I have been trying to do a bit more pattern drafting. Often I just get carried away with the idea that it is far more convenient to just cut into an already drafted pattern and take it from there. However, I have spent quite a lot of money towards books, classes and tools on pattern drafting so I must make more of an effort.
I decided I wanted to make a drop shoulder tee-shirt which was inspired by this Boden top.
As it happens I had an easy fit tee-shirt sloper from when I used Metric Pattern Cutting for Womenswear by Winifred Aldrich.
I drafted the sloper about 2 years ago so I decided to play around with that.
I started off with the basic tee-shirt sloper and I went on to follow the instructions for dropping the shoulder. The instructions don’t give you any further info regarding the sleeve pattern piece so I used my own logic by gently drawing an opposing curve with roughly the same amount taken off. Eventually, I stumbled upon a great post<link here> which explains in great detail the technicalities of the dropped shoulder.
I decided that at this point it would be a good idea to make a toile as I hadn’t made one yet. I used some jersey fabric that had been in my stash since 2014 – I bought it on EBAY during a late night browsing session (I have since managed to break that bad habit). I think it’s a viscose jersey which is very comfortable to wear. I also quite like the Argyl print :-).
For the neckband I measured around the neckline once I had finished and deducted 30% of the measurement – added my seam allowances and voila – a neckband that snaps perfectly against my body.
My next step with this draft will be to create the yoke pattern pieces and to drop the shoulder a bit further. The next iteration will be colour blocked to see if the proportions work well.
This was a quick refreshing project as I was not having to think about the instructions or whether I may have missed out something – if I can hang on to that feeling it would help me focus on doing more drafting. Do you prefer drafting your own or find it easier to use patterns?
I made this after buying the pattern during the 12 days of Christmas sale. It was a bargain at £5. Here is the line drawing.
My thoughts are that it is very quick to sew up and took one sitting to finish. The sleeves are very straight forward and there is no easing involved. The most challenging part for the beginner might be the mitred corners. The sizing was spot on and I didn’t make any alterations at all.
Personally I feel like the side vent is too high for a winter garment given that its supposed to keep me warm and cosy. With my poor circulation I would feel this gap acutely. In winter I wore it layered over thermal sweater underneath. The fabric is a wool jersey that I bought form Fabworks. It washes in the machine and I tumble dry it on low – that seems just fine. I have since washed this about 5 times now with no problems.
I went to the US during the half term holiday and we had one day of sightseeing with the kids in New York. Here is what I made to wear for said day in New York :-). Its another Vogue 1314 dress in delicious Art Gallery Fabric. For the whole story click on this link here.
For this post I am looking at the pink fitted shirt and the yellow maxi skirt.
Sewaholic Granville and I got back a long way. See here <link>. Its a tried and true patterns that I love.
I had already seen the shocking pink fabric at the Shuttle in Shipley before deciding on the SWAP colours. Once my colours were settled, I was forced to go back to The Shuttle (I want to be clear on this – I did NOT want to go to a fabric shop but in the spirit of SWAP I had to – I was a reluctant fabric shopper – those other fabrics followed me home – I was reluctant but I am so proud of myself for my restraint). Luckily it was still there when I went back and I bought 3 meters of it. Its a stretch cotton sateen that was interesting to work with.
I cant say its been my best sewing experience ever. I found that the sateen had a strong needle memory and I couldn’t unpick the fabric without creating a visual disturbance. I quickly caught on though and started using wonder clips instead of pins where necessary. I also needed to use a walking foot to prevent it stretching out as I sewed. It also why I opted not to topsticth the button placket.
Because of the stretch nature of the fabric it is very comfortable. Pictures do not do this fabric justice. Its is very bright pink. As in incredibly in your face unapologetic pink. It makes me happy.
Yellow Maxi Skirt
For the maxi skirt I used the skirt portion of the Anna dress. I love this pattern and have made it several times already. The fabric was hard to come by. I wanted a really bright sunshine yellow. I did something I haven’t done before – ordering loads of swatches. I must say that made me feel very grown up indeed. I eventually found the right colour and weight from an Ebay shop called (apologies in advance to any brexiters reading this) EuroFabrics. Its a very beautiful high quality stretchy crepe with viscose fabric that has a micro texture. It has a bit of give on the cross grain which makes for a very comfortable wear.
I sewed up the skirt but while checking fit I realised that I wanted pockets. I try to add pockets where I can in a way that doesn’t interfere too much with the design lines. Because this skirt is close fitting at the hip, in seam pockets would not have worked. So I decided to draft quasi-patch pockets that attach at the princess seams. I felt like this was the most sympathetic addition of pockets.
I still have the option of cutting out the thigh slit but as yet am undecided. I quite like it as is for now. Initially the plan was to add a narrow waistband but I didnt like after the initial basting – it made it even more high waisted that I was envisioning. So it was Petersham ribbon to the rescue!!! The only fly in the ointment , however is that I did think it needed lining but when I wore it for pictures – I could see my panty lines – as I grow older I get less keen on VPLs on my own self. I have since bought some lining to add which is an easy fix. I will only line the upper third of the skirt. The other option is to go commando when in this skirt and……. mmm……..again as I get older I am less keen on the whole going commando thing 🙂
So here we are reader, the first 2 of my 11 SWAP2017 blogged. Whats next? The orange skirt I think….
Thanks so much for stopping my little corner of the interwebs. Until next time,
Welcome to my 6th Minerva Craft Blogger Network project! When I signed up for this I thought there is plenty of time to get just 1 project per month; its actually incredible how quickly the time flies. Anyhow I made another jumpsuit! And I LOVE it! You can read all about it here <link> but here is a peek 🙂
I had missed sewing with linen over the colder months so when I saw this pattern I decided to have a go with some linen that has been in my stash a long time. The lace used for the contrast was something I picked up from Bombay Stores in Bradford. It was quite costly at over £20/meter but I bought a half meter during their 20% off sale. The colour matched the linen perfectly so I knew I would use it for a yoke or something similar. Continue reading →
Today I am sharing my tester version of the Delia top which is a pattern that was released just before or after Christmas last year. I signed up when I saw that it had raglan sleeves.
I decided that I wanted a peplum after I had cut out the hip length variation and saw no reason why I couldn’t add the peplum too :-).
I double-faced the peplum so I wouldn’t have any hemming to do. I also added cuffs to the long sleeves to avoid hemming. Sewing it up was quite easy and I thought the instructions were great making this a beginner friendly pattern.
The fabric has been in my stash for about 2 years now. I had bought it to make a Moneta dress but I fell out of love with the idea of an apple green Moneta. It’s a ponte knit with a lovely sheen. I used just under 1m to make this and my fabric is 57″ wide.
The hip length variation is not supposed to have a peplum – that is one of the 2 design changes I made. The other being the cuffs. In hindsight, I realise that I suck at pattern testing because I should have made it as it was supposed to and report back on that. I will do that in the future if I ever find myself pattern testing again.
Fit wise I thought it was true to size. I cut the size 10 based on my bust measurement and despite the wrinkles, it has a good fit. It’s also very comfortable. The one thing I will change though is the neckline. It’s a bit too high on me – I will lower it by about 1/2″.
I forgot to mention that this is not a sponsored post. I was given the PDF file for free but everything else was bought with my own money. There was no stipulation that testers had to blog about their make. I am sharing it because I like this top and I have been wearing it most weekends.
Thank you so much for stopping by! Until next time Happy Sewing All!
Peace and love,
P.S. You can watch me prattling on about it below 🙂
Here is a top I made last year near the festive season. The fabric was left over from my twins Xmas dresses here. It’s an underrated pattern called Simplicity 1317 which has raglan sleeves.
My first one still gets worn loads especially on weekends. I had to lengthen the arms by 10cms as they were too short before. I think this sort of style has a lot of mileage. I am glad I bought it during my early pattern buying sessions.
The fabric is of a lightweight drapey variety. Sewn up on the overlocker it leaves an awful of lint behind but it more than makes up for it by being a super quick make. It has good stretch recovery and I would buy this fabric again if I came across it. I think I’d like a sheath dress in this fabric….with a low plunging neckline….Tangentially, I think this pattern could easily lengthen into a dress.
The cuffs and the hem band were cut on a different grain – insufficient fabric – but I think I mostly got away with it. The neckband was the only casualty. Which makes me think about grain and its importance with stretch fabrics – perhaps there is more wriggle room than with wovens…I digress.
Sizing wise I actually felt that this was true to size. I cut the size Small based on my bust measurement and I am amazed that there was not the usual excess ease I associate with BIG 4 patterns.
Some more pictures from one of the Xmas dos that had a Santa’s Grotto for the kids…
****I am not supposed to have favourites but the butterfly is just perfect!******
I feel resplendent in this top and sure enough it was worn to a couple of Christmas events where I was trying to pull off festive nonchalant chic as way of covering up my ever bulging tum ( all that festive feasting was intent on revealing itself!). Currently, crunches and planks are now de rigueur until that festive tum is banished!
Off to my yoga mat…..you know resolutions and all that…..la di da…..
Thanks for stopping by and until next time Happy Sewing all!
Today’s post is a super quick one to share a very simple top. I made this from an old Burda magazine that I bought on Ebay last year. Here is a picture of it
It so happened that I was looking for a simple roll neck pattern and before I went buying or drafting a new one – I decided to browse my growing Burda Magazine collection. So glad I did that because I had never registered this pattern before. I quite like that it doesnt have a neck seam – makes for faster sewing.
I had 1m of John Kaldor Isabelle wool jersey that I bought in June. I just managed to fit this pattern and I was left with very satisfying slivers of fabric that indicate a most efficient use of the yardage!
I love this fabric and I have bought 2 more meters of this colour to make a dress.
Construction wise it comes together very quickly. I did not make any alterations to the pattern. I didn’t finish the roll neck edge as my fabric doesn’t unravel. I set in the sleeves and though it wasn’t the best job – it doesn’t look too bad. I finished the hems with a narrow zigzag. The sleeves are meant to be longer so that they have a ruched effect – love that.
I want to make another in black and gunmetal grey. Its a great foundation piece for my wardrobe.
So this makes my 12th Burda make this year and my goal has been reached. Here’s to more Burda makes from me in 2017!
Here is another Burda make as I race towards the end of the year in which I must make at least 12 Burda garments. I do really like BurdaStyle Magazine and I am keen to get a 12 month subscription.
This is from the 12/2014 issue and it was the featured sewing course pattern which is great because its the only one that Burda will hold your hand and walk you through the entire process (very nice of them). Here is the line drawing.
I cut my usual size 38 and it fits perfectly (a good reason why I am keen of getting my subscription on for 2017). I made 3 changes:
The sleeve head. It was HUGE – I mean incredibly poofy and combined with my broad shoulder I looked somewhat ….odd. I reduced it by a good 2″ to get to this ‘poof’ which IMO is a good balance. The rest of the sleeve did not disappoint – am quite enamoured with the bishop style sleeve and exaggerated cuff.
I cut the back on a fold instead of having a centre back seam.
I omitted the zip – my ponte has enough stretch to go over my head without a zip plus I wasn’t keen on the idea of a zip against the back of my neck – its a very sensitive area for me and one of the reasons why my hair is almost always tied.
Fabric wise I used a ponte knit that was left over from a Marfy dress I made (post coming soon). I am glad I had enough of this left over as I love this colour! Its a medium weight ponte. The instructions call for stabilising the princess seams but I didn’t do that since my fabric was sturdy enough. I have worn this at least 3 times already and its holding up just fine. I did stabilise the shoulder seams though ( a standard procedure for me with all my knit projects).
Overall its a good pattern and I like that its easily adaptable into a sheath dress or add a peplum and it becomes a cute flirty dress. Go sleeveless, remove the polo neck and it will work in summer. Yes – there will definitely be more of this pattern in the future.
I am ever so pleased to share this top with you that has become an unexpected favourite of mine. It’s from the GBSB sewing book from the most recent series. The book only cost £9.99 on Amazon with free P&P. Its great value given the number of patterns that come with the book (27 I think). I would like to make quite a few of the patterns in there actually.
The pattern is the Japanese top which is similar in style to those you would find in the Drape Drape books but a lot easier to achieve in my opinion.
I was attracted to the batwing sleeves and the cowl neck. The pattern sheets in the book are well laid out and quite easy to trace. They aren’t as stacked as other patterns sheets that I have come across. I thought the instructions were very well written and a beginner would have confidently made this top. The only fly in the ointment for me was the large pattern pieces – so large that I had to staple 2 lengths of baking parchment to get the pieces ready.
I have had this interlock jersey for a while now waiting for the right pattern. The panel print has a large rose every 1 meter. I had to move the piece around and cut on a strange grain to get the rose centered on the front. I don’t think with interlock and a drapey top the grain matters too much ( I may be wrong). It came together very easily but I didn’t change the overlocker thread :-(. A choice I lament very much here in my YouTube video (link at bottom of this post)
The cowl sits okay when I am not moving about too much but when I bend over it will pop out but I have since tacked it down by hand. The next time I make it I will increase the size of the facing.
I added a cuff to the sleeve to make it longer – it’s a personal preference. I also added 2 ” to the hem so I can wear it with leggings.
Overall I really like this top and feel like I have made a one of a kind item that will get worn a lot.
I have already traced out this skirt which was the reason that I bought the book. After seeing Beth’s version I was very inspired to make it. That will be my next project from the book. Have you got this book? Have you made anything from it?