Saturday, March 22, 2014

Burda Style 04/2014

 To purchase, go to

All Styles at a Glance

Line Drawings

Two classic silhouettes rolled into one. 
jumpsuit #107A-White 4-ply silk

Love the stylish neckline.  Add a belt to cinch in the waistline.

Cropped blouse and pants-on trend!
blouse #115-Ivory Basketweave

Pretty dress for the upcoming Easter Holiday.
dress #124-Seeing Dots

Plus Size
Ready for work!
pants #134A- Black/White Pinstripe

I'll take a meeting now!
knit top #136-Ladders

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Trending...How to Wear the Nautical Look

Mix-up Sweater Knit, Navy Cotton Stretch Sateen, Navy/Cream Stripe Knit, Cream Stretch Sateen, Maritime, Navy Tweed
Ahoy Mates!  Every year around this time, if you're like me, then you're planning a trip somewhere with aquamarine water, tons of water sports activities, spas and fresh mojitos.  I'm sure your calendar is filling up as we speak.  Whether it's a seven-day cruise to the Bahamas or a weekend at Lake Travis in Austin, a swimsuit is not all you need.  There are plenty of options to choose from when packing for a summer get-away.  Or if you want to stay trendy and feel like you're on vacation while working the 9-to-5, then try piecing together nautical looks this season.  Yes, you are right, pull out your blue and white stripes, linen staples, boat shoes, straw hats and all of your gold jewelry.  Nautical wear is effortless and is a classic trend that's for any age and will look great on any body type.

Keep in mind these tips when pulling off the nautical look.  Worried about your mid section?  No problem, try wearing a loose fitting striped shirt that stops at the hip paired with white or red capris (try Burda Style 3/2014 #115) for a more slimming look.  

Or wear a high waist dress and add a belt to tighten the waistline. Tired of the classic red, white and blue color? Be sure to add orange, green or yellow to the nautical look to insert charisma and charm.  Always, always accessorize.  Make sure you glam up your look with lots of gold bangles, anchor pendants and bracelets, chain necklaces and earrings.  Compare your wardrobe to these looks and stay on trend!

Red Cotton Stretch Sateen
White on White Stripe

Butterick 6026
    red stretch cropped pants,


                            Navy Tweed                                     Printed Cropped pants,
                                   Orange Belt,        T-strapped open toe heel,

Vogue 1298

Navy/Cream Seersucker

BCBGMAXAZRIA ankle strapped silver sandal,
Tan leather ankle-strapped sandal,

Friday, March 14, 2014

Oui, Oui, French Vanilla!

Given the choice of chocolate or vanilla I will always go for the chocolate but when I saw this deliciously sweet boucle, aptly named French Vanilla (*now sold out) , I knew I had to take a detour.

Knowing that I wanted to try a more traditional French jacket pattern this time I choose Vogue 7975.

The Academy Awards were approaching and everywhere I looked I saw Cate Blanchett's Chanel cardigan for Blue Jasmine.

Then it hit me!  Why not try my hand at a black blanket stitch for my trim?   I bought two skeins of Debbie Bliss merino wool, one each of cream and black.

The blanket stitch is easy.  Making a uniform stitch in length and spacing is NOT easy.  I needed a template of some sort to stitch by and so (and this tip is totally not couture) I made a line of zigzag stitches by machine with a thread a little darker than my boucle.  Using the peaks and valleys made the uniformity of stitches so much easier.

Upon magnification of the pictures of Cate's jacket I could tell that there was a cream colored "finishing stitch" at the end of what I call the legs.  I put on my needlepoint hat, grabbed a big needle and the cream Debbie Bliss and did a Split Gobelin stitch along the outer edge of the blanket stitching.  

I recently purchased Claire Shaeffer's new release of "The Couture Cardigan Jacket: Sewing Secrets from a Chanel Collector".  She mentions that one of the hallmarks of a true couture French jacket is the sag of the pockets since they have no interfacing.  Some even cut the top of the pocket with a curve to achieve this look.  Mine are curving a little on their own!

I didn't make any pattern alterations except the neckline as noted above, something I regret a bit now.  I was pleasantly surprised with the fit of this jacket since many I've seen from this pattern seam boxy, but it has nice shaping at the waist.

I'm very pleased with my second French jacket but I don't believe I will tackle such time consuming trim on the next one I make.  

Dorcas, this is another beautiful Chanel styled jacket in your ever-growing collection (see her 1st jacket here).  You can keep up with Dorcas's journey into couture on her blog!

*This fabric is currently sold out-if you are interested in special ordering this fabric you can contact me at