Friday, January 20, 2012

Friday Show-and-Tell

Good afternoon, lovelies. I'm currently finishing up my copycat-themed dress for this week's Sew Weekly challenge (based on Esme's adorable vintage dress), which is taking a bit longer than I'd imagined. I'd like to blame a pattern or fabric, but really I've been busy with school and going to see The Civil Wars. So, in lieu of another dress post, I thought today I'd do a little show-and-tell of recent sewing finds.


 First up, are my two local fabric finds. Up until the last few months, Austin had a dearth of non-chain apparel fabric stores. Then, in a matter of months, we have two wonderful new ones: TexStyles and Fabricker. I have yet visited Texstyles, because it is so far south, but I made a pilgrimage to Fabricker last week and came away with these two beauties. The blue is a lovely floral-print silk charmeuse that will probably become a Sencha blouse and the pastel is a Liberty Tana Lawn that was both beautiful and an absolute bargain. If you're an Austinite who hasn't made it to Fabricker yet, I definitely suggest it - the store is small, but brimming with lovely, quality fabrics.

 Next up are three fabrics from Harts Fabrics, which is quickly becoming my favorite online fabric retailer. Not only is their customer service superb, but they always have gorgeous fabrics for the fashion sewist. The orange ikat print and the navy anchor print are actually from the same line of Dear Stella Fabrics, which walks the line between quilting and apparel fabrics. I am just dying to turn them into summery sundresses! The blue ikat is a viscose challis, a fabric I've never worked with, but which seems to be calling for a Darling Ranges Dress.

 Finally, my favorite recent fabric score. For a span of a few days earlier this month, Fabric Mart had this Marc Jacobs cotton bow print in stock. Naturally, I snatched up four yards of it. I'm thinking it will turn into a version of this Anthropologie bicycle dress, which is one of the most worn RTW items in my closet.


On the pattern front, I made a few recent discoveries at the Austin Antique Mall. There is the woman whom my sister and I refer to as The Button Lady. She has a room just chalk full of vintage buttons, sewing notions, and patterns. For once, I had enough time to peruse her giant bookshelf of patterns and came away with three I couldn't resist - a 1960s pussy bow blouse and two 1950s shirtdresses!


Elsewhere in the antique mall, I stumbled across my favorite button find to-date. A whole card of vintage forest green Girl Scout buttons! I couldn't get them to photograph well, but they are a lovely, vibrant dark green with the Girl Scout seal on each one. The former Girl Scout in me is already hunting around for some khaki fabric, imagining a grown-up GS shirtdress.

In other news, the good folks at Burdastyle seem to have lost their minds, because my Liberty print Simplicity 2215 is the member project of the week! I know, I can't quite believe it either. I actually had to take a screen-grab of the page, just to keep as proof. Incidentally, I'm also kicking myself for adding that particular picture to the site, because every time I see it, my mother's voice yells in my brain: "Stand up straight, Mary!"  Of course, that would be the picture chosen for the front page. My mom would be mortified, but even that's not killing my Burda-fueled bliss.

Have you had any great sewing finds lately? Any fabric you just adore or a box of vintage patterns scored at an estate sale?

25 comments

  1. congrats on making front page at Burda!! The dress and you look great!

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    1. Thank you so much!! I am totally bowled over. :D

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  2. Congrats about Burda. I look forward to your bow fabric dress. Fabricmart has the best fabrics.

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    1. Thanks, Rachel! Isn't Fabricmart the best? I love how many designer shipments they get. It's always amazing to sew with something you've just seen on the runway!

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  3. Oh my goodness, I am so jealous of that Marc Jacobs fabric. It is totally adorable! Those Girl Scout buttons are a great find. I'm pretty sure I have a vintage girl scout uniform pattern around here somewhere, maybe I'll dig it up one day. Congrats on your Burdastyle feature. :]

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    1. Thanks, Rebecca! That fabric really is amazing, right? I am still shocked that it was still on Fabricmart that long. It's so adorable, I'm even a little afraid of cutting into it. ;)

      And - oh, my word - you have a vintage GS uniform pattern? That is just too cool! I would love to see it made up someday! How very neat.

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  4. I've lived in Austin for 12, almost 13 years and have never heard of the Austin Antique Mall. I am so going there tomorrow!

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    1. Oh, my gosh. Neemie, you are in for such a treat! It's definitely the best antique mall in town. Incidentally, to get to The Button Lady's room, turn left as you come in and it's straight down that aisle on the left. She also has a ton of lace, which she picked up from a lace museum that was getting rid of some of their stock. It's amazing! Have fun!

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  5. Oh my dear goodness! That Marc Jacobs fabric is lovely. I must say I'm very jealous! Cannot wait to see what you come up with :) And congratulations on Burda! Very exciting.

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    1. Isn't it amazing, Montana? I love when designer fabrics make an appearance at fabric stores! The next time I see something wonderful like this, I'll have to blog about to give everyone else notice. Thanks so much for the congratulations!!

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  6. congrats!! that dress and your pictures are completely adorable--no criticism!! so fun to see it recognized :)
    jealous of your Liberty find--anywhere i look it is something outrageous like $39-46/yd. my pockets are not that deep :(

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    1. Thanks so much, Sarah! Have you tried Ebay for buying Liberty? It's where I've bought most of my (albeit small) Liberty stash. There are quite a few UK dealers who ship internationally and sell end-of-roll Liberty cuts. They're still not super cheap, but $18/yard definitely beats the usual prices!

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  7. Houston is so fabric-lame by comparison. I have a Groupon for a couple nights in Austin. How can you get to distract my husband while I fabric shop?

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    1. Stacie, that is so sad to hear! I always fantasize that there are really great fabric stores waiting for me in Dallas an Houston, for the next time I go. What is it about TX that we can't support apparel fabric stores? We have so many darned quilt ones, after all! ;)

      Also, call me Machiavellian, but...you should come down on a UT game weekend. There are plenty of basketball games coming up...and that three hours is the perfect amount of time for you to get in some great fabric shopping.

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  8. Congratulations on being featured!
    Your fabrics are all so inspiring. What do you think of the Dear STELLA line for apparel? I've been itching to order some ever since I first came across it, but I do not want a dress with quilting cotton-like drape (or lack thereof).
    I moved to NYC recently, so of course I know there are a ton of great fabric shops to discover, I just haven't had much success yet!

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    1. Thanks, Mika! Honestly, I'm a bit torn about the Dear Stella fabrics. They aren't as stiff as most quilting cottons, but they still don't have that lovely drape of voile or a nice apparel cotton. I plan on using them for patterns where the drape won't play much of a factor, like Simplicity 2591.

      Also, can I just say how jealous I am of your move to NYC? This summer, it seemed like I was in NYC every other weekend for some publishing function or another and the best part was all the fabric shopping I was able to do! Have you tried Paron Fabrics yet? While I love Mood, of course, Paron just a few blocks over has become my favorite. They have a discount annex, which is small, but packed with amazing designer fabrics. I bought some Dior silk/linen mix for something ridiculous like $6/yard. They're also so willing to come down on fabric prices, most of the time without you even asking! It's a sewist's dream store.

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    2. I dropped in on Paron's once or twice - I think I need to do more digging, because I keep hearing about all of these great deals people got and then only finding fabric for $16/yd!
      Thanks for answering my question about dear stella. I love their prints, so I may have to bite the bullet and see what happens.

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  9. Ooh, what lovely fabrics! That bow fabric is too wonderful! It will make a wonderful dress! x

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    1. Thanks, Shivani! Isn't that bow fabric dreamy? I'm almost uneasy about using it, I love it so much!

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  10. it so cute dress, i have similar dres :) but I put lace collora on dress.. i love yours its so cute! and blog is great!

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    1. Thanks, Matea! I love the idea of putting a lace collar on a dress like this. You're a genius! I may have to try that myself. :D

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  11. congrats lady!! found your blog through burda :)

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    1. Thanks, Mandi! So glad you stumbled across it. :D

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  12. Thanks for sharing those new Austin stores. I am keeping a list of places that will be my fabric go-to when I move back.

    Congrats on your Burda front page debut!

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    1. Thanks, Melizza! When you do move back, I'd be happy to give you the details on any more stores that pop up. I'm hoping this is just the beginning of a fashion fabric renaissance in Austin.

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