Thursday, July 30, 2015

Thrift Store Cocktail Dress Refashion!

This was one of those thrift store buys that just "worked". We thrifters know the rush of excitement when we find a great dress, but when we pull it off the rack, we realize that it's going to need some work before it's wearable. 

But this dress... I tried it on and I discovered the only thing it needed was some sleeves. The fit was great, the length was perfect, AND it was half-off! 

I knew it had the potential of being a great cocktail dress... so I went ahead and bought it. 


We were given a bunch of fabric by a sweet lady, and amongst the treasures was found a piece of polyester satin that was almost perfectly matched to the gold/tan underneath the lace of the dress. SO. Sleeves were cut, using the same pattern I drafted from my spring formal gown from 2012

I constructed them using my machine, finished off the lower hems, and then attached the sleeves by hand to the dress. I didn't want to bother the little beaded trim on the bodice neckline. 

I also added a silk sash, but the lovely thing about this dress is that because there were pre-existing sash loops, I can switch up the sash whenever I please. It helps that the dress is a neutral color, so I have a wide range of colors I can play with. 

Huzzah for awesome thrift find!

Monday, July 27, 2015

5 Year Shop Anniversary!

It's been five years since I first opened my Etsy shop! So happy with the way my shop style has developed... I'm quite content with doing custom orders as my main shop fare. Certainly not the vision I had when I opened the shop five summers ago... I had dreams of having a shop crammed with ready-made items. However, it seems my expertise lies in custom orders and sewing to satisfy the customer. 

Above is a door sign I made probably five or six or seven years ago... I rather like it. I just found it stowed in a pattern envelope randomly, saved by my far-seeing mother who knew I would love to find it years down the road. So, I put it up on my wall and can enjoy my wonderful 14-15 year old art. 

In any case, thanks to all my customers who have made my shop possible! I look forward to many more years of costuming and sewing! 

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Italian Finds: Lace Collar!

This week's "Find" is what I assume to be a collar or cuff from a garment. Again, what is with Italians and their love of disassembling clothes? 

It's got a sweet little edging... 

This little collar (or whatever it once was) is one that I hope to incorporate into an heirloom piece. Someday! 

If anyone has any information whatsoever about the techniques or design on this piece, please do comment! I would love to learn more about my little "Italian Finds!

Monday, July 20, 2015

My Evil Plan

So, I have this evil plan. I'm going to make a dress for both the Halloween Dance AND the Medieval Night at my school... using stash fabrics. It won't cost me a penny because all the materials were given to me! 

Anyway, here's the design. It's a fantasy dress, inspired by the pre-Raphelite paintings of Waterhouse and Leighton. I don't really care that it's not period-accurate because sincerely, no one at my college will care. And if they do care, well, they can go sit in the stacks all day. By themselves. Listening to One Direction. 

AND HERE'S THE GORGEOUS MATERIAL. Isn't it loverly? The gold damask is for the main dress, the light gold/tan is for the ruffles and stuff, and the deep, wine red satin is for the underskirt. 

...another shot on the gold because it's so loverly... 

Yeah. I'm excited about this project. Hopefully I can get around to sewing it... I'll be busy-busy these next couple of weeks trying to get things done before school starts up! 

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Italian Finds: Linen Embroidered Tablecloth!

I get to show you one of my favorite pieces in the collection- it's hand embroidered on pure linen, and I just love the coloring/design. 

It's kind of chunky and reminiscent of a lot of vintage-y embroidery I've seen around. 

The border design is just stunning. I love the slightly chunky look! 

This is one of the center flower details... 

...and another... 

...and another! Love the little techniques and designs this sewist put into this tablecloth. It's a real treasure and I look forward to being able to use it. 

If anyone has any information whatsoever about the techniques or design on this piece, please do comment! I would love to learn more about my little "Italian Finds!"