Saturday, January 25, 2014

Ceeb of Miami: Gold Lame Jumpsuit

This super glam gold jumpsuit was made by "Ceeb of Miami", and probably dates from the late 1950's.

It was recently sold by my friend Holly at her "French Laundry Co." shop on Etsy. But before it left her shop, I was able to get to see it up close, and thought I would share what I found with you.

This bustier plus capri pant combo is made from a very stretch lame fabric. The lame fabric is stiff, yet flexible, with stretch in the cross-wise grain. The capri pants are simple, with traditional darting and slits at the ankles. It has a deep metal zipper with inside placket up the center back seamline.

The bustier is sewn with all-over sequin trim in a serpentine pattern. The bodice shaping is princess seamlines, with a back zipper.

The bustier is constructed with a full bra sewn into the top. There are small removeable stays at the sides of the built in bra to keep it 'up'.

There is a fold-over edge facing around the edges. This fold-over edge is backed with elastic to be sure it fits tightly. A wide nylon fabric fly backs the zipper opening to prevent any skin pinches. Buttons are sewn into the top edge of the bustier for removable straps.

The sequin design was applied after the bodice was sewn, using a chain stitch machine. It appears that the bodice front was sewn to the pant front across the waistline seam first. At this point the sequins were applied. After that the side seams were sewn.

The center back zipper is a strong metal type. This slide shows that zipper, both open to expose that fly fabric, and zipped up. A heavy snap secures the top edge.

Overall, this jumpsuit has a surprisingly simple pattern design and uses construction methods that are not difficult. The type of boning and lining that we often expect to see in a bustier is not present here. Perhaps this is because most women would be wearing their own strapless bra, often in a 'long line' design to the waist. This would then mean that the garment does not need to provide support or 'molded' bustline shaping.

The garment label lists this as a size 12 / 34.

Garment Measurements:

Bust: 34 inches
Waist 28 inches
Hips: 42 inches
Inseam crotch to hem: 25 inches
Underarm to waist: 8 inches

If you want to sew a glam jumpsuit like this for yourself, I think it would not be difficult. By working with a good pant pattern to start, a princess seamline bustier can be sewn to that around the waistline.

Pants: try Butterick B5895, a pant with 'high' waistline and back zipper (omit the pockets), or Vogue pant fitting pattern, V1003, a classic pant that has all the right darts.

Bustier: Butterick B5419, a long line bustier that can be altered to stop at the waistline. The bodice for McCalls M6646, is perfect.

On the Ceeb website they state that they have been in business since 1942 in southern Florida.  Their main product is swimwear, I'm also interested in finding out more about jumpsuits of this type from the "Ceeb" label.  Feel free to share what you know in the comment section.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Bonnie Cashin: Mohair Blanket Coat, Up Close

This 1960's Bonnie Cashin coat for Sills was found recently by Miss A who shared it with me in an excited text message. My respose: So when do I get to see it in person!. For me, coming across a Cashin coat in a vintage or thrift store is like finding a colorful sea shell on a wide sandy beach. Eureka!

This coat has that classic Cashin silhouette: kimono sleeves attached in one with the body. This allows that bold plaid check to continue out onto the sleeves without breaking up the graphic look.

But what stops the show here is a great, dramatic cape like collar. On closer study, it seems to have been inspired by a triangle shawl shape. Imagine folding a large square wool shawl into a triangle then draping it around your shoulders, over a coat. This has that same effect.

What pushes it over the top is that this shawl collar is cut from a wildly colored double cloth: fuzzy amber, orange and red colors on the outer mohair textured side with a blinding magenta pink and red on the other smooth surfaced side. That contrast is used to its advantage with this collar design since how its worn or draped can effect whether that contrast is seen or not.

Narrow suede trim binds off all edges. The coat is not lined, so that bright pink and red side is clearly seen when worn. Like so many Cashin wool coats, this one has roomy pockets in the side seams. It was designed with a very wide hook fastening at the neckline that at one time were covered in suede. The center front would hang loose and unfastened.

I will share the inner workings of this design and the technologies she used to create the look in my next post on this great coat.

If you are interested in seeing more designs from Bonnie Cashin, you will want to check out the links below:
Bonnie Cashin Online Resource, UCLA, Biography with Photo Archive
Bonnie Cashin, my Pinterest Board (a growing collection of images)