Lace work to date

The past week has been all about guipure lace – buying it, planning a skirt/dress with it, manipulating it for shape, placing it on a garment for the ‘wow’ you want. 

In the past I’ve used various laces and fine fabrics.

This peplum top made in 2015 uses a sequinned lace provided my Minerva Crafts UK.

The original version of this fabric was used for a gold dress I wore to the Minerva meetup a few years ago.
The key to making this fabric more wearable was to interline the fabric and then line it.

This top also uses a knit mesh with lace detailing made last year. For this top I only underlined the front and back bodices.

This dress made in 2014 was a remnant lace that was lined and not interlined. Quick and easy especially as I used my block pattern.

Lace comes into it’s own when you use such small pieces for bras.

 This off-white bra using pin up girls pattern wasn’t underlined

This gold bra has a light underlining.

While this dress using fabric from Selective Fine Fabrics uses a printed cutout fabric, I still had to interline it. When I bought it last year, Louisa spent time with me testing the fabric with a number of coloured poplins to find the best underlining that would still let the colours in this print pop. White underlining was the best version.

This crazy print used a bone coloured lace along the shoulders. The fit was good but I’ve since passed this dress onto someone else.

I really enjoyed blending this green Chantilly lace over blue fabric that I bought from Pitt Trading.

There’s a lot less flower placement to worry about with such a delicate lace.

Oh my goodness. in 2013 I used a corded lace on this Beatrice dress by Sew Chic patterns and tried to keep the shaped hem on the skirt and sleeves. The fit was this dress needed more work but it was worth making because it has an unusual neckline.

Navy lace pieced over satin from a design I saw on Pinterest was the inspiration for this navy lace dress using fabric from White Tree Fabrics two years ago.

 I still wear this skirt that has a few layers of fabric to make it the colour I wanted.

Both the lace and underlining fabrics had colours that I would look great in. Pairing them together resulted in a more wearable skirt.

Seriously even the lining is a bit loud, but really suited this skirt.

Lastly I’ll show you this skull lace from Minerva Crafts from a year ago.

It’s a mesh knit and I really loved the fact it has a skull pattern and not florals.

That’s my working with lace history and now I’ve cracked working with guipure lace through Susan Khalje’s workshop so you’ll see more about this in the coming weeks.


The ‘thing’ with fantasy shows is the costume department use loads of texture techniques to create a mood for each character. 

Dragonscale embellishments are used in Game of Thrones to create Daenerys Targerean or Khaleesi’s regalness as she becomes a queen while being the mother of dragons. So that’s where I headed for my round 2 ‘make your own fabric’ challenge in PR sewing bee.

I was fearful of making something that would look ‘undercooked’, however online costumers are generous in sharing their costume techniques. 

This is the real deal from Michele Carragher’s website.

Smocking is something I’ve enjoyed dabbling in. North American smocking is used to create some of the embellishments for Khaleesi’s costumes and I saw one of her costumes up close at the Game of Thrones exhibit in Belfast last year. The same technique is used on her later costumes too.

The smocking template is fairly simple to mark up on fabric and there are lots of YouTube demos to learn from.

Setting up the stitching lines on the fashion fabric.

After creating a small sample in front of the telly, I realised this smocking gig is worthwhile doing.

Test smocking piece

The effect of the triangle stitches

The cotton under layer fabric was sewn as per the pattern with the darts sewn. Then the smocked piece was over laid on it. 

The bodice then was sewing with rows of machine honey comb stitching using three different colour threads.
Here’s how the bodice came out with additional fabric sewn onto the shoulder pieces. The bronze sequins are also provide more ‘scale’.
The final bodice with sequin scales and pieces of the bronze trouser fabric for effect.

The local fabric store had this royal blue fabric I needed for this piece and I had plenty of stray threads in my stash to machine sew lots of scales and quilting lines on each panel piece.

Skirt scale layering

This is where I was checking how the front skirt would work with embellishment.

The costume has quilt lines that look very military. But then another version has a honeycomb mesh fabric on it so I had to decide if it was work adding dragon scale mesh to the skirt.

The left is a lighter weight blue mesh. The right is a larger purple mesh fabric.

I ended up using the blue mesh fabric on the skirt over the quilting lines and fabric piecing.

The full outfit.
On the actual outfit, there’s a gorgeous open back to it. 
I went for the bra friendly version – small.

Vogue 8280
Vogue 8280 was my Khaleesi costume basis and initially cut the lining using a scale like Ikea fabric. 

I cut out the pieces from this fabric first.

This fashion fabric became the outside and lining for the costume.

This costume is quite heavy and fits firmly.

By texturing each piece of fabric, one at a time and checking the photos of the original work online, I felt a whole lot more confidence in creating the textures without feeling all this work would be wasted. I think I spent 12 hours on this project. 

The mother of dragons has done well to survive through to series 5, so why not make one simple Khaleesi outfit for myself. 

With trousers.
Just the dress.

The whole box and dice.
And that’s my fantasy piece for now…