8.29.2014

flowers and colors and newness

Mood Fabrics | Thakoon Amparo Blue & White Viscose Jersey | Vogue1287

Hi guys! So you may have noticed that I've done some redecorating around these parts! I hope you like it! I've been meaning to give my blog a little facelift for awhile now but couldn't quite decide how far I wanted to go with it.  Eventually I decided just a little sprucing up, a little feng shui, and a new coat of paint was really all I needed to make this space feel fresh again. There's no major reason for the new look, I just felt like it was time.  For the most part everything is still the same, but I might be doing some larger reorganizing of things in the next few weeks, so don't be alarmed if things keep changing or look a bit weird if you come back and visit. I do all this stuff myself, so it's a lot of trial and error and googling things like "how do I get rid of the weird space in my sidebar in blogger". Fun times! Speaking of which, if anyone can tell me how to get rid of that skinny black line underneath my header I will tunnel through cyberspace and give you a giant smooch!! (translate: I will be forever grateful and I'll repay you with undying love and loyalty. Like a puppy.) (UPDATE!! Problem solved!! Jana, you win my endless love and devotion!)

Mood Fabrics | Thakoon Amparo Blue & White Viscose Jersey | Vogue1287

So let's talk about this dress! This is my latest make for the Mood Sewing Network.  I generally feel like sewists take one of two approaches when confronted with a large scale print, like this Thakoon Amparo Blue and White Viscose Jersey. You either opt for a simple silhouette to pair it with so the whole thing doesn't become to overwhelming, or you go for an equally statement making design and the let the print and style duke it out. Winner takes all? Or perhaps the battle simply swallows whoever was foolish enough to attempt the pairing in the first place! Well, whatever, I fall into the latter category.

Mood Fabrics | Thakoon Amparo Blue & White Viscose Jersey | Vogue1287

This jersey is the stuff of dreams. It's a sheer, light as a feather, tissue weight jersey, with a modest amount of stretch, and it drapes like a boss. I ordered several yards of it without really having a plan for what it would become, but once it arrived I couldn't get over how gorgeous it looked as it folded and shimmied over itself.  The large blue floral print became abstracted and even more beautiful than when left un-manipulated.


Mood Fabrics | Thakoon Amparo Blue & White Viscose Jersey | Vogue1287

So I decided to pair it with Vogue 1287, a DKNY pattern that I've had in my pattern stash for awhile. This pattern's got pleats out the wazooey, saggy pockets, kimono sleeves, a mock wrap top... it's got errrythang! I knew that the Thakoon jersey would be much too drapey and ... I don't know... ephemeral to stand up to all those pleats, but I also imagined this fabric falling in soft folds instead of sharp pleats and, in my minds eye, this pairing seemed inspired. At the time. I'm not 100% sure how I feel about the end result, but there are a few reasons for this.

Mood Fabrics | Thakoon Amparo Blue & White Viscose Jersey | Vogue1287

Chief among them being that this was one of those patterns that suggests jersey as a possible fabric, but only includes instructions for wovens. Total pet peeve of mine. Why do you do this, Big 4 Patterns?? Why?! Who understitches a jersey?? I ended up following the instructions as they were written, my reasoning being that this viscose jersey wasn't extremely stretchy, and that the style itself didn't have any areas of negative ease, so I really didn't need the fabric to stretch.  It turned out mostly all right, however there are a few areas where the stitching pulls the fabric too tight and I got some puckering - like around the pockets.

Mood Fabrics | Thakoon Amparo Blue & White Viscose Jersey | Vogue1287

Speaking of the pockets - I love how deep and slouchy these are! They create some volume around the hips which helps balance the blousy-ness of the bodice. You can also get a peak at the accompanying slip I made for this dress. This was included with the pattern and I was soooo tempted to skip it! However my jersey was very sheer and really needed a slip, and I didn't own any plain white slips, so I decided to give it a go. I used some white crepe de chine I've had lying around. I had barely enough to make this slip, which is all cut on the bias.  I sewed it up one night after work and expected it to go together in a couple hours. The slip had different plans. It was just so finnicky! I forgot how stressful sewing bias cut garments can be! However, I'm glad to have it.

Mood Fabrics | Thakoon Amparo Blue & White Viscose Jersey | Vogue1287

The back is definitely the most boring view of the whole dress.  The back waistband is gathered with elastic (yawn) and the pockets wrap around the hips (the potential is there but it leaves me feeling a bit 'meh').  I sewed a straight size 12 for this dress, but probably could have sized down. I tried it on after inserting the elastic and the waist was very loose, which, combined with the loose, drapey bodice, the saggy hip pockets, and the large print, made for a very unflattering dress. Luckily, the solution was simple, I just cut a smaller length of elastic to pull the waist tighter, which created the shape I was missing before.  I also only had 1 inch wide elastic on hand, and this pattern calls for 1.5 inch wide elastic. I thought I could get away with it, but it really does look a bit sloppy, so I think I'll switch it out for wider elastic when I make my next Joanne's run. 

Mood Fabrics | Thakoon Amparo Blue & White Viscose Jersey | Vogue1287

If I'm being truthful, this dress kind of stressed me out. I probably should have tried to make something a bit more straightforward this month because I was in the midst of a very labor intensive install at the gallery which had me running on fumes. But I had a vision! And dammit, I wanted to see it come to fruition! But the combination of this delicate knit, the instructions, and all those pleats (seriously, it felt like they were never ending... I think I spent three nights after work skipping dinner and just sewing fricking pleats. I could be exaggerating. But I don't think I am) and that shifty bias slip had me crying out in frustration on more than one occasion! And then, when it was time for me to try it on, I couldn't quite decide if I was wearing the dress, or if the dress was wearing me! The combination of the print and the pleats and the drapes just seemed like... a lot

But I think it's growing on me. Now that I'm on the other side of my work stress and I've had a few good nights sleeps under my belt (and stopped skipping meals) I can look at this dress and see that maybe it's actually the right amount of everything.  

Maybe...

xx

50 comments:

  1. I think it's beautiful on you - you should wear it proudly, definitely! I don't know... it has a kind of japanese feel to it that is very nice.

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  2. Hi Sallie,
    I don’t seem to be able to find an e-mail address for you, so I guess I’ll have to try and help in a comment.
    Disclaimer: I know nothing at all about blogger or blog platform styling in general, but I’m pretty decent at CSS by itself, so perhaps I can help anyway.
    What you need is this:
    #linkbar { border: none !important; }
    I can’t tell you where to put that snippet, however. I’m guessing you can edit your CSS somewhere? That’s where you’d put it.
    Does that make any sense? I have my doubts, but if you want to chat some more and not fill your comments with this, my e-mail address is on my blog about page. (:

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  3. Jana!!! You're a genius!! I will try that! If it doesn't work I will definitely be emailing you. And yes, adding some contact info is in the works!

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  4. Woohoo!!! It worked!! Jana you are my CSS fairy godmother! I hadn't thought the problem was the LINKBAR! Thank you thank you thank you!! I can't tell you how many inane google searches I did to try to get rid of that thing! Much love, my friend!!!

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  5. Haha. I’m not a genius, I just like to tinker with things. Particularly ones that are none of my business, I guess? (:
    Glad it worked, however. Now I’ll have to think about what to do with that endless love and devotion, hahahahahaha. Ahem.

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  6. Very pretty! The draping on the wrap front is just beautiful. Love those pockets, too.

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  7. The idea of pleating lightweight knit makes me want to cry! (I recently bought a couple of Donna Karan patterns and I think she might be a bit sadistic.) I'm glad you're a stronger woman than I, though, because I think the result is beautiful and not visually too busy at all. I can forgive a fabric in that color blue of almost anything, though :)

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  8. This fabric is so beautiful! And those pockets! Swoon.

    Love the new blog header, btw!!! So awesome :D

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  9. You can send it to me because I would totally wear it. Sorry it caused you so much stress but you had a vision and it turned out awesome

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  10. You look gorgeous in this dress! The fabric is stunning and you have a knack for making awesome garments out of patterns that I had previously overlooked. Amazing! P.s. Your new blog is gorgeous and clean :)

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  11. Such a gorgeous dress! amazing how different it looks from the original DKNY garment. Much better, in my opinion: more flowy and graceful. I love your blog's new look too!

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  12. I like it! Quite different with a punchy print compared to your gorgeous and usual palette of soft earthy colours :) Loving the new blog look too!

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  13. Lovin your new blog space
    Would you mind me sharing any of your projects on Sassy Sewing Bees in the future? I link to your post and let you know when featured.
    https://facebook.com/sassysewingbees

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  14. The fourth image from the top is stunning!!

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  15. You are wearing the hell out of that dress, it is not wearing you. I think the large scale print and the soft pleats and the draping all look beautiful together.

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  16. I LOVE this silhouette! I have this pattern too and much prefer your choice in fabric, it looks so much softer in person than on the pattern cover. Those colors look gorg on your too.

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  17. You look gorgeous! I think this might be one of my favourites. Those dinner-less nights paid off, the soft pleats and the overall shape is stunning, especially in that fabric. Wonderful wonderful dress!

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  18. i cannot see the things you dislike about this dress! as soon as i saw the first picture i was in love. i think it's a great match of fabric and pattern, not over the top at all! i'm curious about the slip since i've been wanting to make one... i'd love to hear more about it!

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  19. Oh I love the new header! Beautiful. A bit more streamlined but still with that great colorful vibe. And sis I really love this dress! Sometimes those slightly less structured jersey creations are our best wardrobe friends. Like on those days when we still need to look great but just want to stay in pjs. You look fabulous and I adore that print and color combo! I used to have a skirt in those colors like 4 sizes ago and it always make me happy to put it on. Stunning as always. Can't wait to hear if the wider elastic makes you feel more structured in the back. I'm a big fan of wide elastic myself. 😉. Love you!

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  20. It's definitely the right amount of everything. You look glorious (and your floral backdrop ain't hurting). Loving the contrast of the cobalt and the white, and I think this is very much your style in terms of shape and proportion. Also, the new design looks lovely! So happy you integrated your watercolour goodness into the aesthetic. xoxo

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  21. so, does romantic brazilian jazz sort of mysteriously waft through the air when you walk around in this? you are a dream.

    and you blog! gorgeous!!

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  22. This dress is gorgeous! It would look really nice in one of your hand dyed fabrics too. If I was still working at a gallery I would totally include this in my work wardrobe. Perfect for summer openings. Do you get a whole month to install? By the way really liking the blog make-over.

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  23. The McCall Pattern CompanyAugust 30, 2014 at 8:08 AM

    Love this pattern on you! I'm passing along your comment about the directions to the right team here.

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  24. This is so, so gorgeous!! I think the pattern and fabric are perfect together! And I agree with sundaricarmody that this pattern would look amazing in one of your hand dyed fabrics. I want to make this now, but I can't for the life of me figure out vogue sizing, and I don't want to waste fabric making a tent. How many sizes smaller than the recommended size do you normally sew?

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  25. Well pain and suffering aside, I think this dress looks beautiful on you and also super comfortable. Glad that the stress is slowing down for you now. Your blog looks great!

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  26. i had no intention of ever making this pattern, but now i want one badly. this is so beautiful Sallie. Seriously love it.

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  27. Give me that dress and nobody gets hurt... Also, how incredible are big pockets? Or that blue & white combo? Everything x

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  28. This dress is a total stunner and so are you! It's really, really beautiful and your bougainvillea backdrop is upsettingly gorgeous.

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  29. PS- love the blog makeover! It looks great and very you!

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  30. Your blog makeover is so pretty! I don't usually bother with prettifying mine because I so seldom post anyway, but mine could probably look better than it does...

    While this dress may have been stressful, I think the end result was worth it. I think it'll be even better this fall with a chocolate "jean" jacket--you do have one of those, right? ;-) And boots! Speaking of footwear, do you know what those shoes are? I love them and cute, low heeled shoes are often hard to find.

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  31. no! It's glorious, and I want one just like it. Hopefully your memories of making it will fade swiftly... :-)

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  32. It's BEAUTIFUL! I just scrolled through all the pictures before I even read your post and gawked at it. So stunning, really, really. That royal blue looks amazing on you

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  33. It is the right amount of everything for sure. This colour and print is gorgeous on you and clearly you know how to team them up with a perfect pattern. Great to hear you are on the other side of your work stress.

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  34. Thanks!! My shoes are an old pair of Frye's. I've had them for a few years, not sure if they make them anymore, but they really are the perfect low heel! And now I'll definitely have to make a chocolate jean jacket!!

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  35. Thanks!!
    I've made a few patterns that call for both wovens or knits as a possible fabric, but the construction method is clearly for wovens. It's probably overkill to include a totally different set of instructions, but maybe it would be possible to include a few tips? That way if you DO make it with a knit you'll get a more long-lasting fabric if you construct it a little differently. Just a thought! Regardless, I love this pattern, it's a really beautiful design, and it was nice making up something a little more complicated. Thanks for checking it out!

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  36. Thanks!!! I've been meaning to dive back into some hand dyeing, so this could absolutely be a possibility!!
    We don't usually get a whole month for install, more like a one or two week turnover, but this particular project was more of a short term residency. The artists were actually making the piece on site for the past month or so, it was a bit of an elaborate project! Turned out great, but I'm glad it's over!!

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  37. Thanks Chantal!!
    I normally choose my size with patterns based on the finished garment measurements, not the recommended size. On vogue patterns the finished garment measurements are printed on the pattern pieces. I just find whatever is the closest fitting part of the garment (in this case the waist) and find the measurement closest to mine and cut that size. That way I can have a little bit of control over how much wearing ease I get, because I've found I usually prefer a closer fit than what the pattern sizing tells me.

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  38. Despite the stress it gave you it's truly wonderful on. Just gorgeous.

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  39. Love the dress! The pattern is amazing and I love that it has pockets! Great job on the new blog design - I like the watercolor effect:)

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  40. yessss, Sallie! this is everything!

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  41. I absolutely adore this dress on you! As soon as I saw the pattern number I added it to my wish list. I wonder if it is still available. Love the print, the shape, the drapiness, errrything!

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  42. Oh you gorgeous thing you. You probably just sold a million yards of that jersey... it's so beautiful! I often wonder why patterns suggest so many options like that. Jersey is a completely different ballpark!


    Love the fresh design too! Everything you wear is so painterly--makes the design feel like home.

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  43. This dress is just perfect and you look awesome! I have this pattern in my stash for what seems like an eternity and you inspired me to finally give it a try...

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  44. It is the right amount of everything! Doesn't it feel good to just power through! I think it looks great, and good for you for finishing.

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  45. Don't be so hard on yourself, this dress is beeeaaauuuutttiiiifffuuuullllll!!! You really are the master of big prints and everything that is drapey and amazing.

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  46. Hi Sallie, love the dress - I am probably on the conservative side when it comes to matching bold prints with drapey pattern. I'd prbably only go for a black knit - whopsee, aleready have the dress in my closet. (Probably says something about my style choices.
    I like the new web layout too. Did you make the blobs on paper and then scanned them to the computer?

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  47. I once started another DKNY pattern that had a bazillion pleats and it beat me. Totally. But oh gosh this is gorgeous and THE perfect merging of comfy and stylish. Love the colour and it suits you beautifully.

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  48. I completely love this dress. Oh! that fabric would look good just thrown over you. I don't see any of the faults you see, but I know how that goes. Gorgeous on you.

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  49. You have chosen a beautiful fabric for the dress and you look great in this dress!

    Sincerely, Stacy

    My Sewing & DIY Blog

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  50. there is deffinitely right amount of everything.. to my eye, your new dress has that cool hawaiian wibe, and all the flowers and palm work as a perfect backdrop for that look..
    also, i really love new look of your blog

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