Personal Sewing Challenge – 5th Day

Originally posted on Deborah Gyug:

What I would like to see done for the day is:  sew the two pairs of pants.  The shirtwaist dress will have to wait until later due to incoming client work.

Black fabric….and both sides appear to look the same….but are not the same.  Up close there appears to be little difference.  However to be safe I treat all textiles as though they have a dye lot and I do not want to mix up the right side from the wrong…..and I have a trick that is better than my eye for this.

I use a photo magnifier.  I have cut the cloth with right sides together – but if I confuse the order of the pieces I can use this handy tool to make sure that I construct the garments consistently throughout.

a magnifier keeps the right side sorted out from the wrong side a magnifier keeps the right side sorted out from the wrong side

10:15am – iron on, all…

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Personal Sewing Challenge – Day 3

Originally posted on Deborah Gyug:


Time for the pattern for the second part of the challenge – 2 pair of casual sport pants.  I have my pattern from 2011 for a sport pant that was based (but changed significantly) from a pant that I had purchased years before that and then worn to shreds (literally).

The pattern has many pieces and uses the stretch quotient of the cloth to great advantage.  The seams of the pants are manipulated so that they accommodate activities such as cycling or hiking.  The stretch pant has roomy pockets and an elasticized back waist…..perfect sport pant for me.  In fact I wore a pair of the 2011 version for a 13 km walking jaunt just this very fine west coast morning.    And there shooting from the floor of the forest wetlands….skunk cabbage…..first time spotted for 2015.  Spring IS on its way.

the pieces 'look' strange but really work well for sporty active days the pieces ‘look’ strange but really…

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Personal Sewing Challenge Day 2

Originally posted on Deborah Gyug:

I’m calling this a challenge because challenges of any sort seem to be ‘in’ and because the idea of “challenged” to do anything just carries a mystique and seems to result in compulsion to perform!

It’s a perfect sunny day here on the west coast but compulsion has me in the workshop getting ready to cut out my new clothes.

The purchased fabrics are all washed and I have gathered the related notions and threads. I have to select patterns and begin some cutting.

I have a large…..huge!….stash of patterns.  The collection if measured in linear feet with the patterns stacked like books on a shelf it is a bit more than 35 feet.  I managed to drastically purge the pattern file a few years ago but clearly further editing is required.  Some of these patterns go back to the beginning of my sewing days..(the 70’s) and many are patterns…

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Costume People:

We thought this was a pretty cool perspective, and had to share it!

Originally posted on Silver Stitches:


While I was researching corsets on the internet, I inevitably came across the practice of tight-lacing, aka corset training, aka waist training. It has occurred to me that tight-lacing could be classified in the same category as anorexia.

There isn’t any problem with using a corset to help give your waist a little bit of definition — that’s along the lines of dieting to shed a few pounds, or wearing makeup, and fits within the range of normal behavior. However, tight-lacers seem to be obsessed with the waist measurement, and forget that their waists are part of a whole. What makes bodies attractive are the hips-waist-bust ratios, and when the waists are proportionately too small, it leaves people feeling rather repulsed as they wonder if they’ve stumbled into a Cirque du Freak show.


There doesn’t seem to be any sort of “Stop” signal in their minds — they keep thinking…

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How to stay on a roll…

Costume People:

This is Leslie’s blog, so, thought we’d share it on here since we can probably all relate to this problem.

Originally posted on buggy bag® blog:

I’ve been on a roll for quite some time now.  I’m not even sure how long it’s been… since pilot season I guess.  That would be last spring.  In my estimation, I’ve had approximately 11 days off since then. Today is not supposed to be one of them and I’ll likely start working right after I’m finished writing this, but, for now, I’m calling it a day off.

What does a person who works that many hours do on a day off? Glad you asked. 

I’m one of those crazy seamstresses who likes to use a rolling office chair at the machines. That way I can roll back and forth between machines to save time. It’s all about saving time you see. So, when the rolling begins to become more like work, I know I have to take some action and do some cleaning. Don’t get me wrong… I sweep…

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My Mom…the Hooker

Originally posted on buggy bag® blog:

I think I was in grade five when I got frost bite on my toes while skiing at Monte Ste. Anne in Quebec.  What I do know is that I’ve had cold feet ever since.

Yeah, yeah you’re probably thinking, “Why does she always have to make these posts about herself? Get to the story already.”   … because it’s MY blog…and I’m getting to it…ok?

What’s the one thing in my closet I can’t live without? My sock drawer! Bet you didn’t see that one coming.  My sock drawer has the most amazing collection of hand knitted wool socks you can possibly imagine. Although I love ‘open toe’ season, I also really love my wool socks. Every time I go anywhere that I have to take my shoes off I immediately get compliments on my socks. I’m not kidding you! It happens ALL the time. And for good reason. I have memorable socks.My socks are…

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A New Custom Cashmere Coat for Alison

A lovely woman named Alison has been cutting and colouring my hair for the past 8 years.  She has seen me through the last of my brunette days.  Through the stainless steel fresh head of incredibly short hair post-chemotherapy.  She also trimmed and styled my wig during ‘that’ time.  I now sport a shoulder length sort of platinum grey blond and I like it a lot!

She’s a marvelously stylish woman and it is always a pleasure to see her.   It is fun to catch up and as we share a similar sense of humour we laugh plenty.

Just before Christmas Alison commissioned a Cashmere Coat for herself and here is a closeup of some of the details.

Alison's Custom Cashmere Coatmere Coat

We started with a conversation and a sketch.  I made two mock-ups in order to get the collar ‘just so’.  It stands nicely and frames her face.  It is 3/4 length with an inverted pleat and slit at the center back.  The sleeve tapers at the forearm and slightly flares again over the hands.  She wanted a “really wearable” coat that would last.

Alison's Cashmere Coat 2

The stats:     ‘Best Quality’ Black Cashmere, Real Corozo (Tagua) Nut Buttons, Lambskin bound buttonholes, Black Patent Leather (real leather)  pinked trims set in,  fully lined in crepe back polyester satin.  Hair canvas and assorted fusibles, tapes, and lambswool used for the tailoring.

Alison has been wearing her new coat for the past month and still loves it.  Working with a custom client can be a real pleasure.  Thank you for the patronage Alison!


Posted in Buttons, Custom Clothing, Custom Sewing, Cutting, Fashion, Patternmaking, Patternmaking, Projects, Sewing | Tagged , , , , , , , | 4 Comments