This week you’ll see some real garment basics. Gretchen is back with a pretty blouse that could easily time travel from the 1950’s until now. You’ll learn how to add a placket to a fold and transform a basic blouse into one with back buttonholes.
Peggy Sagers walks you through three different shirtwaist designs. These are right in style and wonderful for summer dressing. I was in a well known fashion forward store today and the first rack of dresses I saw were . . . you guessed it . . . shirt waist dresses! With modern fabric and a few other fashion updates these dresses don't resemble anything outdated or old fashioned. Quite the contrary, they are very contemporary, with the potential for many variations. Depending on the fabric they can have a sporty, casual look, or a style that’s suitable for career wear.
Can your closet use a few new classic garments? A basic blouse and a shirtwaist dress can provide lots of fashion mileage in your current wardrobe. This show will give you some great ideas for sewing your own! CLICK HERE to watch It's Sew Easy episode 810.
Fashion with a hint of the fifties rolls onto the set of It’s Sew Easy TV in episode 809. When I picture clothing from this era I see pink poodle skirts and sweaters that look like they were shrunk in the wash! A look back through this decade will reveal everything from circle skirts to straight dresses, topped off with pill box or big flat straw hats.
This certainly is a popular decade for retro clothes. A trip to a classic car show reveals this era as a popular one to re-live in fifties fashions. In this episode you’ll see some garments reminiscent of the 50’s but very wearable for 2015.
In two related segments Gretchen Hirsch shows how to draft a circle skirt and then fluff the hem with gathered tulle. You’ll also learn how to sew a narrow hem with a foot designed specifically for the task.
This Narrow Hem Foot takes some practice to learn to use but the results are well worth it. I like to begin by pressing the narrow hem for the first inch or two, stitch the pressed portion of hem under the foot, and then start to roll it into the foot. (See below) It also helps to use a straight stitch throat plate if you have one available as it keeps soft fabric from pushing into the throat plate opening.
In another segment Lisa Shaw presents three cardigan sweater styles. Her featured sweater is decorated with a cutwork collar and 3D flowers. Watch as she uses the Brother ScanNCut to craft a detailed design and then cuts the collar from faux suede.
Cardigan sweaters are a comfortable and practical wardrobe staple for any season of the year. This plain sweater style is just begging for some embellishment! If you can’t find your size or color choice in stores you may want to check out mail order clothing companies such as landsend.com. They have a nice variety of solid colors. Interested in making machine embroidered 3D flowers to adorn your next cardigan? CLICK HERE and take a look at a Brother embroidery design collection of 3D Lace accessories. CLICK HERE for yet another cardigan sweater idea. You’ll find a current project from Brothersews that includes a free embroidery design download to coordinate with the sweater project.
Ready for some fifties inspired fashion? CLICK HERE to watch It’s Sew Easy episode 809.
In It's Sew Easy episode 808 you'll see the flare of the late forties along with polished pant styles interpreted for the modern woman.
Late 1940’s fashion took a turn in a whole new direction and full, flared styles blossomed on the scene. In 1947 Christian Dior introduced what he called “The New Look.” The characteristic look of this style was close fitting at the top of the female figure, with a flair beginning at the hips and ending in a wide sweep at the hemline. Hats, gloves, scarves, high heels, and handbags were part of any well-dressed women’s wardrobe. This New Look was a huge hit with designers, and with real women who were eager to embrace some of the feminine fashion details put on hold during the war years. It's clear that this form of fashion was not a fad and would stick around for some time to come.
And yes, pants were no longer an uncommon item for women to wear. Factory work in the early forties changed the popularity of pants and women found they were not only practical, they were comfortable too. Pants, or trousers as they were commonly called then, could now be found as part of dress wear and not just work wear. Constructed from stylish fabric pants became more mainstream.
First up, episode 808 highlights the late 40's era with flounces and flirty ruffles presented by Londa Rohlfing.
These ruffles are actually formed from a circle shape. With this type of ruffle you have no bulk where the ruffle is joined to the garment but a full flare is possible at the hemline. I like to call these spiral style ruffles. You’ll see a super simple method for figuring out how to create this spiral ruffle in any size you need.
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In the second segment Angela discusses the popularity of different pant styles. She has some great samples along with a detailed tutorial on sewing an invisible zipper. I have often said that this is absolutely the easiest zipper you will ever sew! It’s likely that you will never want to sew a zipper any other way once you have experienced the joy of a perfect in-the-seam, invisible zip. This type of zipper is known by several names and often called a hidden or concealed zipper. When properly executed the only thing that shows is the zipper tab itself. Angela sews hers using an ordinary zipper foot. I found this most interesting as this is something I haven't done. I have always used a specific specialty foot designed for sewing concealed zips. Would you believe I am currently testing four different types of concealed zipper feet along with three different types of “invisible zippers? I’ll report my findings soon in a new tip sheet with lots of concealed zip tips. I'll let you know as soon as it is ready for you to download.
Are you ready to watch? CLICK HERE and enjoy It's Sew Easy episode 808.
It’s Sew Easy Online episode 807 features the influence of military style fashion along with a popular accessory item for this era, the quintessential clutch purse.
For part one, Angela designed a jacket with a just a hint of a military uniform, minus the olive drab. This jacket would be quite chic for a contemporary wardrobe piece in 2015. Her focus in this show is mainly on marking and stitching even buttonholes to accent the jacket front, and on making easy epaulettes for the shoulder treatment. Angela's method for turning and stitching the epaulettes is pure genius. It would work for many other narrow stitching circumstances such as belts and tabs for garments and accessories.
In part two Lisa Shaw demonstrates how to create a clutch purse with an attractive allover machine embroidery design.
Log in to the project section of the It’s Sew Easy site and download Lisa's three detailed instruction files. She includes all the measurements you'll need, plus a complete list of supplies for making your own quintessential clutch purse.
Clutch bags are fun to make and work for so many occasions! With embroidery capability you can add monograms and coordinate colors for a special outfit. This one was a gift for my sister, made to match a dress she bought for her grand daughter's wedding.
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More about forties fashions . . .
Here are some designs showing typical garment styles of this decade.
A quick search through historical photos will reveal lots of slenderizing suits, simple blouses, and chic dress styles. If I had to sum up forties fashions in one descriptive word I would use the word "classy". Take a look at some retro fashion patterns offered currently by Simplicity Pattern Company. You’ll find suit, blouse, and dress patterns that would look appropriate here and now. It’s nice to see the major pattern companies re-creating these patterns with sizing for today’s figure. CLICK HERE to see a few of the offerings in their current catalog.
The pattern below is a genuine forties pattern from my tiny collection of past patterns. It's a bit tattered and somewhat antiqued in coloration but certainly a classic blouse suitable for today's modern wardrobe.
Are you ready to take a trip back to this classic fashion era? CLICK HERE to watch It's Sew Easy episode 807. Enjoy!
In the 1930's excess and frivolity from the twenties transformed into smart fashion in the thirties. Fashion took a turn in a new direction as many women had to make every penny count during this time period. But of course women still wanted pretty details for dressing in that era. Frugal fashion became the rule of the day, with slimmer, sleeker styles, and details that could be fashioned on a budget.
This week Angela Wolf shows how to drape everything from a simple top to elegant evening wear. If you are intrigued by fashion draping you will enjoy watching her demonstrate this technique. Designer style draping is a tried and true form of pattern making, still used by many top designers in contemporary workrooms. In this segment Angela shows you how to pinch, pin, pleat, and hand gather your way to a beautiful blouse, glamorous gown, or simple top.
In part two Rebecca Kemp Brent adds scallops to add a fresh look to any garment or to home décor.
Want a lacy look without adding lace or any other trim? Sweet scallops are the answer. But how do you determine how many scallops you need for the edge you want to finish? Rebecca has a no math necessary method to answer that dilemma. You are going to love it when you see how easy it is to figure it out. In no time at all you can sew a perfectly beautiful scalloped edge for home decor, garments, and more!
If you’re ready to watch It’s Sew Easy episode 806 just CLICK HERE.
Each week at noon a new show airs online at itsseweasytv.com.
This blog features a preview of each weekly show.