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Informal survey--What are you making?

karen_morris_'s picture

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I thought it might be interesting to share what we're all making at the moment. You know, just to see what we have in common, and to inspire each other. Maybe the more ambitious of you would be willing to post photos here of things you're working on or have finished....

I'll start with a few projects I have in the works. I'm nearly finished with a basic bra for myself, made of nylon/lycra satin in violet with black details; just waiting to get the back hook closure and underwires in my size. I'm beading a little peyote-stitch vessel, 2 1/2 inches high. I love this kind of work, but I've gotten bored with it and stopped working on it lately; it's about 3/4 finished. Someday. For my 15-year-old daughter, I'm making a corset from a vintage pattern. It's white cotton twill with black Ultrasuede piping and stitching. In truth, it's not even cut out yet, but I did wash the fabric to get ready, and need to trace off the pattern.

So, what are you making?

Sue_M_Wilson's picture

(post #24356, reply #1 of 56)

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Well, inspired by reading some articles on wardrobe building in the spring (hey, a topic perhaps Threads should cover???) I am continuing along that vein. So my colours for fall are (more or less) black, red, white, charcoal grey, and plum. First 3 garments are a one-seam pant (from an old Issey Miyake pattern 1618) a white shirt from a white stretch moleskin that has a laser-cut border (leftover project from spring sewing!!) and the new Issey Miyake blouse pattern in a stretch poplin. Then some charcoal pants (New Donna Karan pattern) and some interesting shirts to co-ordinate from OOP Byron Lars patterns. And a winter coat, another Issey Miyake. And a shirt for my husband a special request after he's seen me with the "Shirtmaking" book. Hopefully I will have time to sew a couple of pajamas and nighties and a robe, too. Phew!

I'm trying something different, sewing in a 'module' of 3 garments so I do all fabric prep, alterations, cutting together. I have to sew each separately although because they are different colours. Wish me luck!!

karen_morris_'s picture

(post #24356, reply #2 of 56)

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Gosh, Sue, I'm very impressed with both your organization and your ambition! this sounds really good. i like the idea of working on 3 garments at a time.

In the past, we've goofed around with the topic of wardrobe building, and we have had an article or two on the subject (i can't quote book and pages at the moment...)

karen_morris_'s picture

(post #24356, reply #3 of 56)

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I LOVE the sound of the white stretch laser-cut moleskin!!

Ghillie_C's picture

(post #24356, reply #4 of 56)

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For the record I am waiting for some Gore Tex to arrive from Canada to make a rain coat from a Neue Mode pattern. I want to trim it with a contrasting Gore Tex and make a matching rain hat(Vogue pattern). I have already made the lining and a practice hat.

I am also tailoring a 'summer' jacket for my husband which I am trying to make following the instructions in Cabrera's book. (Difficult. Does he really leave the pocket bags between the outer fabric and the canvas?) This may be ready for next summer.

I am wondering whether to cut out a couple of simple cotton tee-shirt tops from Liberty remnants that I have, using my own pattern which I developed specially to make best use of short lengths of fabric and to sit nicely and un-fussily under suit jackets. Maybe the Gore Tex will arrive and catch me with too many projects.

Cheers,

Ghillie

Shannon_Gifford's picture

(post #24356, reply #5 of 56)

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I'm doing a fall "cleanout" wardrobe. "Cleanout" because it is intended to shorten the piles in my stash. I started by grouping all the browns, golds, olives, and rusts together and culling out the ones that didn't blend at all. The remaining fall stash was about 3 feet high. I then organized the fabric by using the ring/card system on www.patternshowcase.com (look under Tips and Techniques and go to the very bottom). Once I knew how much of each fabric was actually available, I could make pattern choices. Many of my patterns were already purchased; I supplemented by taking the ring of swatches to the store and finding appropriate patterns, closures, etc.
In the month or so since starting this, I have completed several items: a Peggy Sagers' jacket in olive silk matka with rouleau and bead trim, a Chopin shirt (Sewing Workshop) in "old gold" rayon jacquard with lattice smocking on the collar and cuffs, a dark olive wool crepe jacket with detachable fake fur collar, plus about six other pieces. I still have about 10 pieces of fabric in the "fall stash", many of them knits. However, the next piece on the list is the Nikko jacket, to be done out of a lightweight upholstery fabric and antique Bakelite buttons for a closure.
Since I am a sewing instructor, my garments have to generate comment. No minimalism here! But I want my garments to be wearable...not just attention grabbing. So I look for tasteful embellishment, usually tone-on-tone, which will look good for many years. This takes time, but most of the time is taken in finding inspiration for the garment and figuring out in my head what I want to do. I also have a love for novelty fabric, so many of my groupings were made using the novelty fabrics as a base. There is a piece of cross-dyed linen/acetate in bronze and red that I used for a lightweight coat; it shimmers when I walk and it makes me happy! As a bonus, there is enough of this fabric left to make another major piece...yippee!!

Sue_M_Wilson's picture

(post #24356, reply #6 of 56)

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Karen, can we post pics on this forum? I can then put up pics of finished projects. Shannon, I would love to see some of your garments!!! (on this or ahem, other forums. (I'm in Canada)Sue

silkscape_'s picture

(post #24356, reply #7 of 56)

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Mostly what I am making is a big mess! I have lots of piles, fabrics here, patterns there, ideas on scraps stuck to the bulletin board. I did manage to finish my red noil blouse (and have been quite happy to spread that news all over the world...that I FINISHED something!)

Seriously, I seem to only be able to manage something for me about once a month. and at that point it has to be fast. And, Shannon, if I tried to make a wardrobe out of what i have in my stash they'd lock me up for sure. However, I do have a tan faux suede skirt with drawstring hem (with a slit too!) made (August), and the blouse (September). Waiting in piles are corduroy pants in mink brown and one-seams in faux suede black. plus DD's Cleopatra costume, and perhaps a "Cruella DeVil" costume for Seven, our black lab. Think she'd be insulted?

karen_morris_'s picture

(post #24356, reply #8 of 56)

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Yes, we are able to post pix here! You use the areas labeled "attachments" and "browse", located beneath the box that we write messages in. You can browse your harddrive or a disk to find the photo you want, and attach it to your message.

So why not post a few pix of some of these interesting garments you guys are making? I'd love to see Shannon's irridescent bronze coat, and Dawn's red noil blouse. Oh, and Sue's white laser-cut moleskin blouse. Ghillie, what color is your Gore-Tex?

Ghillie_C's picture

(post #24356, reply #9 of 56)

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The Gore Tex is 'graphite' a greenish grey and also a beige for trimmings. Not exactly gaudy, but I want a raincoat I can wear over lots of different clothes. One of the problems with Gore Tex shopping is the very bright colours it is usually available in. Fine for the ski slopes, but not so suitable for street wear. I have never tried Gore Tex before.

Cheers,

Ghillie

Sue_M_Wilson's picture

(post #24356, reply #10 of 56)

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Here's my test posting. This is a picture of the new Marcy Tilton jacket pattern from Vogue. It is made from double sided Malden Mills fleece/berber combo. Easy to make, no facings, raw seams and edges. I pinked the seams to show the berber side better and made the front center panels shorter than the rest of the jacket, which is a little different than the pattern. (OK, I admit it, a mistake, but I like it anyway!!) Sue

karen_morris_'s picture

(post #24356, reply #11 of 56)

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Hey, Sue, it worked!! Thank you for launching the "virgin voyage" for photos posted on Gatherings (as far as I know). Your jacket is great. I love the pinked edges....the second color showing at the edges gives the effect of piping, creating details and emphasizing all the design lines, but without the hassle and stiffness of added piping. Very nice.

I think the front panel looks cool a little shorter...and I love people who admit that they made a mistake and turn it into a success. Now, that's REAL sewing, in my opinion.

Ghillie, your grey-green sounds like a good choice. I know what you mean about the bright colors of outerwear fabrics....not always what you want to wear every day. Not only is such a color more sporty, but it tends to dominate the outfit.

I haven't sewn with Gore-Tex either, but I've read about it quite a bit in Threads, for example in Rochelle Harper's articles. I remember that you want to seal the seams to make them waterproof. Good luck! Rochelle has written a book with TP on sewing outerwear, which may be helpful. Maybe you'll send us a picture when you're done?

Sarah_Kayla's picture

(post #24356, reply #12 of 56)

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Dear Sue -

I love the jacket. The short front panels also probably make sitting more comfortable. The colors are terrific too.

Aside from my work sewing, I have been working on thinning out my stash. I just made a leopard printed short velvet skirt ( a burda magazine pattern). I edged the top with black fake kidskin rather than making a lining. It will be part of my winter uniform with a black t, tights and clogs. I also made an orange shantung skirt using the same pattern.

I have a celery green chinese brocade with taupe & golden dragons that I have been obsessing about for the past few months. I have to get my client work done before I start on that one.

Karen - thank you for being such a gracious host here on Gatherings. you are adding new life to this site.

Sarah

karen_morris_'s picture

(post #24356, reply #13 of 56)

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Thanks, Sarah. I'm enjoying the discussions. When I was a full-time editor, I didn't feel that I had time or energy to hang out here. But now I find it very nourishing.

I need a little leopard-print velvet skirt! I was thrilled last winter to find leopard-print silk long johns for sale at TJ Maxx....i haven't worn them yet, but just enjoy seeing them on the shelf. Your celadon dragon brocade sounds delicious. (you and i must have the same coloring.) Last year, Chris Timmons (the out-going editor of Threads) was making these little chinese tops with the side closure, from a Folkwear pattern; a very flattering, tummy-skimming style. i can see your fabric in this shape, maybe with polka-dot piping to keep it from being too 'serious'. Or maybe some kind of ceremonial jacket? Let us know what you decide to do with it....

Sarah_Kayla's picture

(post #24356, reply #14 of 56)

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The thing I have been thinking about making with the brocade is what I think of as a Mom dress. I was a little kid in the early sixties when all self respecting Moms wore sheaths. I have spent most of my adult life wearing variations on long flowy hippy shmattas. Somehow this summmer Mom dresses are looking mighty attractive.
I have been wearing a dress I remember my mother buying when I was five. It is a turquoise on blue Jonathan Logan floral sheath made out of a heavy cotton. It is really comfortable (except for the impossibly high arm pits). When my mother bought it I thought it was the most beautiful dresss in the world.It was a really hot summer here so I wore it several times a week.

Whenever I wear it I wear really red lipstick because that's what my mother wore in 1966. Sometimes I go all the way and wear the dress with pumps. It is my joke for myself.

Anyway, I want the brocade dress to by my dressed up version of the Mom dress. I'm planning to make a simple kimono style jacket to wear over it out of that great sheer metallic Indian silk organza (in a pale gold). The stuff is easy to sew and looks like magic. Yes, it is slightly over the top. I have no idea when I will wear this creation, but I could always make up an occasion.

Katydid_'s picture

(post #24356, reply #15 of 56)

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I just finished making a custom horse show jacket. I started it last night at 8:30 p.m. and finished it this afternoon at 4:15 just in time for the FedEx truck to pick it up. The whole jacket is made of Plonge' leather, the body is black leather with cutout shapes of tan leather which are outlined with red leather. This jacket is loaded up with about 2,000 gold nailheads and 1,000 crystals. It has a hidden zipper down the front and a high collar, the length is just below the waist and the jacket is fully lined. It is a size 8 and will be sold in Ohio for $675. The jacket took 17 hours to make.

And tomorrow I am making...

Shannon_Gifford's picture

(post #24356, reply #16 of 56)

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Wow, Katydid. I'm going to go hide all my stuff in shame!LOL I'd love to see that jacket.....
I'm doing UFOs right now....like the shirt I promised ds for Easter last year....and the pants that are 2/3 done (for me).....and the Milano shirt that I cut out last fall.....

karen_morris_'s picture

(post #24356, reply #17 of 56)

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Sarah, the sheath sounds like a great choice for that brocade fabric; very sleek. i remember my mom always wearing those dresses, too. even the name Jonathan Logan conjures up fond memories for me. but i guess i've never felt enough like a grown up to wear a sheath. and now that my waistline is disappearing, it may never happen....

do you also remember that coral lipstick that they wore??? no wonder we wouldn't go near oranges for another 25 years. my mom looked good in the coral because of her peachy skin, but she also wore a VERY bright red, and her lips were a little dry (oh, the things we can't forget).

sorry it took me so long to answer you. i wrote you a long reply late one night, but the TP site crashed before i could send it (it was probably time for their 3am website updates). that's what i get for staying up so late.

karen_morris_'s picture

(post #24356, reply #18 of 56)

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Good grief, Katydid. i guess we're going to need to hear from you every day, just to keep up with you.

this jacket sounds fabulous. i don't suppose you took a pic of it before Fedex arrived?? we'd love to see it. how did you attach all those thousand crystals?

Ghillie_C's picture

(post #24356, reply #19 of 56)

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The Gore Tex raincoat is now finished, all I need is some rain to try it out. Sewing this fabric was a little challenging, especially as I wanted to include some 'couture' features. No fusibles no basting and no unpicking allowed as it would damage the membrane, but I managed false bindings on collar and pocket flaps, double welt pockets and welted buttonholes. I used the liquid seam sealant as the sealing tape I bought was too stiff. A walking foot was essential, and pieces of paper under the fabric when it was rubbery side down helped a lot.

Sorry I have no picture as I have no camera, which is strange considering that my husband makes digital images for a living. A case of the cobbler's children being the worst shod I am afraid.

Cheers,

Ghillie

Juliann_Schwab's picture

(post #24356, reply #20 of 56)

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Hi!
Well right now my little projects are pretty ho-hum. I'm shortening sleeves, lengthening sleeves, shortening 5 shirts, hemming 3 pairs of pants and tapering 2 pairs of pants. Oh and making a winter lining for a pea coat. However, last week I did finish a civil war costume, a little red riding hood and little bo peep. They were fun. Now I hate to sound selfish but....MY TURN!!!!! The posts have inspired me. Thanks! Have a great day!
Juliann

karen_morris_'s picture

(post #24356, reply #21 of 56)

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Juliann, I am impressed with your altering focus. I reluctantly admit that I sometimes wear pjs for months with the sleeves turned up (when it would only take 15 minutes to hem them right....) And I have a beautiful pair of wool/lycra pants from Banana Republic, purchased last spring, that I haven't even hemmed yet. Ouch.

Brenda_Ching's picture

(post #24356, reply #22 of 56)

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I wish I had more time to sew clothing; haven't had anything new in my closet in a long time. I'm sewing handbags out of cloth I discharge painted, a Sunbrella cover for a cutting machine, and a windsurfing sail.

Gita_Levin's picture

(post #24356, reply #23 of 56)

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I love to sew, knit and crochet but I never have enough time to sew as fast as I can dream up an outfit. That problem is probably shared by all of us that love to create things. Now I'm making a vest with a straight bottom and slits on the side. It buttons up the front and is a longer length than the others that I've made. The sweater that I'm knitting has a white back and crayons on the sleeves and the front. I think that I'll make it zip up the front with a hood. I already did the back and now I'm knitting the sleeves. I think that my gift list will have a pleater for hand smocking on it. I'd love to hear from people who use them. Gita

karen_morris_'s picture

(post #24356, reply #24 of 56)

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Brenda, it sounds like you need a large sewing area....i'd really have to 'clear the decks' to sew sails in my little sewing room/computer room/studio.

Maureen, when you describe your daughter's vest, i picture something like a fishing vest, with the leopard print edging all the pockets. i like it on her (in my mind's eye).

Ghillie, sometime i'd be great to see your Goretex raincoat. it sounds beautiful. would your husband be willing to take a digital image of you and stick it here on Gatherings?

Gita, i love front zippers; they have a clean, futuristic look. i've been knitting again lately (it goes in spurts, but fall always makes me feel like knitting). i just finished a spider-webby mohair/silk lace scarf for my 15 y.o. daughter, in the palest ethereal aqua; the yarn was like sewing thread, but it has lots of holes, so didn't take forever. and i'm starting a sweater for my son, a very simple pullover shape in black cotton chenille yarn that i've had in my stash for years. when you knit it tightly, it's like a firm, silky carpet. he's excited about it.

karen_morris_'s picture

(post #24356, reply #25 of 56)

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Oh, Gita, p.s. At one time we did have a smocking pleater at Threads. we all chipped in and bought one to play with. it was great--i tried pleating polartec, then put it in boiling water, so the pleats became permanent! we also pleated up thin silks and cottons, tied them very tightly, then dropped them into dye; the squished areas made beautiful designs. it's a fun toy.

Sarah_Kayla's picture

(post #24356, reply #26 of 56)

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OK- This is what is really on my plate these days.

1 - I'm preparing materials I'm using for a workshop I'm doing with a multigenerational group this afternoon.

2 - I'm attempting to applique more lettering on a family piece that is due in two weeks - the piece is in the shape of a crown - the crown is surrounded by a quote from the talmud that essentially says that "the crown of old fols is their grandchildren, the adornment of the young is their elders". four generations worth of names need to be appliqued on. I'm using hand woven Indian handwoven silk for that one.It will look terrific if it ever gets finished.

3- I have to paint 3 more tallitot before Thanksgiving when my client shows up to choose the one she wants.

4 - I have to get going on a tallit bag with quotes from Isiah calligraphed on vintage irish linen.

5 -I have to make a batch of my stock challacovers/matza covers before my next show, Dec 2.

6 - I need to get going on a custom challa cover made out of antique Hungarian lace & embroidery.

7 - I have to get slides made so I can enter a fancy show with the best customers.

8 - I have to find something dressy to wear for today's workshop that won't show sweaty armpits. The workshop is being videotaped and the head of the agency hated what I wore for part 1 of the workshop. ( I wore a white T, it is unphotogenic and in her opinion not professional enough. I am not allowed to wear black either. Just a minor aggravation) Unfortunately, my basic uniform is a fitted white t & black pants. GRRR!

Thankd for letting me vent...

sarah

Sue_M_Wilson's picture

(post #24356, reply #27 of 56)

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Well, here is my latest project. The new Issey Miyake blouse pattern from Vogue. Made from stretch poplin. The great fun is that I got to wear it to a Gala Tribute to Issey Miyake held in Toronto this week! I'm pleased with the results. Too bad you can't see the buttons. They are very special and cost a fortune from Tender Buttons in NYC. They are dyed abalone that is etched with a very tiny cross-hatch.

karen_morris_'s picture

(post #24356, reply #28 of 56)

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Sue, your blouse is beautiful. Thanks for the pic. I wish I could see a close-up of the buttons....I love Tender Buttons.

Lucky Sarah lives in NYC and can go there whenever she wants. Although you sound tooo busy, Sarah! Lots on your plate! Your talk about appliqued lettering makes me think of an article I edited years ago with a Boston-area quilter; i can't think of her name right now, but i'll go search for it.

Yes, it's Beatriz Grayson, "Quilts with Something to Say", in issue 65, pp. 57 - 61. She does such beautiful work. Do you know this article? She does applique, piecing, collage, and other methods. I love the intricate "p" that's sandwiched between two layers of mesh so it doesn't get distorted.

And you're from Quincy. Do you ever come back to this area to visit? Maybe we can meet for coffee sometime. We can wear sheath dresses. Your work sounds wonderful. I know what you mean about dressing for video--white glares, black is a 'black hole', red goes off-color, blue doesn't show up at all (at least in some formats). I end up wearing chartreuse or persimmon, when I would usually wear black or grey.

Anyway, your to-do list makes me tired....

Colleen_Writt's picture

(post #24356, reply #29 of 56)

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I have been sewing for myself for a change, getting ready for a ballroom dancing weekend at a big hotel
in upstate New York. So far I have a black chinese
print satin sheath with a deep v neck and diagonal
hem, banded with turquoise chinese print satin at the
hem and piping at neck and sleeves.Fully lined, with a side zipper. I used a New Look pattern, 6039, and love the way the long curved darts make it fit.Very slimming. Next I have a navy stretch mesh dress, open back with crossed straps, with a diagonal hemline and wide circular flounce. The top of the dress is lined in navy stretch satin, the sheer flounce is rubber stamped in a gold rose and ivy pattern. Very swirly.Then comes my black lace jacket, circular flounce at the hem and sleeves. This goes over a slim sheath dress, above the knee,
black lace over beige satin for that nearly nude look. My husband liked that one but commented it would be great in red! Today is tuesday, if I buy some more fabric today before work, maybe I can get the machine sewing done before we leave on friday
then I can finish hand sewing the hems and bias facings on the 6 hr drive to New York.My regular work is designing and making mascot costumes for sports and advertising. Lots of fake fur. This week I tailor a jacket, shirt and tie for a dog character
who looks a lot like Jake and Elwood, the Blues Brothers. Believe me, this does not take human form.
Evey part is an invention. Thursday I will spend decorating a set for the winter pledge drive at a public T.V. station. Festive but not Christmasy, since pledge starts before Thanksgiving and runs to New Years! I find it hard to get around the Christmas thing since that is all I find right now in the stores.
have fun Colleen

karen_morris_'s picture

(post #24356, reply #30 of 56)

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Wow, Colleen. I'd love to come and watch you dance, in these clothes! The black lace over beige sounds beautiful. I'll bet you're dancing tonight....