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Topics - Sewsuzie

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House Beautiful / Keepsake cushion
« on: May 19, 2017, 19:25:11 PM »
Not the sort of thing I normally do, but I was asked to make this cushion back in March by one of my customers.
It was a Dolce & Gabanna shirt he'd had for over 20 years when he first met his partner, and it held some precious memories for them. They were both a bit sad that it had started to wear out and wasn't fit to go out in anymore. So, he decided to secretly have the shirt made into a cushion, as a birthday gift for his partner and a keepsake for them both.
What a fib he told...... said it had been ripped to shreds in the washer and he'd had to throw it away!
Anyway, the shirt was a bit on the thin side, so I backed it all with a soft cotton fabric, before stitching down the button stand, so that it didn't gape like a man with a bay window belly, ( we've all seen them, haven't we? ;)). I rescued the ends of the collar that weren't frayed, to make a faux neckline and made a mock Oxford pillowcase edging using the offcuts, as the shirt wasn't big enough to do it all in one, then fitted an invisible zip to the bottom edge.
As a finishing touch, I stitched the inside label onto the back along with a spare button.
When he came to pick it up, he was overwhelmed and gave me such a big, heartfelt hug, he almost had me welling up. His partners birthday was yesterday and he rang me today to say how much he'd loved it, and it was the best birthday present ever!!
Made my day  :) :)

Suzie  :vintage:

The Cafe / Like chalk on a blackboard
« on: April 28, 2017, 12:40:45 PM »
Euggghhhhyeuk, shudder, shudder..... Just finished altering 2 of these dresses from Next.
I've never felt such a horrible fabric in my life  :devil:. It's stretch jersey suedette and although the right side feels a bit iffy, the inside is FAR WORSE than squeaking chalk on a blackboard. My hands are still cringing at the thought of it. It made them feel like the roughest sandpaper you can get, and I don't think hand cream would have helped. I'd have just stuck to it!
Yeuk, yeuk, yeuk!!!!! How would anyone even want to wear that!
Glad it's not me. Off to lather on a gallon of hand cream now I've finished them  ;)

Suzie  :vintage:

Fun with Fabric / Linton tweed
« on: April 27, 2017, 14:49:27 PM »
Love their fabrics and have just finished making a fringed jacket for a customer. Super pleased with how it's turned out, as was she, and she's allowed me to show a pic of it.
I've put the pic in the gallery so it's not on view to the rest of the world, as she's wearing it to a wedding next month, and another one in December.
It's based on Burda 6703 with added lining and adjustment to front darts. The single waist dart was too wide and threw the grain line of the fabric off too much, so I made a side bust dart and transferred some of it there.
I interfaced all the pieces with a soft iron-on weft insertion interfacing to keep its shape and cut down on fraying (and boy, does it fray!).
After making sample fringe both ways of the fabric, I decided to go with the warp threads and made miles of it, to go round all the edges. Laborious but enjoyable.
It fastens with large press studs under the buttons, covered in a fine silk satin to blend into the tweed - no way was I going to attempt buttonholes on it!
Just finished cutting out a simple shift dress for her to wear with it, so better get cracked on with that.

Suzie  :vintage:

Sewing Professionally / I love my job!
« on: April 09, 2017, 08:42:25 AM »
Thanks for the new addition to the forum, Fran!
I'll kick off the chat with a quick introduction into what keeps me busy each day.
I set up a small alterations business 13 years ago, working from home and absolutely love it. I'd worked with my mum for the previous 20+ years sewing made to measure occasion and bridal wear! but didn't fancy carrying it on when she retired.
I know most people hate doing alterations, but I love unpicking and turning a baggy sack into something that fits. I do anything from sewing on a button, to resizing and reshaping expensive (and cheap) bridal wear. Everything is treated with the same careful attention to detail.
In the early days, I did a lot of freelance alterations for a local bridal shop too, but that was hectic and involved several trips out to the shop every week, so when they closed down, I wasn't really sorry. I had already built up plenty of local customers, and word of mouth has definitely paid off. I only run 1 tiny ad in the local church magazine and have a Facebook page to display some of my work. These 2 avenues of advertising bring in enough work to keep me busy all the time, and I love the variety of things I have to do.
Over the last few years I've had a lot more bridal and bridesmaid alteration work, which usually tends to be either from Internet purchases that ain't quite what they were expecting, or from the bridal outlets that seem to be springing up everywhere. Everyone has a budget, and even with the cost of having them altered, they generally represent value for money. There is the occasional 'OMG, what were you thinking?' moment, but hopefully it doesn't show on my face. I've always managed to turn it into something they're happy with.
So, today is a day off, but tomorrow I'll be finishing off a wedding dress alteration, shortening a pair of trousers, resizing a Condici wedding outfit and taking in a couple of shirts..... oh, and finishing off a bespoke jacket that I'm making someone in gorgeous Linton Tweed.
Enough about me, what does anyone else do?

Suzie  :vintage:

Vintage Machines / Show and tell time - lets see some oldies!
« on: April 01, 2017, 11:33:05 AM »
Thought I'd swell up the vintage corner with a few pics of my old ladies (and a few gents - some are definitely male).
First up is the one that started my love of vintage, a 1922 Singer 128k. She's also my desktop background and cover photo on FB.

This is the only one with any family connection, given to me by my MIL when she moved house. it had belonged to her MIL before that, and I'm guessing that she was the original owner in 1922.
It still sews beautifully and I use it to shorten jeans occasionally. It can sew through all the thick seams without making a birds nest underneath or skipping stitches.
At the moment it is sitting on the front room windowsill, with a few friends, waiting to spring into action at a moments notice (well, after I've flicked the dust off).
So... she was the start of the slippery slope into VSM addiction. Many more followed her, too many to show all at once,  so I'll leave it at that for now, before you all start to nod off.
Anyone else got any pics they'd like to show and tell?
:vintage: :vintage: :vintage: :vintage:
Suzie  :vintage:

Hi, I'm new... / So... here you all are
« on: March 22, 2017, 08:57:34 AM »
Hi all, glad to have found this lovely new forum, with lots of familiar names, and a few changes of name. I've kept my original name as I'm not that inventive.
I wasn't very active on TSF over the last year or so, but was shocked to see it disappear. Hoping to get back into it here, and maybe make time to sew something for myself very soon.
Looking forward to catching up with all the sewing news and chat.

Suzie  :vintage:

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