Saturday, July 5, 2014

Beco do Batman and finished V1353

I hope that everyone had a great fourth of July.  As we're winding down our time in Brazil (we leave in less than four weeks!  Egads!) I decided that it's good to revisit some of our favorite spots.  My favorite place to go is Beco do Batman or in English-Batman's Alley.  Now, I know what you're thinking, why would her favorite place in Sao Paulo be an alley.  Or you might have seen the Anthony Bourdain show about Sao Paulo.  Beco do Batman is the preeminent place for graffiti in Sao Paulo, or if you prefer street art.  I kind of like the term graffiti better, because it catches the presumed illegality of creating the art. In most South American countries, graffiti is not necessary illegal, especially in Sao Paulo.  If you've ever seen Sao Paulo, it is covered in both the street art style of graffiti and pixacao style.  (Pixacao is an own language of itself once used for political statements, but now usually used by youth to write their names and or rival gangs- here is more information.)

Anyway,  I figured since I was going to be taking loads of pictures anyway, as the art continually changes in the alley, I might as well wear my newest make.  Let's get started with the pictures.  (Warning- there are a lot!)  Oh I forgot to add that the Alley is named Batman, because the original piece of graffiti was of Batman overlooking the alley.  He's gone now, but the name remains. 

We'll start with the dress, and then end with some of my favorite pieces of art. So I've decided that it was raincoating material after all.  It's definitely waterproof, and a pain to iron.  I made it work, and even got a compliment on it by a shop assistant.  (On a side note, if you're looking for Brazilian designer clothing, the street next to the alley is great.)
Hopefully it's just the lighting, but it really looks like I'm going gray.

Here is a closer look at the top.  Notice only one row of top stitching.  We'll discuss that later.

 Here are some closer looks at the dress.  Don't look too closely at the zipper.  It's not perfect, even after six tries.  Yes... six tries.  It was cursing it by the third, but I persevered.  Granted, the sixth try was to fix the fit, but it was still five times unpicking the thing.  I had to take out an inch at the neck line tapering it to nothing at the waist.  This is a common alteration I have to make.  I took in the shoulder about a half inch.

 I gave up on serging the edges, as it's waxed cotton/raincoating/whatever.  Those edges are not going to fray.  I decided to skip the hem facing.  I used seam binding instead, so then I could just turn up up the hem and sew.  This also preserved more of the length.

For the lining I used a bemberg rayon that I had lying around.  I decided to only line the bodice, since the outer fabric decided to be fairly unbreathable.  I hoped that this would help keep the dress cooler.
I used the same black bias binding to finish the hem of the lining.  I still need the tack the lining down... And clean up those threads.  Now back to the Alley!  I'll let the pictures talk for themselves.

The lining kept on popping out.  When I got home, I added a second row of topstitching to keep it down.  I think this was the result of the silk organza interfacing.

This is one of my favorite pieces.  It's so nice and simple.


We happened upon another photo shoot.  Their outfits were decidedly more interesting than mine.

Look it's a real Space Invader.  There are actually quite of few of his works around Sao Paulo.  It's fun to try and find them.  I'm a tiny bit bummed about the Alley constantly changing.  My favorite piece has since been painted over.   I can only imagine why.  Until next time, I have a Bronte top to finish.

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