Let’s Start With A Couple of Garments

I’m realizing how impractical my dream wardrobe is.  My goal is to make everything in my wardrobe, but I keep gravitating to full skirts and dresses that need crinolines when what I need is more drawstring skirts and simple tops. Oh well. One day I’ll close the gap between the woman in my head who wears pearls, heels and lipstick daily and the woman that needs to run out to the farmers market and ride the subway.

Anyhow, now that I started sewing again, I’m obsessed. When I’m not working on a project, I’m thinking about one. For the past few months, I’ve been working on improving my sewing skills and adding couture touches to my work because I believe the details separate a homemade garment from a handmade garment. I’ll be posting here about my adventures (and misadventures) with sewing  – and occasionally other crafts that interest me.

I don’t yet have a dressform so I’m working with hangers. While they were very cooperative, they don’t do justice to the clothes so I may have to get a tripod and take my own pictures. Sigh.

Here’s what I’ve been working on:

First up, my strapless dress from McCalls 8766.

Hanger loop so I can hang up my dress. I also made a thread bar for the loop. Yes, that’s  hem tape.


Hanger loop again. Here you can see better how it’s attached at the waist seam.



Zipper on the lining side


My modifications:
1. I used the shorter circle skirt
2. I changed it to a sweetheart neckline
3. I did the full bust adjustment
4. I added much more boning. The pattern only calls for boning at the side seams, but I knew that wasn’t going to work so I added boning at the back, the sides, diagonally from the center front to the side seam and in the center front to give the bodice much more structure and support.

The only thing I haven’t done is a belt. I have a 1″ buckle that I’m going to use.

Next up, a skirt inspired by Mimi G’s Regal Maxi. Mine has four belt loops and two side pockets, an invisible zipper in the back and a separate lining. I bought the fabric for $3/yard at a fabric shop in downtown Brooklyn.



Right now, my table is overrun with fabric and notions.  I have about 6 projects to work on and I’m desperately trying to stay organized.

One thing I need to get better at is taking pictures while I’m sewing.  I never think to do it, but I do want to create some tutorials in the future, so I’ll try to take more pictures during the process.  Until next time.


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