A week of Couture and a travel wardrobe

On Friday 10 April my sewing friend Sandra and I drove to Armidale for a week to attend a hands-on workshop with Claire Shaeffer as our instructor.

This was all organised by Rita who owns Fabric Fair in Armidale and Rita had organised two workshops during a 2 week period.

Sandra and I had chosen to attend the 2nd week which was the Chanel Jacket Workshop.

There were 14 of us in the class from all over the east coast of Australia.  The group got on sew so well and it just amazes me how sewers bond and friendships blossom.

Rita had organised a kit for each of us which contained a pattern, fabric and all the notions to make half a jacket in a very small size.

We first focused on the sleeve as this piece lets you learn all the techniques you need to make the entire jacket, except for the chain for the jacket hem.

After two days we had a wonderful range of 14 different sleeve trims to admire.

and by the last day we had this half jacket to keep as our reference.

I was already an owner of Claire’s book and she has kindly signed it for me.

Claire also had with her quite a number of original Chanel garments for us to view and inspect (with gloves on) it was amazing to see how Chanel create the jackets, top and skirts – cutting fabric apart and then resewing it together to get the look they are after was the one that intrigued me the most.

It was a truly memorable week, Claire as a teacher was amazing and the other attendees made the week a wonderful experience and Rita for her hospitality and organising this fantastic opportunity for us Down Under.

Now I have some great ideas for my tweed I purchased from Linton last year, just need to find the time!

Travel Wardrobe

I am so used to packing light to travel I did for this trip as well, except for 2 pairs of boots just in case it got cold and we were travelling in a car.

Time Away:
8 days

Where to:
Armidale, New South Wales, Australia

Officially the start of Autumn and Rita had let us know that the first frosts for the season had been on the ground the week before we were due to arrive.  The temperature range was from 9 to 26, with the mornings and evenings being rather brisk, but the middle of the day was quite warm.

Expected Activities:
For the majority of the time sitting in a class room as well as checking out Rita’s fabric store and going out to dinner a couple of nights.

Colour Scheme:

What I packed:
(each garment is linked to its original construction post – top to bottom, left to right)

Taupe loafers
Black boots
Brown boots
Black loafers

and I forget to add to the photo my brown mercury jersey cardigan using Simplicity 2603.

This wardrobe worked out really well, all the tops went with the bottoms, my layering pieces worked with everything.  I did have to do a wash during the week but this is something I do on every trip so it wasn’t a bother.

I did take a selection of jewellery and I think this changed the look of some of the outfits.

Now it is time to confess, during out visit to Rita’s fabric store, this is what followed me home, some gorgeous lightweight “Merino State” Silk Jersey called Cayenne!

2015 Stash out:  5.85m
2015 Stash in:   15.0m

22 thoughts on “A week of Couture and a travel wardrobe

  1. How wonderful to have a class with Claire Schaeffer. I love your travel wardrobe and am trying desperately to take lessons from your beautifully coordinated wardrobe.


  2. What a great opportunity. Love your super well coordinated travel wardrobe and I look forward to seeing what you make of that gorgeous silk jersey! (another piece which will coordinate with everything!)


  3. Love reading your posts! I am soooo envious that you got the opportunity to attend Claire Schaeffer's class on 'Jackets'. That would have been my pick too.If only I didn't live so far away!!!Keep up the good work.


  4. Claire is an incredible teacher and IMO her knowledge of couture i s unrivaled. I am so glad you had this opportunity. I still have fond memories of my class last year.


  5. Oh, how incredibly wonderful! The class sounds absolutely superb. I didn't know that Claire Shaeffer was in Oz either! An opportunity missed. Love the photo of all the sleeves.


  6. Like Robyn, I'm sitting this out – I'm a little pre-occupied with the storm damage effects at the moment. So I shall enjoy watching the intrepid MMM15 participants. I think anyone that makes their own lingerie is brave – as you say, stretching and stitching lace on neatly is not easy – a real fight with the machine as well.


  7. You're off to a great start – I'm sitting this one out but I don enjoy seeing what everyone is wearing (as if I need to add anything else to my sewing list!). Undies are really fun to sew and you don't really want to stop once you start!


  8. It was a wonderful weekend away – thank you so much for organising it. Loved seeing all of your outfits – especially the cabramatta fabric envy top. I really enjoy seeing these MMM posts.


  9. You are really working that Kwik Sew pattern! I must add this one to the buy-now list. =) I'm looking forward to seeing the rest of your clothes for MMM15.


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