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Must have pattern books

For Christmas I received two new books that I just have to share. I had purchased one book that blew my mind and found out there was one other. When mom asked what I wanted for Christmas of course my answer is this other book. Mom surprised me by finding another book from the same author that I didn’t know existed. I am in Pattern-making heaven with these three beautiful books from Tomoko Nakamichi. What’s so great is they are easy to read and follow and exploded my brain into a whole new realm of designing. Following some of these techniques I know some of my future new designs are gonna be incredible. Must have pattern books: Pattern Magic, Pattern Magic 2, and Pattern Magic Stretch Fabrics. Go get them now!  

What is Chine`?

    For Christmas I received a book entitled ‘Fashion: The Collection of the Kyoto Costume Institute; A History from the 18th to the 20th Century.’      As I have been reading through it, there have been a few terms that I had never heard of before. One of which is the word and definition of Chine` not to be confused with Chintz, or Chine` a` la Branche in French which refers to the process by which it is dyed. Groups or bundles “branches” of the warp threads are printed on before the threads are woven together. The end result is that of a watermark looking print, as if water was allowed to weep the dye up and down the fabric. Another characteristic of this print is that it is dominated by floral patterns where as the Japanese Hogushi-weaving, a type of Kasuri and Ikat (which I have heard of and is of India origins), is more likely to be of a geometric pattern. Also the Chine` patterns were mainly produced in pastel colors on a very fine silk taffeta material.      In its early production Europe had a difficult time making it so the fabric only came from French fabric houses, mainly Lyons and by early production I am talking late seventeen hundreds. To give you an idea of where in history this fabric came into vogue; Madame de Pompadour, one of fashion history’s most influential floozy’s, otherwise known as the mistress of King Louis the XV, made the fabric very popular because of her preference for it there by giving it the nick name Pompadour taffeta. Marie-Antoinette carried on the tradition of wearing the material. A Funny little fact is that Madame Pompadour’s full name was Jeanne-Antoinette Poisson, Or The Marquise de Pompadour.      Don’t you just love fashion History? A little note here, I have read and am still reading many terms and some are not all cohesive so if there is anyone who is an expert and runs across any information pertaining to these terms that does not jell with what I have found, please, please forward me anything and everything they know or have found. I will do my best to check into these and correct any misinformation of mine. There is just so much out there it is hard to get to some of the origins of things. Love the journey though.

Memorable Stitches, A Review of Nineteenth Century American Quilt Styles

Origins:   American quilts have their origin in Europe and, not surprisingly, the quilt traditions of England greatly influenced her North American colonies.  Other early settlers contributed their quilt traditions also. To understand the general development of American quilts in the nineteenth century, a look at their English roots provides insights into popular American quilt designs. The earliest quilts in England and the European continent were wholecloth quilts, made of one fabric.  Looms were not wide enough to weave fabric of sufficient width to cover a bed, so long lengths and, sometimes, smaller pieces were seamed together.  Fabric is subject to damage from use and from the environment.  As a result most of the textiles created before 1800 have not survived; however there are a few examples of quilts dating from the late 1300s, including one from Sicily. Recently an even older European quilt has been discovered.     Wholecloth quilts:   Many wholecloth quilts were made of solid colored fabrics.  The act of quilting holds the two layers of cloth and the middle batting layer together while creating designs in the fabric that can be geometric or figural.  These designs are shown to best advantage on a quilt of one solid color. Whole cloth quilts are a long-lasting trend in quilts with a few examples still being made by today’s quilters.   Traditionally England produced fabric for clothing and room furnishings using wool and linen produced on the island.  The introduction of silk from Asia into Europe created a luxury product used in personal fashion and for quilts, available only to the wealthy classes among the British.  These silk quilts, many imported from India, were wholecloth ones.     Whitework quilts, a type of wholecloth quilt:   France, particularly its city of Marseilles, was well known for its white wholecloth quilts, called broderie Marseilles.  These quilts, often called whitework today, were stuffed and corded to give emphasis to the quilting design, which often had a central focus.  They were exported in great numbers, particularly in the 1700s. Today this type of stuffed work is often called trapunto and is practiced by skilled quilters. The addition of a cord below the top layer of the quilt is rarely seen in modern quilts.   These elegant quilts were exported from Marseilles to many countries, including England and America.  American quilters produced whitework quilts, with stuffing and cording, in imitation of the French quilts.  These were particularly popular during the Federal period of furnishings in theUnited States and remained popular…
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My First Cover, extended by request.

Top: 100% Rayon $52 Pant: Wool/Silk Blend, fully lined.  $135 Jacket: 100% wool exterior, rayon lining, Sting Ray Belt, $950 Recently I was asked to use my clothes for a fashion shoot for Spokane CDA Woman Magazine.  The magazine has a regular fashion section that features local stores and designers.  For the September issue my designs were photographed and it is a great honor to be featured on the cover.  That was an unexpected little perk.   Since then Some people have taken notice.  I received a great complimentary critique from William Maltese who is  a co-host at No Boundaries Radio Show.  Thanks again William. Dress: Rouched, stretch velvet with lycra lining and crinkle georgette base, $575 Jennifer Harvey took the photo’s, and as always her photography is par excellence!  Alexandra Talbot is the model and while she is young (compared to me), she is advancing in her modeling by leaps and bounds.  I do hope this girl gets a big break in the modeling field.  And Annika Fairbanks is only in the area for a while but I am so glad to have met her and been a party to her abilities in make-up design.  Not only is she fast and efficient but pleasant to be around.  That is not always the case in this industry.  I am so lucky to have met the people I have and have been blessed by their professionalism, and willingness to give their all for a project. Dress: : High quality polyester sequined knit on top and Rayon knit jersey on bottom.  $99 Belt: hand painted Snake skin with custom metal accents.  $140 Jacket: Wool Melton lined with a quilted cotton.  Custom Metal button on front and sleeves.  $750 These clothes are unique in that, one, they are limited editions and two, in ordering these items they are custom fit to the wearer in the color that best suits the individual.   A True couture garment. There are more things to see on my web page at http://www.kirstenlonglydesigns.com/  Click on the Portfolio tab and you can see the collection to date.  Click on any of the photo’s on the main page and you can read about them. I love what I do and I do what I love.

Make your holiday dress quick and easy with Silk Knit Jersey!

One of our most popular fabrics is our Silk Knit Jersey which works well for any pattern that calls for medium stretch knit.  Over 40 colors to choose from, 60″ wide. Kirsten Longly is designing a beautiful dress combining textures and various types of fabric including our Silk Knit Jersey. This dress shows how well the silk knit jersey drapes. It is a very fluid fabric. Check out the dress in progress: www.kirstenlonglydesigns.com8/22/12 … concept was made for. There are three of these pieces in the collection each one of a differing material and slightly different make. Utilizing silk organza, rayon velvet, ruched velvet, crushed georgette and silk knit jersey.   RebbSew made her own design for a Christmas Dress and gives step by step instructions. This video shows you how to make a simple Christmas dress with silk knit jersey. the fabric i used is from Fabrics.net www.fabrics.net  

Cashmere Special Price!

Image via Flickr   Cuddle up with your cashmere throw made with real cashmere wool. Special prices created just for you just in time for holiday gifts! Two yards of cashmere equals a 72 by 60 inch throw big enough for a family. One yard equals a 36 by 60 inch throw. Just round off the corners using a bowl for a pattern then finish the edges with a serger or blanket stitch using contrasting thread or matching thread.   Imagine a cashmere shrug to warm your winter day. Use a pattern from one of the pattern companies or online directions like the “How to..” examples that are found on YouTube. HOW TO SEW EASY SUMMER BOLERO, SHRUG,CARDIGAN AND CAPE www.meshalo.com www.etsy.com Join My LIVE SEWING CLASS beta.powhow.com www.meshalo.blogspot.com twitter.com youtube Tglashen youtube MeshalofashionTV youtube Meshalostyletv facebook Meshalo Glashen Another shrug for your cashmere fabric, this one by Meshalo Glashen. How to Make a Shrug www.meshalo.etsy.com Join My LIVE SEWING CLASS beta.powhow.com www.meshalo.blogspot.com www.meshalofashion.wordpress.com www.meshalopinupgirl.wordpress.com youtube Tglashen youtube MeshalofashionTV facebook Meshalo Glashen facebook Meshalo fashion Enjoy!

Help is here for Shocking Static Electricity

Image via Flickr   Living in the beautiful North West where heat during the winter months produces low humidity in homes and results in static electricity on clothes and other textiles, I needed help.  Because of allergies I was unable to use fabric softener or dryer sheets and StaticGuard which I was using added chemicals to the garment and to the air I breathe.  I had read about plastic dryer balls but this wasn’t the answer either as it distributed fabric softener to the clothes and the inside of the dryer drum.  Enter Wool Dryer Balls.   I had read about wool dryer balls on other websites but before I recommend a product, I like to test to see if the product performs as advertised.  I ordered the Wool Dryer Balls from Stoney Mountain Farms who recommended washing the dryer balls inside an old sock in a regular wash load every few months to recharge.  Neither chlorine nor oxygen bleach should be used when washing the wool dryer balls because each of these products will damage wool fibers.  After drying the dryer balls, I pinned two small safely pins to one wool dryer ball to increase the release of static electricity.   I LOVE PolarFleece by Malden Mills but the static electricity on these blankets can be pretty bad.  Malden Mills recommends that no softener or dryer sheets be used on any of the PolarFleece fabrics as those products coat the fibers and change the characteristics of the fabric.  I am happy to report that the wool dryer balls took the static electricity out of my PolarFleece blankets.   An added benefit of the wool dryer balls is that clothes dry faster and have fewer wrinkles because of the “fluffing” by the dryer balls.  There are differing opinions about how many dryer balls to use.  My opinion is that the number required would depend on the size of the dryer loads.  Three wool dryer balls for small loads and 6 or more for large loads.   I love it when products perform as advertised!