thematerialgirl — Wed, 05/01/2013 - 15:46
thematerialgirl — Thu, 11/15/2012 - 11:59
Is it really over a month since my last past about the Pattern Magic Challenge? It's been a month a frustration, work and finally defeat!
I definitely bit off more than I could sew when I fell in love with the Disappearing Scarf from Pattern Magic 2. The drafting went well and I quickly ended up with the pattern pieces I needed - then I made an idiotic fabric choice. I thought it would look lovely in this synthetic shiny fabric I've had for ages - shimmery and etherial. Ha!
It was a nightmare from the moment I stuck the first pin into it. It puckered, it pulled, it became something I dreaded even catching sight of. And, then the sewing. Oh, the sewing. It was like a jigsaw - I had the pieces, I had the picture of what it should like at the end. I just had no idea of how to get there.
So with no further ado - I present, the shiny mess of the Disappearing Scarf...
The one good thing I can take from it was that it did actually fit...
This was what I had at 10 am on the morning of the Challenge deadline. I really didn't want to just send this mess (believe me it looks much, much worse in real life than in the photos!). So, I quickly flicked through Pattern Magic 3 to find "The magic is in the wearing".
This was my fabric at 10:45...
And this was me at 11:10 the same morning!
And at 11:15...
And at 11:20
I am in love with this! Pattern Magic all is forgiven.
thematerialgirl — Wed, 10/03/2012 - 11:46
How exciting is this?! Mariana over at Sew 2 Pro (http://www.sew2pro.com/pattern-magic-challenge/) is running a Pattern Magic challenge.
The idea is to draft and make an item of clothing for showing off by November 10th.
My sewing mojo has been missing in action recently and this is just the sort of thing I need to get the creative juices flowing again. After my two courses at Morley college based on the books, I have made only one wearable item from the books - and that is the simplest item in there - the twist top (http://www.thematerialgirl.co.uk/pattern-magic-twist-top). Now is the time to get working on some new ones.
My problem is what to make. I'm on another course at Morley this weekend based on the use of interfaces etc. in tailored jackets - could I blend the two learning experiences into one and make a jacket based on the designs?
My thoughts are that the stole neck or the disappearing scarf from Pattern Magic 2 could be incorporated into a jacket.
But this looks pretty difficult and probably beyond my skills to produce in a month.
Another option is a party dress - Xmas is coming fast and I'll want something nice for my works do. Perhaps the cowl nech or the tie flipover?
Mind you, if all else fails - perhaps the most basic pattern from Pattern Magic 3 will be my only option to do in time!
thematerialgirl — Thu, 02/16/2012 - 13:44
This is going to be the first of two posts about the Creative Pattern Cutting course I did at Morley College last weekend. This was the second course I have done on both this subject and at the College - and so far I can readily recommend it.
The course is based on Tomoko Nakamichi's Pattern Magic 2 - the previous course was on the first book.
Over the two days I managed to make up four of the patterns with varying results. I attempted the "Like a jungle", "Fundamentals", "Vanishing Pocket" and the Cowl neck. As before the course is really about drafting up patterns using the books as guidance - so the aim of the weekend was not to have wearable garments at the end. That said, this time I did make up muslins of each item.
Like a jungle
The aim of this exercise is to create a multi-stranded bodice which removes the need for any darts.
So the basic bodice is split into sections - each of which the will make up a strand. One thing to remember is that no matter how spaced the strands get in the centre, they have to match at the edges where they will be reattached to each other to make up the bodice shape.
I used a bodice front to make up the sections and it does give an interesting - if slightly drafty - effect.
You'd have to be fairly brave to wear it in this manifestation!
One of the other women on the course had a much better idea - do the same thing to the back of a top:
As you can see, it becomes instantly more wearable. I can imagine this as both the back of an elaborate gown (think Oscar night) - but it could also be the back of a casual summer tunic.
Another lovely feature for the back was the cowl. To be honest this wasn't the most arduous of exercises but I want to draft one as they are just so useful. I'm a sucker for anything with a cowl so I knew it was a pattern I would reuse.
For this style the original back bodice is simply elongated across the centre and then the top is chopped off.
This is my version in calico - not the drapiest of fabrics so it looks little more like a gnomes hood than an elegant evening dress. But then again I'm probably more closely related to a gnome than to a film star!
thematerialgirl — Mon, 02/13/2012 - 20:27
This week is Pattern Magic week here at the Material Girl (I wish every week was). Over the weekend I have been on the second of the Creative Pattern courses at Morley college. I loved the first one which was split over two Saturdays - Day one and Day two. If anything this second course (based on the book Pattern Magic 2) was even better.
However, I'm going to keep you at the edge of your seats and leave that post until tomorrow - basically I haven't had time to edit my photos yet! However a fantastic account of the weekend can be found on my fellow attendee, Melissa's blog - www.fehrtrade.com/article/570/the-pattern-magic-2-course-at-morley-college
So, today, I'm going to hit you with a follow up from the work I did on the first course.
One of the items I loved the look of in the first book was the twist top which is rendered in a lovely looking brown jersey. The basic block is given for an "average" size which you then manipulate. After some reworking to make it this woman's average size I was ready to twist the basic pattern.
The strange corrugation you see is because I'm using packing polystyrene foam. I have rolls of the stuff left over from a house move that didn't happen and it was the only thing wide enough fo the job in hand.
Once you have made you manipulations, you cut out two of the same shape and stick them together (cutting of one arm and putting it one the other side)
After that it's a simple case of cutting out your one pattern piece and sewing the sides together.
I used a ribbed, thick (ooh er) jersey, which was probably a bit too stiff for the project (ok, enough double entendres for one sentence) - however, I'm really pleased with the result even if it looks nothing like the picture in the book.
There's really a bit too much material around the shoulders, but as the fabric is stiff it gives a really nice exaggerated effect. Also, the fabric does like staying in its twist and tends to travel around my midriff.
Rightio, that's your lot for today - more Magic soon.
thematerialgirl — Fri, 12/09/2011 - 11:46
Day 2 (the final day) of the Creative Pattern course saw even more creativity from the Pattern Magic books.
The course was very much based on creating your own patterns from the drafting instructions given in the book. Most of the time it was like a technical drawing class rather than a sewing class – but these outfits are what the fashion editors would call “architectural” so you have to concentrate on the patterns – the sewing is then the easy bit.
Working on from last week’s class I drafted the sleeve pattern – nothing weird and wacky on this but good basic pattern drafting practice.
This was followed by an attempt at the crossover front top – I’ve always liked this pattern in the book.
Here’s how it looks on paper halfway through the process – it’s a real leap of faith that it is going to turn into anything resembling clothes!
And here is it made up in muslin. I only did the front so it’s just pinned to my top – but I think you can definitely make out the beginnings of a wearable item.
I can really recommend this class - it has really transformed the books for me. Previously, even though I had read through them several times, I just didn’t “get” it. Now I feel I have the confidence to attempt any of designs – no matter how complicated.
The instructor – Mons (Monisola Omotoso) was great. A wonderfully experienced designer and pattern cutter who has had her own lines selling to the likes of Paul Smith. She really got me to see the “science” of the drafting. She is running another weekend class in February 2012 at Morley College. If you live in London and have always wanted to attempt these books, I would say BOOK NOW!
thematerialgirl — Tue, 11/22/2011 - 14:22
What a fab weekend! Saturday saw the first day (of two) of a course I am doing at Morley College, near Waterloo in South London. The course is Creative Pattern Cutting and is based on the Pattern Magic book - the first one.
I love this book - and have it in both Japanese and English (not for completest reasons - I just bought the Japanese one before the English was available). That said, I have not made anything out of the books as they just seemed a bit too complicated - yes, even in English. They are not like the other Japanese pattern books I use - there is not Burda-style pattern pull-out. You are meant to draft your own patterns.
The course so far is great - I have drafted out two of the patterns from the book - but more importantly, I have started to understand the terms needed within the book and so I should be able to cope a little better at home with them.
My only small criticism would be the class size (12) and the class ability range. We started the lesson going around the table and talking about our experience and I got nervous when a number of the people there were semi-professional. However, the reality was very different and I found some of the people on the course unbelievably slow - a pain when everyone needs to move ahead together. That said, the course is an amazing £48 for the two days including all our materials (although not the book of course!).
These are the two projects I've gone through the process for -
Bamboo shoot front top
Stage 1 - the unaltered front bodice
Stage 2 - Adding the new cutting lines
I've managed to miss a photo of the pattern cut out and spread to recreate the new pattern.
My finished pattern
The Deppari Shirt
I'm afraid I was getting into this so much I forgot to take any photos as I was going along!
My next step is to make these up in muslin - so I will post more photos then. I have another day on the course on Saturday coming - but I will try to use that to draft out more of the patterns to get more practice on that rather than sewing up the designs in fabrci - I can do that at home.
They are running a follow-up to the course in February - I'm already signed up!