Monday, January 3, 2011

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Revolutionary Uplift

Scottie: What's this doohickey?
Midge: It's a brassiere! You know about those things, you're a big boy now.
Scottie: I've never run across one like that.
Midge: It's brand new. Revolutionary up-lift: No shoulder straps, no back straps, but it does everything a brassiere should do. Works on the principle of the cantilevered bridge.
Scottie: It does?
Midge: An aircraft engineer down the peninsula designed it; he worked it out in his spare time.
Scottie: Kind of a hobby, a do-it-yourself kind of thing!

Ah, yes. The Brassiere. A mysterious doohickey that has for many decades relied on rocket science for its function and design.

This is a complete bra making kit which includes a textbook, a pattern and materials for 2 bras from Bra Makers Supply in Ontario Canada.
They sell all kinds of books and patterns as well as a full range of fabrics and trims and all the assorted notions you will need for brassiere and lingerie making.

I chose a classic full band bra pattern (you may also chose a partial band pattern) and pink for the color of my kit (white, black, brown and 2 shades of beige being the other choices). The full band style allows me to use or not use underwires and I like that. The pink on the other hand, I don't really like. I didn't want to pick black because it can be hard to see what you are doing on black some times and beige/nude is just boring. But this pink is the exact shade of pink that makes me vomit uncontrollably.It looks ok in the above picture but it is bright cotton candy pink! Good thing this is my first attempt and I will inevitably screw it up (or puke on it :)

It may not have been apparent so much on this blog but I am FASCINATED by underwear. I have been since I started making my own clothes and being interested in fashion in general. In other words consider the can of lingerie open and expect to see more about it.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

the lace museum, Calais

My friend Ksenia recently went to the north of France and visited the lace museum in Calais. She posted the following pictures on facebook with this message:

this is the lace museum at Calais, the north of France, where lace manufacturing has been traditional 4 centuries, and in the end - vintage models of dresses and underwear of couturiers that now are legends

I thought I would share them with you since they are so beautiful.

Lace as you please (1852-1870)
Industrial progress and the expansion of colonial possessions made the Second Empire a period of prosperity. The bourgeoisie, growing fast, wanted to show off its social and economic success. Feminine dress became the visible symbol of masculine success. Lace found price of place on dresses, which gradually increased in size, as well as on the multitude of accessories that propriety recommended using.

I love the merriwidow hiding on the left.

Check out this link for an english article about the museum that includes some history of lace making in Calais (it was actually smuggled in by lacemakers from Nottingham, England) and some images of some very nice lingerie!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Shana Tova

or in other words, Happy New Year! I like the idea of the year starting in the fall. It is a time ripe with new beginnings as well as a time of letting go of things and putting summer's bounty to bed. Unfortunately, this time of year tends to be a major clusterfuck for me. This year is no different! I left you all with a half-assed post about kittens in space with high hopes of returning from Nashville last week being inspired and to hit the ground running. I was seriously inspired and it was one of the best vacations I have had but hitting the ground running has never been my forte. I tend to trip and roll for awhile before I can even get up. So the purpose of this post is to give you a little heads up about a few things, kind of a table of contents, in the hopes that you will help stick to what I have laid out.

News and Notes

-You can "Like" Dart and Hem on Facebook
I have been setting this up for awhile and meant to tell you like a month ago. I wasn't sure about it at first but I think it is a great way to share bits and bobs along the way. Some inspiration, some discussions, etc... Check it out in the sidebar

-This year I will be making serious effort towards grad school. I may have mentioned grad school before, and I did get some lovely advice from some other bloggers about it. The gauntlet has been thrown. I am going.

Upcoming post topics

-A note about Project Phoenix

-Catch up on some completed projects

-oh, hey! The Sketchbook Project

-I will be taking a draping class starting later this month! WOOT!

-My current project, a 1950's clutch coat for my aunt

-The Hepburn Hepburn Project and more projects I should not be participating in

aaaaannnnnnddd...I think that is good for now! See you soon, cross my heart and kiss my elbow!

Ps. Did you know that wearing garters all the time can give you blisters on your thighs? And to avoid having the garter show through a tight aka wiggle skirt you should put the garters on backwards? And while Joan Collins was very happy when the girdle wearing days ended she thinks the fashion of that time was waaay sexier than fashion today. I happen to agree.

That's all.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Kittens in Space

I saw this and thought it was the greatest thing I had ever seen since the video of the kittens in the shoe box. And I think you should at least be entertained while I am on a bit of hiatus. I have been very busy this last week or two and I am heading to Nashville over the weekend to meet up with Gertie (who has an awesome book deal!) and the gang to check out some vintage couture. I am busting with news to share though so as long as my computer doesn't crap out on me many posts and pictures and hitting the ground running when i get back!

Sunday, August 8, 2010


I apologize for my bipolar way of posting. I was all gung ho to post all the time and have finished a couple items I'd like to share and have some other things I'd like to share but I had to step away. My reasons being logistical (my computer is a cranky old bitch), seasonal (the summer always seems to explode but I feel this year was way over the top in requests of my time being spent in places other than the one I want to be in) and emotional (I hit a bit of burn out, re-gathered my strength and whipped some stuff out then hit burn out again). I feel like I am running on fumes but wanted to check in because keeping up this blog IS something I care about doing and want to keep up. I have uploaded a bunch of my pictures and hope to have a few posts for you in the near future but I have some projects that need some serious attention (like my sketchbook and my aunt's coat) and more steady blogging will most likely pick up in the fall.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Ben Backstay was our bo'sun...

and I am a very merry girl!
Remember this fabric?

It is now a sailor skirt. I loved HH's suggestion of a sailor dress but I had 4 one yard pieces of this fabric and wasn't sure if I could weasel a dress out of it. I also don't know if it is a color I want near my face. So I compromised.

I used Built By Wendy's A line skirt pattern from Sew U as my base and the Sailor in Bermuda tutorial on BurdaStyle. I rotated the darts on the skirt front out into the waistline. Not sure if that is how I was supposed to do it but that is what I did so I could put in the sailor front. It wasn't all that difficult but it did require some thought as there are a few different pieces and the tutorial just gives you the basic pattern shapes and no instruction as to how to put them all together. You wind up with a good amount of layers in the side seams. I also did not line this skirt (sorry, mom) as I wanted it to be a summer skirt and I was dealing with enough pattern pieces already. I also hate inserting linings. I think I may try out the vintage route and not line my garments but make myself a little trousseau of slips to wear under it all. Easier sewing all around, n'est-ce pas?
An attempt at a close up for more detail

I was really surprised at how well Berteau behaved for the photos. He looks good in all the pictures. I on the other hand look only so so. On the walk back to the house he decided to he wanted to be a pin up model.

This is actually kind of the image I see in my head every time I walk him. Except there is more wrappage of the leash, more falling over, and lots more skirt going up.

and then he sat on my foot. He likes doing this for some reason.

When I got home I decided this outfit needed some jewelry and remembered that I had this fish necklace.

I had a great idea for the image I wanted but trying to take pictures of your self that involve close ups and a more specific idea don't really work.

This is more of what I had in mind except with the fish being the only thing in focus and everything else blurred out. Instead I just got a picture of my cleavage. I will be the art director and model if someone else could be the photographer. Luckily I know lots of photographers. Unfortunately that would involve even less regular blogging on my part. Oh well! off to make friends with my tripod!