With the impending date of an 1830’s Romantics Era picnic at Ardenwood Farm put on by the Greater Bay Area Costumer’s Guild, I commenced work on my gown. Pinterest was the first place I headed for inspiration. There are so many examples of dresses from the era, it was easy to find several that I could draw from for designs. Finding fabric was next and then building all the undergarments. I never did finish ALL of the undergarments, but I did make a set of stays, a shift, drawers (aka bloomers) and a corded petticoat. And I was also gifted a second petticoat that helped fill out the dress as well. Hard to believe there should be MORE underneath the gown, but there is - Sleeve puffers, some additional petticoats and a bum ruffle. I’ll save that for next time or for the Dicken’s Faire.Read More
Last month I had the pleasure and luxury of taking a day off from my regular duties as store owner and teacher, to drive up north, near Sacramento, for a visit to Huston Textiles Fabric Mill. A fabric mill in California? Yes, indeed! That was the thing that really surprised me when I heard about this small company.Read More
No trip to Portland is complete, to me, without a trip to Xtabay Vintage. This place is the Bomb! it’s so lovely and special inside and one can’t help but absorb that glamor that oozes from every corner. I was lucky to run into the owner Liz Gross, who was kind enough to grant me an interview. She’s owned & operated Xtabay for quite some time now and the shop (both in person and online) have become a fixture in the vintage clothing community. Read on to meet Liz and find out about this extraordinary business and woman behind it:Read More
Every year my daughter & I go to Portland, Oregon, to visit my best friend, Angie and her family. It’s always one of the highlights of my year. Do you have a friend who just “gets” you? Well, Angie is that friend to me and she & her family always welcome us with open arms.
We both LOVE shopping and so does Emma, so it was fun day to be had by all, when Angie mentioned she needed to go buy some mirrors for the winery & tasting room, she and her husband, Matt are building. Their wine is really lovely by the way. Love & Squalor does a fabulous Riesling and they also make very special Pinot Noir for which they are gaining some critical acclaim. Go Love & Squalor!!!
Our first stop was Monticello Antique Marketplace. The building is very large and houses many little booths operated by an eclectic array of vendors with lovely pieces in every one.Read More
Welcome to the Final part of my interview with Designer, Illustrator, Artist and Instructor - Julie Ann Silverman. This multi-faceted creative woman, has shared so much with our community with all her insights and lifetime experience. I hope she inspires you as much as she’s inspired me. Read on for more nuggets!Read More
After being invited to the Sacramento Tweed Ride, by friends Lisa and Robb, I had only two weeks to get something together. I took my inspiration from vintage hunting/riding/sporting attire and my imaginings of vintage country living. I hope to one day, own a country home. Until that happens, I can just dress as if I do, right?Read More
Welcome to Part 2 of our Interview with Designer and Fashion Illustration Instructor, Julie Ann Silverman. In this part of the interview, we talked a bit about the creative process and how she stays motivated. I think it makes for some inspirational reading and I hope you do too!Read More
Tweed Rides have become popular around California and other parts of the US. What is a Tweed Ride you ask? That’s what a lot of people asked me when I told them my plans for that Sunday afternoon. Well, Tweed Rides seem to have a few things in common - Bicycles (mostly vintage), Downtown Streets and a bunch of people wearing Tweed. I’m not sure why all these people do this, but, as you may have realized, I really love an excuse to get dressed up and/or make an outfit for occasions like these.Read More
I recently had the opportunity to interview our new Fashion Illustration and Design Instructor, for the Fashion Studies Course, Julie Ann Silverman. She comes to us from Southern California where she has been a swimwear designer for the last 20 years. She is amazingly talented, and a wonderful Instructor. I’ll be breaking her interview into several parts as she has revealed so many little diamonds in this one interview, that it is too hard to absorb all at once. I love her take on developing your own style so read on below to find out more.Read More
I can’t tell you how happy it makes me to write this post! This project has been lingering for a while now. It wasn’t a particularly difficult project, but for some reason (probably all the little balls of yarn getting twisted up) I haven’t been as committed to getting it finished.
I was recently asked to be a judge for the vintage fashion contest, at the Alameda Vintage Fashion Faire this last weekend and I needed something to wear. Nothing like an event to get one motivated. With a week and a half to finish, I made it happen.Read More
I've had a bee in my bonnet for dressing up "old-fashioned" style for about as long as I can remember. Now as a grown woman, when my friend says that the Greater Bay Area Costumer's Guild is hosting an 1830's picnic at Ardenwood Farm in June, I can't help but jump at the opportunity. At this point, I've finished some of the undergarments (Shift and Drawers) and started on my Regency Long Stays. In doing some research, I found that during the 1830's, ladies were still wearing their long "stays" or transitioned to slightly curvier long stays and haven't quite evolved into the corsetry of the later 1800's. The pattern for these "stays" came from Redthreaded and the fit is spot on, with very little alteration.Read More
Last year I came across the photo above while looking for inspiration on Pinterest. I was immediately struck by the novelty of the graduated dots and sharpness in the way the subject has put her outfit together. The whole ensemble - Jumper, paired with the hat, necklace, belt, skirt and shoes, is iconically 1920’s in a sporting kind of way. Everything about the photo delighted me and I KNEW that it must be brought to life in the 21st century.Read More
Today’s post is about a 1920’s Short Car Coat I finished just last week. The fabric for the jacket/coat has been in my stash for the last several years. I was planning on making it to go with the blouse and skirt I’m wearing in the photos, for Miss Fisher Con, which was almost 1 year ago (already?). It didn’t quite happen in the time I originally planned to make it, but an occasion came up and It seemed like a faster make than finishing a sweater, so off I went.Read More
It’s been busy over here at The Sewing Room and finishing this ensemble took some time. I think the blouse was one of my longest running projects in quite sometime. Partially, because of other projects that got in the way and also because I did a LOT of hand finishing.Read More
I recently finished these 3 pieces for our Holiday Window and thought it might be interesting to show how I put them together. These were 3 very fast and furious projects that you could easily accomplish in a weekend.Read More
Guest Post from Jo Anne Yada (AKA Ms. Y)
I recently had the pleasure of collaborating with the fabulous Jennifer Serr, owner of The Sewing Room, to design a holiday window display. I wanted to highlight her business in a fun, festive, and vintage way to showcase the amazing creativity that represents her and her business. I wanted to do more than hang some lights and set up a tree; I wanted to give the message to all those walking by that this is indeed a creative space where you can make adorable sewing projects. And so I decided to make some vintage-inspired dolls out of sewing materials to add to the display.Read More
Some of my favorite places to shop are on ETSY, the global online marketplace for everything Vintage, Craft or Craft Supply. And lately, I’ve been coming across some really wonderful vendors as well as my trusted favorites. Below is my GIFT GUIDE for Vintage Makers and the enthusiasts in their life.Read More
So excited to share what’s been happening in the Store Front! While it’s not my normal Vintage sewing, we did add a vintage twist to the Window Display at the Sewing Room. There is a contest, which started last year, in our Downtown Alameda Business District. Sponsored and run by the folks over at Digifli, the Downtown Alameda Window Contest has really encouraged downtown merchants (such as myself) to participate in making our town more Festive during the Holiday Season.Read More
I can’t say enough good things about our recent Bra Making class at The Sewing Room. Linda Sepeda was a fantastic instructor and she really helped us to get the best fit possible.Read More
It’s Fall here (finally) in Northern California and the trees are starting to turn. And by Fall I mean it’s gotten hot in the days (upper 70’s F) and cools off at night. Not quite jacket weather, in the daylight, but it feels good to dip into the fall colors.Read More