1 May 2017

Making a Dress - Modern Jeogori


Lately I have been staring at modern hanbok,

Don't they look refreshing and light.  Probably completely inappropriate for the summer here in UK but they are so pretty.  Not to mention perfect for a work capsule wardrobe.

So what should I aim for?  On Leesle site there are plenty to choose from but I when for something simple and chic.


It seems the basic elements of a modern hanbok is the jeogori (or jacket) and the chima (or dress).

However which one to make first?

I decided that since the chima/dress of a modern hanbok looks like a simpler make, I would tackle the jacket first.

I have to admit, I am not good at making jackets and the first decent one I made was the navy blue polka dot loose sack dress/jacket I made last time.

Therefore like a good cheat I used this pattern as a base.

So I followed the pattern around the armscye part as that is the hardest part for me and I found polka dot jacket was very comfortable.

Now rather then cutting it like in the picture I extended the line down from the bottom of the armscye by 13cms to create a short little jacket.  Then I create the front pattern to create an crossover.

Now I pinned the paper pattern to my Miffy 2 and added a collar.  What I didn't take a picture of is the issues I found.  The summary is that I could not create the collar I wanted with the back neck curve.

If I looked at the pattern for making a traditional jeogori, this would be straight and when I look at this picture below, it seems the back part is straight so I thought why not give it a go.

So I re-drew the back piece with a straight back neck.

Mockup time.

Hmmm so far so good.

Oh maybe a little care is need when I join the collar to the shoulder seam.

However it looks like I have a pattern.


I was going to make this a lined jacket as I had some multicoloured polycotton in my sewing room taking up space but then I remembered my remaining stash of fleece.  As this is going to be a work wardrobe I might as well make something from that.  I do love wearing a fleece as I hate cold arms.

Also it would mean I don't have to line it!


Okay time to bite the bullet and make this.

Going well.

Oh good this has worked out nicely.

And this is where the WIP photos ended because the rest is just attaching the arms and hemming the bottom seam.


Not bad at all!  Almost like the jeogori in the picture.

Looking nice and smooth

Oh and as I had some ribbon with hearts, I thought that would be nice to use as a tie for the otherwise black little jacket.


Overall I am very happy with it, I can certainly wear it to work and it is nice and cosy but of course there are things I would like to change.

One, taper the sides a little.  On closer inspection of the original jacket, the sides are not straight down but taper in slightly to the waist.

Two,again closer look on the collar, there is a slight curve on the collar but only slightly.  This might mean I will need to re-design the collar but this curve is similar to the one I normally sew on a kimono so maybe it might not be too hard to incorporate.

Three, lengthen the bodice a bit more.  This is a bit short for my liking but it is still okay.  I will just have to look at it as a bolero jacket.

3 April 2017

Making a Dress - Navy spotted Lolita Sack Dress

I promised during my hiatus on blogging I have been sewing.  

This was the dress I made before I completed the lolita apron dress.


For some reason, I wanted to make a loose lolita dress.  I had the idea of making a dress which I could wear under any overdress or skirt.  So it had to be made from durable fabric which was not too fussy.


As every Otome no Sewing comes to the rescue and this time it is book 6.



I didn't have a fabric in my collection which would be suitable for making this dress and I thought it would be one of those projects where I would be looking for the fabric for a long time.

However luck would have it, one of my favourite haberdashery shops in Belfast was selling some cotton fabric and one just stood out from the rest.

It was a lovely herringbone weave cotton with white dots printed on top.  It was lovely and I brought the remaining 3 metres of it without battering an eye.

Funny thing is that it was only when I got home when I realised that the fabric was similar to the one used in the book.  Clearly a sign!


Yeah no photos I'm afraid.  Was just too excited to make it.


Yeah one sack dress!

This is the first dress I made which has such a high "waist" line.  I thought it would make me look pregnant but it didn't.  Maybe it is the overall look that helped.

Unlike any of my other lolita dress, no bow!

Lovely sailor collar.

I was quite please with my cornering skills.

Pockets because we can't live without them.

Sleeve details.  Just the cotton trim something simple but very striking.

The original design was a bit too short for my liking and it didn't occur to me during pattern drafting that this needed to be lengthen so I went with the easy option and added some frills. 

Which was a good choice as I think it made it less look like a pregnancy dress.

Once I finished making the dress, it dawned on me that it also makes a lovely summer jacket.  So this this actually the most useful clothing item I have made to date.

2 April 2017

Making a Dress - Lolita Apron Dress

It has been too long!

Really it has and I have no real excuse but sewing, games and kanzashi have been taking up a lot of my time and unfortunately I always get carried away and forget to update you lot.

So start now I will do my best to report on each of my new creations whether it is sewing, kanzashi or kimono.

So today I have for you my latest sewing project completed today.


Continuing on with my aim to make a lolita work wardrobe I have decided it is time to make another apron style JSK.  They are very versatile as they can be paired with any of my work shirts and are very comfortable.

As always my Otome no Sewing mooks have come through and I have found the one I will based my JSK on.

As this is for work, I omitted the shoulder frills, lace and pintucks along the bottom.  I wanted this to me nice and simple so it could be worn often and it can be washed easily.


Finally I am able to make a little dent in my fabric hoard and I decided on a nice grey with shots of red kimono bolt.

There is a faint floral pattern woven into the fabric as well which make it a little more interesting.


As with all my dresses made from kimono bolt is the width of the fabric.  Luckily the bodice pieces all fit perfectly and although the pattern calls for a circle skirt I went a rectangle skirt to make things easier (oh famous last words).

 Here are pockets and bodice pieces on the fabric.

And here is where the construction photos ends.  I always end ups sewing in the afternoon and the lighting in my flat is terrible so photos are the last thing on my mind.

I will try better in the future.

Finished Dress

Here it is!

Isn't is dainty?

As I used no trimmings on the dress I decided it was a good time to practice my topstitching.  I used red thread to complement the red in the fabric.

As always a lovely bow is needed.

I may have made it a little small on the waist but I had just had my lunch so maybe that is the reason for it being tight?  Well it is a good enough excuse.

And I can't live without pockets so this one just had to have them as well.

Now time to look at my to-do list and tick some things off.

5 August 2016

Summer break with family and Pom-Pom mania

It is my annual summer visit to my family and normally I would go back home for a week with nothing to do.

But not this time as I have a new book!

Pom-pom animal head!!!

Perfect hobby for travelling since all I need to bring with me is a pair of scissors and the pom-pom maker and I can buy the wool when I'm home.

I had some wool in my flat so I had to practice making a couple of pom-pom to see how tightly I need to wind the wool.  Therefore once I had the chance to go Hobbycraft I went wool shopping.

Brought 3 colours, black, pale blue and pale yellow but on the same day, my mother-in-law took me to a local knitting shop to find some specific wool for a bichon frise.

The first thing I had to make was a sootball from the Ghibli Animations.

Then I thought, I might as well bite the bullet and start on the bichon frise called Bertie.  The wool I used is a lot thicker then the one recommended in the book so I thought the best course of action is the wind it as tightly as possible to get it as much wool as possible.  Then two smaller pom-pom for the ears.

Now a little bit of trimming and felting and volia!  We have a Bertie.

However it didn't look right to me so I thought I would make a second one and made it with a more of a nose.

This time it looked a bit more like a doggie.

I will have plenty of wool left to make another one which I probably will.

27 July 2016

More pom pom fun.

Since I had a week to kill, I made a few more pom pom animals.

Next was a little sheep.

It was a cute thing to make from the book and relatively easy compared with Bertie.

And since I had plenty of the wool remaining from Bertie, I though I should made the first thing in the book which was a teddy bear.

He turn out quite big and fluffy.

So far my little pom pom collection looks like this.

There are actually a lot more sootballs but they are hanging from a lampshade in the lounge.

However I still had loads of googly eye from the sootballs.  What could I make to use them up?  Oh yes a little spider with eight eyes. 

Isn't she sweet!  I even sewed a little string so she can hang downwards.  

Well I'll be going back to Belfast the next day so that is the end of my pom pom adventure for now.  I must make another Bertie as I feel there is a lack of cuteness to the ones I made, I'm sure I will get there.

29 June 2016

New obi for furisode musubi playtime.

So I have begun playing with musubi that are normally tied for furisode at Coming of Age day.

However the obi I have at the moment are not suitable.

They are heavily woven with metallic thread which makes them perfect for a formal otaiko but rubbish for those fancy musubi.

So it was time to do a little bit of hunting.

I asked a friend what would be a good search term for these special obi and she recommended I search for "furisode obi" so off to the internet.

First stop Rakuten, and although I found what I was looking for, they were pretty expensive so I went back to my usual shopping channel eBay.

There is one seller who I thought would have what I wanted and sure enough I was lucky to find them.

Here is the one I chose.

It is a pretty rainbow obi which should be okay with some of my more fancy kimono but it is very soft and flexible.  Perfect!

However while I was browsing, something caught my eye.


Isn't it pretty!
Blank part of the fukuro obi

At first glance it looks like a standard fukuro obi but!!!

It is split into two at one end!

 This is the underside of the obi but in between the split is this orange part.

How weird is this obi?  So of course I brought it and now I am thinking of musubi to tie with it.