Friday, 24 July 2015

July's Dressmaker Social Meetup and The Ask It Basket!

Thank you to everyone who came along on Monday evening and helped 
make it another successful meet up. 

The Pattern Amnesty (#patternamnesty) was fantastic. 

Here is Wendy with her donations and Barbara with her new pattern!

Lots of patterns went away with someone new and we have a great stash to donate to the emerging dressmakers at The Fashion School. 

Thanks to your feedback we will have more amnesty sessions in the future. 

We ended our evening with the group answering questions from The Ask It Basket (thanks Croianna for the idea)

I thought the Ask It Basket was fun and a great way to share our knowledge and experience with each other. We had some interesting questions and lots of fab answers and suggestions.

"What paper can I use to trace off patterns? I want something available locally and not too big a roll (no storage space). Have tried different things - all too small, too crispy or too thin"

Suggestions included...
  • Using greaseproof paper (not baking parchment as you can not stick pieces together)
  • Using Freezer Paper, available on Amazon and in small rolls at C&H Fabrics. Freezer paper can be ironed on to your fabric making it easier to cut out and then peeled off leaving no residue. Probably best to do a test on your chosen fabric first. Great for appliqué too. 
  • Buying 10m packs of dot and cross paper from Amazon
  • Buying packs of pattern paper from Fabricland. I think they also sell by the roll. 
  • New Fabric Flair also sell pattern paper.
  • Use garden polythene, the reasonable thick clear stuff used by gardeners ...?! I don't know. Trace your patterns with a marker pen. 
  • To reinforce tissue paper patterns iron on light interfacing to reinforce them.

"Does anyone have any tips on how to sew darts on slippy fabric?"

Suggestions included...
  • Tacking the dart to make it easier to machine stitch.
  • Using tissue paper or dissolvable tissue paper used by embroiders underneath the dart when stitch and then gently pull away or dissolve. If using the dissolvable test it with your fabric to make sure it will work.
  • Make sure you have the right needle and tension for the fabric.

"What is the best way to adjust a pattern for a sway back?"
  • Check that it is a sway back adjustment and not too much fabric between the shoulder and waist. If it is reduce the excess from here.
  • If it is a sway back, Barbara from The London Dressmakers Club demonstrates how to make the adjustment in this video...

"Do you have an unfinished project in your stash? Would you like to a, hand it on to someone else or b, swap it with someone else's secret unfinished garment and finish theirs instead? 

Is anyone interested in doing this? Maybe we could have a ufo amnesty? 

Our next Meetup will be on Monday 17th August, from 6pm at Bar Valentino, New Road, Brighton.
The theme is Frocktails, pop on something you made and join us for a cocktail or mocktail!

Monday, 20 July 2015

Dressmakers Social Monday 20th July 2015

MONDAY JULY 20th 2015
In tonight’s edition…           Pattern Amnesty, Sewing Stories and the Ask it Basket
What is your sewing story?
Ask It Basket
Let's get to know each other better by sharing our sewing journeys and experiences. You never know there may be someone in the room who is an expert on a technique that you find tricky, wouldn't it be great to help each other grow as dressmakers.
Do you have a sewing or dressmaking question? Someone here will be able help.  Write your question on a slip and pop it in the Basket.
Pattern Amnesty
The theme for our August Meetup is Frocktails! We are meeting at Valentino’s above El Mexico on New Road from 6pm for Cocktails or Mocktails. Happy hour is on until 7pm!
Come along in something you made! 

Tonight we are hosting our first Pattern Amnesty. If you have brought along unwanted patterns, this is how it works...
  • Leave your unwanted patterns here
  • If you see another one that you will use, take it home with you
  • All patterns left at the end of the meetup will be donated to a good cause
  • On social media? take photo’s and share with the #patternamnesty
Private visit to Worthing Museum Costume Archives
The London Dressmakers Club have invited Dressmakers Social to join them on a trip to Worthing Museum on Saturday 5th September to view the museum’s collection of costumes.

Worthing Museum is the only Costume collection that actually lets you handle the clothes, with gloved hands, so you
can feel the weight and drape of the fabric and see those inside details.  

The collection focuses chiefly on non-couture clothes and clothes made by dressmakers, both professional and home dressmakers.  You can take photographs or sketch for your own personal use only.
The curator will select items according
to what most people want to see based on the garments and period.

The cost will be approximately £5 per head. If you are interested in attending talk to Emma. Details will be added to the Meetup page this week. The numbers are limited so if you want to come along be quick!

Next Month
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17th August 2015 
from 6pm at Valentino’s Cocktail Bar on New Road.
Wear something you have made!

Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Seamstress - another word for Prostitute?!

I finally finished the posters for this month's Dressmakers Social and was told by my husband that they reminded him of the calling cards that used to be in public phone boxes. 

This reminded me of hearing that the word "seamstress" was used as an alternative to "prostitute"

The Urban Dictionary says...
A prostitue undercover. In seattle young woman were registered seamstresses but really they were just whores taking advantage of the 1897 Alaskan Gold Rush.
I like the words maker and dressmaker to describe what I do. Sewaholic also discusses this topic here and I agree with her reading the word sewer reminds me of drains and rats. 

With that in mind which words do you use to describe what you do? 

P.s. Just to be clear next week's Dressmakers Social is a gathering of people who make their own clothes 😜

Saturday, 4 July 2015

Sewing Stories & a Pattern Amnesty

July's meet up is just over two weeks away! 

This month lets get to know each other by sharing our Sewing Stories, you never know you might be sitting next to 

someone who is an expert in something you find tricky. Let's share our experiences and help each other out!

There will also be our first Pattern Amnesty! #patternamnesty Bring along your unwanted patterns, say goodbye to them, take home a new one from the pile and any left over will go to a good cause!

Looking forward to seeing you on the 20th July!