Butler Lotus Full Moon cotton.

To me, it’s the orange polka dot fabric that really makes the look.  And, with a cardigan, I like a more fitted silhouette underneath.  I already have the fabric and several shirt patterns to choose from -- this one is Simplicity 2703 for example.  It has some pleated details at the neckline, too, so I could retain that detail of the original inspiration piece.

For the sweater, I found two options that will work well for color and texture.  Each will change the look of the outfit depending on which one I wear with it.  On the left is the Charter School V-neck cardigan from ModCloth at $35.  On the right is the Donegal Cable cardigan from Eddie Bauer at $68.

For the pencil skirt, I could buy beige bouclé, but I already have some lovely beige woven suiting fabric that is softer and more versatile.  I also have a basic pencil skirt pattern.  It might even be fun to punch up the feminity of the outfit with the Vogue 8317 bustle skirt I love so much.

Now to find the time to make it all come together.  :]

Seeking out of print Vogue 7880 8-12 skirt pattern

by brae  

Does anyone have a Vogue 7880 skirt pattern size 8-12 they are willing to part with?  I just realized that the pattern I've had in storage all these years (and want to sew now that I've found the right fabric for it) is the size 14-18.  :[

I'd be willing to trade my 14-18 for your 8-12 or buy it outright.  My pattern is new, uncut and factory folded.  I want View A size 10, so if your pattern is cut for the size 10 and includes all the pieces, I'd be interested in that as well.  I just really want to make this skirt!  :D


Please email me by clicking the envelope next to my name above.  Thank you!

Update: found one!!!  :D

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