2007 Project Roundup

November 7, 2007

I wanted to post a few pics of items that I have actually sewn this year.  Because thus far, on the Make It Sew blog, I haven’t shown any actual sewing.

So let’s start with what I call the Versailles Dress named because I made it especially to wear to Versailles when I was in Europe this summer.  And it was perfect for the that day.

Versailles Dress

My trip to Versailles corresponded with a Paris heat wave so the sleeveless and loose-fitting skirt was perfect.  The original pattern was Vogue 8063.  And I think that the dress turned out pretty well!


Happy Days Are Here Again!

October 31, 2007

I’ve been sporadically buying vintage patterns from various sites on the net for the past year.  But yesterday was the big score. 

 I bought 100 patterns that date from the 1940s to the 1970s via an E-bay auction.  I only have a picture of a few of them, but I look at this more as a treasure hunt.  When I receive the patterns, I will post more pictures but below is the picture that went with the auction.


London Fashion Week

September 20, 2007

Perhaps one shouldn’t spend a very stressful day at work and then blog about fashion. One tends to be very cynical. At least this one does. So, I am starting my posts about London Fashion Week giggling at certain trends.

This one to be exact.

Besides the fact she was paid oodles of money to walk down the runway wearing it, how did the model keep a straight face when the designer showed her the dress? And what kind of bird are those from.

Now this number from John Rocha also uses feathers.

If I were wearing that dress, I would be fighting the urge to flap my arms up and down and start squaking like a chicken. I don’t think that was the designer’s intent. As for intent, I can’t figure this one out/

It’s by Bora Aksu.

Back to juvenile impulses… I am not sure that if I saw this Marios Schwab number on someone I could resist the temptation of whispering to her “Pssst…you’re right boob has fallen and can’t get up.” Okay maybe not that, but doesn’t she look uneven?

Ninja Chic by Louise Golden

A Jane Wheeler it is not! Giles could only hope to be Jane Wheeler.

Central St Martins adopted the linebacker-padding-under-the-sweater look for Spring.

Please keep in mind that most of the time I am a positive person. And I am positive there is nothing I like about the above design by Roksanda Ilincic,

And to wrap it up, here’s a combination of looks that don’t work well

Top 10 Fashion Week

September 13, 2007

After all the Fashion Week hoopla, I decided to take a look at most of the designers to see what was out there that I might actually wear.   Originally this post was going to be my top 10 choices of fashion week, but I think I went over that number.

First off, I did not look at every item of clothing shown at Fashion Week.  That wasn’t going to fit into my time parameter.  And when I say “clothes that I would wear”, let’s pretend that I would have the money to buy these clothes.  In reality, my finances don’t come close. 

Aside from that my criteria starts with clothes thatI could wear to work.  My workplace is casual…not business casual, but casual.  Clothing runs the gammit from business suit to shorts and T-shirt.  During the spring and summer, I do try to wear a dress mainly because I find them comfortable.  However, my daily commute involved my walking 4 miles, so I need to be able to move in my clothing. 

These two items were from Costello Tagliapietra.  The colors and styles lend themselves to blending with a variety of accessories.  The fabric in both cases is knit which is very comfortable.  And neither one of them is so fashion forward that I would look out of place in an office.

Costello Tagliapietra

This dress is from Alexandre Herchcovitch’s collection.  I am sure you’re now thinking “but I thought you wanted clothes you could wear to work!”  But depending on what fabric this dress is made of, I could wear this to work.  Thank my very diverse workplace.

This little number below is from Elie Tahari.  Since I can’t tell exactly what the fabric is, I am going to say that it is made of some sort of knit or jersey which, again, is comfortable.  The outfit looks distinctive and would be perfect for spring in Chicago where you get a lot of 60 degree days.

Elie Tahari

Of all the shows that I checked out, I loved Naem Khan’s the best.  This dress is a great print…not laden with flowers, but in a beautiful color.  I would probably pick different shoes to go with it, but I love this dress.  It might be my favorite item of the entire Fashion Week.

Naem Khan

This outfit makes the list because of the top/jacket.  I love it!  There are so many ways you could wear it and again, it would be perfect for a Chicago spring.  Thank you VPL for including it in your collection.


I would LOVE to wear this outfit to work sans hat.  Not a big fan of the hat.  But the belt and the jacket together are great.  Pants are in that shiny fabric which is really “in” right now.  This is why Oscar de la Renta is the man!

Oscar de la Renta

Donna Karan is another big name in the American fashion industry.  This dress gives the wearer so many possibilities.  Perfect for a casual workplace in the summer OR for dinner out OR for walking the kids to the park.  It’s just a really versatile piece of clothing.

Donna Karan

Tuleh did the following two items.  Now I do think the jacket over the dress in the picture below is a bit formal for my work.  But if it were bedazzled and was a bit plainer, this would be perfect to throw on in the spring.  Spring mornings can be chilly, but by the afternoon, it can be 80 degrees and this outfit would really work on those kind of days.


I am partial to tailored jackets, so when I saw this combo, I knew it was going to make my list.  Granted, I would probably wear different shoes thanks to my 4 mile hike, but doesn’t this just look sharp and crisp!

When I was flipping through the Fashion Week photos, I came across Nicole Miller and there were a lot of great items in her show.  But this was my favorite.  I’m guessing the fabric is a knit and the colors make the dress conservative enough for a workplace.  But you could see how changing the colors would make the dress into something suitable for a completely different environment.  But for me and for work…I would love this one!

Nicole Miller

Fashion Week

September 13, 2007

Oh my darling blog, how I have missed thee. But at least I am back on track and can do some writing today. And since today is the last day of Fashion Week, I decided to take a gander at what we will be wearing next Spring. Specifically, I’ve looked at the coverage for items that women of a certain age or certain size could wear.

I think this is a perfect example…

Tommy Hilfiger

Nothing about that outfit screams 22-year-old and even if you are heavier, it would still be a great choice. This trench is another great item…

Black Trench

And there you have it, 2 looks out of the 47 trotted out on the runway.

Sewing weekend coming up

August 18, 2007

I got home from a very stressful day at work to find that fabric I ordered just arrived!


 My oldest daughter is fascinated with all things Irish.  So when I saw this fabric, I immediately thought of a St. Patrick’s Day dress for her.  I ordered enough fabric to make a dress for each of my daughters and I am pondering using View A of this pattern.


I would use the shamrock fabric for the dress and then a solid light or dark green for the jacket.  It would be great if I could find a yellow to match the background color, but that would take a lot of luck.  At least Hancock’s is having a sale this weekend so perhaps I will get the time to stop by and begin my quest.

Spawning ideas

August 13, 2007

Sometimes I get sewing ideas for a particular pattern from another pattern.  Below is Simplicity 3993 for sale on Ebay.  View 2 looks pretty dressy with the glamorous button and the jaunty sash and elegant gloves.


It reminded me of Butterick 9323 which I happen to have sitting amongst my vintage collection.  When I got it as part of a group of patterns, I thought the young miss in View A looked as if she were ready to work on an early airline back when she would have been called a stewardess. 

But I could alter View C to make it very much like View 2 on the Simplicity pattern.  A fancy button and elegant fabric is all it would take to dress it up quite a bit.  Not that I have that many formal occasions, but one can dream!

The No-Muu

August 10, 2007

Recently there was a discussion on Erin’s A Dress A Day blog about wearing a dress around the house.  Not a housecoat or muumuu. A pretty dress still allows the wearer to chase children around or to wield a vacuum or to type entries into her blog.  I could identify with this sentiment, so I perused my small but growing stash of vintage patterns for a suitable candidate.  I came up with the dress on the right…


 The No-Muu 

I call it my no-muu.  It’s a cute little number from the sixties.  It doesn’t have pockets like Erin’s does, but looked as if it could fit the criteria of a no-muu, at least for summer.  Thanks to my also small, but growing collection of fabric, I had something in my stash that world work for a wearable muslin. 

I have to hem it tonight, but tomorrow will be my trial run of the no-muu.  We’re planning on taking the kids to the peach orchard and getting the pre-picked bushel.  I’ll be the one in the black no-muu.

Dream Project

August 9, 2007

Sometimes a sewing project festers and grows in your mind until you decide to do something about it.  The dress on the left occupied my thoughts for some time now.

Simplicity 1594

Leaving the cuffs off, I think it could be dressy, yet not to stuffy.  It is a vintage pattern that dates from the ’30s and I’ve been pondering the color combinations I could use.  I found some eggplant wool crepe online for the main color, but I hesitate to pick that color because I’d need shoes to go with it.

My next idea was to make the dress in a dark brown and use a taupe or pink for the neck/scarf.  But then I seized on the idea of using an animal print.  Animal prints are in and it would make the dress current.   Maybe I could make the dress in black and use a zebra or cheetah print.

Does anyone out there in Internet-land have suggestions for other combinations OR fabric sources for the animal print fabric?