Wednesday, 28 September 2016

The Mysterious Consumer Trends

Four days ago the Financial Times published an article that has been circulating on the net. The authors of the article are perplexed as to why clothing sales has dropped off in previously unseen numbers. Oh the horror! 


I'm kidding, I'm actually rolling on the floor laughing. 

Obviously, the authors are unfamiliar with the current fashion trend "athleisure." Actually, athleisure is more than a trend as evident by the number of people who dress exactly the same in their gym-to-the-office look without actually stepping into a gym. Seriously, if it has become culturally acceptable to a large segment of the population to wear leggings and yoga pants everywhere, why is a drop in clothing profits such a "mystery" to the the folks at the Financial Times? With one less change of clothes needed... do we really need to do the math?  


The article tries to suggest that the under twenty-five demographic are becoming uninterested in fashion and shopping for clothing but I think there is more to the story that hasn't been explored. Millennials have a reputation for being socially-conscious, they are not the me-me-me generation that they are often labelled as. This is a generation that has grown up with fast-fashion like no other demographic and they are well-educated in social justice issues. Millennials are all about participating and doing for themselves and they are the reason that many young people are taking up sewing in numbers unseen for decades. It is why the bookstores are stocked with beginner level sewing books. Millennials are part of the generation engaged in the Fashion Revolution movement that emerged out of the tragedy at Rama Plaza and they ask questions. This is a generation of eco-tourists who grew up with books like Overdressed: The Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion. This is not a generation to be easily conned by a sale sign.  

A decline is ready-to-wear clothing sales is only a mystery if we fail to recognize these cultural and social trends.  

Happy Sewing!    

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Winter / Holiday Vogues

Vogue patterns released their Winter / Holiday line last night. The most exciting part is that there are a whole new line up of new designers to discover. Although, I'm still missing Donna Karan designs, Rebecca Vallance seems to have some Karan-esque features to her designs.  
Vogue 1525 has pleated pants that remind me of the pleated pants found on OOP Vogue 1417. I quite like this top. I think Vogue 1525 might make it to the collection even though I'm not all that crazy about pleated pants. I'm thrilled that waistlines are rising, but why is it that when that happens pleats appear?

Kayla Kennington is another new-to-me designer. Vogue 9229 is a fitting tunic and pull-on skirt and pants pattern. I'm too short to pull off the tunic look and I have more than enough pull-on bottoms patterns.  But it is a pretty look for the right body type to pull off.  

This is the last of the new-to-me designer, Paco Peralto, with Vogue 1526.

Now, let's talk about the one must-have pattern on my wish list.
Check out Kathryn Brenne's Vogue 9235! I want to make view D and can't wait until it hits the store shelves... a few more weeks.  Do you have an wants from the new Winter / Holiday collection?  

Happy Sewing!  

Monday, 26 September 2016

Monday's Mending Pile

There is always something or another making it onto the mending pile. Typically, I'm doing laundry on weekends and adding to the pile. 

And it is usually when I've finished ironing something or another that I discover it should have been in the mending pile instead. This week's said item:  

Small holes were discovered in the back armhole seam on both sides. Yikes! I have another version of this top, Butterick 5891, on the sewing table. It is a quick fix but it has me thinking that I need to seriously get back to a daily exercise routine. 

There is nothing like a mending pile to remind a gal to exercise.  

Happy mending...

Thursday, 22 September 2016

In Sewing News Today...

This morning at Sewing Club I discovered the

gen·er·a·tion gap
  1. differences of outlook or opinion between people of different generations.

The students were choosing their projects and I was quite surprised that the most popular choice was a little smiley face that I stitched up and stuffed. I actually thought it would be the least popular but included it just for another option. I called it a "smiley face." To the younger generation, it's an "emoticon." I never thought of it as an emoticon when I was sewing it up. I officially feel old and still loving sewing club. They are teaching me so much!

I haven't been sewing at all this week other than the samples since finishing Mama R's pants. I'm itching to get back to the sewing room because I splurged on a little something for myself.

It was on sale last week and I have a kAtheRine Tilton shirt in mind for this fabric. It looks like it will have to wait until the weekend.  Life has been too busy during the week to get any sewing work done. Why is it that one's sewing mojo is in full swing, when there's not much free time to be sewing?  

Well, that's all in sewing news today...

Happy Sewing!  


Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Sometimes Sewing is Not Relaxing

Goodness, sometimes sewing can be stressful. Like right now, when panic sets in and there is one more day to get the samples done for sewing club and there are kits to put together.  

What can I say besides Mama R was right and I'm a master procraftinator. Shhh, just don't tell Mama R she was right. I just can't take the "I told you sews" right now. It doesn't help when it is the height of allergy season and I wish I were in Banff right now so I wouldn't feel so miserable. Sinus headaches are throwing me off my schedule and focus. But I'm looking forward to the next sewing club. Seriously, is there anything that makes the heart smile more than kids who want to learn how to sew.  

Well, my coffee break is over... back to work.  

Happy Sewing!  

Sunday, 18 September 2016

New Pair of Pants

Well, I've made a new pair of pants but this pair is not for me. Mama R asked if I could take her to the mall and when we got there she asked to go to Sears because she wants to look for a pair of pants. 


Yeah, I know! Isn't that the craziest thing you ever heard? The woman tricked me into taking her to Sears.  

"But, I can sew you a pair of pants," I said through the hurt feelings that were building up inside of me.  

"You're too busy," she replied.  

"No, I'm not," I protested, thinking that I could probably sew a pair of pants in less time that it would take her to find a pair of pants that fit. 

And then she sent me away while she looked, hoping that I would stop nagging her. 

"I didn't find anything good," she said later at our agreed meeting spot, cheering me up a little.  

"Let me try to make you a pair," I quickly offered.  

"You have lots to do for work," she said.

True, I still have to sew those samples for Sewing Club but my wrist is killing me today and my heart is not into hand-stitching. My heart ached to sit at the sewing machine and sew a pair of pants for my Mom.   

"I'm just going to try," I interrupted, "if you don't like them you don't have to wear them."

I pulled out Simplicity 2372, Mama R's go-to dress pattern because it also has a pants pattern that has all the sizes intact. She let me take some measurements and I got to work.

The fabric that I used was a left-over piece that was just enough for a pair of pants. I can't remember where, when or why I bought it but there it was and I thought it would work for a trial run. I suspect that it is a polyester by the way it frayed.

I cut a size 10 crotch length and inseam and a size 18 on the outer leg seam. The waistline was too short and the length was too long. And since I didn't have any more fabric, I cut off four inches from an already shortened legs and pieced it together to make a waistband.

Hand-stitching made its way into this project just to prep for some stitch-in-the-ditch action.

And guess what? Mama R now has a new pair of pants. Now that the needed alterations are all figured out, I'll make a pair in grey British wool this week.

The Stats:

Fabric:     2 metres

Elastic:    1 metre 1" elastic

Pattern:    Simplicity 2372

Additional Tools & Supplies:  Sewing machine, serger, walking foot, regular foot, threads for the sewing machine, serger and hand-stitching, hand needle, scissors, cutting table, pins, iron, ironing board, and one patient Mom.

Happy Sewing!

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

What to Sew Now?

My original fall sewing plans are on hold right now. I still want these items in my wardrobe but I'm back to work with a new exciting assignment. 

So what is a gal to wear when you have the privilege to work with little angels?  Parts of my work week are make up of joyful workdays filled with lots of bending, kneeling, sitting on the floor, sweeping, wiping down tables, and getting dusty in the playground. A professional dress code of no denim, no leggings, no leisure-athletic wear, basically follow these rules throw a challenge into the mix.   

I'm not a casual dresser by any means, it's just not me. I'm most comfortable in a dress and it is my preference when getting dressed for work but this year, it is not always a practical choice. So, what to sew now?  

Enter my new fall sewing plan. Butterick 6097 is my favourite shirt pattern and my favourite shirt but it doesn't cut it in the movement department and it just might be too dressy for the playground. Instead, a flared pullover top, McCall's 7407, might be more appropriate and give me the movement that I will require. Katherine Tilton's loose-fitting pullover top, Butterick 6218, also made it to the new fall sewing plan. I'm certainly looking for tops with sleeves.  

And I need comfortable pants. With the exception of one pair of pants, all my pants, OOP Vogue 1325, are made with 100% wool or wool and cashmere blend and are way too nice for the playground. I'm thinking Marcy Tilton's OOP Vogue 8637 pull-on pants in a black ponte knit or perhaps Donna Karan's pants, OOP Vogue 1417.  

I hope to put away the grey British wool sitting on my cutting table and get to work on these more practical items this weekend. I now have a new understanding and appreciation for what Carolyn from Diary of a Sewing Fanatic went through. It is easy now-a-days to stand in front of a closet full of clothes and say, "I haven't got a thing to wear!" I need to change that.  

Happy Sewing!  


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