Friday, December 14, 2012

My First "Mad Men" Reproduction Dress


A couple of summers ago I saw this photo in "TV Guide"  I fell instantly in love with this dress.  I ripped the insert out of the magazine and went fabric shopping.  Of course I would have loved to have found this exact print in a crisp silk, scaled perfectly for Gene and her friends, but dream on!

After searching all the fabric stores in the Puget Sound area that I could get to, I found this print at a quilt shop.  I thought it was a pretty good match to the original dress.

"Blue Parasol" Gene is my favorite Betty model.
I loved this design so much I made it in two other fabrics.

I decided to try this dress on one of my Poppy Parker dolls, I was very pleased how well it fit her.  It also goes well with her era, since Mad Men takes place in the early 60's.  She just needs some red lips now.

This version of the dress is sold out.
My re-styled "Glammed Up" Ivy looks lovely in this version.  While I was sewing these dresses the print kept reminding me of food.  I couldn't figure out why.  Then I dawned on me, red jello mixed with cool-whip!
I love my "Tornado" Gene with red lips.
I have a few of these dresses for sale in two of the different fabrics.
If you are interested in buying one of these dresses click here.
To purchase this pattern click here.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Sound of Music Red Suit

I am still laboring away on my huge batch of  red outfits.  Only 3 more styles to go!

This stylish suit was inspired by the 1965 classic "The Sound of Music.
The Baroness Elsa Schroeder wore this suit in the film.
I love this backdrop.
And this one too
The blouse is sleeveless to make it easier to dress the doll and because I like the way it looks.

To purchase this pattern click here.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Lady in Red

This is a red version of Grace Kelly's "Rear Window" cocktail dress.
For more information about the original design click here.

I used chiffon for the skirt to see how it would look, since pleated chiffon is sometimes hard to find.

I love how it turned out.  I also love my balcony backdrop, can you tell?

I could see this design in many different colors.  I may try it in pink someday.  If I do, I will not line the shoulder/sleeve pieces.  I wish I hadn't lined them in this version, except I was worried about staining.
The model is my restyled "Special Scene" Madra.  She loves wearing red.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

"Dial M For Murder" Red Lace Dress

The beautiful red lace dress in the 1954 film "Dial M For Murder" starring Grace Kelly was also in my huge batch of red outfits. 

I am really happy about how the dresses turned out.
I couldn't decide of Grace's dress was one piece or a dress and a jacket
I decided to make the dress strapless with a short bolero jacket.  I should add a photo of the dress without the jacket so you can see how nice it looks also as a strapless dress.

I found this lace at JoAnn Fabrics.  I used JoAnn's red Cassa satin for the lining.

I sewed the clipped edging of a lace trim on the bodice, jacket, sleeves and hem.



I had two differnet red laces in my fabric stash, so I cut out as many dresses as I could out of both pieces.

 Lace 1 from JoAnn's

and lace 2.  I liked lace 1 better at first, but I am finding that lace 2 is growing on me.  I am not sure which version I should keep for myself now.

If you are interested in puchasing this pattern click here.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

I'm Never Going to do This Again

Earlier this year I decided it was time to made some red outfits.  When I first started sewing for Gene I only made two outfits, one to sell and one for me.  After a year or so of doing that, I started making OOAK's.  In 2008 I decided to make the most of my designs and started making small batches of each design.  I didn't make sense to me to work so hard on making a new design to only make it once.  I limited the size of my batches to about 8 outfits usually, unless I could squeeze out one more from my fabric.  I think there are many advantages to my system:  I use up the fabric, it is efficient, and I don't usually have a problem selling my outfits.  The biggest drawback is I haven't worked with any real colors for a long time now.
My red list started growing:  The red lace dress from Grace Kelly's "Dial M for Murder", the red suit the the Countess wears in "Sound of Music", Travilla's red wool suit with the black fur sleeves (part 2), a red version of "Rear Window's" black cocktailer, etc.... I started designing the different outfits and cutting out all the batches back in February.  I figured it would take me only a month or two to finish everything.  If course my eyes are bigger than my time.  It probably wouldn't have been so bad but after I cut out all the lace dresses there were a lot of scraps left over.  I got the "brilliant" idea to make lace and chiffon cocktailers like I had last year.  Thirty-five lace bodices later, I really started wondering about my sanity.
Now I haven't been sewing these red outfits the whole time, I did get distracted doing quite a few commissions this Spring and Cub Scouts really sucked a lot of my time away from sewing this past  Summer.
I think the grand total is 107 outfits.  It wasn't so bad while I was working on the machine work.  I just kept plugging away at it until all I had left to do was the hand-work.  The hand-work is taking forever, and I am getting sick of it.  I decided a few weeks ago to focus, focus like a laser beam, or at least try to.  I am now finishing one style at a time, making the pattern to sell, and selling the outfits.
I hope everyone likes red.  I have at least 6 more styles to finish and sell of various batch sizes.  After all the red is done, I will then only make one style and the pattern at a time.  My goal is to have a new batch of outfits and its pattern to sell every 2-3 weeks and not go months between posts and sales.
Focus Diane, Focus.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Grace Kelly's Beautiful Red Dress

When I first saw these photos of Grace Kelly in this dress I knew I HAD to make it.

I am not sure when this photo shoot happened.  If anyone knows, please let me know.

This is my version.
I ended up making a strapless dress with a sweetheart neckline,  jacket, and belt.

I just love using backdrops.


The dress is made of silk dupioni and lined in white.



I am so excited to finally have a Grace Kelly doll!  I met a lovely lady at my last convention, and we worked out a trade.



She can't stand on her own, so that is why the chair is there.

 These dresses are sold out.

If you are interested in the pattern click here.