Throwback Thursday: Katie’s Wedding Dress and Lyal’s Wedding Shirt

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This beautiful woman is Katie. She is my oldest friend and I consider her family my family. She married her long time love Lyal in a fantastic celebration at Huntington Lake in the Sierra Mountains in the summer of 2009.

Katie and Lyal both asked me to dress them for the big day and I was so excited. Lyal wanted something totally crazy and also to wear a Daniel Boon hat which Katie and I quickly vetoed. Given the setting, we decided to go with something simple and romantic. 

I made Lyal an Indian inspired cotton shirt with abalone buttons, and I made Katie a beautiful romantic empire waist wedding dress with fluttery sleeves with antique lace details. The sash of the dress is made from the same material as Lyal’s shirt. I ended up with a lot of extra weight fabric from Katie’s dress and turned it in to a party dress which you can see here

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Wedding Day 104

  
Miss you two!

Happy NYE!

Wishing you all peace, love and joy in 2016. 

Nothing new for me this week, but check out some tiny heads and tiny hats! Previous posts about other tiny hats and heads here and here.

Each hat I make is created custom for the head it will cover. All I need are some general guidelines like fabric color and patch preference (though no guarantees, I am at the mercy of the fabric stores stock) and the circumference of the head.

 

Ring Bear-er hats from my friend Caroline’s wedding!

 
 

Fire truck!


  

Butterfly

butterfly and fire truck

 
  

A purple owl for my adorable niece


  

yeah, she’s pretty cute!

Custom-made for a different head, but didnt fit. Fits this adorable head though!

Have a head you’d like me to cover? Find the listing on Etsy here

Merry Xmas Eve!

Merry Xmas/Happy Holidays!

This week I decided to finally make something out of one of the half finished dresses I have had in my closet for ages. This dress was supposed to be a wrap dress just like this one here and this top here.

half finished before

half finished before

My body has changed enough since I sewed this that the top of the dress was no longer an option. Time to become a skirt! I had originally planned on having the darker green as the main color, but looking at them now, I chose to go with the lighter green on top and the darker green peeking out the bottom. Turns out that that was a good plan as I found a really big faded spot in the dark green fabric!

oops

 

The dress was designed with an empire waist (i.e. it hit right under the bust) so I knew I would be able to make a mid-calf length skirt like I wanted.  I have two petticoats and I wanted the option of wearing this skirt with my longer black one.

The first step was to remove the top from the skirt. Then I figured out what length I wanted the skirt and then cut it into three even panels. Skirt are cut into three pieces, but the front panel is twice as big as the back pieces. Since I always put pockets in my designs, I have found that having the side seam a little closer to center front made using the pockets much easier. No more endless searches for my pockets with my hands! Then all I did was add a thin black waist band, hemmed both layers of skirts and put in a zipper.

I ended up finishing the skirt early and wore it (minus the petticoat) to a holiday party this past weekend. I really love the weight of the two layers of fabric and I can’t wait to wear it (with petticoat this time) tonight!

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with petticoat

twirl

twirl

I dare you to wear a petticoat and not twirl at least once!

 

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without the petticoat, showing off the pockets

 

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…and the back

 

 

The black top is from Target, and it’s hard to see them in the photos, but theses are the earrings I’m wearing. They are Katy Turner originals, and you can buy them from my Etsy shop here.

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I got these fantastic new shoes from Modcloth.com and you can find them for sale here.
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An Apron For The Holidays 

For years I sewed personalized gifts for friends and family members for Christmas, but I ran out of ideas a few years ago and have since moved on to giving food gifts. This means that I’ll be spending a great deal of time in the kitchen over the next week. I have a few aprons at home that I use if I need one, but they are all store bought and just not my style. This apron has been laying half finished in my sewing room for three years and this week was the time to change that!

The fabric actually comes from the duvet cover and curtains I made when I first moved in to my cottage! I’m not sure where the color scheme came from (maybe I just really liked the leaf fabric?) but it became clear pretty quickly that it just wasn’t going to work with the space. I swapped it all out for blues and greens, but was left with lots of this fabric. I made a little apron for one of my neighbor on her 7th birthday (sadly never got a pic and she has since moved away) and quickly decided that I would like one for myself. Procrastination (or something) took hold though and I only now just finished it!

I may add pockets at a later date, but for now I’m thrilled with just a simple covering to keep me clean while baking and cooking!

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I personally hate halters, so I go out of my way to avoid things around my neck when designing for myself

I love the detail!

I have enough fabric for two more of these, if anyone is interested!

Throwback Thursday: A Dress for Sara & Jonah’s Wedding 

During the summer of 2014 my friends Sarah and Jonah married each other in a beautiful ceremony overlooking Lake Merritt in Oakland. I never ended up posting about the dress I made for myself on here, and only have a few low quality pictures from the event so I had the amazing Drew Beck take some new photos to show you. 

If the look seems familiar, that’s because it kind of is. I made a very similar dress a year before for my friend Martha’s wedding, just in a bright yellow color (which you can see here). The neckline of the dress is different, but the shoes, the petticoat and the necklace are all the same. 

I intentionally left the skirt of the dress a bit on the short side so that the petticoat would show.

photo by Drew Beck


Pockets of course. A girl needs somewhere to put her hands!

photo by Drew Beck

 
The back. I actually have a bra I didn’t wear very much that’s just about this color purple, so I ended up adjusting the straps to fit just this dress. 

photo by Drew Beck


…and a silly one of course!

photo by Drew Beck

This may not be the least time you see this look as its pretty much the most fun thing I have ever worn! Maybe I’ll go green next time…

A Dress For Caroline & Jeme’s Wedding

Three weeks ago I posted about a flower girl dress I made for my friend Caroline’s wedding. This week you get to see what I made for myself!

I live in a one-bedroom cottage, where the bedroom has been transformed into my sewing studio. The room is packed with fabric, so as a general rule I try to not buy anything new until I’ve used up some of what I already have. This makes going to fabric stores very difficult for me, and this time I failed. I don’t even remember what I was there to buy anymore, but I walked past a bolt of this fabric and knew I was in trouble! It is a beautiful lilac colored linen with an amazing scalloped eyelet hem.

When designing for myself, I tend to gravitate towards full skirts as they are fun, flattering and easy to put pockets in (not to mention make wearing my petticoats possible). The fabric wasn’t cheap though, and only had the eyelet on one edge so, this dress was going to be a little different. I chose to go with a simple high slightly scooped neck in the front and a deep U in the back to let my tattoo peek out. I cut some of the fullness out of the top of the skirt and that allowed for seams to put the pockets in.

photo by Drew Beck

photo by Drew Beck

photo by Drew Beck

photo by Drew Beck

I love the dress and look forward to wearing it again. The one thing I leaned however is that dancing in heels and an eyelet hemmed dress is a bad combination! I ended up on the floor twice with my heel caught in my skirt! Oops!
   
  

Happy Thanksgiving!

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Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I hope you are all able to be with people you love and who love you today.

I spent my Saturday this past weekend doing something I haven’t done in quite a while….I made myself a new dress! My intention was to make a new dress for Thanksgiving, and actually I managed to finish it in time to wear it to a friends show on Saturday. So, some of you have actually already seen it in person!

The majority of the dress is made from fabric I don’t even remember buying. I was doing a bit of inventory recently and came across this batik. I LOVE it! I wish I could remember buying it. From far away it looks a bit like a camo print, but up close….its like a celestial explosion.

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The weather has finally decided its winter, so I opted to go for something a little longer than I normally do. The problem with this, was that I knew I didn’t have a lot of this fabric. Thankfully, this print is so multicolored, I knew I would be able to find a solid cotton to go well with it. I had thought it would be a chocolate brown, but it ended up being more of a dark brownish purple.

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The design for this dress was very much dictated by the amount of fabric I had to work with. I wanted as full skirt as I could get, but knew it would not be very full, given my small amount of fabric I had. The one small happy accident was the neck line. I used an old pattern to start and it ended up making the neckline WAY too wide. I had already sewn most of the bodice together, so instead of starting over, I managed to create the pleat at the neck and am thrilled with the results!

With my amazing photographer Drew Beck now living in NYC it falls to me to try to capture my new pieces in photo form. I appologize for the photo quality, I have no idea what I’m doing, but I’m trying!

Also, pardon the cardigan….its COLD!

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And an absolutely terrible indoor shot from my attempt at photos on Saturday, but I realized I didn’t get a shot of the front without the cardigan. Sorry!

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I Look a Little Different: Alterations Needed

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For those of you who don’t know me, you may have noticed that I look a bit different in my photos these days. A few years ago I decided it was time to take back control of my body and joined Weight Watchers. It took me 13 months, but I lost 65 pounds and have now kept it off for almost 2 years.

The one downside is that not a single thing I’ve made myself in the last 8 years or so fits any more! That means I have a lot of alteration projects to work on.

The following are two looks I have previously posted that I altered to fit my new body. I have a ton more looks to do this with and will document the process for those pieces so you can see how I do it. (I just ran out of time with these two!)

Look #1 Original post here

photo by Drew Beck

photo by Drew Beck

photo by Drew Beck

 

Look #2 Original post here

photo by Drew Beck

photo by Drew Beck

 

photo by Drew Beck

Flower Girl Dress

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I have a friend named Caroline whom I have known since I was 7. She is one of the kindest most effervescent people I know, and though she has not lived close for quite a while, and I don’t get to see her very often, she is one of those friends I would do anything for her.
The physical distance between us made me making her wedding dress impossible, but when she asked if I would make a flower girl dress, I jumped at the chance. This was my first time making a dress for a little girl, and also making and sending a dress to a client I’d never met! Happy to say it all worked out.

Caroline knew she wanted to go with bright warm colors for her wedding, and I found a truly beautiful cross dyed cotton and a coordinated pink for the sash.


I had measurements for the flower girl, and also asked for a size reference then actually bought a pattern, and altered to fit my design.

Here are the results!

 

photo by Elizabeth Minor

 

photo by Elizabeth Minor

 

And the back

Matching bow tie for baby brother

 

photo by Elizabeth Minor

 

KTs Caps – FOR SALE!

Looking for a cap to keep the sun out of your little ones eyes? Look no further! These caps are custom made to fit each individual head. They can be made out of just about any kind of fabric, in any color you want with whatever patch you may want (that I can find!) or not.

I make them with a bit of elastic in the back to secure the cap to the head and reinforce the brim to make sure it stays sturdy. They are machine washable and return customers get a nice discount (as I know how fast those little heads grow!).

All I need is the circumference of the head needing protection. $30

If interested, please e-mail me at katyturner@gmail.com

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Blue corduroy with owl patch

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Blue corduroy with owl patch

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Blue corduroy with owl patch

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Blue corduroy with owl patch

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Red denim with dump truck patch

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Red denim with dump truck patch

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Burgundy denim with floral patch

I’m working on getting my Etsy shop up an running so for now just e-mail me at katyturner@gmail.com!

-Katy