Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Back From Paris (Already)

I knew that our time in Paris would fly and it did! It was everything we thought it would be and more.Here are a few of pics and then on to fabric related musings.

In front of the gates to Versailles

The Louvre

In front of Chanel and yes I went in, and was very courteously treated.

One of the windows at Chanel.

Another one.

I examined every piece with hungry eyes. .The workmanship was so exquisite that I almost felt discouraged for my own poor garments.No photos allowed of course.

A very nice young sales person even unlocked the door that leads to Mademoiselle Chanel`s workshops and apartment to show me the famous staircase where Coco used to sit and watch the "defile" of her creations. I was very impressed with the treatment I received there in comparison to the Ritz.

My husband in front of the Ritz before we went in and were promptly escorted out!!! (Ce n'est pas permis)

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On our last day,we went to Monmartre where there are streets of nothing but fabric stores! I was so excited I couldn't concentrate on what I wanted to buy. I also forgot to take pictures but everywhere you saw signs that said coupons. Coupons had a different meaning here . It meant cuts of fabrics left over from designer workshops.This nice gentleman kindly explained this to me and suggested a piece of cashmere coating (3 metres for 30 euros) and I also found this gorgeous coupon of rich red wool double knit, again 3 metres for 30 Euros at his shop.That's all I bought as there simply wasn't anymore room in my luggage for more and my poor Dh was the one who had to lug these pieces around.

A few pics of fabric stores.This one was called Reine and the fabrics were yummy.

The week went all too fast but we were both glad to come home as we were exhausted and we decided we should have taken our dream trip to Paris when we were younger.

I'll leave you with a lovely view of the Eiffel Tower at night taken from our boat ride on the Seine.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

A Bag for Paris

Just a last quick post.
I probably have a purse of every colour you can imagine but not navy.

I really like making bags or purses although they require an awful lot
of effort,IMO.

I knew I still had one more item in me to make before out trip and since I've had this interesting piece of weathered look faux leather, which was a remnant from the Drapery Department at Fabricville, for a couple of years, I decided to make an across the body bag to take along to Paris.

I didn't use a pattern. I just layed out the fabric and the design came to me after staring at it for a while.


Fabric: Faux leather which looks like strips of fabric sewn together.
Lining: Burberry-like plaid polyester silky ( I love it!)
Interfacing: Drapery weight heavy fusible.
Hardware: Two glitzy heavy weight zippers from my stash
Two metal rings salvaged from an old piece of luggage.

Here it is and I'm very happy with the results!

The only embellishment to the outside is a zippered pocket.
The closure is simply a zipper starting at about 4""down one side ,across the top and finishing 4" down the other side. I thought this would be the best anti-thief closure to use.

I ended up making it a bit bigger than I had planned. It measures 14" by 14".

I added depth to the purse by sewing three darts at each rounded corner at the bottom of the front and back.

The straps were the hardest part to sew. neither one of my machines really wanted the job but eventually they got done.I made them long enough to wear over my head and across my chest.

On the inside I formed two pockets (one for cell phone ) by pleating a long piece of interfaced lining. The pleats give the pockets depth.

On the other side I added a zippered pocket.

A look at the inside.

So I think I'm set to go.

Talk to you when I get back.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

My New Raincoat and I'm almost Ready For Paris

Thank you all so much for the nice comments you left on my last post. I've already worn my little red jacket twice and love it and received compliments!

I have to admit that I'm getting very excited about our trip. We are leaving on the 14th (Tues.) and I'm almost too excited to function!

Now about my raincoat which turned out to be not even a little bit water resistant let alone waterproof! But that's OK cause I sprayed it with Fabrigard and am now confident it will be fine.

I had a hard time to decide on a pattern for this garment but finally settled on this Easy Vogue ( V8623)

At first look it seems an unlikely choice but I have so wanted to try this pattern and it suited the fabric.

Here, I'll show you the finished product and you can tell me if I chose wisely.

I wore it shopping yesterday and got a couple of compliments already.

The stats:

Fabric: a material called "Memory cloth" because you can coax it to hold a certain shape then smooth it out again.

Lining:a polyester satin print which is quite gorgeous,I think.

Interfacing: a medium fusible knit because that's all I had on hand that was suitable.

Buttons: variegated buttons which are perfect for the fabric which is a little irridescent.

How I adapted this pattern:I lengthened all the pieces by 13" .I simply added this to the bottom of the pattern pieces because I imagined the coat to be a little flared out at the bottom which it is.

There are no pockets on this design so I added my favorite Ssandra Betzina pockets in the same way I did to this coat.

Sewing machine needle used: A 70/10 sharp which worked flawlessly.

Thread: Gutterman all-purpose polyester thread.

Problems I encountered: I had to pick out all my edge stitching which I used to avoid having to press some of the seams because I had to otherwise use a press cloth on this fabric..The edge stitching caused puckering so it had to go.

This is a customized pattern which has separate pieces for an A,B.C and D cup.I cut the D cup but that ended up being too roomy so I had to shave some of the bust curve off. The C cup pieces would have been plenty big enough although I wear a 34 DD bra. I reveal this in case this info can be helpful to someone out there.

Here are some detail shots.

I love the way the collar stands away from the neck and the memory in the fabric keeps it that way.

I sewed the pleats at the back down about three inches so they wouldn't stick out too much. I think the back is so cute.

They are hard to see but here are the pockets.

A peek at the lining.

And a few photos of me wearing the coat and feeling a little like a character in Madmen.

It's now Saturday afternoon and I just finished making an across the body bag in a distressed leather look upholstery fabric but I'll show you that another time.

Thanks for looking in on me and I hope you're having a great weekend!

Happy Sewing from Diana

Friday, September 10, 2010

Attention Canadians!Did You Know?

There is a sewing contest at Fabricville! here is the link and the details.

I'd love to take part but I don't know if I'll have the time as I'm going to Ottawa to see Riley this fall after coming back from Paris. I have quite a few other irons in the fire too but I really encourage all to participate because the prizes are to die for!

I'll be posting my raincoat as soon as my camera battery has enough juice to finish taking photos.Right now I'm working on an across the chest handbag to take to Paris. What fun!!!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

The Little Red Jacket That's Going to Paris

Oh my! It's so hot! I'm working on a raincoat of sorts but it's not going well and I'm going to blame it on the 98 degrees and the high humidity we've had for this whole week.Enough already!

On the bright side, I did finish this little beauty.

The pattern is Vogue 1100 which I made last fall but but in a longer version.(Look here)

Here are the stats:

Fabric- a textured cotton in the yummiest red you ever saw.
Lining- a printed cotton voile in a happy fun print.
Buttons- gorgeous red buttons with a raised rope design.
Interfacing-lightweight Armo weft. (the fabric had enough weight that it didn't need anything heavier ).

The jacket went together very easily except at the bustline which was hard to ease in to the front center piece,thus a few puckers are visible but I'm not really a perfectionist so I let it go.

Here a few detail shots.

I love the collar!

I considered leaving out the back pleat but it turned out to be fine.

The turned back cuffs are really cute.

The lining really adds a nice touch doesn't it!

This is a key piece to my Paris wardrobe because I'm taking only red,white and navy pieces with a little black thrown in.That way ,I won't have to take as many shoes!

It's really very hard to know what to wear in Paris in the middle of September but I've decided to go with my summer clothes and to pack light. Wish me luck.That is such a hard thing for me to do!!!

My Dh just took this pick and got me giggling so excuse the silly expression on my face.

Look here for more pics.

The blue "raincoat is going much better now and I'm almost finished it so I'll be showing it to you early in the coming week.

I do hope you found time to sew this weekend!