Archive for the ‘Sewing’ Category

Clothing design is important, presentation is also important. I am not Japanese, but do believe in giving a gift form plays an important role. Tissue paper may be easy and is most often used by retailers to present their clothes, but I want to be more personal and find a wrapping idea that lasts longer than […]


After designing and sewing my first 1960s inspired dress, I have continued experimenting with the era. This dress which I designed, made the pattern for and sewn by hand, is worn with my fetiche Brazilian necklace brought back from Salvadore de Bahia, and a Mischa clutch made by my friend Michelle Lai. Inspired by a […]


For all its simple style, the kimono has lost status in Japan as daily apparel. Japanese women talk about kimonos with a sense of ritual and preciousness. How can something almost sacred return to daily life? I met a young Tokyo mother at the aquarium in Shinagawa taking her two daughters and a friend. In […]


Think twice before throwing away those moth-eaten wool sweaters! Cathy Dineen, an illustrator from Kilkenny, Ireland, creates sew-it-yourself illustrations in kits that include pre-cut pieces of recycled wool from sweaters and blankets. They can be sewn onto any cloth, such as a chair, curtain, etc. The illustrations are amusing, as are the instructions. Never has […]


I found the handsewn silk tunique in a friend’s colorful wardrobe. (I blogged earlier about Amanda‘s vintage finds). She bought the two piece tunique a few years ago from Portobello road. When do you think this print dates from? My guess would be the 60s. I love the vivid colors and the generous flowers which […]


To remain genuine to the 50s era, I opted for a strong floral pattern. Despite my improvised alterations over the weekend, the dress is still too large in the bust and the skirt is a little to large at the waist. I will need to revise the darts and the seams of the bodice and […]


In tackling my vintage Vogue 1954 tea party dress, I realize how large and big-chested American women were in the 50s. Above is the completed toile, a test garment of the crucial dress parts made from calico see if the pattern fits or needs alterations. Women in the 50s tended to be larger and chestier, […]


I have always been attracted to classic end 50s- 60s shapes and prints. The Mad Men show has been a godsend (!), celebrating the elegance of that era. For the first time, we don’t discover 60s fashion statically displayed, as in museums. (I do love the research and clothing displays in the V&A in London […]


I found this vintage silk dress at Cavalli e Nostri, a recommended vintage boutique in Milan. Simple long silk gown with striking hand painted leafy patterns. My guess would be end of 60s? In contrast to many vintage shops I have explored on my travels, Cavalli e Nostri offers an incredible palette of colorful prints. […]


On a recent trip to Bergamo, Italy, I came across a small boutique that sold colorful design objects – from Marimeko purses, to canary yellow Porselli ballerina shoes, to the delightful Bruno Munari children’s books. Design matters in this boutique, right up to the packaging. As I patiently waited for my findings to be wrapped […]



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