Saturday, 31 March 2012

A Very Expensive Nightgown !!!

No, seriously, I call it that because it is made with nightgowns and PJ's.  In fact, she is a mock-up for a MUCH BETTER prom t-shirt prom dress (I hope...).

So here is where I am at right now.

1- I have cut and sewn my bodice lining
2- I have installed boning (oh boy, what an experience...)
3- I have attached the bodice to the skirt
4- I have sewn (: / ) the zipper...

What I have learned:

1- I have to interface t-shirt fabric because it moves and stretches (duh...)
2- I am buying simple boning and creating a casing MYSELF (none of that rapid-sewn stuff...)
3- My ruffles are VERY IRREGULAR (ugh...)  T-shirt fabric is heavy and it is better to use two colors of thread to find it to ruffle.
4- I have to interface tshirt fabric because it moves and the zipper is CROOKED !!!

So here are some pictures of the disaster mock-up dress:

Front view (I "made my hair up" for the occasion... (the everpresent dragonfly)

You can see the boning is not correctly installed but I can't put my finger on it...  I might have installed it on the wrong curve sense (it this makes any sense...).  You can also see to the right that my piece of fabric was not long enough...  If you can believe it, there is a crinoline under this !!!  Tshirt fabric is SO heavy !  I want to make a hoop skirt for the real one to pouf it up.  We'll see about that...

Here are some not so flattering pics... I hesitated posting them but they are part of the process.  Hopefully the real end result will be better...

Back view (oh my, SO not flattering...)

You can't see the puckering of the zipper from this angle but it PUCKERS !

Another angle:

You can see it a little better here...  It definitely needs interfacing.  Stiff one !

For this dress, I still need to cut the length to the knee (I think...) and make a stiffer hoopskirt.  OK, so I think I will now turn to something a bit easier, like a nice bag !!!  

So I learned it is SO important to make a mock-up (even if it takes some time) to figure out what the mistakes you can make are and NOT make them on the real deal !  Learning curve everyone :)

So until the next posting (which should be very soon)...

Peace !


Friday, 30 March 2012

A red cap for the fashion show

So I really like to create things but I don't have formal training in pattern drafting.  Therefore, I use things that fit me well and draw the patterns from them.
J'aime bien créer mais je n'ai pas de formation en dessin de patron.  Donc, j'utilise des choses qui me font bien et j'en tire les patrons.

My latest is a newsboy cap I wanted to make to wear with my cute tie skirt.  Since my tie skirt is in red tones, I thought I would use an old pair of (too-tight) cords to make a cute newsboy cap.  I got a newsboy cap at Value Village that I thought was cute for 1.50$:
Ma dernière création est une casquette que je veux montrer avec ma jupe-cravates.  Comme ma jupe est dans les tons de rouge, j'ai pensé utiliser une vieille paire de corduroy (trop serrés) pour en faire une jolie casquette.  J'ai acheté une casquette au Village des valeurs que je trouvais jolie pour 1.50$:

Then, I proceeded to rip the seams out and I ended up with this:
J'ai donc décousu tous les morceaux et voici ce que j'ai obtenu:

The black pieces are the lining.  So once I had the pieces cut up, I ironed them and traced them on paper and then on my red cord.  I started to make the cap but it is pretty late and I did not buy the plastic to make the "brim" (?)...  So I thought "Why not, NOT put a brim ?  It is a bit different, exactly what I needed to separate my look.  I had some rust lining in my stash.  So here is the result.
Les morceaux noirs sont la doublure.  Une fois que les pièces étaient décousues, je les ai repassées et tracées sur du papier et ensuite, coupées dans le corduroy rouge.  Je voulais faire la casquette mais comme il est tard et que je n'ai pas de plastique pour faire la palette, j'ai pensé "Pourquoi ne PAS mettre une palette ?"  C'est différent, en plein ce dont j'ai besoin pour me démarquer du lot.  J'avais un morceau de doublure dans mes retailles.  Voici donc mon résultat:


The little "button" is something I whipped up on a whim (a button inside a yoyo).  I really like it and I'm pretty sure it will be ADORABLE with my tie skirt outfit.
Le petit "bouton" sur le dessus, je l'ai fait sur un coup de tête (un bouton dans un yoyo).  J'aime bien ce petit chapeau et je suis certaine qu'il sera ADORABLE avec ma jupe-cravates.

I took a picture wearing it but as it is pretty late, I think I will wait to have it taken by someone else...
J'ai pris une photo avec le chapeau sur la tête mais, comme il est tard, ce n'est pas très réussi alors je vais attendre que quelqu'un arrive pour la prendre.

So thanks for reading and I'll post something else soon.
Merci d'être passé et je vais afficher quelque chose bientôt.



Saturday, 24 March 2012

Hoodie fail... (Un kangourou raté...)

Hey all,
Bonjour à tous !

I decided to translate my bolg for my French-speaking friends.
J'ai décidé de traduire mon blog pour mes amie-s francophones.

I am working on my fashion show clothes but I think I'm going to have to re-think my plan...
Je suis en train de préparer mes vêtements de défilé mais je crois que je dois re-penser mon plan...

As you might have noticed, I'm into COLOURS !!!  I like bold and bright colors and I work in reconsrtuction of t-shirts.  So, as I already have a colourful pair of leggings, I thought I would make a colourful hoodie, not necessarily to match but in staying with the theme.  So I took an already existing hoodie pattern:
Comme vous avez pu le constater, j'adore les COULEURS !!!  J'aime les couleurs vives et saturées et je travaille en reconstructions de t-shirts.  Comme j'ai déjà fait des leggings plein de couleurs, j'ai pensé faire un joli kangourou coloré, pas nécessairement pour aller avec les leggings mais pour rester dans le thème.  Alors, j'ai pris un patron que j'avais déjà:

I had to do some alterations, like finishing seams, as this pattern turns the edges on the outside !!!  I created a design with bright colours:
J'ai dû faire quelques modifications, comme finir les coutures puisque ce patron fait seulement tourner les bords vers l'extérieur sans les finir !!!  J'ai créé un design avec des couleurs vives:

I traced my size on pattern paper and then once more on newspaper to be able to create pieces. 
J'ai tracé la taille de patron sur un papier mince et un autre sur du papier circulaire pour pouvoir couper les morceaux:

2 important things to remember:
2 choses importantes à savoir:

1- Keep the t-shirt fabric on the "grain" (you can see the arrows on my pattern pieces) to keep the stretch
1- Garder le t-shirt sur le "droit-fil" (voir les flèches sur mes morceaux) pour garder l'élasticité
2- Allow a serging allowance between the pieces (black lines) but not on the outer edges of the pieces
2- Donner une allocation de surjeteuse sur les lignes noires (entre les pièces) mais pas sur les bords extérieurs.

Once I had my pattern pieces cut and my design created, I began to cut my pieces of farbic.  I went piece by piece, starting with the front pieces.  I also sewed each piece individually, to not be confused with all the weirdly shaped pieces (a lot of pieces !!!).  Here is an example of the cutting.  Notice the left edge is the outer edge and the others are inside seams:
Une fois mes pièces de papier coupées et mon design créé, j'ai coupé mes pièces de tissu.  J'ai procédé morceau par morceau pour ne pas me mêler avec toutes ces pièces de formes bizarres !  Voici un exemple de la coupe d'un morceau.  Remarquez que le bord gauche est un bord extérieur alors que les autres sont intérieurs, donc devront être cousus:

Here is a sample of cut pieces (this is the hood):
Voici les morceaux coupés du capuchon:

After all the pieces are cut, I serge them together, following a logical order. (blue and red, then add green and finish with orange)
Après que toutes les pièces sont coupées, je les surjette ensemble, en suivant un ordre logique (bleu et rouge, ensuite on ajoute le vert et enfin, le orange)

Here is the final result:
Voici le résultat final:

So anyways, I embroidered my logo on the front.  I really like that logo :)
J'ai aussi brodé mon logo sur le devant gauche - j'adore mon logo !

And then, I assembled the hoodie.
Et puis, j'ai assemblé mon kangourou.

So the reason I think it is a fail is it looks more like a theater costume than anything someone (other than me !) would actually wear.  It looks like Arlequin.  It is comfortable though...
La raison pour laquelle je le considère comme un échec, c'est parce qu'il a l'air plus d'un costume de théâtre que de quelque chose que quelqu'un (autre que moi) porterait dans la vraie vie !  Ça a l'air de Arlequin.  Il est confortable par contre...

I tried topstitching the blocks but it does not help much...
J'ai essayé de surpiquer les morceaux mais ça n'aide pas trop...

Ugh, it took me more than 6 hours to make this, much of it was making the "fabric".  And I still have all of these:
Ugh, ça m'a pris plus de 6 heures, surtout pour faire le "tissu".  Et il me reste tout ça :

I still have not installed the zipper yet because I want to buy two different colours and use one of each on the zipper - why not put MORE colours !!!   So I'll post a picture of the finished product when my sister comes back, and when I finish the darn thing...  Hopefully, I can salvage it...
Je n'ai pas encore cousu la glissière parce que je veux en acheter 2 de différentes couleurs et les mêler ensemble - pourquoi pas PLUS de couleurs !!!  Alors je vais afficher une photo du produit fini lorsque ma soeur reviendra, et quand je finirai ce foutu kangourou...  En espérant que je puisse le sauver...

On another, less depressing topic, I wanted to share with you how I store my zippers.  I saw something on the Internet that inspired me to organize my zillion zippers.  I LOVE notions, and especially zippers.  I use to have them in a bin but they ended up all tangled up and impossible to find or separate.  So I neede a simple and cheap solution: metal shower rings !  I found a nice piece of wood, nailed some nails and used my nice label maker to label the sizes (they are in cm) and here is the result:
Sur une note moins déprimante, je voulais partager avec vous comment j'entrepose mes glissières.   J'ai vu quelque chose sur Internet qui m'a inspirée à organiser mes MILLIONS de glissières.  J'ADORE les accessoires de couture, et surtout les glissières.  Avant, elles étaient dans un bac mais elles étaient toujours mêlées et impossibles à trouver ou à séparer.  J'avais donc besoin d'une solution simple et pas chère: des anneaux ouvrables de douche !!!  J'ai trouvé une jolie planche de bois, j'ai cloué quelques clous et utilisé mon étiqueteuse pour me faire de belles étiquettes de taille (en cm) et voici le résultat:

As I told you. I have a LOT of zippers but now, they are nicely ordered by size and types.  Here is a closer view of the contraption:
Comme j'ai dit, j'ai BEAUCOUP de glissières mais elles sont maintenant ordonnées par tailles et types. Voici une meilleure vue du dispositif:

I also got a nice punch in shape of a tag to make it cuter.  I used cereal box cardboard to make my labels:
Je me suis aussi procurée un "punch" en forme d'étiquette pour faire plus joli.  J'utilise des boîtes de céréales pour faire les étiquettes:

So it pretty much takes care of this post.  I'll be back with some more creations soon (although I DO have to grade papers, yet again....)
C'est pas mal tout pour aujourd'hui.  Je reviendrai bientôt avec d'autres créations (malgré que je doive faire de la correction, encore et encore...)

Don't hesitate to post comments or ask questions !
Ne vous gênez pas pour écrire des commentaires ou poser des questions !

Peace !
Ciao !


Saturday, 17 March 2012

Fashion show WIP

So I am in full throttle Fashion show designing.  I wanted my big finale to be a wedding dress (like famous designers) but since this is a school event, I decided on a prom dress.  Of course, my raw material is t-shirts so I had to come up with a style.  I have been inspired by Angela Johnson's creations, especially her famous t-shirt ballgown:

Isn't it absolutely gorgeous ?!  So of course, there are no tutorials or patterns online on this particular gown so I decided to try something with my dress form.  I drew lines on her and proceeded to make pieces from those drawings.  I tried a first corset in t-shirt and it turned out to be WAY TOO BIG - Duh!  I worked with a stretchy fabric and forgot to account for the stretch - rookie mistake !!!  So on to a second trial with smaller pieces.  It fit !!!  Yay !  Now for the skirt part...  I measured my waist and hips and figured out the length I wanted.  Then, I made my pieces with some ruffling allowance on top.  (If you want more details on how I proceeded, just ask me)  Now, when you draft a pattern yourself, it is always better to make a mock-up of your garment with the same type fabric before you use your GOOD fabric.  So I looked through my stash (once upon a time, I wanted to make and sell undies so I had bought a TON of stretchy pj's and nighties.) and found the necessary fabric.  Since it is a mock-up, I did not mind mixing the fabrics, even making pieces with different fabrics.

So here is my mock-up prom dress on the dress form:

The bodice-corset is not yet attached to the skirt part.  You can see the little PJ patterns (doggies, cats, butterflies, teapots...).  I added a few roses from one of the main fabrics just to decorate a bit.  I wonder if you guys have ideas to embellish it ?

Here is the back part:

Although it seems too small, the stretch is good and I am going to be able to insert a zipper.  I have a crinoline under it (which I bought for 1.50 at Goodwill - woot woot !).

The bottom edge is not regular because I ran out of fabric and was too lazy to fix it.  I might have to do it or to cut the bottom about 6 inches.  We'll see.

Another close-up on the bodice:

So the real dress should be made with red t-shirts.  I just hope I have enough...  My dress is not as poufy as Angela's but I could alter it.  I would just have to make the skirt panels wider.  But I think I like it like that.  Plus, wider skirt panels means more fabric...

So if you guys have any idea about embellishment, I am all ears !

Oh, and by the way, I have NOT graded any lab report...  oy vey !



Work in progress: Finished !


The week-end is arrived and I can finally sew.  I just arrived from a trip to my favorite thrift stores for some raw material to continue my fashion show collection.  I have but a month to work until the date.

Until I have a finished piece, here is a somewhat finished sweater refashion (I still have to hide the threads from the crochet).  My sister took the picture.

So remember this number ?  Baggy old men's sweater with a nice print.

I finally had time to turn it into a much more flattering and feminine...

So I crocheted an edge with single-crochet stitches (I think ?).  The lower edge needs some finishing.  I could serge it or crochet it, depending on time factor.  I'll see about that.

So on to sewing the collection with my brand new raw materials (mainly men's XL t-shirts and shirts).  I'll also have to do SOME grading of lab reports...  But the sunshine will help :)

Peace !


Wednesday, 14 March 2012

I have Comments !

Just a quick run in to say I have comments !  Yay !!!  That means I am not talking to myself !

I am working on my fashion show collection.  I made a pattern for a pieced-hoodie tonight.  A lot of pieces are coming along but need last minute things (seams, ealstics, hems , etc.) so I am not ready to post them yet.  I should be able to post some during the week-end.  Meanwhile, parent-teacher conference tomorrow so it's going to be a long day !

Tata for now !


Friday, 9 March 2012

Work in progress

Hey everyone !

I still have no comments but I figure they will come so I will continue addressing you invisible people :)

So everyone loved their little lavender pyramids yesterday and the raclette was fabulous.

Today, I am a little under the weather (sniffles and cold) just in time to go back to work : /.  So I sewed a little bit but it is not fiinshed yet.  But since I was not feeling very well tonight, I decided to crochet the edge of my previous refashions.  As nobody is here to take my picture, I can't show it to you just yet but here are the steps I took to make it.  I think you'll like it because it is very flattering.  I started with this original green sweater I got at Value Village which I like very much (albeit a tad short) and I decided to refachion one of those ugly, bulky men's swetater with a nice pattern.

So here is how the original shirt looked like on me (yes, the firefly is back !):

As you can see, not very flattering.  I am very petite so I need clothes to be tailored to my body because if not, I look like I am wearing a potato sack...

OK, so the first step was to trace a pattern from my original fitted sweater onto brown paper and to trace it back onto the men's sweater.

I first cut out the front and back parts (from the same pattern piece).  Notice that I did not cut the sweater's seams (side and shoulders) first, as I usually do.  It turned out to be a very good  step for the sleeves.

As you can see on the close-up, the original sleeve piece still has a piece of the front and back attached to it when I cut out.

Now when it came to cut out the sleeves, I like my sleeves to be bell-shaped, so the exact opposite of this boring men's sweater.  That is why I placed the piece in the opposite direction.

So the final result will be revealed in the following days (when I get someone to take a picture of me wearing it and I have time to clip the threads).

So the nice vacation is coming to an end and my collection is nowhere near to completion. Yikes !  I will have to work harder this week.

Leaving you with a picture of my baby with an apple cozy on his head.  He was not a happy camper but I was having problems breathing from laughing too much !

Hoping everyone is happy and safe !


Thursday, 8 March 2012

Party favors for spring

Hello all,

Every once and again, I get together with some teacher friends for a meal and a chat to fix all that is wrong with education today !  Tonight, we are having raclette (melted cheese and veggies, and meat, for some...).

As the temperature is finally increasing and it looks like spring, I thought I would make my friends some spring-y party favors (even though I am not the one hosting...).  I found this wonderful tutorial on U create crafts (  So I busted out my scraps (mostly donated by fellow sewers) and I bought some lavender and got working.  They are SO fast to make and fun too.  You could mix and match your fabrics too but I decided to keep it simple since I did not have much time (as per my blog title...).  So here is the result:

Five little pyramids waiting to freshen up someone's life :)

Aren't they adorable ?  And so fragrant too.  I will definitely have to make one for myself.

The tutorial says you can put them wherever: in your purse, your drawers or even in your (or a loved one's) gym bag !  There is nothing like lavender to freshen up the atmosphere.  You could even use them as stocking stuffers for Christmas !!!

OK, so I'm off to my dinner-party with my friends !

Ciao !


Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Special raincoat and swimming thru Blogger...

OK, it has been a long time since I first started this blog.  I have been refashioning quite a few things but have not had much time to figure out how to post stuff.  So here goes...

I have met a wonderful lady in Toronto last year at the Creativ Festival.  Her name is Linda McPhee  (MacPhee Workshop) and if you know her, you know what I mean.  If you don't, well you should meet her !  Anywho, I digress...

She is very original and creative and right up my alley:  What I like to do is stand out in color !!! So when I met her, she had a really cool project with those pesky plastic bags: a raincoat !!!  How fun!  Well, being the ecological self that I am, I DO NOT OWN any plastic bags... :(  So I had to call upon my work community to get some plastic bags.

I did not photograph the process of making the coat because I did not know how it would turn out, but here is the gist of it:

1- The plastic bags should be fairly thick and non wrinkled (Do NOT use an iron...)
2- Choose the images and logos that you want and cut them out
3- Choose a lining fabric (I used a donated sheet)
4- Cut out the pieces of the bags and serge them around to the pieces of lining fabric
5- Place the pieces together to make a nice pattern
6- Sew the pieces, right sides together, to make the raincoat fabric
7- Cut out the coat pattern pieces
8- Sew the raincoat according to the instructions. (you can purchase the pattern and a DVD explaining the process of her site)

So here is the final product:

These platic bags come from my colleagues at school.  I really like the colors.  

Here is what I learned:

- I like bright colors but not well known logos
- You need a LOT of time in front of you because it is VERY TIME CONSUMING
- Linda installs some gromets under the arm to let the air out
- In the next one, I will install some cording to the hood

Here is the coat on me:

Don't worry about the firefly on my head... it is not real ; )

So that is it for this post.  I will come back soon with more creations as I am making a fashion show collection (well, if you can call it a collection...)

Ciao for now !!!