Tag Archives: Thakoon

Completed: A Luscious Silk Anna

28 Aug

Hey guys. I would like to introduce you to Anna, my newest piece for the Mood Sewing Network.

Anna Maxi

So, Oona and Sonja originally planned this silk challenge, in which they both would make Anna dresses with a notoriously difficult fabric. Once I got wind of what was going on, I walked straight into that party and invited myself to be the third wheel. I can’t help it; I love being part of a Mood Fabrics sandwich. Especially when it involves Thakoon Crepe de Chine. I mean, COME ON.

Anna Maxi

So, as we all know at this point – this is the Anna dress, the newest offering from By Hand London. For mine, I decided to try my hand at the maxi version with the slash neckline, after getting good results with my wearable muslin shorter version. Since the dress itself is very simple, it was the perfect excuse for getting my hands on the aforementioned silk Crepe de Chine.

Anna Maxi

Anna Maxi

I’ve never sewn with this type of fabric before, so I was admittedly a little nervous. Would I regret my decision?

Anna Maxi

Anna Maxi

Really, though, it wasn’t so bad! The crepe texture of this fabric actually made everything a LOT easier – it gave the pieces something to “grab” onto (as opposed to being all slinky and slippery all over the place). For cutting, I did pin my selvedges together to keep everything intact, and I used a lot of pins on the actual pattern pieces as well. One protip – make sure you use silk pins; this stuff is very delicate and normal pins may leave holes! I also used a microtex/sharp needle on my machine. The fabric fed through very smoothly (again, thanks crepe, for your grabby lil hands!) and it pressed with very little fuss. I like this stuff!

Anna Maxi

Anna Maxi

Construction was very straightforward. I finished every seam with a french seam, and tackled miles of blind stitching by hand along the thigh split, sleeves, and bottom hem (I just want y’all to know that I watched the Great British Sewing Bee while doing this, and as a result I am celebrity-in-love with Patrick. Don’t tell Landon.). The facing and zipper edges are finished with pinking – I actually deliberated on this a lot, pinking isn’t necessarily my favorite seam finish, but I felt it was important that the edges were not detectable from the outside of the dress as this silk is very thin. Fortunately, it doesn’t want to unravel much so I’m not concerned about that.

Anna Maxi

I also stabilized the slash neckline with scraps of selvedge from the silk – just pinned them within a bit of the seam allowance and staystitched them down with a tiny stitch. Keeps things nice and gape-free!

“Hold the phone, Lauren – did you say thigh high split???”

Anna Maxi

Uh huh, I sure did.

Anna Maxi

Truth, I normally don’t have much of a reason in my life to wear something like a floaty silk maxi dress with a thigh split. However, it was a fun project and I am totally fine with scheming up date ideas as an excuse to give this silk lady the exposure she deserves! Do you think eating pizza in this dress would be the worst idea ever? 😉

Anna Maxi

Anna Maxi

Now, I leave you with some walking photos. What would this post be worth without a couple action shots, amirite?

Anna Maxi
Anna Maxi

WOULD YOU JUST LOOK AT HOW THAT SILK FLOATS AND FLOWS.

Finally, here I am giving my best Angelina Jolie impression:
Anna Maxi

What do you think? Silk Anna yeah, or Silk Anna fuck yeah?

Psst! Mood Fabrics is running a one day flash sale for 20% off fabrics sitewide! If there was ever a good time to dip your toes into the world of silk, that would be now.

Advertisements

Completed: The Simone Dress

19 Jul

Can we talk about Victory Patterns today?

Simone Dress

Specifically, let’s talk about the Simone.

Simone Dress

This is new for me in two ways – a new pattern company (well, new to me) and a new shape. Seriously, guys, I do NOT wear these loose-fitting dresses… I feel like my body gets swallowed up in the fabric and I lose my waistline, which just isn’t a good look for me. But I’ve been wanting to try this pattern since it was first released… I’m not even ashamed to admit that 100% of the reason was because the girl modeling this shit is a fucking BABE. For real. Go have a look and try to tell me otherwise. I’ll wait for you to come back.

Simone Dress

I don’t think this dress pulls me quite that far into babe-ville, personally – it’s still not totally the best shape for me – but I’m surprised at just how much I like it!

Simone Dress

For my Simone, I cut the size 2 and decided to add piping and a couple pops of contrast. Originally, I had the whole front yoke purple (like the racerback), but after I finished sewing the piping on, I pinned everything together, stood in front of the mirror… and realized how weird it looked. Like I was wearing a big, purple bib. I think the contrast yoke is a good look (the version of the top has a contrast yoke), but not with my particular fabric choices. So I ripped that shit out and made my yoke in the same fabric as my main fabric, with a contrast placket, racerback, neck binding and piping.

Simone Dress

I did have to make a couple of modifications to the pattern – namely, the original length of the shoulder straps and racerback was much too long, making the armholes sit too low (like exposing a good 1″ or more of of bra too low). Since I’d already sewn on the armhole binding at that point and I didn’t feel like ripping it out (so sorry, so lazy), I pinched out about 5/8″ at the shoulder seam and another 5/8″ out of the center of the racerback. Honestly, I should have considered these adjustments BEFORE I cut my fabric – I’m petite and I generally have to shorten those areas – but my quick fixes worked just fine, I think.

Simone Dress

The only drawback was that I now had a weird seam right across the middle of the racerback. I covered it with a little tube of my main fabric. Done and done!

Simone Dress

I also shortened the back of the hi-lo hem – it was a little too long on me, almost hitting my ankles. I did not shorten the front of the dress; that is the original length.

Simone Dress

I will admit, I didn’t care much for this dress while I was sewing it. I think it’s mostly my fabric choice, but this reeeeally looks like pajamas to me. And something about the shape of the tab reminded me too much of a tiny tie, which was throwing me off. It wasn’t until I completely finished the dress and put it on that I decided I liked it. Actually, scratch that – I LOVE it. I don’t even care if it makes me look sorta preggers from the side. This shit is COMFY and it feels amazing to wear during this heat wave.

Simone Dress

I do think the instructions on this pattern were a bit lacking, and definitely earn it that “intermediate” mark. The diagrams were mostly helpful, but there were a few that made absolutely no sense to me at all. Some of the wording was a little off, and there were a couple steps that were completely missing (such as sewing the button on the tab to anchor it down. At least… I think you’re supposed to sew a button there, or at least invisibly tack it down??). The hardest part was deciphering the pleating instructions – the diagrams showed them sewn in one direction, but the photos showed the opposite.

Simone Dress

Still, with that being said… this dress took a couple afternoons to sew. It’s not hard and you can always hit up another resource if you get stuck.

Simone Dress

Shoulda topstitched that armhole binding in purple, but I didn’t. Oh well.

Simone Dress

Isn’t this fabric fun, though? It’s another design from my new favorite new-heard-of-’em-before-Mood designer, Thakoon. Just like my previous piece of Thakoon loveliness, this stuff is super soft, super drapey, and feels like pure love on my skin. It is a little bit on the translucent side, but as long as I wear nude colored underthings, it doesn’t seem to be too noticeable.

Simone Dress

I used a gorgeous purple sateen to sew all the contrast. This one is soft and lightweight with a rich color and no stretch. I used the wrong (aka non-shiny) side to sew the tab, the neck binding and the racerback, and the shiny side to make the piping. Looking at the fabric as one piece, the two sides are quite different… but when looking at the dress as a whole, you can’t really distinguish much between sides. Oh well!

Simone Dress

This is just a random button from my stash. I thought it looked good!

Also, JUST IN CASE YOU WERE WONDERING…

Simone Dress

This dress looks awesome belted!

Simone Dress

I know so many of y’all are probably groaning so hard at my love affair with belts on everything (sorry, not sorry), but I’m actually really surprised at how well the shape looks with a cinched belt. It totally changes up the look!

Simone Dress

Personally, I plan on embracing the dress as-is, in all it’s flowy goodness… but for those of you who have been hesitant to try this pattern due to the volume at the waist, perhaps you can consider this as a solution!

Simone Dress

I can’t wait to try more patterns from this company! I already have the Lola (which, sadly, is going to have to wait until the weather cools down a bit!), but I’m also loving the Nicola too.

Who else loves Victory Patterns? Let’s fawn over them together!

Completed: Birthday Tania Culottes

24 Jun

I never thought I would say this… but… YAY CULOTTES!!!

Tania Culottes

These culottes come courtesy of not one, but TWO awesome birthday gifts I got back in May.

Tania Culottes

I used Megan Nielsen’s Tania Culottes pattern to make these bad boys up. The pattern was a gift from reader Carla (she doesn’t have a blog yet, but there’s her Instagram!). I had to wait first because this pattern is wildly popular – it was sold out, and it appears to be sold out again, ha! – but I like to think it was worth the wait. This is such a fabulous little pattern, it’s very easy, but it sure doesn’t look it!

Tania Culottes

I cut the size XS, keeping the length also on the XS. The length should really look more like a mini, but on my short lil’ legs it’s *almost* appropriate for work (I say almost, but not quite :P). This pattern was seriously fast to make – I breezed through it in a couple of hours.

Tania Culottes

The engineering on this pattern is SO COOL. It actually looks like I’m wearing a floaty little circle skirt…

Tania Culottes

… but they are indeed culottes! With a crotch seam and everything!

Tania Culottes

One thing I will mention that was not written in the instructions is that you reeeeeally need to let this sucker hang for 24 hours before you hem. Since the skirt is a circle (or half circle, or whatever, I can never tell with these things!), the bias along the hem leads for some crazy settling. I had to cut quite a bit off to get it even, and still it’s not exactly perfect. Better, but not perfect.

Tania Culottes

I think the fabric is what really makes these, though. Isn’t it lovely? THAT was a gift from Kristi, a giftcard to Mood, which I immediately used to buy me some of that Thakoon cotton everyone is raving over. And, you know, after handling this fabric during the making (and wearing!) of my culottes, I gotta say… the rave reviews are there for a reason. This stuff is AWESOME. It is the silkiest, softest cotton (my mom was shocked when I told her it was just 100% cotton… and she’s a seamstress, too! She knows her fabrics!), but it’s not slinky to handle at all. It presses well and while it’s lightweight/sheer-ish, it’s opaque enough to not need a lining. I kind of wish I’d bought several yards of the stuff. I may anyway, when I get my next Mood allowance.

Tania Culottes

Srsly, I wish I could cut a little swatch to send to each of you! It is THAT amazing!

Tania Culottes

I didn’t bother to match the stripes on the CF or CB seams, but I don’t think it’s really noticeable? The folds in the circle skirt do a good job of hiding that, ha.

Tania Culottes

Anyway, I looove my new culottes! I cannot wait to try these out while riding my bike. Gonna feel like a floaty cycling goddess, y’all. Again, thank you SO SO SO MUCH, Carla and Kristi, for making my culotte dreamz come true~~

Now, on a totally unrelated note, let’s have a cat story!!

Untitled
(I know, the side of my house looks SUPER white trash, bear with me here…)
On Friday, I hear this awful/scared mewing from outside the house. I looked out the back door and there was a tiny kitten on the porch! He ran when he saw me. All that night, I could hear him but I couldn’t figure out where he was hiding, until I realized there was a tiny hole in the crawl space under the house (this picture was taken after I pulled out all the bricks in the crawl space, fyi!).

Untitled

I eventually caught him when I brought Amelia outside. He just ran straight to her! (Amelia, on the other hand, wants NOTHING to do with him. Bitch.) We brought him inside, gave him 3 baths (he was covered in fleas, poor thing!) and he seems pretty happy now. He gets really scared if you leave the room and he can’t see you, but I try to carry him around with me because I don’t want him interacting with Amelia until I know for sure whether or not he has any kitty-diseases. She’s vaccinated and on flea/tick/worm meds, but still. You never know!

Untitled
Untitled
Untitled

So now I have this kitten. I have no idea how old he is – he seems really young, though. We’ve been calling him Theodore.

Untitled
Untitled

I wish I could keep him, but I can’t afford the bills & additional pet deposit that he would cost me – not to mention, Amelia is REALLY unhappy about sharing her space with another animal. Fortunately, I think my brother & sister-in-law are going to adopt him 🙂 She’s taking him to the vet right now to make sure everything checks out, and I may hang onto him for a week or so until they move into their new house. Fingers crossed that everything works out! He’s super sweet and cuddly.

Untitled

Here we are trying to take a picture this morning. As you can see, Theodore wasn’t feelin’ it 😉