Monday, November 21, 2011

{for hire} pop goes the Anda

Here's a number for the fabulous diva of vintage hair, that rocks The Leopard Lounge, Mel. A colour blocked Anda pattern variation.

Mel has many fabulous vintage '60s and '70s dresses. One problem: polyester! This cotton ensemble lets her steam up the stage (without the sweat) in her band The Lang Langs.

Being a creative type, Mel set the brief and I happily, finally delivered on it. What movie star she is!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

{diy 2} outdoor lounge cover

An outdoor lounge cover.
Because sometimes you have uninvited guests.

One metre of clear PVC (table top protector) trimmed with bias binding, all the way around. Leave long ties of bias binding at the corners for tying to the lounge. 

Shortcut: Sandwich the plastic between two pieces of bias binding (one on top, and one on the bottom) and stitch all three together with one long run of full width zig zag.

Dr Livingtsone, the black cat (who first made an appearance here) is on that lounge 9 out of 10 mornings. He approves.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

{dying to be different 2} here comes the sun

Two refashions
1. Hand dyed silk cotton top
2. Cut off jeans

Amaze balls! Even the buttons turned yellow
Thanks to iDye and iDye poly

Guessing competition: which is whiter, the cat or my legs?

...ready for summer

Saturday, October 22, 2011

{diy} notions holder

One day when I was browsing ebay I came across some listings from a haberdashery store that had closed down. I ended up with a box full of bias bindings for a steal. Now, following the advice of Male Pattern Boldness' sewing don'ts... we shouldn't hoard notions. But, ahem, for me, like threads (yes, the header of this blog is just one of my drawers of threads!), I subscribe to the notion 'freedom of design is freedom of selection'. Being creative is easy when you've got a full pack of crayons ;)

Which works well if you've got a container to put all your crayons in.  When I bought the box of notions, I hadn't thought THAT far ahead. So I commandeered a cube and ended up with this, on the left. That is as neat as it ever got. The trouble was most of the time the towers of rolls fell over and tumbled out the front and back of the cube.

There had to be a better way. After a few months of my subconscious mulling it over I came up witht this easy project you can do yourself WITHOUT ANY POWER TOOLS... I didn't want to permanently alter my dear wooden cube. So, this is a method you can confidently use knowing it can be easily removed and only leave a few tiny holes left in the wood.

Curtain wire pack
What I used:

1. Pliers
2. Curtain wire pack with hooks and eyes
3. Ruler
4. Chalk
5. Wooden cube

1. Measure and mark where the wires will be hung

2. There's all three marks

3. Press firmly to make an impression,
then screw in the eyes (or hooks)
4. This wood was a hard so I did the last few turns
with the pliers

5. Cut your wire to length - the width of your space
(minus the length of a hook and eye)
6. Screw the hooks
(or eyes - the opposite of what you screwed into the wood in 3.)
into each end of the wire

Slide on your rolls and hook them to either side... phew! Notions nightmare sorted

If you're wondering what's in the middle there... it's an old wooden bobbin I picked up at the vintage fair :)

Monday, October 17, 2011

{cloth 2} the bag

Cloth first made a mention on LeCoutureve, in the wardrobe cover makeover. They have fresh, Australian prints. Unrivalled in contemporary application. Australia flora featured in other fabrics (like quilting) range between too kitsch (think: tourist postcard and placemat) and too prissy (neat, soft 'English' arrangements that belie the 'rough as guts' appearance of the Australian bush). Cloth depicts wiry Australian flora in all its glory. They use rough linen and unruly patterns that ooze organic out of every fibre. I didn't need to check the tag, I knew this was made right here in my beloved bastard of a country.

Constructed with rough, layered seams to showcse the fabric's raw edges

this one has been gifted to Nanna Linda

Sunday, October 16, 2011

{sewcial 2} vintage fair

 Going to the vintage fair. A step-by-step guide.

Step 1. Dress vintage.
Whilst '50s style Madmen ladies and Rockabilly is all the rage...
I subscribe to the steam age Victoriana!

Step 2. Check weather for travel by umbrella.
Mary Poppins taught me herself.

3. Prepare for take-off.
Up, up and away.
~ || ~

Later, at the show....
vintage goodies!!

Sequined bags
With Pam (aka BurdaStyle's PamBox)

Jewels! Wonderful costume jewels.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

{sustainable design 4} untouched world


Untouched World is a New Zealand clothing company that embodies the principles of sustainable design. They create timeless, modern designs using high performance, sustainable, luxury fabrics. Including ecopossum™ (luxurious merino & possum knitwear), organic mountainsilk™ (fine machine washable merino), organic cotton and bamboo collections.

Something you should know about me, is that I was one of those kids that belonged to every extra-curriciular activity and club (think Rushmore). One of those was the United Nations Youth Association. Where I would draft resolutions for the mock General Assemblies in which equally pronoid teenagers solved the world problems at state and national holiday camps, ahem, conferences.

So, I was delighted to discover Untouched World, was the first clothing company in the world, to use the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainability emblem on their products. And thought you might like to check out their pieces.


Saturday, October 1, 2011

{cloth} wardrobe makeover

 Introducing Australian fabric designer and maker, cloth

My colleague Cris, stumbled upon cloth's store in Little Buckingham St, Surry Hills, by accident, earlier this year. What a great find!

Impressed by their aesthetic, they were the first thing that came to her mind when she needed a wardrobe cover MAKEOVER. I am so glad she asked me to come along to help her choose the fabric pieces. I love their fresh Australian style.

Heavy fabric, rustic prints and raw edges. Cris did all the fabric placement herself. She is even bravely overcoming her fear of birds - with this great Aussie Currawong print.

Client: Friend Cris from work
Brief: Makeover this wardrobe cover!
Materials: decorating weight linen fabric 
from Australian designer CLOTH Fabric

Saturday, August 20, 2011

{giveaway winners} missoni DIY skirt kit

Congratulations, you're all winners!

Thanks for entering Le Coutureve's giveaway. You all gave such great reasons, I went and put together more DIY skirt kits to give away. You will receive the Italian designer missoni fabric that your name appears on.

Anna Aa.;
katherine h;
Bernice; and
receive the large ups and downs - the same I used in the suddenly summer dress

Keren; and
receive the little green peaks

And you all receive a metre each of the mokuba fold-over elastic for the skirt waistband. To receive your prize, email, passiona "at" with your postal address. A cool, hand wash is all this fabric needs to keep looking its best.

Thanks to Colette at tessuti for featuring the dress and giveaway and introducing new readers to Le Coutureve. Have a lovely weekend.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

{who's your...?} pattern girl double

ASIDE: You've been waiting and it's unfair not to update you. 
The skirt kit giveaway will be finalised in the next few days. 
A special 'Hello' to new followers of Le Coutureve. 
Pash's Pattern girl doppelganger: simplicity 5229
You won't be disappointed when you see the announcement 
post ;)
Sorry for the Le Coutureve absence.
 I've been working on an outdoor 
project in the past week - more news 
to come on that.  Project Runway #6 
coming soon and more.

Have you found your pattern girl double? 

One day whilst pouring through vintage patterns online, I got a shock when I saw myself staring back at me. There she is above left. OK, so, on the right is the only available photo of me in a yellow turtle-neck. But pre-school or not, there's something going on, there.

It made me wonder: From where does the pattern cover artist take their inspiration? A girlfriend? The indelible impression of a pacing face on the street? Some are obvious - there are plenty of movie stars and celebrity inspired pattern cover girls!

Here's a Lady Di double on Neue Mode 22471. I superimposed the photo onto the right of the pattern cover. Because there really is no mistaking it!

Who have you seen in vintage pattern covers? Have you found yourself yet? Tell me which pattern! And do you agree that the photo covers spoil all this imaginative fun?!

Now, in folklore and legend seeing your doppelganger isn't always a good omen. So, maybe you can just count yourself lucky if you haven't!

And here's a test to take you out. Can you pick which one isn't Nicole Kidman?

... McCall's 2799, of course!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

{sewing with wood} steampunked monitor

one timber picture frame
a length of 19th century Passementrie
offcut from bluebird sewing machine desk
screws, timber

A definite improvement, wouldn't you say?

Monday, August 8, 2011

{Project Runway Australia Sew-a-long} Challenge 5: Grandma's Best

Project Runway 5th challenge involved no models - instead family members of the contestants! 
The brief: design their ultimate outfit
It must suit them to a tea, fit them like a glove and fulfill their every fashion fantasy
Budget $100
Time limit: eight-hours

Introducing... Nanna Linda!

A little about Linda...
1. She was wearing black before black was the new black... she insists she was the first in Sydney to wear ALL black (and I am not inclined to argue);

2. She commutes several hours every day to visit my grandfather in his nursing home, every day of the week (no days off for Linda!);

3. Has no time to launder with care nor iron her outfits;

4. She is terribly interesting, rich in character and full of stories!

 This inspired the light, gauzy fabrics she can wear on her long walks and trips on public transport all this coming summer long.

Also, I made the design so it didn't need to be ironed - but still looks smart. I achieved this in two ways. First, I tried experimental ruching on the sleeves - to make a feature of the wrinkled look. Second, I placed the grosgrain ribbons down the front and on the sleeves to give the impression of clean lines - without having to iron.

 The textured fabric in the skirt plays to her quirky ways.

Linda is happy with the fit. LOVES the colour and is absolutely tickled to have a new outfit!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

{giveaway} missoni DIY skirt kit

Win a length of the missoni fabric for a DIY skirt kit. Includes colour co-ordinated mokuba fold-over elastic, for the waist band.

To comply with Australian competition legislation, this is a 'game of skill': to be eligible to enter, be a follower of this blog (you can be one already or become one now) and comment on this blog entry with why you would like to win the kit.

Thanks for stopping by. This is competition is now closed - you can check out the winners here. And head to Le Coutureve for more giveaways.
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