Thursday, June 20, 2013

Japanese Book Review - Wearable Dresses

I have a new favorite book.  It's a Japanese sewing book that loosely translated as "Handmade dresses that you love to wear". It's from Boutique Sha. It's a new book so I don't think it is available in English yet. I bought it from Kinokuniya.

I've already bookmarked some of the patterns in the book. Here are some of my favourites.

This dress is very easy with only 2 pattern pieces - front and back. Should be easy but afraid that it will be too baggy?

Colour block dress
 This one looks so comfy. But the shape may not be suitable for me?

knit dress
 Smock dress with ties.

smock dress
And, this is my favorite. It's a wrap dress. Looks so sweet and pretty.  I've already cut out the fabric for this one using some very light weight cotton have on hand. It's a bit sheer so I'll wear a slip under it. Can't wait to sew it up.

I love this one that is a front button dress that double up as a light jacket.

This one is shorter with buttons on the bodice and gathered skirt.

Another of my favorite. Peplum style dress. It looks like 2 piece but in actual fact, it is a dress with elastic waist.

Dress no. 27 is using the same pattern piece as no. 25 above. So, if you cut out this pattern pieces, you can make 2 dresses!  Instead of a peplum, you make a ruffle at the skirt hem and a self-fabric ties.  I've also cut out the fabric for this one so let's see how it goes.

Most of the patterns for the 27 dresses are using common pieces so you can make different style with the same pieces, save time in cutting the pieces! But like all japanese pattern book, you need to trace carefully over the different color codes. This one has few pattern pieces so the lines don't overlapped as much.

I like that the style of this book is very wearable and not too boxy like most japanese sewing pattern book.  So, hopefully I will be able to sew them up over the next few weekends and post them on the blog.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Lace Overlay Tunic

June is a busy month for mummy in Singapore. With the month long school holiday, most family take the opportunity to travel overseas. We just came back from Hong Kong and boy, was it hot! We promised ourselves never to visit Hong Kong in June. It was too hot and I had headache every day! Maybe a visit to Malaysia or Australia will be the next best options.

Anyway, I did manage to do some sewing for myself.  This lace overlay tunic was from the Japanese magazine called Lady Boutique. I bought this from Popular bookstore at NEX shopping mall.

In this issue, they included 4 patterns for the 4 styles listed on the top left corner on the cover. I fell in love with the coral tunic with lace overlay on this page.

This tunic has only 3 pattern pieces: front, back and sleeve.  I love how versatile this tunic is and the magazine gave some suggestions on how to wear them: Casual, semi-formal and formal. I love it that the sleeves have the lace cuff that will show when you fold up the sleeve. It is also long enough for you to belt it if you wish.

For my version, I happen to have the chiffon that may just work on this tunic. I bought it at Chinatown for $3 a yard. The base is some turquoise blue cotton that I forgot where I bought it. I think I took one night to cut up and another night to sew. I did the sewing on Thursday night after work and finish it to wear to work the next day. It was really comfortable.

I think the sleeve is a tad too wide so if you are thinking about sewing this tunic, you can safely cut off 2" and taper to 1" at the arm sync.  The view below is when I fold up the cuff to show the chiffon overlay. Very cute.

The pattern recommends a longer invisible zipper but I only have this 20cm normal zipper in the right color so I just use it. Anyway, I was able to wear it over my head still. But I got some issue with the instruction as it calls for the zipper to be inserted after sewing the side seams. It would have been easier if I sew the zipper first, imho.

But, I still love the tunic. It hit the right length at my hip. Since it was a dress down friday, I pair it with my jeans. I tried to pose like the model but I've got a long way to go. Maybe I should wear a sling bag, no?

That's all for the poses. I had to rush off to work and fetching the younger one to childcare. Maybe I will take proper photo of this tunic outdoor someday.