Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Summer Patriotic Dress

I've been working on a pretty summer dress (in a patriotic red and blue floral cotton voile) off and on for the last 4 or 5 weeks.  Normally a project like this wouldn't take quite so long, but this pattern has set me back a few times and I had to walk away for a bit and start fresh.

  • I saw this dress in the April 2014 issue of Burda Style Magazine (British version) and immediately went and bought fabric and supplies
  • When I went to trace the pattern I realized with horror that it was in tall sizes.  I am petite (5'2").
  • Not to be defeated, I began complex pattern alterations to shorten the bodice.  This bodice is made up of many, many pieces and this took some time to get right.

Now I am finished sewing the bodice and I'm so pleased I wanted to share a "progress report."

One of the things I love about Burda patterns is the detail.  Initially the garment may look simple, but once you get in sewing it the intricacies become more apparent.

Here's some of the details I love in this dress:

Seam lines.  Beautiful princess seam shaping in the bodice and a unique bib front construction.  Also pretty little cap sleeves.

Button loops.  Let me tell you that sewing a 1/8" wide tube of fabric and turning it inside out takes some patience but it is such a couture sort of touch.  I LOVE them.

Pleats.  Lest you think Burda ignored the back look at these beautiful pleats!

Here is a photo from the magazine of the finished dress (on a really tall girl).


Make something beautiful! (and challenging!)

Saturday, June 7, 2014

French Market Earrings

Have I mentioned that I dabble in jewelry making on occasion?  I just do simple wire-wrapped designs.  Here's a pair of earrings that I purchased as a kit from Beadaholique.  I love their old-world vintage look.  They look like little miniature lanterns you might find lining a street in the French Quarter of New Orleans.

They are simple to put together and Beadaholique includes instructions in their kit.
I used three jewelry making tools:  chain nose pliers, round nose pliers, and flush cutters.  If you have these, you can do basic wire wrapping.

For a great tutorial on making a wire-loop watch this video from Beadholique:

I put these earrings together in about 15 minutes.  Jewelry making can be a wonderful, quick creative fix.  Give it a try.
Make something beautiful!