Saturday, October 29, 2011

Snow day knockoff

This is west 38th's 300th blog post! Wow :o)

Like the rest of the east coast, we are currently getting some very heavy early season snow. It's been pretty heavy all morning and the wind is really picking up. I'm glad that it waited until this morning to snow, because last night was Lady Liberty's 125th birthday, and we enjoyed a great fireworks show for it. Here is the very very snowy view out of our window right now.


Since it's too snowy to drive to see the nieces get their Halloween costumes on for a party (which is likely cancelled, anyway, given the amount of snow we are expecting.....) I decided to break out a project I've been mulling over for a while.

I found this Derek Lam coat in a magazine at the end of the summer and loved the combination of yoke seam, powder blue, and pockets. magazine derek lam coat

Then I found a similar Derek Lam coat, in an ad that has been in a few fall magazines.

derek lam ad

Isn't it fantastic? Can you believe it's $2,000? Really?

At the NY Garment District weekend get together in September, I found some fantastic blue wool coating at Kashi's for the crazy price of $12/yard and I remembered the vintage coat pattern I had bought and then lost last year. It's longer, but I am in need of a longer coat anyway. But otherwise it's fairly similar.

coat pattern

And so I am working on a snowy day muslin. One interesting feature of this pattern is that there is a side panel with the pockets set into it, so you don't have to do welt pockets! And the seam between the side panel and the front, which has the pockets, is a 7/8" seam allowance. I've never seen that on a pattern before. I assume it's there so that you have room to slash in at the pocket corners.


Well, I am off to work on the muslin with a nice green smoothie. I am drinking these a lot for lunch: frozen banana + frozen pineapple + 1/3 cup OJ + a few handfuls of fresh spinach leaves. I am terrible at getting enough dark green leafy veggies and so this is a good & tasty way to get them in.

green smoothie

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, the jacket, take 2

Last year I made my niece Kate a little grey boiled wool military trim jacket.

Well, guess who now fits it as well &  loooooves stealing it from her big sister? ;)


Miss Anabear !


She had it on while we were washing the cars, which meant that there was a big puddle forming at the end of the driveway. Which, of course, her four year old little brother found. ;)


I'm happy to report that the Ninja costume is ALL DONE! I stopped off at Pearl River Mart in Soho this week and picked up a little pair of redembroidered slippers to complete the look. She may not be very stealthy with all the red, but she sure is rather cool looking. They're off to a Halloween party next weekend, so I'll try to get some nice pictures then.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Beware the fierce ninja!

First, there was yet another pattern change.  I was concerned about the jumpsuit & fitting a warm jacket underneath, as well as how unweildy it would be get in & out of.  So I poked around on Etsy and came up with this pattern.  I made view D (the mandarin collar top & pants view)  in the black cotton fabric I'd already bought.


It was pretty straightforward to put together - the pants are one-seam pants, which are zippy!  And the sleeve is an interesting drop shoulder design which meant that the sleeve was attached flat and then you zip up the side seams.  Of course, I  might be sewing a quick Halloween costume, but I did have slip in a silk organza snippet to reinforce the mandarin collar!


Next the patches were ironed on & then sewn down....

The back has a phoenix on it:

ninja top back

and the front has a little dragon:

ninja top front

Behold! The fierce 8 year old ninja!!

kate as a ninja

We will finish it off with a red belt & a ninja hood.  I made a size up so there's room for some winter underwear and fleece underneath. We wouldn't want a frozen ninja!! ;)

I have to say, I'm now eyeing the kimono pattern that this came with. How adorable would a teensy kimono be as a cute addition for their dress up trunk?

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Shower Curtains

Things I have not done: Finish an 8 year old's ninja costume. Figure out a decorating theme for my hatchback for said 8 year old's school Trunk or Treat extravaganza in school parking lot. Sew myself a new autumn coat. Sew myself a new black skirt.

Things I have done: dropped a bottle of pink nailpolish in my bathroom, ruining my white terry shower curtain. Discover that Amy Butler makes shower curtains (!!!!). Purchase a replacement shower curtain. Rejoice that it fits in perfectly with my bathroom - look, it even nicely coordinates with all the artwork I have in there!

amy butler shower curtain


Which reminds me, another thing I have not done - sort out a decent wide angle lens for my camera.

And one more thing that I have done, which is purchase two new blouse patterns from Colette Patterns. I'm working on embracing sewing for the wardrobe I actually wear, which given that I'm a software engineer is "jeans and a top". So my plan is to sew fewer dresses, which I never wear, and sew more tops that can be worn to work. Right after I finish that ninja costume!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Two years ago I posted about a silk 1980s Liz Claiborne dress that I was un-assembling for some refashioning. Here's the dress top, sitting on my dressform in 2009.

1980s silk liz claiborne dress

And.... I finally finished it up! Here's me with my new tank top. I added a band at the bottom that's some nice purple and black floral that I bought at Elliot Berman at the re-scheduled fabric shopping trip.

Refashioned Top

It has little buttons on the shoulders:


In those two years, I took off the puffy sleeves, folded under the armholes and stitched them down, re-did the side seams, and attached the hem band. Am I the world's slowest re-fashioner or what?

Next up, the Ninja Halloween costume for my niece! Supplies are trickling in...

Ninja costume