Monday, 28 February 2011

Lining things!

Oh boy, I just looked through all my posts tagged 'Sew Weekly' and almost flipped out! There's so many now and I'm beginning to gush about how many great things I've made. YIKES. I cannot believe I have made so many lovely things for TWO months now!

I was hunting for this blue number, because I wanted to show you the insides... as I'm rather proud of my work. I like it when you're rather proud of your sewing and show it on your blog, so here's my lining!

I *had* thought it was the first time lining a full dress, but then I remembered I'd done it here too. Oops! But I did try really hard to make it neater this time.

The thing I've learnt since I put this lining in, is that handstitching technique: slip stitching... it's totally helped my linings stay in. There's been times I've just lined the bodice bit in dresses, and I've leaned down to pick something up or stretched in a different way and I've heard the breaking of my stitches (usually those bits around the zipper), but since I've learnt handstiching the slipstitch way, I haven't had any burst stitches.

WOO, thank goodness it's just the lining! Have you ever had that though, when you're wearing a handmade number and you've had it fall apart? It hasn't happened to me yet, but it's my NIGHTMARE when it comes with sewing... you're walking along and someone's just gushed about your dress and then it falls apart on you!



Friday, 25 February 2011

More wedding moments

As you know (if you saw over the weekend) Husbie and I photographed a wedding, and I really had such a great day... being proud of my Husbie and his great photos and then also being proud of my phots.

Here's a couple more 'detail' shots, for you, that are just simple, plain photos really, but I took them thinking of the 'Husbie Angle'. He is occasionally very good at looking at things, then getting down low, or finding a detail that perhaps look uninteresting, but is interesting or turning the lens on a diagonal (instead of using the natural horizon)... see if you can spot what I mean:

That last shot is how I feel right now (AKA celebratory!), as I've had a very successful and busy week in my day job, and have been grinning from ear to ear. I work in public broadcasting so there's different measures of success, but when almost everyone I've ever worked with calls me, emails me and swings by my desk to say "congrats on those figures": Best Day Ever yesterday.

I've 'processed' the above photos in Lightroom, it's a photo person's software program that make things get a 'look' to it. My Husbie is a film colourist as his day job, so I call this 'processing' colour grading the image, but if you don't have Lightroom, or the dosh to get it (it's easier to use than Photoshop in my opinion. I don't even have PS on my computer, waste of space for me and my interests) you can try free online 'processing' things like Picnik (which I used before I got Lightroom, and use it at work occasionally - but it makes you forever forget how to properly spell Picnic) and for those of you who like my 'rounded' edges... there's a frame section in Picnik that does it for you.

Thank you for all your lovely comments this week! I've started to get annoyed with the blogger way of comments, and how you can't 'reply' back via email as I hardly expect you to 'check' back if you get a reply from me... but I read all of them, and really love seeing your ideas and feedback!

Happy Friday xoxo

Thursday, 24 February 2011

First try at French Seams

With this week's 'Chicago' dress, I didn't want to change my overlocker threads (they were reds, and I'm planning on some orange and red creations coming up) so I ho hummed, and then remembered I'd seen some French Seams somewhere on one of your blogs, and thought I'd try that.

The fabric was quite keen to fray, so that's why I did want the overlocker or the 'contained' seams somehow, and I have no patience for the pinking scissors with longer edges of things.

I couldn't remember where I'd seen it, but when I googled just now for you, I found Colette Patterns have done a tutorial that looks easy to follow. I certainly didn't iron all the way through like these instructions tell you to, so I'd probably do that and sew a bit closer to the edges, as my French Seams are a little fat in width.

Also, if you have material (like I had) that looks similar right side and wrong side, perhaps best to remember which is which. I think I stuffed that up... OH WELL. Only I can tell, an ordinary lovely friend is none the wiser!

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

On the rooftops

Melbourne just keeps woo-ing me each and every day.

My Bestie and I ate a late afternoon cupcake at Madame Brussels today, and she got a call to say she'd been successful at a job interview! YAY. So we finished off with bubbles.

The rooftops of Melbourne just keep getting more and more attractive and I seriously wish my job was to hang out at each and every one. First Melbourne was famous for it's laneway cafe and bar culture, and now the rooftops are stretching above and beyond.


Tuesday, 22 February 2011

The old Razzle Dazzle!

Hi darlings! This week's theme for the Sew Weekly Challenge is 'And the Winner is: OSCAR COSTUMES', so of course there was an abundance of choice... for best costume nominations and winners are vast! AND all very historical!

What do you think I pulled out here?

YES, it's 1920s (kinda a modern wearable version?) dress!

YES, I am attempting dancing via photographs. Doggie Darling just doesn't know what's happening!

YES, it's Chicago! The Musical! I first saw the film at the drive in (!) with my besties in my old hatchback (awesome for lying back in!) and I didn't really know anything about it. Of course I got a bit gushy over it as everything was just so well done! The acting, dancing, performances and casting, but how good was the costumes!?

I posted this today via Mena's Sew Weekly blog, if you'd like more info. But the dress is really quite straightforward, and didn't really take very long. I think I've got to 'step up' a little in these weekly challenges? I'm a little limited because I'm only choosing stash fabric (of course I have to make it harder on myself) and often go for the easier or quicker option pattern wise. Hmmmmm, I'm not too sure, but I want to make some more riskier things this year, and so far things I haven't really stretched out too much.

Are you enjoying the Sew Weekly challenges you see here on my blog? It's certainly meant consistent blogging, hey? Let me know what you do or don't like about my outfits so far, you can be honest! I save all my 'goofier' photos just for you to see here, so we can be honest for sure!

*** My heart goes to you and yours in Christchurch, NZ, so sad. Once again I just can' watch the telly for I flipped on today and just welled up instantly. Thinking of you guys and hope everyone is found ***

Monday, 21 February 2011


So I've fallen in love...

The Bolero is my new fave piece of clothing, and I cannot believe I've gone this far (32 years, 6 months) without wearing one. Oh hang on, I think my Christening Outfit circa 1981 had a bolero. Will have to check those photos for proof!

Thought you'd appreciate these close up shots, but basically it's two front pieces (the seams are at the long top shoulder, and under the arm) and two back pieces, with some small darts in the neckline at the back. The whole shape is pulled together by matching lining pieces and you iron it a LOT after you turn it right side out.

Just so darling! Because I loved it so, I HANDSTITCHED the armholes as the pattern instructions told me to. It said 'slipstitch' and since I'd never really known there were different handstitching techniques (hey, I've never done home eco or sewing classes, how should I know this?!) I googled and found this awesome person showing you how via her video! It's freaking easy, and now my bolero will be perfect forever!

It went down REALLY well at the wedding on Saturday, as it I felt super gorgeous and super comfy all day!

Sunday, 20 February 2011

What a tough gig!

Photography is TOUGH! Yesterday Husbie and I photographed a friend of a friend's wedding (maybe another friend in that connection, I forget) and it was so beautiful but I could not have prepared myself enough!

Today my body aches a little in weird places, my 'trigger' finger hurts, and I had the vividest and busy dreams ever. Looking at things all day through a camera, makes your brain go in overdrive.

But, thank GOODNESS for comfortable shoes! I wore my new bolero, a black frock and ballet flats and it was the WISEST decision I've ever made in my entire life. For, my feet only hurt today, just a bit. If I'd worn heels, even small ones, I would have fallen over or would never have been able to wear them again. Having said that, I have just soaked them in salts! I ran around the ceremony crowd probably 18 times.

Husbie took some amazing photos (so SO many gorgeous ones!), but I'm really proud of the 'detail' shots I got. The flower above was one of the groomsman's lapel thingies, and I'm so happy with a billion other shots too! FYI, I used my Lumix GF1 (by Panasonic) all day, using about 30 gig of storage and 3 batteries (I had time to charge one of my two batteries later). The bum bag worked a treat (a little bag attached to my belt, that blended into my skirts) as I had my hands free to just have the camera ready at all times.

By the way, if you are on the lookout for a new camera, when I called one of the many Melbourne camera shops this week to buy a second battery and chip, they said Panasonic is bringing out the second version of my camera, a Lumix GF2, and there will be deals/lens packages going when they come out. I can't recommend my Lumix enough, and I do stress I am not being paid in any way to tell you this, I am an independent blogger and like to experience things myself. Anyways, hit me up if you need more info, I don't tend to gush on about my technology!

Hoping you had a darling relaxing weekend and talk to you laterz! xoxo

Saturday, 19 February 2011

All a blur

Happy Weekend guys! Today Husbie and I are taking photos at a wedding, it's my first time being an assistant. I'm very good at 'acting' the role of things, so I bet I'll be super great at this. I just hope that I'm super great at taking photos as well.

Thank you so much for all your AWESOME feedback on the red dress and bolero! Like Camelia mentioned in the comments, I'm totally thinking of making dresses in solid colours now, to match the florals in the bolero! Black, green, even yellow? Maybe yellow will clash with my hair!?

Oh, I just saw Camelia also has a giveaway/followers post going on! Go leave a comment to win some of her stash!

Today at the wedding, I'm wearing the bolero with a black dress and I just made the funniest little BUM BAG to go with it! I'll try and get a photo today of it for you!

Remember how I said with those night photos this week I had to stay REALLY still (and that's why some of them are a bit stilted), so before we left the Docklands, I did a few spins, and the above photo shows the blur/movement! It's kinda mysterious and romantic in a way!

Talk soon, xoxo

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Sew Weekly: Seeing Red

See what I'm doing there? I made a loveheart with my fingers and I'm looking at you cause I love you. LOLZ!

You may have seen my post go up yesterday at The Sew Weekly, but if you're just a casual visitor to my blog, I've been contributing to Mena's blog for just this year, and every week we settle on a theme and make up a garment in that theme. It's really fun and there's a bit of a fun sew a long following too. Go along and check it out if you're keen!

I'm really enjoying the challenge of a slower paced sewing environment. My sewing in previous years would be to list 5 things I wanted to finish by the weekend, sew like crazy, make them a bit half arsed in the process, and then get stressed when I didn't finish them. So with The Sew Weekly, I'm pacing out the deciding what to make, the fabric/pattern connections, the cutting, the joining and then the details all over a week, and it's really relaxing!

This dress is one of my faves of the year so far, it's a heavy synthetic shiny fabric (from Lincraft, but I used it for my friend's Music Award Dress, and had HEAPS leftover, just checked this archives and it is a gabardine fabric.) and kinda floaty but full in the gathered skirt.

I gotta run to work now, but I'll talk more about it and the AMAZING bolero tomorrow! I just wanted to show you some extra photos now! Husbie took the photos, using light from a street lamp, and his own camera flash, but the sun had *just* gone down and we're hanging at DOCKLANDS. It looks mysterious like it's somewhere AMAZING in the background, but it's just shipping yards!

Talk soon, have a great Thursday! xoxo

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Weird Shapes but a sweet pinnie

Hello again! No, it's my Husbie's scooter! I don't ride that kinda bikes! Only pushies!

Back in January I made this dress for the Sew Weekly challenge, the Unrequited Love Theme, and at the same time, I followed the bodice pattern and cut out this blue fabric my Mum had given me. The skirt part it basically a large rectangle sewn together, and once I realised I'd made the bodice a little bigger, it didn't need a zip!

As the material is light cotton (I think Mum got it overseas in maybe Vietnam?) I'd made it thinking I'd be able to wear it in the really hot days of the Melbs summer, but then they frankly went away. It's been so cold (although yesterday got hot again) and I've worn tights too many times!

At least I can wear my Melissa Troupe's in summertime! AND, I'm using up more of the blue stash!

Hope you're having a great week! I'll post my Sew Weekly Theme (Seeing Red - for Val Day) tomorrow! We got some GREAT night time photos, so they're pretty cool!


Tuesday, 15 February 2011

My Dad: DIY Extraordinaire

My Dad makes a LOT of stuff, currently he's building a plane (!) but he'd also just made my Mum a studio table for her artwork! Last week the box I'd been using as a footstool at work gave up the ghost, and I thought instead of requesting a new plastic one from workie, perhaps I could find some recycled stuffs! AND, voila! Dad to the rescue!

His friend helped him with the little 'keyhole' and it's made of leftover wood from my Mum's studio, and is probably as sturdy as a chopping block in the kitchen!

How gorgeous! All ready for me to rest my toots at work!

Monday, 14 February 2011

Works in Progress

Do you have those feelings in the opshop/charity shop/thrift store where you just GRAB something and you're not sure why but you know you'll need it one day? I am like that a bit like that all the time, and so have to limit my visits, but I grabbed a bagful of shoulder pads one day just like that.

I didn't know any pattern I owned had shoulder pads, and didn't really think I'd ever wear something with shoulder pads, but now I've made 2 things this year with shoulder pads! That's my current project above, based on these gorgeous instructions:

Happy Valentines Day (or two weeks in our household, everything is celebrated in 2 weeks at LEAST, but considering we've had our wedding anniversary AND my parents came to stay and we went on a fancy dinner, I think we're lying low for this next two weeks!) to you!

*** Update! ***

Mena's announced this week theme, which is SEEING RED for Val Day and so the above is a little sneaky peak of what I'm making! You should see Mena's fabulous red floral number right now!

Sunday, 13 February 2011

Time Saving Shortcut

Hey! Remember the other day, the pattern I made had a 'Time Saving Shortcut'? You guys spotted it, so I went through the pattern again... to try and find it!

And if there WAS an extra set of instructions with this shortcut, they were missing from the pattern (thrifted patterns often have missing things), but I did find this 'information' elastic chart:

The casings for this shirt dress were on the back piece (shown in the top photo) and along the shoulder seams, so the elastic pieces were meant to slide in there. So if this was the shortcut, it saved time by explaining how much elastic you need for your size.

I hope you're having a great weekend! My parents were visiting (and we ate and drank way too much - like normal!) and we're now getting the house (and our lives) ready for the week ahead.

I have some exciting news: Husbie has taken photos of several beautiful weddings over the past few years, and is booked in to shoot a wedding this Saturday. Circumstances have played out, and I will be his assistant... and take photos of 'details'! This is a huge deal for me, and of course I'm very excited! This week I'll have to make something practical to wear, that's kinda formal and appropriate. I was thinking I do have a lovely purple dress as back up (that I'll wear with flats) but would really like something with more breathable materials, I might go look through my cotton collection now.

Friday, 11 February 2011

Sew Weekly: Stash Busting #1

Hi friends! Oh boy, this week's Sew Weekly challenge has been 'fun' and 'interesting'! The theme is 'Stash Busting: A pattern and fabric you've had for a while and not used', and I got a little fixated on the 'how long it's been in my stash' part of this challenge. I've posted a bit of 'frustrated' info during my blog post over at Mena's blog but pretty much it's a fun looking dress, but not a fun practical dress.

FUNNY! It's now the fifth or sixth theme week, so I'm pretty happy I haven't fucked up anything too badly, but it isn't a dress I'd like to put on all the time. I might give it a wash and see if it softens up a bit (it's kinda floaty and electric in the skirt).

It's entirely vintage, the material is from the op shop, the pattern (that you saw earlier in the week) was a second hand one, and even the cutie little buttons are vintage, and from my darling friend's Grandmother's stash. It's so nice to reuse all these things, and it totally inspires me to make this dress work somehow!

OMG what a shapely bot! ANYWAYS, like I said, I got fixated on using the things I've had for the longest time, instead of perhaps pairing things that really work together. There's certainly some things I need to learn about fabric, perhaps there's so Spotlight or Lincraft 'Know Your Fabric' kinda courses?

Best, Veronica xoxo

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

The Curvy French and other things

That looks slightly 'professional' doesn't it!?? Whilst choosing fabric (cheap cotton stuff!) for my friend's Wedding Bunting, there was one of these 'French Curve' things on the Spotlight counter. I was like 'What's that?' and the shop assistant was like 'A French Curve' and I'm like 'But what does it do?' and she was like 'You make your own patterns and you'll never have to buy patterns again'.

People of the internetz: IS THIS TRUE? I got it straight away (but as you can see I finished the bunting - no it's not underpants, as my friend thought! - and the French Cruve is still in its packaging) but am skeptical!

The bunting turned out lovely though!

Now for this week's theme of Sew Weekly, I found an OLD "Quick! Butterick" pattern in my stash! As it's a Stash Busting Theme, I have NOT tried this one, and I'm getting fonder each week of the shirt dress, so perhaps will give this a whirl!

Monday, 7 February 2011

No proof!

I made some great cushion covers (for the bed or lounge) for my friend to celebrate her engagement... YAY for her!

But I can't find the proof!

All I have is this darling little photo showing you that I used a vintage zip, and cutie vintage tablecloth material.

I'll have to visit my friends and sneakily snap a photo of their engagement present! The cushions were square, but instead of sew up two squares and sneakily sew the zipper into the 'top of the pocket'... I used a really long rectangle... sewed up one short end of the rectangle to the zipper, overstitched it. Then did the same on the other short end of the rectangle, and then had a big long 'ring' of material looping from the zipper... then, with the fabric right sides together, I position the zipper (face down) in the middle of the square... so it's a horizontal (or vertical I guess whichever way you look) line cutting the square into two. Then you sew up the sides (as the ring bits form the other sides) and it means you have a super clean edge (once you flip it out right sides) with the zipper.

Hang on - just looked and found this video for something WITHOUT a zipper:

Neato! It kinda is how I did mine, but with a zipper.

This week's theme is Stash Busting for the Sew Weekly! I'd like to pay homage to Zoe for this one, who in my opinion called for Stash Busters to unite. I'd never even considered my fabric collection a 'stash' and realised that I had joined the many who keep fabric and touch it sometimes. This Stash Busting exercise also includes patterns, so I'm really keen to desize my collection, so I'm going to go for the not so obvious choices in fabric and patterns.

We'll see how it turns out.

Loving the Laneway

GUSH POST ALERT! I went to the St Jerome's Laneway Festival, and it was superb! I don't oft gush about music (ok maybe sometimes) or non crafty stuffs, but this festival WAS the best ever!


I'm using the Insta.gram application on my phone a lot more these days than the Hipstermatic one, because you can take the photo normally and then edit it up with different filters and styles later.

Hope your week has started out ok! It's a beautiful looking day, but quite cold for us!

Sunday, 6 February 2011

Sew Weekly: Imitation & Flattery

Hey guys! This week's Sew Weekly theme was 'Imitation is the Sincerest Form of Flattery' and I posted my dress up on Mena's site, but thought you guys need to see the results as well!!!

 I'm pretty happy with it, as it's a lovely stretch fabric (all lined too!) and really comfy! I wore it to my friend's engagement party the other week, and rode my bike in it (I did wear thongs/flip flips whilst riding!!!!) and it was really great.

The back has a beautiful shape scoop! The theme was about using a commercial idea, from online or at a shop, and found this dress, but decided to use the View C in this Vogue pattern, as I wanted straps. Not sure about the halterneck yet, perhaps another dress!

It's another busy week around my house and office, so I do apologise for the quiet week online here. I'm not sure about you, but for some reason I have a list of 'Things to do' that is really really really long and it's not getting any shorter any time soon! It's a really lovely busy time!

These photos were taken BEFORE it rained down crazy on Friday, and turned into a true winter air. I wore TIGHTS and rain jackets to a music festival yesterday and am just waiting to see how the rest of the week will pan out. Melbs certainly keeps you on your toes!

Hope you're having a lovely weekend xoxo

Dongmen Lu Fabric Market

Happy Wednesday! Time to get some fabric inspiration from the Dongmen Lu Fabric Market here in Shanghai! Can't believe how quickly 201...