After you have made a garment, you want to show it to the outside world. Taking pictures for your Social Media, maybe for an online store or just for yourself. But how do you photograph your clothes in the best way? Many ways are passing by on the Internet.
We have some give tips and tricks for you!
Flat lay pictures:
Flat-lay pictures are photos of clothing or products which are lying flat on a table or on the floor. You will look up from above. This way of photographing clothes has great advantages because you can arrange the clothes exactly as you want. Various tutorials can be found on YouTube on how to do this best.
A disadvantage is the fact you do not see the clothes 'dressed'. It does not give a clear picture of the shape and as a viewer you may have to imagine how it will look in real life. The clothing is probably arranged in a way: making the sleeves appear narrower, creating a waist that is not there or making the entire garment look better than it actually is.
One of the reasons for taking flat-lay pictures is often the fact people don't want to be shown in the picture, for several reasons. For example because of privacy or because of the size of the garment. This way of presenting is also often popular because the photos are styled and look great.
Tip: add items that emphasize the clothing style to the pictures. A chic perfume bottle, a nice cup of coffee or a serious book. Jewelry or accessories. Styling the clothes in this way makes the photo more attractive for the viewers.
Detail photos are ideal to show if the garment has really specific or intricate details. This is especially important for seamstresses. Examples: sleeve ends, collars, slits or interesting buttons and pleats. Of course, the photos do not show the entire garment, but they are interesting to show to the outside world.
'The devil is in the detail'
Mannequin-photos are pictures taken by using the sewing mannequin or a shop window mannequin. That sounds easier than it is. It is not easy to make a good mannequin-photo. See photo above: the mannequin is not the right size and because of this, the jacket hangs limply on all sides and the jacket looks plump. A sewing doll has to be a bit correct in size.
You can adjust most sewing mannequins yourself, but a shop window mannequin often only has one size. On clothing websites, the clothes are often pinned and deformed until it fits nicely on the mannequin. That makes sense (see photo above) but not really the goal for a seamstress. After all, you want to show how the jacket turned out and without 'shaping' it for the photo.
If the details are invisible: zoom in and take extra photos! And of course: make sure you have a mannequin that is correct in terms of dimensions/sizes.
Clothing presentation on a person made of flesh and blood:
If you prefer not to choose a sewing of shop window mannequin but want to show the clothing yourself (or on another), make sure you look your best. Ask the amateur photographer to take the photos from a favorable angle; at a distance, not too close and preferably at sitting height. In this way it will not look like you are having tiny legs and the clothes will look better in proportion. You can still crop in height or width.
Take several photos and move around slowly. You can later choose the most favorable photo on which the clothes are the best (and you!) Complicated poses such as professional models often are doing is not necessary and might look a little bit 'over-done'.
A professional photo shoot:
You might consider to book a professional photographer for a photoshoot and make an appointment in his studio. If you have a budget for it and a lot of clothes ready for the photoshoot! The big advantage is the result: professional pictures and your website will upgrade in terms of appearance.
You don't have to be a professional model. A good photographer will give clear instructions and there is often a mirror in the studio so that you can see how your pose and the clothes at its best!
Professional photos are always edited. This does not mean that they will suddenly look unreal or artificial. As photo above: it is often mainly the light and contrast edited to make the photo look better.
In addition, some details of the clothes may be edited too.
Sometimes photos are edited in such a way that the background is replaced by a suitable background or a background that gives the photo extra allure. You can do this yourself with photo editing programs such as Photoshop or Gimp. There are plenty of tutorials on YouTube and if you study them, you will get skills to change photos yourself.
An other advantage: you will be able to partially manipulate photos if, for example, you want to eliminate disturbing elements in the photo or add texts.
Presenting and photographing your selfmade clothing is quite a job. Everyone likes to do it in his or her own way and often makes a conscious choice. Presenting selfmade clothes doesn't have to look super professional and no one expects it to look like a catwalk.
Going to a professional photographer offers many benefits and is often well worth the money. But if this does not fit within your budget and objective, it is not a disaster. Seamstresses prefer to see each other's sewing process, the difficulties of the sewing project and the results.
Whether you choose flat-lay pictures, presentation on a sewing mannequin, photos taken by your partner or by a professional photographer, be proud of all your work!
Baudekin Studio: Have you always wanted to make a beautiful skirt, but you don't know where to start? In this video, I will share the first step of sewing a skirt for beginners. I will show you how to measure yourself for a skirt if you don't have a partner to help you.
This is the first tutorial in my 'Learn How to Sew series for beginners'. Have you always wanted to make a beautiful skirt, but you don't know where to start?
In this video, I will share the first step of sewing a skirt for beginners. I will show you how to measure yourself for a skirt if you don't have a partner to help you. We will go over five basic measurements: front and back waist, front and back hips and skirt length.
When looking for fabrics for a sewing project, I always check whether the relevant (online) store also has so-called 'chain' fabrics. I love them!
Chain, straps or cables
By 'chain' fabrics I mean fabrics that have a design print of chains, cables and / or belts. Often this is also combined with flowers, fringes or bits of horse bridles. The fabric often has no more than three shades and, despite the busy design, still looks calm and balanced. It does not consist of panels, which is often the case with digitally printed tricot fabrics, but the pattern does repeat itself. This is hardly visible.
Colors and shades
The colors are usually based on black, brown or beige. The shades are often coordinated but can also contain bright colors such as red or blue. The shade of gold predominates so that the fabric always has a luxurious look. I love them because of the luxurious glamorous look and the resemblance to 'Hermès' style.
Which search terms can you best use?
If you are looking for the fabric, it is often difficult because the design does not really has a name.
Most fabric stores use different names.
Let's create a 'chains' outfit!
You can of course make anything you want from chains fabrics, but pay attention to the type of fabric. It is quite different what the fabric is.
Below are some ideas:
Pay particular attention to whether the fabric has a stretch content or not and check the sewing pattern carefully to notice if these are recommended fabrics. You can make anything from leftovers fabrics: toiletry bags, glasses cases, laptop sleeves and bags.
Finally, I have some styling tips. The fabric is often busy with design and it is therefore better to adjust the rest of your outfit accordingly. You don't want it all to look 'over-done', to look like a hippy or look like a clown.
Therefore, pay attention to the following:
Read more: Dressing up or dressing down
Chains fabrics are beautiful! But sometimes hard to find at the fabric stores. If you spot a fabric, let us know, we will publish the link or your self-made clothes!
You either love it or hate it: wax coats. But a fact is: wax coats have been worn for years by enthusiasts such as hunters, nature lovers, farmers, fishermen and horse people. Wax coats are functional and truly timeless classics. They are very comfortable, water-repellent and are very strong.
'Do they know bad weather'
Wax coats are originally from England, Ireland and Scotland. "Do they know bad weather" used to be a slogan of a well-known brand for a long time. Because wax coats are made of cotton with a special wax coat, they are water-repellent and also dirt-repellent. Wax coats are extremely strong and durable. This is also especially useful when you are a hunter, a nature lover or a horserider and you travel through the woods. A bush, thorny plant or a tree will not cause any damage. Most wax coats are very strong and they last for years.
Timeless, cool and beautiful
Wax clothing is ideal for many outdoor activities and outdoor sports. In addition, wearing a wax coat is a kind of lifestyle, sometimes also called: 'The English style'. It's chic, cool and tasteful. The colors are often brown, green, beige or navy and have checked linings. The coats can be made of real waxed cotton, but also of more modern fabrics that you do not have to wax.
Wax coats must be well maintained by re-lubricating the outside with wax or spraying once in a while. Please do not forget to use the waxspray outside and at a good distance. Make sure the jacket is clean first, by going over it with a soft brush. Wax coats are rarely washed, often it is not necessary because they breathe much better than real waterproof clothing and by traditionally wearing a sweater or cotton shirt / blouse underneath, the lining will not get wet with sweat itself.
Wearing a wax coat can initially be experienced as cold. But you warm up soon and feel wonderfully warm for a long time. For the real winter there are often extra linings for sale, which you can attach to the wax jacket by means of zippers or buttons. The unlined wax coats are ideal for fall and spring. The lined jackets are there for the winter and the extra linings are there for the really cold days.
Short or long wax coats
It seems as if there are only two models on the market: short or very long. In reality there are more variations in length, but short or long are indeed the most common models. Long wax coats are ideal to also protect your legs and the saddle when you are horseriding. Short wax coats offer more freedom of movement.
The prices of wax coats varies greatly and is highly brand dependent. Some wax coats are offered for less than a hundred euros, but if you want one of a well-known brand, you will pay a fortune. This is also because the jackets are often very complete and offer many extras. Lots of pockets, compartments, options and detachable parts.
Make your own wax coat
Can you make a wax coat yourself? Yes, you can, but there are few sewing patterns for a real wax coat. In our opinion, these three sewing patterns are best suited for making a wax coat. We looked at the possibility of making the jacket from canvas or waxed cotton, a clear and simple model and the possibilities to expand the jacket itself with extra pockets, hood etc. Specific sewing patterns for wax coats cannot be found. But a sewing pattern for a sturdy outdoor jacket can already be enough to use as a basis.
If you already have a wax coat that is heavily worn and 'off-duty', you can also tear it apart and use it as a sewing pattern. You can even adjust it or use parts that are not worn out. Think of pockets, inner pockets, maybe the cuffs and / or the hood.
We like Simplicity 59052 the most. The Simplicity pattern is extensive and very suitable for making a wax coat. Especially Model B. looks very good as the basis for a long wax coat. Make the jacket at least 20 cm. longer.
It's a fit 1011 is a nice simple raincoat and if you make it a lot shorter, place straight pockets on it and choose a metal two-way zipper, you will also come close to a wax jacket. The model requires some adjustments but is fine as a basis.
Burda 6360 (Model A) is more of a parka-like jacket because of the drawstring at the waist. But if you omit this, it also seems like a nice basis for a wax coat. The pockets in particular are well placed and sleeves, which consist of two parts, will fit nicely and allow plenty of freedom of movement.
Try to buy a real waxed cotton / canvas. However, it is difficult to obtain and sometimes too thick and stiff to sew. At Böttger we found a beautiful black waxed canvas.
You can also buy canvas, make the coat and apply the wax coat-layer later on, by waxing the jacket completely by hand, or hanging it up, outside and spraying it. Do this in the open air, and preferably two thin layers than one thick layer. You can buy wax everywhere, sometimes even at shoe stores, Bol.com or in outdoor stores.
A third option is to buy a fabric that is truly waterproof. Such as a good nylon or polyester fabric. However, we do not recommend this. The charm of a wax coat (and the comfort) is really that it is a wax coat and not a waterproof raincoat. You stay warm and you don't get wet with sweat, which is often the case with waterproof jackets, even though they claim to be 'breathable'.
If you are sewing a wax coat for the in-between seasons (spring and fall) then a 100% cotton lining is recommended. If you really want to go for the English style, choose a lining with a tartan design. This is available from Böttger fabrics. If you are going to make a wax coat for the winter, choose a 100% wool lining. At Böttger we found a beautiful woolen fabric, see above, middle photo. These are fabrics that you can fall in love with because of the quality, the timeless design and also the high wearing comfort.
Tip: buy a 35 cm. extra so you can make a scarf out of it. Super chic!
Waxcoats are normally close to the colors of nature: green, army green, moss green, dark brown, light brown, beige and liver-colored. But wax coats are also beautiful in dark blue (navy), black or even bright red. Traditionally, the lining is best in tartan designs. These are often sober in color but can also pop in red tones, bright blue and yellow stripes. We found the following canvas fabrics at Budget fabrics:
What else do you need to think about?
A wax coat looks simple but often has many options. For instance: then there is an extra loop for a dog whistle. You can of course also use this to hang a shopping cart coin, or a mouth cap:>) Anyway, a wax coat is a coat that you can use without a bag because of the many pockets and hidden pockets.
Tips you can think of to perfect your wax coat:
Long wax coats have very long splits at the back and there are straps at the bottom of the jacket, which you can put around your legs. This is because riders are wearing the jacket and the spindle gives room to hang over the saddle. The straps are to ensure that the front panels remain over the rider's legs and do not slide to the side.
Short wax coats sometimes have two zippers in the back where there is a long space, lined with nylon that runs behind the coat, as it were. The purpose of this extra space was for hunters to put in shot prey and to keep your hands free.
The older the wax coat the better...!
Why would you make a wax coat yourself?
But why would you make a wax coat yourself, a reader recently asked. The reasons are very simple.
Firstly, (brand) wax coats are really very expensive. Buying all the materials yourself (fabric, lining, closures, zippers, and cuffs), however expensive, are still a fraction of the real price you pay for a good wax coat.
A second reason is that wax coats are often 'annoying' in terms of sizes. If you think you are buying a tight jacket with a size M, it turns out that you fit in it twice. But if you buy a size S, you can barely move in it. And then we are not talking about the brands of which it is better to buy an XL than a size M. In addition, the size also strongly depends on what you are going to wear underneath. Do you want a thick turtleneck sweater underneath or do you prefer a tight ski pullover? If you buy the wax coat online or second-hand on the marketplace, it remains a big gamble in terms of size. Making a wax coat yourself can save you a lot of frustration and you can fit, fit and (adjust) again in the meantime.
A third reason, wax coats are often very standard in color and shape. If you make a wax coat yourself, you can, so to speak, make a flower lining in it or choose a bright color for the outside. You can make the jacket unique and very personal.
Last but not least: why not? If you have the skills to sew a 'Chanel style' jacket, a wedding dress or a complicated Cosplay costume... a wax coat will be the next challenge!
Read more on Vogue:
Listen Up to “Chanel Connects,” a New Podcast Series Focused on Culture
Bridgerton is an American drama series created by Chris Van Dusen and produced by Shonda Rhimes and is on Netflix since December 2020. It is based on Julia Quinn's novels. It takes place around 1813 in the competitive world of Regency London at the debutante ball: regency dresses, gloves and umbrellas. Daughters of aristocratic backgrounds make their debut in the hope of securing a suitable marriage partner.
But Bridgerton is not just a costume drama as we have seen in the past such as Downton Abbey, Amadeus, The King's speech, The remains of the day and Pride & Prejudice. Bridgerton is innovative in terms of casting. The cast is multi-cultural and it fits perfectly into the story.
In addition, we all enjoy Bridgerton exactly at the right moment. We are in a dark time because of the Pandemic and most people have been living in their hoodies and sweatpants for months. And suddenly there is a delightful series in which the costumes look dramatically large, extremely beautiful and almost unreal.
We cannot run from a Pandemic, in fact, we are all trapped in our home or our limited work-related-circle or 'social bubble'. We have to get the Pandemic under control and prevent it from spreading around. Of course, everyone knows it won't last forever, even though it feels like it. But we can escape and enjoy our digital life, a good book or great movies and series. Like Bridgerton!
Costumes and dressing up big time!
The life at Bridgerton's is so different that it seems almost unreal. Beautiful settings, people and even better: the costumes and accessories. While we are walking in the streets with masks and plastic gloves, the Bridgerton artistocracy walks with umbrellas, mega dresses (with crinoline cages underneath), hats and long, flawless white or lace gloves.
When was the last time we dressed up so chic, or did we do our very best to look neat and clean? It seems a long time ago.... The twenties of this century, so far, do not look like 'the roaring twenties' (of the last century) at all....
Dressing up, in dark times
In this corona crisis, is hardly applicable anymore. Why should we? Many people opt for convenience and comfort. But dressing up also has to do with joie de vivre, self-confidence, self-esteem and ambition.
As we wrote in: Living in a bubble, we now live and work digitally, but we are definitely seen. Behind the screen during Facetime conversations, by means of selfies for Instagram or during meetings on Zoom. A nice blouse with a bow or brooch, or a homemade Chanel-style jacket, shows a different attitude than a sweater or hoodie with a just-out-of-bed hairstyle.
Read more: Dressing up or dressing down
Bridgerton as inspiration
But for now, fortunately, we have Bridgerton to escape from the abnormally-normal now-a-days world. We live in our comfortable - dressing down clothes for months.... And while we are enjoying ourselves watching the innovative costume drama, why not make something ourselves? Just for fun, or for the future (party)?
Our suggestions for you to get creative:
While we are enjoying the Netflix series Bridgerton and the beautiful costumes, we realize once again how we are live during the Pandemic and lockdown(s). We hardly make any effort to look good. Comfort is more important than chic, and that is of course practical. Dressing down is also part of life and has become almost standard in this corona time ...
But 'Dressing up' says a lot about you as a person and is always possible. Use the beautiful series as inspiration and make something beautiful for yourself, for now or later. We won't be walking down the street in crinolines or mega costumes, but sometimes it's not just about the result, but also about the feeling and of course the challenge of the sewing process!
Vogue V7860 is an old sewing pattern which almost looks like a vintage sewing pattern. But it is not a vintage sewing pattern at all. It is a great sewing pattern for making a classic Chanel jacket and easier than the same type of sewing pattern: Vogue 9095.
Vogue V7860 is a beautiful classic sewing pattern for a Chanel-style jacket with bands. The recommended fabrics are: Lightweight Tweeds, Lightweight Gabardine and Silk/Linen Blend. The sewing pattern also offers pants in two different lengths and a skirt. You can also make this sewing pattern in Bouclé fabrics, with bands made of the same fabric as the lining.
Coco Chanel often enjoyed this: use the silk lining on the outside of the jacket or make a blouse to wear underneath.
Vogue V7860 is an average sewing level pattern. We expect you can handle this with a little sewing experience. It is not a difficult sewing pattern and the bands around it are easy to make. The skirt and pants do not give any sewing problems either.
Our Chanel-style jacket:
We made the jacket from a Bouclé fabric and put a dark blue band around it. This in combination with a light green lining. We quilted the lining on the outside and deviated from the sewing pattern in that sense.
Read all about quilting liners to make an authentic Chanel style jacket: The Couture Cardigan Jacket by Claire Shaeffer.
Vogue V9095, like Vogue V7975, seems a bit outdated because of the frontpage of the sewing pattern. The drawings are drawn in a style that no longer fits today. Nevertheless, we would like to point out this fine pattern that is very suitable for making a Chanel-Style jacket. The pattern is an excellent base to make a Chanel-Style jacket that is super cute.
The vogue pattern is a lined jacket pattern in three different variations. The jacket is enclosed by bands and has princess lines. The sewing pattern is available in two different sizes. Make sure you order the right one!
The pattern is labeled "Vogue EASY". However, we believe that it takes experience to get the bands right. (and the welt-pockets!) The instructions are clear, but it remains a challenge. Just ask an experienced seamstress for help, then it is certainly fun to work with this sewing pattern.
The fabrics that are recommended to use are: Garbadine, Crepe, Shantung. And for the contrasting bands: Lace, Eyelets, Novelty sheers.
We have made the jacket in a wool fabric. This was pleasant work and easy to do. Note, however, that diagonal lines or checkered patterns are rarely advised. This is mainly because it is a huge job to get the 'pattern' exactly so that the lines of the front pieces merge. However, by placing the contrasting bands in a different angle, it is not noticeable that it does not fit 100% in terms of lines.
Either way, choosing a plain fabric is a lot easier.
Vogue V9095 is an ideal sewing pattern to make the Chanel-Style jacket. The pattern is based on the 'boxy-like' original Chanel jacket with bands. The lining also offers the opportunity to really make it into a Haute Couture jacket that is perfectly finished both on the inside and on the outside.
The Chanel-Style jacket is very cute. And in terms of styling you can go in all directions: from super modern to timeless or vintage.
Vogue V7860 and Vogue V9095 are fun sewing patterns to make a Chanel-Style jacket with bands. Vogue V7860 is easier than Vogue V9095 eventhough Vogue claims exactly the opposite.
Vogue V9095 has sleeves that consist of two parts and V7860 has one pattern part sleeves. Most importantly, the band around it is a lot more wrapped around the sewing pattern V9095 because there is no interruption in the band Model B and diagonally interrupted for Model A. This requires the necessary experience and insight. With the sewing pattern V7860, the bands are easier to make because you do it per pattern piece.
Vogue V9095 has a little more waist because the princess lines continue. Vogue V7860 also has princess lines, but only halfway under the bag. Wee prefer Vogue V9095, which is also more readily available via the Internet. You can also keep an eye on sewing patterns.
Truly Victorian TV494 Shirtwaists (1894) is a sewing pattern for a blouse with large puff sleeves as worn in the period: Bell Epoque 1890-1900. The sewing pattern is published by 'Truly Victorian', a sewing pattern designer who mainly focuses on Victorian style clothing.
Truly Victorian TV 494
The sewing pattern is a multi-size sewing pattern; you can make it in sizes A to N. These letters represent the size of the chest and waist. The sewing pattern does not come in the envelope as with the well-known other brands, but is issued in A-4 format and is packed in a plastic sleeve. It contains the large radar sheet in all sizes and an explanation and introduction published on four A-4 papers.
A shirtwaist is actually nothing more than a blouse. Shirtwaists used to be worn mainly in the summer, had no bones and were unlined. They were made from light, soft cotton. Shirtwaists were worn in the skirt or over the skirt and were both chic and everyday (work) clothing.
The sewing pattern does not mention any advice regarding the sewing level you need to make this blouse. We think that a beginner will succeed, with maybe a little bit of help in case the sleeves and making buttonholes are too difficult. It is not a difficult design to make.
The fabric recommendation is hard to find on the sewing pattern, but in the end we find it on the first page at the very bottom.
Suggested fabrics: "Lawn, batiste, muslin, silk, seersucker, or other light weight fabrics."
Notions: you only need buttons and half a meter of mesh or interfacing for the inner top of the puff sleeves. It is strongly advised to first make the blouse as a sample, for example from muslin. The fabric is not stretchy, therefore it is important to pick the right size to make sure the blouse fits nicely.
We think Truly Victorian TV494 Shirtwaist is a nice sewing pattern and we enjoyed making the blouse. The blouse is ideal for Cosplay, LARP or Fantasy. But also to learn how to make puff sleeves and make clothes festive or 'upcycle' a blouse.
The sewing pattern provides great explanation and is not difficult to make.
What sewing tools do you need when you start sewing? You don't have to buy the most expensive sewing machine or fancy fabrics and gadgets. You can go a long way with simple tools. Even if you are already an experienced seamstress, this video by Elena Tran fromBaudekinStudio is very interesting.
The right tool for the job
And that is especially true if sewing is your hobby. You are nowhere without a needle and thread. But you can build your collection of tools slowly and wisely. You don't need everything at once.
Perhaps a tool is mentioned that you did not know yet ...
"When you learn how to sew, it's hard to decide what tools to buy. In this video, I will share the sewing tools you need to start sewing, what they are used for and also some advanced tools I use in my studio.
Tools mentioned in the video:
Many thanks fot the video BaudekinStudio !
Some sewing patterns are 'styled' in such a way that the sewing patterns are suitable for regular jackets and typical 'Chanel-style' jacket. But some sewing patterns are clearly: wow, a real Chanel jacket! We are talking about V1717 from Vogue! This is a sewing pattern for a jacket, a longer jacket, trousers and a wrap skirt. And all in the perfect Chanel-style!
Vogue V1717 is published by Vogue and no special deisgner is mentioned on it, as it is usually the case. The front page shows a complete outfit with one jacket in two different variations (in lengths), pants and a skirt. These are all made of Houndstooth tweed fabric. The outfit has a typical Chanellook with many Chanel details. We love it!
The sewing level indicated is: medium. We agree. The sewing pattern is not terribly difficult, but an absolute beginner could use some extra text and explanation. It requires no special couture technical skills. The only tricky part: making buttonholes in thick tweed fabric and the zipper and pockets in the pants.
The recommended fabrics are: wool, wool mixes and for the pants: wool crepe, garbadine or twill. We used a Bouclé fabric for the jacket. This can be done but is not easy in terms of buttonholes and collar. Tip: use large sturdy buttons and (if you can) make bounded buttonholes. This is quite an extra job but it will give a much better (couture-)results!
If possible: try to make some waist/shape in the jackets. This takes away the 'boxy' shape, as the Chanel jacket was once made, but will still look better.
Choose good lining material so that the jackets are comfortable to wear. You may also choose to use lining for the pants so that they will not itch.
More on this: A closer look at lining fabrics!
Vogue V1717 is a sewing pattern for a great outfit in real Chanellook. The garments are fairly easy to sew. We do recommend going for bounded buttonholes, or buttons for decoration and with push buttons at the back.
We would also like to point out the choice of lining fabrics: choose a fine fabric (silk or cupro silk) so that the entire outfit is comfortable to wear.
'Never underestimate the power of a woman with a sewing machine'
'I sew therefore I am'
'Beautiful things come together, one stitch at a time'
'I am not gonna buy that, I can make it !'
'I sew. What's your superpower?'
'Sewing, Coffee, Chocolates'
'Keep calm and stitch on'
'Sewing all day long'
“I am certain that a Sewing Machine would relieve as much human suffering as a hundred Lunatic Asylums, and possibly a good deal more.”
― Margaret Atwood, Alias Grace
“When pockets were first added to women’s clothing in 1913, a Paris reporter wrote, “It’s all over with men’s superiority over women.” Pockets are indeed indispensable, and they come in two types: patch and set-in”
― Claire B. Shaeffer, Sew Any Set-In Pocket
Guestwriter: Elena Tran, BaudekinStudio
The Fabrics to Use as Linings
The purpose of a lining is to cover the construction details of the inside of the garment, any unfinished seams and also to extend the life of your clothes. Historically, lining were mostly used for warmth. You see lots of painting depicting fur linings to provide warmth to the wearer. In the 1900s, the wool lining was featured on men’s country clothing and it was intended for keeping warm during shooting and hunting pastime.
Contrasting lining on women’s clothing first gained popularity in the 1930s and it is still a favorite today. Let’s explore the fabrics used for lining the garments today.
Polyester lining is the most common man-made fabric you will find in the stores. It is produced from petroleum oil and it can almost mimic the properties of cotton, silk or linen with minimal cost. Maintenance is easy. Throw it in the washing machine and voila.
However, if you place polyester and silk side by side, you will immediately feel the difference between the two. Polyester fabric almost sticks to the body when you sweat and I don’t like how it feels and how difficult it is for a novice to cut and sew this slippery fabric. In addition, let’s not forget that this synthetic fabric is not biodegradable and the discarded clothes will linger in landfills for generations. Because polyester is so cheap to purchase, customers feel that it is expendable and discard clothes or fabric without second thought. On the plus side, polyester fabric can also be produced from recycled plastic bottles, although this technology is still in its infancy.
Rayon is also referred to as viscose, viscose rayon, or artificial silk, can also be used as lining and it is widely available in the neighborhood fabric stores. It is a man-made fiber regenerated from cellulose (a.k.a. wood from trees). Technically, rayon is called an artificial fiber because wood chips need a bit of chemical help to convert them into yarn. After the production process is complete, we end up with a beautiful silky fabric and it is a common lining material in Haute couture clothing because it costs less. It feels nice and I would almost go for it. Rayon is very soft to the touch and it absorbs moisture well. But on the minus side (and a big one for me), production of rayon is not the best ecological choice as it releases carbon into the atmosphere, salt into the water supplies and it cuts the much needed trees.
Dressmakers rarely think of natural fabrics for lining because it may prove expensive. But if you are making clothes for yourself, let me encourage you to go for silk lining. Silk is produced from the protein secreted by the larvae of the silk moth as they lay in their cocoons. The only concerning part is that the cocoons are cooked with the insects still inside to begin the silk production process. However, I like the fact that the silk moth is cultivated specifically for silk production and the process of silk manufacturing is sustainable and eco-friendly. For some of you price is a factor when shopping for lining fabric. I consider that a good thing. The fact that silk is an expensive fabric makes us more careful about the quantity we purchase. Buy only the amount of material that you need for your garment, eliminate the waste, recycle the remnants into other projects and always think long term slow fashion.
There is another reason why silk is perfect to use as a lining. It feels warm in winter and cool in summer. The best silk lining choices are silk habotai and silk charmeuse because they are light enough and they are available in many shades of colours. The lining fabric can match the fashion fabric or you can choose a contrasting fabric for your design. The lining fabric can also be used as a trim on cuffs and collars for a special effect. This technique was used by Chanel, as well as by another famous designer, Madeleine Vionnet. Great designers like Chanel, Dior and Balenciaga were adamant about using the best fabrics as linings. Chanel went as far as using the expensive fabrics that the matching tops were made from as linings on her skirts and jackets.
As for the lining construction, there are rules that you learn as you sew different pieces. For example, when cutting the lining for a jacket, you design the lining slightly bigger that the garment to allow for ease of movement. That’s why you often see a small pleat in the center back of the jacket lining. Another trick is to attach the lining to the skirt by means of a thread chain. You can also quilt the lining and the main garment together. Chanel used this technique to support the loosely-woven tweed fabric on her skirts and jackets.
When you are making your own bespoke clothes, I encourage you to use the best lining material you can find. You will have a better sewing experience, more satisfaction from wearing a quality garment and you will enjoy the feeling of silk next to your skin.
BibliographyClive Hallett, Amanda Johnston. Fabric for fashion: The complete guide. London: Laurence King Publishing, 2017.
Smithsonian. Fashion: The Definitive History of Costume and Art. New York: DK Publishing, 2012.
At this time of the year it is always nice to have those comfortable jackets or cardigans you can quickly put on. Just in case you have to go out of the door. Or in case you need an extra layer in the house. We have made a stylish coat that is slightly different from a bathrobe, but is not a real coat either.
Bathrobe or real coat?
You could walk around all day in a bathrobe. Especially if it is made of lovely soft terry cloth, like our bathrobes in this blog of the sewing pattern Simplicity 1562. This sewing pattern is for a bathrobe. But the pattern is just as useful for a bathrobe with more of the look of a regular coat. The only difference is that there is no lining, pockets, inner pockets, zippers, buttons etc. Nevertheless, it is an ideal sewing pattern for a nice jacket that is very comfortable. Bet this will be a favorite piece of your wardrobe or a CLASSIC!
For this inner and/or outer jacket we were inspired by the many coats we saw on catwalks for the autumn and winter season. Coats were mainly worn as an extra layer and as a wrap. Wide, long coats for a complete outfit. In terms of style: big collars, shawl collars and often in a simple, classic shape. Wide, comfortable and quite casual. Jackets to 'live' in both indoors or outdoors.
The Pied-de-poule or Houndstooth design is also very fashionable this year and a timeless classic anyway. But we looked more at checkered designs because Pied-de-poule is a design that you have to love. Most people quickly find it too busy or a bit old-fashioned.
Comfort and class
This coat is therefore a combination of a bathrobe in a warm woolen fabric. The color is easy. Black and white is always good and stylish. This fabric is for sale at Budgetstoffen and cheap. With two meters of fabric you have enough fabric to make the coat.
Because the fabric is quite stiff, you don't need interlining or reinforcement. The shawl collar makes the jacket very pleasant to wear and is ideal to wear over other clothes. Whether you wear a shirt, a sweater with a roll collar or a bare neck, a shawl collar is always a good idea. The jacket closes with a simple belt. You can also wear the jacket open, but the wrap over makes the jacket nice and warm and pleasant. A lot of 'homewear' is loose hanging and the front panels often do not close. This is easy but not warm or comfortable like this jacket is.
Sewing pattern Simplicity 1562:
In terms of sizes you can clearly choose between children and adults and then also in sizes XS to XL. We recommend to take a large size so that the jacket is nice and spacious.
Simplicity 1562: Sewing level
The sewing pattern is easy to make. It is an 'Easy' sewing pattern and you can rest assured that even a total beginner can handle it. The fabric sews easily because it is not too thick, but certainly not too thin. We do recommend finishing the seams with a lock machine or a zigzag stitch. The fabric is unfortunately too thick for a French seam.
Do you want to make a nice jacket for indoors and outdoors? Then consider the Simplicity 1562 sewing pattern for a bathrobe. This sounds strange, but it is certainly not. You can make exactly the coat you want from beautiful woolen fabric.
Not really a coat, not even a bathrobe or a cardigan, but a wonderfully comfortable 'coat' for the winter. A jacket that is stylish enough for walking outside, but comfortable and handy enough to wear indoors instead of a bathrobe or hoody.
The jacket is easy to make and with the beautiful wool fabric from Budget fabrics you are also affordable.
Guestwriter: Elena Tran, BaudekinStudio
Another year has passed and 2020 was the most stressful year for all of us. I don’t know a single person who didn’t feel anxious or depressed at some point during this year. I cannot imagine how I would have coped with the pandemic blues if I didn’t have my sewing hobby which became my full-time business. When I sew, I forget everything and everyone around me. This is what the scientists call “the flow”. My studio became my sanctuary, the place to melt away the worries.
Why is sewing so good for us? I looked into a sewing hobby specifically, but any hobby can have the same positive effects. Spoon-making or pet grooming are just as beneficial.
Sewing helps reduce anxiety and depression
I can honestly tell you that when I work on my projects, the days just fly by and I feel so happy every day. And I am not the only one who feels this way. In a study of more than 3,500 knitters, published in The British Journal of Occupational Therapy, 81% of respondents with depression reported feeling happy after knitting and more than half reported feeling "very happy." (Wilson) And have you ever watches someone do the needlework? The experience is hypnotic, I can assure you.
Another study at Harvard’s Medical School Mind/Body Institute found a reduction in heart rate of 11 beats per minute and a fall in blood pressure during knitting. (Knitting, Needlepoint, Sewing, Stress reduction and Yoga) This is a very beneficial physiological response, especially for those with high blood pressure.
If these results were not enough to convince you, in another study of quilters, the participants identified that the use of bright colours in their projects had uplifting effects on their mood, especially in the winter. (Emily L. Burt) Making something pretty in beautiful fabrics and colours always helped me deal with extreme stress and winter blues as well.
Sewing is intellectually stimulating
Sewing belongs to that intellectually stimulating activity that provides constant learning opportunities. After you learn how to sew a straight skirt, you move on to another challenge to make a pleated skirt or a skirts with godets. And you can challenge yourself indefinitely. Just keep changing your projects to keep yourself mentally stimulated. Anyone who tried pattern drafting and alterations agree that they involve complex thinking and problem solving. These types of activities are the subject of an unfolding research on brain neuroplasticity (Ackerman). The idea is that our brain constantly relearns and adapts throughout our lives and it is possible to slow down the brain degenerative conditions by constantly challenging our brain to new tasks. The neuroscientists agree that constantly learning new things or starting a new hobby can prevent dementia and Alzheimer’s disease and that it is never too late to learn new things.
Sewing helps self-esteem
In addition to new learning of challenging skills which improves brain function, sewing leads to the great sense of accomplishment, improved self-esteem and satisfaction. Every time you complete a new project, you advance a step or two and celebrate the small victories. You feel even better when other people comment and complement you on your clothes. And when you daughter asks if she can borrow one of your pieces, well, that tops the cake.
Sewing helps form new friendships
I can tell you with confidence, that I formed the best friendships by connecting with the people in the sewing community. They are honestly the happiest people to be around. We share gladly and do not judge because we understand that sewing is a gradual skill- building process. You have to walk before you run and simple projects sometimes turn out to be the most difficult ones. In one of the studies of quilters, the participants reported that they formed strong friendships during their meetings and praise from others boosted self-esteem and increased motivation to complete the projects. (Emily L. Burt)
I had a similar experience when I attended the sewing courses at a local college. Our classes were so relaxed and positive. Not all sewing skills are enjoyable to everyone and there is no need pretending that sewing is all fun. I think I had to use my seam ripper a thousand times when I was in school. However, support and encouragement from like-minded people helped me get to the finish line and bring the final projects to the show and tell.
I hope that all these proven benefits will encourage you to start sewing. You don't need to get the most expensive sewing machine or fancy fabrics and gadgets.
Start small and build your skills gradually. Make sure you have good lighting setup and your work station is comfortable. Change your activities and project often to keep your interest going. Join the most fun and relaxing community of sewing enthusiasts!
Is this day your day-off and would you like to make something for a loved one, friend or family? We have an idea for you that you could basically make within a few hours. And of course the present will be what we stand for: chic, timeless and a bit of Chanel style!
Marfy Fashion Studio
We received an email from Marfy Fashion Studio because we are subscribed to the newsletter. This email came out well because a free sewing pattern from Marfy is always great. In this case it is about a sewing pattern for a stola. A stola which you can create very quickly and which is easy to make.
Marfy sewing patterns are usually not suitable for beginners. This is because there are no instructions included and the sewing patterns are always pre-cut. As a seamstress you need to have experience and sewing skills to understanding about the construction. The only clue you will get are numbers on the sewing pattern parts and the overall picture.
Read about this: the difference between sewing patterns from various brands. However, this sewing pattern is easy and suitable for beginners as well.
Sewing Pattern 6817
The Marfy download link:
Good luck !
And happy holidays!
Did you want to learn how to make couture fabric covered buttons? I will share my method with you step by step, including the right tools, fabrics and detailed demonstration. Making couture fabric buttons without a kit is easy and very rewarding.
Where to buy plastic rings: I got my on Amazon, but they are also available at fabric stores Pellon Easy Pattern is available on https://baudekinstudio.ca/
If you want to create a Chanel-style jacket and you are searching on the Internet (and on this website!), you will notice: the real vintage Chanel couture jackets often had buttons made out of fabrics. You will notice these buttons on modern Chanel jackets as well. You immediately want such beautiful and matching buttons too. And that's possible!
Fabric buttons are still 'Haute couture' beautiful!
Coco Chanel started making handmade buttons, mainly from Tweeds and Bouclé fabrics. She used fabrics because buttons were expensive. But also because the fabric buttons gave more 'couture' appearance to the clothing. The buttons and the jackets were perfectly matching and everyone knew about the making process: a time-consuming and dedicated job.
Coco Chanel started her career as a hat maker. Because of this, she knew many sewing techniques and she could handle different types of materials. She also had an eye for details, which gave the jackets something extra's, but they were never 'over the top'.
Her motto: "Simplicity is the key of elegance"
The authentic Chanel vintage fabric buttons are real treasure and not easy to buy. This is mainly because Tweeds and Bouclé are not durable fabrics and the buttons had to endure a lot.
If you are looking for fabric buttons in 'Chanel-style', Baudekin Studio is a great webshop.
Sometimes it is possible to find fabric buttons at a market, in a fabric store, or even in thrift stores. But you have to be very lucky that they will match with the fabric. Baudekin Studio has a few fabric buttons in its range. Affordable and above all: very beautiful.
The buttons are easy to match with many fabrics in terms of color and composition. Especially the black and white Bouclé buttons, can be used with almost any Bouclé fabric. But the colored fabric buttons also turned out to be a great option for a Chanel-Style jacket. This is mainly because Bouclé fabrics are often woven from multiple colored threads. Most of the times, there is always a color to match with the threads.
The example above: which color fits better with the dark green/black/blue/yellow Chanel-style jacket? The green or the yellow? Or both?
Chic couture clothing
Fabric buttons are also often the best choice for couture outfits. The example below shows it perfectly: a bridal cape or evening dress bolero with fabric buttons. The buttons make the cape extra beautiful and it is also much more convenient to match your jewelry. Are you going for gold or silver? If the buttons of evening wear are exactly the same as the fabric: go ahead and make your own choice.