Vintage Red

Dedicated to Vintage Pattern Reproduction.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Dude...Where's My Blogging?

Posted by Carisa |

I knooooow. I suck! But I've been working on a super duper life altering project and I'm just so excited to tell you that in June, 2011, I will be opening a sewing studio!! I knooooow, I'm excited too! The Studio will be based in Seattle, WA, and will not only be an hourly rate studio with sewing machines, sergers, dressforms, etc, but it will also have a fabric store and a full range of classes! Did I mention that I'm excited? CAN YOU FEEL IT! Go to my webiste and check out all the bitchin' stuff we are going to have! I promise to get back to my Vintage Red very soon, but probably not till July once the store is fully open.


Thursday, July 15, 2010

Back in the Saddle Again

Posted by Carisa |

On a scale of 1-10, how wrong is it name a blog post solely based on a song that is going through your head? Thanks a million Aerosmith, but if you could actually play more than just that one line through my head I think I would be going a bit less mad right now. 

So I am working on a very interesting project for my friend Heather. Heather and I met in Chicago about 10yrs ago when we serving time in retail hell. Before I left for the UK I made her a bitchin' white coat that, well, can only be best described as a lab coat really. As seen in this stellar shot taken in my photography class in London:

So I promised her after I left the UK that I would make her a 1940s replica of a US Military Jacket. I believe she took her inspiration from this scene in For the Boys:

Well, I kinda never got around to it, till last year (5yrs and counting) and then procrastinated. And of course, she has now changed her mind (good thing I was lazy right!) She is now totally into Steampunk, and for those of you that had to look this up like I did,  
"the term denotes works set in an era or world where steam power is still widely used — usually the 19th century, and often Victorian era Britain — but with prominent elements of either science fiction or fantasy, such as fictional technological inventions like those found in the works of H. G. Wells and Jules Verne, or real technological developments like the computer occurring at an earlier date."
  -- Wikipedia

Kinda like this

So now we are on to bigger and better and I have started making this new jacket. As I am SURE I have mentioned (screamed) on previous occasions (all the time) I am by no means a designer, nor do I really like designing. Unfortunately heather totally conned me into it and this is what we came up with.

It will be a dark green, heavy twill, with brown leather belts (anything black on the drawing) There will be a stamp print using vintage pictures on the yolk and one sleeve. All "buttons" are actually brass cogs and wheels that were found online. I'm hoping the fabric freys quite a bit so that I can sew some of the seams on the outside to give it a more weathered look, as well as a copper lining on the inside. I'm not sure you can really see the vision from my poor drawing, but here it is at any rate!

 So I have made a mock-up of the "general idea" and am sewing it together tonight! More picture to follow tomorrow!  Wish me luck!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Dear Vogue

Posted by Carisa |

Dear Vogue,
I know that everyone is super excited about your Fall line. I personally believe, that after looking at your new patterns, you have single-handily crushed my dreams for my favorite wardrobe season. And I'm really not cool with that. Let's see a few examples of your poor taste shall we?

Exhibit A:
It is NOT Hammer Time. So put DOWN the parachute material and let's think about this rationally. (Please note this very useful equation when making important Fall Pattern decisions.)

Exhibit B:
If I wanted to look preggers, I would get preggers. Why you feel the need to strategically place gathers in a dress so that it will give the appearance of  pregnancy, is beyond me. Hasn't my boyfriend been through enough just by dating me? Does he need to be scared to death? 

Exhibit C:
Poison and Scorpion called, they want their pants back, they've been looking for them everywhere.

Exhibit D:
I don't even want to talk about what's wrong with this. But I'm pretty sure even Sarah Jessica Parker wouldn't wear this (I'm so going to regret saying that, she is totally going to wear it to an event, sigh, oh Sarah...)

Now Vogue, I don't think I need to continue on about my feelings towards your new line. I mean, everyone has an off design or two, you can't please everyone, they can't all be winners...blah blah. I also understand, from my internet browsing, that I am in the minority on most of these problems I have, and I'm OK with that. All I ask is that you please stop encouraging the young and annoying fashionistas of the world who are bringin' it back old school 80s/90s style.

I know I know, I was not above reproach several decades ago when I was rockin' the big hair, side pony, baggy Bon Jovi t-shirt, and stirrup pants. But I would like to point out that in the mid-90s (snort) I packed that up and sent it where all bad fashion goes to die, in exchange for leggings and an oversize plaid button down shirt, just like everyone else did. I never dreamed, even for one moment, that it would ever be regurgitated back at me some 30 years later to relive the horror.  I left that 80s garb in the time capsule of yearbooks and unburned pictures where it belongs. (except the Bon Jovi shirt, come on it was a tour shirt! It will totally be worth something someday, possibly)

Vogue, we left the 80s and early 90s right where we left them for a reason, a really good reason might I add, and you too will look back on these designs and say what I'm saying to you right now, W. T. F.

Your Biggest Fan,

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

When Boyfriends Make Bad/Good Decisions For You

Posted by Carisa |

Sunday Morning Breakfast: Senior Moose
Me and Boyfriend:

Me: Ok, tell me I don't need buy a new sewing machine
BF: You totally should
Me: (spitting out drink) What!
BF: Why not, it's your only hobby really (sad) and the one you have is really old
Me: But I really shouldn't spend the money, that is what you are supposed to say to me
BF: Meh, and if you got a new one, you could do all kinds of new things and be faster
Me: Ok you are NO help, I asked you because you were supposed to say no
BF: Sorry, I think it's a good idea, how much will you spend
Me: I don't want to go above $400-$600, and $600 would kill me to spend. It's so much.
BF: Wow, I thought you were going to say at least $1200
Me: God no!
BF: I say do it, I mean if I can have a $14,000 motorcycle you can have a $600 sewing machine, at least yours makes stuff
Me: Agreed, get a new hobby
BF: No, are you done eating that?

OK, correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought boyfriend's were supposed to be your "better half" (snort) and give you "good advice" (snort snort) and stop you from spending tons of money (bahaha, snort, bahahah, snort) Wait, if I can't get through that sentence without laughing out loud, well, I should have know better than to ask him right? Sigh.

So I guess I'm on the market for new sewing machine! Anyone have any ideas?

Saturday, July 03, 2010

Trenchy the Naughty Coat

Posted by Carisa |

As promised, I have finished my trench coat! I actually finished ages ago, but because of my, ahem, addiction to certain crime shows that will not be named (Bones), I haven't posted in a while (millennium). I used the McCall pattern 5525 and did regrade it to my size with the ever so accurate, add-an-inch-everywhere-and-fit-it-to-me-later, method. I knoooow I was supposed to do it the "right" way, but once I saw how many pieces there were I decided against it, because I have better things to do (lazy).  So here's the low down...

THIS, is the finished product, note that I am just taking pictures now and have worn it numerous times, thus there is a bit of a I-haven't-seen-an-iron-before feel to it, or wrinktastic as I call it...ignore this please. Yes, that IS the dress I was working on regrading on the form...I plead the 5th on the grounds that it might incriminate me as an addict with a TV watching problem.

Things I learned:
1. McCalls does NOT always know best. -- Why you ask? They don't really specify to do any interfacing on the belt, thus what results is a puny and poor excuse for a belt. So instead of a belt, I have a trendy tie in the back...pathetic. You would think after years of sewing I would think "Oh McCalls you think you're so smart but you aren't" no, instead I went "Sweet!" and then did a little cabbage patch dance of delight to not having to do more pre-sewing work.

 2. I am far more OCD than originally thought. -- WHO knew that a trench coat had so many parts and detail sewing? I spent more time Topstitching than I did sewing or picking out the lining (please see gross error in judgment or #3)

3. No matter how bitchin' you think it's going to look, there is a REASON they don't call all fabric lining. -- Now, I'm not saying I don't totally heart my lining, because I think it's awesome. The problem is I made it out of the same fabric as the shell of the jacket and there is not only added bulk but a serious lack of movement, Normally I would never stray from using fabric called lining, but it was so pretty...

Dear Lining Gods,
I got you message and I think you kinda of suck for your poor attitude and lack of clarity on informing me that I was making a mistake on fabric choice. But overall I stand by my decision purely on how fantastic it looks, and I hate being wrong.

Now tell me it doesn't look kinda bad ass?

The yolk:

The pockets:

The Fully Monty (yes that is my boyfriend's hand, he would make SUCH a good Vanna, no?)

So there you have it folks! I will never make another trench again, A: Because I have one now, and B: Because it took way to long to make. (Please note that B will be a distant and strangely fond memory by the time A is no longer true. Sigh)

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Really? I mean Really?

Posted by Carisa |

Does the last post read Feb 25th? Impossible! OK maybe it is totally possible. I would love to say it was because I've been uber important and busy and that's is why, but in reality, I just haven't done a lot of sewing. I did finish my jacket and will post shortly on my "maybe that was the wrong lining for this project" jacket. I have found that there really is a reason some fabric is actually called lining, weird. But this you will learn more of later so stop bugging me already...geesh...oh wait, that's the jacket talking, shut up jacket.

Other than that I got a promotion (woot woot) it's basically the same job (bummer) but with more pay (super). So that has been taking up time, and then I started watching the series Bones, and I'll be honest, that is really what has prevented my sewing. Shameful, I know. But. I. Can't. Stop. Watching. OK OK OK, it' actually the ONLY reason I haven't been sewing, who told you! Don't think for a second though that my boyfriend has not mocked me episode by episode. But I am immune to his snotty comments and will continue my viewing! (I'm in the middle of Season 4, um WTF with the Season 3 ending!)

So, that's me, my life, and where I've been. I'm not exciting I know, but more sewing will occur! Besides, it's really my only hobby. I don't think I can obsessively watching crime shows is my hobby..or can I...

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

OH the Irony of it all

Posted by Carisa |

Oh Look at me! Blogging twice in one day! Score! I just have to mention this story and didn't want it to get lost in my other post, because I find it to be quite ironic and funny, in a laugh-instead-of-cry sorta way.

I decided I needed a new project on Saturday, so I rummaged through my old patterns and found a lovely mid-thigh trench coat pattern I just had to have (there is a strong possibility I may have a slight obsession of jackets, just as a warning). So I went a few blocks over to Joann Fabrics (because I live in Seattle and there is really no choice for inexpensive fabric stores, sooo sad...I miss you Vogue Fabrics in Chicago and Shepherds Bush Market in London!) Anyways, I got this faaabuluse deal on some cotton sateen!

These were my choices, at first I wanted to go with a really bright color like the blue, but after looking at it in the mirror, although it would have looked killer with my red hair, my sizable everythingelse, would not have fared so well.

Behold! My future masterpiece! dark Red with a black and white lining.

So why do I find this ironic? Well I got home and realized, I have, ahem, grown a bit, ahem, and the pattern no longer fits. So guess what? OH THE IRONY!!! I have to resize it. Oh yes, I laughed, so you might as well laugh too. Since I won't be distributing the resize, I got out my trusty paper and sized away, it was actually really good practice and I learned a lot. It's a modern pattern so it's already multi-sizes (just not my size, booo) so it was interesting to see how they gave a little more hear and there and a little less in places for ease. Très Intéressant...

 I'll post more as I get more of it done!