Navy border print top: Newlook 6471

If you’ve been reading my blog posts recently you’ll be detecting a theme – stash busting and dated patterns. Here’s another example.

I’ve had the pattern for at least five years and the fabric for ten.

Yep- still keeping it real with wearing wrinkles from a morning of sitting, again

This pattern was a freebie in a sewing magazine I purchased whilst travelling. I rediscovered it recently whilst organizing my small pattern stash (ahem, not mentioning the extensive Burda magazine collection…).

I’d pulled out the fabric whilst looking through my fabric stash for all fabrics suitable for tops to go with my two new skirts (the mustard and turquoise ones). Why not put the pattern and fabric together I asked myself? The worst that could happen was bad pattern meets lovely but incompatible fabric.

Inspired by Giedre of Giedre Style who recently made a long sleeved top from a border print and put the border print on the sleeves, I decided to do the same. In hindsight, this very deep and linear border was not the best choice for sleeves, because the upper ‘line’ of the border looks a bit like a dropped sleeve seam, which I don’t like on me, but I sort of love the top anyway!

The fabric is a cotton silk woven from a local designer end of bolt sale in November 2012. I miss those sales! She’d used the fabric in a sheath dress with an overlay of the border running down one shoulder. I’d always thought I’d replicate it. But no. I made a border sleeved top instead.

I made some small changes to the sleeves. I cut the bottom of the sleeve out on the selvedge – I didn’t curve the edges up as per the pattern. This doesn’t seem to noticeably make the sleeves hang wrong.

The pattern has the ‘cuffs’ on the bias. Instead I cut the cuffs out double the suggested width and not on the bias- I used the same part of the border that the sleeves ended on. I sewed the cuffs on folded into thirds- resulting in a 2.5 cm finished width.

The sleeves turned out shorter than I expected given the pattern envelope photo. Other reviewers noted the same. Next time I’ll make the sleeves 5 cm longer. The shorter sleeves might have been because I made a size smaller (18) than my measurements suggested, and I have broad shoulders.

I cut the neck tie in two pieces due to fabric restructions. A centre back seams is not a problem though. Made it easier to orient my KATM label!

I made the high low hem of Style D rather than the regular hem of style A. I paid a lot of attention to centering the mirrored pattern on the front and the back.

More wearing wrinkles

But completely disregarded aligning the pattern horizontally. Which is a problem when you make the high low hem of Style D rather than the regular hem of style A because you think the high low hem will look good when you wear it untucked

Its about 4 cm out. So annoying. Only noticeable when worn untucked of course. So you know how I’m going to avoid that issue!

I like this pattern a lot more than I expected to, so another one is on the cards.

There’s probably lots of sewists out there who bought the sewing magazine with this pattern. But it doesn’t seem like it has been used much – not many reviews on Pattern Review. Is it just that we don’t value things we get for free? Or did the modeled photo put people off? Certainly didn’t encourage me to make it!

A dress for Ruthie’s wedding

Weddings are a great excuse for a new dress.

Felicity had liked style 110 in the May 2010 Burda Style since the magazine arrived in our letterbox, and now we had an excellent reason to make it up.

The style has lots of nice details: pintucked bodice and fluttery sleeves (more than intended by the pattern drafter- more about that below)

The bodice has a fairly low scooped and wide neckline. Fashion tape was useful here to keep the great aunts and uncles calm and a strapless bra stopped the worry about straps showing.

Felicity added a vintage scarf in just the right colour (of my mums) as a belt. Lucky I keep all that stuff!

Technical details

Pattern: BurdaStyle 05-2010-110B

Size: 17-21, I made a 19 (the petite version of a 38) with a 15 mm FBA.

Fabric: Cotton voile from Spotlight lined with white cotton batiste

Changes I made:

The major change was unintentional. I misread the pattern piece number for the sleeves (4) for the number to cut out (should have been 2).

It was sort of clear that the straight part had to be sewn onto the back bodice, but how was I supposed to sew the two sleeve pieces together to make one sleeve? (wish I had consulted the instructions a bit better!).

I sewed the smaller concave curved edges together (and very nicely too with French seams).

This gave an exuberantly fluttery sleeve, but I had to subsequently trim some of the straight edge off the front side of the sleeve piece to get it to fit the neck line.

The sleeve still extended a little past the neckline down the edge of the first tuck. I’ve drawn the edge in below, in yellow

For the record, this is how it should have gone together:

The other change was to move the side zip to the right (Felicity is a leftie).

I used French seams for all seams except between the bodice and the skirt. I finished the sleeve and skirt hems with a rolled hem.

All four sewing machines in my fleet were used for this project:

  • Bernina for the bulk of the sewing
  • Elna overlocker to finish the bodice skirt joining seam
  • The other Elna for the invisible zip insertion (still don’t have the Bernina foot for that)
  • Janome for the rolled hem (same).

At least the machines are not going to seize up from lack of use!