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email me at charliesewingvintage@googlemail.com

Monday, 28 June 2010

Fashion Know How

I'm coming up for my last class at night school (sob). Apart from the wealth of sewing stuff I've learnt I have to say how much I've enjoyed this class and the friends I have made. I was a late comer to the group and joined them for the third session - they instantly made me feel welcome. It's been such a lovely experience and I've enjoyed every minute of it. Maria is a great tutor and has infinite amounts of patience especially with the amount of moaning I've been doing about seam allowances! Her Fashion Know How courses are a good investment for anyone looking to build their skill in many different areas.

Here we all are hard at work....

Watch this space for my completed tea dress project.

Sunday, 27 June 2010


Phew it's too hot to sew at the moment and yet I'm fast approaching my deadline for my tea dress at night school. Arggghhh so much to do! So to take my mind off impending doom I noticed that I've been tagged by Sassy Lassie. Gosh so many questions - so here goes:

1) What outfit from a movie would you love to re-create? Audrey Hepburn's little black dress in Breakfast at Tiffanys. Beautifully fitted and with that back neckline that made it so dramatic.

2) Tell us about your sewing spot/room. What is your favorite thing about it? I blogged about my sewing room a while back. It's a great room to work in; the best part being the light.

3) Where did you learn to sew? Who taught you? My grandmother was a seamstress and she taught me plenty but the place that I really learnt was at school. I had textiles teacher who was a bit of a dragon really and we were so scared of her we just got on and sewed like mad to keep from trouble. I made a draught excluder that was a very elongated cat!

4) If you could have dinner with one person from the past, who would it be? Ohhhh just one?! If I had to choose it would be Queen Elizabeth I. I think her transformation from waif-like princess to majestic ruler was extraordinary given that she lived in the C15th and had all those men to stand up to. She could have just given in and married and handed over all the responsibility to her husband, but she wanted to do things her way. Her tenacity and will power in subjugating her own desires and putting her country first was courageous. She allowed her country to flourish by creating the longest peacetime the country had known allowing scientific and artistic endeavour to replace violence and bloodshed. What a woman.

Oh and Einstein - can I have Einstein too? There's some stuff I need to ask about relativity...

5) What/Who inspires you? My husband. He's got a real passion for style and fashion. In his own work this manifests itself in interior design but he takes the time to buy me books or send me articles/images of retro looks he know will inspire me.

6) What will always make you laugh? Monty Python and seeing my other half laugh; if he laughs I laugh, it's just the way it is...

7) What is your favorite flavor of ice cream? Rum and raison. Yum.

8) What is something you would like us to know about you that you have never shared on your blog? I'm a Buddhist and I practice yoga. I live as compassionately and ethically as I know how and I'm striving to be happy each and every day.

That was exhausting. I'm going to have a quiet think about who I'm going to tag and what to ask them...

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Going to Goodwood

Motorsport, Horse Racing, Hotel, Golf, Weddings | Goodwood

A little departure from sewing - but for those of you interested in all things vintage visit the Goodwood site above. Ostensibly a motor racing venue this place plays host to some of the most memorable ad eye-catching vintage meets in the UK. Hubby and I have tickets to the Goodwood Revival in September plans are underway for my outfit, for a reminder click here. I can't tell you how much I'm looking forward to it - so much so that I'm so apprehensive about cutting into that taffeta that it's not seen the light of day since March. I must get the whole thing underway! Are you going? Maybe see you there...

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Better late than never

Here's the mandarin top that I should have completed on Saturday in time for my night out with my OH. Oh well better late then never and at least now he'll have to take me out again so that I can wear it. I'm really pleased with this as I've really been a perfectionist in finishing every little detail; for instance this morning whilst admiring my handiwork whilst eating my breakfast I noticed during my second spoonful of muesli that from the distance of across the lounge I could clearly see that the frog fasteners were not equally spaced and indeed after getting the tape measure out I had to move the middle fastener 5mm. Perfectionism is alive and well.

The fabric for this is a heavy weight satin from China. It's beautiful and I don't think the photos here do it justice. However, if you click on the link to my incanto Facebook page there are some pictures there of the garment under construction which were taken at night with the flash and they really capture the lustre of the satin.

Let me know what you think.

Monday, 14 June 2010

My sewing sanctuary

This is my studio. I thought I'd share this with you because this is an important place for me. We recently re-vamped this room so that there's more storage for my material stash, patterns, machines and so on. This room is also the brightest in the house and being entirely made of glass, the light is brilliant. It's freezing in winter though! Oh and it doubles as our dining room so I'm forever putting things away and tidying up.

I'd love to know where you all sew and if you're lucky enough to have a dedicated sewing space.

PS see the beautiful chinese print satin on the table? It'll be an FO to blog about soon!

Sunday, 13 June 2010

The story so far

Sorry it's been a while I've been busy making and creating quite a number of things but there's been no time to blog. Plus I lost the charger to my camera and so I've only just managed to photo all that I've been working on. So they'll be a bit of catching up to do on this blog in the next few days so watch this space.

Firstly I've been making progress on the shirt dress that I'm completing at night school. Here's my toile (with just one sleeve - don't ask!) and it does fit perfectly although there's much to be desired aesthetically at this stage I admit. Note in particular the notes I had to make to myself to ensure that I got all the panels in the correct place!

Now about those panels - they've been the bane of my life for the past three weeks. When I opted for this style in consultation with my tutor what she didn't say and I didn't figure out was that in drafting this pattern from my block which has no seam allowances I had to add seam allowances to each edge of five panels. Sounds easy right? Wrong! What a headache. My more sensible classmates had all opted for far more straight forward designs with just a back and front panel sewn together - oh the luxury! Anyway it did put me slightly behind everyone else but I've managed to catch up and I'll be making up the final piece this week ( minus collar as I've yet to draft it!).

I'll keep you posted!