It has been a while since my last post, there have been some computer issues that prevented me from posting plus the Holidays, mostly virtual, but I finally got to see my mom which was very nice indeed! This meant that I had to take a covid test every 7 days to be able to see her once a week, this is fine but takes up time that would otherwise be dedicated to my work... Not complaining just stating facts.
Anyway I am now back to work (at home) and couldn't be happier to be doing so. The first project I thought I would do is hats for my grandkids, I have some white fur that I thought the girls would like and for the boy I made a black hat out of Italian wool with pleather inserts that turned out quite nice.
I made the faux white fur one as well for the youngest granddaughter and well.... let's just say the vision and the outcome were decidedly different, not even on the same planet I would dare say LOL!!!
Anyway you can see the pix for yourself, in my head it was very glamorous and fun for the children to dress up and warm for them to actually wear outside! When I saw it I started to laugh so hard I cried, really tears streaming down my face, I couldn't stop for a while which brings me to my post today.
In these times of gloom and doom, long winter days, stuck indoors we could all use a good laugh I think, I could be wrong...
I issue you all a challenge to create an ugly hat using any hideous fabrics from your stash! The winner gets bragging rights, just so you know I set the ugly bar pretty high!
Lets have some fun, Who's in???
It was a cool class last Thursday! I mean that in the figurative as well as the literal sense of the word! The furnace broke down, when I arrived it was 8 degrees inside brrrr!! I called the person in charge of the hall and she promptly came to find the problem, well it could not be fixed that day so they improvised and brought in space heaters, they helped a bit, by the time the hall started to heat up it was time to leave! Sometimes one can't win for losing LOL!
The class went ahead anyway, we all usually have a blazer or sweater with us but this time none of us did because it's usually too hot in there, like I said, can't win... The students are troopers though and didn't give up, one good thing with it being quite cool, everyone was awake through the whole class! Between the space heaters and hot coffee we made it through the class with THREE brand new patterns for them to learn in 3 hours.
We started off with grading the pleated skirts which turned out FANTASTIC by the way! Then we covered the semi-circle skirt with full circle flounces, two formulas in one, love this skirt. Discussed the properties of the fabric and design at length to understand how they work together and how they impact the finished garment, sometimes one has to "read the tea leaves" so to speak to have the best possible outcome.
The class also got to learn how to add a crotch to a skirt pattern to make gauchos, talk about going in a totally different direction, they got it right away!
The third section was completely different as it was from the old version of Book 2 so the class didn't even have the benefit of looking at it on their own time, I sent them a picture by email to print and bring to class and that was all they knew about the project. Anyway we analyzed it and now there is homework!
Homework is to:
So I have been having laptop issues again, the second time in a month that it has been in the shop! I actually started writing this post that sounded much better then the stupid thing decided to shut down without any notice at all! It just went dead then started up again... I'm not happy with this.
Anyway I really don't like not communicating with my students for an extended period of time...
This down time I kept myself busy by making a bunch of throw pillows for my couches, Fabricland had a great sale on the pillow forms so I took advantage of it and used up a bunch of fabrics I had in my stash, even used some trim!
The other things I did were some home dec alterations for a very good client, don't usually take those on but made an exception in this case. The alterations consisted of making 2 bedskirts, one queen and one king size, lengthening a Roman shade I had made for her a few years ago (she changed location of the shade to a longer window), made a square pillow into a rectangle plus removed and replaced an elastic waistband on a skort.
Made a skirt to show the class on Thursday what is expected of them when they work on this assignment over the Holidays. It's from the old version of Book 2 with only one back vertical seam, the rest are circular that begin on one side of the back seam and end at the hem and eventually on the other side of the back seam! Clear as mud huh?!
Hopefully this will be the last time I have issues with this laptop...
Take care and stay safe
Great virtual class with Kerise, we did have some technical difficulties with Skype it kept freezing but in the end we managed to get the work done!
We re-took the measurements because there seemed to be some issues with the mock-up being too tight in spots, quite the contrast to the first mock-up that was too large. So when there is a discrepancy like that always go back to the measurements and re-assess.
In fact I never write down my horizontal measurements I take them with every new project. The vertical measurements don't change so I have them memorized, too bad I'm not getting any taller LOL!!!
Homework is to draft and sew another mock up using the revised measurements, making the sway back adjustment as well as the adjustment at the underarm for the side seam. Hopefully we will have better luck with the technology on Monday...
Another great class yesterday! The ladies keep stepping up to the challenge in the advanced skirts class, Book 2. They were given a choice of 4 styles of pleated skirts to choose from and create one of the styles taking into account the adjustments from the last class to have a good fit the first time.
Two chose to make a pleated skirt with a yoke to the hip line and knife pleats attached to the yoke which was to be cut on the bias to avoid a lot of matching. The pleats were all hand pleated using the vertical plaid as the guide, no measuring tapes in this one! The only measurements they were allowed to use were the hip width and skirt length, the rest had to be done completely by hand.
Two chose to do a skirt with 4 large box pleats matching the plaid at the seams with one feature going straight down the centre front as well as the centre back. Seems easy enough but it's not especially when the pattern piece is one width and the plaid is another!
These skirts look so nice when they are done properly, very sophisticated and professional, coupled with the fabulous blazers they made in the previous semester they look polished and ready for business!
Homework is to finish the skirts and they are to be brought to the next class for grading.
Here is a picture of the work in progress to see the painstaking work involved in hand pleating, first pin the hip, then shape the waist in accordance with the dart depth on both the front and back, which means unpinning and re-pinning all the pleats at the waist! Then the hand basting, finally the machine stitching. All this has to be done with the hem already finished.
Kerise has been working hard, it has been a while since our last class, she has also been under the weather, hoping she feels back to 100% very soon!
A very bright student who has figured out the sway-back adjustment on her own with very limited instruction! The mock-up she created fit very well especially the back, it was smooth around the waist, there were a few issues originating from the side seams but easy enough to fix with a bit of instruction. What is a sway-back you ask? Well it's when the centre back bunches at the waist and smooths out towards the sides, the curvature of the spine is more pronounced in some people making the centre back seam appear too long. To fix this problem one must create a horizontal "dart" with the widest point at the centre, feathering it to the sides. The dart depth is determined by how much bunching there is, the more bunching, the deeper the dart. I have had to remove up to FIVE cm at the centre as an alteration on a finished dress! Thank goodness it had a seam at the waist! I had to remove the zipper, make the adjustment and then replace the zipper, it was a complicated adjustment, the wearer was so happy with the outcome.
Anyway Kerise is hoping to have more classes with less time in between before the Christmas break which is just fine by me.
Homework is to create a mock-up using the same pattern as before but this time with the correct seam allowances on all sides to see the difference on how the dress will fit. Next class will be on Friday November 20.
Keep up the good work!
I thought I would really challenge these ladies today with not one but two skirt to cut and sew in one day!
They were supposed to originally sew one asymmetrical skirt with pleats on the left side, back zipper and waistband, but last class I saw how they all finished early and said to myself "Self you have to challenge this class even more!"
So I added a new project I felt the class would like to learn and perhaps keep them in class a little longer, once the asymmetrical skirt was completed they had to chalk a skirt on fabric, cut and sew it in the last hour and half of class.
I thought, rubbing my hands together, they will never finish on time.... hahahahaha
Guess what, not only did they finish both skirts, THEY FINISHED EARLY!!!
Joke was on me! I could not be more proud of this class!
Homework will be to finish any unfinished work on the skirts.
Next class students will choose one skirt to work on, the class will be looking at different pleated skirt styles suitable for stripes or plaids. This assignment will be sewn in its entirety (no lining), we will be using plaid fabric.
The pants sewing course is up and running!
This is the third course for beginners to learn how to draft and sew their own pants that fit!
Take advantage of the opening special of 15% off the registration until November 6, 2020, go to https://le-grand-chic-italia-school-of-fashion.teachable.com/courses for more information. There are pricing plans to suit every budget!
In this course students will learn so much more than just sewing a pair of pants, they will learn how to install a lapped zipper, how to slip-stich a blind hem, how to properly install a waistband plus a bonus lesson on how to install a facing instead of a wasitband if that is the preference. If you want to use a commercial pattern, that's fine too, the important thing is you will have learned many tricks of the trade that commercial patterns don't provide in their instructions.
I would highly recommend drafting your own pattern but in the end it's your decision, you have to do what you are comfortable with. If you do choose to take the pattern drafting route then there is a treat for you, a discount on the tools when you register for the drafting course. This is probably the best time to challenge yourself with something new, learn a new skill that will give you a lifetime of well fitting clothes you will love to wear!
Well these ladies are speed demons when it comes to pattern drafting! I decided to challenge them and have them draft out 2 patterns instead of 1 yesterday, I gave them one hour each to draft an asymmetrical skirt with rouching on the left princess seam and one with pleats on the same side. They had to draft a new master pattern then create the pattern pieces for each skirt from that. We had a discussion on various asymmetrical styles based on the week before and they came up with 8 different styles then I did a demo and they started drafting. The long and the short of it is they were done by 3:15!!! 45 minutes ahead of schedule!!! They work so fast that I have to up my game, they are challenging me to come up with new and improved lessons.
Homework is to create two mock ups from the patterns created in class these will be fit on the body in the morning. Please choose ONE of the styles worked on in the last two classes, this is your assignment for the AM.
PLUS we will be learning how to chalk a pattern on the fabric cut and sew it together also in its entirety in the afternoon. Please have enough fabric for a simple pencil skirt in a solid colour as well as a zipper and button to complete the task. This is an add-on to the syllabus to learn some short cuts in pattern making. You will be allowed to use a tracing wheel and paper to mark your fabric unless you prefer to tailor tack or the fabric is too thick for the tracing wheel to go through... I'm not so mean after all... :)
Anyway great job ladies!
Great start to the new semester in a brand new book!
The blazers were graded and everyone did exceptionally well, the grade was made up of 50% fit and 50% workmanship. I can tell you that everyone received the full marks for the fit, very proud of these ladies!
Also the class received their certificates of completion from Italy, well deserved after 2 years of work. Congratulations!!!
We started off with asymmetry in skirts, they surprised me with the speed and accuracy with which they completed the task of the first asymmetrical skirt pattern! We even finished a bit early which is unheard of in these classes, usually we run overtime...
There is homework,
Homework is to create a mock-up of the skirt on page 12. Be sure to have the over/under laps on the bottom part of the skirt.
Because you are such great students, I asked you to think of a new asymmetrical skirt style using what you learned in class, you came up with two ideas now I would like you to come up with 2 more ideas that will be conducive to the style we learned yesterday.
I hope you remember what was discussed because I do and I want to have 4 different styles next class. This is only a conceptual exercise not be drafted or sewn.... yet... You may use the designs discussed in class as well as two more new ones.
Maria Calautti, "Jack of all trades"