Stripes; 5 stars.

This is a very quick and simple make, but it marks the domination of a pattern I’ve made unsuccessfully three times before this. I have no idea where this pattern came from but it’s one of those patterns that has never quite worked regardless of which view I have made. So, I feel I’ve earned theΒ 5 stars I’ve awarded myself.

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Elements of what resulted in three unsuccessful makes of View B alone – only one of which remains and I wear as PJs -were to do with fit, at other times to do with fabric, and also to do with finishing preference.

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So, what I changed:

  1. I straightened the side seams tapering them in where they were wanting to flare out. This gives a relaxed easy fit on my negligible hips.
  2. I chose a fabric with a bit of drape, that wasn’t too heavy or thick.
  3. I finished the next with a binding rather than turning it inside and stitching as the pattern instructed. I can NEVER get a good finish on a stretch fabric using this method, I struggle on hems and cuffs too. I’m thinking it’s time to try a twin needle?

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Because this top is only made with two pattern pieces – front and back – it’s always very deceptive as to how much fabric it requires. Usually I make a centre back seam and I can squeeze it out of about 1 metre of fabric. This time I had to do a little juggling – hence the vertical stripes on the back. I also needed to to a bit of piecing on the back seams to get the sleeve to the length I wanted so I could have the cuffs.

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All in all, I’m pretty happy with this top. It’s made from second hand fabric and still smells a little musty even after a good wash and air on the line, but I’m sure that will wear off eventually.

 

 

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35 thoughts on “Stripes; 5 stars.

  1. I’m pleased you stuck with it and have a fab top (I don’t think I would have gone back to it after several fails) I really love the stripes facing different ways and it looks great on

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    1. Thanks Lynsey. I think I just knew I could make it work if I made some tweaks, and now I’ve had success with one view, I might try some of the others too!

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  2. I like the stripes going different ways. You did a very good job with it.
    I don’t think turning in necklines works well. I’ve taken to stay stitching the seamline and cutting away the seam allowance then bias binding it. Doesn’t work on the hem but it’s good for long sleeves too.

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  3. Great top and only time gives you the confidence to realise that you can alter a pattern to whatever you like? I sometimes like a binding or a straight strip of fabric on the neckline. Remember you can add the neckline finishes on the flat, before sewing the second shoulder seam, much easier.
    You have to buy a twinneedle for hems for jersey. I couldn’t believe how great they are and I often have a pile of tshirts to shorten for my daughter and her friends!

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  4. I quite like the play of directions with the stripes! It takes the tee from basic to something more interesting! And the color is gorgeous on you, to boot.

    As to hems on knits, I really loathe turn-and-stitch for knit necklines–I feel like I never get that quite right. I just made 3 loose-fitting knit tops in very light, very wriggly fabrics, and my best results came from the following process: take a deeper hem (turning narrow hems just leads to lettuce edges, I find), in my case, 1″ total; mark the first 1/2″ from the raw edge, then turn on that marking for the last 1/2″ to conceal the raw edge (so basically, it’s just a double-fold hem); baste in place, slightly tugging/stretching the hem as you baste to flatten and ease it; give it a good press from the wrong side, and then stitch the hem, stretching slightly as you go (just like when you basted it). That whole process takes more time, but it keeps things nice and flat and I’ve gotten a ripple-free finish, even with a single needle machine hem! I do the basting by hand as well, so that I have more control as I stretch. (So sorry for the imperial measurements: I don’t know the equivalents for metric!)

    That being said, I would definitely go with a twin needle on a tight hem that needed to stretch–I hope you’ll share how that goes if you try it! πŸ™‚

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  5. Very neat matching of the stripes, Naomi. Here’s a suggestion… a scented fabric softener should eliminate any musty odors. I’d recommend washing by hand and letting the top soak for maybe 15 minutes in the water with fabric softener. Get a softener that you don’t have to rinse out. One that you add to the final rinse water, let soak and then wring and let dry.

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    1. Thanks for the tip. We are au natural with washing detergents etc so use white vinegar instead of fabric softener. I think if it’s not feeling fresher after another wash, I will soak in a white vinegar, baking soda solution and add some lavender essential oil. Good idea to put a nice smell in!

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      1. Very interesting, Naomi. We use white vinegar in handwashing to remove the excess soap. Your approach lessens the chemicals we come into contact with. I have to try your mixture. Will let you know how it works.

        Vinegar, baking soda and water also do a great job cleaning out teapots and coffee pots. I’m going to try this with my lingerie today.

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      2. There are some amazing recipes online for homemade natural laundry detergent. Very easy to make. We use baking soda and white vinegar so much around the house – super useful. Just need to be careful with wool as the baking soda can be too harsh. But there are good delicates recipes on line too! It’s a real area of interest for me.

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      3. You know what? You gave me an idea for my next RetroGlam posting. The vintage sewing book I’m using dedicates an entire chapter to hand washing clothes. I couldn’t figure out why but is seems like the 1930s was all about gently cleaning clothes and throwing away the lye based soaps and scrub boards. My Mom taught me to hand wash clothes the way it is in the book. I also use naturally based soaps like FAN soap made in China. It includes lemongrass and has a pleasant fragrance. When I can’t use that there is Zoto from Mexico. All natural and it makes great suds. The posting will include a review of the book. This will make a nice bridge while I wait for the delivery of my dressmaker supplies.

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