Friday, June 29, 2012

Jean Paul Gaultier - Take 2

In honor of the exhibit, I decided to wear my Shoes of Death.

Though I did see the Jean Paul Gaultier exhibit when Margy was here, there was a blogger meetup to see it and I couldn't resist another visit with some great local sewists.

Amy has already written up our gathering and wow, she got some great photos with a real camera. (I tend to use my iPhone for these things. The pics are good, but they are not Digital SLR good.)

Because this was my second time, and it's a huge exhibit, I decided to zoom right to the middle. This is when I started to overload last time and the second half of the exhibit includes my favorite rooms: the ethnic room, the punk room (with the "runway show"), and the movie room. This allowed me to absorb things I had missed last time around.

First up is this grey fleece jacket. It is probably the most wearable piece in the exhibit, at least for this sewist. There is black ribbing on the hem and pockets, and black trim all over it. The ribbing is probably on the wrists too, but they were obscured by enormous silver bracelets and long strands of (fake?) hair.

I lightened this picture to show the swing back and the pointed, embellished, hood.

I also lightened this picture to show a bit more of the hood.

We've moved on to the punk room. See that punk on the right wearing the tulle skirt and leather jacket? I thought the detailing on the tulle skirt was very cool. Though made from layers of cream tulle, it has denim detailing.

Just look at the closeup of the front of the skirt. It features black top-stitching, and a "hidden" button placket, just like the classic 5-button fly Levis. It even has metal rivets. In tulle.

It's hard to see, but I was trying to get a picture of the back of the skirt. You can just make out the denim-style back pocket, complete with top-stitching.

In the punk room there was also a runway with moving spotlights - I had to try and time my photos to the spot lights since the room was dark and we weren't allowed to take flash photos. My friend ReAnn had asked me what I had thought of the "button dress", but I had missed this one on my last visit, so I kept my eye out for it this time.

What is cool about this dress is that the stripes, all the cream detailing that you see, is achieved with buttons.

Another cool feature of this exhibit, is that for each piece in the exhibit, there is a plaque stating how many man hours were required to create the piece. The button dress required 65 hours.

The last room is the movie room. I really enjoyed watching the collaged video showing his costumes from all sorts of movies and TV shows. I watched that twice. ;)

I forget which movie this is from but I think either of my daughters could rock this piece. For prom, maybe? ;)

We ended up in the museum cafe, where we gabbed for about three hours! It was serious fun.

I just had to feature Vanessa and her son, Dominick. Vanessa knitted Dominick's pants, and sewed his incredibly cute jacket and hat. (That plaid is from FabricMart and I thought I had recognized it! In fact, I think I have some of it.) Isn't he precious? What a cutie patootie.

It was a bit difficult to get these pics because Dominick had some sartorial issues with Jean Paul Gaultier. Or maybe he was forced to leave the punk room before he'd finished taking notes. Or maybe he'd had enough of parental gabbing. ;)

I still haven't cooked, but I made an apple pie!

I used this recipe but I found it to be way too sweet. Oh well. Even a mediocre apple pie is better than no apple pie at all. (It wasn't for guests, so I didn't worry about making the crust pretty.)

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Liberty Shirt with Pulled Collar #2

I recently made a Libery Top with Pulled Collar. I mostly liked the collar, but felt it was too tall for my neck. So I decided to make it again, this time shortening the neck by 3/4". This works better for me, I think.

This fabric, which was fabulous to sew, is a textured cotton from Emma One Sock. EOS sold out long ago, but I recently saw it for sale on the Sewing Workshop site. I purchased the buttons for another project at Hart's in Santa Cruz, when I was on my way to a sewing retreat. I like their little cross-hatched design.

This amuses me.
I haven't cooked in months.
This cayote squash was purchased in maybe January for a pot of soup. The cayote, now called Gerold, decided to sprout. When I took this picture, a couple weeks ago, I measured and the tendril was 3 feet, 1 inch, not including the squash.
Gerold has been composted. I like to think Gerold is happily growing away on some compost pile.
I still haven't cooked.

I've been busy at work and this weekend will be busy. A blogger meet-up at the Jean Paul Gaultier exhibit and some daughter time. I hope you have a good one!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Artistry in Fashion 2012

Artistry in Fashion is one of my favorite events of the year. I have already put it on my calendar for this year.

I've talked about it before, but in case you missed it: It's a one-day event that benefits the fashion department at Canada College. It is held in Redwood City at their beautiful campus (about an hour south of SF and right off Hwy 280). In fact, they take over parts of the campus.

This year the guest speaker is Marsha McClintock, the owner of Saf T Pockets. There will be a fashion show of garments made from her patterns.

During the day, the fashion department is open for tours and, usually, a couple in-depth talks also given by in the fashion classroom by the guest speaker.

But my favorite aspect of the completely fun day is the shopping! Many booths will be selling juried treasures, including some wonderful lagenlook designers. And this year, for the first time, my friend Sue (whom I have mentioned in several posts) will be selling her handmade felt and straw hats!

If you plan to be in the area, save the date of September 29th! I will see you there. :)

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Busty Resources and Dyeing Buttons

Yes, I have sewn a couple things but have not taken pics, so no posts yet. That is unusual for me - I usually get right to the pics.

Resources for the Busty

I have created a page (available from the top of my blog) of Resources for the Busty. If you have other resources to recommend, please let me know. I don't intend for this to be an exhaustive list, which is a pain to maintain, but a list of useful resources that, either I have used/created, or that will save me from explaining techniques, such as rotating darts. (I do a lot of dart rotation, which is very useful and very fun!)

Dyeing Buttons

Closeup of dyed buttons, next to an undyed button.

Also, there was interest from my last post on more information about dyeing buttons. Over two years ago, I remember seeing some blogs, or websites (I can't remember, exactly) on dyeing buttons. The sites I saw used plastic buttons, which seem to take dyes quite eagerly. I had a lot of mother of pearl buttons purchased inexpensively at Fabrix, and wanted to give it a try. But, like so many other natural things, mother of pearl seems less eager to take the dye - instead of red, I got a pretty pink. (I'm sure there are dyes out that that will work better on mother of pearl, but I haven't researched it. It will probably require cooking the buttons.) I do like the results, and have not gone back and tried again with plastic buttons, because I didn't have any white plastic buttons lying around. :)

The technique I used was to take a plastic cup and spoon. Pour some liquid Rit dye (it might have been dissolved Dylon, but I think it was Rit) into the cup, and add the buttons. Stir occasionally. Because the buttons didn't take much of the dye, and I wanted more of a red button, I ended up letting that cup sit on my kitchen counter for weeks. It didn't help. I finally emptied the cup, rinsed them thoroughly, let them dry, and put them in the button box.

If you google "dyeing buttons" you will find a bounty of resources, but here are a few to get you started:

If you have any additional useful resources, please list them in the comments section.

Happy Tuesday!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Liberty Shirt with Pulled Collar

One of my local sewing pals, Sara, saw this collar on a RTW boutique tunic. She reverse engineered this interesting treatment and shared it with me.

It's a straight collar, with no stand. There is a long bias tie, sewn at the CF of both fronts, and exiting through buttonholes at CB. You can pull the tie and knot it at the back. When you pull it, the fronts of the collar turn inward.

I decided to use the Liberty top as a vehicle for the collar.

I wasn't sure how this would look on me, as I don't have a particularly long swan-like neck, so I decided to use this cotton shirting from FabricMart, as a test fabric. I think it looks ok on me, though it would be even better on a long necked woman with short hair, I think. I may make it again, but I'd use a linen fabric or something more edgy.

Closeup of dyed buttons, next to an undyed button.

I have a lot of these mother of pearl buttons in my button box, as they were very cheap at Fabrix. Long ago, maybe two years ago, I threw a bunch of these buttons in a cup of red dye. (Dylon, I think. Or maybe liquid Rit.) I left the cup on my counter for weeks, hoping the buttons would turn red. They did not turn red. They turned pink. I don't sew with much pink fabric, but the shade was perfect for this shirting.

Before I took most of the hangar shots, I pinned an original, undyed, mother of pearl button near the shaded buttons so you can see the subtle shading of the dyed buttons.

Closeup of tie in the back collar.

Closeup of collar.

Hangar shot

One of Our Own Goes Corporate

Do you know Robin, of a little sewing, and also an active poster on Stitcher's Guild? I really like Robin and have followed her for a long time. When I took that fabric road trip a year ago last April with Peggy, we visited A Fabric Place (aka Michael's) in Baltimore. I knew that Robin worked nearby, so I arranged that we meet for lunch and a subsequent run to the renowned fabric store. I later blogged about it.

Well, Robin has been sitting on some exciting news which she has finally announced. Someone at Vogue Pattern Magazine was following her blog, and offered her a job as an editor!! You can read about it on her blog, which is going on hiatus for the time being.

She started her new position today, and is now living in a cozy little New York apartment. I am just busting with pride. One of our own (and by that, I mean a hobby blogger) has infiltrated the corporate sewing world in the very best way. I can now say I know an editor at Vogue Pattern magazine. Did I mention that I'm Busting.With.Pride???

You go, girl! I can't wait to see what you will be up to and to see your smiling mug peeking out from the pages of Vogue Pattern mag! I will miss your blog, but I'm sure we'll be hearing from you!

Jean Paul Gaultier and Margy

Stunning, no? Never have I seen anyone receive so many unsolicited compliments from complete strangers. It was fun to move in that "sphere of elegance"!

Some months ago, my blogger friend, Margy, asked if I knew of anyone who could help her with a pants draft. (That link takes you to her discussion of the subject.) She realized that she was having consistent problems with the fit of the backs of her pants (which she didn't realize until she started photographing herself from behind).

"Yes!", said I.

I knew that Lynda Maynard, who is located in the Bay Area and well known as a fit expert, could help. I gave her Lynda's email address (which can be obtained from Kenneth King's website) and they made plans for Margy to come to the bay area so they could meet. Even better, they decided that Lynda would draft the pant, giving Margy some time to play!

We crammed a lot into our limited time. I was pretty exhausted by the end of it.

Along with Jillian, we saw the Jean Paul Gaultier exhibit at the De Young Museum. Loved it!

I loved this suit at the beginning of the exhibit. In front, a rather conventional linen suit. In back, it's painted with a nude male form. The derriere is covered with an actual pair of denim cutoffs, sewn into the side seams. Fun!

Another piece I loved. From the front, a beautiful French-inspired striped top.

From behind, you can see that the stripes are strips of black and white fabrics...

and are released at the waist...

and fall to the floor in a ribbon-like train. Love!

It is a fabulous exhibit and I will definitely be seeing it again before it leaves for Europe in August. You can see a few more of my photos on Imgur, read Jilly Be's great blog post on the exhibit, and see Margy's photo album of the exhibit.

We separated as we meandered through the exhibit, in the way that one does when absorbed by whatever tickles her fancy. When I exited, Margy and Jilly Be were waiting at one of the benches. We sat and chatted for a bit, when, surprise of surprises, who should approach us but two of my favorite sewists, Ann Smith and Barbara V! (Ann's link takes you to her blog post on our meeting and Barbara's link, who is blogless, takes you to her reviews on Pattern Review.

I had met Ann in the last year, but have wanted to meet Barbara for ages, so it was a delightful surprise to see them both! Barbara is wearing the new Marcy Tilton dress, which she hasn't reviewed yet, but it was adorable on her.

Taken just before Barbara and Ann walked by!

More Trippen Goodness

We ate

We drank

We shopped for fabric at Stone Mountain & Daughter. At the cutting table, we were approached by Suzan (the "& Daughter" part of the business) who asked if she could take a picture of us for her Facebook page. She said she loved the fabrics we selected and how "elegant we looked." I was not elegant, but was basking in the sphere of elegance. ;)

Best of all, at the end of the visit, Margy had a perfectly fitting pants muslin!

with Lynda Maynard

You can read more about Margy's visit on her blog.

Margy's visit made me acutely aware of how lucky I am. I am grateful to have such a wonderful community, my local sewing community (you know who you are!), as well as the extended sewing community I enjoy through the internet. I am lucky to have such wonderful resources, including great fabric stores and also great places to snoop shop. I am also lucky that San Francisco is a destination for so many sewing buds that I am able to meet when they are in town.

Margy's visit also made me aware of a wardrobe hole. I need more clothes for this sort of occasion - when I need to up the ante in the "casually elegant" department.

I have two garments I need to blog, but have just been too busy. Stay tuned!