Thursday, February 12, 2015


I'm taking a hiatus from sewing for a while. My life has been turned upside down and until it gets back on track I won't have time to do anything. I've created a tumblr full of vintage goodness. Please follow me there!

My Tumblr

Also feel free to follow my Instagram @amy__lola (two underscores!)

My FB, is barely in use anymore and I have made it private for now.

I shall return -- maybe in a few months.

Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Dress #2 -- Decades Of Style 3007 (1930s Button Dress)

Well, looks like my sewing is moving along ok right now! I attempted the Decades of Style 1930s Button Dress to much success!

This was NOT an easy pattern. Intermediate skills AT LEAST are required to make this/make sense of the instructions. There are lots of clipped corners and twisting the fabric "just so" to make sure it is lined up and no open holes or wonk The hardest part was definitely the bodice back:

Those points were a challenge for me. But I somehow ended up sewing them perfectly, along with the ties. I used linen so my ties kind of don't sit perfectly flat, but that's ok. Also, the sleeves "bell" out, but I kind of like that silhouette.

I'm also not too crazy about all those gathers across the back seam there, but it's ok. I can't see them so I won't worry too Kinda like how I forget I have a couple bad tattoos on my back! I also added 4 inches to the hem. I had made this dress previously and I remember it was too short for my aesthetic.

With this dress being somewhat complicated, I have NO IDEA how I managed to make it in December or 2008. Then, I only had THREE MONTHS of sewing under my belt. Unfortunately, I deconstructed my original creations a while ago so I can't properly compare, but here is the only photo of it that I have:

Made in the same exact navy blue linen and red buttons! I really like my newest version, though. I will gladly wear this next time I go out with wool tights and my black Merrell "heels."

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Dress #1 -- Simplicity 6092 (1973)

First make of 2015! It's a fun 70s-does-50s style from 1973:

I made it very similar to the packaging since I had leftover pink-and-white polka dot fabric -- except I made the collar and cuffs black! I love that contrast and it gives it more of a 50s look.

I made no alterations other than widening the armholes. No idea why, but I have found early 70s patterns to have TINY armholes! I'm also using my new tripod for the first time in these photos (so as not to bother my husband!) I still think I might need to bring it up a bit higher.

Overall, this was an easy-ish make and pretty straightforward.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Dress of the Century: 1970-1979

Let's continue the series of catalog pages with one of my very favorite decades for fashion: The 1970s!











Anxiously awaiting a 1970s Fashion Sourcebook to be released February 28!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Morrissey Handbag

Ok, I am a Morrissey lover and have been since 1987. So I made a purse IN HIS IMAGE because he is the only man I love other than my husband:

I made it from Simplicity 4751 -- a 1954 purse pattern. The fabric I bought at Spoonflower. I really didn't think they would actually have "Morrissey fabric", but lo and behold....

Already been asked if it was an "Elvis" bag. Ugh. Lol.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

2014 Round--Up!

It's the beginning of December and I don't think I'll be making anything else in 2014. I'm making bags for friends so that will keep me busy. In 2014 I made a total of 33 clothing items. Some were huge hits! Other were serious misses! But that's what sewing is all about. These were the hits! My favorites:

Simplicity 1609

I made this dress in four different renditions, but this one was doubtlessly my favorite. I wore it a LOT in the spring/summer with my beehive hairdo and knee socks. It fit like a goddamn glove!

Simplicity 4044

I wore this one out quite a bit. It's vintage-y, but still within the realm of what society would deem acceptable for those days I just didn't feel like looking costumey.

Butterick 6055

I've never worn this one out, but I am kinda proud of of it. It was my "Honey Nielsen" dress (google) and it was fun to make. I would wear it if the occasion called, like a costume party.

Simplicity 4019 (1942)

A VAST improvement over the version I made in 2009. I wore this out with my Judy Garland braids. It's a bit costumey, but just enough to be eye-catching and not "WTF"-worthy. Yes, sometimes I just don't want to look costumey in public, but still want to stand out.

Hollywood 1391 (1937)

Never worn out, but so darn 30s I just love it. My fabric choice was spot on! It was fun to make and I really did rip it apart several times just to get it "just right."

Butterick 3138 (ca. 1974)

I was so in love with this after I made it!!! Having made it heading into fall, I haven't had the chance to wear it out -- but once spring hits this baby will be worn to my favorite places. Again, excellent fabric choice and I somehow managed to make it look more 30s than it did on the envelope art.

Vintage Vogue 9000

I LOVED making this. The pattern was rated as Average so it was a bit out of my skill zone, but I learned so much from it, took my time, and came out with an amazing dress that I actually do wear out! My fabric choice, the details, the fit -- I love it! It's not too "out there", but kinda is a little ;)

Ok. Those were my favorites from 2014. Now onto the ones that didn't work at all. Some of them I've already deconstructed for parts:

McCall's 7731 (1965)

The fabric was much uglier when made up (looked cool on the bolt!). The fit was kinda weird, too, even after I fixed it. It became more of a pencil dress on me than a bell-shaped shift dress. I put it on once and then designated it to the "I might need this zipper for something else" pile.

Simplicity 1598 (1945)

Bad fabric choice (I can't NOT see a baseball shirt!) and the fit was really bad. The skirt was fine, but the bodice was abnormally huge. Like, I really think they put the wrong size in the package (it was still factory folded). I know it was supposed to have some bagginess to it, but this was just wrong. I bought the sides in 2.5 inches on each side just to get a nice fit. Still, I think it's somewhat unattractive. I don't like raglan sleeves.

New York "Hollywood" pattern 4141 (ca. 1934)

I think this might be the worst one I made all year. I had such hopes for it, but it just does not look good at all. The gathers on the wrists just look terrible and the fit is all twisty. This is the second "New York" brand pattern I've made from the mid-30s and they both did not turn out well. Neither were difficult patterns, either. But now I know to stay away from that particular brand.

And that is it. I guess that's good that only 3 out of 33 were complete duds.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Dress #33 -- Butterick 5880 (1951 reproduction) and Simplicity 4751 (1954)

This dress is not one of my favorites. I thought it would be a challenge to make, but it was really easy and quick. The rundown:

I lined the bodice, but decided to not line the skirt and it is just fine. I'm glad I didn't -- the hem on this dress is so narrow I can't take full strides and it squishes my boobs when putting it on! I couldn't imagine adding more bulk to that. A slip is just fine.

I hand sewed the bunches at the side. The pattern has you do it by machine, but I found hand to be easier and looks better.

As I knew it would, the neckline gapes on me. I have narrow shoulders and collarbone area, but large boobs (36D). If it fits the bust, it ain't gonna fit the shoulders and my skills aren't good enough to fix this yet.

DAT HEM! Jesus! It's so narrow! I can't take full strides and I feel like I'm wearing a hobble Maybe this dress would be better made out of a stretchy material. The skirt is really, really narrow. I know it gives it that "look", but I just don't find it practical -- even for dressing up and going out (I walk with long, fast strides!)

First bag I ever made. It was very easy. The only thing that needs changing is the interfacing. I used apparel interfacing (all I had!), but it really should be nice, stiff craft interfacing! I'm going to buy a whole bunch after this shopping weekend madness! I will be obnoxious with my bag-matching!