Knit Dress

 

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A knit dress made of fabric with knitting trompe de l’oeil. I feel so meta.

 

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I started with the dress sloper in Alison Glass’ Knit Essentials booklet and tweaked it repeatedly using her clear, comforting instructions. Worth every cent of the $22 for the fitting walk-through, and for the raw-edge neckline treatment and wearable ruffles that I plan to try at some point.

The Plantain is definitely my go-to for scoop necks, but this will likely be my TNT for vees and drapey knit dresses.

What is your TNT tee shirt pattern? Did it require a lot of mods?

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Done! #OAL2017

 

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My #OAL2017 makes are finished!

The top is Mercedes Tarasovich-Clark’s Rondeur, courtesy of Knitty. I love a curved hem and the waist shaping promised, well, a waist.

Turns out the curved hem + the shaped waist was too much, so I frogged it up to high-hip level. This one might join Date Night in the Multiple Makes Hall of Fame (2011 was a good year for patterns).

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The skirt is a modified take Amy Butler’s Barcelona Skirt. I’ve sewn it before, but it always seemed too flared for my frame…because it was! After reading Dorothy Moore’s Pattern Drafting and Dressmaking, I realize that an a-line skirt is more than a real-life version of the triangle skirt on a stick figure. Different angles work for different hip measurements. Some math is involved.

I drafted an a-line skirt pattern using Moore’s techniques, laid it on top of the Barcelona, and modified the Barcelona to have a hem circumference that is proportionate to my hips.

I’d originally planned to use Kaffe Fassett’s shot cotton as a lighter alternative to denim; I wound up using Pepper Cory’s “peppered cotton” in Chambray because that’s what my local fabric store had. Frays like a mother, but amazingly soft and drapey right off the bolt. The lining is a solid aubergine lawn from Heather Ross’ Sleeping Porch collection.

When I asked the sales-teen whether they had any lawn in stock, I got a blank look. When I specified lawn fabric, she said “you mean like with grass on it?” #kidstoday #harrumph

 

Frankentank

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Unassuming white tank tops have been some of my most-worn garments, yet for some reason, the slowest to be replaced when the need arises.

Last spring and summer I’d curse as I commuted in the sweltering heat, wearing my cardigan to cover old salsa stains or hide dingy beige bra straps (that’s a topic for another post). No more.

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I can take this cardigan off without fear!

This year, I’m ready with a me-made layering piece that also works on its own. I used Style Arc’s Evie top in size 14 as a baseline. I tried it on after finishing the bands; my high hips and short waist fought with the high/low silhouette so I traced the shirttail hemline of a favorite tee.

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Shirttail hem. |  Pants: Eileen Fisher. Flats: Saks, second-hand. Necklace: gift. Cardigan (top photo): Pendleton, second-hand.

This kind of (minor) modification would have seemed impossible to me even a few months ago–I credit Alison Glass and Karen LePage’s Knit Essentials with demystifying the fitting process and helping me to accept that pattern modifications are inevitable. It’s really changed my thinking.

How much time do you typically spend tweaking a pattern? What are you sewing to get ready for spring or summer?