Friday, April 20, 2012

puff puff green, y'all

Sleeves, puff sleeves.  And green dye, geez.

I know what day it is, ahem, but all I'm offering here is my gussied up, green, puff-sleeve Violet


A couple things:  dye, sleeves and making it fitted

First, let me ask you something...Have you ever tried to find this color green at stores or online, in a natural fiber?  Cause it's nearly impossible.  I consider this (and slightly deeper emerald) the perfect shades of green, my absolute favorite color.  But it alludes me.  Why oh why are you so hard to find in a nice, natural fiber with good drape?

So, a dye it is.  First I tried iDye in Emerald, curious about this brand, having never used it before.

Now, I've had bad luck at stove top dyeing in the past, so I tried the machine and followed the packets advice.  Unfortunately, I had two yards of fabric and realized after the dyeing/washing that I should've used more than one packet.  It just wasn't enough to dye that amount of fabric.  It turned out lime green.

Soldiering on, I bought Tulip Brand in Green

I tackled the stove top method again, brought the water to almost boiling (hotter the water, darker the shade), used 3 packages of this stuff and followed the directions religiously. I really like the color, but wish it was just a smidge darker.  I've heard if you let the fabric dry overnight before rinsing clear, that it will set better.  I'll let you know when I do it again :-)

Onto the sleeves, I've decided I want a closet full of puff sleeves, so after my muslin, I chopped up the pattern, again using this tutorial

From the looks of it, seems like my fabric is a little too thin to really puff up.  The potential is there, they are just lazy little gathers aren't they?  Isn't there a trick to make fabric stand up in the shoulders, using twill tape, or something like that?  Must research. 

Finally, when I wore this on our holiday, I of course had my husband take photos.  In every.single.picture I looked pregnant.  And I'm not pregnant.  I think this fabric is just more flowly than the muslin one, not sure why this one made me look preggers and the other one not. 

So, had to take it in.  I probably did not do it correctly, but just a little pinch and pin, then turned those into darts, in the front and the back. 

 you can see where i started pinning, but moved it closer to the seams

looks a little better, but methinks I've got a sway back going on

What I've learned/will do next time:

1.  Practice gathering-I don't think the sleeve gathers are very even
2.  Remove the gathers from the back yoke and do the sway back adjustment
3.  Try my hand at moving the front darts and turning them into princess seams (maybe will help make more fitted?)
4.  Figure out sleeve head, standing up thingy

Also, if you have any advice on where to buy natural fiber green fabric, I'm all ears!

And, I just couldn't resist this...


  1. Try some iron-on interfacing for the sleeves in the seams????

  2. Here you go, sweets:

    I was looking at some dotted swiss on Fabric Mart, too. They had some great colors, although I'm not sure if they had green. But, they have a lovely purple dotted swiss!

  3. @Leah, if I can get my lazy butt up to look in one of my tailoring books, I know there is a specific material used, like a thick interfacing.

    @Colleen-YES! That shade is perfect. Too bad I already dyed mine, haha, couldn't saved the trouble.

  4. look stunning and the green is so springy.. love it

    1. It is springy, huh? Thank you for the kind words!!

  5. This is so cute! What a fun spring top - and a very pretty green! I envy your mad fabric dyeing skills... I tried to dye some of our curtains a nice light-but-bright shade of yellow a few weeks ago (seemed like a really good idea at the time... lol) and apparently a "nice" shade of yellow is hard to get. Ugh. What a disaster!

    Anyway, oddly enough, I happened to see this green eyelet fabric this morning as I was cruising FabricMart's website:

    I think maybe it's a similar shade? I do rarely see pretty kelly green colors in the stores!

    1. Juli, that fabric is SO pretty! Embroidered and eyelet, oh what a pretty dress it would make!! Not only is it 55" wide, but it's on sale, too. Thank you so much for the link :-D

      As for the dyeing, what happened? Was it splotchy or too bright? Believe me, this is the FIRST dye project that turned out ok!

    2. WAY too bright! Lol. And the smell of the dye was awful! The curtains were a mix of cotton/poly so I used one packet of natural idye and one of polyester idye). As soon as i opened up the polyester dye packet... ooof! I had to open all of the windows in the house to try and air it out. That stuff is strong!

      I'm so glad that you liked the fabric! It's funny, I literally just saw it over there before I hopped on over to read your blog post! :-)

  6. I've been desperately looking for fabric in that same colour for ages but have also had no luck. I never thought to dye my own... maybe I'll have give it a go!

    1. Oh Renae, I'm glad I'm not the only one! It's such a fabulous color, I can't understand why it's not more readily available. Do give it a go, and let us all know how it turns out!

  7. Nice. Found you via the MMM Flickr group, and I'm loving your makes.

  8. @theperfectnose-hi and welcome, and thank you! Funny you found me that way, cause I never ended up posting anything there :)