It's about exploring and sharing my creative adventures (mostly sewing these days) ~
~those activities that sometimes obsess, usually inspire, occasionally frustrate
~and always provide a delightful maze to wander through.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The Wonderfulness of Simple (aka my Holiday Top)

I'm not entirely sure how this pattern ended up in my stash, because it's, shall we say, not a style I'm normally attracted to.  But when I was looking for a simple pattern for a woven holiday top, this was the only pattern I had that filled the bill, so I'm glad I have it!

New Look 6808:

I whipped up a quick muslin of View A, with the 3/4 sleeves, and found out that it really is what they claim:  easy!   And the fit is quite nice...I may need to take a closer look at some other New Look patterns :)   I did do my usual alterations - forward/sloping/narrow shoulders, and sizing out at the waist and hips.   And I discovered a new adjustment for a gaping neckline, detailed here in my previous post.  

The pattern calls for a side zipper, but I really questioned just how helpful that would be, and definitely did NOT want to install a zip in my fabric choice, so I was relieved when just a tiny bit of contortionist wiggling allowed me to get the muslin on.   I ended up not adding the waistline darts in the final, because of my fabric choice.
Unknown fabric content (Note:  MUST keep better records!)
Note #2:  KC has this fabric as well, and she came to the rescue with her notes, indicating that the fabric is a rayon and/or cotton blend with some nylon.
The base is white, with black circles & squares woven in,
and sheer nylon cutouts throughout.
The left side of the pic shows the fabric laying on a piece of white fabric; it's laying on top of a black piece on the right side.
LOVE this fabric!
I changed a few other construction details because of the sheer bits in the fabric, and because it is very fray-prone.   I made a bias binding for the neckline, French seams at the shoulders, and doubled the fold at the hemline.  I really should have done French seams at the sides as well, but I wanted to have the option to shape, if necessary.   Shoulda coulda woulda.....  I had already discovered that this fabric WILL fray over time, and those loose threads WILL show through the sheer bits in places like the hem/facing at the sleeve end.   I opted to let it be one of those "it is what it is" cases, rather than unpick.  Occasionally time restraints trump perfectionism.

I will try this pattern again, and use the darts if I want a more fitted look.

Enough words....here are the results:

The more Casual Look:

Dressier, and Tucked In:



What I like about this pattern:  Very nice fit that's adjustable with the darts, my favorite sleeve length, with a little touch of uniqueness at the sleeve hem, a neckline that works well for me, and everything is simple enough to be altered very easily.   Definitely a winner!

What I like about the top I made:   The fabric!!!  LOVE this fabric!  It can be dressed up or down, and I think this particular combo of white/black & shading is good on me, which is REALLY nice to find, because I love black and white, but often have a hard time finding shades that love me.

Lessons Learned:  
  • A gaping neckline can be fixed pretty easily - Yay!
  • If you know your fabric is fray prone, plan on french seams or binding the SA's ahead of time.  Just do it already.
  • A pattern with simple lines can be golden - sometimes you need to look beyond what's on the pattern envelope - the cheesy fabric prints & cutesy ruffles and bows - and see the great bones that hold it all together :)  (Note:  Please don't take offense if you DO like cheesy fabric prints & ruffles & bows....eye of the beholder & all that...   And truth is, I DO like those things on some people; just not me) ;-)
Now, I'm off to do a bit of gift sewing...but first, I'll leave y'all with this:

Happy Holiday Crafting, for those of you who are not taking it easy in the next few weeks....

30 comments:

  1. Love this on you! The fabric with it's sheer bits - I was just eyeing this or a similar fabric recently online, but can't remember where... Beautiful use of the fabric.

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  2. Very classic and lovely, Jilly. Love the fabric!

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  3. Love this top! The print is wonderful, and I like the simple lines.

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  4. Very nice marrying of fabric to pattern! Looks super on you...

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  5. Love the fabric and such a perfect style and fit. You look wonderful.

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  6. Beautiful top, Jilly...love that fabric!

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  7. For a style you're not normally attracted to, it turned out great! I'm nosy--where are you going?

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    1. I'll wear this to a dinner party I'm going to this weekend. Got a party in mind? ;-)

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  8. The fabric is so perfect for you, the white bits call attention to your lovely smile. Looks like a real winner!

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    1. Awww you're so sweet! Thank you (smile and blush)

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  9. That looks great, JillyBe! And I also love the peekaboo fabric - very cute!

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  10. I love the top! I happen to have kept a pretty good record of that fabric, but I'm not sure what it means. I got it from FabricMart as one of Julie's June 2011 Picks, and I saved the description, but it says "Geometric Burnout Cotton/Nylon Blend," then two lines later, "82% Rayon, 18% Nylon." ?

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    1. MWAH! Thank you KC! I thought I got it from FM, and you've confirmed it, since I was a Julie's Picks member in 2011, so that's it! I'll add the info to my post :)

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  11. This is fantastic! Simple, but perfect for that gorgeous fabric. And a great, flattering fit. I bet you get a lot of wear out of this one!

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  12. Hi there. I just followed you over from your pattern review as I'm just about to make this top. Gorgeous job and beautiful fit. Really interesting as I need to make the same alterations as you do!

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  13. Nice when a great fabric and pattern go together so well. Looks great on you, too! Enjoy the festivities.

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  14. What a great top, Jilly! I adore the fabric.

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  15. Bet it felt good to be sewing again. When I'm on hiatus, I miss it terribly. Your top is lovely. Knowing what your fabric will or will not do is half the battle.

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  16. Oh, this turned out wonderfully--you look fantastic! Great marriage of pattern/fabric. I also have a piece of this fabric, but have yet to decide what it wants to be.

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  17. Looks great on you, Jilly! It's always nice to have a simple pattern that you can uses for those unusual fabrics that you just can't resist.

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  18. this is such a cute little top - looks great on you

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  19. So adorable! And such delightful fabric. I have this pattern too and meant to make it in the summer - but didn't. Nice to know I might not need a zipper if I leave out the darts. Must make a muslin...

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  20. I love this pattern! Now I feel very cool- I have a blouse that you have made!!! A brave style maven and I have the same blouse!

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  21. Great top! Love the different tones near the top of the fabric! Beautiful!

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  22. I like simple tops like that. It looks very nice on you. On another note, today I bought up the last at Fabrix of the black/white striped knit you used for your biker chick jacket. Is it wearing well? Do you have any caveats about the fabric? Would it work for a slightly drapier style or not? Thanks.
    Lisa of BABES

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    1. Lisa, I've been wearing my jacket a LOT lately, and the fabric so far looks great, except for a small amount of pilling that's starting in the area where both my bag handle lays on my body, and my seat belt sits. It's a problem with a lot of my clothes, and I think I need a better solution - as in, a lifestyle solution...different bag, carry it on my other shoulder, get another sheepskin seat belt cover....something!

      Otherwise, I'm still loving the fabric, and have a bit more to do something else with. I think it would work well with a slightly drapey pattern; I've thought of something like a waterfall type jacket myself. I look forward to seeing what you do with it!

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    2. Thanks for the good input! I'm sorry I don't have any suggestions about how to make your purse and seatbelt kinder and more well-behaved. Time out, perhaps?

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  23. Great looking top. I think you have a TNT pattern. I have this one also, but have never made it. So it is encouraging to read your rave review.

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