Monday, 2 May 2011

Inspiration week 3: Granny

It's time for my most favorite inspiration, my own grandmother! My granny is someone I will always look up to, and whose values I will always try to uphold. She grew up in a humble working class home and spent her early twenties during the WW2. She met her true love during those years and ended up spending 55 happy years with my beloved grandfather. They had five children together and before her passing she became a great-great-grandmother. My granny and grandad were the embodiment of love and I can only hope to maybe one day have a glimpse of that myself.

I wanted to share this with you because it was my gran who inspired me to really start blogging. The name of my blog Malmikon palmikot  is a tribute to her. Malmikko was her maiden name and I wanted to honor her roots by using that name on my blog, and on my apparel too. Palmikko refers to braids or cable knitting, and it rhimes with Malmikko. The name of the blog can be translated into Malmikko's braids.

My granny and her friends in 1940. She's the second from the left with the lovely neckline embroidered dress.

A summer day with friends (and adorable button details!).

Looking classy on Tähtitorninmäki.

Gran and granddad around 1943 behind the Barker weaving-mill.

Who's your inspiration?


Tämän viikon inspiraationa on oma rakas mummini.

Sunday, 1 May 2011

The Back and Forth dress

 It feels like I started this dress ages ago! At first I had a clear vision of what I was making. I would make the Simplicity 4491 with the wider skirt and that would be it. And I did, until it was time to hem the dress. Then I started second guessing my choice and started thinking of tearing the skirt down and making the wiggle view instead. In the end I went back and forth with the decision for weeks (hence the name) and finally went with the original idea. Isn't that always the case by the way? lol! I did take some construction photos when I worked with the bodice part but forgot to take any with the skirt part. I underlined the bodice with white cotton and did the skirt lining with the same cotton. The flower fabric is a polyester cotton blend sheet I thrifted for 2 euros from the Salvation Army and the white cotton is and old sheet I got from my mother. The only new thing I had to buy was the zipper, so in the end the dress cost about 4 euros, not bad!

I did the underlining my own way; pinned the two layers togethet and staystiched the edges.

The sheet had a tag that said the fabric was ironing free. It wasn't but still it's pretty!
The darts were worryingly pointy at this point.

I trimmed the darts and finished them with hand overcast.

Sewing the neckline facings. I added interfacing to all the facing pieces to stabilize them properly.

I didn't make any alterations to the bodice piece since I had done it once already. With the skirt part I had to make do of what I had. There wasn't enough fabric to make the skirt as wide as the pattern required. I ended up not using the skirt pattern pieces at all. I just took as big a piece of the fabric as I could and made a one-piece dirndl skirt. I did to the pleats in the front according to the pattern, but that was easily done even without the pattern pieces. I handpicked the backzipper, all 50 cm of it! And twice! I also added a waiststay to secure the skirt.


The hat is a must on the 1st of May, but so uncomfy on!

Here's a peak of the 1st of May celebration in the 1940s:


Sain vihdoin valmiiksi mekon, joka on lojunut keskeneräisenä viikkokausia. Nyt se on kuitenkin valmis ja istuu kuin unelma!

Saturday, 30 April 2011

Candy stripes!

Hello you all! My break from the blog seems to have streched a bit longer then I meant it to. I started work again on Tuesday and the whole week has gone by so swiftly that my blog posts have been non-existent, I'm sorry for that and will mend my ways! I have a lot of great things for you; I got my hands on some old catalogues and will post about them as soon as I get them scanned. I also finished two garnments that had been hanging on my door for too long. The first you'll see today!

The candy striped fabric was a sale find and my plan was to make it in to a 60's summer dress. But then I found another fabric and decided to make the dress from that (I'll show you that tomorrow). So the candy striped fabric had to go back to my stash. Then one day I had a terrible urge to make something fast and simple, a circle skirt would be perfect I thought! I went to Casey's blog and read the instructions on her circle skirt and was up and ready to go. Until I found I didn't have enough of the candy striped fabric for it. Oh well, I changed my plans a bit. I took the back skirt pieces from the McCall 7686 pattern I had made a while ago and cut two skirt pieces on the fold. Then I only needed to cut a waist band and sew the whole thing together! I handsew the zipper as usual, but ended up machine stiching the hem. The skirt is unlined and perfect for summer! And for the First of May of course!

My trusted McCall.

Frills, stripes and some gold accents and I'm ready to go!
Close up on the fabric. I love!

I'll be back tomorrow with the 60's dress! And I'll be posting another Inspiration post on Monday. It's my favorite one so be sure to check it out!

Hauskaa vapun attoa! Tein pikaisen hameen suloisesta karkkiraitaisesta puuvillakankaasta. Huomenna vuorossa on kukkakuosinen mekko 60-luvun kaavasta.

Thursday, 21 April 2011

Happy Easter!

I'm going out of town for the holidays, so there will be a small break on posting on my blog. I hope you'll all have a very peaceful and a happy easter! I'm going to spend my Easter celebrating my nieces birthday, eating mämmi and knitting, I already have a good start:

Pidän blogista taukoa pääsiäisloman ajan, mutta neulomukset kulkevat mukana! Oikein rauhallista ja mukavaa pääsiäistä! Muistakaa syödä mämmiä!

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Getting knitty

I've been in a little bit of a sewing slump the last few days. I have traced some patterns for future projects but I haven't taken the sewing machine out from its hidey-hole. There's still a skirt and a dress that both need hemming, and then they're done. (Although today as I was watching the dress hanging on it's hanger I started to wonder whether it would be a good idea to rip the skirt part out and make it into a wiggle skirt after all..) So in the meantime when I'm trying to decide what to do with it and while I'm getting my sewjo back (what a great word!) I thought I'd post something about knitting! I realised I haven't done that yet so here's a first one.

The neverending scarf. I believe I started it three years ago and it's halfway through now. lol. But it will be beautiful whenever it does get finished.

Knitting is something that I like to do, but also something I get bored with easily. I like making mittens and socks and hats and small things like that because they're quickly done and there's always something happening in the pattern. Where as scarfs in particular are a nightmare for me to finish. Last fall was propably the first time I was able to finish a scarf in a matter of weeks, this due to the fact that I was using large pins and a colourful yarn so it didn't get boring. lol! My challenge now is to make a sweater. I've never done one before but the vintage patterns are just so beautiful that I have to have at least one in my closet. The problem here however is, that I haven't been able to find a nice vintage knitting pattern in Finnish. It's a totally different thing to read sewing instructions in a foreign language opposed to knitting instructions, so I thought it would be wise to start with my mothertongue. Luckily I did find some comtemporary patterns that have that vintage feel and seem easy enough to knit. This summer therefore I'm going to make one of these knits from Novita magazine:

 Both of the grey knits are more like tunics, but I thought I'd make them without the hip part and start at the waist. Also I would add lenght to the sleeves in the cableknitted one and make the collar maybe a little lower. The lovely white cardigan might be a little over my skill level, but I had to add it just because it's so pretty!

Some of my loss of sewjo was undoubtedly caused by a missed friend who came today for a few days visit:

My sweet Emma

Wishing you all heaps and heaps of sewjo!

Inspiration week 2: Casey and her Elegant Musings

This weeks inspiration is a no-brainer to you I'm sure. Casey is someone who seems to inspire us all and her take on the vintage patterns and sewing (and knitting!) inspire me too. Casey's blog Elegant Musings was the very first vintage sewing related blog I ran into. I remember that I was looking for vintage garnments on the Internet and had read style blogs to find them, and somewhere from there I came to Casey's blog and was immediately enchanted by her style. I read all of her posts in one sitting and after that I was hooked, not only to her blog but on vintage sewing as well. So it's Casey I have to thank for starting sewing again! The thing I love about Casey and her blog is that she is so genuine in what she does. She knows her style and isn't afraid to try something new. Her sewing seems always immaculate and her pictures are just beautiful! She has some wonderful tutorials on vintage style and of sewing of course! If you haven't checked those out yet, be sure to do so! I especially love the 50's headband tutorial.

Here are some of my favorite pics and projects that Casey has made. By clicking the picture you'll get to the related post on Casey's blog. All the pictures are snapped from those posts.


P.S. My intention was to post some outfit photos today, but my allergies have gotten a hold of me and released the red-eyed monster. I'll spare you from those images and post the photos on some other day.


Toisen viikon inspiraation lähteenä on Floridassa asuva Casey, jonka blogi toimi innoituksenani aloittaa vintage-ompelu.

Monday, 18 April 2011

A day's break

I'm a bit shocked about the outcome of our general election. So in the mist of this disappoitment and absolute state of horror, I'm going to wrap myself in blankets and eat some easter chocolates. I'll be back posting again tomorrow. 

Friday, 15 April 2011

Friday indulgence

I've been hunting down a pair of nice spring shoes for a while now. I was hoping for a pair of  Chelsea Crew shoes, but they seem to have been sold out everywhere. I also got to thinking about the possible extra taxes I might be paying if I ordered them accross the sea, so I went to town to find a replacement. Lucky enough I did find a nice pair that have that 40's feel to them too, don't you think?

The shoes I wanted..

...and the shoes I found!

Since I was feeling like indulging myself a little more, I went to my favorite goodies shop and took home some new kitchen attire. And to accompany them I had to get this Karen Blixen book after I saw the cover. The film is one of my favorites and the Edwardian dresses as well, of course!

New coffee jar, hazelnut coffee and a breakfast cup to accompany the book.

My favorite outfit from the film.

Karen Blixen herself.

I do have something else for you to show too; pictures of a dress I finished earlier this week! This dress was meant to be a muslin for the real thing, but in the end I started to like the dress so much that I finished it. The bodice is of thin cotton, part of an old sheet, and the skirt is made from a thrifted children's duvet cover. I added a red satin band to give it some color. I was inspired by Sunni's wonderful use of colours. The thin cotton makes it a must to wear a slip under, but I wear them all the time anyway, so it doesn't matter so much. Because the dress is originally a muslin, it has some tucks and seams that the patterns doesn't. There's a seam in the front skirt piece, where I had to take it in some. And the weird pleats in the neckline are additions too. I actually sewed them right before taking the photos. The bodice didn't fit right and the neckline felt too big, so I simply sew a pleat on the front. The strange thing here is, that the dress I made after the muslin, don't have this problem at all. It doesn't have the sleeves either so maybe that's where the real problem is.

I'm totally channelling Hugh Grant in this one, hehee..

Click the picture to get to the video!

Have a blissful weekend!


Perjantain kunniaksi löysin uudet kevätkengät ja ihania posliineja keittiöön!

Thursday, 14 April 2011

Evening gown inspiration

After our shopping odyssey to the button wonderland, the girls and I got to talking about the annual gala that our University Student Council hosts every year. None of us has ever been to that classy affair and we came to the conclusion, that this year is the last chance to participate in it. We've all spent a hefty amount of time educating ourselves and are finally close to graduating (it takes usually at least 5 years to get a master's degree in a Finnish university, just so you know). So when the gala is held next november we'll be there! And you know what that means! Evening gowns! I do have one in my closet but since the vintage pieces I've seen are so stunning, I thought I'd give one ago. I thought I'd make a long post about all the possible patterns I might use and the colours and fabrics. But now it seems I've found all of them already, in one day! I know I should think more about the fact that there's 6 months to the gala, and I might change my mind, but still, what can you do when you find something you just love, eh?

The deep green satin I bought yesterday started the whole thing, and late last night I started to picture the perfect dress for that fabric. If only I could draw then I could show what I pictured, but luckily I don't have to since today I found that exact pattern from Etsy! I was looking for a blouse pattern, when I stumbled into this wonderful late 30's pattern. It's a daydress but by lengthening the skirt it will become the dress for me! Here it is:

The neckline and the drapes along the waistline makes this perfect! Just picture it floorlength in deep dark green satin with a sparkling broche, or in chiffon with a satin slip under it, kind of  like the view B in this:

 And hair done like the ever graceful Rita Hayworth:

I can't wait for the pattern come so I can start with muslin!

If you wondered what ever happend to the blouse pattern I was looking for, then ehem, I ended up buying yet another dress pattern... But I reasoned this with the patterns multifunctionality. The bodice part will work as a blouse pattern, as long as I lengthen it a bit. Great reasoning, right? (lol)

It seems that my blog has doubled its readers in a day! Thank you so much! I'm already thinking of hosting a give-a-way when the time is right to thank you properly.


Kerrankin on aihetta juhlaan ja juhlapuvun ompeluun! Sovin muutaman ystävän kanssa, että tänä vuonna osallistumme ylioppilaskunnan vuosijuhlaan! Samalla voin siis ommella itselleni juhlamekon 30-luvun kaavan mukaan! Juhlat on vasta marraskuussa, mutta kaava ja kangaskin on jo hankittuna. Täytyy siis vain toivoa, etten muuta mieltäni liian monta kertaa ennen sitä.

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

A little piece of heaven

My friend Kristiina is a true sewist, that is she has some schooling in sewing and actually knows how to sew, and she was going to a sewing notions shop that I've never heard of before, called Irtico. She's making a dress for our mutual friend Anne, who also came along. I joined them for a brisk day walk, since the place was just accross the river, and  also cause I couldn't resist the temptation (lol). The shop was hidden in the old Barker weaving mill (a place where my granny and her parents, the original Malmikkos, actually worked in the 30's and 40's) and when we got there I felt like I was walking in to a dream! Shelves and shelves filled with buttons, threads, zippers and along the back wall even fabrics! I could've melted there and then I tell you. My friends knew exactly what they wanted so I was left alone to wonder what to take with me. And to top it all, all the fabrics were half off and the buttons 5 cents a piece! I guess in the end the overwhelming abbundance of drool worthy notions made me settle for just a tiny bit. I also figured that now that I know where the place is I can go there anytime, since it's only a ten minute bike ride away.

I had to have these, since they have the exact same color as the lavender satin I thrifted I while back.

These are going to a summer top that has been a U.F.O for quite some time.

These yellow buttons will brighten up some lucky dress!

And these olive buttons I got for the Ceylon dress. All I need to so is to find the fabric to go with these, hehee.

Too bad the picture doesn't show the real color, this is actullay a really deep green satin that I simply had to have. It was half off, and cost 6 euros per meter, I took 3 meters with me home and am now constantly thinking of getting some more..

I finished one dress today and tomorrow I'll try and finish a skirt and another dress, so outfit photos are bound to come soon!


Ompelijaystäväni johdatti minut tänään uuteen ompelutarvikeliikkeesee, joka sijaitsee ihan liian lähellä, hehee. Paikka oli täynnä ihania nappeja ja vetoketjuja ja lankoja ja nauhoja. Oli vaikeaa tyytyä vain vähään mutta se onnistui, vaikka napit olivat vain 5 senttiä kappale! Jos paikka kiinnostaa, käykää täällä.

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

My first blog award and some new patterns!

I was so surprised and delighted when Annabelle from Annabellepumps told me that she'd nominated me for the Liebster Award! Thank you so much Annabelle! The award goes to new bloggers and their blogs that have less than 300 followers.This way they get word out to people to go and check their blogs out. I too have a few blogs that I think deserve this honor hands down and here they are:

Annabelle herself is on my list even though she already got the award. But there's no harm in prizes when you can make dresses like this.

You should definitely go and see Liz's blog at Zilredloh. She has made a bunch of beautiful clothing sewing and knitting. I fell totally in love with this vintage knit she just finished up. I can't believe it's her first one!

I'd also like to nominate Marie from A Sewing Odyssey for her inspiring blog. How I would love to get my hands on her fabric stash, just take a look at these.

And to top this great day I have these wonderful patterns to show you that came yesterday. I do feel a bit sorry for the mailman for having to carry all this to my door, but he did make me oh so happy!

A basic 60's shirt dress. You can never have too many of these, right?

The peplum and the scalloped collar made this absolutely irresistible.

This is my favorite one and the one I was most anxious to get! A definite number in my fall wardrobe, once I get the hang of bound buttonholes, that is.

And these came too. The belt buckle is from the 30's, I only have to figure out how to make it in to a belt. Don't you think that the embroidery would go great with some dark coloured velvet creation?

And finally a little peak at my ongoing project:

Have a great day my lovely readers!


Sain ihka ensimmäisen blogipalkinnon tänään! Mahtavaa! Sain myös suunniteltua käyttöä eilen tulleille uusille kaavoille.