Tuesday, June 24, 2008

ModernGear Women: Haute and Handmade

I was just admiring the handstitched wallet that Dooce chose for her Daily Style feature, and I hope she doesn't mind but I am going to borrow the image to show you:
Isn't that just adorable?

Though Dooce found it at her local Farmer's Market, you can also see other goodies from the Freshly Picked line on Etsy.

I love her fun, colourful wallets, and they're $5, people!!

I also love her pillowcase dress for a wee little girl, at $15.

It also got me to thinking - I grew up in a household where my parents made things with their own two hands. Why buy when you can make, was a theme - whether it was a leather jacket or a steel farm implement, my parents were never afraid to tackle a project or engineer a better solution than one you could buy. Today, my father turns amazing wood bowls that he'll sell online - and as soon as he does, I'll write about them here, and my mother can look at a sweater in a picture or on a web site, and make me a reproduction. Which she has done, and again, I'll write about that too.

But for some reason, that do-it-yourself gene never seemed to get passed down to me. Or maybe it did, but I've just been repressing it, as a style writer always finding what's new and hot on the market.

I've always wanted to tackle a sewing project, like a lovely coverlet or quilt for our bed, but haven't ever tried. Well, my sister recently inspired me to start letting my inner sewing bug out and I am currently researching sewing machines, patterns and quilting classes.

My sister came across Amy Butler's fabrics, and found them to be all the inspiration she needed to sit down at the sewing machine after years away, and they've done the same for me. See if they don't have the same effect on you!

Now first of all, if there is absolutely no way on earth you'll ever sew in your life, you can get some of Amy Butler's lovely things already made for you, like:

Nolita Celery handbag


Ashbury Aqua handbag


Reversible Big Boxy 2 Pillow


But you can make these wonderful things, and more, yourself too!

There are 25 projects like floor cushions, aprons, and handbags in the In Stitches book for
$24.95, as well as fantastic individual sewing patterns, and Amy's fabric.

Sewing patterns and fabric not available on her web site but on other online shops and bricks-and-mortar retailers, listed here. Just think, you could actually make your own clothing, handbag, bed cover and pillows from the below - just a smattering of the beautiful patterns available.

Anna Tunic

Lotus Tunic and Cami

Barcelona Skirts

Weekender Travel Bag

Feather Your Nest patterns - pillow shams and coverlet
Gum Drop Pillows

My sister tackled a handbag from the patterns, with Amy Butler fabric as well, and it turned out really nicely! (Shown here with her own 'purse charm' that she makes and sells at Sontza.com!)Now, my sis has a bit more sewing experience than I do (she even sewed right through her finger making me a shirt once), but I'm still so motivated that I am going to start my project as soon as I can.


Anonymous said...

So don't keep people in suspense - what is your project going to be?!

ModernGear TV said...

A quilt!! Ask me about its progress...in about a year!!!