Go to content Go to navigation Go to highlighted projects Go to contact

Holiday sewing update

28 December 2012, 15:51

Some (rather racy) panties

Remember how I had flu for 3 weeks earlier this month? Well lucky freakin me, because I got ill again on the first day of my holidays. I’ve essentially felt like crap since two days before Thanksgiving, arrrrgh. So on Christmas Day, I did a little bit of comfort sewing, in the form of some crazy, racy, leopard print and black lace panties.

Avert your eyes now if you’re of a gentle disposition!

I’d never buy leopard print of my own free will, but I’d bought a lingerie grab bag for a pound a while back, and this came from there, and I added some scrap black stretch lace to the sides. Nobody need know what my tastefully dressed exterior conceals…

Burda December cover dress muslin

The big project I wanted to tackle over the holidays is the Burda December cover dress (Burda Dec 2012 #112).

The final version will be sewn in pale pink viscose from Stone Fabrics, but because I needed to make some alterations on this, I wanted to do a muslin version first, this time in a flowy, lightweight crepe fabric I was gifted (for muslining!).

This pattern (which also has a longer hem length with long sleeves) has the illustrated instructions for this issue, and man do you need them! It reminded me of one of those Vogue designer patterns where it doesn’t actually look like a dress until the very last step. And because it’s asymmetric, it’s a single-layer fabric layout, meaning I had to cut this on the floor, boo.

Oh, and it’s in Tall sizing, so I had to take out the extra vertical space in the bodice to bring it back to normal sizing.

Here’s some shots of my muslin:

My only real problem with it is the sleeve – it’s way to tight in the armscye, and the long sleeve from pattern #113 is just awful – way too long even after de-Tall-ing it, and it’s tight in strange places, and it has waaaaay too much sleeve cap ease. You can see on the right (my Left) my prototype new sleeve, but ignore that it’s wrong-side out and only 3/4 length here. I fixed the small armscyce issue after these photos, too.

I’d really wanted to make this earlier in the month, but even now, I had to stop and go lie down twice during the making of this muslin! But I’m super inspired after seeing all the finished versions by Russian sewers (thanks, lakaribane!).

Vintage Couture Tailoring

And finally, I received two sewing-related gifts this Christmas – iTunes vouchers to subscribe to the iPad version of Threads magazine (the print versions cost too much in shipping, take up too much room, and I hate Taunton’s overly-aggressive renewal tactics), and Vintage Couture Tailoring.

I’d specifically asked for it after reading some reviews online, but after my initial flips through, I’m actually kinda disappointed in the book, and I feel kinda bad even saying that aloud, because the information in the book looks very good and very well thought-out.

But it only covers tailored jackets like the one on the cover. That’s it.

So if you want to sew your own jacket using fantastic, vintage techniques, you could use this book cover-to-cover as you went along, and have your very own, mini-couture course. But I don’t really wear tailored jackets/blazers, and I was expecting this book to contain a lot wider variety of techniques, more like Claire Schaeffer’s excellent Couture Sewing Techniques. I guess I was expecting info on skirts, trousers, dresses, outerwear, maybe even some millinery or embellishments, but it’s really only just about jackets.

I’m going to delve further in at my leisure with a mind to apply some of these techniques to my next coat (especially since they cover the different uses for horsehair and lambswool padding rather extensively), but it’s not really what I’d expected.

tags: , , , , ,


  1. Even the muslin version looks elegant. I really like the cut and flow of the dress. Can’t wait to see the final version.

    — Mom    Dec 28, 04:06 PM    #
  2. Its looking really good the muslin. Im sure you will sort that arm cycle problem in no time.


    — houseofpinheiro    Dec 28, 04:15 PM    #
  3. I hope you get better soon. You really have the worst of luck with the flu… I’ll try to send you some of my never-really-get-ill mojo…

    I’m curious to see that dress made up. From these pictures, I can’t really help with the armscye and sleeve issue but if you lower the armscye and get too little room for movement you might try the fix I explained at my blog when working on my coat.
    About the book… I always hesitate about buying sewing technique books, but I guess that’s just stubborn me… I do borrow them from the library. Different applications for horsehair and lambswool batting sounds pretty interesting though.

    lauriana    Dec 28, 04:39 PM    #
  4. Did you use a pattern for your ‘little knickers’? I have had a grab bag and some lace waiting for some time Now. They look lovely. Regards Pauline

    — Pauline    Dec 28, 05:13 PM    #
  5. A digital Threads subscription is a great idea, and one that I had never thought of!

    Karin    Dec 28, 06:50 PM    #
  6. I wouldn’t have thought the cover dress was so complicated…I mean…you normally write instructions! Thread online edition sounds like a cool idea…

    sewing princess    Dec 28, 09:18 PM    #
  7. Its looking great! And the only thing that bugs me more than a lousily drafted sleeve is Taunton’s rescription tactics. I subscribed to the paper version a few months ago, and had a split-second heart attack when they sent me a rescription thing just two months into the 12 months!!! WTF??? I’ll probably let it slip and move over to the ipad version like you have. Does your vintage sewing book have any info on hand-worked button holes? I’m collecting everything I can on this topic, as info is few and far between.
    Back on topic – looking forward to seeing the finished dress!

    poppykettle    Dec 29, 06:55 AM    #
  8. On the subject of couture I wondered if you have taken the craftsy couture dress course online. I have just come to the end of the classes and found Susan Khalje a wonderful teacher.

    — SHEREE    Dec 31, 03:30 PM    #
  9. I bought the Claire Schaeffer book about 5 years ago now and find it a useful resource for lining jackets etc. I wanted to have a go at drafting a long-line bra but I think the corselette instructions are too “tekky” for me. Well done on coping so well while you have been ill.

    — Patricia O    Jan 1, 05:41 PM    #

Add a comment:

  Textile help