Archive for the ‘RetroTropic Forum’ Category


May 21, 2011

Despite my lofty goals at the beginning of the year, I have made only two dresses so far. If I plan to fulfill my sewing goal, then I really need to step up my game.  Below are the two dresses I made, perfect for my as of yet non-existent summerline, combining vintage fabric and tweed.  The first dress I just completed today.  It took me about 3 hours, and for once, everything went right when I constructed it (i.e., no running out of bobbin, no need for the seam ripper, no thread changes, etc.).  The second dress I made on March 11, the day of the devastating Japanese earthquake/tsunami, which resulted in a day-off for most workers here in Hawai’i as we were under a tsunami warning.  This dress took me 6 hours because everything went wrong.  If only I could hire someone for dirt cheap to sew my clothesline for me I’d be stoked.  I absolutely love buying fabric and putting different fabric prints together.  I just hate the actual construction of it.  Nevertheless, since I finally have more time to be productive as summer has started, I plan on recreating the below two dresses as part of my summerline that I hope to start selling in August.

Vintage cotton fabric + tweed

Vintage polyester fabric + tweed


Newest Vintage Creation

August 30, 2010

Dress made from vintage blue material found at a White Elephant sale.

Vintage Reincarnation: Bold Green Dress

July 28, 2010

I found the vintage green fabric at a white elephant sale last year and paired it with a fuschia lycra from Fabric Mart. I haven't yet decided whether to keep this dress long, or chop it short, right below the print.

Vintage Reincarnated: Pink + Green Tropical Floral Belt

May 27, 2010

Here is the green version of the black dress I featured the last time from Target.  In order to break up the monotony of the green, I paired the dress with a belt I made from a vintage pink & green tropical floral print.

Green Dress from Target + Vintage Pink & Green Tropical Floral Belt

Pink + Green: A cool, soothing color combo.

Vintage Reincarnated: Reversible Wave Belt

May 25, 2010

Although I hardly ever wear black, I absolutely could not resist this black dress at Target because it had such a retro, 60s vibe. However, to give it a burst of color, I paired it with a belt I made a while back from two different vintage 60s/70s garments–the first, a white & red polyester wave print dress that I assume was inspired by Hokusai’s most famous print The Great Wave off Kanagawa; and the second, an orange polyester flower & fan print dress.

Black Dress from Target + Vintage Reversible Wave Belt

Out of all the vintage fabrics I have found over the years, this white & red wave print is my absolute favorite. The first time I found a garment with this fabric was at a white elephant sale. The second time I found a garment with this fabric (talk about being lucky!) was at a Goodwill store.

The reverse side of the vintage belt.

Fabric belts are extremely easy to make.  First, cut 2x enough length and any width of fabric.  Then, sew the 2 pieces together with the right sides facing each other, leaving a small opening in which you can then turn the fabric right side out.  Lastly, stitch the opening closed.  If you want to use vintage 60s/70s fabrics, probably the best place to look is at white elephant sales (but get there early!). Ten years ago, I used to find my vintage fabric at Savers, but ever since more and more designers started to use vintage prints in their collections, it became harder to find vintage garments at Savers.  Or, perhaps I’m just too picky when choosing what vintage prints I want to work with.  After all, I do not buy anything that I would not wear also.