Thursday, 23 February 2017

Making sense of my wardrobe - The Challenge

I've always considered myself as someone who knows exactly what they want and how they want to dress, but at some point I think I got a little lost. I have tons of clothes yet I feel like I never have anything nice to wear or my clothes aren't easy to mix and match. Getting dressed in the mornings was getting really frustrating and time consuming and time after time I found myself going for the same outfits. I had to do something!

This was my first outfit when I started the challenge. The vest and skirt are thrifted, the blouse is from H&M.

A little while ago I came across Hilary Rushford's 3 steps to simplified style -video series where she was walking you through on how to make sense of your wardrobe. Unfortunately the video series doesn't seem to be available anymore, but essentially the idea was to only wear each piece of clothing only once until you have nothing left to wear. At first you might opt for those favorite combinations, but once you've worn those you have to get a little more inventive with your choices. I did this for about a month, but I eventually had to stop, because I was running out of winter clothes and only had summer dresses and skirt left - and those aren't so great in -10 degrees Celsius! :D

I think even these few weeks of experimenting helped me find some clarity in my style rut. I re-discovered some clothes I haven't worn in a while, came up with new combinations and finally found the determination to get rid of some stuff I sort of like, but never seem to wear. I also feel much more strongly about the colors that I want to have i my wardrobe and and the colors that really don't work for me.

I of course tried to document as much as I could, but sometimes I had days when I just opted for jeans and a sweater, because I just wasn't in the mood for dressing up. 

So here are some of the outfits from along the way:

The skirt is made by me, and while it fits nicely and looks nice, the color is just not me. I really don't feel like myself wearing anything light grey, so I decided to let skirt go. Blouse is thrifted and sweater made by me.

I hadn't worn this 60's merino sweater in a long time, until I tried it on with skinny jeans - totally works!

This kind of green is one of my favorite colors and one of the best for my complexion. This time I paired it with cognac and burnt orange instead of my usual black. Dress made by me.

This is one of my go-to-outfits, I always seem to pair this skirt with something red. Skirt made by me, cardigan thrifted.

I haven't worn this skirt much, because I find the color hard to pair, but it seems to work just fine with this pale yellow blouse. Blouse thrifted, skirt made by me.

Another one of my go-to outfits: me-made 50s repro sweater paired with a black thrifted skirt.

This dress I made after a 30s sewing pattern for a vintage fair where I was as a vendor. I really like the dark brown color.

My first pink skirt! This thrifted Anne Klein tweed skirt is so warm and the color seems to work nicely with dark green. All pieces are thrifted.

The sweater on top is made by me, but it's so hot I rarely get the chance to wear it. The sweater on the bottom is thrifted and one of my favorites, partly because of the beautiful color. Beige skirt is made by me.
After finishing this challenge and clarifying my current tastes I feel inspired to make some new clothes. First I just have to get rid of the old ones to make some room :P

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

Make-do and mend: re-purposing an old men's jacket

It's been a long long time since I wrote here, which is partly to blame on the crappy weather and partly on my reluctance to get myself all made-up and take pictures. The weather has been mostly grey and cloudy, so it's incredibly rare to get a beautiful weekend to go out and take pictures. One such lucky weekend did happen earlier this winter though when I was able to go out with my friend to take some photos of this project of mine. It just took me this long to actually write about it. 

I had been seeing pictures on Pinterest from magazines and books from the 40's encouraging women to re-purpose old men's suits to make suits for themselves. I was inspired by these pictures and when I saw a men's jacket made in a lovely fabric at a thrift shop, I decided to try what I could do with it. 

Picture found on What I Found

Now, I'm really really forgetful when it comes to documenting my work. I get so absorbed in my work that I can completely forget to document it. So unfortunately I don't really have any pictures of the different phases that went in to this jacket. 
What I can tell you though is that I completely had to take apart the original jacket, which was already a lot of work, to be able to cut the new pieces out of it. However I was able to get almost all of the materials from the old jacket including the lining. I just had to add some extra interfacing. I didn't like the original buttons so I used some other vintage buttons that were gifted to me. So I could proudly say this jacket was at least 90% re-purposed. 

Here is the finished product!
The jacket is made out of medium-weight beige wool with small plaid pattern. The buttons are vintage and most likely pre-1960's

Repurposed jacket made out of a men's jacket by Cherise

Repurposed jacket made out of a men's jacket by Cherise
Repurposed jacket made out of a men's jacket by Cherise

Repurposed jacket made out of a men's jacket by Cherise

Repurposed jacket made out of a men's jacket by Cherise

Saturday, 21 January 2017

Vapriikki-vintage 28.-29.1.2017

"Vapriikki-Vintage juhlii tällä kertaa satavuotiasta Suomea! Tapahtumassa perinteinen vintagetori lauantaina klo 11-18 ja sunnuntaina klo 10-18. Torille vapaa pääsy, aktiviteetteihin Vapriikin pääsymaksulla. Runsaasti oheisohjelmaa! Tarkat ohjelmatiedot löytyvät tapahtuman sivuilta. Saavu nauttimaan vanhanajan hengestä!"

Tapahtuman Facebook -sivuilta saat lisätietoa ohjelmasta.

Myös allekirjoittaneen löytää jälleen kerran Vapriikista molempina päivinä. Mukana mm. nämä ihanat mekkoset sekä muutamia uusia koruja. Tulkaahan moikkaamaan! :)

Model: Venus Mantrap

Model: Tamara Kamikaze

Saturday, 9 July 2016

DIY: Palazzo-pants pattern

As promised, I'm finally going to show you how I altered my basic pants pattern to make these 40's inspired palazzo-pants.

I've seen instructions on the Internet that tell you to add the width to your basic pants pattern to the side and inner leg.
This would be fine if you just want the leg to be straight and even in width. But if you're looking to get some flare, I would advice against this method. Adding a lot of flare to the inner thigh will result in the fabric bunching up between your legs awkwardly. Instead it would be better to add the width evenly spreading out the pattern pieces in the middle.

I'm going to guide you through the steps with a miniature pattern, because the real pattern is so large it would be really hard to photograph.

For these pants you will need a basic pants pattern for woven fabric, either drafted to your measurements or a standard size that's closest to your waist measurement. These pants fit quite loosely around the hip, so a standard size will do just fine and still look great.

Start by  defining the lines where you're going to spread out the pattern. I'm going to spread at the center line / waist dart closest to the center front/back. I'm also going to spread the pieces at the crotch hook. Do this closer to the point where the line starts to curve rather than too close to the crotch point.

Cut along the lines, but leave a hinge where the circles are in the picture below

Take a piece of patter paper and draw a horizontal line. This will be aligned with the seat line.

Align the back piece with this line at the seat. measure 3 cm to the right and align the front piece at the seat line. I added a few centimeters here because I didn't want the crotch seam to cling to my body. if you're making narrower pants you can leave out this step. Or if you'd like more ease, for example if you have a full bum or belly or you're making very wide pants, you can add a little more, up to 6 cm. You can try and see what feels and looks the best for you.

Tape or glue to keep the pieces in place.

Now measure 6 cm at the leg on both pieces from the line at the inner thigh. Rotate the pieces at the hinge where you see a small circle. Tape to keep in place

Now measure 12 cm at the center line of the leg and rotate at the hinge at the point of the dart. Don't worry if your dart closes completely or not, we'll take care of this at the end. Tape the pieces to keep in place.

Now measure 6 cm again on both sides at the outside of the leg (side seams) and draw a new side seam that connects to the hip line.

Join the pieces at the bottom leg and crotch line to create smooth curves.

Draw a grain line that's at a 90 degree angle with the crotch line.

Now, if your darts didn't close completely or if they overlapped where you spread out the leg, no worries.
If the dart didn't close completely you can either add the amount left over to the next dart if there's only like 0,5cm or less, or divide it between the dart and side seam if there's more than 0,5 cm or so

If your dart overlapped you can reduce the amount either from the side seam or the next dart.

I had about 0,5cm left of the dart so I just moved it to the next dart taking 0,25cm in from both sides.

If you want to add more or less flare to the leg, a basic rule of thumb would be to add half of the amount in the middle to the inner leg and side. 
For example if you wanted super wide pants you could add 24 cm to the middle of the leg and 12 cm to the inner leg and side seam.

And here you have a basic pattern for Palazzo-pants! :)
Have fun experimenting with different kinds of waist lines and waist bands, or adding some pockets!

You can also see the pants in action here :)

Monday, 4 July 2016

Inspiration: 1930s catalogue dress

Suvi-Vintage fair is now over and it's time to sit back and take a breath until it's time to go again.

I thought I'd take this lazy day and show you my day 1 outfit from the weekend.

30s calatogue dress made by CheriseDesign

I had already made this dress earlier for my shop in a different fabric, but I wanted one for myself as well. And since blue doesn't really suit me, I chose to use this vintage rayon fabric I had bought from a friend.

30s calatogue dress made by CheriseDesign
This version of the dress is available for purchase in my Etsy Shop. Model: Pussy C'outure.

I had saved this catalog picture a long time ago and browsing through my files came across it again. I thought the style was pretty much perfect, but I did make a few changes.

The dress I'm talking about is the red one on the top right.

For starters I made the neckline a little more open. I often find myself not using dresses with very tight necklines. They just make me feel a bit uncomfortable.
Second: I made the skirt from 4 pieces cut on full bias. This gives the fabric a little bit of stretch and makes it fall beautifully. This makes the skirt appear very slinky and hug the curve while it still flares out a little bit at the hemline.
Third: no pockets on this one.

30s calatogue dress made by CheriseDesign

The dresses I made for my shop have fabric covered buttons and buckles, but for my version I used real vintage buttons. 

30s calatogue dress made by CheriseDesign

This dress turned out to be an instant favorite. It's flattering yet comfy. The blousy top allows me to breathe and move my arms freely. Maybe I could even use this dress for dancing :)

30s calatogue dress made by CheriseDesign

I paired the dress with white espadrilles that I hunted high and low for. I checked almost every shoe shop in the downtown area until  I finally found a pair at an outlet shop. I guess espadrilles not that fashionable this spring/summer :P

30s calatogue dress made by CheriseDesign

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