Friday, August 27, 2010

Fun at OFF 5TH

Earlier this spring, I found this silk chiffon blouse by Elie Thari and loved it.

 I didn’t love the price – it was $177.90 even after 40% discount.

Then, last week, I found the same blouse on the clearance rack. It survived without pulling or tearing! The price went down to $65.98. Better yet, the store was having a sale that gives 50% further discount on clearance items. The final price was $32.99 – very close to 90% off the original price! Woo-hoo!

Actually, I almost bought the exact fabric a couple of months ago. was selling it for $29.95/yard. (And of course it sold out before I realized it.) To make the same blouse it’ll take about 1.5 yard, so the fabric itself costs about $45. Needless to say, I need interfacing, buttons, and threads. Besides, it comes with a camisole... So buying this blouse from the store saved me not only money but time to make two garments with detailed designs, such as concealed fly, pretty hem finish appropriate to the delicate crinkled chiffon, and scalloped edge finish on the camisole neckline. - I bought it!

Another reason I love to shop at outlet store is that I can "feel" the high-end garment without being bothered by the store associates. In this trip, I could get close to Oscar De La Renta and Carolina Herrera dresses which usually priced around $2000. I was so excited to find this Carolina Herrera dress which was on my "like" list couple of seasons ago.

 It was absolutely stunning in real life! The price was about $300. I examined it inside and out and believed that it was worth the money. I seriously considered the possibility of altering this dress from size 14 to size 0. LOL! Well, I didn’t buy it. I thought that it was such a shame to rip the seams which looked so perfect (and it was made in U.S.A.).

Until next post, cheers to you all!

Friday, August 20, 2010

A Tale of Two Skirts - Simplicity 2475

The Simplicity2475 skirt was so comfortable that I made another one - this time I used pretty brocade from Vera Wang Lavender Label (picture on the left). I also liked the printed top from American Eagle, so here I copied it with the remnant of Elie Tahari knit to coordinate with the cotton skirt which I made last month  (picture on the right). Here is the designer's take in her Resort 2009 collection.

 Coding detail at the neck opening
My summer is almost over. *sigh* I'm going back to school next week... but I'll try to find some time to sew for sure! Until next post, cheers to you all!  

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Burda 7549 One Shoulder Top

Background: One shoulder top in the store never worked for me due to my thin shoulder. I decided that it was about time to sew one for myself!

Fabric: Printed viscose, poly, Lycra knit from Big flower print on a black background. I was thinking of making a fitted dress when I purchased this fabric, but it was too thin for the fitted style. Note on this fabric: it stretches a lot! As I tried on the garment to check the fit, it had already grown towards the floor -more than an inch!

Pattern: Burda 7549. I made View A, which had only one piece!

Changes and Alteration: I reduced the bodice width by 4 inches, raised the armhole by 3.5 inches plus 2 inches after I saw how it stretched downward, and shortened the sleeve length to make the line smooth from the armhole. I didn’t cast elastic at waist and made it hang straight. I’m going to wear it as a tunic.

Cutting Error: It takes long to decide on pattern placement when I work with big print. This time I cut so that yellow flower would be near my face. THEN I realized that I made a stupid mistake… I placed back piece as if it was a front piece. Ahhhggg! Although I had ample fabric left, the flower design was printed in one direction so there was no way I could place front pattern like the back I already cut out.
Otherwise, it was super easy. I’m not a particularly fast sewer, but I had sewn this one up pretty quick.

Until next time, cheers to you all!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Butterick 5357 Peasant Top

My first project in this summer! I wanted to knock off this Milly top (picture left below) which I have been wearing all the time.

Fabric: Printed silk twill from Fabric Mart. Large orange flower print on cream back ground. (Note on this fabric: it ravels a lot.) Since I knew that this top would be in my everyday rotation, I prewashed and dried the fabric in the machine in delicate cycle– it came out fine.

Pattern: Butterick 5357. It looks pretty close to my Milly top. I made View C, size XS.

Change and Alteration: I added ruffles on sleeve and neck openings, left out tie, shortened sleeve length, and reduced bodice width. I thought I did not need to make muslin for this pattern but it turned out to be little too big to my liking. I was disappointed to have to cut off the nice-looking French seams to reduce the width. However, I like how it turned out. : )

Neck opening

Parting Shot - Spaghetti with Mussels

Isn't it nice when the food, which you whip up by combining whatever you have in your fridge and pantry with your imagination, turns out pretty good? This is one of those dishes.

Here’s how to cook. Start boiling water in the large pot and cook pasta. In another pan, cook frozen mussel according to the directions on the package. At the same time, you cut up broccoli, dice tomato, and mince garlic. In large pan, heat up olive oil and sauté garlic. Add tomato to the oil and garlic and cook for another minute. Add broccoli to the pasta pot 1 or 2 minutes before the pasta is done. Drain. Add pasta, broccoli, and mussel to the garlic and tomato mixture, sprinkle salt and pepper to taste, and toss it well. You will need only 10 minutes or so from start to finish.There are tons of ingredients you can substitute with this recipe – shrimp, chicken, black olive, basil, spinach, mushroom, etc. Bon appétit!