Matatabi Makers: City Blazer

Hi friends. I’m still here! and I’m still sewing/stitching/(mis)adventuring! Just being a bit slow with writing and photos and … with life in general. But I recently made a linen blazer for this month’s Miss Matatabi Makers contribution, and I love it. LOVE IT! So I wanted to share it here with you, too.

Saké Puppets for Miss Matatabi Makers, ByHandLondon Victoria blazer in linen and nani IROAs I mentioned over on Miss Matatabi’s blog, I purchased the ByHandLondon Victoria blazer pattern months ago and then let it sit on my sewing table. I couldn’t find the right fabric. I went to Mood more than once in search of something fancy, but it was Miss Matatabi’s linens that hit the mark. To bulk it up for cooler weather, I lined the blazer in one of my favorite nani IRO prints. Linen and double gauze are a dream combo, and the natural fibers let the blazer breath but still provide warmth.

Saké Puppets for Miss Matatabi Makers, ByHandLondon Victoria blazer in linen and nani IROThis pattern has a clever construction and was quick to put together. At first I though it was too slouchy and casual. But after wearing it for, uh about 20 seconds, I realized it is exactly what my life needed. So comfortable! So versatile! These photos were taken after a bike ride through Brooklyn while waiting for the ferry. The wind picked up a bit, but I was ready. Sunset and autumn chill? No problem, man. This city blazer can handle it!

You can see more details over on Miss Matatabi’s blog. Thanks, friends! I’ll be seeing you all around again soon!

Blue Waltz Dress

I haven’t bought new clothes in a while because every time I see something I like in a store I find a detail or something that isn’t quite right and convince myself to make it instead. This would be fine if I actually made the thing.

I finished my wool Hollyburn skirt just in time for … spring. As the weather warmed up, wearing a full wool skirt felt silly. And hot. So I tried to think a season ahead when choosing my next sewing project. Enter the Elisalex dress in Nani iro blue waltz.Elisalex dress in Nani Iro waltzTokyo’s summers are really hot and linen dresses are ideal. A lot of Nani iro fabric comes in this linen-cotton blend or double gauze cotton, which are great for sweaty Japanese summers. Coincidence? I think not.

I love the way this dress fits. The bodice is lined and just the right amount of snug.My zippier side.

I made a muslin for this dress which helped me decide to lengthen the bodice an inch. The muslin is still wearable though I’m not in love with the fabric, so I have designated it as my clean-the-house dress. Scrubbing floors in a dress = much more fun than scrubbing floors in sweatpants.

I went with an exposed zipper using this tutorial by Gretchen Hirsch and after seeing this tip by Closet Case Files added a very thin interfacing to give the skirt a little more poof. I don’t have a full-length mirror and now that I see these photos I might shorten the hem to the knees. I purchased the Nani iro from Miss Matatabi and lined the bodice in an orange and red cotton voile from my stash.

Summer, bring it on.Blue waltz for summer. Nani iro and Elisalex

Pattern Frenzy

A while back Vogue had a sale on all their sewing patterns, so I bought three. This is definitely wishful thinking. I can’t imagine I will find the time to make all of these dresses.

vogue patternsI bought them because they were inexpensive and I thought they might be nice patterns for a beginner. I am going to cut into that pattern tissue, yes I am.

A friend recently bought a real-deal Von Furstenberg and looked great in it, which was the inspiration for 8646. I have no idea what I was thinking about 8825. Those sleeves are sort of hideous. (Though the blue version on their website is much better, and this version rocks.)

The hardest part about sewing is conjuring up an image of the final project — what fabric to use, how it will drape, how I could possibly customize it? I have no idea.

While frolicking in the US last summer I stopped by JoAnn Fabrics and found all their patterns on sale for cheap, like $1 or something ridiculous. I can’t quite remember, it all went a little blurry after the frenzy hit. I had forgotten about them until I went to put my new Vogue numbers away.

pattern frenzyI now remember my excitement about Ms. 8727. In 2006 (or 2005?) I bought a dress similar to view B at H&M for $15, and it is one of my favorite dresses. It fits me perfectly, is printed linen with a lined bodice and pockets, and I still wear it all summer. Even though styles in Japan are quite modest and that much semi-cleavage is scandalous. I don’t care, I need pockets! For years I have been dreaming of making one in every color of the rainbow but didn’t actually know how to do that. Until now!

This is quite the lineup, and none of it gets started until after this:

Nani iro + ElisalexI decided to join another sew-along, this time for the By Hand London’s Elisalex dress. I am making it in Nani iro linen. My excitement can only be adequately described in emoji: ヾ(^O^)ノ