I originally was not going to make any goals post, but after reading some post from fellow bloggers, I decided that it might be a good idea to set a few. Last year I only set one goal and I don’t think I was successful. The goal was to sew more, but I ended up sewing less but perhaps more challenging projects.
This year I will try to be in a better spirit and set some goals that I will enjoy completing.
1.) Sew at least 10 new garments for myself This my not seem like a lot but I feels it is at least realistic. Even though I just started a project this weekend, I am still not fully in the sewing spirit. Going home, climbing into bed under cozy covers and watching YouTube or Hulu still feels like the thing I look forward to doing each day. However, If I can make 10 new garments this year, no repeats that would be completely awesome. I am even thinking about doing to Wardrobe Architect, we shall see how that pans out.
2.) Draft/Drape myself 2 garments. I know two garments sound weak, especially after all the pattern-making that happened last year. However, I plan to make some garments for myself and at least one of them I hope to be a challenge for me, since I really want to draft a jacket/blazer.
3.) Seriously finish some UFO. I have several that I really want and some that I really should REALLY finish. Especially my co-worker/friend’s jacket. I told him I was going to make it several years ago and just dropped the ball. Since he purchased fabric for it, I really need to stop being a jerk and finish it. I also have some coats and shirts that I need stop being afraid to finish.
4.) Blog more and get back into the community. Since I have two blogs now, I really should be able to blog more. Also if I keep up with the above goals, then I should be able to have more post here. The other blog is much easier since I am actively taking care of my skin most days. I really how I can reconnect with some of you, because I really enjoyed our exchanges and also love hang out with ya IRL.
5.) Travel. Not related to sewing per se, but last year I did travel to hang out with sewing peeps and I hope that can happen again. However, I really want to get my passport so I can travel outside of the US. I haven’t been abroad in a long time and I probably should do something about that, Right? Also, since one of the places I am thinking of relocating to one day is out of the country, I will need a passport to do that.
6.) Commit to learning Korean. Even though I started learning the Korean language this summer, I feel like I am still stuck learning Hangul (alphabet). It really isn’t enough to listen to music and watch shows/movies in Korean. I really need to commit and even force myself to have conversations.
7.) Dance & Sing more. At some point I stopped dancing and singing around the house. I really need to get back to that. Not only does it boost my spirits, it also is my little exercise time. Well, that’s that.
Do you have any goals for this year, even if they are simple?
That’s a laughable title, isn’t it? Considering that I didn’t sew much or blog much.
I spent most of the beginning of the year working on my school project. You can see the post here, here and here. Working on the Jekyll and Hyde Outfit was a lot of work and I did learned a lot. It was very challenging. I am glad that I got the chance to work on this project. I hope to do a similar project in the future.
I was able to squeeze in a my lovely Lola dress, while work working on the school project, along with a secret project that I hope one day to share with you all. I think the Lola is my favorite me-made garment ever. I am very proud of how it was made and it’s super cozy. Plus POCKETS!!!
After I finished the school project, I was completely wiped in regards to sewing. However, I was craving a garment for myself. I went to JoAnn’s and grabbed some lace fabric that had lining and 2 inch elastic band. All I had to do was sew up one seam to make a simple skirt. Instant gratification!!
This summer I was gifted with Closet Case File’s Nettie by the lovely Heather from Closet Case File Patterns. Instead of making a body suit or dress, I decided to be daring and I made a crop top. Even with a gut and back fat, I created a look that did not show those flaws. The trick is knowing your body, what to hide and what to show off. I do want to make more Nettie’s, I just need to adjust the shoulders in the pattern.
The last garment I made for myself was for Oonapalooza. These colorful drop-crotch pants were inspired by the Silk Romper Oona made this summer. I am one of the few Americans that actually like drop-crotch pants, so I thought it would be awesome to have my own pair. Especially after seeing Oona’s romper with a drop crotch. However, these pants only got worn once and I don’t like them on me. I think the main reason I don’t like them, is because they are too long. The foot part kept getting under my foot and so now the hem worn out. Yuck. I think I might turn this into a skirt one day.
After that, the only thing I started sewing was a remake of the Xmas gift from last year that did not fit my friend. It’s not finished tho, because I need to hem it. Embarrassing.
Most of my lack of sewing and blogging here has to do with how I felt this year. This was a bad year. Since I spent most my time at work and work was unpleasantly trying. I was in a real bad way most of the year. I spent a lot of time solo, which I am sure was not particular good for me. I really felt like walking out on my current life and starting a new one, again. This is not off the table, either. I know I really want to leave San Diego, but I am also thinking of leaving the US. I am really happy that 2014 will be over in a few hours.
Okay now let’s talk about some positive things that happened this year. I went to NYC and got to hang out with a bunch of awesome people. Went to LA several times and also hung out with awesome people. I went to an amazing convention/epic concert. I made a local friend that shares my new-found love for Korean music & culture. I decided to start learning Korean (I need a of work).
I went to a Draping workshop taught by Karolyn Kiisel. Yup, the Karolyn Kiisel that’s behind Draping: The Complete Course. The workshop was really awesome. Karolyn is a great teacher, lovely person. I really hope she teaches another workshop in 2015.
During the day workshop, we had a demo, lunch and we got to drape two garments. We stuffed the dress forms to fit our own shape. I had to stuff my dressform a lot because I got a lot going on. LOL It’s really interesting to go from Flat Patternmaking to Draping. I do enjoy Draping but I still REALLY enjoy Flat Patternmaking. Yeah, I am weird.
Other notable thing I did this year was getting into Skincare, mostly Asian Skincare. It started with falling in love with sheet masks. I saw them somewhere and thought they were the most amusing thing. I ordered a bunch and would send creepy Snapchats to my friends. Thinking about it now cracks me up. Surprisingly, I really like what the sheet mask did to my face afterwards. This pushed me into using toner, which did wonders for my complexion. Which ended in a spiral of what is my new skincare routine. I use about 5 – 8 items in my basic routine, I know it sounds crazy but my skin is brighter, complexion is more even than before and much, much more moisturizing. By no means, is my skin perfect but it has improved. I even started a beauty blog, but mostly focus on skincare. If you are interested you can check it out here.
Well, that was my year pretty much. I really hope 2015 is better than 2014. I hope I gain my drive back and jump back on the sewing and patternmaking horse. I hope I get back into dancing in my kitchen after work and committing to learn Korean. Getting better skin and having fun with makeup would be awesome too. Finally, trying to figure out some important decisions in my life and moving on.
How was your 2014? Do you look forward to 2015? Do you have any goals for the new year?
Have you been itching to see the final design? I am excited to share it with you all, but I am going to hold off just a little. I know, I am so mean.
You can read part 1 & 2 of this series if you are interested.
A quick review of the steps I took, before the big reveal
Concept – Basically, this is where you come up with theme. It could be as simple as black & white separates or Kpop Jekyll & Hyde. During this step you might keep a photo-board of images, colors, fabrics, whatever you might find inspiration from.
Design– Taking your theme and creating garments that represents that theme.
Patterning – Creating a paper template for your designs or working it out on a dress-form
Muslin/Sample Garment – Sewing up your pattern to test the fit, making other tweaks and just see if it works in general.
Now on to the last step… Making your dreams into reality!!
Making the Final Collection
If you have not made a sample garment, this is where you will collect all your supplies, because of course, you can not make a garment without your fashion fabric, notions and interfacing. Let me tell you I purchased so much black fabric and white fabric, I don’t know what to do with the leftovers. The black fabric I’ll be able to use but the white fabric…. Not a fan of wearing white really.
You might happen come across this scenario: Go on various fabric shopping trips only to come home and the fabric just doesn’t work together. So, always keep swatches with you when shopping. I purchase my fabric in NYC, LA and San Diego for this project and even the weekend before the fashion show, just before cutting out the final pieces I still was not happy and ended up going to the fabric store. It happens.
Luckily, once you find the fabrics that works for your project, all you have to do is sew the garments up as normal. Always pre-treat and test the garments before cutting out anything. This was a must for me, some fabrics I hand washed, while others I tossed in the washing machine. Oh yes, hand washed and machine washed fabrics are combined in the garments for this project. You also should test your interfacing and stitching. For me I tested the Palmer/Pletsch PerfectFuse Light and Medium Interfacing and ended up using the Light for the waistbands and Medium to interface the facing on the jacket. They are still running a sale $19 for 3 yds with 60 width or 66′ width, check it out. Since my jacket used 5 different fabrics, I had to do test samples to make sure they played well together.
The bonus final step for creating your collection that you might not even think about until the last minute is Presentation.
What the heck am I talking about. For my 1st Collection, I presented my finished look at the School’s Fashion Show. I am super happy that I have modeled in fashion shows around San Diego, so that I knew how I wanted to present my work. Looking back, it is kind of funny because, it might seem like my model walked into the wrong show, in a very awesome way. I really thought about how I wanted her to look. Head to toe. I did both her hair and make-up. Shopped for hair extension, dyed hair extensions, full Trice Salon services, researched good and evil make up looks and quick runway modeling coaching. All that said, I think I nailed it and I know it was a great idea to make her the last model, so she could close out the show. She pretty much stole the show, she gave a fierce runway. Mama proud.
Hehe, I know you guys are like, Geez Trice, shut up and show us the pictures. Okay I will stop tormenting you all.
Let’s start off with my design sketch and compare it to the final look.
Now it’s time for the Final Reveal!!!
I do want to thank my dear friend and model for letting me abuse you all semester. And sorry for using you like a pincushion. Love ya. Also want thank her Mister, my friend and photographer, for not getting upset that I stole your lady. Love you too.
Well there you go friends, what I spent a good chunk of this year working on. And guess what this is only the beginning. But right I am going to squeeze in some selfish sewing.
I am sorry that I am behind on posting this, but of course the closer I was to the fashion show date, the less time I had.
The last post was focused on Concept and Design, this post will be one of my favorite difficult parts.
Did you expect me to say patterning was one of my favorite parts? I bet you did not. I really enjoy pattern making. This is really where the magic happens, where you creativity shines. Once you start learning about pattern-making the more your realize how creative your can be making garments. Yes, there are rules to pattern-making and you have to learn how to make a pattern for whatever your imagination came up within those rules (or try to breaking them). I tend to always want to break them or at least find a difficult way to do things. One of the rules I always want to break is darts. This project I actually embraced darts.
Let me back up a little. In case anyone here does not understand what I mean by Patterning. A pattern is a paper or cardboard template that you use to trace parts of a garment onto fabric. There are varies ways to approach making a pattern; Draping, Flat Pattern-making and Commercial Pattern Customization. There are more ways, but those three are the ways I made patterns for my 1st Collection.
I consider this the fun technique. Using a dressform, a garment could be created with pins and clever positioning. You can actually work in the fabric you intend to use and you can see results right away For this project, I used the draping method to work out tulle part of my top.
This method is what I am most familiar with using. After using body measurements to draft a sloper (master template), I took the sloper and manipulate it to the design I want. I trace my sloper onto a piece of paper and then I freehand my ideas. This time around I freehand on the muslin that I sewed up for the sloper. Then I took measurement from that and plotted it on my sloper.
Commercial Pattern Customization:
This term might be new to you, but the technique is familiar. This technique is probably best if you are not too comfortable with drafting or pattern-making. Taking a pre-existing commercial pattern and making some design changes, which is different from fit alterations. There are some great patterns out there that you can have fun with this techniques, Renfrew, Laurel and Emery just to name a few. After making my very first pant sloper, I decide to use the Clover pant as a base for the pant design.
Muslin & Sample Garments
After you get your pattern drafted, you need to make a muslin of it. By making a muslin, you figure out if the pattern you drafted works. You can solve fit issues as well as finding out that your garment needs some features added. One of the features I found out I needed was a zipper in the center back of the top. My model really could not get properly in and out of top. I really did not want a zipper to show in the back, but at the same time a true invisible zipper was not ideal because the length. The perfect zipper would be an invisible separating zipper. I was told that they did not exist. Yet I managed to find it. I purchased two zippers (1 white, 1 black) from ZipperShipper.com.
Another thing you might figure out during this stage is construction order and most importantly (for me) how to finish seams, necklines and hems. You might not think about that during the designing or drafting stages, but it does come to a reality during this phase.
I went back and forward about whether I was going to line or use bias binding to finish the neckline on the top. I did use bias tape for the arm hole, however because of time, I ended up using steam a seam on the next line. :0
After making the muslin, you will need to make another pattern draft of changes you made in the muslin. You possibly will have more than two drafts. Always mark each draft, and don’t get rid of them sometimes you have to go back to the first one as reference. I only made 2 drafts for this project. I only really had time to make 2 and any other changes I made, I made in the garment.
You also might want to make a sample garment after you worked out everything, and it is best to do this in the fashion fabric or something very similar. I mostly skip this step except for making the pants. I have a mostly finished sample or wearable muslin in a fabric very close to the final fabric. After that, you are probably ready to work on the final garment.
I will go over the final stage in the last post of this series. For now here is a sneak peek into the final garment.
Disclaimer: Sorry about some of the camera phone quality images in this post.
If you have read several of my post for this year, you will be aware that I am taking an Advance Pattern-making class. The class is about making your first Collection. I have been sharing pictures of my process on Twitter/Instagram. However, everyone does not use Twitter or Instagram, so I decided to do a little series about the path to my first collection.
So I knew exactly what my Theme would be for class before the semester even started. Sadly, once class started, I realized I had to calm my ideas the hell down. This made my concept a little tricky.
I bet you are curious what my concept/theme is! Anyone that knows me, knows that I have a soft spot for things Asian. I took Japanese for my foreign language credit in college, my first clothing item I sewed up was a Kimono blouse and I really don’t need to get into food. In all honestly, I didn’t realize I had a LOVE for Asian things until a few years ago. My current focus is with Korean culture and this lady loves some Korean Pop music. It’s a not so secret, secret pleasure. A lot of it reminds me of music from the late 80s, early 90s. Feel good music you can dance too. I have a strong bias towards Korean Boy Groups to make matters worst. In the 80s/90s it was American Girl Groups.
Okay, back on tract. I don’t remember how it came to me, but I do recall it was very much like a light bulb moment. Like YES, there is no other option. I was mad excited about this idea, still love the original idea. My concept was inspired by my second favorite K-Pop group, Vixx’s Hyde music video.
Warning: This is a dark concept video, so there are snakes, skulls and such.
In case you decide to skip the video, the story line is, these guys are struggling between their good and bad side. The song lyrics plays out in a similar fashion, like a crappy relationship. Nice one moment and a jerk-face the next.
I have watched the above video many times (as well as their others), plus I even read The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. The next step for me was to make an inspiration board. Not only was I inspired by images from Vixx, but also Krystof Stroznya’s Fall/Winter 2012 Collection and even photographs from the 1800s on double exposure.
The next step for me in this process was to come up with designs. Somehow, I got in my brain that I had to create three different looks. So in my head, I came up with a good side, a bad side and the conflicted good/bad. However, turns out I had to make three garments or a 3-piece outfit, which is great labor and time wise but kind of threw me off design wise. I needed to get across Jekyll & Hyde (meets Korean pop idol) all in one look (3-piece outfit). *breathe*
The first real assignment was to make a croqui, make copies and then design 12 garments. From the 12 I had to pick 3 that I would make. This method is a little difficult for me, because I usually always know what I want and I really have strong feelings and focus towards those idea. So, 9 of the garments I designed ended up being mostly BS, that I kind of struggled with. However, some of them I went in after the 3 were picked and played with for other project ideas. I did make some adjustments to my final 3 garments, and guess what, the designs are still being adjusted beyond the design stage. You know I even dream about my design ideas, FOCUS!!!
To end today’s post, I will share with you my first garment. My illustrations are not the best, so I will do a short description for each illustration.
Garment 1: Jacket/Vest, Black and white, armhole princess seam front, waist back darts, feathered back, 5-6 different fabric textures, faced and partially lined.
Come back next week, for Garment 2 and other thoughts on the process.
A few months ago, I happen to oversee on twitter, that Lauren and Clare where planning a trip to NYC. Being the polite rebel I can be sometimes, I asked if I could crash their party. During the time leading up to the date, I was completely on and off about going, mostly due to finances. In the end, thanks to tax season, I was able to go (my Portland trip isn’t looking so good however). I also like to add that this was like a school/business trip for me. I can comfortable say, I purchased two fabrics that was just for me.
Ahem, Okay! Disclaimer: If I forget to mention you or left anything out. I am super sorry.
Shortly, after arriving in New York, I caught up with Clare, Ginger, Oona, Jen, Kelli and Amanda at a super fun craft Happy Hour. As soon, as I walked through the doors, I was greeted by my gals Oona & Jen and was taken promptly to the bar. Start of a good night, right? There was a fun times had at the event. I think I was a lot more silly and chatty that night. I had a tons of energy that night.
The next day, I had a lovely breakfast with Clare and Jen. For some reason the couple sitting next to us kept looking at us. We were excited but I don’t think we were loud, so I guess that they were just jealous.
After breakfast, Clare and I went explored NYC until we met up with my new partner in crime, Amity. Then, Amity and I went to Sephora and I got made-over before heading over to meet Betsy to meet everyone else for dinner. There was a large group and I got to meet so many amazing women. It would appear that I was in the heart of Oona’s Fat Quarter Challenge. I think I missed part of that conversation, probably because I was too busy destroying the margarita pitcher chatting/eavesdropping on the other end of the table. Lucinda and Devra got to witness my sneaky clever margarita behaviour. Oona witnessed it too when I thought she was not paying attention. There were a lot of people there, so I was trying to weave in and out of various conversation. After dinner, Amity and I headed over to NJ (Philly naive grumble) since we were roommates for the rest of the trip. Getting over to NJ was an adventure and we did not get to the house until like 3am, due to waiting several hours at Penn Station.
Saturday, was the big Meet-Up day. Amity and I traveled back to NYC on a Gypsy Bus to go to Devra’s place for brunch. A whole bunch of my favorite people were there, aka all the ladies from my Fall NYC trip, and I got to meet some new favorites. I was a little star-struck when I saw Peter, who I really wished I got to talk to more. Plus, I got to hang out with Carolyn again (we met the night before) and not to get super gushy, but, YES, Carolyn = Awesome Women!!
Then, we all went to the big Mood MeetUup. There was a lot more people there but I didn’t really get to exchange words with a lot of them. 😦 I did finally got to meet Maddie, which was delightful. There was more hanging out involved after Mood. However, after a while I got a bit sick and just need to take it easy.
Sunday, was my last day in NYC and I spent most of it with Devra, Ginger, Clare and Lauren fabric shopping and chatting over coffee.
Whenever, I leave NYC I fell like my heart gets broken. Seriously, NYC is one of my favorite cities. I feel more at home in NYC, then I do in San Diego. I really love cities that have tons of energy, you can fell it flow through you (and I am not talking about the wind chill.) San Diego has a settle down, take it easy vibe, in my opinion and I am not one to really settle. Plus the amount of people in the sewing community that gets together is pretty awesome. So yeah, NYC is like falling in love and getting your hear broken. I met so many amazing people during my trip in NYC, that for a minute I thought I dreamt it. Weird huh?
The weekend after, I still was not done hang out with the sewing community. Christine Haynes had her Book Release party at Sew L.A. It was a lovely event with yummy food and drinks. I purchased Christine’s book for a friend, in hopes that he gets inspired to sew more. The next day, was a fashion district meet-up organized by my dear friend Amity (Yes, we must hang out on ALL the coast). I got to meet more lovely sewing ladies too. Let’s see if I can get them all, Laurie, Laura, (I, of course verbally mixed their names up, thinking to hard about not doing that, looking like dork) Kathy, Kaoru, Jeanette and Angela. I really hope I did not miss anyone. We had a really good time. I hope we get to do this again. I really like hanging out with apparel sewist. San Diego if anything is more of a quilter community, so it gets a little lonely.
As usual, I did not take too many pictures while I was in NYC or LA because I was too caught up in the moments, but here some that I found on my camera. These shots were taken in NYC just before I was about to leave to head back home.
The Lady I traveled across the country to meet: Lauren. I promise you she doesn’t look high in real life. She is way more adorable than I could have imagined. I am trying to talking her into a West Coast visit. Starting in San Diego and working her way up the Coast.
What an Bonus: Clare was such a treat to get to meet. Quite the sweetheart, great company and pretty darn funny.
Ginger, is on my list of people I would blindly follow on an adventure. She is that awesome.
The last time I went to NYC, I got to meet the awesome Devra, but this time I actually got to hang out with her and get to know more about her. Which I am happy I did. She is unicorn and that’s pretty awesome.
Let’s be honest, a large portion of this community is pretty darn awesome. Jennifer made a lovely post here about it. I completely agree with her post. I am super glad I got to send time with the ladies in both NYC and L.A. last month. It was a great experience that I hope will happen again.
Now on to the treats. Besides fabric, I came home with some lovely spoils from NYC.
At one of the Airbnb places that I stayed at, my host provide everything I could need for my stay. The yummy chocolate bar is the only thing I ended up taking with me.
Clare had asked if anyone wanted anything from GB and I was quick to think about Jaffa Cakes. We have an American knock-off call Pims, but I really wanted to try the real deal. I am a huge SPACED (tv show) fan, hence the request.
The lovely Oona, got me a late birthday gift. She knows I love cute Asian things, so this was a great gift. The page markers can be found all over my pattern books.
Maddie stop by Mood for a few hours, which was a treat since I really wanted to meet her. Before she left the group to go home, she handed out some beautiful vintage buttonhole twist.
Minus, the very top fabric, here’s the fabric that I purchased in NYC that was not related to my school project. I have plans for all the above except the last one. No pictures of the Jekyll & Hyde fabric since they are just black or white fabric, which isn’t that exciting.
Well this post has gotten way too long and I won’t torment you all anymore, today. 😉
Devra inspired me to do a weekly post related to my school project, so look forward to that post coming soon.
Finally, I jumped on-board the Victory Pattern’s Lola love train. Why on earth did I take so long? Yeah, I don’t know either.
You all know by now that I went to NYC last month. Once my trip was confirmed, I knew that I wanted to make a dress for that trip and I want to make sure I was going to be warm too. This dress, in this fabric was perfect for the job.
This fabric is an amazing, super cozy. I was completely warm during the cold NYC weather in this Lola dress. I believe the fabric is a sweater fleece, with stretch (YAY) that I purchased on my trek to San Francisco to meet the gorgeous Leila.
There isn’t much I really need to say about Lola that you probably don’t already know. Right? This is indeed a super fast sew, especially if you have a serger. I sergered everything except for the top-stitching on the pockets and stitching down the triangle. You can honestly make this dress in a day.
The next one I make, you can be sure there will be a next, I would like to make it in a lighter weight knit. That why I can wear it more often in SoCal’s warm weather. I think the next version I will go down in size. You can see that I have a lot of extra fabric in that upper back area. I would also like to make an adjustment in the sleeve/sleeve band. For some reason, the 3/4 sleeves bands are always too big, like in my Renfrew. Perhaps my arms are a lot smaller than the rest of my body suggests. I dunno.
Obviously, one of my favorite features about Lola is the pockets. They are so huge, I think I misplace my ring in one of the pockets. I DID find it before it ended up in the washer.
If you want a fast, simple, yet cute dress, you should definitely check out Lola and make her up. The directions are pretty straight-forward and easy to follow. Here are some more pictures from the photo shoot. Mostly silliness.
I got caught by a coworker shortly after this picture. He said he sensed booty shoots were going down, which was true. There is a series of shoots of me touching my booty.
I am still working on my Jekyll and Hyde project for school. I think my teacher is finally starting to see my vision. She gave me a big hug the other day because she was happy I was in her class and that my project was so different from everyone else. Tonight I have class, and I plan to work on the drafting the facing for the jacket, then, cut out my top and sew it up. I also need to drop into JoAnn’s to find some fabric to test the fit on the pants. So much to do. The school is having a fashion show towards the end of May. I have to submit an application to be in it and hopefully, I get selected. I think my piece is interesting enough to be including. Wish me luck.
Okay, I am going to end this post here. Up next will be my NYC/L.A. trip post. It’s gotten so wordy, that I am about to delete it and start over. Okay, until next time.