Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Pattern Notebook: Silhouette Patterns #115 Ann's Top

After making jeans and a button up shirt, I really really wanted a quick project, but I got sucked in to making two garments as presents for others.  I'm not sure what to do about reviews for those patterns so I'll just skip right over them, and write up a review for the next thing I made for myself:

Pattern Notebook
I made two versions of this top, but I didn't take a single picture of the construction.  That may be part of the reason that I got from cutting out to finished in about 2 hours on the second one, and I am pretty slow.  There wasn't really anything tricky thing about the pattern, so there wasn't all that much to take pictures of.

Silhouette Patterns #115 Ann's Top

View / Size used: Size 2 D-Cup, There's only one view.

I used the usual method of determining my knit size - I wrapped the fabric around my bust and used the finished garment measurements on the pattern.

Fabric Used: I've made the first version in a turquoise rayon/lycra mix from some super cheap store in downtown L.A., then in a super stretchy navy cotton jersey from F&S Fabric.  It's really hard to photograph, but it's got really small flecks of sparkle in it too.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: 
I made two versions, I made the first one exactly as drafted, but it was shorter than I'd like, only getting as far as my high hip.  I also thought the cowl was a little stingy.  In fairness, that's what it looks like in the picture on the pattern, but made it up as drafted first anyway.

For the second version, I laid down the front and back pattern pieces on the fold as far from each other as I could get them, then I eyeballed cutting the side seam between them giving me one long piece.  I flipped the front on to the back, matching the shoulders, and just cut where the fabric was folded over, dividing the extra length equally between the front and the back.  Does that make any sense? I guess I should have taken pictures!

I also doubled the width (height?) of the cowl on the second version.

Were the instructions easy to follow?
Super super easy.  There's only 4 pattern pieces so it's not rocket sciences, but I liked that the instructions included info on serging.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
Can every pattern please have cup sizing?? Pretty please?? The Big 4 patterns that do have cup sizing have a whole measuring procedure to figure out which cup size you should use, using their system I come out as a C cup.  Silhouette keeps it much more simple, you use the cup size of your bra, and if you're over a D, use a D.  I'm a DD, so I used the D Cup pattern.  It worked out great.

It turns out that I really like french darts!  They're not noticeable at all in the final garment, but give really nice subtle shaping.  In fact they're so invisible I had a hard time getting them to show up in the pictures.

I didn't like how small the cowl is in the straight version, I love the second version.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the finished garment?
The first version was too short by several inches, and I'm not totally sold on the fabric.  It's a little shiny, and isn't all that breathable.  The cotton version is awesome and I've already worn it lots.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
I will most certainly make it again, but maybe not for a little while.  I would highly recommend the pattern!

Construction notes: 
There's not all that much to say about the construction.  The most complicated thing I faced was that my second fabric was horribly off-grain.  It was obviously knitted in a tube, and cut apart really badly.  If I matched up the cut edges, the ribs in the knit were almost diagonal. I was pretty annoyed, since it's the most I've paid for fabric in a while.  I was planning on making V8831 with this fabric, but since it was so wonky, I decided that the fewer pattern pieces the better.  I took the totally unprecedented step of thread tracing one of the ribs of the knit to get this thing cut out properly.  Now that it's made, I really like the fabric.  It's a little thicker than t-shirt fabric, but with lots of stretch, and the cowl feels really cosy.

Even though the navy fabric was a little stretchier than the turquioise fabric, I used the same size on both.  I thought that there should have been plenty of negative ease in the bust area already, and I didn't want it too tight on the waist.  I ended up taking in the navy version in the sides a little, because the fabrics hangs pretty differently from each other.

Machines / settings used: 
Featherweight for construction at 8 stitches per inch.

Brother 1034D serger to finish seams.
Differential Feed: 1.3
Stitch Length: 4
Stitch Width: 5
Tensions:  Left Needle: 4.5, Right Needle: 4, Upper Looper: 5.2, Lower Looper: 5.1

Review on Pattern Review is here


HeathersSphere said...

Terrific looking tops: cowl neck tops with an "edge". You look wonderful in them.:-)

Megan meggipeg said...

I love the changes you made to the second version. It looks way better and is really stylish and flattering. Thanks for the tips :)

Hana - Marmota said...

Yes, I agree, the second version is so much better! And I love the French darts. Good point about them giving subtle shaping; maybe I should try them next time I work with a knit...

Ms. McCall said...

Thank you so much! I wonder if it could be converted in to a dress like yours!

Ms. McCall said...

Thanks Megan - I forgot to add that I took a little in at the side seams in the second version, but only to account for stretchier fabric.

Ms. McCall said...

It's surprisingly nice, isn't it? 've never actually done it, but rotating darts seems to be pretty straighforward to rotate a dart from a regular side one, to a french or even waist dart. Worth a try anyway! Děkuji Vám za přečtení! (sorry if google translate mangled the translation) :)

The Slapdash Sewist said...

Those darts really do create a nice shape. I'm going to have to look for some French darts. I love how you customized the second version so it's exactly what you want!