Tag Archives: sewing room

Decrystalization

5 Dec

Figuring out how to get rhinestones off an old gown is an interesting challenge.  There don’t seem to be any instructions anywhere on how to remove jewel glue and no ideas even for a solvent that would work.  The only person I knew who had tried to de-jewel a gown had soaked pieces of the dress in water and laboriously picked them off.  Sounds too hard to me!

But as I slowly cut the Disney Princess into strips of stones, I noticed that small stones would almost fall off if the fabric was pulled tightly. It only works well for stones under 20 ss. Larger ones will come off, but the foil backing almost always pulls away.  Fine if you want clear stones, but keeping the AB effect is nice.

So here is the strip of fabric with small stones:

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Give the strip a bit of stretch:

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And a bit more:

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And more:

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Be careful not to break it (but sometimes it will anyway):

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If you are lucky, the stones will just pop right off the fabric:

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But even if they don’t, you can now run a thumbnail along the strip and the rest will tumble off.

I did this in front of the TV with the strips in a giant plastic mixing bowl to catch the stones.  They do tend to fly around, so the bowl worked well as a catching device. Perfect for watching ballroom videos on YouTube.  I recommend some Strictly Come Dancing – the UK version (original) of Dancing With the Stars.

The process with larger stones will be coming along soon.

A box of linen thread

18 Jul

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Who doesn’t need a 12 spool box of No. 35, 3 cord white Barbours Linen thread?  They are all intact so I couldn’t test it to see if it is even useable.  It is just so gosh-darned cool looking!

Lovely little dressform

16 Jul

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Such a little cutie, just sitting in the thrift shop and only $5.  It is a Perfect Fit Ajust-o-matic dress form made of heavy card stock.  If you zoom in you can see the little slots where you adjust for the Perfect Fit!

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Back view.  This lady was petite, but had a long waist and teeny, tiny hips.

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I desperately wanted to bring her home with me, but just could not justify the purchase.  Brilliant concept though, as it could have been flat packed, assembled by the owner and has quite a lot of adjustability.

My rule for such purchases is that if it is still there the next time I go in, I can buy it.  I somehow doubt she will still be there the next time I go a-thrifting, but you never know.

A Google search turned up an ad/article about the Adjust-o-matic.  Read all about her here.

Two birds

14 Jul

I have been playing with McCalls 6571 for loose fitting pants for ballroom practice.  I made a test pair, a working pair that I made from wicking fabric and I LOVE them.  They are nice and cool and don’t look too horrible with the black oxford style practice shoes I usually wear.

But I wanted something dressier, yet not quite as dressy as this skirt and top. A friend had given me a chunk of slightly stretchy pinstripe that I thought would look great, but it didn’t stretch anywhere nearly enough.  Hmmmm….  So I cut out the pattern with 2 1/2″ margins all the way around (except length) and made up a muslin out of an old sheet.  It kinda fit!  So I made up the pants, took them in a bit along the sides, which effectively made a side seam and was quite sure I would have to put a zipper in the back.  Nice surprise – they slid on over my hips but weren’t too wide at the waist.  a nice wide elastic in the waistband made a nice fit all around.  Yay!

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The magenta top and chain belt are bargains from Ross:-) I asked on Pattern Review about how to wear the belt over the top and have found through just wearing it around the house that it just stays put and looks pretty good.

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And yes, I know the shoes are undone.

Making a belt

24 Mar

It seems that I build in a new challenge for myself with each gown and this one is the belt.  This is a pretty much involuntary thing and typically I arrive at a place or two where I wonder why on earth I decided I needed this special element in the gown, but there you go.  Why do simple?

Here is the beginning of the belt.  Naturally, there were great intentions of more photos through the process that didn’t get taken. I get a little cranky with bloggers who do this, but this time I did figure out a couple of  reasons why this happens.  Either the thrill of having a project go well or the intensity of focus during a tricky part of the process seem to keep the “take pictures for the blog” portion of the brain turned off.

Anyway, here it is – three pieces of heavy power mesh, 5 pieces of poly boning sewn in place.

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A closer look.  The boning is sewn into one layer, which will be on the body side of the belt.  Plastic sew in snaps will be in the front panel and nice flat purse magnets will hold the back of the belt more or less in place.  I hope.

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Notion inspiration. The thread tree.

3 Mar

The thread tree.  Basic cheapy from the fabric store.  Plastic and wobbly, but does the job.

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It has holes for screwing it onto the sewing table, but as I move machines and things around all the time, I was not interested in that.  Plus, it would put holes in my lovely Freecycle computer desk!  Though about mounting it on a board, but that never happened.

But today I saw this:

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Little cup full of computer screws, which we have by the billion around here.  Since there are no small kids here anymore, they are a bit like our Lego.  Step on one of these little beauties and it will make a big impression.  Get it?  Anyway, I was about to dump the works into a container to make yet another pattern weight, which I don’t need, when I thought of the thread tree;

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Took it apart.

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Flipped the base over.

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Filled it with screws, removing all the light plastic whatsits for max. weight.  Traced the outline onto a plastic yogurt container lid.

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Glue gunned it in place.

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Reassembled the tree.  I know glue gun glue doesn’t bond perfectly with plastic, but it feels pretty firm so far.  I can always add some tape around the edges for security.  Worst case scenario, I have a bunch of screws to pick up one day.  In the meantime, the tree stands firmly and doesn’t rattle around!

 

 

Time for a couple of photos

2 Mar

New dress finally!  Began last June  I think, and stuck after the initial construction got done.  This is roughly the idea for now.

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Added a belt to get the idea of how it would look and I like the black!  This is actually two stretchy elastic belts from the 80’s that have been sitting in that drawer – you know, the one with all that weird stuff?

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A lot of work to go, but nice to have the basic idea in place.

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