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Well, I spent a much smaller amount of time than I expected putting in the last of the grommets in my 1840 corset. Then I tried it on. There are some stress wrinkles. Most of them would probably go away with more boning, but these corsets tended to be minimally boned, so I'm saying that the wrinkles are period correct. ;) (And I'm too lazy to cord it.)

Then I tried it on with my tucked petticoat. I am actually liking them so much that I feel way more motivated to work on 1840 stuff. I need at least two more petticoats. Unfortunately, it's not really on the schedule for the near future. Also, I still need to shorten my tucked petticoat because it is about 2-3 inches too long. Shortening it is on my near future sewing schedule. Ironing it is also on the schedule. lol

More pictures )
I'm glad that I've finished this UFO. There are so many other projects I want to get to work on. Now that classes are over, I should have more time to work on sewing... When I'm not studying for exams, of course. And I'm going to my faculty's grad because even though I'm not graduating, several of my friends are. And the theme is Old Hollywood, so obviously I need a new dress for that. That's next on the list, I think.
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Here it is, the stuff I sewed in 2011. I didn't do any knitting like I wanted to, but I was far more productive than usual. I got done, on average, just over one project a month, which was my original goal for the year. I think I can up my productivity for next year a little bit. I have some new strategies, like to just force myself to get started, because once I've started I have no trouble continuing. So...

Grape dress- which I want to re-fit in the waist section before I wear it

The rest )

Whew! That was a lot. It seems like this was a pretty productive year for everyone on my Friends list. See you all in 2012! Happy New Year! And best of luck with all your future sewing projects!


Mar. 8th, 2011 02:11 pm
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I seem to have forgotten to mention, my 1840 corset is done! As of Sunday. I have some pictures of it on before it's bound and I'll post those. All it needs is those extra grommets (more pics after that, whenever that is). But I've found a trick for making grommets easier to insert, so that shouldn't take too long. When I make the hole for the grommet half to go into, I use a knitting needle to stretch it out. Well, while the knitting needle is still through the fabric, I slip the male half of the grommet over the knitting needle and push the needle out at the same time and putting the grommet piece in. This makes is so much easier than trying to force that piece of the grommet through the hole. I find that the threads and stuff always catch on it, or the hole starts to close back up.

Edited to add pictures )
mala_14: (Default)
So, here's the grape dress.

1947 Grape-y Dress! )

And this is the 1840 corset in-progress. What's left is boning channels and binding, which I want to get done this weekend. The dress dummy doesn't squish, so it looks a little odd. I sort of tried it on and noticed that there's a rather substantial gap in the back. I'm hoping the boning might squish me a little more to make a better fit. Also, the bust was a bit too big. Hoping the boning will help with that too. If not, I can always put a drawstring in the very top. And you can see that there's not nearly enough grommets in yet. Putting in more should also help with the fit.
1840 Corset in-progress )


Mar. 2nd, 2011 03:13 pm
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The grape dress is officially complete. The first thing to check off my list for the year. :) I took some pictures of my first fitting a few days ago. I'll post those when I'm feeling less lazy. 1840 corset is coming along. I got most of the grommets in. I'm out of grommets now. I wanted to wait on ordering more until I know what spiral boning I want to get for my 1880 corset to save on shipping costs. Up next is sewing the side seams, the boning channels, then binding. I also got my Wearing History pattern in the mail yesterday. I'm pretty excited about that. It's the 1930s Sports Togs. I don't have any fabric yet for this one, so I thought I'd hold off on it for a bit. When the weather gets warmer (if that ever happens, it's freezing today), I can get some fabric and make some appropriate clothing. I'm thinking Katherine Hepburn style beige trousers and crisp, white blouse. I'm waiting for my Past Patters order of a hip-length 1930s jacket and a 1930s dress, both of which I have fabric for (plum, Melton wool and a light poly floral in white, lavender, and purple).
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It's Reading Week (aka Spring Break, but for some reason not in spring), so no school! :) I've been working away at sewing and homework... Well more sewing, less homework. I've sewn the lining in around all the gussets on my 1840 corset. I also have my 1947 cut out as of today. My plans are to get the corset and dress both done before I have to go back to school. Except that I don't have enough grommets to finish the corset, but I want to get every other part of it done. So for the corset it's side seams, boning channels, binding, and grommets. And for the dress it's all the sewing.


Feb. 1st, 2011 10:36 pm
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The busk is in! Yay! It took a bit of fiddling, since I managed to sew a fold in the lining into the busk seam, but all is fixed and it looks fine. (It's not 100% perfect, the sewing lines are a tiny bit wobbly in places, but it's definitely passable.) The back pieces are also sewn to their linings. I want to sew the CB boning channels next. Then it's time to cut the slits in the lining for the gussets and whipping them to the main pieces. (My method is a bit of a mish-mash, but it should be alright... I hope.)
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This past week I put the gussets into the fronts and backs of my 1840 corset. Two bust gussets, one front hip, and one back hip per side, equals eight gussets in all. I took some pictures, but I had to use my dad's camera since mine has finally died and the program hasn't been downloaded onto the computer yet, and I'm feeling too lazy to do it. I have to say, gussets are a real pain, especially since I flat-lined my main pieces. This led to trouble making sure that both layers caught as I sewed in the gussets from the top. (Method used: So, most of the gussets I ended up sewing twice, at least in parts. I'm glad that's all done. Up next is the busk.

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This was my list from last year. It's funny; I did do sewing, but I didn't really work on any of these.
For 2010:
Finish plum 1790 stays
1860 corset
Some kind of shift or chemise
Gold striped petticoat
Red brocade jacket
Red cotton dress
Finish chocolate knitted mitts

What I actually got done this year:
1860 corset (actually morphed into a green fairy costume for Halloween...) and green fairy skirt (no pics of that)
And more! (Well, a little bit more...) )


Nov. 13th, 2010 06:49 pm
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Ok, I have a lot of pictures so I'm going to do this in separate posts. First up are some cupcakes I made way earlier this year. They're vanilla and chocolate with strawberry buttercream. They were tasty.
Yum! )

1840 corset so far )

Fabric )

No sewing

Nov. 9th, 2010 09:30 pm
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 It's all homework, all the time for me right now. I have about four (well it's more like 3 and a conclusion as of today) essays to get written in the next two weeks. I decided to get all my assignments done early so I wouldn't have to do them later. Plus, it made me feel better about the end of term tests I'll be missing and have to make up later. Surgery (donating a kidney to my brother, since I don't think I've mentioned this recently, or maybe even at all) is in two weeks and two days. So, needless to say, I'm a bit stressed. But I've gotten all the essays and tests back that I've had to do so far for school and my grades are looking alright, so that's good. It's just a bit worrisome because I'm in an honours program right now and need to maintain a certain grade point average to stay in the program and have good attendance. Also, it's the first time in a long time that I'm really enjoying school and it sucks to have to miss it. But enough complaining. I'm just a bit cranky because I woke up and my necklace that always wear somehow broke in my sleep, so I need to get the chain fixed. It makes me feel unlucky, which is silly and superstitious, but it has some good luck charms on it that I like to wear. Ok, back to being positive. This essay is almost done. And I have a decent idea of what I'm doing for the next one. And I got an A- on the paper that I got back today and it was in my favourite class. :)

Also, I plan on getting lots of sewing done on my holidays. I'll finally get that 1840 corset together and probably order the spiral boning for the 1880 corset and maybe get that one together too.
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Fabric shopping was fairly successful. Although I had to settle for a slightly different shade of green, I basically got what I wanted. This includes: a shiny pale acid/apple green fabric with a metallic thread woven through it (for the corset and skirt lining), matching organza with gold stars all over it (for the skirt), green ribbon which is several shades darker but still looks alright to lace the corset with, and thread. Also got some things for the 1840 corset: twill tape for binding and thread for decorative stitching in a soft, golden yellow colour.

I think today is a good day to cut out all the corset pieces. :)


Oct. 3rd, 2010 07:40 pm
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Well, my Farthingales order came in last week and although my 1880 corset mock-up is still not all that it could be in the bust region and is even a little questionable on the left back (asymmetry is not fun), the1840 corset mock-up is great (I wish my camera was working because then I would have picture proof. It'd also be really useful to get help for the 1880), so I cleaned up the cutting out area and have all my fabrics downstairs on the table. I decided on using coutil for the strength layer, sateen for the outer layer, and twill for the inside. I was going to use a slightly different combination, but the coutil won out because it's stiffer, and seemed like a better idea for a corset with hardly any boning. I'm also not planning on cording it. Too lazy. ;p

Now, a question: With all of my corsets, the lacing gap is significantly smaller at the top than at the bottom. I have tried to fix this by taking width out of the top, but that hasn't seemed to be working very well. It sort of just squishes my chest more, which isn't really the goal, especially since I'm not particularly well endowed up there. It's like the lacing has a life of its own and when I tighten it just tends to shift around until it looks like this: / \ Any suggestions?
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I adjusted all the gussets and the 1840 corset now fits fine. It's going to need some boning in the side bust, which was a little unexpected. But, it seems like I'm not the only person to have a need for boning there. This extant garment has boning in the exact same place. I thought that was neat. Hurray for documentation! :) Up next: Making the 1880 corset mock-up fit. Then I can order all the supplies for both at once. (Working a few more shifts would also probably help, so I can pay for all the supplies. :p) I have the fabric, cotton sateen and twill. I want yellow stitching for the 1840. I'm thinking of flossing the 1880 in red. But still not sure. Maybe making it a coloured corset... Too many options.
mala_14: (Default)
Well, in this time after school but before I start working, I've been trying to be productive. I've been doing a decent amount of sewing, working on mock-ups. Unfortunately no pictures because my camera is broken. :(

1860 corset mock-up: Changing the tag now to 1880 corset because that's really what I'm shooting for. I made it slightly curvier (all the straight seams are now slightly curved) and significantly longer than the original. I've got mock-up two cut out and the pieces sewn together. No bones in it yet and not yet tried on because the lacing strips are currently on my other mock-up.

1840 corset mock-up: This is version um, not entirely sure. The back pieces are still the same, but the front is different. I just tried it on and I need to slightly change the shape of the bust gussets. Bust gussets are a huge hassle. And the back hip gusset needs to be taken in. Also, somehow I could lace this one much more closed and I'm thinking it needs to be taken in centre front so that the bust gussets aren't sitting under my arms. ;p It has a really nicely nipped in waist though. It makes my waist look way smaller even though it's almost the same measurement.

Red cotton dress: This is cut out. Haven't worked on it since because I'm too lazy to change the thread in the machine. It's yellow on the top and black in the bobbin at the moment. Plus, once I get started on it I'll need a zipper pretty soon, which I don't have yet.

I think that's about it for now.


Apr. 25th, 2010 06:00 pm
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Well, let's see. This past week I:
  • Started a new cotton summer dress (red fabric with pink flower sprigs)
  • Put gussets into 1840 corset mock-up front piece
  • Studied too much
  • Finished exams and final projects on Friday evening which means I am pretty much graduated :)
  • Celebrated WAY too much Friday night (see above)
  • Baked for four hours (cupcakes and lemon meringue tarts) while incredibly tired and slightly hungover from previous night and morning (didn't get home until 9:30am)
  • Went to a comedy club last night as part of a fundraiser for a friend who is going to Africa to help build a school for girls
  • Successfully had a wedding shower for my friend today and ate lots and lots of sandwiches and other finger foods :)
It's been busy these past few days. I am exhausted and plan on doing nothing for a week before I start work. Just gonna do some sewing and resting. And watch part two of Small Island on Masterpiece tonight. Should be a good time.

School ick

Apr. 13th, 2010 01:51 pm
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I think I've come up with a cording pattern and figured out the boning thing. I'm thinking flat steels centre back and spiral on the side seam, busk in front (I was iffy about that one for awhile since you don't really see corsets from that time with cording and a busk, but decided that I really wanna try it out), and then cording on the front (with some diagonal lines in the stomach area) and around each gusset and doing the diagonal lines on the back by the shoulder blades. I may put another steel on a slant from the outside of the bust to the bottom of the front or do that with several rows of cording instead. I don't really need tons of support and I think the cording would be enough. Did I mention before that I took apart the whole front of my mock-up because I decided I wanted to make a couple more minor changes in terms of fit? Becasue I did. I made the line for the front hip gusset deeper. I was getting a bit of a wrinkle at the waist because I think it was too long waisted for me. I also wanted to fiddle around with the bust gussets more, making them a bit closer together at a slightly different angle and a little deeper. I've got all the adjustments made to a new front and it's cut out, but I haven't really had time to sew it together yet. Why?

School. Blah. It's the end of term and I have two final exams and three papers/projects. And after that a wedding shower to help put together. So I am pretty busy with those things. I'm often sitting in front of this computer (not unlike now) trying to write about labour relations in Canada or working on a case about TiVo while thinking about my corsets: both the 1840 one and the 1860 one (which I haven't gotten around to cutting out a new mock-up for yet, obviously). School work at the moment is really less than thrilling. Ick! !ck, I say!
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In making my 1840 corset, I've come to a bit of a crossroads. I can't decide if I want cording or if I should just throw in some more boning. Cording would look pretty, but it seems like a lot of work. But boning might be a questionable idea in terms of placement since there are gussets everywhere. 1840 is a transition time from one stiffener to the other, so either choice would be correct. Any thoughts or opinions?

And no, obviously I'm not writing this when I should be working on my English essay... ;p

Mocking Up

Mar. 28th, 2010 05:34 pm
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I have been working on my 1840 corset this weekend. The pattern is the one in the Jill Salen book. I enlarged the pattern and made a few adjustments on paper, to get it to be around my measurements. (Well not actually. Because I made that other corset mock-up before, I have a bit of an idea of my corset measurements, which is what I changed the pattern to. It takes into account my squish and lacing gap and such.) It's two big pieces with two bust gores and hip gores front and back. Using [ profile] koshka_the_cat 's instructions for putting in gores made that part really easy. Then it was time to sew the side seams which was a bit difficult because the front piece has a really oddly shaped side that curves out around the ribs to the top. So that was interesting. I made channels with the huge seam allowances and stuck 1/2" cable ties in them for boning, threw on my lacing strips (which I also made this weekend) and tried it on.

How it went )


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