Colette Myrtle in drapey black & white

Colette Myrtle

Today I sewed up a quick knit dress…. The Myrtle by Colette Patterns. It was very quick to sew on my normal machine and my coverstitcher, a Janome CPX 1000. I didn’t make a muslin but did try it on my dress form before I stitched anything together. I cut a size small, but realized […]

Basic Black: Japanese Pattern Book Giveaway

Basic Black Giveaway

  Hellooooo readers!!!! I’m back from my week at the Couture Sewing Sweatshop Class. Let’s just say I got my sewing on there. Seriously. Sewing, draping and fitting from 9 AM until 1 AM some nights. More on that later this week. When I get my photos organized. But first, a giveaway! BASIC BLACK : […]

Draping a pleated gown bodice


So… I’m off to Susan Khalje’s Couture sewing class for a week to learn all about constructing formal wear! I’m pretty excited to be able to sew for a week with other  clothing makers interested in hand sewing techniques. It’s a rare person in real life who makes clothes and I look forward to blabbing […]

Stabilize A V Neckline With Selvage Strips

Stabilize a V Neckline

I’ve been working on Jessica from The Sewing Rabbitt’s new pattern, The Stepford Dress. It has a deep v neckline and I wanted to keep it from gaping, so I’m stabilizing the neckline with selvage strips to keep that from happening. It’s a really cute pattern,…. I’m making mine from a peacock print Liberty fabric. […]

My Padded Dress Form

Padded Dress Form

That’s my padded dress form. I sew and design in my dining room so she has to be presentable. Her measurements are pretty close to mine but I had to do a little padding. I made some pads by creating pads from batting . Then I tucked them under this lace shapewear camisole. I think […]

Girls Ruffled Apron Tutorial


I’m a procrastinator when it comes to sewing practical things like lunch sacks, aprons, slipcovers, and pillowcases. My house could use some spiffing up and last week I bought some really great natural linen to make new slipcovers with. We’ll see how long it takes for me to get to it! Gigi really wanted a […]

Justine’s Sewing Bookshelf: Dressmaking For Real Women

Dressmaking For Real Women

I have an EXTENSIVE collection of sewing books. Most I have bought for my own sewing needs, some have been sent to me from publishers, and some I’ve had since design school back in the 90′s, and then there are the  vintage sewing books going back to the twenties, and pattern catalogs I’ve found at […]

Back Porch Dress: Kids Clothes Week


  I haven’t been sewing for my girls lately and this week is Kids Clothes Week around blogland so I decided to finish a project that had been sitting in my unfinished pile before my little one grows out of it. It’s a dress I designed inspired by the dresses I love worn by little […]