Monday, June 12, 2017

The Gertie Books

Years ago I started following the Blog of Gretchen Hirsch, which is aptly named the Blog for Better Sewing. She started it because she found a classic sewing book called Vogues New Book for Better Sewing, and she basically sewed her way through the book.

Well since that time she has written three books, and as part of my process of growing in my skill set for my own sewing I have decided to sew my way through her books. I actually have sewn quite a few garments from the Ultimate Dress Book, which is AMAZEBALLS, and have created a custom pattern from a couple of the patterns in the book that is now my go to. However I need to branch out in a long list of things. My wardrobe, my skills, and my comfort zone.

So the best way to do this is to start with of course...... The FIRST book! LOL I know hard to process that one.

I remember when it first came out and at that time I was in a sewing lull and wished from afar because sometimes life screws with you. I also loved that as an homage to her beginnings she named the book Gertie's New Book for Better Sewing.

Now let me begin by saying my sewing skills are all self taught and about a year ago I decided that I needed to refine and polish my skills in order to hopefully alleviate some of my frustration with pattern drafting and proper fit. The worst part of custom garments for me is the yelling and cursing at the need for it to be just so. There are times when I literally leave a dress on the mannequin for months while I mentally solve the problems I am having with the fit and design. 

So there are ten designs in the first book. 

Pencil Skirt
Portrait Blouse
Sultry Sheath
Scalloped-Waist Skirt
Bow-Tied Blouse
Sweetheart Sundress
Wiggle Dress
Shirtwaist Dress
Suit Jacket
Coat Dress

She provides various variations of  every design in the book except the suit coat and coat dress. To be honest the suit coat may or may not be sewn since it is NOT in my personal style. I really hate the way coats like that feel on my arms. I know that might make me weird, but it is what it is. 

I have made a variation of the pencil skirt in an outfit for my Kentucky Derby event dress. 

I used the pencil skirt design from this book for the bottom half of this dress with a variation for the flounce at the bottom. 

So next I will make just the standard pencil skirt.