Saturday, January 14, 2012

Weekend Update

A couple of notes as I head into a day of tracing, cutting and prepping (maybe even sewing?)...

Blue Ruby Slip Update: I wore it last week and I was amazed by how terrifically it stood up to a day at work. The silk completely kept static at bay - despite my wearing it with tights! The lace was much stronger than I imagined it would be. A part of me thought this thing was going to fall apart on first wearing but it went back on the hanger at the end of the day, barely even creased. This is the only bias cut thing I've ever worn, as far as I can remember. It's certainly the only silk, bias cut thing I've worn and it does feel strange to move in it. One feels the angle of the fabric - not off-puttingly, but it's unusual. At any rate, don't be scared of delicate looking lace. Chances are, if you pay enough money for it :-), it'll hold up to its function.

Croquis: I'm having some technical difficulties with digitally drawing outfits onto my croquis (aka I totally suck at it in a serious, disturbing way) and haven't yet cracked the code. I've had a really busy time at work which is mentally tiring in the off hours, so I don't know how and when you will be seeing the version of the palette that shows P.Cro. wearing the items I intend to make. I may have made some of those garments by the time I figure out the digital drawing!? I don't see that as a problem. These are separate skill sets and I'm not going to put unnecessary time constraints on myself. For now, the sewing gerbils have moved into the domain of sketching.

Tailoring: It seems, in my work role, I have a new need for jackets. I suspect that my next project, after completing the Spring Basics Wardrobe, will be to find and make some suit jackets. I don't want entire old-school suits. I'm looking at separates - even if they're constructed in the same fabrics i.e. pants and jacket or skirt and jacket - because I was there in the 90s and I'm not prepared to go back. I don't care if you're an investment banker - times have changed and one can be as creative with professional-wear as she chooses to be (IMO). Edgy creativity and elegance/formality need not be mutually exclusive. I can't wait to see how I pull this one off :-)

Update on the update: No sooner do I decide to delve into the suit jacket that I read about Craftsy's new Sew Retro course (taught by everybody's favourite sew-alonger Gertie). Here's the promo of the soon-to-be-released tutorial:

Sew Retro: The Starlet Suit Jacket:
Gretchen Hirsch is back with another Craftsy Sew Retro class! This time she’s going to show you how to make a suit jacket to knock ‘em dead!

Um, who loves starlets?! Who loves retro? Who needs suit jackets? (I have no idea, but something tells me this will be 40s-inspired. Wonder if I'm right...) Let's just say I've already signed up in my mind.


  1. I'm glad to hear the slip wasn't as delicate as you thought it might be and can't wait to see what designs you choose for suit jackets.

  2. The slip sounds like it was worth all the trouble. I love bias cut—if I'm having a day when I feel good about my body.

    I can't wait to see what you do with jackets. Those are complicated.

  3. Susan: Isn't that great news. I know that Sherry said it would be sturdy, but experience is the best teacher :-)

    E: I wasn't having a "skinny day" but it still made me feel like a movie star :-) I am wondering about jackets. Guess I should start doing some research.

  4. I will be watching your jacket journey with much interest because this is something that I'm still struggling with...finding wearable jackets that I like that work for my conservative work environment!

    1. C: I wondered if you would comment because I know you work in the last bastion of formal environments :-) I think you manage to walk that line well. I don't know what my approach is going to be. At all, yet.

  5. I'm glad to hear that slip held up and you enjoyed wearing it. I love bias silk for the way it makes you feel.

    I'm interested in your jacket journey too. I had a hard time giving up structured suits, I really did, but now couldn't imagine going back to them, not that it looks like I will be in the near future, but I am still interested to see what you come up with and why.

  6. Glad the slip is working! I want to make one... but so many other things to do...

    Re. croquis (another thing on my to-do list). Do you have a pen tablet? They're pretty much imperative for drawing on computer. Alternatively, using a vector program like Inkscape or Illustrator makes it easier to fix lines after you've drawn them. Alternatively, print it out and trace and draw by hand the old-fashioned way. This is probably as easy as anything else, unless you're really trying to save paper.

    ... sorry for the late post, I've been rubbish at keeping up with reading lately...

  7. I used to do nothing but flat sketches in my previous life as a fashion designer and cursed often trying to get the computer to do things my way! What I learned: don't bother with anything but a good drawing program if you want to do your sketches your way: Illustrator is my first and last choice.

    Also, while fun, asymmetric croquis are definitely cuter, they also make sketching garments a bit more work since you can't just draw half, copy & flip to make a garment sketch.

    A pen tablet helps, but a comfortable mouse can also work fine. Don't use just a scratchpad on a laptop, unless you like having cramped, achy hands.

    Finally, don't despair--it takes time to build up a base of "bodies" that you can grab from and modify quickly. One basic pant sketch can easily be turned into any variety of wide-leg/narrow leg/pant/culotte/shorts. The same goes for one basic top and one basic skirt.

    Sorry for the long comment--very much appreciated your fine advice with bras & wanted to share what I knew. Now I feel like I can try something besides Chantelle & Wacaoal!

  8. M: I really don't know how this one's going to play out! :-)

    T: You'll make one in due course. I have a tablet. I'm not loving using it though. And I've been using Inkscape. (I"ve also downloaded GIMP.) In truth, I like actually drawing with a pen on paper quite a bit more. I may need to just start photographing those sketches.

    Bushra: Thank you for your feedback. I am using Inkscape, which is the open source version of Illustrator. And I hear you about the challenges of "fun croquis". I'm so pleased that the bra post has been of use. I've actually written about bras and fitting many times over the past 4 years. Please feel free to check out the archives. There really are so many bra options to enjoy these days.