Saturday, January 28, 2012

Vogue 2950 Oscar de la Renta

Here is Oscar de la Renta's lovely jacket, skirt and belt.  The jacket is unlined with covered shoulder pads, front-fly button closure and two-piece lined sleeves.  Belt with self bow and mid-knee, raised waistline vented skirt.  I used a lightweight silk\linen tweed in a soft plaid because it works for both winter and summer here in Southern California.  This pattern was a joy to work with, the pieces went together easily and the directions were well written with enough couture touches to create a beautiful suit that doesn't take too much time to complete.  I love the cut of the jacket, it has just enough shape to flatter while keeping a "Chanel-like" look when not belted.  I think this suit has a nice, elegant and sophisticated look.

A statement without accessories

You can't see the vent at the back of the skirt, but it lays nicely.

fly front.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Going to a Claire Shaeffer Class!

If you haven't heard of Claire Shaeffer, you probably aren't making clothes.  She designs couture patterns for Vogue Pattern, writes for Threads and Vogue Patterns Magazine and she gives 5 day couture sewing classes in Palm Springs.  I'm taking the Chanel jacket class and will learn many techniques that I hope will take my skills to another level.  I sometimes get a little frustrated with collars, sleeves and some of the details that take a garment from good to great.  Hence, the CS class.  I'll review the class and post photos of the 1/2 Chanel jacket that we will be working on.   I hope I do a good job, wish me luck!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Vogue 1268 Finis!

The pattern describes it as "a very loose fitting, lined, wrap dress with a pleated blouson bodice, shaped front hemline and fold-back cuffs."

My description: "Ultrasuede blouson wrap coatdress."  If it were made of a light suede or chamois, I could wear this as a dress, but the Ultrasuede is a medium weight and not supple enough for the movement a "dress" requires.  Claire Schaffer says to wash the ultrasuede first, but it was expensive and I was afraid to try since the fabric clearly stated to dry clean only.

Instructions:  This is the first time I had a problem with a Guy Laroche pattern.  First, I did not interface the right front of the garment.  After many tests, I found it made the front too stiff for the soft fall that the blouson needs.  Don't interface the bodice right front unless you like it to stand away from your body!  There were a couple of places where the instructions could have been more explicit.  I had to tack the lining in by hand, their directions would have pulled the bodice seam allowance forward, I didn't want that.  Also, it's very difficult to get a hand needle through two layers of this material...ouch!  I machine top-stitched the cuffs.  You can forget about marking the snaps, I had to move the dress around a bit before I found that sweet spot that gives the most flattering shape, I imagine it will be a little different on everyone.  I cut the hem carefully as I noticed that the skirt is not hemmed, I like that.

I had my doubts about this as I constructed and fitted, it seemed to be unflattering until the very end, then, wow!  It turns out to be a very fresh, cute, kind of sexy, and very stylish little coatdress.

I'm taking a business trip to San Francisco and will wear it with a black turtleneck shell, black tights and black boots.  I guess I'll be taking those off for TSA :(.

I love the pattern, but won't make it again, it's a strong statement and one is enough.  I can see this style in a lightweight double knit, either in black, or a vibrant blue.  My advice is to use the pattern as a guide,  your hands and intuition will smooth all the pieces to fit your body just right.