Monday, February 20, 2012

Tweedily Mee

This project has been a long time coming. I made it Mid-January and Inspite of it, I am happy that I finally have the chance to share it with you.

Recently, I applied for a new job and decided to make myself a 2-piece suit, since I don’t currently own a matching one appropriate for an interview. I’ve been wanting to try my hand at tailoring a suit for a while and was inspired by a tweed ensemble discovered in GQ Magazine. Although tweed is not the “norm” in Miami, I love the sophistication of the material.

The jacket is a McCall’s pattern (M6087) and the pant is self drafted. I shorten the jacket a lot because I’m petite and I didn’t want it to look oversized. (That’s the beauty of being able to sew for oneself.) The pant pockets are made of the same lining found inside the jacket. In hindsight, I would make sure the interior pockets are made of the same fabric of the pant. The contrast was too extreme. The pants were also a bit rushed (to be worn for a party), so the finishing on the inside isn’t the best.

The fabric is actually an upholstery textile. I grabbed it for a great price. Although it looks lovely and you can’t tell it’s upholstery, the sewing process was tremendous because it frays a lot.

Overall it’s my first suit and I’m proud of the effort; and I am looking forward to making another one, among other tailored pieces for myself.

I'm pictured at a party I attended in January

Monday, January 2, 2012

Winter Renegade Cardigan

This is one of my favorite projects to date. I’ve been needing a black cardigan for a very long time and with winter still approaching (in Miami), this was the best time to make it.
Obviously, this is not your basic black cardigan. With my style and taste, I had to spice it up a few notches. I’m a big fan of high collars, so I added one in pleather. Since the collar is surprisingly high, it converts to a folded collar, which is great, because that wasn’t intentional. So it can be worn two different ways. The placket for the buttons is also constructed from pleather and the welt pocket (at the chest) and closure too. The waistband around the bottom of the jacket is applied perpendicular to the top and closes with a metal latch hook. Best of all, the sleeves can be pulled up for a more casual look.

Smoking Bottoms

These are my favorite pants to date. I’ve entitled them “Smoking Bottoms” because they are inspired by vintage pants from the 1960’s.

This is my second attempt at making pants. For my first attempt I traced a pair of jeans that I owned to create the pattern and although the results were pretty cool, the crouch wasn’t very successful. Click here to see the Preppy Grunge Skinny Leg Pants project! Thanks to this video on YouTube, I learned how to properly attach a zipper to pants. (

For this project, I drafted my own pattern based upon techniques I learned from a pattern making class and these pants have a skinny leg – indeed. I designed the pants with an overlapping waistband with a metal latch hook closure, but I found that the pants would slip off my waist a lot. Several months later I added belt loops for a better fit. Additionally, there are two welt pockets at the back. I only wished I added buttons to secure my wallet.

Although the material appears differently in the photographs, these pants are made of a medium weight linen, so they are very breathable. Additionally, the color and the style are classic, so they’ll be a part of my wardrobe for a very long time.

I first wore them on my vacation cruise last October.

'AllSaints' Fair Isle Hooded Crew

I’m a big fan of AllSaints aesthetic. I adore the brand’s style because it’s so different and the interiors of the stores is pretty cool too. The hooded crew is one of my favorite pieces. It’s a perfect design for “Summery Winters” in Miami. However, the price for this baby is a cool $60 (retail price; see the original AllSaints shirt in the last photograph shown). Nonetheless, I found this great “Fair Isle” jersey print for $2.50 p/y and the rest is history.

Although this material has been sitting in my sewing nooks for several months, a new Christmas shirt was the perfect time for me to use it. Since I’ve never seen the hooded crew in person, I had to imagine how the hood was constructed. In the AllSaints photograph, it looks effortless; the drape and all. I’m not sure if mine is constructed the same exact way, but I like it regardless.

I maintained the ribbed jersey knit around the around, but made them slightly shorter. My upgrade includes the metal grommets for the drawstring and the amazing print.
On Christmas Day I paired it with a coordinating button (which can be seen in the photos) and charcoal grey khakis. The ensemble was a breeze!