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1  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Embroidered handkerchief - 1800s-ish on: May 21, 2013 09:29:25 AM
I sewed up a handkerchief from a piece of cotton remnant... it seemed the right weight and weave for one. And then I added some embroidery to enter it into The Dreamstress's Historical Sew Fortnightly. It's all handsewn; it was pretty much my "take on a train" project.

Before washing, with the drawn lines still visible:

After a wash:

The pattern was really just improvised as I went... so it's slightly wobbly, but I'm quite happy with it in the end.
2  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / 1950s-inspired Little Black Dress of Win on: October 20, 2012 10:17:58 AM
Sorry I forgot to write anything at first! Cheesy

A LBD made of my own pattern (though based on a free Lekala pattern, the modifications were so extensive it's really my own now). The fabric, ribbed, is mostly rayon, with some stretch but also enough body for the skirt to hold the shape nicely.

My favourite feature, though, is the V-neckline in the back and the shaped sleeve hems. And topstitched facings.

The jacket I'm wearing it with is a 70s thing I got from my friend's mother, with buttons that my grandfather made.

And the sleeve!
3  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / A swimsuit for a Barbie doll on: October 29, 2009 10:27:31 AM
I joined a "Miss pageant" competition with one of my dolls, whom I call Milada. The first thing we had to make was a swimsuit. It's nothing special, my swimsuit, but I had wanted to make something like that for Milada anyway, I quite like it...

It's sewn from a thin, one-way stretchy fabric, and lined in the same, because it was a bit transparent. Originally it was a thrifted blouse. The straps are made from a ribbon, and I also used it for finishing a slit in the back - I had to add it, because the fabric is less stretchy than I expected. If you wanted to see the slit, I'll add a photo later.

It closes with a loop and a bead.

I had 50s-60s in mind, that's why there's the headband - but the judges pointed out it's not exact, so consider it just a slight inspiration...
4  CLOTHING / Costumes: Discussion and Questions / Anyone willing to swap Simplicity 4055(regency gowns pattern)?NOT NEEDED ANYMORE on: June 07, 2009 10:27:36 AM
EDIT: My sister has bought the Sense & Sensibility e-pattern. Thank you very much for your considerations; I don't need the Simplicity one anymore.

I'd like to make some regency dresses eventually. But I'm from the Czech Republic and buying the pattern from the US would be a bit too difficult and pricey for me (I don't have credit card). So I'd like to know if anyone had a redundant regency pattern in their stash and was willing to swap it with me for... something. Fabric, maybe.

I'm not desperate. I can try to draft my own pattern if I turn desperate. But this would make life easier for me. Smiley
5  COOKING / Recipes and Cooking Tips / "Preheat to 400P" + "cornflour"? - a translation related question on: April 13, 2009 10:32:20 AM
I'm Czech; and as school homework (English at university) I have to translate part of a recipe. The recipe says "Preheat the oven to 400P/200C/Gas 6." And I have no idea what "400P" means. I'm not able to find that by simple googling. Could you, please, explain to me? We're using only Celsius around here; and it doesn't look like Fahrenheit either...

Oh, and when I'm already asking... it's a recipe for lasagne and among other things it also uses cornflour, in the sauce. I've never made lasagne, so please, could you tell me what kind of cornflour that should be? Wikipedia gives me these options:
  • Cornmeal, flour ground from dried corn
  • Cornstarch, the white, powdered starch of the maize grain; in UK usage, cornflour normally has this particular meaning.
  • Masa harina, the flour of hominy
  • Wheaten starch, in Australia.

Thank you very much.
6  FIBER ARTS / Spinning: Discussion and Questions / Make a spindle with a CD on: January 30, 2009 12:22:29 AM
I found this thing and I love it. I've never tried spinning, but seeing how easy and cheap it is to make your own spindle, maybe I'll try it one day...
The site's in Czech, but I think you can figure out what's going on from the photos.

(I already posted this in the old CD's thread in the reusable section of Craftster, but I think it will be even more useful here, so I'm reposting.)
7  CRAFTY BUSINESS ADVICE / Get Product and Website Opinions / Fabric brooches - How much could I ask for these? on: October 02, 2008 11:38:17 AM
I want to try earning some money by selling these to fellow students via my school's information system. And I'd love to know your honest opinion about how much I could ask for them. How much would you give for such a thing?
One is about 4,5 cm / 1,7 inch in diameter.

8  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / Braided copper wire ring on: July 07, 2008 11:18:48 AM
Just a little thing to make myself happy.

The method is simple: three pieces of copper wire, their ends gripped in a vise, braided. I flattened the braid a bit in the vise and then hammered it carefully (on the metal vise, because wooden table turned out to be too soft a surface). I cut the ends (it was too long; and also to have a nicer finish) and shaped the hammered braid into a ring.

And this is what it looks like on my hand. Well, looked, before I smoothened the ends a bit more.

9  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / "Andrea" blouse - My first pattern (IMG & writing heavy) Pattern link added on: June 06, 2008 02:37:53 AM
EDIT 15/06/08: I uploaded the pattern to BurdaStyle: http://www.burdastyle.com/patterns/show/3651  Only in my size, but it might be of use to some of you. (My size means approximately: bust 88 cm / 36,6 inches, waist 68 cm / 26,7 inches.)

First of all, credits:
I used JJ's bodice sloper from BurdaStyle as a base for this.
I followed the instructions for raglan sleeve on VintageSewing.info - although I was a bit careless, which caused some problems during the construction, but all well what ends well, I smoothed it out again. The biggest problem with that tutorial is that the shoulder seam ends up perfectly straight, which creates "square shoulders" and ugly pointy things. So I had to add there a curve, gradually, and check what it looked like on me. But it's all right now.
I made the basic sleeve pattern according to the book Make Your Own Patterns by Rene Bergh (I borrowed it from local library). Again, I did it carelessly, because I was too lazy to be bothered by the whole long sleeve pattern (too lazy to pick a bigger piece of paper). I suppose that's the reason why the sleeve came out too tight - but I'll come to that later. I fixed that too, don't worry. Cheesy
Oh yes, and I named it after a little girl that was babtised in our church the day I finished it.

And here's the result:

I had the lines in mind for a while. I got inspired by a lovely silk necktie I bought in a thrift store. I thought, how cool it would be to sew a blouse/top with the necktie fabric as a "stomacher"?
Here's my first idea:

Then I saw this lovely orange silk top on BurdaStyle and was amazed by how similar it was. So I decided I really should try mine out, because I saw it worked in reality.

I did what many other people do: because it was an experiment (my first attempt at drafting / altering a pattern), I knew I didn't want to ruin my lovely silk (and I didn't have more fabric to go with it anyway...), so I used a thrift store child's duvet cover, cotton print. I got it for 10 CZK (= a ridiculous price for that amount of fabric), so I knew I didn't have to worry if it went wrong. Although I probably would have worried, because I love(d) the fabric...

Because the fabric was casual, I decided against the lacing and for a simple zipper at side. Because of that I changed the seam lines in back to resemble those in front. (I actually wanted to do that at first even in the sketch, but it didn't seem right with the lacing. But now, with the final result, I think it will be all right. It always looks a bit different in sketch...) I also changed the front seam lines a bit - on the sketch the front pannel keeps narrowing on the way down, while in the pattern I broadened it again from the waist.

At first I wanted to use the red piece from the previous photo for the piping, but then it turned out to be a bit too aggressive. I realised I had a yellow cotton at home (I had bought it in the same thrift store some time before) and that it matched the yellow in the print nicely, so I used that. I also at first had the piping in the front seams, too. But sister told me it looked wrong from the side view (which is a view I cannot see myself, obviously), so it went out again. I actually like it more now, too. It's more subtle this way.

Now, the sleeves. When I first tried it on, when the side seams weren't sewn yet, it was obvious that the sleeves came out too tight and that I wouldn't be able to raise my arms if I left it at that. But I didn't want to draft  new pattern and I don't know how to alter it without it, so I solved it by adding underarm gussets:

It's simply a square piece of fabric, cut so that the diagonals (matching the seams) are on bias. That is, the sides of the square follow the grain line. The picture has enough detail in it, so I think you can see it.
Now it's very comfortable, I'm happy with it and I think I'll leave the pattern as is, with the gussets.

Here's the zipper under left arm:

It's, again, yellow. Just for fun. We had it at home, ripped from some old clothes, I suppose; so I didn't have to buy one. When I put the blouse on, I don't even need to open the zipper (I think it's because of the broad neckline), but it's better that it's there, for taking the blouse off.

Here are the pattern pieces, minus the neckline facing. I made the pattern from some ads, because just like I didn't want to ruin nice fabric, I also didn't want to ruin nice paper. Because it was huge, newspaper size, it had been folded and kept folding back, so I had to put there the cups to keep it flat.

In general, I made the pattern by drawing and cutting the style lines and closing the darts.

I also did a very uncanonical thing: I lengthened the pattern pieces of JJ's sloper (because it was shorter than my body) by simply lengthening the seam lines.
You SHOULD NOT do that. There are lines on the pattern to indicate where to cut it and lengthen/shorten by moving the pieces and smoothening the seam lines.
However, I COULD do that. Because my waist measurement is one size smaller than my bust measurement. So the narrowing created by this uncanonical way is no problem for me, it's actually what I want.
Even then I ended up broadening the back again for about 4 cm for better fit in the end. That's another "problem" of mine - my hip size is one or two sizes bigger than my waist size. (Which also causes problems with trousers, as you can see in the back view photo... the wrinkles are from wearing a belt. However, since when the photo had been taken, I solved it; I added darts and the trousers now fit perfectly.)

So does the blouse. I'm really, really happy with my "Andrea" pattern and you can probably look forward to seeing more of them from me... I even think that if I lengthened it, it could make a cute little summer dress. With A line skirt, because that's what I like most. What do you think?

Oh yes, and if you are quite a beginner as I am and would be scared of sewing so many curves, here's a BurdaStyle How To for you:
I cannot say I really followed it word by word, but I kept the advice in mind when making it and it really helps a lot.
10  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Orange elephant in its natural environment on: December 28, 2007 11:34:54 AM
My sister studies Dutch and likes orange colour, so when I obtained a big piece of orange stretch-velvet-like fabric, which is my favourite material for stuffies, I thought an orange stuffie would be a perfect Christmas gift for her. In the end I decided to make her an elephant. (Because our family has a tradition of being animals - like I am a marmot - and her boyfriend is an elephant; and an orange elephant sounded like fun.)

The fabric turned out to be quite an uneasy to work with... it's synthetic, so the wrong side wasn't nice to touch (unlike the right side, fortunatelly), and it tore off and was losing hair when cut, which made me sneeze... but it was finished in the end and, what is most important, SHE LOVED IT.

In the end we decided the orange elephant (which she was "flying" with...) is something between the golden piglet one is supposed to see when fasting on Christmas Eve, the pink elephant one is supposed to see when not fasting with alcohol Grin, and The Flying Dutchman.

Here the orange elephant was photographed in its natural environment, among fruits and above all oranges. (Or maybe tangerines.) Photos were taken with flashlight, which, in my opinion, shows well how shiny the fabric is.

I forgot to mention I made it using one of the patterns I got from my grandma:
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