Thursday, February 16, 2017

Manic Pop F/W 2017 Collection

Ta daaaaa!

I cannot remember the last time I did a mini fashion collection, illustrated it, and "released" it.

Generally, I have an inspiration board for these types of things but this time I just went with fabric inspiration first and played with sketching silhouettes, using the same color palette throughout.

The fabric on the right here is my "soundwave" repeat that I drew out with Prismacolor marker initially and then played with a repeat. I used this print in the "collection" here.

 And below are the flats (no, I did not draw out the back - haha) and colorways of the collection. I like how it came out!

I realize that technically, I should use Illustrator for all my flats, but I tend to be a rebel. I am Illustrator capable (and have posted flats with Illustrator prior) but I have much more fun when I can draw, ink, and then scan them in for coloring in Photoshop.

But nearly 10 years out of fashion design school, I have given up on ever entering the "industry". I would much rather keep playing, making one-off crazy creations of whatever I want, and perhaps eventually trickling some things out at some point with a small-batch manufacturer or design/sell PDF patterns since I also know how to make those.

I know how to do a lot, but the Industry is fickle.

I know this sounds like a call for sympathy, but it's not. It's just coming to the realization that I have the most fun when I am playing, testing, creating, and goofing off with whatever I want. I love hand-sketching, I love playing with prints, I even love working out the puzzle that is pattern making and then sewing it up. I also love 3D Roomstyler and non-fashion design related creative things! I've been fighting my natural tendency and what I truly want for years.

So don't fight yourself! Let your creativity do its thang and be happy. Keep playing!

Friday, January 27, 2017

Playing with Fabric Prints - Late 2016

Thought I would throw in my fabric repeat designs this week. These are ones I was playing with in the late months of 2016. Lately, I have been doing other fashion-related things instead of actively sewing, but I am sure I will get back to sewing.

Here is the 2nd iteration of a repeat I liked that I made. The wavy part was hand-drawn with Prismacolor markers and then imported to Photoshop where I created the repeat.

The 1st round of this print went something like this though, which I decided was way too "all over the place".

Another entirely different one I was playing with was this one, although I still may have to play with color choices on it. 

I don't know which one I actually like better now that I look at it. I think I like the colorway of the mustard/red/blue one the most, but the red should be in a different spot.

I could see myself eventually making these available via Spoonflower someday, but I want to go and rework the 2nd one here the most. 

This is what that piece looks like repeated and colored with watercolor pencils, which I love (below). I'm thinking I will have to recolor the motif with watercolor pencils and then see if it looks 1000 times better.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Logan Square's Mica Building - 3d Roomstyler

I know I normally post fashion design but.... I like to think of this blog as a good example of random creative things I've done/played with.

That being said, I just finished another apartment layout via 3D Roomstyler! Clearly, this program is somewhat of an addiction for me, but I really don't have a problem with that.

Since the last one I did was New York, I definitely needed one to be right here in my own city.

I chose the Mica Building mostly because, I didn't know how I felt about these gigantic buildings suddenly popping up off the California blue line stop. I pass these buildings every day on my way to and from work and I couldn't fathom living in either of them. If you ask any long-time Chicagoan about the crazy housing boom that's going on in Logan Square, we all don't know how we feel about it.

So I wondered.... could someone fall in love with a building just doing a 3D Roomstyler layout on them?

Again, I am not a professional by any means, but this is what I came up with by looking at the South 04 one bedroom layout.

 The skyline isn't EXACTLY what you would see from Milwaukee Avenue, but you get the idea. 

Here is my layout (below) versus the actual building layout. 

And then here is the view looking at the kitchen:

 Another angle on the livingroom/kitchen:

Here is what is looks like upon entering the apartment from your front door:

And here is your hallway leading to both bathroom and bedroom. From the hallway, I started throwing in lots of Chicago-y things, of course like the art print on the wall.

Below is the very small bathroom which was also harder to get a photo of.

 And saving the best for last.... the bedroom with an awesome Chicago art print on the wall.

It looks like the one-bedroom unit like I Roomstyled goes for $1845/month. My layout came out to be roughly 85 sq ft more than this unit which was 796 sq ft.

More information on these apartments and more of their layouts on here.

If you want more 3D Roomstyler shots, inspiration, or to make your own 3D interior, go here.

Happy planning! 

Thursday, January 19, 2017

In-Depth 3D Roomstyler - Chelsea Studio Apartment

Alright, so many of you may know that I have been LOVING playing with a free program online called 3D Roomstyler.

In it, you can design your own rooms, add whatever kind of furniture, fixtures, and anything else you cam think of to "design" a home, a room, an exterior.

Well, I finally made one based off of a real apartment in the Chelsea neighborhood of NYC!

What I did was find floorplans and from there, I drew the walls in 3D Roomstyler the best I could. It's really surreal to see an actual place that exists and you walking around in it in 3D Roomstyler!

Here is my own render of the living room. Now keep in mind, I took a lot of creative liberties; I also don't know much about home design, so I am just a random person playing around in a program.

This is the layout that I went by, found online here:

And here is a screenshot of my layout below.

My rendering (above) of the kitchen. Instead of brick like in the actual apartment, I chose a wallpaper.

The one below is low-res, but I couldn't get the brick wall to render correctly for some reason on here. So low-res screenshot it is!

My render (below) of looking from the living room, towards the bathroom. 

Boring hallway shot (below) but I wanted to take a photo from that angle so you could get an idea of the entrance.

And a very, very small bathroom that was hard to get a proper photo of! Rendering below by me. 

Super cool, right?!

Here are photos from the website that I just did screen grabs of, in case the listing disappears someday. Any of the radiators in 3D Roomstyler were mostly too big, so I just didn't put them in there. But you get the idea of how it's all laid out.

It's crazy to be able to do a model of an apartment you have never been in, nor ever plan on being in!

Looks like it's still up for rent if anyone wants it.

McCall's M7291

It's been a while, I know. If any of you have seen me on Instagram, I have been playing around, making this capelet for MONTHS. (It doesn't take that long at all to make, I just took super-long pauses.) 

My reasoning for not making as many things as I was before is because I'm working on a myriad of other creative things in general (involved 3D Roomstyles, fashion sketching, and putting together a mini fashion collection on Photoshop, hand-drawing and designing my own prints), plus I have finally graduated to a store manager position! Yay! After nearly a decade of ASM, I finally have "my own" store. 

this one is McCalls M7291!  

I accidentally made almost exactly what was on the pattern packet. Online, the fabric was a little more ". mustard-y yellow but to me, the fabric color reads more "tan-brown". This pattern is actually a "Learn to Sew" pattern (haha, I have been making my own sewing patterns for over 13 years now) but I couldn't resist picking up this pattern because of the unique construction of it. 

 I used a melton wool from I had used their melton wool for a Burda wool coat before and I love it! I think it ended up with just the right amount of drape.

 Ok, so here is a crappy phone photo of me. Originally, I had planned on adding these wool flowers onto it for a more unique effect, but they just ended up looking misplaced and a bad way. It was a more artistic approach to it, but it doesn't work. However, if perhaps you did a flat applique on the sleeves (I think a black version with colorful, different sized star appliques could look amazing!) that could work.
The purple inside sleeve is an accident, but a great accident. I made my own lining for this capelet (yup, I hate jackets with no linings!) and miscalculated how the sleeve lining should work out. I didn't have any more fabric left from the melton to make an inside sleeve facing to attach to the lining, nor did I have enough lining to recut the sleeve linings. 

Sooooo I went with this purple poly poplin in my stash.

The inside lining is not as smoothly finished as I would like, but I had issues with imagining exactly how the lining would work out with the way the sleeve is sewn inside the princess seam of the jacket. Either way, you would end up with an exposed, ugly seam on the inside of the jacket. 

What I COULD do is do a Hong Kong seam on the inside to cover up my serged edges, but I don't have that kind of patience nor do I care that much. The inside is well-enough finished to my liking and the outside looks great. 

I have definitely made a better jacket lining before (like my Burda one from about 2 years ago now) but it's fine.

Here's a more detailed look at my new capelet on my dressform.

Alright, now I just need the weather to be maybe 50 degrees-ish and I can wear this outside! It's been a mild winter in Chicago, so maybe I can wear this sooner than I thought? I would only safely wear this in spring and fall though. It gets far too cold and scary out here to ever use this as a "winter coat".  

This is a great pattern and a beginner would have a lot of fun with it if they didn't use a melton wool like I did (too much to finish probably for a newbie) but a ponte knit or a thick knit could work nicely for someone brand new to sewing!

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Simplicty 8014 - Rain Cloud Shirtdress!

I'm back with a new dress! 

Like I said, I have been super lazy and using commercial patterns for about a year now. This one is a shirtdress by Simplicity -- pattern number 8014.

I did a mix of multiple views to create my perfect shirtdress. I technically cut a View C but used the collar in View A and D. I think I made my cuffed sleeve and sleeve tabs differently than the pattern asked me to do, but I do what I want. Haha. 

Best of all, this dress already had a pocket bag pattern! Many times, I will create my own if there is enough room in the skirt portion.

I also had to change the grainline of the yoke on my pattern (ie. cut it the opposite direction). Normally, you would cut your back yoke on a shirt or shirtdress on a crosswise grain because it prevents stretching out and gives your garment more stiffness/structure. 

Well, that simply wasn't going to work with a one-way print! I would never hear the end of how I "cut it wrong" by anyone while I was wearing it.

Ta daaa!!! I cut a size 10 and really didn't have to make any adjustments except to hem length (of course). I probably took off only 2 inches or so and hemmed it with a 1 inch hem like I do on most hems.

This pattern has a LOT of pieces but I feel like that's typical with shirtdresses. It wasn't complicated, just a lot of steps. If you're someone who wants a quick sew, this pattern probably isn't for you. I sew very quickly, but this one took me a little longer. 

Let's talk about the PRINT!

It's these super cute smiling rain clouds!!! 

I saw this fabric and instantly knew I had to have it. I ended up with the last 3-ish yards of it from! The print is by Riley Blake and called "Greatest Adventure" by Cinderberry Stitches. 

I like how the fabric is a PERFECT weight for a shirtdress. It was the exact weight I had been hoping for -- a thicker cotton that almost feels like a denim but.... not. Amazing! 

I'm so excited to have a go-to shirtdress pattern now in my wardrobe! I absolutely love shirtdresses and I never find good ones at retail stores. Now... look out for more shirtdresses! 

Next, I am working on McCall's "Learn to Sew" capelet (although I am WAY past the "learn to sew" stage.) I have created a lining for it since it didn't come with one. That's one of my biggest pet peeves! I cannot wear a jacket of any sort with NO LINING. I made a super awesome lining in my Burda jacket last year and the wool Burda coat the year or so before that. It made and it is a thousand times better than if I had just made it without one. 

Coats/jackets are actually my favorite things to sew and I am looking forward to the way this next one is going to go together!

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Sewing Knits without a Serger - New Post on The Art Shake

Hey everyone!

Just a reminder to stop by the other blog I contribute to -- a West Michigan-based blog called The Art Shake. This month, I show you my process and testing tips/tricks to sewing a knit garment entirely without a serger!

Don't miss it!

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