Sunday, June 28, 2015

Hardy Amies' 1956 Suit

This suit is one of the first designs I fell in love with when I became obsessed with sewing for Gene.

I found this picture in a library book years ago.  I believe this is from John Peacock's  20th Century Fashion:  The Complete Sourcebook.

(Picture By John Peacock)

Hardy Amies was a British designer who designed for Queen Elizabeth.  I searched the internet high and low to find a photograph of this suit, but I have not found one yet.

This was my first attempt back in 2006.

It fits the Tonner dolls much better than Gene.

Last year I redesigned the pattern to fit Gene better.  I made it out of silk noil.  Noil is one of my favorite suit fabrics to work with.  It gives the look of wool without the bulk.
I also made it in navy noil.

While I was working on the red and navy suits, it occurred to me that this is a great basic suit pattern.  I wanted to see what it would look like without the front straps, so I made the pattern up in a green noil without the straps.

I was honestly surprised how much I loved it. 

The color is perfect with "Cocoa Crisp's" green eyes. 

 My original suit on Brenda Starr. 

Just for fun, the hat is a pin from JoAnn Fabrics.

To purchase the pattern, click here.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Black Lipstick in Balmain

I took some more photos of "Black Lipstick" yesterday.  The lighting was a lot better than it had been the last time I took pictures.

I can't believe this is a colored photo.

Pierre Balmain circa 1954



I love this backdrop, but the floor looks all wavy because the base of the stand is under the fabric.

The black wigcap looks great with this outfit too, maybe not with this backdrop though.

I love the rooted wigcap concept.  Now I just want to tell JAMIEshow dolls- more platinum wigcaps please.

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Modes Royale Cocktail Dress with Chiffon Bodice

This trio of dresses was inspired by a Modes Royale 1956-1957 Fall/Winter design.

I love the description of this dress-  "Scooped and contoured is the direction of this skirt planned to arch out at sides and glide at back."

View A is made out of black casa satin. I love this satin because it is not too shiny or flimsy.  It would also look beautiful in a print.

The sash and straps are tied slightly different than they are in the Modes Royal picture.  I will add pictures of the sash tied like the original picture at a future time.

Madra looks stunning in her new "Hutton" wig.

Originally I was only going to make the dress just like I saw it in the picture. 

But then I remembered the beautiful embroidered chiffon fabrics that I had bought a long time ago in Seattle.  So I created a View B.

View B has a full skirt and gives the dress another great look.

My two JAMIEshow Oonas are my models


The black chiffon is silk.  I prefer silk chiffon over polyester because it drapes better.

I used polyester chiffon for this dress though because my white silk chiffon is more of a cream than a true white.

 Then I had to try the design in lace.

Just when I thought I was done, I started wondering what the design would look like as a sheath. 
View C was made from embroidered chiffon.


But wait!!  That is not all!  I think I want to make a View D now.  It will be made out of a cotton print.  I will add the photos and instructions after I make it.

To purchase this pattern click here.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Oh My Heck! I Got a "Grey Lady"

Well, really her name is "Black Lipstick".

 Image Property of JAMIEshow
She is the 20th Anniversary Gene doll, and I have one!
 Image Property of JAMIEshow

When JAMIEshow announced the "Le Jazz Hot" convention earlier in the year, I didn't plan on attending.  I usually go to Sandra Stillwell's conventions later in the summer.  But the more I thought about it, the more I wanted to go, so I decided to live on the wild side and attend two conventions in one year.

It was a great convention in Chicago over the Memorial Day weekend.  We had a lot of time to sightsee in downtown Chicago.  My favorite place was the American Girl Store.

Saturday night, at dinner, we were introduced to "Black Lipstick" with this video.  Our table didn't have a great view of the screen, so I didn't see all the details.  When I first saw that the dolls name was "Black Lipstick", I was a little worried.  I'm not into the Goth look.  When we finally realized that the pictures were colored pictures the crowd went wild!!!!

There is a story behind why almost everyone was excited about getting a grey doll.  It happened before my Gene convention going time, way back in 2007.  At that time, Gene was being manufactured by Integrity Toys.  Before Integrity made Gene, Ashton Drake made her, but that is another story.

The theme of the 2007 "Rare Deal" convention was Film Noir.  The story that I have heard from several different people was that doll clothes designers were asked to make outfits to donate for a charity auction.  They were asked to make the clothes only in black, white, and greys.  The designers did not know what the doll looked like in advance.

Here are some photos of the "Grey Ladies"  I found these photos on this website.  The "Grey Lady" Gene doll was designed to look like she had stepped out of a black and white movie.  I heard that the attendees at the convention when crazy for her.

 This one is my favorite by Wayne Nilson.  She sold for the highest price.

She is almost impossible to get on the secondary market, and sells for very high prices.  She is very special.  I wish I could have attended this convention so I could have seen all these lovely ladies.

Now back to "Black Lipstick"
 Image Property of JAMIEshow

Her skin is a light grey and she came with a platinum rooted wigcap.  Her gown was inspired by a Charles James creation.

I took my first photos of my "Black Lipstick" today.  I wish I had had better lighting, but Junuary just started up here on Whidbey Island.
 This outfit was inspired by a Jean Desses' Theatre de la Mode design.


Here is the pile of clothes I want to photograph on "Black Lipstick".  We shall see how far I get.  I would rather sew than take pictures, but there are some great outfits in this stash.  My dolls have better and more expensive clothes than me!