Saturday, December 23, 2006

Lauren's Designs

Miss Lauren is quite the fashion diva. She has her own logo now (lovingly designed by my sister Sue)and makes cute little wristlets and other accessories. She peddles these to her school friends and plans on donating a portion of her proceeds to charity. The directions for these were on a tear-pad at Joann...I have not figured out how to make a feed-link yet otherwise I'd do so.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

It's in my Genes...part 2

I can't give all the credit to had something to do with my artsy ways. Here is one of dad's beautiful seascapes. One of my favorite memories was beach combing with my dad at Half Moon Bay State Beach in Northern California.

It's in my Genes

This is one of my mom's designs from when she went to Fashion Design School in Hollywood. It's dated around 1952-1953, isn't it gorgeous? I love her color choices! I'm hoping to make this dress this summer. Stay tuned.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Christmas Jammies

Lauren and I made the Christmas Jammies together. I pulled my first machine(Viking 190)out of the basement for her to use, dusted off the cobwebs and away it went. I'm amazed how forgiving machines can be! This pattern was Butterick B4383 view C and we lengthened the sleeves.

The Dance Drama

In November our dance team went to Portland for the Western Region Oireachtas. We "threw" together this last minute dance drama and performed the Story of The Selkie. Our plan was to dance under black light but minutes before we went on stage we were told no black light after we previously were told yes. We were all disappointed because the costumes and make-up were all UV reactive.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

The Most Difficult Project...ever

This is my 3rd Irish Dance dress, the first two were rather simple and I have no digital photos to post. I've been working on this for months and frankly I'm rather sick of the darn thing. Sadly Lauren has outgrown it and I am sewing at a snails pace. I don't dare let anyone else wear this as there are many imperfections. However, I have learned a lot about the art of Irish Dance costumes...I know how to applique well now. I still have to master the box pleat and I don't care for the rubbery stretchy base fabric. I chose simple designs to practice the brother said it looks like a hockey jersey so I can't get that out of my mind now when I look at this dress.

The Beer Purse

The Beer Purse took First Place at a local Feis Dance/Art what does beer have to do with Irish dancing? everything! I placed higher in my sewing than my dancing that day.
This is sewn from Butterick BP439 view C. I thought it was going to be a bit bigger so I was a little disappointed in the dimensions. I used red quilted fabric from my stash, purchased a fat quarter of the wheat fabric and cut up a pair of Guinness Boxers (new ones I purchased on Ebay) and appliqued with red metallic thread. I did not care for the pattern so I don't plan on using this one again.

Ice Skating is Nice Skating

Ice Skating is Nice skating but Don't skate where the Ice is dad used to sing this song to me when I was little. I dug this skating costume out of my mom's cedar chest a year too late for Lauren, but I got her to try it on and model it for me. My sister Sue Marchand (a fabulous artist in Livermore California by the way) made this for me when I was 10 years old. Sue made a lot of my clothes for special occasions when I was little. I remember sitting next to Sue on Saturday afternoons catching scraps and threads for her. She was an inspiration for me and still is today.

"The Dress"

There is a long story behind this Christmas dress...but the dress was created for my special little girl. We looked at the Storybook website and Lauren wanted this one badly. It was days before Christmas and there was no way it would arrive on time. I drove to the fabric store and "whipped it up" with a fever that I did not know I had. I think I used a Daisy Kingdom pattern for the skirt and a skating costume for the top. The top is red stretch knit and the skirt an acetate or taffeta...and of course trimmed with marabou.

The Firefighter

I know...I know I did not make this costume but I had to post one of my favorite photos of Paul. He's such a handsome young man and dreams of being a Firefighter.

The School Girl

Well, I had guidelines here and made the costume according to the costume director. Lauren played a school girl in a local community theatre production of Pippi Longstocking.

The Cheerleader

Here's Lauren cheering for her big brother Paul. I used a basic cheerleader pattern...the pleats were not much fun. The fabric was black and orange knit and again from my stash. We really enjoyed watching her work the crowd and cheering for the Jaguars.

Legally Blonde

This one is my all time favorite. Lauren saw the movie Legally Blonde and fell in love with the main character Elle Woods. I had no pattern and had never sewn without one. I drafted this one by myself including the hat for Lauren and Bruiser the doggie. I found the hot pink fabric in my lucky can you get. The gloves were also in my sewing storage bin too...I save odd things and eventually they do come in handy even if it's only one item every ten years. The spray paint did not sit well on the shoes but's only a costume. The purse and dog I found on Ebay...he was about $24.00 the most expensive part of the costume but it completed the ensemble.

The Gypsy

The Gypsy was one of the easiest...I used a peasant top and lengthened it to a dress. I used typical seasonal fabric and added a couple of scarves. Steve made the crystal ball from a clear ornament and put a strand of battery powered lights inside. She worse fish net hose. ooh laa laa...walla!

The Leprechaun

The Leprechaun was Lauren's all time favorite: I made the exact costume for my niece. Lauren wore the costume again in the St. Patrick's Day Parade and danced the jig (she is an Irish Stepdancer) It's nice when a costume can be worn again after all that work. I used McCalls Uncle Sam costume pattern 870

The Pirate

Lauren helped design this costume. No store bought costumes for this girly. The black shirt is a Simplicity pattern: 4301 That's so Raven made from black gauze with sequins. The pants I used a basic pant pattern and added elastic and lace. The black and white fabric from Joann's was difficult to work with...I think it was an acetate that shreds easily. The corset is royal blue stretch velvet made from Simplicity 9836. Stretch velvet and Grommets don't work well even with an interfacing but I loved the fabric.