Wednesday, March 30, 2016

More Spring Things

English Spring
With  Spring  actually here,  it is inspiring to see many possibilities in wardrobe extensioning.
Cotton dresses are so much more comfortable than blends or manmade fabrics.  mingo & grace have a unique and yet classic dress pattern on sale now that would work with many colors and flowery prints for Spring and Summer.

 These pictures come from their website and the ladies look very pleased with their results.  I would lengthen the hemline for a more feminine and graceful look. 
McCalls has  another shirtwaist out in 7380 by Melissa Watson.  Again, this would look very nice with an even-length lowered hem.  It has an interesting placket for the front opening.  The skirt is  A-line shaped.
One could change the sleeve style with a shorter sleeve for summer.  The gathers in the back make it fit nicely.  Another challenge!

While perusing dress styles I have noticed that there are very few details on American dresses.  It seems that knit fabrics reign and so it leaves little with one to find those feminine details on dresses anymore. 

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Spring is in the Air And a Couple More Shirtwaist Offerings!

Walled Garden in Springtime Giclee Print
Walled Garden in the Springtime
Helen Allingham

There is an inspiring  freshness when we see the new growth after the winter's chill.  The colors seem more vibrant and there is an eagerness to enjoy the new season ahead.  God's works shout out in the springtime with a glorious array of color and beauty.

This is an wonderful time to gather new ideas and freshen the spring transitional wardrobe that has been sitting idle since the cold Fall and Winter weather.

I have perused a few of the new spring patterns from the major 4 sewing pattern catalogs.  I am always encouraged to see a version of the shirtwaist dress for the new year's entries.  I mentioned previously Simplicity's entry in 8014 in this post.  It is a simple dress with bodice options and varying skirt lengths.  Just be sure to keep your knees covered as it is so much more flattering to the figure.  It is a graceful and feminine look. 

Butterick 6333 has princess seam lines  that run from the shoulder down.  I like these for fitting as it is difficult to get a proper fit with a princess seam that emanates from the sleeve opening.

Butterick  6333

Lengthening the sleeves and skirt a bit makes it usable for transitional season clothing with consideration of fabric weight.

McCalls 7351 offers another classic approach to the shirtwaist with the various skirt types.  Personally, the squared corners remind me of table cloth re-purposing and they are more of a fad than classic looks.  The dipped-look skirts (?) as in the denim style dress below are also a fad. To make it more flattering as it is A-line, just make it the same length all around. The skirts can be lengthened or you may have a favorite skirt pattern that you could replace the given pattern with.  Make sure that your waist measurements match with the bodice on the pattern.

McCalls 7351

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

More Nearing Spring Thoughts: Musings on "Old" Clothing!

Good to remember when I make pillowcase dresses... I love the ribbon detail.  Thanks, @Julie Hudson for the tip!:

Have you ever thought about how many people change their wardrobes and how often that happens?  Then take into the fact that some people just toss clothing into the waste baskets rather than recycle.   My husband receives junk mail  (another wasteful enterprise--although I am sure some do make money that way or it wouldn't keep filling up our mail boxes) that was quite interesting!  It was titled "America Gets Thrifty!"  The article told about a retail thrift store industry and how great it is doing.  Some of you readers might be familiar with  Epic Thrift.  The article quoted a story from June 6, 2013, ELLE magazine saying that the average American throws away 70 pounds of clothing every year.  This equals about 191 T-shirts per person discarded per year.  That is just to give an idea of the wastefulness.

There are many other sites that show that how wasteful and thoughtless America has gotten to be.  There are groups and companies that specialize in recycling clothing and shoes as well as other household goods.   However, there seems to be a growing number of thrift store shoppers as well as folks recycling clothing and shoes.  I enjoy going through such stores and finding "treasures" as well as recycling what we are through using that is still in good condition.

Probably in the larger cities there are a lot of thrift shops that specialize in up-to-date-fashions where trendy looks can be purchased for a lot less.  But the fact is thrift shops work because of purposeful customers who want to use their  funds wisely and others just love to shop for "treasures".

On this note of recycling and repurposing, I received this interesting website  and wanted to share it with you as I believe it is an outstanding contribution that one can easily become involved in.  Here you can use up those fabric scraps with gratefulness that God has made a way to clean out those fabric stashes and others can be so blessed by your kindness!   Please check out this site:  Little Dresses for Africa!  I am definitely going to do this as they have several ideas for children's clothing.  I noticed that some of these have been at it for several years and a few have had to quit sending dresses for a variety of reasons,  shipping costs are expensive as well as dispensing concerns.  Anyway, one of the simple ideas is making pillowcase dresses.  I know that there has been a great venture promoted for making just pillowcases by sewing stores in the U.S., not sure of those details as it just didn't interest me, but this makes a pillowcase seem to take on new life!   I find there are many sites that donate sewn clothing to children around the world.  We adopted from Haiti in 2005 and I  always wanted to sew some dresses for the  little girls and as well as pants for the boys at the orphanage, but got busy with our own corner of the world and now that our children are much older I find golden opportunities!  This is one site that is interested in pillowcase dresses from what I can read.

Another site that wants dresses  is found here:
Dress A Girl Around The World

 Opportunities rarely exist whereby one can make a pretty outfit for a girl that is appreciated for its being a dress for daily wear!  Anyway, if the Lord leads you down this path for a while, may you enjoy the blessings!