We can’t resist writing more about the collaboration between Britex Fabrics, BurdaStyle and Amy; Amy’s meticulous work on her skirt’s waistband is what tipped us over the top! Her tailoring makes our heart beat quickly, and we sigh. Jenny is modest, and talks about her technique with scientific precision, “A structured waistband is not an essential part of the pattern, but I think it adds a lot of elegance to this high-waisted skirt. Marina von Koenig, BurdaStyle’s expert in all things couture, recently wrote about her experiences making a structured waistband for a high-waisted skirt. What I’ve done here is very similar. My waistband is essentially a sandwich of Rigilene, a plastic boning found in many sewing shops. The bottom layer of the sandwich, the facing, is made up of a layer of the fashion fabric, a layer of silk organza, and a layer of horsehair canvas – all quilted together. On top of this layer are silk organza channels into which the Rigilene strips are threaded. The top layer of the sandwich, which becomes the outside of the waistband, is made up of a layer of the fashion fabric and a layer of cotton flannel interfacing. The flannel helps give the waistband a smooth look from the exterior. The two halves are stitched together along the top and then the seams are graded and understitched so that everything looks lovely and stays put.”
Category Archive: Sewing Techniques
Have you ever used a commercial pattern and been frustrated by unwieldy armhole fit; a too loose fit can cause the entire bodice to fit badly. Marina of the couture sewing blog, Frabjous: Couture presents some tips on armhole depth. She says, “I wanted to focus on sleeve fitting, and the correct armhole shape and size is very important.” For additional instruction, Marina recommends this article from Threads magazine by Sarah. My personal armhole fitting tip has been to use a modified princess seam with the front bodice. This works wonders in closing armhole gape when fitting waistcoats; the bodice will be cut in two pieces…a front piece and a side panel. The fitting seam starts at the lower armhole and ends at the hem, approximately 6” from the side seam. This modified princess seam corrects unseemly gaping and ensures a smooth fit.
Sherry from the Australian blog Pattern Scissors Cloth describes a Dior dart, and includes a step-by-step tutorial on creating this flattering couture detail. A Dior dart is a short bust dart that extends from a bodice side front panel seam, often occurs in fitted tops and dresses from the sixties, and we hope is making a much needed comeback!
Christine from the blog DaughterFish and BurdaStyle bring you a tutorial on building shelf bras with cups (for support and shape) into tanks, t-shirts, and bodysuits. In addition to using this technique on yoga tops and bathing suits, it is especially handy for tops with low-cut backs. Of course, swimsuit lining and cups are available at Britex Fabrics!
Brilliant yellow daffodils are blooming and peppy red-breasted robins are chirping; long lazy summer days are on the way. What better time to learn how to properly tailor a winter coat, then when we have months before winter arrives. Gertie from Gertie’s New Blog for Better Sewing: A Modern Homage to Vogue’s New Book for Better Sewing (Published 1952) has a detailed guide to coat tailoring on her blog, the Lady Grey Sew-Along. From padding the under-collar, to back stays, working with hair canvas, bound buttonholes, and making a muslin…Gertie covers it all! We would love a new coat in this scrumptious saffron wool flannel!
We love sheer chiffon – its delicate drift as it swirls airily and the way lining changes its colors. Lorenna from Lorenna Buck Designs and CraftGossip made this tutorial for a swishy ankle-length chiffon skirt, and Threads magazine has some handy tips for sewing with chiffon, this most gossamer of fabrics! Larenna says that this is “a silk chiffon maxi skirt that is versatile for daily wear and packs down small”. Britex Fabrics’ silk sheer chiffon is on sale through Friday, May 4, 2012.
Just in time for a restorative getaway to a rock-strewn and balmy Mediterranean island, here is a tutorial from Matt at Design*Sponge for a hand-sewn passport cover. This could be made in either leather, or even faux leather….we love hand-sewing for its meditative nature, and with this case you’ll have plenty of time to daydream about fields of wildflowers, picnics of crusty bread, hard cheese, sticky thyme honey, salty olives, and wine, and lazy afternoon snoozes on a soft blanket.
Jeffery from the tailoring blog, Made by Hand: the great Sartorial Debate presents this classic video tutorial on making hand-sewn buttonholes called “Hand Made Buttonholes: Making suit sleeve buttonholes by hand one Sunday morning”, set to music played by Pablo Casals. All that is lacking is a mug of spiced hot chocolate and a sleeping cat.
Pam from off-the-cuff-style has helpfully posted a page from a vintage sewing book, “Dressmaking Made Easy”, 1941, McCall Corporation, on making two piece sleeve plackets. She says, “This is the way I was trained to sew a sleeve placket (also known as a “gauntlet”) by my mentor, an “old world” Tailor with exacting standards of excellence. I still use this method almost every time…a placket with 2 separate pieces, the overlap and underlap. By using 2 pieces, I find I have more control to fold and press most accurately. Additionally a 2-piece placket offers more design opportunities, such as using different fabrics for the over and underlap….even changing the top (peak) of the overlap…perhaps making it square, curved (rounded), and more.” We love these plackets for the debonair touch it adds to shirt sleeves, and are enormously enamored of making ours with a contrasting scrap of fabric; wee bits of flowered Liberty of London cotton lawn are perfect for this purpose!
Carla, from ScientificSeamstress and molecular biologist turned patternmaker, developed this rockin’ tutorial for making 1″ single-fold bias tape, and points out that it is but one fold away from being 0.5″ wide double-fold bias tape, which is incredibly useful for binding and finishing edges. Make some in a contrasting print to accent necklines, aprons, a child’s frock, baby bibs….let your imagination run wild!