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Belle du Jour

It's been a while since I've done a little outfit post but that's because I'm gearing up for my Etsy shop! Preview some of the items I'm making in different sizes here.

  Yes, yes... I opened the account on there in 2008 but I really didn't know what I was doing with it, how to gain attention, etc. It still could go either way as Etsy sites go, but I've been super-excited to make a bunch of new, cool things. The line sheet isn't really a true, cohesive collection (pretty sure I would have gotten yelled at in school for it) but it's totally my aesthetic. Patternmaking for it all should go by pretty quickly.

I went thrifting to see if I could find any unique vintage pieces that made its way to the thrift store as I have amazing luck with one place in particular and I did find a few fun things that will also go up for sale soon.

I found this dress and immediately loved the print, but I decided to keep this for me because it's definitely not 20 years or older like it needs to be to sell on Etsy. Boooooo. It does have a retro-ish feel to it though.

 Not sure if I'll ever burn this mushroom candle!

Yeah, I'm nuts. Not surprising when you spend most of your off days in a sewing room, working on sewing patterns all the time. Lately, I've mostly been prepping my pattern blocks for different sizing. I did buy a pattern grading book, but it's not as user-friendly as the one the designer I was interning for had. No worries - I have it figured out! The way I'm working on it might be slightly more time consuming, but I think it will be fine.

I got my pattern blocks from college, but we drafted them out of my beloved pattern making book that all of us had in school. The cover is dated and they have a 5th edition out now, but the information is mostly the same. Using it reminds me of this fashion designer sketch set I had when I was about 9 years old. I also had the rub-off fashion plates  back in kindergarten too - anyone remember those? I still have my original ones, on the shelf nearby the sewing room!

I think I was pretty much set up to be a fashion designer when I grew up, but it's taken me this long to figure out that this is exactly what I want to do and not work in the corporate fashion world. I'll always love retail however.

I'll be debuting some new pieces fairly soon - I'm still in the blogosphere but busy! Stay tuned!


  1. So nice to see a new outfit post from you. Cute dress. I really like your mushroom candle too.

  2. Wow i wish i was talented enough to grade patterns. People ask me to make things for them sometimes, but unless i have a pattern to fit them i have to pass them up. I love you orange bookshelf - cute dress too!

    1. It's actually much easier than you would think! I just had a mini crash course on it, so I'm no expert but it might be a little easier than pattern making (at least for me.) If you can graph, you can grade a pattern! :) I do have a book for it, but it's not as user-friendly as another book I was using that is super expensive online now. :(

      I did have to make patterns in another size for my drag queen about 2 years ago now and this is before I knew grading. If you have a pattern making book, you can take the measurements you need and apply them to a new pattern block draft or even an existing pattern. Just make a test muslin. The pattern making book will actually tell you how to draft the basic blocks you would need for anything. It's such freedom, really.

      Do you guys have Built by Wendy books out there? I love her books. I actually use a fashion design school textbook to make my patterns (not by Wendy). However, Wendy has a fantastic book out there that helps you make patterns (and in your custom size!) of dresses. She also has a jacket one. Those are a great series to start off with if you want to try to make your own patterns. She really walks you through it all.

      Here is the link for it if you're interested:

      It seems it got less-than-favorable reviews on Amazon, but you seem to have a pretty good grasp on sewing from what I can tell. Pattern making took me at least 5 years to be comfortable with, so it's not something that will come overnight. But it's worth giving it a shot! :)

    2. hmm I may have to invest in a good pattern making book. Thanks for the tips! We have the Built by Wendy books but I didn't know that there was a pattern making one! Id love to be able to do that. Just look at a picture and start drawing. Or draping would be good - but I don't have a dress form.
      I will have to look in to it more! thanks again!


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