Friday, March 29, 2013

Peter Pan collar Datura blouse

As announced on Facebook, here's my first Datura blouse!
It was made during the testing phase of the pattern, because this time around, I was lucky enough to be a tester for Deer and Doe's new collection.

I also made a Datura with the cutout neckline, but I can't show it to you because my mother fell in love with it and stole it from me (!!!) and also because the pattern was changed after I sewed it.
After taking part in this process, I can only say my respect for Eléonore is even greater: she really puts A LOT of work in her designs and takes the notes of the testers very seriously.

But anyway, back to my Datura.
Do you recognize the fabric? It's the same as one of my Banksia dresses, a lovely cotton blend that I got from Megan Nielsen. I had barely enough of it left to make this blouse, I'm so glad I never throw anything away.

This fabric was perfect for this pattern, because it has just enough drape without being too light, although it was quite difficult to photograph and a lot of the details (like darts and yoke seams) get lost in the print. That's quite nice in real life, but it's not the best to show a garment in all its details to the blogosphere, so I apologize for that.
I do plan to sew the cutout neckline version soon, but I guess you'll start seeing a lot of Datura's popping up, if you're curious to see more of this pattern.

I promise I started working out again after seeing this last photo. I can't stand my chubby arms anymore... But hey, I wanted to show you the back of the blouse, although once again, the details are pretty much lost in the print. The buttoned lower bodice is a bit like the one of my refashioned Airelle blouse and it's such a sweet detail!

The thing I love the most about this pattern is that while it's loose-fitting, it's still flattering on a curvy gal. No one wants to look pregnant!
It's also extremely versatile, as the pattern comes with two variations (three, if you omit the collar), it can be very casual or more elegant depending on your fabric choice and it can be worn as I did here or tucked in a high-waisted skirt (or shorts, or trousers...).

What else can I say about it? I can't recommend it more, if it wasn't clear from the rest of the post.
Is Datura on your sewing radar?

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Deer and Doe 2013 Spring Summer Pattern Collection

The new collection of patterns from Deer and Doe was launched yesterday and it was definitely worth the wait. Eléonore, the mind behind the brand, was kind enough to be my guest to present the new patterns and to share a few words with us on the creative process of her second collection. Enjoy!

This new collection was very interesting to work on, because my creative process was very different from the last time. 
When I created the five first patterns, Deer and Doe was like a blank canvas on which I was free to draw exactly the collection I dreamed of. To achieve the second collection, I had more constraints: I needed to be consistent in the style, but original in the designs and the techniques used (because nobody wants to feel like he owns 4 identical patterns with just small style differences, even if the style is great!). Add to this a limited amount of time due to the everyday tasks of a business… I really worked on a different level this time!

But even if it was a little bit scary at first, I finally found that these constraints were helping me to produce better, more interesting patterns! I settled on a skirt, a blouse and a dress, and worked around the idea of easy-to-wear and fast-to-sew patterns for instant summer gratification! I added some interest to each of the patterns with cute features or interesting construction, and in the end Chardon, Réglisse and Datura were born!

Chardon is a skirt specifically aimed at beginners: it's a very versatile pattern that grows with your skills! You can start with a very simple version of the skirt, and then add details like the back ribbon, the belt loops, learn how to sew an invisible zipper… the possibilities are countless!

Réglisse is a very interesting pattern for intermediate seamstresses, because it introduces a technique very few patterns use: a bias-cut bodice.
While it's quite simple to construct, the bias cut totally changes how the fabric is hanging, and creates a very flattering effect! It's also a way to have a lot of fun with stripes or plaids!

Datura is definitely the most eye-catching design in this collection. While looking quite simple, this blouse will be really fun to sew for more experienced seamstresses!
The construction ensures a perfect finish, and a lot of interesting details like cut-outs, home-made bias tape, a lined yoke… and a very flattering result even for the bustier of us :)

As always, they were thoroughly tested before the launch to insure maximum wearability and comfort. Some of the patterns changed a LOT during this phase but it was very important for me to set the bar higher than the last time :) . I hope I succeeded!

I organize my patterns by collections because I love to create an harmony and to work with the seasons, but every Deer and Doe pattern is created to work well with the other garments: you can for example pair the Chardon skirt with an Airelle blouse, and how chic would the Datura blouse be styled with skinny jeans and a Pavot jacket for spring?

Thank you so much Eléonore!
But it doesn't end here! To celebrate the launch of the new collection, Eléonore is offering a Réglisse pattern to one of you!

In order to win the pattern, you just need to leave a comment! Please leave an email address for me to get in touch.

For extra entries, you can:

✄ Tweet about the giveaway (+1)
✄ Follow Deer and Doe on Twitter(+1)
✄ Like Paunnet blog on Facebook (+1)
✄ Like Deer and Doe on Facebook (+1)

For each additional entry, please leave an extra comment below.

You have until 11:00am GMT of April 3rd to enter. Good luck!

Giveaway closed, winner announced here.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Burdastyle Magazine 04/2013

Before the review, a little public service announcement: if you're interested in following me on Facebook, I've just created a new public page. I'm keeping the old one just for my Etsy shop, so I can keep the two things separated.
I don't know why it took me so long to do it, but if you're just interested in the blog and want to be notified about new posts and have sneak peeks, you can "like" me here or using the button below.

Now, onto Burda!
I thought my subscription expired, but yesterday I found the issue in my mailbox, which means I won't have to deal with the "will I get it or not?" question. And that's good, because I was seriously undecided.
There's some good:
Stunning, actually!
The bustier-like bodice has princess seams and two small darts. I think this dress could look spectacular on every figure.
The bustier bodice is also available as a pattern, it's styled with an A-line skirt and it looks great.

Maybe not the most original design, but it's cute and summery. I love the little buttons at the back! Absolutely hate the ruffled band on the skirt.
The dog is too cute not to be mentioned.

I'm not big on maxi dresses (I don't know why, really) but this one is seriously cute. I love the necklines of both front and back, and the smocked waist makes it flattering and super comfortable at the same time.

Am I crazy to like this? I think it could be extremely cute (and a bit more elegant) without sleeves.

And this is basically it. There's a couple more nice patterns, but it's stuff I feel I've seen more than once on Burda.
But I'm not finished, because there's also some real ugliness in this issue, and I wouldn't be myself if I didn't complain about it on the Internet.

Not only is this unflattering and dated, it was made in SUEDE.
What. The. Bleep.

I don't know what this is and how is one supposed to wear it, but I hate it.

I'm sorry, many people will probably like it and many girls probably will look very sexy in it, and maybe it would look better if made in a more severe fabric, but I just find it vulgar.

UGH. A sack with ruffled sleeves and bottom.
Can you see the suicidal thoughts behind the model's sunglasses?

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Plaid Laelia blouse

2012 was the year that marked my reconciliation with France, or to be more accurate, with the French-speaking world.

You see, I've been studying French since I was 10, and while I've always been in love with the language and the culture, I've had the worst luck with my teachers. Were they Italian, French, Belgian or Swiss, they never had my sympathy. A couple of them were plain mean.
This, together with the century-long rivalry between Italy and France, irrationally reflected on my perception of French people. What can I say? It happens.

*If you're French, please don't be offended. I'm exaggerating a bit for the purpose of this post*

But then, last year, I became friend with Eléonore of Deer and Doe, I discovered some wonderful French blogs like Magali's and Gigette's and all my preconceptions disappeared!

The last blow came from the gorgeous pattern I used for this creation, the Laelia blouse pattern by Blousette Rose, a Belgian indie pattern company.
The pattern is available for both adults and children, but only in French, although the instructions are illustrated and not too difficult to understand, if you have some experience with sewing.

The design of this blouse is so unique! The front and back panels have a curved hem and they're overlapped under the armhole, but there's no side seam. There's also a bib detail and a gorgeous Peter Pan collar.
The style of this blouse is not what I usually go for because, being curvy, it's easy to look, you know...

I know it's not the most flattering garment on me, but it's so cute and comfy for a lazy, casual outfit! It's more interesting than a t-shirt, but equally as comfortable.

I used some plaid viscose for my Laelia blouse and I cut the bib and back yoke on the bias to add some interest. I should have taken more time constructing it, because a curved seam on the bias using viscose is a pain in the butt!

But overall, I'm very happy about my blouse! It's been waiting to be photograph and blogged about for over three months, so I hope it was worth the wait!

Monday, March 18, 2013

Harts Fabric giveaway winner

Drumroll, please...

Congratulations to the Garment Farmer (such a cool nickname)!
You'll be contacted shortly, so keep an eye on your email inbox!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

La Mia Boutique 03/2013

What do you know? First Burda, and now LMB comes out with a pretty decent issue.

There wasn't anything really ugly in this issue, so what you're about to see are the patterns I liked the most or found mildly interesting.

LOVE this dress, especially the little pleats of the skirt and the back neckline. The fabric they used is adorable! I'm not crazy about the cap-like sleeves (do they have a specific name? Enlighten me, please), but they can be easily avoided.
The styling is terrible (no surprise, there).

Such a cute shirt! I love the concealed button-band. The skirt is insanely short.
Again, I love the fabric choice and hate the styling, although I have a bit of a crush on this model and her makeup.

I love trench coats in general and this is no exception. I still haven't decided if I like that it hasn't a lapel, but I think I do.

You can't tell anything in the photo because they made it in black and the model doesn't really look plus size, but all in all, this looks to me like a very flattering dress with some design interest to it. What can you ask more from a plus size pattern (from any pattern, really)?
I really wish they did a better job with the photo.

Now, onto the less exciting stuff.
I don't know about the geometric detail. You need to really like. I think be really nice on a more mature woman.

Lots of interesting stuff going on here: asymmetrical hem, the shirring at the back to give more shape, the square neckline. I don't like everything about it and it's not the silhouette for me, but it's cute.

This doesn't like at all promising on the technical drawing, but once I saw it on the the model, made in a cute print, I really liked it. Again, not the silhouette for me, but it would look stunning on a tall, lean girl.

 I like the skirt, but I really don't get the leather tank top, it's so 90's.

Again, I like the skirt but the top is just a rectangle with armholes, which doesn't flatter anyone.
The styling here reaches its peak of CRAZYNESS.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

[CLOSED] Harts Fabric: 100$ coupon giveaway

Since the beginning of March, I have a wonderful new sponsor*: Harts Fabric!
When I was contacted by them, we spoke about doing a giveaway and I suggested a pattern as prize, but guess what? They offered a 100$ coupon for you guys!

The winner will be spoilt for choice, as this shop has everything you might wish for. I was particularly attracted by the Decades of Style patterns, vintage reproduction patterns that I'm itching to try out.

To enter the giveaway, you need to be following my blog (via email or via rss reader) and leave a comment telling me what would be the first thing you'd spend your coupon on. Please leave an email address for me to get in touch.

For extra entries, you can:

✄ Tweet about it (+1)
✄ Like Harts Fabric on Facebook (+1)

For each additional entry, please leave an extra comment below.

The giveaway ends on March 17, 11:00am GMT. Good luck!


Oh, and I didn't forget about the By Hand London giveaway. The winners are:

✄ Gwendolyn for the Elisalex dress pattern
✄ Pennie for the Charlotte skirt pattern

You're being contacted as this post is published, so please check your email!

*[If you're interested in sponsoring me, here is all the info.]

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Inspiration: Lazzari SS2013

I'm a huge fan of this Italian brand, and their latest collection didn't let me down. I mean, cat-shaped pockets and cat prints. Need I say more?


Saturday, March 2, 2013

Burdastyle Magazine 03/2013

Very, very late, but here it is!

It looks like Burda FINALLY released a juicy issue. It is just my impression or spring issues are usually a little better than the rest?

But before we get to the nice stuff, let's get our hands dirty with some unavoidable ugliness:

Sorry, I had to include this. It made me laugh so hard.
Ugh, terrible.

Moving on and up a little bit, there a couple questionable patterns:
I want to like these blouses, but I just can't. I don't understand if it's because of fabric choices and styling, but they look so awkward to me!
It's so weird, the plus size patterns are usually classic and flattering design... Not really this month.

Another questionable pattern, meaning: I can't decide if it's different and interesting or plain weird. Although I'll take a pattern like this over the first one of this post any time.

Now... Are you ready for the good stuff? There's a lot of it!

Favorite pattern of this month. There's also a shorter version made in a non-sheer fabric that looks more casual and it's equally beautiful, but the gown is prettier to look at.
Of course, this is not a boob-friendly dress. I have a C cup and I can't go braless (I feel too self-conscious, I just can't) so I'm crying a little bit.

Classic. Understated. Great blank canvas for a number of variations. Love it!

The photo sucks, but this is so cute! Very flattering, and feminine with a touch of retro.

Very cute! The gathering at the center front adds interest and femininity.
For once, J'ADORE the styling of the photo.

Vintage pattern of the month.
If you have the right combination of fabric and lace trim, this could look extremely sweet.

This looks very similar to the princess seam dress above, but I love the idea of the contrast trim.

Gorgeous lines! Not that you can tell shit from that terrible photo.

Again, cute and retro. Not the dress for me, but this might look spectacular on a petite girl.

Are you happy?
This was the last issue in my subscription, and I think I would have gone and buy it if hadn't received it. What about you?bur