Friday, January 29, 2010

Process of Nana Part 2

After I had sewn the main body together I realized I had forgotten to sew the hidden pockets with flaps in.  So with  my handy seam ripper I took it all apart and sewed it together once again with the hidden pockets and flap which really aren't that bad to do.  A lot of sewing construction is knowing the order in which they need to be sewn together.  It's almost like a puzzle.  I love puzzles.

I hand sewed most of the china silk lining.  I meant to do a full lining but between the facing and getting everything to match out something just wasn't working.  Luckily there was only about an ince gap between the facing and lower lining so I was able to hand sew in some red grosgrain ribben to give it more a polished look.

As for the Skirt, I know it wasn't the right pattern for the tartan but the colors were right.  It wasn't that big of a deal to me to be absolutely perfect.  I liked this fabric best anyways.  The only thing to really watch out when using a synthetic (which I normally don't) is the tempurature of the iron.  My first waistband I melted as you can see below.
Other then that skirt was pretty simple and easy.  Just a low waisted full skirt with gathering at the wide waistband.  After I cut a new piece and reset my iron I was good to go with the fusible lining.

The thing you need to remember about fusible facing is that you don't actually ""iron" it on you "press" quite literally.  Put it on a high heat, low steam setting and put a pressing cloth on top of the facing and the fabric you are fusing together.  Using a pressing cloth insures that the high heat doesn't melt the facing since they are more often then not a synthetic type fabric/felt.  You do not want to slide the iron across to the next spot and press you want to pick it up and press on the next section.  What is the difference?  If you slide the iron while pressing you are actually stretching out the facing and the fabric which distorts the shape somewhat.

Here is the finished product.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Pom Pom trickle down

Lately I have seen a little bit of a trend with exaggerated headpieces and I love it!   I wanted to make my own.  So I got these wonderful Pom Pom Maker's from Clover.

This is another example of something more homemade from Yokoo on etsy worn by Susie from Style bubble.  I think it was this picture that made me fall in love with the idea.

They are actually super easy to make it just takes the gusto to use some really nice Roving or yarn to make some Pom Pom that's are truly Unique and artistic.   This is going to be another very simple DIY class that I want to do.  I've made up a bunch of Samples of different things you can do with the Pom Pom's besides head pieces.

I need to make a couple Examples for the Men also so the more stylish can see how versatile these little beauties are.

Here are the ones that I had made, a bow type pin, a headband and hair clip.

Monday, January 25, 2010

The process of Nana Part 1

So as a lot of people already know I am a little obsessed with the Manga called NaNa.  I am even re-creating one of her outfits for Ohayocon.    This is the post showing my progress on the project.

It is unfortunately somewhat knocking off a Vivienne Westwood design which does irk me a little.  I hate to me imitating anyone but in my defense this is considered a costume.  I didn't go balls to the walls and get red wool coating like I could have and I picked a herringbone patterned black wool for the heart.

Fabrics were bought Locally at "Sew to Speak"
Black wool Herringbone, Red Velveteen, and This polyester white, yellow and grey tartan tafetta.

Next was the Draping and patterning followed by Cutting

For this I did a short cropped jacket with a flounce attached, it has two hidden pockets with flaps, rounded almost shawl like collar with the heart closure and one-piece long sleeves.  Also it has same fabric facing to attach the china silk lining to the interior.  I use a combination of Multiple Weights, "Mark-b-gone" markers and Clover quilter's chalk when laying out my patterns.  Another funny thing that I do is that I make my patterns with NO seam allowance.  I add the seam Allowance when I am tracing the patterns onto the fabric.  This gives me leeway for grading or resolving problems I might have forgotten earlier or just spotted.  Usually I can catch everything when I do the first muslin mockup but we all make mistakes, especially when you are sick and it is freezing cold in the basement where your studio happens to be.

Currently I am still sewing the pieces together.  I of course serged all the main body edges and I will only serge some of the lining because I don't want to bulk it up.  I also avoided serging the upper collar to keep it from bulking up as well.  Alright that is all for now, back to sewing and starting the skirt.  Keep tuned for Part 2

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Short Comings

If you didn't know it I am extremely short.  It makes clothes look totally different on me then it does on other people.  What would be a mini skirt on some is knee length of me.  To this effect the trend of jean ripped in the knees is on my shins.   No, seriously I am nearly legal midget height I am only 4'10" I wear a size 5-5.5 shoe and sometimes I shop the children's sections of clothing.

Back to the story these ripped jeans.  I fell in love with having a pair of trendy black skinny jeans when I went back to help out some shifts at Express about two weeks ago.

First off I would never of bought these without my discount because to start I have to cut off nearly 4 inches to first fit my height.   Then for the problem of the "knee" that they think is just going to be universal.  Maybe in NYC or LA you would have better luck but a company based in the Midwest Corporately should know better.  Majority of the clients do not run under if your a bigger size you will be taller!  Or that everyone is a 5'8" bombshell of long lean legs.

Here are the Jeans in Question after I shortened them

Here are the tools you would need to continue doing the shredding yourself in the more controlled and safe manner.   A Sharp Razor or Exacto Knife and small square of Cardboard.

After Marking where I want to rip it I stuck the cardboard underneath inside the pants.  Personally I did want to shred the jeans on both the front and back so this was a good control.  Also having the Cardboard in there gave me a good surface to cut against.  If my blade went past the cardboard it didn't sink into the fabric and cut any further.

The before and after shredding.  When you shred this you need to pay attention and making slicing strokes to follow the already apparent pattern.  In this case the weave was missing horizontally leaving just the vertical strings so I needed to slice vertical as well to preserve as much of the vertical strands as possible.  Do not willy nilly slice it or move diagonally because that will cut those vertical threads that you want to preserve.  if you want to be really precise about it use a ruler against your blade to keep it all perfectly straight.  I know it looks a little ragged in the After photo but do NOT feel you need to get each individual strand out.  Every time you wash these jeans more and more of the middle fuzz will come out leaving you with just the rip you want.  After the first wash of these jeans I used a lint roller to go across the new rips to gently pick out the extra fuzz still clinging.

My End Results after one wash

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Project Runway Episode 1

I just have to post these few words before the show tomorrow!

Well..... What an interesting season it looks like we will be having.  I see a good variety of potentials and some nervous drama wrecks already showing their true colors.  I keep feeling like I might know Ping Wu from Chicago like she was an upper class man while I was at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) but maybe it's just the name.......... I swear there was a Ping in fashion at our school even if it wasn't the same girl.   I've got weird connections to Project Runway anyways.

One of the Executive Producers for the Bravo Channel who was responsible for bringing Project Runway, Queer Eye for the Straight Guy and some other wonderful shows to re-vamp was a client of mine on Etsy (I know her name I just don't feel it is prudent to share it privacy and all).  I Graduated and Interned with Ra'mon Lawrence Coleman of last Season's Project Runway.   We were in the same Fashion classes for 3 years and Interned at Gary Graham NYC in Tribeca one summer.  He is a Total sweetheart and I have some really great memories from him.  There was Kelli Martin who is a Local Columbus person who I met after her PR, we did Highball together and she hired me to do Knitwear for a collection of hers, also sweet and we still chat here and there.  Terri Stevens also in C-bus now I have done Highball with her twice and I'll leave it there.  I have stories but they are basically her abusing her "fame" on the "not famous" to some of my closer friends.  Also Met Althea this past Highball and she rubbed me the wrong way, hopefully it was just her 5 mins of Fame on the not famous again.  My friend Sheila was in school with Suede.  Steven Rosengard from Season 4 worked at this Historical clothing museum while I was at SAIC and I remember him showing us garments for different projects.   So Far that sums up everyone I have some sort of direct or indirect contact to Project Runway.  Very Strange to look back on all this.  Hopefully I can be there someday......... I hawk the site weekly waiting for the new posting for castings.

Ra' might kill me for this but here is a backstage photo of him and one of our favorite teachers Liat from our Junior year at SAIC.

BACK to the Subject on the CURRENT Project Runway.
I hope there is less crying in the season then there was in the first episode.  Crying on Reality TV makes me nutty.  I mean if you can't get emotional control you have no business in my opinion to be on national TV.  It makes you look like a weak fool.  I'm not saying all crying is like that but over choosing a model?  Over the stress in just the first episode?   Don't these people know what they are getting themselves into?  It isn't like this is a new thing it's season 7 for crying out loud!  Project Runway has been around for years so people should know what to expect as soon as they get on.

I completely agreed with the Winning and Losing choices of Design.  I think that girl who was booted was a bit too cocky.  Having confidence in your work and design is one thing but you have to be humble to the Judges decision.  You must always think of the Judges as your client and the client is always right if you want to succeed.

As for the winner BRAVO!  Taking such a risk with so much handiwork and such a light fabric.  Also going with a simple silhouette was daring but fresh and young which they are always looking towards.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

OTD Catchup's - Grey Tones

Before I can post the new pics I need to post the Old ones and play a little catch up.  This is probably one of my more favorite looks to do.  A mix of the Feminine with Military/Menswear.  As you can see I am still trying to be creative in taking photos through a mirror.......

Grey Express Buttonup shirt
Grey men's Express AK-47 Tie
Grey Jeweled Cardigan Express
Black Jersey origami skirt from A/X
Baby G-shock pink square Watch
Express Chandelier Earrings (now on box sale for $7.99)
Zigi Soho 3 zipper Flat boots

Monday, January 18, 2010

I have a dream....... I have Goals...... I will make this Happen.

Even though nearly a month has passed I thought it quite important to share that I do have all of the above and it will be happening.

Obviously there is my Kilala Meows DIY Classes that will hopefully turn business.  I also have a short list of other things that I intend for the year of 2010.

1. More Blog followers and better Blog over all.  I responsibly invested in Gala Darlings Love and Sequins #7 about blogging and I am so glad that I did.  Not only entertaining but super informative.  It's also kind of like listening to an old friend or so I feel since I have been following her for several years now.

2. Being active in Weardobe and having better OTD's (which includes finally getting that digital SLR that I was woefully cheated out of due to fiscal circumstances)

3. Seriously making more of my own clothes and wearing it out.  Trying to get back to my original project to no longer buy into lesser brands and only invest in designer pieces that I feel are worth it.

4. Reading more business books, and studying for PRAXIS certification for K-12.  This goal is just reading though not necessarily taking the PRAXIS.  I looked at the study books at Barnes and Noble the other day and nearly had a anxiety attack.  I want to teach as much as I want to make fashion but there is so much more in there then Child Psychology like MATH!  I hate math, math hates me and that is our understanding.

5. Living out my inner Alice.  Meaning having fun, dressing up and being more polite to everyone I meet and hopefully it will spread.

To Kick this all off I have chopped off my hair and dyed it yet again!  I also needed to do this anyways for my OHAYOCON Costume.  I cut off on my own one morning about 3-4" all around.  Cutting your own hair is always an adventure.  Especially when you don't have a double mirror and can't see the back.

Bad Blogger!

*EDIT* If you read the Blog before this then you will see I truly am a bad blogger repeating myself in my excitement. D'oh!   if not then read this and forget the one before hand.  Sorry my thoughts are everywhere *END EDIT*

I'm trying really hard not to fall into that but I have been working furiously since Thursday on my DIY class schedule that I am launching in the next week!

I am super excited and this is really going to be interesting!  I'm trying to teach DIY classes for sewing, knitting, crochet that no one else in the area is doing.  It's very delicate to not step on the toes of other local store owners who also teach classes.  I am gearing mine more towards adults and making all classes BYOB to help enforce the age range I am hitting.  So far a lot of my boutique owner friends have been super supportive and think it will fill a good niche for the Short North.  I  have so many fun ideas and then of course I want to have basic classes every month.  I'm sure some projects people will want to do over but I'll wait and see what the wait lists if any are like on those.

Some of the things I'll be teaching are:
Making your own leggings
How to use a serger
Stitch N' Bitch Mimosa Sundays
Mohawk Hunter Hat
Beginning Knitting
Writing your own Knitting pattern
Beginning sewing
Stained glass ( I know it's not sewing but it's still a Craft that I can share that I know pretty well)
Sewing Panties and Boxers 101
and lot's more..................

Sorry this was a bit wordy but I promise in this next week you will have a Project Runway review or two, OTD's, Truth and another tutorial on DIY!

Friday, January 15, 2010

What's your color?

I know that everyone has a color they are drawn to, even if it's not your favorite.  Mine happens to be Green.  I feel it is a power color for me because when I see green I feel refreshed and energized.  Things that are green just make me want to touch and feel them.

Some of my green daily items are my Purse from UO by Poverty Flats
Generic Green Digital Camera Case
Knuckle Biter Green monster Camera Case by Abby Did
Lime Green Dell 13" Laptop

And on a Completely Different Story I just wanted to share a little bit of something personal.
If you were aware of this or not I have been extremely unhappy with that seamstress position I had.  Suffice to say they were just insulting to me.  I also found that I could not get all those things done I had originally wanted to with this blog about making my own clothes.  It seemed fantastic at the time but I can see now that it was only hindering me.  I was so unhappy with it that it actually made me shop more and I had less time to myself and sewing machine.

To remedy all this I officially quit Wednesday and picked up my check today.  I have never felt more Liberated in my LIFE!  Since then I have been happily working on my pet project and spending a lot of needed time talking to friends and fellow crafter's and boutique owners.  They are all so wonderful and encouraging!  I know it isn't going to happen over night but I still can't wait to make it public!

In essence I am going to do the two things I love!  Sewing and Teaching.  I am creating a program of DIY fun classes for the more fashion forward and adventurous. It is going to be a combination of unravelling the mysteries that some people feel are pattern making, sewing and knitting/crochet.  All my classes will be BYOB and themed Cocktail Demos.  Like doing a Serger Demo and serving PainKillers (the fruity coconut drink with rum).  Also having simple things like a leggings class and curiously funny like panty sewing.

My Ending words before the weekend are Remember to do what makes you Happy.
If you are upset and bitter it will carry onto the other parts of your life and it is simply 
I know not everyone can just up and leave their job but take the small steps to make you smile like keeping fortune cookies in your desk to crack open when you need a life lift or put fuzzy stickers on daily items to give you a soft reminder.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

On the Shelf - The Art of Manipulating Fabric

If you are seriously interested in making some fascinating textures then you NEED this book. It is one of the most fantastic books I have had in a long time by far.  It explains everything so clearly and has loads of step by step images and diagrams.  I am hoping to get approval for teaching my Draping class and incorporate this book into it.  Eventually I want to get the approval to teach an entire college course on this.

Making yo-yo's is just one of the fun little things from the capture in gathering.  Even though I have made these a million times before it is just so fascinating to read more about them. 

In doing all this reading it makes me feel more and more that I need to pursue Graduate School this year.  As always the big debate is either for Art Education K-12 at OSU or following my passion with a Master's in Fine Art and exploring fashion and body modification by Fabrics at CCAD.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Well Recieved

One of the best unexpected Christmas presents from a friend this year was this amazing T-shirt.  She got it in Chicago during a craft show.

I looked up the seller and they have a Etsy site.  My friend also gave me that lovely pin that came with it which I feels really epitomizes me!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

OTD Cherry Red and Warm

Not the most flattering photo of me but I am trying to work with what I have for now.  Also trying to find a spot at work is really hard since I can't get into the dressing rooms right now.  It is very surprising how many girls have already started to look for their prom dresses!

I am wearing Gold Medallion Earrings from Express 2007
24k Gold Heart pendant from my mother
Cherry tomatoe Red Sweater from UO Sale
Donna Karan black Cami
Black and Gold Leopard Belt from Deena & Ozzy UO Sale
Sweet Stella Lemon cake Ring
Black Lace Panel Skirt By Corpus UO Sale
Black ribbed leggings from American Apparel
Black boots from Walmart 2009

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Criss Cross makes me JUMP JUMP

I had seen these tights posted by Style Bubble and instantly fell in love with them.  Who can seriously afford tights that will snag and ruin eventually that are over a hundred dollars?  Certainly not me. Contemplating this I figured how one could potentially make them on your own if you were so inclined with a masochistic fetish for sewing and pattern work.
The shoes on the other hand I would buy in a heartbeat if I had the income!

The easiest way to do this is getting a skinny jean or legging pattern and then dividing it into your separate sections.  Don't forget to either notch, number or code them in some way so you know how it all pieces back together.  This is all of course with no seam allowance at all (since you are using 4-way stretch materials).
**I would avoid using a wide fishnet in this but if you are DEAD SET on making it the most difficult stretch project ever my advice is use water soluble glue to glue the edges to water soluble facing so that you have something to sew on and then it will dissolve when you wash it or make some 1/4" or less binding for those edges out of a solid 4 way stretch to match your thread.**

  I would avoid using actual tights but getting 1/4 yard pieces ordered from House of Spandex or Spandex World.  As new tights have been manufactured in the round and are not suitable for being cut up and old tights are already stretched so the fabric would not be even.

The Final step is sewing it all together on your serger not sewing machine.  For this project the only thing to bind all these stretch fabrics together is using a 3-thread rolled edge with Woolly Nylon in all the loopers and I would even go so far as the needle.  There is not good way to thread it except with tweezers, needle threader tool and lot's of patience.  There are other stretchable threads advertised but in my experience Woolly Nylon has been the best.  It just has more stretch in it then any of the others I have tried.  not only are they separated nylon strands but they are also loosely braided together to also give a much better finished edge.

Monday, January 04, 2010

Holiday Blitz!

Wow this holiday has really kicked my ass!  I barely got anything done fashion related except some excellent shopping at Sales from Urban Outfitters and Forever 21.

I'm excited for this New Year because it has a lot of good things going for it already.  I've put myself back out into working on photo shoots with people I trust who are on the same level as me for quality in their own art forms.  Here are two photos.  Hair and Makeup by Epixa, Photos by Chip Willis, model is Taylor from Wings Modeling agency and of course clothing by me.

In this New year I promise better posts, more truths from my twisted little nerdy mind and better OTD's