Saturday, June 29, 2013

Storing Bobbins

I'm in the middle of re-organizing my sewing room. My mom gave me a bunch of her sewing stuff (including her serger!) and so I'm taking the time to make sure everything has a proper place.

I thought I would share with you how I cleaned up my bobbin mess. Every sewer is probably familiar with this sight:

A tangled mess of threads and if you even look at a bobbin the wrong way, it seems unwind itself. Following the advice from this blog post, I decided to use plastic tube to wrap around my bobbins.

I used 3/8" tube and cut it into pieces. I am very happy at how everything is now staying in place. And it all fits into my existing bobbin containers.

I can even handle the bobbins more easily now, since they don't unwind when I fumble with them. I think good ideas should be shared, so I'm passing this along.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Simplicity 1819 Part 2

Well, I've had a very busy past week and a half. My parents and brother came to visit me from across the country. We did lots of sightseeing and work on my house (thanks Mom and Dad!). I didn't have much time to blog, but I did finish a bit more of Simplicity 1819 for them to take back and hand over to my sister (actually, my brother is being my costume mule - thanks brother!).

Anyways, as you know from my last post, I have been making a steampunk costume for my sister. I made a test bustle and skirt and now I have finished a test shirt and corset.

The shirt was super easy to make - it's just two pieces. I also skipped hemming the sleeves and bottom.

I just use a nice grey jersey from my stash to stand in for the stretch fabric of the final shirt (probably stretch lace over tricot). My mom has just given me her serger, so the final shirt will probably be a little more finished.

The underbust corset turned out really well. I can't wait to see what it looks like on my sister. It was not hard to sew. I just took time because of the many seams.

I used two bedsheets for the outer and inner layer. I wanted to see if I could make it reversible and I think I can. I would just have to figure out how to install the panel that sits behind the laces.

For the boning, I used cable ties (I forget where I found the original idea, but it is even suggested on Wikipedia). Cable ties are those long plastic straps that you might have seen the police use on Cops to tie the hands of the people they were taking into custody (haha). I simply cut and then rounded the ends with a pair of scissors.

The cable ties are a great substitute. It would have been much harder to find and work with metal boning. Also, I imagine that the plastic is much more like what whale boning would have been like. Which makes me wonder where fashion would have gone if plastic was available when whale bones (baleen) grew scarce? Did the switch over to mostly metal boning in corsets in the Edwardian period affect the Edwardian style and the ones that followed? Would the availability of plastic have prolonged the life of the corset in mainstream fashions? hmmm....


Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Simplicity 1819 aka. "How did I get Myself into This?" Part 1

It seems to be a common thing I see on the sewing blogs I follow - someone with sewing skills is talk into sewing something by a sister, friend, loved one, etc. I've seen many wedding dresses and costumes made for this reason.

I got roped into making a steampunk-tartan dress for my sister. I'm using Simplicity 1819 for most of the costume pieces.

Side view

So far, I made a test overskirt and bustle (from old curtains). And I'm almost done a test corset and undershirt. The overskirt was actually not too hard to sew. It does take A LOT of fabric, though.

Back view

Truth be told, I'm having a lot of fun doing it. It's just a bit challenging, since my sister lives all the way in England and I can't just have her try it on while I sew.

I plan on working on this costume over the next few months and will add updates whenever I have something new. The costume has to be done for a big photoshot in Scotland in September. Wish me luck!

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Sewing: Burdastyle 03/2013 #126 Shorts

I've been wanting to show my new shorts off for awhile. I made these a few weeks ago, but then left on my trip to England. Also, the weather was lousy until a few days ago. Now, we have lots of good shorts weather.