|Pattern Description: |
Misses cowl variation is cut in one piece on the bias with a center back seam. Cowl is weighted. Also includes a skirt with back princess seams and ruching.
4-20. I cut a 6 at the shoulders and bust, transitioning to a 10 at the hip. I could have used a 12 at the hip, but had fabric limitations. I sewed the lower part of the center back seam (the only seam on the top) with a very small seam allowance.
A polyester knit purchased from Kashi at Metro Textiles in April 2010 for $6/yd.
Total cost, including pattern: about $10.
Time to Make:
Once this is cut out, it is very simple to construct. It was about a 4 hour project at most.
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I love a cowl top, and this is an interesting variation with the cowl fullness at the midriff rather than the neckline. No dislikes.
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope?
Yes, except I added sleeves.
Were the instructions easy to follow?
Yes. It's a little difficult to work with the single giant piece, but the markings and drawings are good.
Pattern Alterations or any design changes you made:
-I stitched the center front seam up about 2 1/2 inches higher than marked. It was impressively low. Once I determined where I wanted that CF stitch line to end, I fused interfacing patches to both sides as suggested. I shortened the stitch length to 1 near the end, using tiny stitches for extra strength. I didn't have any issues with the stitches ripping out, though I may go back in and do a narrow zigzag at the top just for extra insurance.
-I tested out a weight in the bottom of the cowl, as directed in the instructions, but I didn't think it added a lot to the top. In my tests at home the weight did not stop the "pocket" created at the bottom of the CF seam from poking to the outside rather than staying inside the point close to the body, a phenomenon you can see in this photo. And since I was making this for vacation, I didn't want to accidentally wear this to fly in and fail the metal detector!
Now that I'm back and not going near a metal detector for a while (nor hiking many miles in the top with the weight bouncing against my sternum all the way up the mountain) I'll put the weight in and see if I like it better.
-I wanted to try out this pattern with a sleeve, because I think it would make a nice winter top in a sweater knit or other heavier fabric. I used my favorite flutter sleeve from Burda 03-2008-113 (which has a fairly standard sleeve head) and just popped it into the armscye. The armscye is cut out of this one-piece top in a very oblong shape with a point at the armpit end, kind of like an (American) football shape, so I wasn't sure how a sleeve would play with it. Other than having to set it in in-the-round because there is no side seam (I infinitely prefer to set in in-the-flat), I had zero issues with the sleeve, even with the unusual armscye shape. Knits are so forgiving. This pattern is definitely on the list for Fall/Winter sewing. Now I have an excuse to go sweater knit shopping, right?
-The only thing I don't love about this pattern is the back neck. When sewn as drafted I had serious sad little droopage/gapage at the CB neck, so I curved the seam in, taking about 1 inch on either side of the CB seam and it sits much more flush. You can see that the neckline opening is finished by turning under a narrow hem, and then folding out and tacking down a cut-on facing.
I am not crazy about this, as I prefer elastic in the back neck of a knit top. Next time I will probably create a casing using the facing and thread elastic through it, stitching in the ditch at the shoulders to catch the elastic. I do not like a gaping back neck. I could also experiment with trimming the cut-on facing off at the back only, serging in elastic and turning it down and then folding the front facing in place as before. Because there are shoulder seams, this can be done cleanly.
For my Greece trip I packed 4 dresses, 3 tops, a pair of shorts, and a pair of yoga capris. Everything got worn twice except for this top, but that's because it was new and I didn't want to sweat-stain it! I wore it on the day we hiked from Perissa beach to Kamari Beach by way of Ancient Thera, where the fashion photos were taken.
Although I only wore it once it is immortalized in my favorite photo of myself from the trip, at the "end of world" at Ancient Thera. I think you can see how happy I am (though admittedly the top didn't have *that* much to do with it).
All photos are here and the blog post is here.