Vernon Fashion Studio’s Blog

Archive for January 2012

Ann at Gorgeous Fabrics is sewing a Chanel style jacket and she talked about how she stitched down her seam allowances in her January 15th post. We are both using a wool boucle but she didn’t interface her whole fabric pieces like I did. She also didn’t serge her seam allowances like I did. She is using traditional sewing methods to make the jacket like Chanel made their jackets. I am just trying to sew a pencil skirt.

My skirt is lined and if I just leave the boucle seams serged they will stickout and get hung up on the lining and/or look odd over time. So I borrowed Ann’s catchstitching technique and used it to hold down my serged seams.

I am not that big on handstitching but I have to admit, I enjoyed doing this. There are just 2 side seams in the skirt so it didn’t take long to do this. I will probably do this to my jacket, when I get to it.


Where did the first month of 2012 go? I think I got some things done having to do with my New Years Resolutions. Basically, I wanted to work on projects that have been hanging around my Studio for up to 4 years.

First up was a skirt, top and jacket out of fabric I bought back in 2008. My previous post has a photo of the fabric and talked about interfacing the pieces. As of last week the basic skirt is put together, waiting for elastic and hemming. I have not gotten back to it because I have had appts outside the studio and students inside the Studio. I love my students. I have a great group of young gals ages 9 to 13 years old. They have talent and are just fun to be around.

The waistband for the skirt was to be made entirely out of the outer fabric. Unfortunately, wool makes me itchy so I wanted to have lining fabric on the inside and it couldn’t show on the outside. I laid the pieces out, right sides together. Then I measured the width of the band; subtracted 1/8th inch and drew a line. After pinning the heck out of it, I stitched down the line.

Next, I had to get rid of the extra layers of fabric. First iron the  waistband the way it will be on the skirt by folding the outer fabric in half, right sides out. On the lining side there should be an 1/8th of an inch showing.

I used my serger to get rid of the extra two layers inside the waistband.

Thread is an important part of any project. The easy thing to do is to use the ‘sew anything’ thread that comes in the most colors. But it is not always the best choice. A good rule of thumb is to use thread that is the same fiber content as your fabric. Cotton thread on cotton fabric…Polyester on manmade fabrics or blends…silk on silk fabrics. There isn’t wool thread but since it is a natural fiber fabric, look for natural fiber thread. In this case silk is a great choice. I melds into the fabric, practically disappearing. Silk thread is a bit more expensive but definitely worth it. And just one more word on thread; cheap thread is not a bargain. It is made from the inferior fibers left after the good thread is made. Cheap thread breaks easily so it will break when you are sewing and will not hold up well to repeated wearings and washings. Buy the good stuff.

Next week I will get the skirt done. The next project is the whitework and oriental quilt top. I have not finished the top but it is almost done. I went to Embroidery Library and got my designs for the whitework today. They are having a sale if you get their emails. As soon as I have a time slot, I will rearrange the tables in the classroom so I have a big work surface and sandwich the quilt. I will probably stitch-in-the-ditch all the squares then do the embroidery. It will take some time.

I did get one project done. A student gave me some Christmas fabric meant to make tablecloths with. I cut a piece to fit my dining table and had leftover. What to do with it…what to do with it. Tablerunners! I did have to buy a bit of fabric to augment the free fabric and got two runners done.

Gwen over at After the Dress blog( See sidebar) made some adorable toddler outfits from the book One Yard Wonders. One of my students brought her copy of this book to her lesson the other day. It is a great book with some fabulous projects for the home and to wear. I had to have that book so I ordered it from I have a granddaughter who is a little over a year and the toddler outfits will be so cute on her. I also saw that there is a follow up book with a bunch more projects, using a variety of fabrics. I will probably have to have that book too.

Found this on the quilt guild free table. This is the one ironing item I didn’t have.

This post is getting a bit long so I will stop here. Have a great weekend!

We are now better than halfway through January and I have finally gotten started on my first projects. The first project dates back to 2008 when I bought a bunch of fabric from Gorgeous Fabrics(see sidebar) to make a skirt and jacket. It has been in a storage bin since than, just waiting for the right time to be made into something beautiful.

The fabric on the right is the blouse silk charmeuse. The one on the left is the lining and the one on the middle is the wool boucle. Don’t you just love it? One of the holdups was the style of the jacket. I wanted to do a Chanel-style jacket but wanted a twist. Several things floated around in my head but it wasn’t until I saw a Marc Jacobs cardigan in Instyle magazine, a couple of years ago, that I had found my inspiration. His cardigan sold for about $1800 and I think I know why. When trying to figure out how to construct the jacket, I figured out there will be a lot of time spent on the ‘twist.’

The other thing I bought at the same time was the interfacing and I went for the good stuff. I bought Pro-Weft Fusible from Fashion Sewing Supply(I will add them to the sidebar). On Friday I fused half the skirt and on Saturday I fused the other half. I just have the waistband to do. This interfacing is fabulous! I posted some time ago about how to fuse interfacing and I still use that method for all store bought fusibles. However, Pam at Fashion Sewing Supply has another method and since  this is her product, I followed her lead. It seems to have worked great! The thing to keep in mind is you have to give the iron a rest of 4-5 seconds between sections and at the end of the row, I left it to cool a bit. The wool was getting hot and smelled like sweet, very hot hair. I may have over watered a bit but I wanted that protection for my fabric.

Yes, I fused the whole piece of fabric. Boucle is a very loose weave fabric so interfacing will give it stability. I did wish for a flatbed pressing machine. It would have gone a lot faster.

The other project I am working on is not so old. I have wanted to do a white quilt with whitework for many years now but had no idea how to do it. I also thought an oriental quilt would be nice. I saw a picture of a quilt that combined the two and took off from there. Almost two years ago I was in Albuquerque at Quilt Works and they were working on charm packs of oriental fabric. A few weeks later I called and they had them done so I had them send me two packs. This past summer I decided to make the quilt using white broadcloth and the oriental squares. First I made 16 – 9 patch squares with 5 oriental squares and 4 white squares. I got them all a uniform size then cut white squares to match. This is the top/center of the quilt. I still need to add to it for the side drop plus a border and binding. But it gives you the idea.

This will be a queen size quilt with white batting and backing.

Sorry about the post-it note. My shopping list for the fabric store.

Bea and Sadie aren’t the too interested in what I am doing. Wish I could take a nap with them.

When you follow fashion, you notice how others look and style themselves. And some of the people who decide to be on TV, are right there for me to look at and wonder does she really think that looks good?

Two ladies stand out for me right now for what I consider horrendous mistakes with cosmetic procedures. I was watching a new program on the Food Network Canada tonight. It features Guy Fieri and Rachel Ray. Taylor Dane is one of the celebrity’s on this show. Have you seen this? The only thing you notice about her is her lips! She has obviously had her lips plumped with collegen but they look like a hive of bees stung her repeatedly on the lips. I know that look since I was stung on the lip by a bee when I was 13 or so. It is not the least bit attactive! She is not the first one I noticed. There was a bride on ‘Say Yes to the Dress’ with the same affliction. Why would any woman do this and think it was attractive?

Have you seen the commercials for the new movie ‘Joyous Noise’?  What is Dolly thinking?  Actually I think I know what she is thinking. She wants to maintain as young a look as possible, for as long as possible but her face, right now, is not attractive. It reminds me of Joker in the first Batman movie.

This is a case of ‘just because you can do a thing, doesn’t mean you should do a thing’. I just had to vent about this. Taylor drove me over the edge with her fat lips.

There are 3 showings of PR All Stars on the 9th in Canada:
(PST time)
2pm; 5pm; 10pm
For Eastern Times add 3 hours.

Again, they are 1 hour episodes. I hope we don’t have the same problem we had with PR9. Editing down a 90 minute episode to 60 mintes was just not something they did well.

If you ‘Like’ or go to Project Runway on Facebook they have info on the contestants and the judges and mentor. Since this Facebook page is tied to Lifetime, it would be a good idea to ‘Hide’ it during the run. Hate spoilers! 

The judges and mentor are not the same old gang we know and love. Slice says Issac Mizrahi and Georgina Chapman(Marchesa) will be the judges and Joanna Coles from Marie Claire will be the Mentor. And Miss Piggy will be a judge for one of the episodes. That should be interesting.

Just one more week!

I want to take this time to wish you all a happy, healthy, prosperous 2012.

Don’t forget your hobbies this year. They are an important part of a happy, healthy life.