Truebias Ogden Cami Dress Hack

If you’re wondering about the more than usual artistic vibe of this photo shoot, let me tell you that was a 11 year old on a mission “to capture the essence of the dress”. I’m not even sure I know what that means, but I’m just going with it.

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The dress whose essence is being captured here is a heavily hacked True Bias Ogden cami.

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As you can see I extended it to midi length, whilst taking out most of the width. To make striding possible I added side slits on both sides.

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The fabric is a mock suede bought on my latest trip to London in Walthamstow, my new favourite haunt for surprise fabric buys. I got 2 metres in two colours, this light blush and a beige and at 8 pounds for 4 metres I’m already sorry I didn’t buy more.

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I added a second set of spagetti strips that are attached as normal in the front and go down to the mid of the CB, just to add a little bit of extra interest. A little look at some of the details. I think/hope the pulling in the CB isn’t as bad in real life…

“Look pensively into the middle distance” my photographer, aka Child 3 said – so I did!

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BHL Kim: The Waxprint Dirndl

It’s been the day of our local festival again, and noone who’s ever been to Bavaria will be at all surprised that beer plays a major role.

However, I stuck it out with the kids and not a drop crossed my lips! Instead I went to show off my nex wax print dirndl, which started life like this:

The blouse and apron were recycled from my rtw dirndl, which you can look at in more detail here, if you are so inclined.

The story of this dirndl started last year, when I got obsessed about the thought of making a dirndl in non-traditional fabric. Now, although I live in Bavaria I don’t live a traditional kind of life and consequently don’t wear a dirndl more than once or twice a year (and, on a side not, dirndls were never really traditional attire, but started life in the 19th century as the kind of dress the towns people wore when they played at being peasant, much like today).

In order to make the dress more wearable I decided I needed to make one that was wearable on its own, with out the dirndl trappings.

So I decided on using the By Hand London Kim dress pattern for the dress. It’s cut a lot higher than a normal dirndl, which, worn without the blouse would be somewhere between undecent and undressed.

I took a lot of trouble on pattern placement and matching. The front bodice is made up out of strips of half-circles across the border of the print that were painstakingly matched to make up the full circles. At the same time this creates the criss-cross effect that on normal dirndls is normally achieved by threading a metal chain or ribbons through loops in the princess seams. Oh, those seams are piped to add an extra little embellishment

Here you can see the border of the skirt – rotate it by 90 degrees and you get half of the bodice centre.

I made the dress last year in autumn, but never got round to wearing it, so this summer it had its first few outings. I have to say I prefer the dirndl look, with the apron – I’m not crazy on a plain dirndl skirt on me, I prefer something slightly more tummy skimming. Having said that, the dress is just a lot of fun, and because the wax print I used isn’t quite as heavy as most, the dress is swishy and very, very comfortable so if the nice weather continues I’m sure it’ll get worn loads.

Burdastyle 8/2015 #120 : An Almost Crop Top

I’m posting this in the full knowledge that I should try and get proper pictures, you know, with me actually inside the top.
However, I’ve managed to not get proper pictures for the best part of three months, so maybe it’s not to be for this top.

But anyway: I made a top, in my new favourite colour Blush.

The pattern was Burdastyle 8/2015 #120, without the overlay.

I had in fact made this before, but shamefully never blogged it. The fabric was a beautiful looking poly that was so static and sweaty to wear that I wore the top two or three times and sent it on to the charity shop during my last clear out where hopefully it will find another home.

I shortened it a little bit, gently curving the front seam upwards. I also put in split hems – because I could.

The back has a CB seam (because the original pattern has a button closure), but it’s all straight, so it could easily be eliminated.

The neckband is simply the same fabric with the reverse side showing. Unfortunately it doesn’t lay quite flat, but this only bothered me during the first wear, afterwards I quickly forgot to find fault with this project. Doesn’t that happen ever so often that we are overly critical with our own projects, only to be unable to identify a few weeks later?!

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Burdastyle 12/2016 #107(ish): The Look Behind Me Top

What can I say – long time, no see and all that… I blame Instagram: after not getting it at all for years I suddenly really started enjoying it and have been snapping away on it rather than making the effort to write a proper blog post. (My Insta handle, or whatever they call these things is Said&Done Chris by the way, in case you’re interested).

But anyways, I have been sewing loads, absolute loads!! I’ve had quite a slow time at work, which is unusal for me, but is all part of a big plan, because I’m going to take a sabbatical FOR AN ENTIRE YEAR!!! starting from August. How amazing is that??!! It’s not exactly a surprise as such, I’ve been working towards this for five years, as my employer has this scheme where you can work overtime for a number of years in order to get back the hours accrued during the sabbatical, which means that I’ll be ON MY USUAL WAGES.

Yes, let me just repeat this: I’ll have a paid year off! Funnily, my colleagues don’t seem to enjoy me discussing this fact with them anymore, I can’t think why, so I thought I’ll share this with you 🙂

Anyways, I digress, sewing:

I made a little linen top, something to wear for the warmer weather that we had a couple of weeks back. I love the front with the pleats and all that – but look at the back: it has bum-ruffles:

Just thinking of bum-ruffles is enough to put me in a good mood! In fact I’ve been known to laugh out loud on the train when considering the bum-ruffles.

The pattern I used is loosely based on Burdastyle 12/2016 #107

Obviously I moved the side ruffle towards the back and left off the sleeves. And of course I didn’t make it a dress. That’s because I didn’t want a dress, I wanted a chance to use bum-ruffles. But also I wouldn’t have had enought fabric because I was refashioning this dress I made a while ago.

Again, clearly not this exact dress, but that one – I just thought you might want to look at the dress as it actually looks. It turned out to be one of the makes I really liked the theory of, but that I never wore in practice. The dropped waist just isn’t for me, I guess.

So there, back to the top, inclusive of an honorary appearance for the Brexit Coat, flamingos and all.
(Excuse the hair, by the way. Don’t know what happened there…)

The front yoke is self-lined and I even handstitched it down. And two gratuitous pictures of the bum-ruffles, because this is how I roll. And really, do you know why they are there? Because I didn’t have enough fabric to cut the back as long as I wanted it. What a lucky coincidence, ey?

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The Brexit Coat Part IV: Is Brexit a Success?

Public Service Announcement: If you are the kind who doesn’t like to listen to experts you may proceed straight to the end of this post where the ballot box awaits you.

With all things Brexit clearly there are some stormy times ahead and some nay-sayers have maintained that Brexit couldn’t be a success – however, I beg to differ, at least as far as the Brexit Coat is concerned!

The Brexit Coat is finished now (apart from the buttons that I still couldn’t make a decision on, so I have given me a protraced transitionary period in which to make further decisions. I’m hoping not to crash out onto No Button Status in two years’ time.)

During the pre-Brexit negotiations it was felt across the board that a true Brexit Coat should harbour something unexpected. Well, I was at a loss what that could be, given that I was using a very nice, but borderline boring boucle fabric.

So boring, in fact, that unbelted the coat reminds me more of Eastern European decorator’s attire than is healthy for any true Brexiteer.

So naturally …

I put some flamingoes inside!

It might just be a touch silly, but then, maybe I can inspire any other Brexit process with a little dose of silliness. It might be taking itself rather a bit too seriously, imho.

Dressform pictures:

Just some boring facts: I used Burdastyle 9/2013 #103 and I’m forever grateful to Anne, the Compulsive Seamstress who traced the skirt portion for me in the spirit of international collaboration. I significantly streamlined the sleeves, as per taking back control of the overblown mess they had become. Because it’s a Brexit Coat, you know!

The boucle is from a local shop, the flamingoes can be had from Stoff&Stil. It’s not really a dressmaker’s fabric, rather a calico, but then: flamingoes! In order to make the sleeves more slippery I cut them and the yoke in a lining fabric from my stash rather than the calico.

 

Now, I don’t want to come across all Lib-Dem, but I thought no Brexit Coat could be complete with a second referendum:

Now that you see the full terms of the Brexit Coat, is it a yes or a no? Please do vote, even if you are young or haven’t registered yet.

I’m hoping or a strong and stable verdict from you good readers, so I can keep the upper hand in the future wearing of this coat!

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Burdastyle 11/2016 #109: Isn’t it a great time to be alive?

Well, of course I know that there are many things in the world that don’t make life all that great, both on a political and personal level. But then, so many things are good about the world and my heart is overflowing with these right now!

I mean, how great is to have a quick drink down the ice cream parlour on a Saturday morning with Child 3, who, I feel, is camouflaged enough to warrant a rare appearance on these pages.

And how fab is it to be able to give an outing to the blouse that has been lingering in my wardrobe for about 6 months waiting for warmer weather.

What do you think of Child 3’s qualities as a blog fotographer? Not doing badly, don’t you think?

And my qualities as model are unparalleled, as has been discussed many times. Look how versatile I am: I can even look the other way!

But back to the blouse: It’s Burdastyle 11/2016 #109. I’d actually traced the corresponding dress pattern and then decided to make this into a blouse, so the hemlined is eyeballed rather than what is intended by the pattern.

I’m wearing a cami underneath because I felt it was still a little cold. But even without one the neckline feels perfectly fine to me, and that’s though I’m not always at one with Burda’s opinion that where there is  a neckline there’s a belly button.

The blouse is plain in the back. I used a lovely silk cotton woven. It’s quite sheer and it would have been a bugger to cut and sew if I hadn’t given it my gelatine treatment.

I also gave an outing again to my Rosa jacket – still one of the light jackets I reach for most often.

Because of the sheerness of the fabric I took some time over the interior finish. All seams are French and the neckline is faced in self fabric.

 

The sleeves are a little wide for my liking, but they have an elastic finsh and I can push them up and out of my way, so that’s fine with me. I like the little vintage touch of the front yoke with the gathering.

Let me just leave you with a few impressions of this perfect morning that made me smile!

 

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Burdastyle 8/2016 # : Pleat Front Trousers

To those of you who are waiting for news of the Brexit Coat: Rest assured that the project is in strong and stable hands and the Minister for Sewing the Brexit Coat would like to stress that while the difficulty level of choosing those buttons is in another galaxy the project is nevertheless  progressing at an appropriate speed.
But as I’m not sure how much longer I’ll be able to keep up Brexit-related analogies, let me give you some light relief: In a departure from my usual style I made some pleat front trousers.

They are one of my #sewdowndewsbury projects – in fact the only one that I went to buy fabric for specifically. I used a non-stretch woollen suiting, and when I say non-stretch I mean absolutely no give whatsoever, neither across nor perpendicular to the grain. I was a little worried about this as I’d never made or even worn trousers so relentlessly non-stretch, but it’s turned out well.

I used Burdastlye 8/2018 #111. The trousers are quite high-waisted (please note that I am high-waisted anyway, so they look rather “normal”, but on someone with a figure that corresponds more to the norm the trousers do come up high). Also the pleating is rather more pronounced than is usual. I am never sure whether this is wise on a pear-shape like me, but yolo, I’ve decided to embrace this.

I didn’t make any changes to the pattern other than scooping out the crotch curve a little. I normally add some extra room to the back, but this was not needed in this pattern – I guess the roomy front takes care of any booty issues. I think the pocket opening should move further down, so if I ever make these trousers again I have a good change of forgetting to make this adjustment ;-).

Next up: further procrastination on the Brexit front in the form of not one but three shirtdresses. Buttons pending, so don’t hold your breath!

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