Sunday, 19 February 2017

Banyan with block printed fish

I'm not sure if this is historically accurate enough to be called a banyan, but if not it's still pretty close.

 For print class we had to block print a border design and sew something with it. It had to be done in at least 2 colours, with the lightest being printed first, and then part of the linoleum block carved away and the next colour printed on.
A picture of a different block I carved,
because I forgot to photograph my fish block.
 I did a skeletal fish design with waves, in 3 colours. (The design in the above photo is being printed with ink, but for my fish print I used dye paste.)
First 2 colours printed.

All printed.
 The dye paste really didn't want to go on evenly, so it's a bit patchy.

I based my pattern on several different extant banyans/dressing gowns. The edges of the panels go straight down, so that the bottom corners are all right angles and the border design can be applied nicely.
A terrible photo of most of my pattern.
 For the main fabric I used what appears to be some sort of raw silk from my stash. (It smells like silk and has a squeaky texture, so I'm quite sure it is, but I forget where it came from.) The fish are printed on a fine cotton.
It's mostly machine sewn, with some hand finishing where necessary.
The border applied to the hem.
 The only interfacing is in the collar, neckline and button tabs.
 It's lined to the waist in a blue-green rayon bemberg, and a narrow facing of the main fabric extends all the way to the hem. These are all turned in and hand sewn to the inside.
Lining, with fish print facing.

Fish on the ends of the sleeves.

Finished lining. You can also just barely see the very small collar.
The bottom back panel is one large rectangle pleated into the top piece.
The hem is bound in dark blue linen, which I put through the bias tape folder.

 It fastens with 2 blue plastic buttons.

 I like it a lot more than I thought I would! It's quite comfortable, and doesn't keep coming undone like bathrobes that tie shut do.

Tuesday, 7 February 2017

Black waistcoat with hidden dinosaurs

Most of you probably don't know this, but I do a lot of really crappy dinosaur drawings. A LOT. My best friend and I have a blog called Shitty Dinosaur Drawings, and I post on it quite often.

Since we did silk painting in surface design class last month, I did a bunch of terrible dinosaurs on a piece of silk satin.
Outlines done in resist with black dye.
Most of my outlines came out a little bit too thick, but at least the dye didn't bleed over them.
The finished fabric, all filled in with more dye and steamed.
It needed to be a lining for something! So I made a waistcoat. It's a plain black dupioni waistcoat, from a 1790's-ish pattern.
There wasn't quite enough dinosatin for a complete lining, so I had to piece a bit of black satin to the tops of the front pieces.
Several dinosaurs lost their faces in the cutting.
It's mostly machine sewn, with the hem and armholes finished off by hand.
I used small aluminum buttons of unknown origin. The plating is wearing off, but they look okay from a distance.
The back is a bright green raw silk from the stash, and since there was already nothing historically accurate about this garment, I added a small appliqué of another silk dinosaur I had drawn earlier on my sample piece.

Sadly, it has some fit issues. It's too narrow in the hips, comparatively baggy in the upper back, and gapes way too much around the armholes. This causes it to ride up and wrinkle in the front, which is very annoying.
It's probably because I foolishly used a pattern from the fashion show that was fitted to one of my models, and didn't alter it enough. Oops. I also didn't interface the front enough, so it's definitely one of my less good waistcoats.
I will hopefully take in the seams at some point to make it fit better.

Hey….. wanna buy some dinosaurs?

Sunday, 29 January 2017

Black Breeches

I finished a pair of black breeches! They're mostly made of a cotton blend of some sort that I got on clearance years ago.
I lined the front flaps and waistband with a silvery cotton print, the plackets and corner pockets are plain weave cotton, and the welt pockets are a different cotton print because I ran out of the plain black cotton.
 The construction is mostly the same as the pink pair, but without the lining.

All the exposed seam allowances are serged. The fabric is fairly cheap and has some stretch in one direction, so I didn't think a lining and covered buttons were worth the time.
I used 4 different kinds of plastic buttons, because my stash doesn't have many big matching sets of shank buttons.

 Even though these have no lining, they still took quite a bit of time. Breeches have so many seams!

The "watch fob" is a pendant I found at Michaels,
which I intend to post about once I add some tassels and better ribbon to it.

I only did 2 Historical Sew Monthly challenges last year, so I hope I can do better this year. These breeches fit with challenge #1.

What the item is: A pair of fall front breeches.

The Challenge, and how this item fulfills it: #1, Firsts & Lasts. The breeches were the last item needed to make this outfit wearable.

Fabric/Materials: Black cotton mystery blend with a bit of stretch one way, 2 different mostly black cotton prints, and a black plain weave cotton.

Pattern: Made by me, based on one from The Cut of Men's Clothes.

Year: Late 18th century.

Notions: Heavy canvas interfacing, woven fusible interfacing, plastic buttons, thread.

How historically accurate is it?  Not very. The pattern is accurate but the materials, serged seam allowances, and machine sewing are definitely not. My pink pair is much more accurate.

Hours to complete: I don't know. I should keep a time sheet for the next pair I make.

First worn: January 29th, 2017

Total cost: $0. Everything was stash stuff.
I need to get a walking stick so I can pose properly.

Tuesday, 24 January 2017

Linen nightgown of great enormity

 Another UFO completed! This nightgown sat with only 2 seams sewed for over a year, but now it's done. I actually finished this over a month ago, but didn't get around to taking pictures of it until this week.
 I got 2m of this embroidered linen on clearance years ago. The embroidery is only along one edge.
Machine embroidery that I did not do.
 There's not much to say about the construction, since it's basically the exact same as my shirts, but bigger and longer. I used the entire 2m piece for the main body, and a similar plain white linen for the rest of the pieces.
I was quite proud of how nicely the edge stitching on the shoulder gusset turned out.
You can see a slight difference in the colour and weave of the 2 different linens.
It's all machine sewn except for the inside finishing on the collar and cuffs. All the seams are either French or flat felled.

The narrow hems on the ruffles were annoying to sew by machine, but
came out mostly straight.
The buttons are Dorset buttons made with small plastic rings and white embroidery floss.
The yardage was very wide, so it comes down to my ankles.

It's very huge, and quite comfortable, aside from the synthetic embroidery thread being slightly scratchy. I'd like to make more nightgowns, though perhaps a bit less wide.