Monday, August 1, 2011

Summer Sewing

I recently spent some time at my sister's cottage with my mother and 2 sisters. Here is the project we worked on The Evening Mist Bag #17.A great summer project and a new knitting bag for me! I added touches of leather to my bag. I had some leather that was a perfe
ct match and designed these leather handles that incorporated some of the quilted fabric.

Out of the remainder of the skin, I made an accessory wallet using the pattern found on my Sewing Leather CD.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

A Show of Hands!

We have just finished a 5 day Glove workshop at The Academy. Making gloves is so much fun! The students had a great time and their finished gloves turned out perfect!

I was able to find a source for world famous Pittards glove leather. The hand stitched gloves are so soft, they feel like butter! Students custom fitted their patterns and learned how to assemble gloves completely by hand.

Handbag designer Amy Steele attended the workshop and hopes to soon expand her line to carry gloves.

The workshop was so successful that I intend to offer it again in 2012.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Gloves, gloves, gloves

Next week is the start of a 5 day Couture Glove workshop. I have purchased fabulous skins for the students to make their custom fitted, hand stitched gloves from. I was able to find a good selection of glove leathers by Pittards, a renowned English glove leather producer. There is also some slink, or shearling to make warm winter gloves. Here are some of the samples I have been working on. I will post photos of the student's finished gloves later next week.

Reversible Tote

Metallics are so hot right now! Here is a reversible leather tote I made up from a skin I purchased recently in New York. One side is brown, the other is metallic silvery brown. I made a small wallet with a cell phone holder and zippered pocket. All hardware is a gunmetal color. I drafted the pattern myself. Perfect for summer!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Koos van den Akker

I am just back from the Springtime in NY trip. NY is always inspiring! The trip includes fabric, button and trim shopping, visits to museums, designers and Soho. We had a great group this year. All came away with tons of inspiration.

Here are photos of our visit to meet Koos van den Akker. Koos is so creative! Always coming up with new ideas and techniques. His garments appeal to women of all ages. Koos will be coming to The Academy of fine Sewing & Design Sept. 7-11 to lead a 5 day workshop. Contact The Academy for more information and registration forms.

Koos was creating a new caftan which one of the young students modelled and here I am wearing a fabulous taffeta tulip scarf.

Jon Moore Couture Jacket workshop

The Jon Moore Couture Jacket workshop was a huge success! Students loved Jon's technique for working the collar and notched lapel. The jackets looked terrific come day five!
Jon will be returning again next year for a Trouser workshop.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Couture Tailoring with Jon Moore

Today is day one of a five day Couture Tailoring workshop with Jon Moore of London, England. Students accomplished a lot as they began work on their jacket fronts. Their softly tailored jackets will have a lot of built in shape. Pad stitching is used on the reveres and the edges were taped. Tomorrow we will begin the facings and collars. By the end of the week, students will be inserting the lining by hand.
This is my sample made from a beautiful piece of Donegal Tweed purchased on our Paris/London trip last year. Jon worked up a sample out of English Tweed for the students to reference.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Custom Made Buttons and Machine Knitting

I recently attended a machine knitting workshop with Carolyn Barnett of Kingston, ON. Carolyn does wonderful machine knit sweaters with custom made buttons
Here is my first machine knit sweater. It has an asymmetrical hemline with contrasting hem and sleeve facings. It is made from fine merino wool. I made buttons to embellish it as well as several other buttons for future projects.

Carolyn will be coming to North Bay to teach a one day button making workshop and an introduction to machine knitting workshop. For more information contact my daughter's yarn shop Stix and Stones 705-223-8245.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Koos van den Akker V1213

I finished Koos' new coat pattern Vogue 1213 for my recent visit to New York City. The coat was a big hit, receiving compliments everywhere I wore it!

This was a very fun project to plan and put together. I shopped for most of the fabrics in my stash. I used a black fabric with wool boucle plaid, a grey boiled wool which had black lace fused to it, a black and blue menswear houndstooth, a flocked denim from France purchased from and a wool purchased from that I was able to
use on both sides. One side was bright royal blue and the other was a grey boucle. I used this fabric for the two fronts. The Italian buttons were purchased from The planning was as much fun as the sewing!

I did hand picked topstitching on all edges. To add warmth, I used a flannel backed Kasha satin lining. I added a full lining to the sleeves and a piece of chamois to the back to cut the wind.

Koos approved! Here is a photo of us in his NY studio. Koos is one of the most creative people I know. He will be returning to The Academy of fine Sewing & Design to teach a 5 day workshop in September 2011. Visit for more information.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Little Black Dress Project with Jon Moore

The Academy of fine Sewing & Design hosted a Little Black workshop with guest instructor Jon Moore of London, England.

Students draped the beautiful, lightweight wool crepe directly on their dress stand. Each dress was unique and fit perfectly! The garment was underlined and lined in silk.

Couture techniques, which involve a lot of handwork were taught. We created the atmoshphere of a couture workroom where students sat at two large tables to work on their hand sewing skills.

Jon is a couturier who is passionate about preserving and sharing his skills. He will be returning to the Academy again in May 2011 to teach two Couture Tailoring workshops. Visit for more information and a registration form

Free Form Ensemble from Verena

Several people have been patiently waiting for me to post pictures of the Free Form Ensemble I finished knitting this past fall. The over dress was designed by Margery Winter for the Spring 2010 issue of Verena knitting magazine. I fell in love with the tunic and put together the main colours which were knit from Filatura Di Crosa Luxury 100% silk yarn and the narrow stripe from Berroco Oragami yarn.
This was a very fun project to knit! It is called a Free Form Ensemble because you drape the garment as you knit it. The hem is sewn up here and there and various stitches are used throughout.
I made the plain black dress to wear underneath from a knit fabric sewn out of a DKNY pattern Vogue 2091. The neckline is cut quite low but it was perfect to show off the open knit of the tunic. I found the perfect black and cream shoes to wear with the outfit!
I wore the outfit to an evening cocktail party at Vogue Knitting Live held in New York City last month. The woman behind me in the entrance line up was Mari Lynn Patrick, who had written the pattern for the magazine! She enjoyed seeing the tunic made up.