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August 29, 2007

experimenting with textures

scrumptious silk and worn linen

when we moved last year, i was forced to sort through my clothing. i donated most of the ones i rarely worn and some, threw away without even thinking. but there were a few i just couldn't part with, regardless how unflattering the fashion was. i saved three pairs of pants, thinking that one day, i would make something out of them.

the pinstripe linen pants from country road was the very first pair of "grown up" pants i ever owned. it was with me when i first fell in love, fell out of love; it was with me when i first experienced independence and traveled with me to many places. the beautiful summer linen held up so well with years of dry cleaning (before i realized that linen can be hand wash), and i just couldn't give it away.

it is strange how a piece of clothing holds all these sentiments that it became part of you.

lately, i was heavily inspired by six.5 stitches' work. and i was lucky enough to have the opportunity to get to know her a little bit through our little swap a while ago. the way she works with different types of textures and fibers is so inspiring to me, that i immediately realized what to do with my pinstripe linen pants.

when i brought this idea to my husband, asking what would work with linen, he suggested satin.

two days later, i came home with the most beautiful, scrumptious midnight blue silk satin i have ever seen. it looks even better next to my linen pants.

the project is almost done, but i just couldn't wait to blog about it.

August 27, 2007

keep it raw

raw t-shirt

pattern: my own, inspired by japanese craft book
difficulty (1-5): 2
pattern size: medium
fabric: approx. 1yd of cotton knits

my first try with knits was a disaster! i wanted to make a striped slip to wear to the pool, as a cover up. but too cheap to get one for $80 or so ridiculously high priced ones. i bought three yards of black striped knits for $7/yard. thinking i can use it as an experiment.

the cutting and sewing were straightforward. matching up the stripes was not difficult. i failed to use the appropriate needle for my machine and was just using the straight stitch, which worked out to be okay. until i was ready to add bias binding.

at that time i was unaware of bias binding means bias cut strips. needless to say the project failed badly, i managed to save the skirt part of the dress, added an elastic band, and wear it as a skirt. which can be cute for lounging around.

and all that, happened last summer.

i liked to believe that my sewing skill has since then improved! and couple weekends ago, i pulled out my stripe knits again, this time i wanted to make a t-shirt.

inspired by the japanese craft book, i cut out a very basic pattern, modified the necklines, and used stretched stitch to sew up this little tee in no time. i intentionally kept all the edges raw. it did not fray much at all. of course, i had studied some of those pricey tees from juicey couture and alike, raw edges are fashionably acceptable!

this is my raw t-shirt. and i love it.

August 13, 2007

nantucket dress

nantucket dress with lobsters

pattern: based on mccalls 2213
difficulty (1-5): 2
pattern size: large
fabric: approx. 1yd of linen/rayon fabrics with lobsters. little bits of kaffe fassett's light yellow cotton for lining, two buttons.

last week was a wild one. that heat, the worse i have experienced. and got stuck in newark airport did not help, either. we also had friends from out of town staying with us over the weekend. friday night's dinner somehow was mixed with several different types of reds and whites. i felt like half drowning all day saturday.

at least i made this little nantucket dress for my sister's upcoming baby, using fabrics from my previous projects. and the pattern was roughly based on mccall's pattern. the bodice lining was not that nicely done, which i may have to improve upon by tacking the sides down. it was nonetheless a cute dress for a baby girl.


and finally, i created a label of my blog. with stamps and some linen tape (i was inspired heavily by alison's version). i was going to get a set of gocco, which i still might. but for now, i think stamping is fulfilling the need of a personalized label. and really, every one is going to be slightly different as i am stamping them one character at a time.

and you know, the best part of stamping, i can even give out hints of what's in the bag (presents to an old friend in jersey).