Vintage Wool Crepe Dress

Y’all. Can we talk about wool crepe for a minute? I just love this stuff to tiny threadbare pieces and I wish everything I made had a wool crepe option. I love the spongy texture, the glorious drape, the magical body-temperature-regularity (yay, wool!), and the COLORS. Truly, everyone should have at least one experience rolling around in a uncut length of wool crepe. Especially if it is a jewel-toned wool crepe. Ooh la la. For my first Mood Sewing Network project, I wanted that experience to include wool crepe. I have a beautiful 1940s Simplicity pattern that I knew would […]

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Sequin Gown

I started the New Year generous in spirit by making a dress for my daughter. It’s been over 15 years since I have heard “Will you make me a dress, Mom? ” and she wasn’t referring to a Children’s Corner or Martha Pullen pattern anymore. Mimi wanted a formal dress. Not only did I make a dress for Mimi, but I made a dress for Mimi with my Mood Fabrics allowance. Bought at Mood NYC: champagne gold sequin fabric and matching china silk for lining. Due to the holiday season we did not decide on the exact pattern until the […]

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Ponte Knit and Stud Trim Dress

Every time I visit the Mood NYC, I stroll by the ponte aisle and lately I haven’t been disappointed.  I always find something new and unusual there. When I found this fabric, which I’m calling a laminated ponte, I knew immediately that I wanted to make a dress with it using Butterick 5821. Now the pattern envelope isn’t that inviting but the line drawings highlight a dress with so much potential.  I knew the laminated ponte and a stud trim that I picked up from Mood’s trim department would yield an amazing dress. As usual there were quite a few […]

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A Wintry Knit Bloom

On the day after Christmas, in the land of Ruggy’s birth, it snowed.  And snowed, and snowed.  So naturally I jumped into my second version of By Hand London’s Elisalex Dress and ran outside to play. It seemed the perfect backdrop for Betsey Johnson’s technicolor print.  As usual I was in the jersey aisle at Mood, and I fell in love and snagged a yard of this beauty.  The weight is perfection, the colors are edible.  My intention was to make more leggings.  However, when I pulled out my ginghers, the bright happy flowers screamed OONA!  Are you really going […]

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Blue Marine Sweater Dress

I’m continuing my current passion for sweater knits in this Burda sheath dress from September 2012. While I’m still tracing mine from the magazine (tears), you can download it for a mere $5.40 from the BurdaStyle website. This marine blue knit from Mood Fabrics NYC was purchased in the same bundle as the autumnal pullover I just completed. The knit is incredibly soft. I love the way the colors meld in this knit. I originally sewed this dress to wear to a Hanukkah party and have pulled it out a few times for work since then. Since the pattern uses […]

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Bias-cut Tweed Dress

Tweed is one of the nicest and easiest fabrics to sew, in my opinion. Did you know that the origin of tweed is said to be the Tweed River that flows along the border between England and Scotland? Yet apparently, the name of the fabric is a result of a clerical error when tweel (old name for tweed  for its characteristic 2×2 twill weave) was misspelled as tweed. Anyway, it is a perfect wool fabric for beginners. It doesn’t distort easily, reacts very well to steam and heat, easy to sew, easy to cut, easy to hide mistakes, it is reversible, durable, and, and, […]

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Hanging in the Stretch Aisle

I wrote a bit about this dress last week on my blog; it was giving me fever and I was not happy. Mainly, I’m mad at myself. I did everything I could to second guess this pattern, the Elisalex Dress from By Hand London. I made my usual modifications on the fly, thinking I’d head problems off at the pass. Turns out, this baby fit me right out of the exceedingly lovely box. (I’m talking about the packaging, folks, soon to be drooled over on my blog–these patterns are something you’ll want to display in your room, totally bookshelf worthy.) […]

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Silk Brocade Quilted Jacket

Where do you look for inspiration when you create your garments? If you’re like me you look to the runway each season, to see what ideas you can borrow or knock off. I loved, loved, loved Proenza Schouler’s Fall 2012 collection, maybe because it relied heavily on brocade (and you know what a brocade addict I am). I already had some orange silk brocade from Mood NYC in my stash as a starting point, and I knew I wanted to make a quilted jacket. One of McCalls’ newer patterns, 6644, was designed to be used for quilted fabrics and I […]

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Watercolor, Feathers, and a Drop-Waist Dress

Jamie Lau, one of the authors of BurdaStyle’s newest book Sewing Vintage Modern, wrote to ask me if I’d make a dress from her book. Of course I jumped at the opportunity, even though at that point I only knew that the patterns were classic designs from different eras in the 20th century. Jamie explained that my choices of patterns were a 1920s drop-waist dress, a 1940s men’s shirt, a 1950s gathered-waist dress, or a 1960s stirrup pant; she also let me know that I was free to modify the patterns as I wished. I ended up choosing the drop-waist […]

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