I’m busily writing a post about fit, fit, fit and fit problems of commercial patterns. Then I open my blog feed to find this incredibly inspirational and instructive piece by my favourite sewing blogger at “Cloning Couture.” I learn so much here from the thought process of the design and from the stories of the technical approaches. And just note how the gown fits her!

I am so grateful for other sewers/designers whose capabilities far surpass mine! So much to learn…

Cloning Couture

My last post detailed my pool party tunic for the wedding our family attended in Miami earlier this month. The wedding was black tie and of course I created a special dress (when friends and family know you sew, you can’t exactly show up at these affairs in a store bought garment).

Here is the inspiration design and spectacular fabric from B&J’s. I spotted this while shopping in the NYC garment district and knew this would be the fabric to work with.


The black silk taffeta from Como, Italy is a border design composed of hand painted flowers and dimensional black flowers in what felt like vinyl paint. A closeup look shows the brush strokes. This design was definitely done by hand; there is somewhat of a repeat but there are irregularities characteristic of hand work.


Now that I have the fabric, what to do with it? Sometimes the…

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A Black Tie Wedding: What to Wear

My not-so-fast-and-easy linen dress project (which I’ll tell you about tomorrow) seems to be one of those current in-the-air ideas! And this lovely sewer does it on purpose. I really love this idea. In fact, it is a bit like doing a Chanel-style LBJ: you start with a simple pattern and create a masterpiece of couture sewing because of the techniques chosen.

I say, do not be a slave to a pattern! ~ GG

Lately, I’ve been sewing much simpler patterns, but taking time in finishing to make my items look really polished. There is nothing quite like the secret joy of knowing your skirt is lined in fun colouror that your pockets are made of a contrasting fabric. I’ve assembled some of my favourite ways to jazz up easy projects.

  1. Bind with bias tape.If you have been following this blog or my instagram feed, this will be absolutely no shock to you. you can use bias tape to bind a hem, bind a seam with gathering, bind arm and neck holes or do a Hong Kong finish to bind raw edges
  2. Play with direction on patterned fabrics.I love, love playing with stripes and plaid. By cutting on the bias or opposite the grain, you can easily upgrade basics. So easy and so fun!
  3. Make self-fabric buttons.This is a little tricker, but so worth…

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Easy ways to make simple projects look fancy