The Top: Part One

This is McCall’s 7127 – a pattern that I almost didn’t purchase. I had been doing some online pattern shopping one evening, as one is apt to do, and I came across this super cute, dropped shoulder, crossed back top designed for a somewhat stable knit. You see, about two years ago I stumbled across Girl Charlee Fabrics (most likely through links from other bloggers) and was completely overwhelmed by the sheer amount of knit fabric! In the town I live in, thankfully there is a fabric store, but there’s only one, and this one doesn’t stock much besides polyester sweatshirt fleece. Which is fine, sometimes, but my preference for sweatshirt fleece really does run towards bamboo. I digress; so I got really caught up in purchasing all-the-knits in lengths of about 4-5 yards per fabric/pattern. The massive thing I didn’t consider, was that knits come in all sorts of weights, and textures, and opacity. Of course I didn’t order any swatches either. One of the challenges of living in Canada, is that ordering a swatch means you may or may not be able to order the fabric once the swatch shows up and you decide you like it.

So, being the sane person I am, I just went for it and ordered – a lot. This bird fabric, while I very much like the pattern, ended up being much too lightweight and sheer, to be used for its intended purpose of a dress. Instead, it’s more of a t-shirt weight, so I have made up 5 different tops now in this fabric. I still have this one, and I think the other 4 have found homes with my friends. I am a big believer of “just put a bird on it”, but “just put a bird on 5 of them” seemed a bit much, even for me.

When just standing and not trying to pose for a photo I am assured that the back hangs much nicer than what it’s doing above here. That being said, it is my backside, so I can’t confirm this statement. I made this up in a straight size 10 with no alterations. This, in and of itself, is a miracle. I thought for sure that this would take some folding and manipulating to get it to sit the way I wanted. I really like the top and have, as I’m sure you guessed, made multiples.

The really interesting thing I found with this top (aside from the fact that it took only a few hours from cutting to being completely finished) is that when I did a quick look on Pattern Review there were (at the time) only 3 reviews and they weren’t terribly positive. Please know that I am not saying the reviewers did or said anything they shouldn’t have, I’m simply mentioning that this pattern was a perfect fit for me and my body, and it’s interesting how different we are all shaped. Also interesting to note is that this top doesn’t look very good on my friends.

Please excuse the wrinkle on the bust;  I had my photographer for only a set amount of time and I wanted to get as many things photographed as I could. Clearly I didn’t realize the hangup that had occurred.

This second top I made with a very light weight cotton jersey (another Girl Charlee purchase) and used a woven rayon for the back; I was interested to see if I could mix and match fabrics. It works, but I’m not sure that I love the way that it drapes. Again, you can’t really tell as I have my hands up (I have no idea what I was trying to accomplish by this pose…) but when my arms are down, it doesn’t drape quite like I had hoped it would. That being said, it does still get worn with a pair of white linen pants and I quite like the “Hamptons” look that it conjures.

Has anyone else tried and liked, or disliked, this pattern? Do tell…!

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Back with something… New? The sorta camas blouse.

Well, it is a new make. Actually, two new makes, but it’s based off a pattern that I have already made once (okay, okay, I’ve made it twice) and now modified, have made it twice more.

This is actually the second of the two tops that I made. But before I get to the top(s) I want to tell you about work. Well, not really work per say, but I happened to have been at work when I was inspired to make this top. I end up at a lot of networking events for work, which means I get to see a lot of different styles on a lot of different people. For someone like me, it’s certainly one of the perks of the job. So, I was at an event and there was a woman who was wearing a long sleeve top that had a very cool twisted front. This of course sent me down the rabbit hole of trying to mentally take it apart and figure out how it was made. To be honest, I might have missed a bit of the conversation that was happening as I was trying to figure out the construction order… But I covered my tracks well enough (in the conversation) and managed to work out a pattern hack I thought would work.

Enter the Thread Theory Camas Blouse. I made this top a few months ago so I can’t quite remember what I did to modify it, but I think I I just extended the front pieces and removed the neckline trim.

This was a meter of silk that I purchased for a dress but never ended up using, so I stuck this in the washer and dryer (tough love) and cut into it. This is actually the wrong side of the fabric, I wasn’t a big fan of the shine of the right side. As I mentioned, this is top two. The first one (seen below) was made of a polyester in a really great print. I loved it so much I decided I needed it in silk. Well, this silk was a beast to work with and it left me a bit jaded with the top itself. I have worn it a few times, but ended up having to hand sewing the front crossover closed. Ask me how I found out the front cross in a silk was too floaty to stay closed; work function.

This was the first one I sewed – I love it! The weight is just perfect; it’s not clingy or staticy, and the drape sits well with just a small stitch to keep the top closed where I want it to sit. I wear this for work, so I kept the neckline modest, but someone could have a lot of fun with this if wearing a bra wasn’t on your list of “things I need to do”.

Got any good pattern hacks? Spaced out in the middle of a conversation because you were trying just a little bit too hard to determine how to make something? Please tell me I’m not the only one…