Redo Your Wardrobe Series: Top Patterns

#1. Sleeveless Collar Blouse

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This top is a fantastic summer must have and the perfect layer for winter under a cardigan. Depending on how it’s styled, this top can be used in so many great ways year round. It’s the perfect wardrobe essential.

#2. Long Sleeve Jersey Top

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I love this top because the shoulder panels are so simple but add the perfect detail. This top is still a basic to have around but it’s definitely not boring. I will be attempting this top as well which is a gorgeous jersey top with a beautiful neckline.

#3. Peplum Top

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When I first laid eyes on this top I was so excited that I knew I had to add it to my wardrobe. The peplum is the perfect simple detail and the collar is a great add-on for a fancier occasion.

#4. Button Up Blouse

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I think that this top is the perfect variation of the plain old button up blouse. Don’t you think so? It’s so cute! It can be worn to work or can be styled for a Christmas party! Another one I plan on trying is this hidden button blouse. It looks so expensive it would add a richness to your wardrobe that it never had before. For any lovely plus size ladies, this gorgeous two-tone tunic is pretty fantastic!

#5. Bustier Style Top

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This one might be a little difficult to achieve for me as I have a lot to alter in the, er, chest area. I’m sure all you busty ladies feel me. However, I am determined to figure it out because I know that there is a way to alter such patterns to make them work for women like us! For those of you who are normal in the bust, enjoy! This pattern will be much easier for you. Along with this style, I will be making this bustier style top which will most likely be a lot easier and is just as pretty in my opinion.

#6. DrawString Blouse

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For those of you who are truly into DIY style I suggest you buy the Burdastyle Handbook. It’s amazing. This project is from that book and I have yet to try my hand at it. Therefore, I will be attempting it as well as my own variation. Another blouse I might try (this one is going in to the “if there’s time” pile) is this lovely tie up blouse.

So those are my DIY wardrobe tops to do! If you would like to see any other tops on this list, please let me know! If you’d like, please tell me what kind of tops you will be sewing in the new year! I’d love to hear about all of your sewing endeavours!

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Tumblr Copy-Cat: New Years/ Christmas Eve Dress

Almost exactly a year ago I found this amazing dress on tumblr that I just knew I had to have for New Years. I couldn’t explain it. There was some weird desire that a dress like that just HAD to be mine. As I was a student in my first year of fashion school, money was a serious object. It didn’t help that I couldn’t find the dress anywhere. There were many lovely alternatives (just google “Sequin Dress” and you’ll see what I mean) but none of them were the “one”. Not for the prices they were asking anyways. So I took it upon myself to make it on my own. If you know much about fabric you’ll find that sequin fabric is not particularly cheap so if you ever want to endeavour in a project like this, do yourself a favour and do it early enough to start raiding the discount bins at your local fabric stores. I was lucky enough to find exactly what I needed at exactly the right price (less than $10/M is usually my goal).

As you are probably wondering what this heavenly dress looks like, I will now reveal it:

Sequin Dress

 

Yup! Extremely simple! But just the right amount of sparkle for a special night without going way over the top. SO! This is what I did.

1. Find the right pattern.

This could take some time. You might be able to do some searching at your fabric store for a good dupe of the dress you want however searching online is usually a great deal easier. I found what I needed on Burdastyle.com (the best online sewing resource in the world in my opinion). This is the pattern I used for the top, and this is the pattern I used for the skirt. The top pattern was free and the skirt pattern was $3.00. Not bad if I do say so myself!

So the fabric I bought had a little bit of stretch so I opted for getting rid of the zipper on the back and just cut that edge on the fold of my fabric. When I sewed the top and skirt together, I did a basting stitch down both seam allowances before I sewed them together and I gathered each until they matched and were the width of my waist measurement. Then I sewed them together and voila! A beautiful dress that cost me less than $25 and two hours to make!

New Years

 

Apologies for the somewhat lacking in quality picture, as it was the only one I took of the dress that day.

So there you have it! My perfectly shameless dupe of a dress I found on Tumblr, the world’s worst website for making you want things you don’t have!

This year it’s a dress I found on modcloth.com that I may or may not share with you when I find the right fabric! Until then, please share with me any dupes you’ve made of outfits you found but just could not afford. I’d love to see them!

Redo Your Wardrobe Series: Skirt Patterns

As an add-on to my list of basic wardrobe essentials, this substantial blogpost’s purpose is to share with you some patterns that I will be working with in the near future to work towards a wardrobe overhaul.

#1. The Pencil Skirt

The one I will be attempting is a simple skirt with a straight waist band because I love that look. I will also like to sew this one because I am sure that both will add dimension to my wardrobe. When I have time, I might even try my hand at this princess seam ditty! If you are reading this and you need the plus size version, well, here it is!

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#2. The Circle Skirt

This one is awesome because it’s free to draft the pattern! It’s always awesome when you can custom make clothing to your own specific measurements. Circle skirts are definitely one of the most easy pieces to draft, and look cute to boot! I’m going to also attempt to alter the drafting to make the infamous asymmetrical design that is so in right now.

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#3. The Maxi Skirt

Another free pattern! Maxi skirts are very easy to construct and the fabric is usually very forgiving. I’ll be posting a simple DIY tutorial when I begin making this amazing basic wardrobe staple so that it’s easy for you! I also came across this plus sized elasticized pattern which could easily be altered for what ever size you are.

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So there you have it! Three basic staples that can be mixed and matched any which way. Any colour you desire. Skirts are the easiest thing to make so whether you’ve been sewing all your life or you just started as a cheaper alternative to your shopping addiction, I’m here to help you out! These skirts are flattering on all figure types and can be changed by accessorizing for different occasions. Different fabrics can be used to alter the design as well as some basic drafting techniques that I’ll share once we cross that bridge.

As always, thanks for reading and I hope you look forward to the next blog post on top patterns coming soon!

Re-Do Your Wardrobe Step One: Make a List

Over the years my closet has been thrashed and re-hashed so many times. I could not tell you how many times I’ve walked up to my closet and though “wow, I honestly do not want to wear any of the crap in here”! Whether that’s because I genuinely change body size too often (gaining or losing weight) or just from the ideals of our sheer consumerist culture, it’s time to have a wardrobe that sticks. Over the last few months I’ve made a list of exactly it is that I need. I thought about my day-to-day life and exactly what it is that would make choosing my outfits in the mornings easier and more enjoyable.

First, I had to start thinking more long-term. I need basics that are going to last from season to season and that will match with any new trendy top or bottom that gets added. Neutral colours are a must. For me this means: black, black aaaand more black! Black is slimming, black is always in style and black is awesome!

Next, I thought about the things that are currently in style but won’t go out in a month. For example: peplum tops, swing dresses and floral printed anything.

So from there I made a simple list of what I want and need based simply on the things I think I will get the most use out of and what I’d love to have in my wardrobe but can’t afford to buy on a seasonal basis.

Here is the list of pieces I’d like to have in my wardrobe (subject to change):

-Pencil Skirt

-Circle Skirt

-Sleeveless Collar Blouse

-Tulip Shorts

-Shift Dress

-Swing Dress

-Cardigan

-Simple Jersey Dress

-Evening Dress

-30’s Style Bathing Suit

-Long Sleeve Jersey Top

-Peplum Top

-Button Up Blouse

-Bustier Style Top

-High Waist Trousers

-Maxi Skirt

So this is the beginning of my list. It’s possible I might decide later I don’t need something or that I need something else but I will do edits in the event of a major mind change. Anyways, that is the beginning of my research. Tomorrow I will post pictures of my findings! Until then, I love you all and I will leave you with a photo of my evening wear inspiration by Elie Saab!

 

Collections: Summer 2012, An Evolution

I’ve been terrible because I didn’t stick to my word and update often like I said I would. I do have a good reason, though. On June 9th, my best friends and I debuted our summer 2012 collections! The collections have been covered on a couple of blogs already like this oneĀ and this one. Also there are two videos that document the entire show (plus one that has 3 outfits of the night featuring me, my photographer and my amazing friend Becca.)

The official Lavish Nightclub Video:

If that’s not enough, here’s two pictures of the designers with their creations. The first being Sebastian’s amazing collection (did I mention he also designed the performer, Cassandra Moore’s, outfit? Brilliant or what?):

Great summer brights! Photo by Whitney Heard

The second collection being the one I mentioned in my last post! Kali and I worked together on the colour scheme and design and each did our own three pieces. The girls on the right would be my design and the ones of the left would be hers!

Pastels and “kitchy” prints! šŸ˜‰ Photo by Sylvia Ziętek

With each look staggered rather than separated I think it looks a lot more congruent.

Photo by Sylvia Ziętek

So instead of simply covering the event, I thought I’d spend some time on the “making of” side of things since that is exactly what I created this blog for! To start off, I’ll share a little bit of what went into the design for this collection. Kali and I decided that we wanted a collection that was fun and flirty with all the lovely colours that brought to mind spring/summer 2012. We chose pink and blue because, well, that’s our favourite! The colour scheme was a little something like this:

After we chose our colours the next thing to do was to find inspiration which we found in various photos. Here’s a look at our inspiration board!

After inspiration comes sketching, sketching and more sketching! This was my final sketch after all was said and done:

From here came colour options, here’s Kali’s final decision:

From this comes hours of pattern-making and problem solving on how to make the patterns so that the clothing fits just right. Sometimes, this can be a very tedious task. Once this has been accomplished to a point where the designer is confident enough to test the fit, the first fitting is cut from the pattern pieces on to muslin! Here’s a photo of what my first fitting looked like:

Once that is done for all the pieces and the fit has been evaluated and the proper changes have been made to the pattern pieces, it’s on to fashion fabric and beyond!

To start off I would like to first show the pieces that Kali made as they are beyond amazing. She is incredibly talented! And while I’m gushing, I’ll just say that you should seriously check out her blog.

Photo by Jason Oncz. Modelled byĀ Anna Kroczek.

Photo by Jason Oncz. Modelled by SherriĀ Liska.

Photo by Sylvia Ziętek. Modelled byĀ Marissa Elyse.

Each look moving towards the blue! For information on how you can purchase any of these looks post a comment on her blog!

For my half of the collection, I thought I’d share a little more detail in the process. You might notice there were a couple of changes made from the sketch I made. The biggest changes happened to the first outfit. It was made into a dress instead of two pieces because I felt it would work better for the design. It also fit well into the collection to have three dresses instead of two. For fabric I ended up choosing almost all 100% cotton except for the skirt on the blue outfit which was wool crepe (I think!).

All of this is from Fabricland.

From picking out fabric comes the best part (in my opinion!)- watching it all come together as you sew!

The final looks on the dress form:

From here comes the scariest and the most rewarding part…seeing it on the runway!

Photo by Jason Oncz. Modelled by Caitlin Smith

Photo by Sylvia Ziętek. Modelled by Aleksandra Biesek.

Photo by Sylvia Ziętek. Modelled by Faith Chakraburtty.

Hair and Make-Up by:

Sherri Liska

Mel Archambault

Brit Anderson

Sebastian Taborda Guarin

If you’re interested in any of the photos taken stop by:

Sydney McArthur Photography

Whitney Heard

Jason Oncz Photography

SylviaĀ Ziętek

To find out where to get your hands on any of my custom made designs, like the Kaydance Kloth Facebook Page to get updates on when my designs will be available to purchase on Etsy (you can also check out more pictures from the show!)! ā¤

Thanks for watching, reading and loving!