Saturday, 30 August 2014

Me-Made Rejects

Have you got those me-made items of clothes in your wardrobe that don't really fit you or you just don't wear?
I have had these items hanging on my rail for longer than I care to remember. Needless to say I felt that despite the hours of work that went into them I just had to pass them onto to somebody else.

Reject Case One

Material: A gorgeous red silk purchased from John Lewis in Nottingham circa 1998
Pattern: Simplicity 9868 (or similar because I don't have the original pattern anymore)
Purpose: I made it to wear to my friends wedding to go with some lovely red silk kitten heel slingbacks - look it was the 1990's!
Reason for rejection: The bodice is too short and too wide and the arm-holes are too deep

 The skills I learnt when making this top waaaay back in 1998 were; rouleau loops for the buttons, self-covered buttons and making an interfaced collar. So it has been good for something!

The problems I always had with this top were the collar never really fitted quite right, as mentioned in the round up above it's too wide on the main bodice, the bust darts just were not that flattering and it is too short. I quite liked the length back in the days where my 20-year old stomach was svelte and taut, but not so much now....

Well, hopefully somebody at the Oxfam Charity shop in Marylebone will like it!

Reject Case Two

Material: Vintage 60's polyester / nylon mix I found in an old stock cupboard at work
Pattern: Self-drafted from my favourite Top Shop dress
Purpose: I thought this fabric would look super-cool in this dress style - turns out I was wrong.... I just don't think the orange background colour of the fabric is that flattering with my pale skin tone.
Reason for rejection: The fit is perfect but I just haven't worn it in over 7 years... that tells you something?!

Although the green ric-rac picks up on the fab colours in the material it just looks a bit too much altogether. The hem is all picked by hand and I faced the bodice in contrasting fabric (forgot to take photos of that bit).

Well, I hope whoever finds these little hand-made gems loves them and wears them - or cuts them up to make something new - I couldn't bring myself to do that!
It is far better that they are out in the world with the potential for some fun with somebody else than stuck in my wardrobe gathering dust!

Friday, 22 August 2014

CJ = Culture Junkie

Despite having a hectic workload of DIY house renovation and MA dissertation writing to do this summer (one of these projects is going better than the other... I think you can probably guess which one) I knew I would need some creative breaks and a chance to get out of the house.

Enter a little bit of culture through some speedy trips to some wonderful exhibitions. My trip to see the Jean Paul Gaultier at the Barbican had been on my 'to-go-see' list for ages so I happily combined it with a few errands over the East part of London.

Barbican - The Fashion world of Jean Paul Gaultier from the Sidewalk to the Catwalk

Wow, catchy title!! First of all I had no idea what to expect in terms of the size of the exhibition because I have never been to the Barbican art gallery before, but I was mightily impressed with the sheer volume of the garments on show.
The way the exhibition was displayed was creative and fun with a side helping of fetish and smut - just what you would expect from JPG himself!
Its running until the 25th August so you have a few days left to check out this french corset creating fashionista.

Here are a few photos of the exhibition split into categories:


Influences and muses

Beading and embroidery details

Fashion and Textiles Museum - Made in Mexico

Last night I met a friend at the Fashion and Textiles Museum to see the Made in Mexico exhibition - I got a great deal on Amazon Local for a reduced entrance ticket price of £7 AND a free hot drink voucher to use at the lovely little tea-room in the museum. If you want to see this exhibition you have until the 31st August to catch it!

I knew the exhibition would be compact - the FTM is quite small - but it packed a great punch; with lots of colour and different styles of exhibit ranging from garments, textiles, weaving, embroidery and artefacts. The upper level of the museum was dedicated to more contemporary work that has been influenced or inspired by Mexican culture.

Here are some images from Made in Mexico exhibition:

I loved the colours and vibrancy of the Made in Mexico exhibition.
Have you been to any inspiring exhibitions recently?

Friday, 8 August 2014


Is it a dress?

No, it is my monochrome two-piece.
Grainline Scout Woven tee plus Dolores Pocket Skirt

Monday, 4 August 2014

Monosewn & Two-Piece-Set-Acular

I participated in the July Monthly Stitch challenge for the first time. The lovely ladies at the Monthly stitch cleverly entitled this 'monosewn' because the challenge was to sew entirely in monochrome.
I decided to make another Dolores Pocket Skirt whilst I was in the swing of it using the black and white fabric bought in the John Lewis sale. It came together very well with hand-stitching on the waistband and pockets for added decoration.

It was after completing the black and white skirt I came across Ada Spragg's Two-Piece-Set-Acular challenge and thought I should create a co-ordinating top for that matchy-matchy effect. I will get some photos of me wearing this ensemble later in the week ; )

Quick google-detective work on the fabric revealed the apt title for the fabric is 'Connect the Dots' by Kim Schaefer. You can buy it here