Bombshell dress – cup alteration

Bombshell dress muslin - backside

Bombshell dress muslin - backside

This is the backside of my muslin. I have scoliosis and my curved spine can be seen clearly here. This might be the first time I ever photographed my backside deliberately.

The last time I saw pictures of my backside is when I was 15 years old. They were laid on the table in front of me and I got a few disheartening comments (parents can be so inconsiderate!) about it. I got traumatized and avoided fitted clothing since then. Until now.

I must say that sewing and blogging about sewing have helped me to see human bodies differently. I make muslins and put them on, look into the mirror and try to see what needs to be fixed. This process has slowly taught me to know my own body better. Usually I just made some baby doll or loose dresses quickly and threw them over me, feeling sure that what needs to be hidden is hidden.

After looking at so many creations all over the net, I suddenly can see that there are a lot of variations in human bodies. Sometimes I see that ‘oh her left shoulder is a bit higher than the right one’ or ‘her waist is almost the same width as her hip’. Not to nitpick their bodies, just for my personal observation in order to learn good fitting.

Then I see that none of these flaws affect the clothes. Well, of course they affect how the clothes hang on their bodies, but a pretty dress worn by a pretty lady who posed proudly for her own creation is still a pretty dress nonetheless.

My spine is curved. But they look okay. Sometimes they hurt, and that’s what I need to be working on instead of spending energy thinking about hiding them. I am happy to know that what started as a curiosity whether I was able make the whole wardrobe for myself has turned into a journey of self-discovery.

Bombshell dress muslin - second fitting

Bombshell dress muslin - second fitting

Uh, anyway… as I was saying in the title, I did the alteration for the bust cup as I’ve planned in the previous post, and it seems to be working out!

The right cup in the picture is altered while the left cup is unaltered. I pinched the excess fabric on the left cup to show how much that I have eliminated.

Now I need to think about the skirt part. I don’t really like the sarong skirt on the original pattern but still haven’t decided what to make instead. Maybe a simple gathered skirt with sideseam pockets!


Starting the bombshell dress

Apparently the repair was faster than expected, the repair shop sent my sewing machine back yesterday! The big box arrived in the morning and I danced happily all day. No more machineless week! I used it right away to finish my husband’s jeans. They only need to be hemmed now and I’m waiting for my husband to come home so I can measure the length of the legs.

Meanwhile, I started to work on my bombshell dress. The smallest size of the pattern is 36, which is still too big for me. So I resized it to 96% of the original size and cut size 36. This is one of the advantages of using PDF pattern! The fabric is some purple linen with white floral pattern as I didn’t have any plain fabric.

Bombshell dress - muslin

Bombshell dress – muslin

Bombshell dress - muslin

Bombshell dress - muslin

I think the muslin fits quite well except for the top of the bustline. You can see that I have pinned them with red pins on each side.

Working in my computer, I slash open the upper cup pattern and overlap the top. Naturally this will add more curve to the bottom line of this piece so I should check again if it will affect the overall cup shape.

Upper cup alteration

  1.  Pattern piece.
  2. Slashing the pattern.
  3. Overlapping both sides about 1.4 cm and draw the new bustline.
  4. Altered pattern.
And that is enough fun for today! Do any of you also take this online sewing course?

Machineless week and Bombshell dress online course

We took my sewing machine to the repair shop last Saturday. It was such a hot day (35°C !) and my husband carried the heavy machine through several train trips before we reached the Janome dealer in Asagaya.

The man opened the sewing plate, took a look inside and shook his head heavily, which of course made me even more nervous. Anyway he said that it might take up to a week to repair the sewing machine and depending on the problem, the repair cost would be up to USD 150. He would inspect the sewing machine and let us know this week. So I guess it’s a serious thing?!

I’m sitting at home now, machineless for hopefully not more than a week. I guess I will do something else, like drafting a new pattern or cutting up fabrics. And why do all of my options have to be related to sewing? I guess I should find a new hobby.

Sew Retro Bombshell Dresses!

Sew Retro Bombshell Dresses!

Still not finding a new hobby, I took an online sewing course at Craftsy, Sew Retro: The Perfect Fit Bombshell Dress. The cost is USD 29.99 from the original USD 59, and I even got more discount because Craftsy is having a Summer treat deal for a week. So I only paid USD 25.

The instructor is one of my favorite blogger, Gretchen Hirsch of Gertie’s New Blog for Better Sewing. The course is for making a bustier dress with sarong skirt, using highly tailored techniques like underlining, boning, bust padding, waist stay and many more. Gertie also shows how to use use different style of skirts and straps, adding more versatility to the pattern. The pattern used is this Bustier dress with draped detail from Burdastyle (PDF download).

I’m not really sure if I have enough bomb to fill that shell, but I’m very interested in learning the construction and sewing techniques. My husband said that I can make the dress just to apply the techniques that I’ve learned. I think I will do that!

There are 15 videos in this course, each is about 15-30 minutes long and I was planning to spend my machineless week watching them all. I began to watch the introduction video yesterday and couldn’t stop! These videos are very fun to watch and Gertie is such a talented instructor. Her style is also a delight to the eyes, I love all the outfit she’s wearing in the videos.  If you’re interested in vintage and couture sewing technique, I really recommend this course!

I spent all day watching the videos, ignoring my poor husband and son. My husband loves to cook on weekends, so he made anchovy spaghetti for lunch and nikujaga for dinner (they were both so delicious!). Sidra read books and played Nintendo, then both of them played card games, checking Sidra’s homework, did lots of things etc, while their irresponsible wife and mama sat in front of the computer with headphones on her head all day long. Video #15 was finished at midnight. It is now Monday morning, day one of my machineless week …. *hang my head in shame*

Let’s go back to: And why do all of my options have to be related to sewing? I guess I should find a new hobby.