Friday, July 16, 2010

Think, Think. . . Ponder, Ponder. . . CUT!

So. . . I put the top on the dress form and pinned the valance (skirt) around it.
I left it there hanging quite askew with pins everywhere.
And I walked past it all day long.

Dress or jacket?
Long or short?
Is it going to open down the front?
Which way will the pleats on the valance go?

This morning I removed the stitching from the valance
(forming the casings for the curtain rod) and washed, dried and ironed it smooth. The piece is now much longer. I think I added about 10 inches to the length. All the stitching marks and fold lines came out nicely.

And somewhere during this process, I decided on the dress.
I am not sure why.
But it seemed the way to go.

The problem that I had been concerned about is on each end of the valance. Where the pleats are gathered up; there are 9 layers of fabric - well 18 if you count the lining! And I wasn't sure how that would hang. So, I messed around with it for quite awhile on the ironing board. And holding up to me to see the drape.

. . . And then it was time.

There is that moment when you decide to pick up the scissors and you know there will be NO GOING BACK. And so I cut.
I removed the bulkiness of all those pleat layers.

Then, I seamed up the two ends of the valance.
Now I have a "skirt". Basically, with a small kick pleat style slit in the back.

However, when I finished sewing it together,
I realized the pleats on either end had not really been exactly even. Hanging as a curtain valance, nobody would have ever noticed. But bringing those sides together to form a skirt, now created a pronounced difference in how far the pleats were from the fringe edges of the fabric.

Those pleated edges which I had trimmed off formed a long piece of nearly finished fabric. I re-ironed this tube of fabric; cut it into three equal pieces and designed 3 small bows.
The first I placed where the pleat lines did not "line up".
And now I have two remaining bows to use elsewhere on the dress.

Actually, I think I know right where to place them!

What is it that they say?
"Necessity is the mother of invention."
I think that's it.

I really hate using the seam ripper and re-doing what I already did. So my projects are full of "work arounds."

Well, check out the photos and see what you think.

I think those tiny bows look a bit classy.
And if I hadn't mentioned it .. . you'd probably think they were PLANNED!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Golden Ideas

Sooo. . .
I have a million ideas. That is not good as it seems to have overwhelmed me.
The base color of the items that I purchased was an array of golden hues. What did I find in my leftovers and scraps that would add to the final garment? Way too much (muchas mas cosas!)

Here goes with a few photos:

I recently made a wedding dress for a beautiful beach wedding.
The dress was gold and I have just a few small remaining scraps of the sequin lace and a few leftover buttons.

I have the leftover fabric scraps from a skirt that I recently made for myself.

And, I found about 2 yards of a matching suede-look fabric with a more earthy brown tone.

And, baubles of every color.
Yikes! My bead collection consists of a bowl of pearls and beads. . . I am quite the disorganized person as I notice in the photo a misplaced button and lost earring back amidst the beads and pearls. Geez! Life is way too "messy" to have everything in a place of it's own.

I would feel lost if I got too organized around here.

OH yeah I found a string of crazy gold pearls that was once upon a time supposed to be part of a retro flapper dress that I never made. And, I will throw that in just in case.

I am aiming for my submission to be for the February issue of the magazine.
Its the "Spring " issue, but it will be out during February, March and April.
Those just seem like months when you'd be still wearing a jacket in most areas.
Hmmm. An embellished jacket in hues of brown & gold with leather boots and a pair of jeans just sounds like it would look completely fantastic.
I am just kinda re-thinking my dress idea.
Perhaps a jacket. That suede fabric could become sleeves and a collar. . .

Well, here it all is:

I believe my next step is to get all of this on the dress form and see what it looks like. I am anxious to see how that curtain valance is going to hang, as I really want to preserve the funky drape of it with that great beaded fringe.

Until next time.

PS Give me some comments! Let me know what you think!

Friday, July 9, 2010

The Project.....unveiled


Thrift Store Purchase for my Altered Couture Project:

Women's Lace lined top 3.99
Curtain Valance 2.99
Ecru cotton Doily 2.99
Bag of fabric scraps 1.99
Total: $ 11.96

~ "Yea!" I made it! Quite under budget for the $20.00 limit for Thrift store purchases.


Curtain Valance:
This was the first piece that I found & was my
inspiration, as it were. It has an interesting pleated
look to it (note in the top photo). I plan to retain the pleats in the garment. The fringes are interspersed with small, gold glass-look beads.

Top: Only the front of the top is lined. The lace has a daisy/floral design. It also was in need of a bit of mending at some of the seams, which I did. And it has a few "pulls" in the lace which I will have to work around.

Doily: My plan is to cut each of the small floral rounds apart. Prior to doing this, I will touch up each intersecting point with Fray-Check so it will not undo.

Fabric: I found a grab bag of fabric and trims.
None of which really matched except two small pieces of a fabric with the look of suede. One piece matches the top and the other piece matches the valance. I am not certain if or how I will use these pieces; but they are good to have.

Next: I am going to scavenge my workshop to discover what other treasures I may find to add to my Ingredients.

SO. . . What do you think? ... any ideas?
How should I put these parts together?
Comment and give me YOUR input!

(My first thought is a dress.) . . . hmmm

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

I had to ReCreate my Blog Site

I had to transfer my Blog, in order to have "Followers".
Now, I did not realize that this would necessarily be a good thing. . .
Or that it wasn't just the expected thing for a Blog-Maker to have it available for you as a normal part of the set-up. But that just goes to show what I know!

Regardless, here are all of your Comments from the last week transferred here!
Thanks for All of your Positive Comments. Whenever I feel bad about myself - I am gonna come read these! Wow.

Now PLEASE become a Follower of this blog (since I went to all the work of transferring it to blogspot.)

This week I am going to post photos of my project.... Don't miss that!

wow really very impressive and a cool idea... best of luck with it.


Dear Naomi, I love the picture with you and Russ, also is amazing to know hoe little you were when you did your first dress. Like I always say, you are very obnoxious talented. LOL

That sounds like a lot of fun! I'm bookmarking your site.


Just got your e-mail Naomi, and I have to say I am not surprised at all.....Except maybe for the fact that you have not done it before. are off to a good start. I don't know about joining you in your project from the Thrift Store, But if I had the time, and I was a little younger, I would do it. Love, Vicki


Cool Naomi :)

This is so wonderful!!!
Love and Blessings to you and your new baby!!!
Nina Joy and Family


How cool!!! This challenge was "designed" (no pun) for you!!! I cannot wait to follow your creation and see how it goes! I never knew about your "scarlett Ohara" dress! Do you have pictures?? how fun!! I wish I had time to do this too.. I'm going to show it to ruthie!
love you!


This is cool! I'm soooo excited to see your "musty dress"! Love the lavander story, when I see it I think of you.


This sounds totally up your alley...have fun! Wish I had enough talent to do the challenge :-)

Wow, cool idea, you can do it, Naomi!! I'll be bookmarking this, I want to watch your progress.


I used to sew, everything..then as time went everything's a lost art...keep up the good work..


This is so you. What a brilliant project for you to tackle...or should I say conquer. Can't wait to see/hear more :)

John Nelson

Sounds neat!! You should check with Vicki for some tips. She found musty old me in some dark corner, and is still attemping to wash me enough times to soften me up. I know you'll do well with your project. john


i have followed your creations on your etsy web site and I am anxious to see your Scarlet dress as i live in greater charleston, SC where Scarlett came after Rett when he said "i dont care a damn Scarlett". So keep up the pictures and make it good. Go Girl.

Samantha R.

This is an awesome idea! I love the pic at the top of the page by the way, very artsy and cool :-)


Naomi I Loved the dress you made!! You are so Artistic and have a great eye when it comes to creating designs of any kind!! I wish you all the best in the contest and I know you will do very well!!! Can't wait to hear more!!!


A treasure of a story, i can not wait to read the ending. Great success and blessings.....LA


You are an amazing woman! I miss your beautiful face so much, and I hope to get to see you before the year's over. Great job on this site - I'll be checking back :)


Naomi, what a great idea for a contest! Your a shoe in. Keep those creative juices flowing. We sure miss you guys. Oh and that picture you guys still look the same, just a few wear marks. Me gusta! Have a great day, Greg


Love the story and what a great dress! Can't wait to see the outfit you make for the contest. Do they have a place we can go to vote on your outfit? P.S. working on coming down in Oct.

Su esposo

I love you and I think what you are doing is incedibly creative and I wish I had the same talent as you "siempe mi amor." RB