Rain skirt, Washday Blouse, 2013
Necklace, 2007
Photography by Robert Lucy
Had attempted to squeeze almost too much into a busy morning. When Robert Lucy arrived to photograph I apologized for having to dash to the laudromat to pick up laundry from the dryer. The good spirited Mr. Lucy suggested he'd come along for the walk and take photographs.

In college a friend who loved wearing jeans and a tee periodically arrived in the cafeteria for lunch dressed in a skirt and blouse. The explanation was always, "laundry day". 

Rain skirt and...Washday Blouse.

Velvet and Denim: Sounds Like a Country Song

(Velvet Blouse, Denim Skirt: 
Cotton/Rayon, 2011)

Velvet is delicious--but oh, what a diva to sew. Every stitch shows.

The pin tucks on the yoke reflect light. (In the photograph even the crest of the fold at the waist is illuminated.) Gathering the sleeves at the wrist worked well in the lace version, however, the velvet drapes differently and here a minimal hem works better.

Snow has been a constant presence for two months, melting partially on warmer days, becoming ice encrusted as the freeze returns. A just-above-the-knee length skirt manages to avoid the inevitable splattering slush. Ah, winter! (Layers worn underneath: homemade long johns, knickers, silk slip!) 

It's such a pleasure to wear everything made by my own hands.

Chilly Night! Layers Upon Layers

(Kilt & Lace Blouse: Cotton, 2011)
Went to a lecture at the Museum of Art & Design with Robyn and Sven. It was a chilly night. Wore kilt-style skirt (previously made in a lighter weight fabric this summer). The lace blouse makes its appearance! (Underneath: two homemade camisoles and homemade long underwear.) Was the most official blog photo session ever--Robyn coached, Sven took the photo. Was lovely!

Tend to draft a pattern then make a couple versions of the same garment. It helps with tweaking the pattern and solidifying the design.

Wrap-around Skirt

(Skirt: cotton with metal hardware, 2010)
The skirt has multiple panels sewn together then gathered. The adjustable wide band at the waist (like a weightlifter's belt) feels wonderful. It is strengthening! The pattern was drafted with a large hem allowance. Seeing the photograph it is evident that shortening the skirt would be better given the fullness of the design (and my height)!  Back to the machine.
(Waistband detail)

Flamenco Skirt, the Flannel Version

Flamenco Skirt: Cotton, Tulle, 2010
The first attempt to draft a pattern for this skirt was a couple months ago. It was wearable, yet the resulting skirt was less flow-y than intended. Last week got down to business, drafting another pattern, sewing a muslin, making corrections to the pattern and crafting a summer-weight version of the skirt. Additional fine turning of the pattern meant lots of pencil sharpening and taping this week before cutting and sewing the flannel version. 
The pattern has three panels (a back, front and side) with six pattern pieces total for three layers of tiers. The lowest tier is flannel (cut separately from the upper panels). The next tier in this version is cut from knit fabric with a layer of black tulle is overlaying it.  (In the photograph the tulle looks almost like a blur.) The design has essentially three different views--the side view with cascading flounces, the front with a diagonal flounce and a longer panel in back giving the illusion of an ankle length skirt.
The blouse is a repurposed linen sheet. Am embracing the wrinkled aesthetic!
front view

Blue Batiste Skirt

Amy and I went to Prospect Park yesterday where the cherry blossoms are in full bloom. There were wedding parties posing for photographs,  parents photographing their children and of course flowers and trees were photographed with abandon. The ground was dappled with sunlight. It was joyous.

I photographed Amy by a lavish sea of tulips--yellow, red, crimson all bright and seemingly happy. As I stood on the petal strewn lawn Amy took this photograph.

I had finished the cotton batiste skirt that afternoon. It has a zipper closure in the back, sewn  in place by hand because machine stitches lay too heavily on the breeze-like batiste. A discarded linen sheet was made into this blouse, a left-over piece of cloth became a sash. (How comfortable it is to wear a sash. The quasi-weightlifter's belt has merit outside of the gym.) The hat, made with a deep crown, initially seemed too big. Having discovered it is possible to put my hair up under the hat it has now become a favorite. Hats were the first step in making a completely homemade wardrobe.