Tag Archive | vogue

Denim Vogue 1247

DSCI0152Looking at great everyday clothing, I realized I am lacking a denim blue jean skirt. Thanks to my mom I got two yards of denim (or as she told the lady cutting 2 pounds of denim).


I choose to use the skirt Vogue 1247 (Rachel Comey) again. I love my tan denim version; however, it is a little short to wear to work without leggings on under.  It is hard to believe that this pattern is out of print now especially when you look and see 120 reviews for it on Pattern Review.


Like before I used the size 18. But this time I took the bottom skirt front and bottom skirt back and added 2 inches in length (most of this ended up being use in the hem of this skirt).  For a faster sew, I didn’t use the bias binding on the seams.  I went ahead and used my serger instead.

Because of the stretch of the denim, I pulled in my side seams an extra quarter-inch on each side. The pockets use a little of the quilting cotton I picked up to make my Samantha doll a new dress (not even started her dress yet but do have the pattern cut).



Designer Time- Rachel Comey’s Vogue 1247


With the cold weather settling in, I haven’t really wanted to go outside to take pictures of my projects. Hopefully with the Christmas tree up, I can at least get a couple of pictures of completed projects.  But that means I am taking my pictures myself with the camera timer, so they may not all turn out well.

It all started with tidying up the craft room.  I had a bag from the fabric store laying on the ground that needed to be put away (bag goes in the storage container to be used for cleaning the litter pan).  Out of the bag comes two patterns to add to the stash.  As I was looking at the Rachel Comey pattern, I realized I had a silk cotton voile that may work for the top.  The voile wasn’t listed on the recommended fabric list, but the more I looked at it the more I really thought it would work.  But this is a silk cotton voile, so it shouldn’t be wasted on a pattern it wasn’t meant for.  I went on to Pattern Review and asked just so I was sure this would work.  So thank you to everyone who helped me.  The next day, while doing a bit more internet research, the skirt was popping up on practically every blog I looked at.  So I decided to add the skirt to the project too.

Everywhere I read that the top is very oversized.  It seems to be all over the place because some went down just one size to others going down at least 4 sizes.  I usually sew between a 14 and 16.  I traced out the size 12.  I did grade out to an 18 at the hem.  I was worried that the bottom would not be big enough.  But then I started thinking about the blouse shape.  The more I thought about the triangle shape; the more uncertain about it I was.  So in the end I decided to put the silk voile back in the stash for a different top.

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I stole the denim from the lot of fabric I had reserved for doll clothes.  I actually picked up this remnant of tan stretch denim so I could make several pairs of doll jeans out of.  (I still had enough fabric left over to make my dolls jeans which will go great with Molly’s suit jacket but no jeans for my dad’s work.) First thought through my mind, I can’t do the bias trim from the denim.  That will be way too thick and bulky.  The bias trim is from quilting cotton instead.  I picked up a couple of fat quarters when I bought my zipper.  I used one of the many fat quarter bias trim tutorials from pinterest.  It did work out well.  I had plenty of bias trim to use on my skirt.  The other fat quarter went to making the pocket lining.  I do like how finished the inside of the skirt looks.

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I wasn’t sure where the waistband was supposed to be at on me.  I thought the picture looked like it was under the model’s belly button.  I went ahead and used a size 18 for my skirt.  The denim I used is very stretchy, so I ended up taking in each side an additional half inch so it was probably closer to the size 16.   Luckily I am short, so the 15 inch mini length is actually longer on me so I didn’t change the hem at all. Actually on me the skirt is right above the belly button a little. It does have a tendency to ride up after I sit down.  The skirt still works.

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I still have two other projects to get up on the blog plus the Ginger jeans when they are finished. I really do need to get started on the Colette pattern’s Lady Grey coat.  I cut the pieces out and was going to trace out my size but got intimidated when I noticed there was no finished garment measurement on the pattern.  All the projects I had planned to use as a break from the Lady Grey coat when needed are now pretty much done, so I plan on cutting out some doll patterns to have for the break.


Wrap dress- Vogue 8379


DSCI0082In keeping with items I really need, I pulled out Vogue 8379 for the Pattern Stash contest. I was able to add the Vogue Rebecca Taylor dress and the Sewaholic Gabriola skirt last month into rotation. But I still feel like I am wearing the same items all the time. So I would like to make a couple more dresses to wear.

Vogue 8379 is the most detailed knit pattern I have worked on since the swimsuit last year. The swimsuit caused my previous sewing machine to have fits but following the sew-along really helped me out. This time, there was no sewing machine problems. I think all the troubles I had were caused by my inexperience with knit fabric.

I cut a straight size 14. I put clear elastic in the shoulder seams, neckline, and waist seam. I am not sure but the fabric may be a little heavy for the pattern. It was from a Fabric-mart mystery bundle and it was just labeled as jersey. All vertical seams have been getting the triple stretch straight stitch while all horizontal seams were getting a small zig-zag stitch. After that, the seam was finished on my serger.

Everything seemed to be going well, until after I finished serging the side and shoulder seams. I realized I put one side in backwards. I had to take the seams apart, re-cut the front piece (it isn’t salvageable) and redo all that I did. I wished Lala would have hopped onto the fabric and kept me from making the mistakes. Silly bunny is always sitting on the fabric when you don’t want him to but stays away as you are making a mistake. Then I noticed there were more sewing problems with my bodice.

Thankfully, I had enough fabric to cut the bodice. This time I went ahead and basted the side seams so I had the pieces correct before stitching. I didn’t want to have to unpick anymore (one try was enough for all that). The second time around the bodice went together much quicker.

Everything seemed to be going smoothly after the second bodice was put together. But that was deceiving. I ran out of thread in the bobbin in mid-seam. Then as I was refilling the bobbin, I ran out of thread in the top. So there was a dash off to the fabric store to get thread.

Vogue 8379 is the most detailed knit pattern I have worked on since the swimsuit last year. The swimsuit caused my previous sewing machine to have fits. This time, there was no sewing machine problems. I think all the troubles I had were due to my inexperience with knit fabric. In the end the dress did look like it was home-made; there is no way anyone would think this is ready to wear. I honestly don’t know what I did wrong with the pleats. Maybe the oddness is because I should have went up a size in the waist or made the pleats smaller? The neckline is all bunched up because I pulled the clear elastic a bit too much. I used it so there would not be gaping at the neckline.  Looking in the mirror, I knew it was sewn together terribly, but after looking at the camera pictures it is worse than I thought.

I want to go back and try this pattern again but I may wait awhile until I have completed some other simple knit fabric projects. I think the next knit fabric pattern I will be trying will be Tilly and the Button’s Coco pattern.

Last two patterns planned for the Pattern Stash contest are the Deer & Doe Airelle blouse and Simplicity 2246 (Lisette Traveler dress). Since I had to redo parts of the Vogue dress, I am not sure if I will be able to finish both for Pattern Stash.


Summers can be Murder-Vogue 1344 (Rebecca Taylor dress)

Last weekend was murder mystery weekend!  This time my mom and I tried out the murder mystery weekend at the Higher Ground Hotel out in Independence Missouri.  This was different from our usual murder mystery weekends.  It was an immersion style play which was centered around Harry S. Truman (whose house is across the street from the hotel).


We started out with going out to the garden to get pictures of my new me-made dress.  There was a brief thought of waiting until the Saturday afternoon for the garden party, but luckily we did not wait as there was rain forecasted on Saturday.  After pictures in the garden, we went to dinner.  All the dishes for dinner came from a Bess Truman cookbook.  The characters come in and mingle with the guests.  President Truman and Bess arrive after the salad course.  By the end of the dinner and reception with President Truman, Archie was dead.



Saturday, the detective came in and told us what housekeeping found in Archie’s room.  We take the paper with clue locations and went out to Independence Square to search for the clues that Archie left.  After that, we went back to the hotel and relaxed.  I read and kept an eye on the World Cup game.  My mom took a nap.  In the afternoon, there was a wine tasting and hors-d’oeuvres party.  It was supposed to be out in the garden but about an hour before, the rain started.

At dinner, the characters came back in and mingled with the guest.  We got to hear about their night in the police station.  At dessert, we filled out our solution form and turned it in.  After a few minutes, we found out who the murder was.  My mom and I had the correct answer and the correct motive.


On to the pattern review:

As mentioned before, I was able to get pictures of my new dress out in their pretty little garden on Friday night before dinner.  Here is my dress for Handmade by Heather B’s Summer Sundress Sew-along.  It is Vogue 1344 from designer Rebecca Taylor.  I didn’t do a muslin and cut a straight size 14.


I tried to squeak this dress out on what was left of the teal rayon Challis from the Gabriola skirt but it wouldn’t work.  I just didn’t have enough to make the front overlay.  So scouring through the fabric stash yielded the floral rayon Challis.  I was able to get everything to fit on what I had and had room to spare for bias (for the arm area if needed) and possibly a couple of doll tops.  That was with putting a seam in the center back skirt only (the only cutting change I had to make).

I really didn’t follow Vogue’s recommendations at all.  The pattern is designed for charmeuese, crepe de chine, and voile.  All of those are lighter than the rayon Challis I had in my stash.  So I didn’t use the lining.  Since I didn’t have the lining I could not follow the instructions for the waistline elastic casing.  I just zigzagged it on the waist area.  I may see about picking up some bias tape and making an elastic casing for the waist.


I started my pattern a little differently that the instructions.  I went ahead and did the skirt section first before putting together the bodice and all those pleats.  The nice easy section of the dress.  The second night was for tackling the bodice pleats.

I used my serger to over lock all of the seams.  After I had over-locked the waist, I went ahead and tried the dress on.  It was then that I realized I did the wrap front backwards.  There was no way I was going to unpick the over lock stitch and the regular straight stitches out of the dress.  So it stayed that way.


The neckline facing is all hand sewn at the bottom so it would not flip out.

I probably could have used the size 12 at the shoulders.  They are a touch big.

Pattern Review is starting their pattern stash competition in July.  I have already scoured my stash and came up with 4 lovely patterns to try.  Two are tops (McCall’s 5884 and Deer & Doe Airelle) and the other two are dresses (Vogue 8379 and Simplicity 2246).

I thought this was a Garden Party… Vogue 8789

Lala helping to quilt

The night before pulling out the fabric for this project, I had some cotton out practicing with my rotary cutter by making a quilt block. (A side note, that finished quilt block is missing. I should probably send out an APB on it, more likely a CCR (clean the craft room).) Suddenly, my new little pet decided he was going to help out. I think he wants to be a debutant in the sewing community. Sewing community, this is Lala. He came home with me in October. He apparently has a love for helping out with crafts, throwing items (especially remotes) off the couch, getting into mischief, and thinking he is in charge of the power cord for the sewing machine (he doesn’t like the serger though). I think I have finally broke him of the bad habit of trying to chew the power cord but he sits right next to it and me as I am sewing. If I end up with a needle through my finger, it will be because I was too busy watching the bunny and power cord not focusing on the needle like I should.

On to the finished project, here is Vogue 8789 in a pink plaid silk taffeta.

It is a reprint from 1957. Vogue describes it as a pull over dress with a bias cut fitted bodice in view A which is the view I made. Vogue give you an unlined dress in this pattern. The neckline facings are attached to the bodice pieces so that they are cut out in one piece. Since I was using silk taffeta, I consulted everyone on Pattern Review as to if silk taffeta needed to be lined. They suggested to line it for better use. I picked up some silk lining also from a different online store.

Vogue rates this as an easy pattern. I think that is an appropriate rating. I started this on Saturday January 12th. By the end of the weekend, I had about the whole dress done and that was including several 30 minute breaks so the bunny could get out and play. He wasn’t allowed out of his cage while the silk was out. I was just missing back of skirt, skirt lining, horsehair braid, and waist stay. My progress slowed down after that weekend because I had to go back to work and hand sewing.
I should have been able to get everything done in a week if I had been better prepared with what I wanted to do. But since I wasn’t sure about doing two skirt panels or four, I didn’t have everything cut at the same time and had to go backwards to cut and serge edges. Also, I had a bit of a bunny dilemma. Monday night as I was preparing to cut the last of the silk, Lala had a tantrum in his cage and threw his litter pan across the cage. He wanted out to play. I didn’t want Lala out because I was afraid he would get dirt on my silk. He kept repeatedly throwing the litter pan after I would put it back so I had to keep putting his litter pan back while cutting. After I had everything cut taking 30 minutes instead of 10, I had to let him out so he wouldn’t tear the cage apart. I didn’t get my dress complete until February 4th. I could have possibly finished it over the weekend, but I went out to my parents’ house. I just didn’t feel comfortable enough with the Singer Futura 920 which is set up to operate on a knee peddle. I didn’t want to take chances with my creation just getting ruined because of unfamiliarity with a sewing machine.
The dress fabric is a silk taffeta I got from an online fabric store. I haven’t really used silk before this dress. I did noticed that my fabric had a great tendency towards fraying. So this did worry me a little. I went ahead and put the serger over all the edges to prevent fraying. It also made it much easier later to do narrow rolled hems with the horsehair braid.
Since this was a pricier fabric, I went ahead and made a muslin in size 14. I probably made the muslin back in September. After several months of not looking at it, I probably had a more objective opinion when it came to fit. So now for modifications-

• I had troubles with the front gaping- so I took about an inch off the length in the shoulders (so probably about a size 6 in the shoulders).
• I added 2 inches length back in under the bust. The finished dress has a wrinkle right at the bottom of the bodice so my 2 inches should have been more of a 1 ½ inch or less instead.
• I took about 10 inches off the hem.
• Since I was doing a lining, I didn’t bother with the arm facings.
• I hand sewed the neckline facings to the lining.
• I opted to do a narrow hem with half inch polyester horsehair braid in it instead of the 3 inch hem. I am trying to get all the fluff possible out of the skirt. That is why I went with all 4 panels in the skirt. Most of the versions I have seen online only used 2 panels. I haven’t decided if it needs a crinoline yet or if I am up to the task of making a crinoline.
• I didn’t add a waist stay yet. I need to look into some more tutorials for this to be sure I am inserting it in correctly. I think my original try wasn’t doing what it was designed to do because I placed it too high.
So there is one “mistake” on my dress. In trying to conserve fabric and line up everything evenly, I flipped the grain line on the back pieces which changed the color order from purple above pink to pink above the purple. I didn’t notice it until I had the entire bodice assembled. All the lines are matched up pretty evenly that I don’t think this one item will be noticeable by anyone who would see the dress.  The only place you can really tell is at the side seams.   I did test out this out on my parents and they couldn’t tell until I actually showed them. Otherwise, all the plaid stripes line up very well. But for anyone else making it, all arrows need to point the same direction.

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The oddest part was the skirt lining pieces would not gather at all. I used china silk for the lining; it is possible that I needed to use a different stitch length than my normal basting length of 7. I had my two lines of basting stitches for the gathers. Every time I would pull the bobbin thread to gather, the fabric would just slip out of the stitches. I got some of it gathered properly. For the parts I couldn’t get to gather well, I had lightly gathered and sort of pleated it into the area I wanted.

I absolutely adore this dress. It has the potential of knocking the coral Simplicity 5267 from 1963 (https://sewbeading.wordpress.com/2012/04/09/simplicity-5267-1963-dress/) out of the position of my favorite dress I have made. But that is a tough competition. I can realistically see me making this dress again if the right fabric came along or if I had another special occasion requiring a new dress. It could be a cute cotton summer dress but the weight of the cotton material could be an important factor to consider. My silk taffeta was fairly thin and very crisp. So a thick cotton would probably not work easily. For a thicker cotton to work, the skirt would definitely need to be re-drafted so that it was lighter. All the skirt gathers would weigh it down too much.
I wonder if it would work as well in a knit fabric. Knits are not one of the recommended on the pattern envelope. I would imagine the bodice would work in a knit. The gathered skirt is very questionable. I just don’t have the experience with sewing knits to be positive if it would work. Last summer I had troubles finding appropriate sun dresses to wear to work when I had an allergic reaction to scented laundry soap. This style would be very work appropriate if made in a knit fabric.
Vogue 8789 should work well as a base for a fitted costume bodice. I had made a French maid costume from a different pattern before and felt that the top was not the most flattering. This bodice would have looked a lot nicer than the puffy one in my costume pattern envelope which made me look like a burnt marshmallow.
A special thanks to my co-workers. Not only did they allowed me to dress up and get my project pictures taken at their Wednesday night social but they also used my ultra fussy camera. Trust me, that camera is a pain. I have threatened to replace it multiple times. There was a reason it was in clearance when I bought it. It doesn’t like not using a flash, doesn’t take pictures immediately after taking one (the wait sometimes means I miss what I wanted) and so much more pickiness. Don’t worry about the dress. I changed immediately after the pictures. I didn’t want to chance spilling anything on my pretty silk dress. It is a nice change from me having to figure out where in my house to do pictures; hopefully you enjoyed the pictures too.  Granted I took pictures of it at home too by myself.
Next up was suppose to be Vogue 2960, but I left my tracing paper out at my parents’ house which means I can’t work on fitting changes this weekend. So I will probably work on the Cynthia Rowley top in rayon challis instead over the weekend.