T-Shirt Month/// The Briar Tee and the Elliot Sweater

I’m back this week with two more t-shirt patterns and another fabric to discuss! For the month of September I’m trying out t-shirts, check out last week’s success here!

Today’s shirts both have the option of making a sweater or a t-shirt. I love the versatility of these patterns and that you can get different tops from one pattern. I would love to hear if you have any patterns like this- that can go sweater or t-shirt- in the comments!

Pattern One: The Briar Tee by Megan Nielsen

Pattern name and designer: Briar Sweater and T-shirt by Megan Nielsen Patterns

Size Range: 0-20, 32″- 46″ Bust, I used an older version of this pattern with a different sizing system and made the straight size small.

Pattern Details and Options: From the Pattern Description, “The stylish alternative to a basic t-shirt or sweater. Pattern features a high scooped front hem, low curved back hem, and includes two lengths, two neckline finishes, three sleeve lengths and two patch pockets”

Fabric: This pattern can be made in jersey, sweater, and stable knits with at least 20% stretch. More than 40% stretch will give a looser fit. I used the same cotton modal jersey I used last week (fabric thoughts at the end of this post!)

Thoughts on fit: A nice fit that is body skimming but not too tight. I think the high low hem adds to the drape and helps make the fit look good.

Thoughts on style: A pretty classic t-shirt with added details in the hem line and pockets. Appreciate the fit and love that you can make a sweater and a t-shirt out of the same pattern.

What I don’t like: While there are technically 4 views, I don’t know that this is as versatile as the patterns we looked at last week. The sizing is also more limited than other indie patterns that are out there.

What I like: I like the look of this shirt and the instructions are really good. Megan Nielsen patterns tend to fit me pretty well.

I have made this pattern before, many years ago, and think it may have been one of my first times sewing with knits! I like this shirt ok, this version I had something wonky happening with the neck band and I’m not quite sure what went wrong. If I hadn’t found such a great pattern last week, I would attempt to fix and make it right, but I have to say I don’t love it enough to make that happen.

Pattern Two: The Elliot Sweater and Tee from Helen’s Closet

Pattern name and designer: Elliot Sweater and Tee by Helen’s Closet

Size Range: 0/2-28/30, 31″-54″ Bust, I made the size 4/6

Pattern Details and Options: From the Pattern Description, “The Elliot Sweater is your go-to cozy layer for everyday wear. Dress it up with dark denim and boots, or keep it casual over leggings and sneakers. View A has a stylish high-low hem with a side slit that provides comfort around the hips. View B is slightly cropped, perfect for pairing with high-waisted pants and skirts. View C of Elliot makes a great, everyday t-shirt. All views feature a raglan sleeve and three neck options are provided: an extra tall version that can be scrunched down or folded over, a medium height version, and a classic knit band.”

Fabric: This pattern can be made in sweater knits with 20% stretch. Versions A and B need a more heavy weight knit while version C needs a lighter to medium weight jersey.

Thoughts on fit: A closer fitting t-shirt with a higher neck, this one was much more body skimming on me.

Thoughts on style: Raglan style sleeves make this a different look than the other shirts I’ve made. Hits at a great length, didn’t love the length of the sleeves.

What I don’t like: I don’t like this shirt but mainly because I realized I don’t like raglan sleeves on me! With the crew neck it makes me feel like my shoulders look really wide while making my bust look smaller.

What I Like: Helen’s Closet always has a great size range and her drafting and instructions are great. I love the wide turtleneck view as a tunic and may try that sometime this winter.

Ok, real talk, I didn’t finish this shirt and slapped on that neck band really sloppily because as I was sewing it up I realized I really don’t like this style. This is not a note on the design and pattern itself, some of y’all will love this!, but I put on the shirt for fit and immediately disliked the raglan sleeve with the higher neck line. Please ignore the pulling on the band as I don’t think that is an indication of the pattern, just an indication of my impatience to get it on to show you the shirt properly!

Part of trying so many shirts this month was to weed out styles that don’t suit me so while these two shirts feel a bit like fails, the outcome is still a win!

Thoughts on Fabric:

The Cotton Modal Jersey is the same that I shared last week and I love it more the more I work with it. It’s incredibly soft and is washing really well.

The Cotton Lycra Jersey was about $20 a meter from Minerva and is 95% cotton, 5% Lycra with a 30% stretch. This fabric comes in beautiful colors and is soft with some drape but is thicker than the previous fabrics I’ve been using. I think it works well for patterns that need a little more stability- something like the raglan sleeves or a more detailed neckline.

I hope even seeing my not so great makes is helpful to you in determining what t-shirt patterns you want to try! Let me know if you have any questions and I’ll see you next week with two more patterns that can also be dresses and have unique necklines.

My Fall Module/// Blackwood Cardigan

Today I have the topper of my fall module. You can see my two bottoms here and here if you want to catch up!

So this is one make that I’m a little unsure about. The pattern itself is lovely and I love this color and the fabric, but I’m not completely sure a cardigan is something I will wear a lot. It’s not the best choice for a topper with this specific module as it doesn’t fit over sweaters, but it was a case of having everything to make it and wanting to try it out.

All that being said, I do love how it turned out! And I’m going to try and find ways to wear it with other pieces from my closet. Maybe this weight will be a great layering piece and it turns out I am a cardigan person? We shall see!

I bought this pattern, the fabric, and all the other supplies from Needle sharp subscription box a few months ago. I’ve talked about Needle Sharp before, but it really is a great box to have everything you need for a project! If you’re looking for unique gift ideas for the sewists in your life, I recommend checking out her shop.

The pattern I chose with this box was the Blackwood Cardigan by Helen’s Closet Patterns in this yellow cotton knit. This is my second time making a Helen’s Closet Pattern and they are just the best. Her instructions are so clear and in depth and I appreciate that even with simple patterns there are lovely details and finishing touches. I would recommend any new sewists to check out her patterns as I think you would have great success with them!

So how’s that for a review? A garment that is lovely but I’m not sure I’ll wear? Very happy to have this pop of yellow in my closet and I will challenge myself to reach for it in the coming months.

Matchy Matchy

I am loving the concept of matching sets I’ve been seeing around (I mean, online. I haven’t seen anyone in person rocking these- ha) this summer. I think they are so cute together, whether matching tops and skirts or pants, and that you can have a lot of fun mixing them with other pieces in your wardrobe. It feels like a lot of bang for your buck!

ACS_1289

I bought this beautiful viscose linen crepe knowing it would become a set of some kind. I had a drapey short and a cropped top in my head and I think I found patterns that matched my vision!

The top is the Ashton top by Helen’s Closet. I saw this on so many people in so many fabrics throughout Me Made May and it made my list of patterns I wanted to try. I’m so happy I did because it is a pretty perfect pattern. Boxy with two different length options, this top is simple but a great building block for hacks or just to play around with different fabrics. The instructions are wonderful (lots of tips added in alongside the step by step construction) and I liked that there were two finishing options. There is an option for bias bound finishes (with pattern pieces) and also an all in one facing. I went for the facing because I thought it would help keep the drapey, breezy look of the fabric. I can’t wait to make a few more of these.

These shorts were a less enjoyable sewing experience, but I have to say I don’t hate them. These are the Dorian shorts from Seamwork and I love the lines and cut of them. I like how they are longer (I actually shortened them a bit) and that they fall away from your body. I think it ups the sophistication level of them and in this fabric they look more elegant while still being cool and easy to wear.

I bought them because I loved the pocket detail and I liked the elastic added in with the side panels. There is a zip fly as well which now I’m not sure that one pattern needs both. I can slip these on and off without undoing the fly and I’m not in love with how messy the waistband turned out. I redid the waistband three times and I think the skinnier elastic just doesn’t do it for me. I think I would prefer a wider waistband and possibly wider elastic too.

I will be trying the Closet Core Pietra pants soon and am interested to compare the construction and design of these two patterns. All together, I do love how this little set turned out! I’m learning to trust my instincts with sewing a bit more and I think these shorts have taught me that when I try a design feature and I don’t like it, maybe it’s ok to change it up. The pattern makers aren’t going to come for my head! I am learning that ‘breaking rules’ while sewing is ok. I know what I like and I can change things for myself. I am building the confidence and knowledge to make that happen!

ACS_1288

Pattern Details!

Top

Pattern: Ashton top from Helen’s Closet

Size/Adjustments: Straight size 8, B cup size. I may lengthen a bit next time so I can have the wide hem at this same length. I love the different cup sizing for fit.

Fabric used: Viscose Linen Crepe from Blackbird Fabrics It’s dreamy to work with and feels lovely up against the skin!

Additional Thoughts: I see what all the hype was about! Can’t wait to make it again and also play around with hacking it. Wonderful addition to my pattern collection.

Shorts

Pattern: Dorian shorts by Seamwork

Size/Adjustments: Straight size 8, if I made again I might size down to a 6

Fabric Used: viscose linen crepe from Blackbird

Additional Thoughts: Installing the elastic and making it look neat was a huge challenge and in the end I think I may just dislike this particular design feature. I like that there is a bonus pattern to turn them into pants and Seamwork always has great instructions as well as all the resources to help with the pattern.

 

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