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Archive for August, 2009

Project Runway Season 6: Get Your Sew On!!!

It’s FINALLY here! That much anticipated season of Project Runway that almost wasn’t. Unless you have been under a rock, and don’t follow fashion, Project Runway has moved from Bravo to Lifetime after several months of duking it out between the networks. But as they say, good things come to those who wait……….and tonight the Season 6 premieres!!!

 I am a long time Project Runway fan, as are most of the Creative Chicks here at DIYStyle. And now we have even one more reason to anticipate and watch each episode as the challenge unfolds. We will be rooting for one of the contestants, a former St. Louisan AND a Stephens College fashion design alum (that’s Allyce’s alma mater too)! Qristyl Frazier is THE designer we will be on the edge of our seats cheering for…………….you go girl!

I had the pleasure of meeting Qristyl yesterday when she was here in STL, and she is a savvy, super likeable and uber talented designer. It’s so fun for us to have one of the designers on the show we can directly relate to, and follow through all of the (sometimes unreasonable) design challenges that are dolled out to them. I know what you’re thinking, NO she could not divuldge any secrets! You’ll just have to watch the show each week to see what happens. You can be sure we will. We’ll also plan to meet up with Qrystal on her next trip in, and interview her for DIYStyle. Stay posted.

Brother USA is one of our sponsors for DIYStyle, and you can be sure the designers will all be watching that clock in the workroom that bears their logo as well as using all of their sewing machines that outfit their space. We are so thrilled to have them as part of what we do at DIYStyle and their connection to Project Runway. One of my very favorite models we use on the vodcasts is the Project Runway LB6770, a sewing and embroidery machine that comes with it’s own rolling case branded with the Project Runway logo (It’s really cool……….we take them everywhere for our DIYStyle events and parties!)

So, it’s definitely time to “get your sew on”, whether spurred on by the inspiration of Project Runway, or one of the affordable and fantastic Project Runway sewing machines from Brother USA.  Let us know what you are creating. We love to see!

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Web Trendy: Plaid. You Either Love It or Hate It.


It’s almost that time of year! School is starting again. And you know what that means…back-to-school SHOPPING! Now, even though I am a 22 year old senior in college, I probably shouldn’t be getting this excited about school shopping. But, I am. For me, school shopping for college is WAY more fun because I can actually shop for clothes! I don’t have to wear a private school uniform anyyyyy longer. :) Unfortunately, I hate to say it, but I really am missing my plaid skirt. But I am in luck! Plaid is BACK and bigger than ever. I have been seeing it absolutely EVERYWHERE. Whether you want to prep it up or grunge it down, either way will work!

Plaid has been popular for the majority of the summer. Paired with a great pair of distressed jeans, it can be a great go-to outfit. Just take a peek through your boyfriend’s closet for some inspiration and maybe borrow a shirt or two! He’ll never know. Whether it’s a boyish fit or a more feminine fit, you’ll definitely look cool and casual. Heritage1981 and Forever 21 have both of these styles in tons of options.


Gossip Girl has always been known for showing the classy, more sophisticated way to wear plaid on the characters of the show; very school-girl chic. The trend will definitely be moving on into the Fall. YAY! The Twilight inspired line from Nordstrom featured on InStyle’s website shows an amazingly hot plaid jacket that is PERFECT for this season. It’s also EXTREMELY affordable! I’m loving it for sure.

Target and Anna Sui are working together to create a Gossip Girl inspired line that will be available in stores and online on September 13th. I don’t know about all you other fashionistas but I’m counting down the days on my calendar! NY Mag has released the look book here. The plaid ensemble below is inspired by Serena’s chic style. How fabulous is it?! Be on the lookout for this line because it is going to fly off the racks.


All of this chit-chat about plaid has really given me the urge to dig out my school uniform! I’m off!

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Allyce King Designs: Feathers and Leather

Pink Feather Dress

When I first began to design my senior collection almost a year ago today, I never would have dreamed that it would have turned out the way it did. Before I even began to put pencil to the paper I thought about what I like to design. I love designing and sewing swim wear as well as weekend wear outfits. I knew almost immediately that I wanted to design resort wear. I researched trend reports for the next year and envisioned my collection to be very girly and almost whimsical. With general ideas in my head, I headed to New York City’s garment district to find the fabric to match my vision. My fiancé and I had spent two whole days searching for something that would inspire my designs. At this little hole in the wall store, there it was, hanging in the window. This gorgeous piece of dusty pink tulle with embroidery and hand sewn black and copper feathers on it. It came in a five-yard panel and it started as the base of my entire collection. Immediately I pictured it as skirt on a cocktail dress. After that we visited Mood Fabrics and I was lucky enough to find a crock embossed leather skin that was the exact shade of dusty pink and copper finish to match the tulle and feather piece.

That was my jumping off point. That night I started sketching many possibilities that could come from this combo. As part of our class assignment, we were to sketch many many designs for each garment you were to create. The professor then eliminates the sketches til you have just a five for each garment. Then those are fully rendered in a fashion illustration and matching flats. The critic chose this sketch below for me to create. In just a short seven weeks everything was patterned and fitted in muslin.

Feather Mood Board

This garment was one of my last to pattern. I made all of my muslins out of tulle and pleather vinyl. For this garment I had a total of six fittings. I had first patterned this design with bust and waist darts but changed it to princess seams soon after the second fitting. It fit the bust much better this way and eliminated some of the bulk in the leather. My model Katie was great. She came in so many times so that I could fit her and make quick changes on the muslin and pattern.

When it came to sewing the leather, it was definitely a challenge. I had never worked with real leather before and it handles differently then pleather. After making this garment and other pieces with leather I learned what tools, techniques, and finishing worked best. I will talk about these tools and show you the techniques and finishings I used in an upcoming vodcast. This pic above is Katie on the runway at our Stephens College annual student fashion show…….she looked fabulous!

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