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May 18, 2017

Draping a Knit Dress with a Twist

For my final project in Draping IV at FIT, due this coming Saturday, I have to design both a dress and a jacket.

Our professor didn't put any further restrictions on us, which made the assignment harder: we could make almost anything in any fabric.  Since we'd worked with knits quite a bit this semester, I decided to make a knit dress, not something I have much experience with as most of the knit projects I've undertaken have yielded meh results.  I wanted to try a dress with a twist, inspired by the image above, from Helen Joseph-Armstrong's popular book, Draping For Apparel Design.

I had found a colorful knit jersey print recently in the remainder bin at Fabrics For Less recently, just 99 cents a yard.  There was more than enough of it to make a dress.

First I tried the twist in muslin.  I liked the result!

Then I tried it with my knit.  I suppose a solid would have showcased the twist a bit more, but I love the colors in this fabric -- something of a 1940's palette, imo.

I draped a flared skirt to go with the top and connected them with a waistband, which is lined in gray cotton jersey for extra strength.

Back neck and armholes are piped.

I really like the dress, even though it's simple and -- let's face it -- something I copied out of a textbook.  Sometimes you feel inspired and sometimes you don't.

For my jacket, I wanted to drape from scratch and, for the first time, used the Size 6 half-scale dress form I picked up second-hand last year.  I draped with a gray cotton jersey remnant.  The jacket is similar to a shrug. 

My final jacket will be a bit different, but I had great fun draping on the half-scale form and I used very little fabric in the process. 

And that's it!  I'll show you the finished garments together after Saturday's final class.

Anybody drape using a half-scale form?

Have a great day, everybody!

May 11, 2017

Self-drafted Pants for My FIT Menswear Patternmaking Class

Not much of a sketch, I know, and it's on the back of an envelope (above), but this is the design I came up with as one of my final projects for the menswear patternmaking class I've been taking at FIT (Fashion Institute of Technology).  It's due next week.

May 8, 2017

Listen to My Podcast Interview!

Friends, I'm thrilled to share with you a podcast interview that Sandi Hazlewood, who runs the excellent Crafty Planner blog, recently did with me.

Among other things you'll learn how I taught myself to sew, the origin of MPB Day, and when I was born -- not 1984 as is commonly believed.

You can tune into it here.  And do check out Sandi's other podcasts here.

Enjoy and have a great day, everybody!

May 3, 2017


Readers, it's really happening and it's gonna be yuge!

Apr 23, 2017

Draping and Patternmaking Class Updates

I think you know that this semester I've been taking two classes at Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT):  Draping IV (I skipped III but will probably take it the next time it's offered) and menswear patternmaking.

Apr 12, 2017

Brick-and-Mortar Shopping -- YEA or NAY?

Readers, when's the last time you shopped in a department store?

Apr 9, 2017

Lappin or Lanvin? Modeling the Embroidered Cotton Voile Shirt!

Readers, I've just completed my embroidered cotton voile shirt, which I made from an early Sixties Butterick pattern.

Check out the entire photo shoot here!

Apr 7, 2017

"Here, Kitty, Kitty" -- Peter's One-Year Anniversary Janome REVIEW!

Friends, I've been eagerly anticipating writing this review -- and could have written it much earlier -- but I wanted to wait a full year.

Mar 28, 2017

Simply the Vest

Readers, there is a certain kind of man who looks really good in a vest.

Mar 24, 2017

My Self-Draped Knit Dress: a Work in Progress

A day of draping and non-stop sewing -- my favorite kind of day!

Mar 21, 2017

Learning How to Drape in Knit

In my Saturday morning draping class (Draping IV), we're currently working in knit and I'm finding it very challenging.

Mar 16, 2017

My Jockey Journey or "The Crapification of Men's Undershirts"

Readers, today I need to get something off my chest and I don't mean my undershirt.

Mar 6, 2017

My Self-Drafted Men's Shirt + Kenzo Klunker?

Here's the shirt I designed last week for my menswear patternmaking class at Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT).

Mar 2, 2017

GLAMOUR ALERT -- Lenore Models My Yellow Crepe Ensemble!

Readers, a special treat!

My beautiful friend Lenore (who, among her many talents, is a handbag designer), has modeled my wool crepe ensemble, my final project for a draping class I took at Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) last fall.

You can view the results on the Mood Sewing Network here.  

Feb 25, 2017

NAME THAT PATTERN -- Comeback Edition!

Readers, it was time.

The sewing blogosphere hasn't been the same since I retired NAME THAT PATTERN, the Internet's favorite sewing pattern game.  So I'm delighted to report that we're back, and with straighter teeth, fuller lips, and a noticeably firmer jawline,
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