Tuesday, 23 August 2011

T.Shirt Printing.

So some of you may have noticed that I dropped off the face of the blogging world for a while. I was on my hols in Gibraltar  basking in the sun and when I have siffted through all the photos I will  be sure to post a few.
Todays post has been sat in my drafts for over a week now and I have only now found the time to post it. 
 Doing my bit for the local community, I volenteered to do a t.shirt printing work shop for the local youth club. No stranger to teaching age 16 plus I was a little nervous as the children were a lot younger.  I've got to say these children were so well mannored and produced some lovely pieces of art work for their t.shirts.  They were a pleasure to work with.  Take a peep.

Really enjoyed myself and would definatly consider working with this age group in the future.

Nick x

Thursday, 11 August 2011

My very own Blue Topaz.

Let me tell you a little story:

15 years ago I used to work in the wardrobe / costume department on a T.V series. There was an actress in particular who had wealthy parents and to be honest  probably didn't need the job  and I guess this probably showed in the way she would turn up on set late and have a complete disregard for rules. Doesn't sound good so far but I actually really liked this about her, and that most of the time she did what she wanted to do but in a cool way. I  sometimes used to wish that I could be as care free as she was and not worry so much what others thought. She was the kind of girl that dressed in sweatpants and a baggy jumper would look amazing, she was a walking clothes horse, glamorous with minimal effort. Anyway, let me get to the point of my story. The actress in question always(well nearly always) wore a blue topaz ring that was handed down from a family member and I remember this because it was probably the one thing that I ever witnessed her care about. As a wardrobe mistress it was one of my jobs to make sure all the characters wore only their characters jewellery that we provided . If we let them wear their own personal jewellery you could guarantee they would forget it the next day or a few weeks later. Not good when a programme gets aired and in one shot the ring is on and the next shot there is no ring.  This is because the scenes are never filmed in order and there must be  continuity with every aspect of the show. Anyway this particular actress not giving a s**t wore a lot of her own stuff a lot of the time and would cause me no end of continuity nightmares, running off to find her replacements that looked vaguely similar everytime she forgot to bring in continuity clothing . As I recall  in particular her ring and shoes. Since then  I have always associated that blue topaz stone ring with glamour and would be drawn to the  topaz pieces in jewllers window displays but never being able to afford one. A few weeks back I walked into a local jewellers and there sitting right in front of me was the perfect ring with a shiny topaz stone, I made the mistake of trying it on, it fit perfectly, I couldn't believe it and stood there trying to figure out ways I could afford it.  Coming up with no solutions I had to leave it in the shop.   
But would you adam an eve it (believe it)  there sitting in my bag today was that very ring. No I didn't steal it. My very very very generous mum had gone back to the jewellers, bought it for me and placed it in my bag to surprise me.  I can not believe how lucky I am and 15 years later I have my very own precious piece of glamour.  I have had the biggest smile all day. Thank you mum. I Love you, x

Nick x

Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Busy Bee

It's the school holidays and things are busier than ever. Primarily I am a taxi service to Boo and her cousin Jaz who seam to have a much better social life than myself. There have been five birthday party's recently,  swimming lessons every day in the lead up to our summer holiday next week, karate, entertainment in the form of the cinema, park and friends over to play. I am exhausted and have clocked up quite a few miles on my little cars mileage. I did however get taken to see a musical which was a welcome break from the norm. Hollywood Story 2, it was a collective of songs from Hollywood films and musicals. What with me being a film geek I really enjoyed it.
Sunday I had to travel to South Yorkshire as Boo had a karate competition. This is a photo of her in action.
She has been doing it for 2 years now and is pretty good. I'm really proud of her. She is quite a focused and confident little girl and trains 3 to 4 nights a week. Not sure I could get up in front of a crowd and do what she does.
Anyhow I did manage to fit some sewing in. My mum is decorating the spare room for her grandchildren and had seen some curtains in NEXT where they had been decorated with a rruffled heart.  Rather than her buy a brand new pair of curtains I decorated the plain ones she had and while the sewing machine was out I re-covered some small pillows to match, along with a matching heart to hang off the bed post.

Nick x

Thursday, 4 August 2011

New Dress.

Dress: made by myself
Shoes: Carvella

Firstly I must apologize for the quality of the photos. Sorry a bit blurry x
Determined to use the fabrics that have been folded away in my cupboard for months/years I once again set myself another sewing project. I had bought a few patterns a while back and decided to peel open one of them.

The one thing that is slightly annoying about working from bought patterns is the size guide. You follow the guide but every time the garment turns out too big. A dwarf at  5"2  I understand I will always have to shorten clothes but I have learnt to tweak along the way, otherwise I end up making a tent for myself. This dress was no exception. Note to self :ignore size chart in future. I am happy with the results but being a perfectionist I will probably make another with a fabric that falls better and doesn't crease as much as this one. Maybe a crepe dress with chiffon overlay in black or midnight blue. This dress had way too many steps and  was a little complex to do a tutorial so have only posted a few photos of how I made it.

At this point I had pleated the 2nd layer and tacked to the base layer of the dress.

I sewed in a centered zip to the side seam.

I faced the armholes to conceal raw edges.

This was the the neck piece and my favorite part of the dress. It has 3 layers to it and the base layer goes in a different direction.

I attached the neck piece to the dress.

Lastly I hemmed the dress and the pleated layer.

Nick x

Monday, 1 August 2011

Summer Dress for Boo. x

 For a while now I have been promising to make Boo a maxi dress for our holiday.  Well I finally got around to making it. This was so quick and simple to make and the folds on the straps just added a little something something to a simple  shape dress.  I used the left over stretch fabric from my pink trousers in a previous post.

Dress :   Made by myself
Hat:  Bought from Oxfam £1.49
Shoes:  Were a gift from the Disney Store

Here is how I made it.
You start by cutting a length of fabric a little longer than you want your dress and the width can be what you want as long as it measures wider that your hips. I find the wider the better. You then need to cut  a thin strip the same length ( this will be the band across the top to fold over and thread the elastic through) you will also need a length of ribbon, some elastic and keep any scraps to decorate the straps.

Fold the large piece of fabric over and sew together to make a tube.

Take the ends of the long band which will go at the top of the dress and sew together. Make sure you leave a gap to thread the elastic  through later on.

Fold the top band over in half to make the tube thinner in width and pin raw edges of top band to top of dress tube.

Sew raw edges of the top band to the top of the dress and it should look like this.

Thread the elastic through that gap you left in the top band to desired length. (try on at this point to get comfy fit)

Sew up the gap by hand stitching or machine stitching

Top of dress should now look like this. Don't forget to hem the bottom of your  maxi tube dress.

Pin and sew ribbons to desired length for straps.

To decorate the straps, grab a length of scrap fabric fold in half length ways and begin to pleat and pin to the ribbon.

Finish by hand stitching the folds down securely. When you wash your dress the ends will curl on the stretch fabric and add to the effect.

In other news I made a low fat cheese cake,  Yum!  and went to watch the film Captain America. Cheesy but I loved it.  Makes me want to make a super hero costume.

Nick x