Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Made: Two tops for Earth and Spring 6PAC (Ottobre 02-2013-02 and New Look 6025)

This week so far I've made two tops that are part of my Earth and Spring 6PAC. They're both patterns that I've used before.

Ottobre 02-2013-02 "Summer Basic Top" in red and white fan print cotton jersey, front and back view

First, I made another Ottobre 02-2013-02, the "Summer Basics Top" that is currently my Very Favouritest Pattern Of All. This is my fourth version! It took me basically the entire time my Easter Monday dinner cooked to make it from pressing the fabric to snipping the last thread -- about 1hr 40min in total. I had a problem with my binding strip not being as stretchy as I expected so I had to recut it longer but other than that it was easy.

The red and white jersey I used was from eBay at a price of £4/m including p&p, plus the usual overheads, and as usual this top took pretty much exactly 1m. I'm going to say abou £4.50 for this top in total. The fabric is a little bit thinner than I would like but it's fine for warmer weather (should we ever have any, that is). I've nothing else to say about this really -- this is the joy of a TNT, I guess: you can just crank out yet another version without really having to think about it.

New Look 6025 in pink floral print, front and back view. The hem is straight in real life, honest.
This woven top is more or less view B of New Look 6025, except at the shorter length (like view C). This a very simple, almost-a-TNT pattern that I like a lot. I've used it once before, the same view/length and everything, right at the very beginning of my garment sewing adventures. When I made the first one I used a size 18 and did a (dodgy) FBA that somehow resulted in me cutting the armholes strangely. I actually still like that top as long as it's tucked in, weird armhole shape notwithstanding. If I wear it untucked the hemline looks terrible -- it rises in the centre front because of some combination of the dodgy FBA and futzing with the shoulders to raise the neckline, and also the fabric REALLY didn't like being folded twice and top-stitched at the hem. It made the hem weirdly inflexible and causes the top to stand away from my body. This time I overlocked, folded up once and topstitched the hem, which worked much better.

New Look 6025 side view and inside view of French seam and overlocked/folded hem
On this occasion I made a size 18 straight out the envelope. It fits OK -- it's comfortable and it doesn't pull over the bust -- but probably would have fit even more nicely with a bust dart, if I'm honest. I don't know why I persist in pretending anything without bust shaping is going to work for me. That said, I don't mind the fit on this one and I did manage to improve the neckline considerably compared to the first time I made it. Last time I ended up pulling the shoulders up because once I cut it I realized it was far too wide and low at the neckline. This time I cut the neckline 4cm narrower. I left the depth as designed at centre back but raised the centre front by 4cm as well. I think it might have been even better if I had made the neckline slightly narrower still because it still peek-a-boos my bra strap a tiny bit, but it's quite wearable.

This fabric has been in my stash almost as long as I've had a stash. I bought in May 2012 from eBay. It was only 110cm wide and I had just under 2m. The reason I was clinging to it was that, well, first, it is maybe a little more pink than I was totally prepared for, and second, the drape and texture of this fabric is divine. It's sort of soft and fuzzy, I love it, and I've had it long enough now that the pink has grown on me. It's some kind of cotton blend, nothing extraordinary I'm sure, but it really goes brilliantly well with the beige straight skirt from this collection, drapes beautifully and is generally a great piece of fabric to use in this 6PAC. I actually wasn't going to use it because I was doing that thing where I wanted to "save it" for something better, but since my motto at the moment is JUST SEW IT, I did.

Kimono sleeved tops are super wasteful on 110cm wide fabric, though. I can fit both sides of this pattern onto a 150cm wide fabric, but with 110cm I just end up with a big empty space left over that isn't really big enough for anything. The pattern envelope claims you need at least 2m of 110cm wide fabric. I started with only 1.8m ish but I had more than enough fabric. I ended up with a few scraps just about big enough for waistband facings or pocket linings. I'm going to write the whole cost of the fabric off to this top though, so that's about £5.90 inc. p&p plus overheads, so about £6.50 overall. Time-wise, it took me about an hour to trace the pattern and cut out the fabric and two hours to sew, hem and finish it off -- I did French seams which always takes some extra time and I really took my time over the neckline binding to get a nice finish. French seams are my favourite seam treatment in little tops like this. It makes the inside so neat.

So that's two more pieces of my Earth and Spring collection ticked off! I have made a decision on the final top to go into this collection -- I'll be using Burda 01-2013-130. I also decided against doing the second Ottobre tee that was in my plan for the time being -- I feel like I have enough for now. Here's the updated collection image:

I've traced out the pattern for the jacket (New Look 6911) now, but I keep staring with horror at the pieces. It's not that it's unduly complicated, it's that I'm really kind of terrified of the princess seam FBA. Luckily I have done ONE before, semi-successfully, so I'm not starting from zero. It's still unnerving though. I will probably end up doing the Burda blouse first just out of fear of the jacket. I do need to get on with it though, because I want to be able to make the same jacket pattern for The Wedding Outfit in a few weeks.