Wednesday, June 29, 2011

June challenge dress 3 - Fail?

There was a change of plan and I didn't tell you. Do you remember the dresses I chose for the challenge? Turns out I wasn't completely sold on the last two: the shirtdress, I was afraid I wouldn't have  worn it and the one with the peter pan collar needed some adjustements which I hadn't time to make (but maybe I'll still try that pattern in the future). So, after seeing Mathilde's beautiful version of this very simple dress from Burda 05/2010, I decided I could try and make it myself. It's not a silhouette I usually wear (and I still don't know how much I will wear it).

I used a cotton lawn I had in my stash and when I noticed it was going to be too similar to a nightgown, I decided to use grey for the back piece, to create some interest (I love the combination of grey and pink). I modified the button placket on the front piece just sewing the two parts together and putting the buttons as decoration. I was afraid buttonholes would get too stressed over time, since it's a quite snug on the breast area.
The back is very flattering (even on a not-so-fit-looking back like mine). Do you remember I told you I had a very bad sunburn? Here it is:

It would seem that 30+ sunscreen is not enough when hiking. Lesson learnt.
Anyway, I still think it looks too much like a nightgown, although it's much cuter with a cardigan. Please, give me your imput!
Now, just one more dress to go! I hope I'll be able to finish it tomorrow and post photos on Friday. I'll be one day late, but I'm sure you will forgive me. :)

P.s. Isn't that Macaron necklace cute? It' made by the lovely Merylu of Petite Fraise, you can find links to her shops on her blog.

Monday, June 27, 2011

June challenge dress 2 - Burda 101

It's the last week of June and I miss two more dresses! Don't worry, one is done and the last one is already cut and ready to be sewn.
This, instead, is dress number 2, for which I used pattern 101 from Burda 02/2011. This pattern was quite successful among bloggers, so you probably might have already seen it.

I modified the front bust part by pivoting the darts (I used Gertie's tutorial). I wanted to create a chevron effect and I am satisfied with the result, although the subtle stripes of the fabric I used did not give the dramatic effect I would have preferred. So I used piping on the neckline and arm openings and I sewed a band on the hem with the stripes going in the opposite direction.
I like this dress, although not nearly as my previous one. The fit is good, but not excellent: when I lean forward there's a BIG gap between my bust and the dress, which is something I also really hate in RTW garments. I guess I should start to make FBA on my patterns... Do you have any suggestions?
It looks better belted, but of course I forgot to take a photo with a belt on.

Speaking of photos, I really care about the quality of the images on my blog and that's why I'm really disappointed with this photoshoot. My brother kindly borrowed my camera without asking, so I had to shoot with my old crappy point-and-shoot camera. Plus, I went hiking on the Alps yesterday, so you can see from my weitd facial expressions that I was pretty exhausted, but it was so worth it, since I got to see places like this one:

I also got a very ugly sunburn on my shoulders, which you'll see on Wednesday, when I'll show you my third dress. Bye, for now!

Monday, June 20, 2011

June challenge dress 1 - The "Parfait" Sundress

The "parfait" sundress, you know, because "parfait" means perfect in French... That was quite a lame play on words, uh? Hey, it's not easy to be funny in another language!
Anyway, let me introduce you one of the creations I'm most proud of: the Parfait dress from Colette. It's also my first finished garment for the June challenge.

I really think this is the perfect sundress: it's comfy while very flattering, I love the stripes and the  seersucker has a great consistency. It even has cute pockets!
It's actually not my first attempt at this pattern: I had tried it maybe two years ago but I made a terrible fabric choice (a silky material) and it ended up looking too much like a slip. Since then, the pattern rested in my box until I decided I had to give it another go... and it was a success!
I didn't make ANY modifications to the pattern and it fits like a glove. Don't you love when that happens? And I added soft pink buttons for extra cuteness.

I'm going to add the photos of this garment to the Flickr group of the June challenge. Check it out if you haven't already, there's some beautiful stuff there.
The second dress is almost ready, so hopefully you will see it by the end of this week.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Inspiration: Dice Kayek Fall/Winter 2011/2012 Collection

In yesterday's post, I included a photo from Burda of a Dice Kayek dress. Since I had never heard of this designer, I googled it and it turns out it's a very popular Turkish brand; I was also suprised by the beatiful images that popped in front of my eyes. Their collection for next winter is so elegant, I love the architectural feel of the clothes and the color palette. I hope you like it as well!
You can find photos of the whole collection here.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Burda 07/2011

Hey, there! I hope you don't mind if I skip another Highlights of the Week post (although I received some positive feedback from Mathilde which made me really happy), but I have some eye candy for you! Yep, that's right: after the disaster of April, we have another good Burda issue, it would seem.
Let's see my favorites:

I love the silhouette, the pockets and the v-neckline in the front and in the back. The panels in the front give the possibility to play a bit more with this pattern (you can use two different fabrics).

This is the designer pattern of the month (by Dice Kayek) and I think it's quite interesting. I don't like how stiff the peplum is on the model and I'm not sure how good it would look on me, but I'd be curious to see.

I would add darts or something to give more definition at the waist, but again, I find this interesting. They even used piping, which is quicly becoming one of my favorite embellishments to use (seen here and here).

A beautiful retro silhoutte, YAY! I'm just afraid that a slit on the side might look vulgar... I'll check when the magazine will arrive.

In other Burda news, do you remember that retro-looking halter dress in the June issue I fell in love with? Mena at the Sew Weekly showed us how to use this pattern to recreate a Modcloth dress. I'm seriously considering to make this after I finish my dresses for the June challenge.

Check back on Monday for my first finished dress for the challenge and a have a great weekend!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

The June challenge

Hello everyone! No, I'm not dead nor I disappeared on a tropical island... I'm just undergoing a stressful time with my university exams and sometimes blogging feels like too much distraction, so I took a little break from it. I'm looking forward to the half of July, when my exams will be over.

Anyway, a BIG thank you to everyone that commented on my Ginger skirt, you were all so kind! You also helped me figure out that I should shorten the skirt a couple cms to make it more wearable (although I haven't done this yet, ahem).

Today I have a little announcement, something exciting for this blog: I decided to participate to Stephanie's June Challenge which consists in creating four dresses in June. Yes, I'm VERY late (as usual, I might add), so to be realistic I might not make it and finish the last dress in the first week of July. I hope the other participants will forgive me, if that happens. I decided to take part to the challenge in order to keep myself productive: when I'm stressed, I tend to procrastinate a lot and to waste a bunch of time basically doing nothing. This is going to be a nice incentive to spend my free time more wisely and to do some sewing, which usually relaxes me a lot.

These are the dresses I chose:

♥ Dress 101 from Burda 02/2011
♥ Colette's Parfait
♥ Dress 128 from Burda 05/2011
♥ Dress 117 from Burda 05/2011

And these are the fabric choices I've already made:

A blue/greyish lightweight cotton for the first dress. I want to play a little bit with the stripes (you'll see).

More stripes! This is seersucker, I love its texture and the colour gives me a bit of nautical feel (yes please!).

That's it for now, but expect more soon; after all, I have quite a bit of catching up to do!

Friday, June 3, 2011

A Ray of Sunshine

Here's my Ginger skirt from the Colette pattern! I didn't officially participate to the sew-along but I followed all of Sunni's great posts on the construction; yesterday I finally took the time to actually make the skirt and I whipped it in a few hours.

I wanted to post these photos earlier today but I ended up working from morning to night, with a little break for dinner and taking pictures (this also explain the crazy facial expressions… sorry, I was exhausted). You can actually see the beautiful weather here in Italy: it's raining a lot and the temperature is below 15°C. Yay! Today it's a festivity here, so many people were counting on the long weekend and are quite disappointed.

But enough with the context, let's talk about the skirt.
I used some striped fabric cotton with a slight stretch that I had in my stash. I chose it for two reasons stash bustin' and an attempt to include lighter colors in my summer wardrobe. I wanted to make version 3 of the skirt, but I didn't have enough fabric, so I placed the stripes horizontally for the waistband and vertically for the rest of the skirt in order to add some interest. I had included pockets in the side seams, but I ended up cutting them away because they added too much bulk in my already bulky hip area. What else? The instructions are (as always) amazing and it's a very good pattern, although I don't like the A-line shape on me so it won't be my favorite skirt. I think this silhouette looks better on women who are less curvy and taller than I am. It's also a smidge too high waisted for my taste (or am I just short waisted? Do you think I am? I can't tell).

Wow, I wrote a lot! I want to send a big thank you to Sunny for this sew-along and please visit her post where you can find all the other people who participated!