There are times when I long for the suits and dresses I wore in the 90's - totally different career - but for the most part, I'm content in dressing casually. You all know I have easy access to wonderful fabrics perfect for a business career. But that's not my life right now, so I'm sewing for the life I'm living.
Making top after top after top gets a bit dull, so I do need to switch it up a bit now and then. You'll be seeing some different types of garments here soon. I'm just finishing up an outerwear jacket, and I have a linen/rayon shirt to make for spring. For now, though, it's tops!
This is top #3, sewn from a light-to-midweight ponte from Marcy Tilton.
I started with my current TNT top pattern, Vogue1261, tracing fresh copies of the back and front. From there, tracing the neckline, shaped front seam and shaped hemline from Marcy's V8671 onto them was easy. These photos don't show it well, but the front seam and hemline are slightly curved. These curves are flattering, and give the top more interest and flow. FYI, I added several inches to the length, as I prefer a longer top.
All of the edges are left raw. To help stabilize them and prevent them from stretching out, Marcy has you cut strips of ponte and lay them under the hems and neckline. Then you topstitch, slightly stretching the strips, and trim the excess away. I think I stretched the strips a bit too much, as the hems appear a bit puckered. However, I think it's a neat technique, and I'm sure I'll use it again.
For the topstitching, I chose a variegated topstitching thread from Sulky. It was thick enough that I couldn't use a double needle; the thread kept breaking. So, I switched to a topstitching needle, and topstitched each edge twice.
The pink tones in the thread match the fabric perfectly, while the navy and gray add an extra dimension. The top has small side slits. I chose to lengthen them a bit.
(Please pardon the wrinkles. The top had been living in a bag for a couple of days before I took this shot, and I didn't have time to press it.)
I tried to insert bust darts from both the side seams and the armscyes, but I couldn't get them to look good. I think the weight of the fabric prevented them from lying nicely. I don't like the horizontal wrinkles under my arms, but they don't look as bad as the darts did!
This fabric has a nice feel on the skin, but I think it was just a tad too heavy for this top. It would have made a nice unconstructed cardigan or jacket. The drape of the knit would have been perfect for that. Marcy's pattern calls for a lightweight double knit, but I don't think this fabric is quite light enough. I am happy with the top, though, as it's very comfortable to wear.
What would I have made this spring without all of these Tilton patters and fabrics?! I've been having lots of fun sewing their styles. I have two more Tilton inspired garments almost ready to show you, then I think I'll try a Lynn Mizono. But you can be sure I'll be back to Tilton. I just love what those wonder women create!