Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!

My Valentine gift to myself this year was permission to sew straight through Friday afternoon and into the evening.  And then picked it all back up and sew again Saturday night and into the wee hours of Sunday morning.  What was the motivation for such endeavors you might ask?!  I guess it was Valentine's Day skirts.  But that doesn't really seem like enough motivation in retrospect.  What I was really going after on this latest round of skirts for my ladies was experimenting on waistbands.  I feel like the perfect waistband is out there, just around the corning, just waiting for me to discover it.  And of course, I forgot to even photograph this waistband, though it may, or may not have taken me longer to make the waistband that it took me to make the whole rest of the skirt.  Maybe for that reason, I'm not totally ready to talk about it yet.  Let me just say, it is a flat fronted waistband, with elastic only along the back of the skirt.  And if that sounds rather obvious to you, let me just that IT'S NOT.  It's super tricky to figure out a really good way to do it like that.  I honestly could probably write a thesis on the topic at this point in time.  But I won't!  Let's just say this little skirt was inspired by Liz's latest Narrtjie's knock-off dress.  I love her fabrics way more than mine.  But I am also determined to use what I have in the stash these days, so sometimes my options are limited.

I guess for only using what's on hand, it's not too bad!  It's festive and pink, and what more could Jane ask for?!

I was totally frustrated that my bow wouldn't stay straight.  I knew that it would if I would just take my time tying it, but who has time for that?!

It's a fake tie anyway, that I top stitched on at the end, mostly ornamental.  I did pleats instead of gathers, and seriously, I'll go into more details about my waistband process should anyone request it.  But after five hours of trying to figure it out (which of course included a few totally geeky sewing discussion with Liz), I thought I really didn't have any more time for a second skirt.  It was almost midnight!  Right as I was about to turn the light off and call it quits, I pictured Ruby's sad face in the morning when only Jane had a new skirt to wear!  I grabbed a pick-me-up handful of M&Ms mixed with nuts, and then pushed on.

And I'm so glad I did, or else I would never have captured this look:

This skirt turned out 100% different than I thought it would, starting at midnight.  I really thought I was going to incorporated the V&Co. gathered heart throw pillow concept, into a skirt.  But then I started thinking that between the gathering of the heart, and the gathering of the skirt, the affect would get lost.  Somewhere around 12:30, I glanced at my collection of biased tape, and with THIS IMAGINE in my mind, I took the skirt in a new directions:

I hate to pick favorites, but I think I really *love* this skirt the best.  

It features a new comfy waistband as well!  I was really determined to forgo the standard elastic casing waistband.  I gathered most of my tips on construction for this skirt from this tutorial.  Note that the tutorial is to make a somewhat similar skirt in a size 3-6 months, which I'd done before.  So for this one, I had to do a bit of figuring and guessing, and hoping and praying, since no model was available.

What a sweet relief when she put it on in the morning that I guessed it all right!  

And as if that wasn't enough sewing for one girl and one weekend, I got to make a few other things.  One especially note worthy item...mostly note worthy in it's degree of adorableness.  Is that a word?!  

We had a cute little friend turning 2!  The pattern comes out of the Anna Maria Horner's "Handmade Beginnings" book.  The pink polka dot fabric is a Riley Blake fabric.  The little featured bird print is a piece of an Alexander Henry fabric.  All purchased randomly at one point or another in Korea.  Sigh.  In Korea, where all fabric dreams can come true...

Happy Valentine's Day.  I hope you find time to do what you LOVE today!    


Flori said...

Oh, so so cute!!! I *love* that denim skirt too. Was it hard to "write" in cursive with the bias tape? I'm guessing lots of pins? Turned out awesome though. I may have to try a "spring" skirt with some of my stash.

Liz said...

I'll need to call you later to get all the details on the waistband debacle. I'm so curious (in a geeky way) how you eventually did it.

And, I have to agree with you that I LOVE the Love Skirt. What a brilliant idea!! Way to pull off two skirts AND a darling little faux wrap dress in one weekend.

What a great Valentine's present!

Rachel's Roost said...

Such cute things! That little bird dress is adorable, and I'm very intrigued by this new waistband. More info!

Annee said...

Flori, you know what, it took more ironing than pinning. With really careful ironing, it makes the cursive writing doable. But biased tape is required since you need it to be able to take the turns. It was actually really fun.

Rachel, the waistband deserves more info, especially given the amount of time I spent trying to figure it out. I will do it again soon, since the next time around I think I'll get it perfect! This time I left about 1/2" to an 1" too much width on the front panel, so the skirt doesn't fit as snug as it should. Lesson learned!

Liz, call me!

Sarah M. said...

Super cute skirts Annee! I love the cursive writing with bias tape. I want to hear what you finally ended up doing with the waistband. I was trying to think about it when you were talking to Liz the other night. Totally confusing!

Ie Li said...

I love those skirts, Annee. Your models are just perfect. Mei Li just looked at the pictures and wants their clothes. I guess I should start sewing.

Allison said...

And the recipient of the dress looks just as cute as you were imagining. It's, in a word, perfect.

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