Saturday, 6 July 2013

From Toile to Twirl !

Well, almost ! After a busy week of work, I was up with the lark this morning for a bit of sewing machine 'me time' and a spell on my evolving, floral dress. Here's the story so far...(zip, sleeves etc to follow), but pleats behaving and I decided on an a bit of a flourish with some gorgeous, emerald green velvet for the contrasting yoke under the bust. All as modelled here by my new trusty sidekick, 'Annabel', (aka dressmaker's mannequin - and I'm reliably informed that she must be 'named' ! What can I tell you, I play by the rules, the name popped up and then stuck). Soo, this gal is by far one of my best 'sewing purchases' yet. Not quite sure how I have done without her thus far.
Working in 3 dimensions on the 'body' of  a mannequin, rather than flat on a work table makes logical sense even on paper! In practise it is even better. It has been a much easier way of viewing the back of the dress whilst working on the details of the pleats, where they sit and how they hang. Far more practical than pinning them to the back of myself and doing my best owl imitation to see what's going on back there! Mannequins have a multitude of other advantages from the very start of the process too, when pattern pieces can be arranged and pinned on, and of course they are a useful place to 'hang' creations 'in progress' (and avoid creasing). So, I digress. My latest foray with  cotton velvet has worked well here I think and is and something that I have done before to add trims and panels on other items. Many a Summer skirt has later been re-introduced to the machine for the velvet 'pep up' treatment.

I have also added a silk velvet panel when working with jersey fabrics, which adds a whole new element of fun and required patience! Attaching a water like, slippery silk velvet to a stretchy jersey can see fabrics seemingly move in opposite directions under the machine, but is do'able with a bit of grit! (I think I held my breath until the last of it had passed under the needle and safely out the other side !) Working with cotton or silk velvet usually follows with an exercise in de-cluttering the inside of my machine of 'velvet dust' too, but that is far outweighed by the sumptuous 'pop' it can give against other fabrics. I have some of the green left over which I hope to incorporate on a matching purse. (If it hasn't been hijacked for another project before then !)
So far so good. And the cat approves.




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