Tag Archives: fashion

Nancy’s does Me-Made-May ’16 – days 25-31

June has arrived and, though we are thrilled for the arrival of summer, we are a little sad to see May go.

We had so much fun participating in Me-Made-May! It is, truly, one of my favorite things we’ve ever done as a store. Thanks to all of you for helping to make it such an enjoyable event!

NSB - header MMMay16 days 25-31

Day 25:

Tamara wore three handmade pieces: a coat sewn in linen/cotton suiting, a knit top, and a silk crepe-de-chine skirt! The pattern for her topper is the Palvi, from Lotta Jansdotter’s book Everyday Style. She drafted both her shirt and skirt patterns.

Ellen also donned a trio of handmade garments! Her round-neck coat pattern is from Casual Sweet Clothes: Favorite Pieces for Every Day by Noriko Sasahara; she used a linen/cotton Ikat, a perfect fabric pairing for the simple silhouette. Her top and pants are the Mimosa ensemble from Sewing Workshop, which she sewed up in yarn-dyed linen/cotton.

Kristina wore a second iteration of the Kiomi tunic and a knit tube skirt of her own design. For this version of the Kiomi (originally a dress pattern in Lotta Jansdotter’s Everyday Style), she used washed silk dupioni and created a hi-low hemline. The effect is cool and elegant. Her tube skirt is rayon/spandex jersey; a similar pattern is KwikSew #3765.

Jessica wore a button-down shirt with Peter Pan collar of her own design. She used plaid linen/cotton for a perfect picnic look! Though the pattern for this shirt is unavailable (she drafted it herself), Burda #6840 has similar details.


Day 26:

Ellen was ready for the weekend in her cropped jacket, which she sewed up in a cotton with crewel-work details! Pattern is #009 from Betsy Ross, which is, sadly, no longer in business. For a similar look, try Vogue #9190.

Jessica prepped for the weekend in a restyled vintage skirt! Longer, pleated and a touch too small from when it was purchased twelve years ago, she breathed new life into the skirt her scissors and sewing machine. For a similar pattern, try KwikSew #3794.


Days 27 & 28:

Sadly, we did not have a chance to take photos on either day 😦


Day 29:

Kitrina wore a pleated cotton piqué skirt with petersham ribbon details at the waist and alençon lace trim at the hem. The original Burda pattern is now discontinued; try Butterick #5756 for a similar pleated skirt pattern.

Kristina paired her asymmetrical Kiomi tunic with her favorite straight skirt (McCall’s #3830). The hi-low hemline of her tunic perfectly showed off the border print of her skirt!

Jessica wore a boldly patterned silk/cotton lawn dress. She used Simplicity pattern #2497 (now discontinued) featuring a ruffled neckline and blouson details at the waistline. For a similar-but-updated silhouette, try Vogue #1343.


Day 30:

Kitrina wore a fabulous dress with a draped collar and sash. She sewed the now-discontinued Vogue pattern out of yarn-dyed polyester suiting. For a comparable style, try Butterick #5850.

Ellen got ready to bid adieu to me-made-May by sewing up the Betsy Ross Cropped Jacket pattern with a fabric that she’d had in her stash for at least 15 years! The simplicity of the jacket style was perfectly paired with the yarn-dyed beaded linen. Though the Betsy Ross pattern company in no longer around, try Vogue #9190.

Jessica wore the matte jersey dress she discussed in our post on planning for me-made-May. She used the bold print to make a pattern from the BurdaStyle S/S 2016 plus size special magazine (pattern 417B), a casual dress with cocoon silhouette and draped armholes. For additional coverage, she lined the dress, and added openings to the sides seams for a ribbon sash.


Day 31:

For the final day of me-made-May, Tamara wore a striped tee-shirt style dress paired with a printed cotton lawn overdress. The knit dress, made of rayon/spandex jersey and bound with fold-over elastic, is McCall’s pattern #6612. Her Japanese lawn dress is the same Marcy Tilton pattern from day 11, Vogue #8876.

Izzie, our resident milliner, wore a summer straw hat of her own creation! She used sinamay straw and vintage trimmings for the perfect look! If you are in the Seattle area this weekend, Izzie will be showing her hats at a trunk sale at the Beppa store; be sure to check it out!

And for a final me-made-May farewell, Jessica ended the month in the same dress from the first day, her favorite Decades of Style pattern, #2003 1920s Hazel’s Frock. For something new, she added a handmade straw braid hat, which she made in classes with Izzie and trimmed with millinery flora from our Ribbon Room!


Thanks again for joining us for Me-Made-May! We had a blast participating and look forward to doing it again next year!

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Nancy’s does Me-Made-May ’16 – days 19-24

How quickly is this month zooming by? It’s hard to believe the unofficial start of summer is nearly here!

Our celebration of all things handmade is still going strong, and we are so appreciative of our staff’s willingness to play along. Let’s see what the Nancy’s employees wore on days 19 through 24!

NSB - header MMMay16 days 19-24

Day 19:

Ellen wore a blouse made of lightweight linen with a pale blue stripe. The now-discontinued Marcy Tilton pattern from Vogue (style 8709) features alternate grainlines on the different pieces, which are enhanced by the stripe in Ellen’s fabric.

Jessica wore her latest version of Decades of Style pattern #2003 1920s Hazel’s Frock. For this rendition, she left off all the scarves, added a slight A-line to the silhouette, and shortened it for an easy summer shift!


Day 20:

Jeannie did a little print mixing, combining a rayon challis skirt and a top made of polyester with metallic sheen. Her top is the beloved Scout Tee from Grainline Studios with a modified sleeve. She used Butterick #4136 for her six-gore skirt.


Day 21:

The good news is that we were so busy on the twenty-first that we were (sad news) unable to take photos of employee ensembles.


Day 22:

The twenty-second was unofficially our “bold patterned skirt” day. Kristina celebrated by wearing her bias-cut Tedra skirt with her Kiomi dress-turned-tunic (both patterns from Lotta Jansdotter’s book Everyday Style). Her skirt was made from 1″ black-and-white cotton gingham (trimmed with red bias tape) and her tunic from lightweight red rayon challis.

Jessica wore a four-gore eyelet skirt with bold coral polka dots! This pattern is one of the projects from our fantastic Absolute Beginning Construction class, which is intended for sewers with little-to-know sewing experience! The pattern is exclusive to our class, but Burda 6818 is a similar style!


Day 23:

Continuing the multi-gore mini-theme of this post, Kitrina wore an eight-gore skirt made of polyester crepe. She scalloped the bottom of each panel and enhanced the style lines with white pick-stitching. The original pattern is now discontinued, try Butterick #6179 for the same silhouette!

Ellen looked lovely in a jacket made of lightweight denim, lined with printed cotton lawn. The pattern, Vogue #9096, features five curved panels on the right front side.

Jessica wore a circle skirt made with one of our favorite fabrics, a lightweight ponte double-knit! She drafted the skirt using the classic formula for a full circle skirt, attaching it to an easy, curved waistband. If drafting your own pattern sounds daunting, try KwikSew #3637 for a comparable look.


Day 24:

Ellen wore a swingy jacket, style D from the book Casual Sweet Clothes: Favorite Pieces for Every Day by Noriko Sashara. She used the coolest wool crepe with dimensional embroidery, a designer end piece from Prada.

Izzie wore a beautiful silk dress and a hat of her own creation. Her dress, Vintage Vogue pattern #8728, was made with fabric from Anna Sui. She stitched her hat from straw braid and trimmed it with ribbons and millinery flora from our Ribbon Room.

Jessica wore a top of her own design, made from a lovely bamboo rayon jersey. The shirt features a bateau neckline in the front and a deep-V in the back. Jessica draped her top on her dressform; if you don’t have a form of your own, try KwikSew #4174 for a similar base pattern!


Thanks so much for joining us for our third round-up of Me-Made-Makes!

Join us next week for the final installment!

Nancy’s does Me-Made-May ’16 – days 13-18

It is hard to believe we are more than halfway through May! Where does the time go?

Our round-up of staff-made garments is much shorter this time (and skips a couple days when we didn’t get pictures), but still full of great makes. Let’s get started!

NSB - header MMMay16 days 13-18

Day 13:

Jeannie wore an ensemble of handmade garments, consisting of a dress and topper. Her dress began as a Scout Tee, the fantastic pattern from Grainline Studio. Jeannie made a few alterations to the pattern, including scooping in the body through the waist and lengthening the sleeve, and then added two gathered tiers to create a skirt. She used an incredibly soft linen for this dress, which has the perfect weight and drape to compliment the style. Jeannie’s topper is KwikSew pattern #4104; she used a lovely printed linen/viscose for the body and lined it with rayon/acetate satin, making this an ideal spring coat!


Day 14:

Sadly, we forgot to take pictures this day 😦


Day 15:

Kitrina wore a wool bouclé jacket featuring cool antique silver buttons on a placket of layered petersham ribbon and a restyled knit top. Sadly, the original jacket pattern from Vogue is now discontinued; try Butterick #5235 for a similar look!

Kristina wore a rayon tunic and novelty print cotton skirt. Her top is the Kiomi dress-turned-tunic style, taken from Lotta Jansdotter’s book Everyday Style. She used her favorite straight skirt pattern (McCall’s #3830), which perfectly features the Frida Kahlo-inspired border print!

Jessica wore the simplest iteration of her favorite pattern from Decades of Style, #2003 1920s Hazel’s Frock. For this version of the dress, she used a cotton/rayon/nylon jacquard and left off all the scarves from the original design, for a look that is as modern as it is vintage. She also finished the bias trim at the neck and armholes to the outside, using the reverse of the fabric as face, and hemmed the skirt to the outside, for a simple, graphic look.


Day 16:

Whoopsy! We forgot to take photos on this day, too!


Day 17:

On the seventeenth, Tamara wore a knit top and woven skirt. She used KwikSew pattern #4027, altering the neckline, to make this rayon/spandex top in navy heather. Her pleated skirt, a self-drafted pattern inspired by a Japanese style, was made out of the coolest fabric: a yarn-dyed plaid canvas over-dyed in black, which fades with every wash to reveal more of the plaid.

Izzie joined in on the Me-Made-May fun, wearing a handmade wool tunic and a straw hat of her own design! The pattern for her top is the Schoolhouse Tunic from Sew Liberated designs. You may recognize her hat from our post on trimming hats for the Kentucky Derby!

Jessica wore her newest, most summery version of the beloved E.S.P. dress (Decades Everyday #101). Made of striped Italian cotton/linen shirting, this dress features a longer, pleated skirt and stripe play. Do you remember this dress from our post about Decades of Style patterns for spring?


Day 18:

Tamara wore a bright and cheery skirt made of Charley Harper print organic cotton canvas. She drafted the skirt pattern, which features pleats that hang from a yoke. For a similar pattern, try McCall’s #7022!

Did you have a premonition about Jessica’s me-made-make for the eighteenth? She wore another version of the E.S.P. dress from Decades of Style (Decades Everyday #101)! This time, she used cotton lawn in a yarn-dyed plaid, just perfect for a picnic!


We hope you enjoyed this installment of our Me-Made-Makes! Join us next time; we promise not to skip so many days again! Or simply follow us on Instagram to see our outfits every day 🙂

Nancy’s does Me-Made-May ’16 – days 1-12

We are having a blast with Me-Made-May! It is so much fun to see the sewing community sharing their makes, everyday, and even more fun to partake.

NSB - MMMay16 days 1-12 header

This is a loooonnnng post, so without further ado, here is a round-up of Nancy’s staff during the first twelve days of Me-Made-May!

Day 1:

Helping us kick off the event, Kitrina wore a tunic made with KwikSew pattern #3601. She sewed it up in polyester georgette featuring multi-colored polka dots!

Jessica wore a modified version of her favorite Decades of Style pattern, #2003 1920s Hazel’s Frock. She used the skirt-scarf pattern from the original look inserted in the side seams to create a handkerchief hem and sewed the dress from a rayon/nylon blend with fabulous drape.


Day 2:

Ellen wore a linen jacket made from a now-discontinued Butterick pattern. The style has handy patch pockets and a cool, draped lapel that features the selvedge of the fabric! For a similar look, try McCall’s #7200.


Day 3:

Tamara wore a silk crepe-de-chine skirt and knit top with a modified neckline. The original skirt pattern, now discontinued from Vogue patterns, boasts a full circle silhouette on a yoke; luckily, KwikSew #3637 is currently available and very similar! Tamara used KwikSew #3766 for the top, modifying the neckline to a bateau.

For the third day, Jessica wore a blouse made of printed silk crepe-de-chine, made from Decades of Style pattern #5003, the 1950s Collar Confection blouse. This blouse style has a sweet draped collar and shaped, vented short sleeve.


Day 4:

On May the fourth, Tamara wore her Given a Chance dress, pattern #102 from Decades of Style‘s microline Decades Everyday! She sewed up the dress in a Japanese cotton dobby, featuring pixelated renditions of Japanese landmarks. You may recognize the dress from our post on spring clothes made with Decades of Style patterns.

Kristina wore her newly finished bias-cut Tedra skirt, made from 1″ black & white cotton gingham and bound at the hem with red bias tape. The skirt pattern is from the book Everyday Style by Lotta Jansdotter. We mentioned this skirt in our Planning for MMMay16 post, as a project Kristina was working on. Way to go, Kristina!

Jessica wore Decades of Style pattern #5008, the PB&J skirt. This 1950s style features bias-cut side panels, double pleats, and nautical button detailing. Jessica used a striped polyester/rayon/spandex suiting to enhance the alternating grainlines and added vintage German glass buttons for extra flair. Ahoy!


Day 5:

Kitrina wore a modified version of the same KwikSew tunic, this time featuring a hi-lo hemline and princess seams. Her fabric choice, a floral print polyester georgette, looks perfectly breezy in the modified silhouette!

Ellen wore a swingy tunic, sewn up in a rayon/linen blend. She used Butterick pattern #6099, which features inverted pleats at the bust, a functional button placket, and collar variations.

Kristina wore an easy a-line skirt, Vogue pattern #9063. She sewed up the pattern in a lovely printed cotton lawn, similar in hand to Liberty’s Tana lawn, but priced much more accessibly!

Jessica wore her version of the Three’s a Charm jacket, pattern #103 from Decades of Style! Made in a Japanese printed cotton/linen canvas, this easy-to-make and easier to wear third piece features stylized darts in a cute silhouette! Learn more about this jacket, and see a second sample, over here!


Day 6:

Tamara wore a handmade ensemble on the sixth. Her coat comes from the Japenese pattern book Happy Handmade Sew Chic by Yoshiko Tsukiori and she worked it up in a soft linen. The skirt was patterned off a store-bought style; she layered a beautiful black border lace over an Anna Maria Horner printed cotton broadcloth for an elegant, but easy wardrobe addition. For a similar skirt style, try KwikSew pattern #3877.

Jeannie wore a silk plaid dupioni wrap skirt, made with McCall’s #5430, and carried two handmade bags! The larger, striped canvas bag is from Lotta Jansdotter’s book Everyday Style. Her green ultrasuede bag is the Hatoto pattern from the blog Yoshimi the Flying Squirrel.


Day 7:

Rounding out the first week, Ellen wore the Gallery Tunic from Liesl & Co. She sewed it up in a soft cotton plaid broadcloth.


Day 8:

On Mother’s Day, Kitrina looked incredibly lovely in an ensemble from Decades of Style. Her printed silk blouse is pattern #2502, the 1952 Wrap Blouse, which features a true wrap front and two buttons at the yoke. Enhancing the style is pattern #4006, the 1940s Arches Skirt, which she sewed up in wool twill.

Kristina wore her go-to straight skirt pattern, McCall’s #3830. She used a cute novelty print (Mice on Bikes from Lizzy House) and bound the hemline in contrasting turquoise bias tape.

Jessica wore her other favorite Decades of Style pattern: Decades Everyday #101, the E.S.P. dress! The dress is a classic fit-and-flare style with raglan sleeves and she’s made it many times. This version was made with Liberty Tana lawn; read more about it on her blog post!


Day 9:

Ellen donned a great jacket on the ninth day: Pearl from Sewing Workshop. This style features an easy silhouette with drawcord detail at the neckline for the addition of ruching. She used a lightweight polyester, making this the perfect casual spring jacket.


Day 10:

Tamara wore an easy blouse featuring a keyhole neckline with tie closure and deep side vents, which she made from printed silk crepe-de-chine. She also wore a ponte knit skirt, modeled after a store bought style. Sadly, the original Vogue blouse pattern is now discontinued; for a similar look, try McCall’s #7248 or Kitrina’s favorite tunic style, KwikSew #3601.

On the tenth, Jessica wore her inspired by the runway dress. Modeled after a Bottega Veneta style that retailed for $11,000, her version features lace layered over a digital print rayon challis and geometric lace trim at the armhole. She used Burda pattern #6914 to achieve the silhouette with a gentle cocoon shape.


Day 11:

Tamara wore a dress made with a border print cotton lawn. In cutting out the pattern (Vogue #8876), she found she didn’t have quite enough of the print to construct the dress with the border running along the hemline. Ingeniously, Tamara reworked the pattern and achieved a very cool look!

Ellen had plans to attend a Seattle Mariner’s game after work, so she showed off her team spirit and her sewing skills, by wearing a blouse constructed in cotton lawn, boasting the M’s colors! She used Vogue #8927 for this easy-going great shirt.

Kristina wore a self-drafted a-line skirt, sewn up in lovely, easy-to-wear rayon/linen. Try McCall’s #7197 for a similar pattern!

Jessica also wore a self-drafted skirt, this time a dirndl silhouette, featuring an embroidered-border calico cotton. For a similar pattern, try KwikSew #3794.


Day 12:

On the twelfth day, Ellen wore Anne Klein tunic pattern #1509 from Vogue. She sewed it up in a printed cotton double gauze, proving this style looks good in casual and dressy fabrications!

Kristina wore two patterns from Lotta Jansdotter’s Everyday Style. She shorted the Kiomi dress pattern into a tunic length and sewed it up in rayon challis for the perfect breezy summer top. She used washed cotton ticking to make the Owyn pant pattern, for a casual pant style.

Jessica wore a jacket of her own design that she originally created for the Great Jacket Challenge of 2009. The challenge was performed by the staff at Nancy’s for our 31st Anniversary Sale, wherein participating staff used Vogue pattern #1036 (now discontinued) as a base to make a jacket of their choosing. Jessica’s version, with a high-peplum waist and double-breast closure, was constructed of boldly striped cotton canvas.


Wow – that was a long round-up! If you made it this far, thanks for sticking it out until the end! We are sharing our me-made-makes everyday on our Instagram (you can find them directly here), if you would like to see them on the daily. Our next round-ups won’t be nearly this extensive, but just as enjoyable! See you next time!

Inspired – Nancy’s takes on the runway!

Our anniversary sale has come to an end, but I am excited to share with you all of the runway-inspired looks that were created by Nancy’s talented staff.

NSBxRW header

Every year, the staff is given opportunity to make model garments to display during the anniversary sale. In past years, we have followed different themes: one year, everyone used the same jacket pattern and altered it to create completely different looks; another year, everyone made a frock. For the last few years, we have been inspired by the amazing fashions that walk down the runway – and attempted to recreate looks for fractions of their retail prices!

This year, the designers that inspired us are Bottega Veneta, Dolce & Gabbana, Dries Van Noten, Marc Jacobs, The Row, and Tibi. Let’s take a look at the original inspirations, talk about the fabrics and patterns used to create our own looks, and see the finished garments!


Marilyn was inspired by this Dries Van Noten jacket, shown here styled by Barneys New York.

To create her version of this jacket, Marilyn started with KwikSew 3764, which is the pattern used in the Motorcycle Jacket class taught by Jacque Goldsmith. She altered the pattern to add length, make the collar bigger, and create a two-piece sleeve.

For fabric, Marilyn used a 100% polyester jacquard for the body and African Mongolian faux fur for the collar. She underlined the jacquard with 100% cotton flannel and lined the jacket using a warm back winter lining.

NSB - MNxDVN jacketNSB - MNxDVN collar

The original Dries Van Noten jacket retails for $1,745. Marilyn made hers for $103!


Jeannie wanted to make a ‘tribute’ dress based on Dolce & Gabbana’s “Viva la Mamma!” collection.

She used McCalls 5927, a now out-of-print pattern, which features a fitted bodice and skirt with pleat detail, similar to the silhouettes shown on the D&G runway.

Jeannie selected a silk & wool blend suiting in a subtle brown/grey plaid for the dress and fully lined it with rayon Bemberg lining.

To really pay tribute to “Viva la Mamma!” Jeannie embroidered a rose motif on the front of her dress. After sketching out a rose design, she drew it directly on her fabric using a metallic pen. She then embroidered over the design, embellishing it with copper colored sequins and iridescent blue beads.

NSB - JNxDG dressNSB - JNxDG detail

The Dolce & Gabbana dress shown above retails for $6,995. Jeannie’s version cost just $75!


Chris loved this jacket by The Row, with its cropped sleeve, longer body length, narrow lapel in contrast tweed, and one red buttonhole.

Using Burda 6842, Chris was able to capture the essence of the original style. She worked with Jacque Goldsmith to alter the pattern, shortening the sleeve and updating the lapel, ultimately creating a garment that is flattering to her figure.

6842

 

The original jacket is made of double-faced wool and silk; to achieve a similar look, Chris paired dense felted wool with lighter-weight wool tweed. For the single red buttonhole, she used silk thread.

NSB - CWxTR jacketNSB - CWxTR front detailNSB - CWxTR collar detail

The Row jacket retails for $4,090. Chris made her version for $176!


Prompted by the prevalence of the ‘match set’, Ellen was inspired to make her own version of this Tibi ensemble.

For the top, Ellen used Butterick 6134, altering the pattern for a straighter fit. She selected Butterick 6178 for the pant.

Ellen chose lovely wool suiting in slate blue with a pale stone woven motif for her match set. While neither of her selected patterns includes linings, she opted to add them to each garment. She underlined her top and created a regular lining for the pant.

NSB - EMxTB match set

The original Tibi ensemble retails for $1,300. Ellen’s version was made for $150!


Two of the Nancy’s employees were inspired by the styles with black lace overlays shown at Bottega Veneta.

Izzie liked the idea of a dress with sleeves and was intrigued by the shaping created by the seams of this dress.

To create her version of the look, Izzie made two separate dresses, using two patterns. She used Vogue 8944 for her overdress, altering the shape of the waistline. For the underdress, she used McCalls 7014, adjusting the neckline to better work with the overdress.

She selected printed cotton broadcloth for her underdress and a sheer patterned fabric for the overdress.

NSB - ILxBV dress

Jessica loved the simplicity of this dress silhouette and the effect of layering a delicate fabric over sporty stripes.

To recreate this look, Jessica used Burda 6914, which features the same rounded silhouette as the runway look. She lengthened the pattern and adjusted for size.

 

6914

Jessica selected a rayon quality with a reflected digital print for the under layer and opted for a lace with metallic motif for the outer layer. For the trims, she found a piece of geometric black lace. She used the rayon as an underlining, sewing both layers as one. Because the pattern features a pleated detail at the neck, she opted not to add a lace collar per the inspiration.

NSB - JVxBV dress

These two dresses look pretty great together!

NSB - ILJVxBV dresses

The Bottega Veneta dress that inspired Izzie’s dress retails for $7,600. Her version cost less than $100 for both dresses!

The dress that inspired Jessica’s version retails for $11,000. Including pattern & thread, her dress cost just $112!


Kitrina’s ensemble was inspired by many elements from the Marc Jacobs collection, including mixes of fabrics, like the use of sheer fabrics combined with opaque, tailored silhouettes, luxurious textures, and beading & sequins. Ultimately, Kitrina chose to make a box-pleat skirt that explores the opaque/sheer concept, a tailored double-breasted jacket, and a blouse with a band of sequins.

For her jacket, Kitrina used McCalls 8346, lengthening the jacket body and letting out the waist slightly. The blouse was made using KwikSew 3601; Kitrina altered the neckline and shortened the tunic body. Kitrina based the skirt on Burda 8155 (this is the pattern used for our Pencil Skirt Secrets class), reworking the shape to allow for the box pleats.

Kitrina selected burnout velvet in a purple/grey wild cat motif for her blouse and black sequined mesh for the band at the hemline. For her skirt, Kitrina used an olive/brown/navy plaid wool suiting for the outer pleat and black mesh with metallic dot for the inner pleat. Her jacket was made from a wool suiting – navy  pinstriped in brown – using black mohair for the contrast collar and faux pocket flaps.

NSB - KCxMJ blouse+skirtNSB - KCxMJ full ensemble

A similar ensemble from Marc Jacobs retails at $7,500. Kitrina was able to make her version for about $493!


I hope you enjoyed this look at our runway-inspired garments! Have questions about any of the looks? Leave them in the comments below!

Interview with a store department: woolens

As August begins it’s descent into September, we are beginning to think about changing leaves and autumn wardrobes. While this summer in Seattle has been incredibly beautiful and sunny, we would be lying if we said we weren’t excited for a little fall drizzle.

In anticipation of the harvest season – and the Nancy’s Sewing Basket anniversary sale! – we decided it would be fun to have a chat with the woolens department 🙂

NSB - woolens header

Who are you?
Hi, I am the wool department.

Where do you reside at Nancy’s?
I live in the center of the store, toward the back. I used to reside in a long row of tables in the back right section of the store, but since we rearranged, I am now in a cluster by the main walkway. I’m enjoying the brightness of being under several skylights.

NSB - woolens new location

The new location is arranged in a way that is fabulous for browsing.

Do you have a special focus?
I house all of the woolen and woolen-blend fabrics, both woven and knit, which are perfect for suiting, coats, dresses, skirts, and more. I am also home to all of the specialty animal fibers, like cashmere and camel hair.

What is your most recently received product?
In preparation for the fall season and the Nancy’s anniversary sale (which begins on Labor Day…), we just received a large shipment of woolens. We got in a lot of beautiful basics and interesting novelties.

Among the latest shipment is a small grouping of 100% wool crepe, fiber-dyed in the prettiest colors. Each color way has an interesting depth of hue. I think they would make a lovely dress or match set, like a tailored woven tee and a pencil skirt.

NSB - woolens new crepes

New wool crepes in exquisite colors: grey, brown, olive, and blue-grey.

Another interesting piece that arrived in the latest shipment is a twill-weave coating with a brushed surface that is comprised of 65% rabbit hair 35% wool. I believe the fiber is Angora rabbit hair, because it has the softest hand. It is incredibly luxurious and would make a sumptuous winter coat.

NSB - woolens specialty fibers

Three bolts of brushed woolen fabrics made with specialty fibers. From left: black fluffy mohair/wool, black rabbit hair/wool twill, and brown heather wool/cashmere/mink.

Do you have a current favorite product?
I am a big fan of the Italian 100% cashmere coatings that we carry. We have solids and patterns, all of which are simply gorgeous.

NSB - woolens cashmere

Incredible Italian cashmere in beautiful solids and exquisite textures and patterns.

We also have a nice selection of real Harris tweeds. Harris tweeds used to be narrow and very stiff, but we are lucky enough to carry what I think of as the ‘new generation’ of Harris tweeds: beautifully finished with an incredibly soft hand and 60″ wide.

NSB - woolens Harris tweeds

Gorgeous Harris tweeds! These are just begging to be tailored into a hacking jacket or a lovely little skirt.

Any favorite projects you’ve seen made from your wares?
This could easily be a very long list. We have sold so much wool throughout the years!

Right now, I am excited to see what the staff at Nancy’s creates for display during the anniversary sale. They are recreating several runway looks and many of them are using wools. I know there will be a D&G-inspired dress and a Marc Jacobs-inspired jacket & skirt ensemble, among others.  It will definitely be worth a visit to the shop when the sale is on to check out the different looks!

Thanks, woolens! We are also excited to see how the runway looks turn out! If you have any questions about materials shown in this post, let us know in the comments below, or by calling us at 206-282-9112 or 800-443-2964.

All pictures in this post copyright of Nancy’s Sewing Basket, LLC. Special thanks to Kam Martin for taking the picture used in the header.

Dreaming of spring dresses!

NSB - spring dressesThe sun has been shining in Seattle and I am dreaming of making a new spring dress! We have so many wonderful new fabrics coming into the shop in sweet prints, cool near-solid textures, and fun colors that it is hard to resist buying them all.

Adding in all the lovely new dress patterns that have been released makes the temptation even greater. There are lots of fabulous styles to explore: vintage-inspired, easy shifts, fit-and-flare, shirt-waist, classic sheaths…and the list goes on!

To celebrate the new season (plus fabrics and patterns), we’ve made up a couple dresses to share.

The first dress is a new pattern from the Lisette capsule collection released by Butterick. It’s a great fit-and-flare style that feels both modern and retro at the same time.

NSB - Lisette dress front

The original dress pattern doesn’t have ties, but we elected to add the sash from the pattern’s tunic style.

We made it up in a sweet cotton lawn print and added a vintage glass buckle for the perfect finish.

NSB - Lisette dress front detailThe bodice has a beautiful cross-front detail and triangular cut-out at the neckline for a sweet hint of skin.

Our second dress is a new pattern from McCall’s. It has a great casual feel to it: an easy fit bodice with button details and dolman sleeves, plus a tiered skirt for a little fun.

NSB - Polka Dot dress front

We’ve added a sash at the waist for a bit of definition, but think this would be so sweet with a contrast belt!

We made this pattern up in a classic polka-dotted silk crepep-de-chine, for a touch of elegance.

Jeannie's Polka Dot dress - back

Pairing a simple print with these fun style lines just makes this dress sing.

Inspired by all the cool fabrics coming into our shop and all the beautiful options on the runway and in stores, I have put together several collections of spring dress style:

Black and White Spring Dresses
Neutral Spring Dresses

Neutral Spring Dresses by nancyssewingbasket featuring a fit & flare dress

Easy-going Floral Dresses

Easy-going Floral Dresses by nancyssewingbasket featuring a sequin dress

Not-Quite Solid Dresses

Not-Quite Solid Dresses by nancyssewingbasket featuring summer shift dresses

'Blue Period' Dresses

‘Blue Period’ Dresses by nancyssewingbasket featuring plus size floral dresses

'Rose Period' Dresses

‘Rose Period’ Dresses by nancyssewingbasket featuring evening dresses

Do you have a favorite style of dress to make? Tell us about it in the comments!