In my last post I was working on skirt designs, and during my week off I began thinking of ways I could make the skirt have more drape and more folds in its body.
When I was confident that I figured out the best way to do it, I began working on the patterns and I made a toile of the skirt.
The Final Skirt
The skirt toile worked out exactly how I expected and I am over the moon with this design! Although the toile is made in calico, which is slightly heavy, it still has great movement!
Now that I have my final skirt design it is time to start finishing up the top half so I can finally set aside the first outfit.
I really liked the idea of this top (above) as part of the first outfit, so I decided to toile it in 100% cotton, which is lighter than the calico.
The first problem I encountered is the fact that the attached pieces are too heavy for the neckline to hold, but this might fix itself once a facing is added to the inside of the top.
When I paired the top with the skirt, I realised I didn’t like the two together. I feel like a more simple and fitted top would work better with this skirt, simply because the skirt already has so much going on!
I decided to take a different approach this time when designing the top. I cut out and sewed up 2 half bodice tops in calico.
Next I took a marker and began to draw out new necklines and arm holes. I tried to focus on making a wavy neckline and arm hole to add a small bit of character to the plain top without over doing it.
When I cut out around the marker, I decided I didn’t like the style as it just looked messy. I then took the second half of the top as started the process again.
This time I made the waves wider and less intense, I also added a low-cut back.
This one worked out a little better, I want to make a few changes to it but I will do this when I start making a pattern for the top.
I drew up a quick pattern for the top and made the small changes. I decided to make the top in 100% cotton instead of the calico. The reason for this is because I was planning on making the top out of a silk fabric which is much lighter than calico.
The top turned out OK, but again I have found small areas that I am not happy with and would like to change. For example the armhole is a bit big and is slightly revealing. I then paired the top and skirt together.
Paired together they look quite nice, I tucked the top into the skirt because it was too long over the skirt. The top would need to be taken in a good bit to reduce the bulk in the waist. I still feel more pushed towards making a fitted bodice that can be worn inside the waist band of the skirt without added bulk.
I began some design sketches of more fitted tops, some of the designs are quite interesting and I will definitely have to toile them. As I mentioned above I was planning on making the top in a silk fabric, but if it is going to be a fitted bodice it will need to be something a bit more stiff.
Something I used to love doing was surface detail by manipulating fabric or combining fabric with other unusual materials. I decided I wanted to bring this into my collection because it is something I love doing, so I began by creating fabric samples with raised surfaces.
These samples were created using yarn and a bonding material to hold the layers together. The sample above was inspired by the surface of the Titanic museum building, which you can see in the image below. Once it was all glued together I then sewed along the sides of the risen material.
When the sample was done I pinned it to the mannequin along with the skirt to get an idea what the two would look like together.
I am very happy with the two together and I think now is the time to start toiling the bodice and then re-toiling it with the risen surface! This will be in Part 10.
During the last two weeks my new fabric swatches arrived! Honestly there is nothing like getting new fabric to play with!
I sat down and started going through all the ones I ordered. I then picked out the ones I liked the most. I began placing them together to see if the colours paired well.
After a bit of messing around, chopping and changing the different fabrics and shades, I finally have a solid colour story for my collection! Although this is my finished colour story, some fabrics may not even get used and others may be introduced, as I have said before nothing is ever finished or final!
This week I will be focusing on finishing the first outfit as I have definitely spent too much time on it. Once the first is out of the way the rest seem to flow nicely!
I will have to start a lot of design sketching to get my starting points for the other outfits. I will then be sampling again, but now I have some solid samples which will be worked into some of the other outfits to create a link and to keep the collection pieces closely related to each other!
Thank you for reading