I have seen some gorgeous ballroom jewelry like this lately at competitions and had an inkling of how to make it myself but it took Stitches and Sparkles Blessing Bennet to show the details.
Once the gown was done and those darned floats made, it was time to guild the lily.
I started with a paper cut out pattern:
The cutting board is covered with Press n Seal to keep the goop off it and no, those lovely scissors were not used on the paper!
Traced the pattern onto power mesh:
Cut it out, and added some silicone bathtub caulk. It dries clear:
Did this for a few layers, adding sheets of power mesh. There are 4 layers, I think. I let each one dry for quite awhile – over night or at least several hours. After adding the new sheet, I pressed it down with a plastic knife, then I put the pattern back over it all and taped it down:
Cut it out with scissors and a bit of sharp blade work to get into the tiny bits in the pattern:
You can see my amazing blue tooth speakers in the background. They are nice and compact, wireless Bluetooth and run off my iPad or phone, charged with a USB connection. They are good enough quality to play Stuff You Should Know or This American Life or Q with Jian Ghomeshi podcasts while the noisy old serger is going!
Add a few rhinestones and voila!
All this work for a 90 second demonstration at half time of our local university basketball game! More photos to come after Snowball this weekend!
I like the back view best out of this batch of photos. The Photographer needs to move the camera a bit lower so I don’t look so much like a dwarf.
Front view. You can see that the trial of competition hair has been relatively successful. The “bun” (which I have significantly changed since this photo was taken) is too low on the back of my head. I need all the extra height I can get! And because I usually have my hair in a short, sort of fluffy bob, the sleek hair plus removal of the glasses caused at least one friend to ask who this was that The Photographer had taken pictures of!
We have a very short demo to do this weekend to advertise our club, so with any luck I will have finished the necklace that is still in the planning stages and we will get photos of the full meal deal.
Apologies to those who might have already read this on Pattern Review.
There has been precious little sewing going on in this part of the world lately and it has not been because I have been spending time decorating for the festive season. The big Rubbermaid totes are out from under the stairs and the tree has been purchased. So that is the good news. But life sometimes gets in the way and then there are incidents like this. Bear in mind that we are not even sure this stuff will be a good colour match. We took a chance and ordered it based on checking the colour swatch on several different computer monitors. Eek!
Can’t find a good match in chiffon of any sort for the current ballgown, so DH hits the google and finds some that looks pretty good. Great that you can track the shipping! The seller ships quickly, they keep it at the border forever, but whatever – fuchsia silk chiffon is obviously dangerous and needs to be scrutinized. Then it is miraculously about to be delivered the next day! Huzzah! Not so fast…
The next tracking note is: “left at a UPS facility” and the next day, same note! OK, so let’s go pick it up. I don’t think so. After scrounging around for a phone number and getting “for your convenience” voice mail jail, I get a nice lady who tells me I can’t. I have to wait until they have a “failed attempt to deliver.” Which will happen on Monday. If they don’t leave it at the facility again. And of course she has no idea why they left it behind or if they plan to put it on the #$%^*ing truck on Monday, either!
To top it off, she hands me a nice bit of phrasing that I am sure they paid some customer service specialist to teach her to say. “That must be frustrating for you. You have been waiting to get that package for a long time and you would really like to have it.” Well, yes, I would. And I don’t appreciate being spoken to the way I speak to toddlers.
I don’t need the fabric right away and don’t have time to sew it, but omg this kind of stuff is aggravating.
I know what you are thinking – where are the floats? Well, I worked hard on them, go them completed and attached and flat out hated them! So it is on to plan C, I guess. I do not like the twirly “wind chines” floats, but until w can find chiffon to match this gown, that is what we will have. And they have to be done this evening, as I will NOT be up in the wee hours Thursday working on finishing them. I can make plenty of stupid mistakes sewing in the middle of the day without complicating things by time pressure and brain fog. LOL.
Voila! The beginning of the decoration phase. Also known as the sore shoulders phase. When I mentioned to my massage therapist that she was digging pretty hard into one spot that really hurt she kinda barked at me that it was from putting on all those rhinestones and I should smarten up! She was nicer before she became a mom. Now she has that moral authority and that combo of “I’m hurting you for your own good” and “if you would do what I would tell you it wouldn’t hurt so much” and “what am I gonna do with this kid?” Luckily she is a good mom, so it also has that “oh honey, I’m sorry it hurts. You’ll feel better soon.”
We won’t even go into what she did to my calves…
So the horsehair braid has arrived, not without pain. UPS, customs, duty and I bunch of I-told-you-so from the Design Consultant who lives here. Actually, he only said it once, but still….
The good news is that the colour is perfect. Hats By Leko has the most amazing selection of crin, which is what the cool kids call horsehair braid these days. Great browsing just for the fun of it and a great tutorial on making a crin hat.
Stones and appliques should be here any time. But while I am waiting I have been having some fun putting bits of fabric together to make cute bibs for work. Not, this is not the “q” word. Just recycling.
I think I promised a tutorial for wine bags, too. I see I have photos all ready to go so we will see how the weekend goes and maybe that will appear soon.
Well, at least I have ordered more stuff. If you read my facebook posts you will know that I have ordered rhinestones. For the very few who aren’t my facebook friends (a select group) but ARE followers of this blog (an extremely select group!), here it is: Ordering rhinestones, even on special at super bargain clearance prices makes my stomach do little, terrified flips. My credit card is weeping.
Eesh! I really have to start working in the summertime if I want to keep making gowns. Pricey. I also ordered some horsehair braid and some more appliques. And we are not even up to floats yet. I really love silk chiffon for floats, but ordering it online is iffy as far as colour matching goes and buying locally means $$$$$. Really want to have this one done for Grand Ball in November.
Photo of the appliques
If I ever come up with a standardized way of doing these I will post a tutorial.
They are a great way to use up small bits of fabric I can’t quite bear to toss in the recycle bin.
We all have difficult days and days when things just don’t go the way we had planned. One day is fine. Two in a row is getting a bit frustrating! I did quite a few trials of my organza with the ruffler. I had never used one before because they are rather terrifying to look at:
And because years of sewing square dance costumes in my younger days made me swear off doing anything ruffly ever again, ever. Buuuuut…here we are and ruffles are required. So think of it as a new challenge, a new start and use this wonderful piece of machinery to make it all go so easily! Not so fast…
It started out quite well. Well enough to take an in-progress photo:
That’s about 1/45th of the ruffle done. I should not have rushed to assume it would end well. After this there were the stops because the ruffler had just stopped ruffling, and the stops where it ruffled non-stop in virtually the same spot making it almost impossible to rip out. Then there were the times when it all went smoothly – for about another foot. I finally decided to switch machines and even switched ruffler feet. And it went better. Except for thread breaks! Argh! So it is mostly done, but the ruffling is uneven and the final thread break about 3 or 4 feet from the end defeated me for today.
I have a deep sense that it would have been quicker and easier to pleat this by hand. Eesh! Time to get ready to go to dance practice and I think I will not be dreaming of dancing in this dress while we practice.
I did rip out the stitching holding the crinolines on to the under dress, flipped it underneath and resewed it. If I had paid attention to how I sewed the last dress, which this blog is supposed to help me with, I would have seen that it was the way to go. Anyway, it didn’t take long and it looks ever so much better.
Then I took off for a few days for a yoga retreat where I could only dream about sewing. I got an image of a dropped sleeve, which I worked on today. Made a sample of a dropped sleeve, which I like very much. I do not however, like it for this gown, at least not yet. So that decision has to be put off until the other decorations arrive in a few weeks. I also don’t like the plain tubular sleeve attached to the skin toned mesh. And I don’t like the scarf-y embellishment things I tried, either. So not a productive day for sewing in spite have spending quite a bit of time in the sewing room. *sigh*
Here is a picture of the bodice as it is now: