Wednesday, 11 June 2014

It's a Fishy Friday in Frinton.

With only a few days until mid summer, and school break-up around the corner my favourite seaside towns are soon going to be choked with holiday makers. So last week we took the beloved camper and ourselves down to Frinton-on-Sea, where the signs should read "Welcome to 1957".

This is Miss Marple meets Poirot middle England, where they take pride in maintaining that post war village feel, with a bit of Deco-by-the-Sea thrown in for good measure.

There are plenty of tea rooms but they only got their first pub a few years ago. They do some decent beers and samosas in the local deli though, so after a quick tour of the charity shops we packed a picnic and headed off to the green.

Vintage dress ebay. Jacket, belt and scarf and earrings all second hand. Shoes Office.

The never ending green at Frinton on Sea.
Get a load of the green - it's probably half a mile long. On a windy day it's perfect for a nice spot of kite-boarding.

 Windy happening hair...
This rose festooned white cotton dress cost £25 from ebay - cheap for a 50s dress. When it arrived it turned out to be handmade, and the armholes were too small for any adult. I had to reshape them and the facings too.

I have decided to stop buying vintage and make more clothes myself. It's hard though, I have had a couple of relapses. I love vintage clothes but I do tend to be a bit precious about wearing them. It's not good to have a wardrobe full of clothes that don't get used, but they are quite old and mostly one-offs.

I have enough vintage, for now, what I need is to do is wear it all this year so I can sell it on and buy some more next year. Anyways, for now I prefer making stuff and that takes up all the time I used to spend on buying and caring for my vintage pieces.

A thin tissue is all that is protecting my vintage frock from greasy spills.

Felstar Lightburst, bitter and refreshing, highly recommended with fish and chips.

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

Pink and green should always be seen.

Following my tasteful cool blue post, here's some hot pink and acid green - especially fitting for a nice summer dress.

Simplicity 5124 shirtdress
Vintage shirt dress Simplicity 5124 

I like vintage prints but ditzy florals are not usually my thing. My friend spotted these two prints in our local fabric shop, and it was love at first sight. The dotty fabric is for contrasting collar, cuffs and belt the other fabric is for the main body. I am planning lurid green button holes. I don't want anyone thinking this is not a handmade dress.

My couture class has recently covered collars. I have quite big issues with collars. Everyone has one area of sewing that they dread tackling and collars are, or rather were, mine.

Above are examples one done before the class and one after. I am sure you can spot the difference...

Right BEFORE - Absolutely shocking. It's horrible and that sludge green is not helping.

Left - happily ever AFTER!  Clean, crisp and properly pointy shaped. Although I can't work out which side the interfacing should be on: my teacher says top, some books say bottom, I just read something on a website that said you can do it either way or both! Anyway I will stick with putting it on the top, use good quality stuff and just hope it doesn't go lumpy in the wash.

My lovely teacher Amy studied menswear, which is quite unusual. Her techniques for collars are quite unusual too. A very mysterious, meticulous process and one she partly made up herself. I wrote it all down and tried it at home where I could concentrate properly, it was fiddly but it all worked.

I feel I have suddenly been allowed into the magic circle of people who can make things properly. I have learned so much on this course and we are only half way through.