Arlington Sweater by Love Notions

For pattern reviews it is very helpful to have a person’s measurements! So before we begin, I am 5 foot 9 with a 32 inch bust, 29 inch waist, and 36 inch hips. I am pretty evenly proportioned but do find that my arms are longer than average! Happy to answer any fitting questions in reference to this pattern and my body should you have them- just leave me a comment!

Due to unforeseen circumstances, my deep dive into turtle neck patterns has been very delayed, but today starts a week of turtlenecks and I’m excited to compare a few different patterns for you! I was worried that by the time I finally got these up we would all be over wearing turtlenecks, but as it is -6 degrees outside today, I think some of us will still have a need for them for a little while longer.

I decided to deep dive turtlenecks because I’ve really found that they are a great layering piece for Colorado. On warmer days they are good on their own and when it’s colder like today I use them as a base layer purely to stay warm. When I realized the ones I owned were at least 15 years old (I didn’t wear them much in Dallas!), I decided to try some different patterns and see what made my perfect turtleneck. Much like my quest for the perfect tshirt, I was pleasantly surprised about what I learned and hope that comparing 4 different patterns will help you decide which pattern would be best for your style. Friday I will have a post with all the patterns side by side, but first let’s start with a deep dive shall we?

I already have a review up for the Nikko top and dress that you can find here. This has been my tried and true for awhile and I highly recommend. Today I am going to be reviewing the Arlington Sweater by Love Notions.

I have made this pattern fairly recently with some Destashify fabric, you can find that post here, but I really wanted to try the more plain sleeves and compare it to some other patterns just to look at the style lines and fit a bit more.

Love Notions is a company I reviewed in 2020 and have since fallen in love with. I appreciate how versatile their patterns are as well as their size range and cup size options. I always have good luck sewing their patterns and the Classic Tee was pretty much my favorite t-shirt from T-shirt Month.

Love Notions has a very active Facebook group that’s free to join where you can find a lot of inspiration as well as tips and advice on all their patterns. I’m not on Facebook very much and I get a lot out of the group. Just seeing what people are making, how patterns look on different bodies and in different fabrics is really helpful and inspiring. I also think it helps you get the most out of your patterns, they are not sold to be one off pieces. Love Notions creates patterns to make and wear again and again.

The website describes the Arlington as “a great transitional piece for your fall and winter wardrobe. Choose from three body styles: hip length, banded shirt length and above knee dress. Neckline options are turtleneck, mock turtleneck and cowl. Mix it up with five different sleeve options: long, bishop, elbow, puff short and puff long.”

The Arlington is meant for knit fabrics and there are 3 length options, including a dress, 3 different necklines, and 5 different sleeve options. If you like this pattern you could basically never have to buy another turtleneck pattern again!

The sizing in Love Notions patterns goes from XS-5X with a full bust option. That is a 33″ full bust to a 57.5″ full bust. You can see their full sizing chart here.

This is described as being a pattern for a ‘confident beginner’ and I agree with that completely. Love Notions’ instructions are very thorough and when you add in the Facebook group for help, I think any issues you had could be easily resolved. The hardest part may be adding on the neckline and, if you use the bishop sleeves, gathering them into the cuff. But this would be a great pattern to try if those were new skills for you.

The fabric recommended for the Arlington is light to medium weight knits with 40% stretch. There are also plenty of tips on what fabric to use depending on what neckline you go with, a drapier fabric for the cowl for example.

What I initially liked most about the Arlington were the bishop sleeve options and the dress options. I like that it is a basic pattern with so many variations! There are quite a few versions on the website as well as on Pattern Review. Browsing through you can see how many different looks you can get just depending on what fabric you use and what version you make. I love the versatility!

For all my turtle necks this week I’ve used the Premium Merino Jersey from The Fabric Store. Today’s version is in the navy. I bought this fabric in there New Years Sale and it is gorgeous, absolutely gorgeous, both to work with and to wear. It is soft and has a great drape but also warm and holds up well for the hems and neckbands. I will be making this a staple fabric to stock up on in future sales to come!

This was my first time ordering from The Fabric Store and I will be using them again. I was always intimidated by their prices as well as the fact they’re shipping from New Zealand. I think they’re sales are great and I got free shipping pretty easily. I think this will be a store I watch for sales and buy from every so often, but the quality is really great. It did take forever to get here but I actually think it was the trip from Denver up to my house that took the most time and not getting to the States!

For this version of the Arlington I wanted a more classic turtleneck so I did the straight long sleeves and the mock neck version. I did end up having to add the band, simply because I did not have quite enough fabric to get the shirt version out of my yardage. I bought one meter, and while that was just enough for all my other patterns, for whatever reason this one needed just a bit more.

I made a straight size medium with no adjustments and I think the fit is great. It feels like I’m wearing a comfortable t-shirt. I do like where the band hits me, I think it will be cute with high waisted bottoms, it’s just not my preferred style.

There are so many versions of this pattern online, but the review that made me go ahead and buy this was from the Youtube channel Sew Natural Dane. I love her version and it got me thinking how many options this one pattern had!

I couldn’t find any negatives on any reviews from this pattern. I think it’s pretty straight forward and if you like Love Notions patterns you’ll like this one!

Stay tuned for tomorrow’s turtleneck, we’ll be looking at the Freya from Tilly and the Buttons.

Cozy Capsule/// Simplicity 9337 Tie Dye Sweatsuit

I have another cozy set to share with you and it’s one I’ve been wanting to make for a long time, a tie dye sweatsuit. Back during peak quarantine it felt like tie dye was everywhere. We were all wearing it, making it, lounging in it. I wanted a sweatsuit but thought- no that’s kind of silly. I probably wouldn’t wear it that much (ahaha hahahahaha remember how naive we all were?!) so I made Harper one out of french terry and literally every time she had it on I wished for one.

So I finally made my dreams happen when I saw this lovely french terry from Style Maker Fabrics. I’m sorry this specific fabric isn’t available anymore, but there are some good options for other tie dye looks.

I wanted to try Simplicity 9337 as the pattern because it’s a great base sweatsuit and I liked that it was unisex. I could see basically everyone in my family wearing all of these pieces and I was excited to try the joggers as I don’t really have a jogger pattern I love.

This pattern comes in a size XS-XL and that means a finished bust/chest measurement of 30-54 inches and a 36-52″ finished hip measurement. I made a straight size small and really like the fit. I may shorten the top just a little next time, but the joggers are pretty perfect right out of the package.

I didn’t change anything except to omit the drawstring. I just don’t like drawstrings that much and kept it clean with a 2″ elastic instead.

These are so comfortable and I think they’re really cute too. I will absolutely be making this pattern again and can’t wait to try them for my kids too. I will have to adjust some of the sizing, but I think pretty soon they will be able to wear patterns like this!

Highly recommend this one if you need some good basics in your life. I think everyone needs a cozy tie dye sweatsuit in their life!

T-Shirt Month///Final Wrap Up!!!

Today I’m here to wrap up what turned out to be a fantasist tshirt month! Click here to see all my posts and patterns that I used as well as different fabrics I tried.

I learned quite a bit this month about what style of tshirt I want to make and wear and it ended up being very different from what I thought I wanted. Turns out, I love a looser fit, a scooped neck, and a very soft fabric. Maybe some day I’ll prefer something else, but for right now, this is what feels good and is what I reach for over and over again.

I fell in love with Love Notions patterns and learned I really like a cotton jersey mixed with rayon or modal. I want to share a list of patterns that people mentioned, some of them over and over again, as well as a couple other helpful links. Bookmark this post for when you’re in the mood to sew some t-shirts!

Claire Shaeffers’ Fabric Sewing Guide was a book that was recommended and I thought I would share as the book I referred to is no longer in print. It’s extremely helpful to have reference books that can help you pin point specific fabrics that you can then go looking for online. Also having expert information on how to sew and care for the fabric is something that you can’t always assume you will find quickly through google.

I got a lot of unsolicited advice (!) and thought I would share a neckband tutorial with y’all. This one from Melly Sews is good and pretty comprehensive. Some of the shirts I ended up not liking I slapped on neckbands to finish and show you and tried to be clear about that. I and my sewing are never perfect and I realize I have a lot of experienced sewists that have a lot of great advice. I would just say, maybe unless someone says ‘hey I would like advice on this!’ know that it is not always needed? Food for thought? I am going to be more clear on what I am just sharing and what I want advice on in the future.

Ok and here is a grand list of tshirt patterns that followers have used and loved with links to all of them. Have fun sewing yourself the perfect t-shirts! Thanks for following along this month!

The Plantain T-shirt from Deer and Doe

Keep it Simple Babe from Pattern Emporium

KLP t-shirt from Studio Jepson

Quite a few patterns from Sinclair Patterns, I’ve linked to all their knit tops

Toronto Tee from Rebecca Page (FREE!)

Kirsten Tee by Maria Denmark (Free!)

Galaxy T- Shirt by Pattern Scissors Cloth

Linden Sweatshirt by Grainline Studio

Frankie Tee by Tilly and the Buttons

Uvita Top from Itch to Stitch (FREE!)

Union Street Tee from Hey June Handmade

Sew Over It’s Molly Top and Edie top

Wardrobe by Me Tshirt Patterns

Concord Tee by Cashmerette Patterns

T-Shirt Month///Glenelly and Breckenridge

Today I have the final two makes of tshirt month and this weekend I’ll be posting all my final thoughts as well as all the great recommendations I’ve received this month! To see all the posts, click here.

Today I’m looking at two shirts with different styles of neckline (as opposed to the more classic options we’ve seen in the other shirts this month!) and both of them have options to be made into dresses. I had great success with one, not so much with the other. But I have learned a lot in the process so let’s dive in!

Pattern One is the Glenelly Top and Dress by Itch to Stitch Patterns

Pattern name and designer: The Glenelly Top and Dress by Itch to Stitch Patterns.

Size Range: 00-20, 31″ -46 1/4″ full bust

Pattern Details and Options: From the website, “The Glenelly features a modern square neckline, raglan short sleeves, and a figure-flattering fit. Designed for knit fabric, both the top and dress options could be dressed up or down. The dress option has gathers in the center front and center back waist, and a slightly-raised front waistline. The Glenelly also comes in a full-bust option.”

I made the top version in a size 4

Fabric used: I used a ponte from my stash. It was entirely the wrong fabric and I don’t want to go into detail about it because this is not a tshirt fabric! It was in my stash and stable and I used it without thinking!!

Thoughts on fit: This is a raglan style sleeve which, I have learned this month!!, is a style that I really, really don’t like on myself. I feel like it widens by shoulders and flattens my chest, two things I would really like the opposite to happen! That being said, the fit is more close fitting with a really lovely neckline.

Thoughts on style: This is great when you’re wanting more than a basic tee.

What I don’t like: Everything about this pattern is great except the style is just not for me. I consider this valuable information though, I now know to stay away from raglans. I’m just never happy with how they look! I also think only two variations, one just being a dress (which is easy to do to any tshirt pattern really) maybe isn’t a great value.

What I do like: The inclusive size range, the excellent instructions and drafting on the neckline, the fact that this is a great base pattern that you could easily build into something else!

Pattern Two: The Breckenridge Henley by Love Notions

Pattern name and designer: The Breckenridge Henley by Love Notions

Size Range: XS-5X, 33″-57.5″ full bust

Pattern Details and Options: From the website, “The Breckenridge Henley is an easy to wear top, tunic or dress. Meant for knit fabrics, this style will take you through all seasons. The neckline is an unconventional henley style that is easy to sew. No buttonholes required! Three body lengths are included: shirt, tunic and dress. Sew up this versatile style with short sleeves, roll tabbed long sleeve, or cuffed long sleeve.”

I made the long sleeve cuff version in a size medium

Fabric used: I used this white sand sedona mini stripe jersey and it is the comfiest, softest fabric ever. I have enough left over that I’m going to make some kind of bottoms with it and have a luxurious lounge/pajama outfit.

Thoughts on fit: I am fully aboard the Love Notions fan train. Their patterns fit me well (I think the attention to bust and sizing and full bust options makes a ton of difference) and their instructions and thoughtful designs mean you will have success with whatever it is you’re making.

Thoughts on style: A classic Henley with options for a dress or tunic and I love the sleeve variations. Can be very casual, think pjs, or made in a different fabric can be a great every day t shirt.

What I don’t like:  I don’t think there’s anything negative for me to say about this one!

What I do like: Something really interesting and handy is that the button placket is just for show, so no button holes. That makes this a really quick make but the details elevate the shirt to look like more than a simple tee.

For the fabric today I’m just going to talk about the Jersey from Surge Fabrics. “This mini stripe jersey is a classic choice for t-shirts.  It is soft and light-weight without being sheer.” It is composed of 64%rayon, 14% cotton, 18%poly, 4%spandex and has a 50% horizontal stretch and 25% vertical.

This fabric reminds me of ready to wear lounge wear and I will be keeping this fabric content in mind when looking for cozy t-shirts to make and wear. It is light weight and I wished I had used a tad heavier interfacing for the neck band, just to get a cleaner topstitching. Otherwise it was not too difficult to work with and I literally want to drape myself in it and curl up for a nap. That comfortable. It does feel more casual- a mix of the print and light weight-ness I think!

Thanks for following along as I tried out all these t-shirts! I learned a lot about what I like to wear and make and now have a closet full of great t-shirts to wear for the rest of the fall. Speaking of fall… Next weekend I’m going to start talking about fall sewing and plans and all things capsule. Be sure you’re following me to stay in the loop!!!

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.

Recent Make/// M8174

Today I have my last summer make to share with you and it is in the running for my favorite make of 2021. The day of our 15th wedding anniversary Chris kissed me good bye and told me to be ready at 6pm because a baby sitter was coming and we had dinner reservations. I mean, is there any better gift?!

So I did what any normal girl would do and I made myself a damn dress.

I had M8174 sitting on my ‘to make one day’ shelf along with fabric and went to work. I made this dress in one day, start to finish from prepping my fabric to hemming the final piece! This is a simple make, especially when you make the strappy version, and I liked some of the details they included with the instructions.

I made the size 14 and ended up needing to take in the bodice quite a bit and should probably take it in more. Next time I would size down to a 10 in the bodice and keep the 14 for the skirt, this should be fairly easy to do as they are all separate pieces! It would mean a little grading at the top of the skirt or bottom of the bodice just to get everything attached smoothly.

I love that the bodice is fully lined and I liked the instructions for adding elastic to the waistband. This really helps the dress keep its shape and prevents the skirt from weighing down the top.

I also liked the assembly of the skirt. Basically it’s two front pieces that overlap and I love the ruching on the side. It could be a bit tricky assembling the skirt, keeping track of left and right can be confusing, but the instructions are crystal clear. Just take you time reading them!

I made this dress out of a gorgeous bamboo jersey from Blackbird Fabrics in the color ‘blood orange.’ This material is clingy- so keep that in mind with a dress like this. You’re going to be able to see any lumps or bumps from underwear and need to plan accordingly!

I am in love with how this dress turned out. I feel beautiful in it and it’s so comfortable. I paired it with gold heels for my date night but like it with more casual sandals too. I think the longer versions would be amazing for a beach trip and the knit makes it easy to pack!

T-Shirt Month/// The Lark Tee and The Classic Tee

I’m back with my first two t-shirts to dive into for t-shirt month. Check out my post from last week to see my plans and what I’m trying to accomplish here!

I’m going to be looking at the Lark Tee and the Classic Tee. I put these two together specifically to compare what would probably be called a ‘classic t-shirt.’ Later in the month the patterns I show won’t really be for side by side comparison, but these two are definitely close enough to examine and compare a bit. I’ll talk about the pattern, the versions I made, and then I will talk a bit more about fabric towards the end of this post. Please let me know if you have any questions about the patterns or fabric and I will try to answer them in a later post! Let’s get going!

Pattern One: The Lark Tee

Pattern name and designer: The Lark Tee from Grainline Studio

Size Range: 0-18, a 32″ bust to a 44″bust

Pattern Details and Options: From the Pattern Description, “With a modern, slim fit ideal for layering, the Lark Tee is your closet’s new best friend. It’s great on its own or under your favorite button up, sweater, or blazer. All four sleeves are interchangeable with each of the necklines resulting in 16 potential different tees in one pattern!”

There are options for a crew, scoop, V, and boat neckline and cap, short, 3/4, and long sleeves.

Fabric used: This pattern recommends using knit fabrics with at least 20% stretch. I made two versions, one in a luxury viscose and one in an Amsterdam jersey (details and links at the end of the post)

Thoughts on fit: This tee is closer fitting with a small size range.

Thoughts on style: Classic t-shirt styles that you can mix and match, basic but with options.

What I don’t like: I don’t like the more form fitting look of this shirt. For a t-shirt to wear every day with jeans I think I prefer a looser fit. I wish the size range were bigger and that there were cup sizes.

What I do like: I do think the snug fit would work well for layering. I also like all the options and that each neckline has a completely separate pattern piece.

Here is my first version in the luxury viscose. I went with the crew neck version in the size 6. I had to shorten it but only due to the fact that this was the amount of fabric I had. I chose to make a version of both tees out of this fabric after the fact so had to make it work! I shorted the sleeve length about half an inch because I thought the short sleeve hit me at a weird spot, especially with the tighter fit.

This is an incredibly simple make and the instructions are clear and easy to understand. I was able to get a nice finish using a zig zag stitch and my regular sewing machine. I did have a little pulling around the neck band.

For the second version I used the Amsterdam jersey and made the boat neck with long sleeves in a size 8. I prefer the fit on this one and appreciate the length of the top and the sleeves. I don’t know that I love the wide neck line and was a little bummed that the finishing was simply to turn under the neckline. I think a facing would have given a more professional finish.

Pattern Two: The Classic Tee

Pattern name and designer:The Classic Tee from Love Notions

Size Range: XS-5X, 33″ bust to 57.5″ bust

Pattern Details and Options: From the website, “The Classic Tee sewing pattern is a semi-relaxed tee with just the right amount of ease where you need it. Choose from three neckline options: crew, scoop and v-neck. Also included are four sleeve lengths: short, elbow, 3/4 and long. This tee is a great beginner project, especially for an introduction to sewing with knits. A full bust piece is also included.”

A basic tee with options in a big size range.

Fabric used: This pattern recommends light to medium weight knit, jersey, rayon/spandex, modal, cotton jersey, and recommends that for more stable knits to size up. I used a luxury viscose, rayon spandex, and cotton modal in my versions

Thoughts on fit: Really enjoy the looser fit of this t-shirt and after playing around with the necklines I found that the scoop neck hits me at the perfect spot.

Thoughts on style: Basic style that you can make over and over again.

What I don’t like: Would like a couple more neckline options (boat neck maybe?) but otherwise no complaints.

What I do like: The size range, the price, the ease of fit right out of the gate.

My first version is the crew neck in a size medium from that same luxury viscose as earlier. I immediately loved the fit on the body and sleeves. There was again some pulling at the neckline (possible user error, possible it was the fabric) and I didn’t love the crew neck on me. After trying other versions I ended up cutting this one into a scoop neck and I much prefer that.

Version two is the scoop neck, long sleeve in a size medium sewn out of rayon spandex jersey. This may be my idea of a perfect t-shirt. I love the fit, I love the neckline on me and where it hits, and this fabric is incredibly soft with a perfect amount of drape.

My last version is again a medium, this time scoop neck with short sleeves in a cotton modal. I think this is my perfect t-shirt! I love the fit and can see myself making up as many versions as I need throughout the seasons.

Thoughts on Fabric.

The Luxury Viscose is from Minerva and is about $24 a meter. It’s 94% viscose, 6% elastane with a 35% stretch. It has a lovely drape and is very soft. It can go a bit clingy and was the most slippery fabric I used. I love that they sell this in so many colors and for a drapey t-shirt I think it’s a good fit!

The Amsterdam Jersey was from Surge Fabric and was $7.99 for a half yard. This is a 86% poly, 10% Rayon, and 4% spandex with a 50% stretch one way. It was lightweight, soft but not as soft as the others, and is a rich saturated color. This was my least favorite fabric to work with. The polyester makes if feel less breathable and the texture of it makes me wonder how it will hold up in the wash. The weight is great for t-shirts though and reminds me of some RTW shirts.

The 2 Tone Choarcoal Rayon Spandex Jersey is from Surge and is $7.49 for a half yard. This is 96% Rayon, 4% Spandex with a 50% stretch. Soft, light weight, and with a beautiful drape, I loved working with this fabric and because it is breathable and cool to the touch, I have enjoyed wearing it as well. One of my favorites from the bunch.

And finally, the Cotton Modal Jersey from Stylemaker Fabrics is $18.99 yard. There wasn’t a percentage make up on the website, only that it is cotton, modal, and spandex. It comes in a wide range of saturated colors and is a bit thicker than the others but still has drape to it. Modal is touted as being more sustainable since it comes from Beech trees and used 10-20x less water than cotton. It is breathable and biodegradable and feels so good on the skin. I loved working with this one.

I have four more patterns and at least 3 more fabrics to make shirts out of so stay tuned for more next week! I will compile final thoughts and comparisons at the end of the month. I hope this was helpful for you, I know I am very excited to have found the t-shirt pattern I was looking for.

Whit Reviews/// Just Patterns

I’m here today with my monthly pattern review! Every month I send an indie sewing pattern company a list of questions my readers helped me come up with and if they agree to answer, I buy a pattern and sew it up to share the whole process with you! Check out past reviews here!

This month I’m looking at Just Patterns. This French company makes chic but wearable clothes and I first learned about them when their newest pattern, the Claudia tank, was released fairly recently. Delphine is the owner of the company and she was delightful to interact with! Here are her answers to our questions!

What is your design background? When and why did you start making your own patterns?

I started sewing when I was in my teens. I was obsessed with the idea of recreating the garments that I couldn’t afford. However, unfortunately, at the time, I didn’t have the skills or access to the resources that would have allowed me to make my dream wardrobe come true. I realized that the resources that would enable me to create the garments I was dreaming of, were not commonly available to home sewers. For the next 20 years, in parallel to studying and working at my day job, I read books, took pattern making and draping classes at fashion schools in New York and Paris, participated in the online sewing community and sewed a lot.

In 2013, I started a sewing blog (sewing tidbits) and I launched Just Patterns in 2017 during my maternity leave. It was initially launched with a friend working in the fashion industry but we split and I now continue on my own. The reason I sew and release patterns (to create my dream wardrobe) never changed, although the actual clothes have changed a lot since I was 14!

Who do you design for? Who is your Target Audience?

My sewing patterns are meant for dressmakers who are passionate about fashion, luxury ready-to-wear, and love detail-oriented sewing projects.

What level of sewer do you design for?

I design patterns for sewists who already know the basics of sewing. While it was not the case initially (and I’m still in the process of updating 2 older patterns), I now provide detailed and illustrated step-by-step instructions.

I do believe in empowering makers to up their skills and that each project is an opportunity to improve one’s skills. All patterns have a Resource Page, where I curate a list of tutorials and resources from the online sewing community. I also add specific tutorials and blog posts for inspiration and complex steps.

What is your price point and why?
My price point has evolved a lot since I launched in 2017. My initial idea was releasing patterns with minimal instructions at a cheaper price than most indie patterns (between 3$ and 7$ US). But, I quickly realized that not that many people had time or interest to sew with minimal instructions and that they didn’t mind higher prices if it meant detailed instructions. My new patterns (and the older ones I updated) are translated in French and in English, they have step-by-step instructions, an improved size range, pattern testers and editors are compensated. They are currently priced between 10$ and 14$ depending on the complexity.

I write an annual report of my sales and the expenditures since year 1, so the evolution in my thinking and strategy are well documented. You can read the  2020 report here.

What is your size range? Why did you pick this range? What is the size, cupsize, and height that you design your block on?

My current size range is French 34 to 56 (bust 31 1/2 to 52 3/4 – 80cm to 134cm). The range is broken up into 2: size range 34-46 drafted for B/C cup and size range 46-56 for a DD cup. Both are drafted for a height of 5’5/1m65.

I’m French and I initially did not pay enough attention to the size range so I established 34-46 as it was the “standard”. That was a mistake and I started improving the size range in 2019. All my new patterns (3 in 2020) are published in the new size range. An older one was already updated (the Stephanie Skirt), one is completing its second round of testing (the Linda Wrap Dress) and my objective is to update the last one also in 2021.

Ideally I would like to go up to a size 60 (bust 57 1/2/ 146cm). But my development/fit size is a 50 and I do not have access to a fit model in the higher sizes, so I’m afraid I wouldn’t be able to guarantee the quality of the drafting. I do grade up at the request of customers.

Do you support Black Lives Matter? What are some ways that you are anti racist and inclusive in your company on a day to day basis?

I do support Black Lives Matter. I published a diversity commitment in June 2020 and I updated it recently to include elements on racism towards Asian people and cultural appropriation. It’s visible on my website and social media. This commitment includes ongoing and future actions in issues like representation, marketing, cultural appropriation and transparency. I report on it annually as part of my income report.

Is there anything else you would like people just discovering your company to know?

I love sewing and can talk about it for hours. I actually just launched a sewing column where people can submit their questions and I have a lot of fun answering them! 

But I’m also managing Just Patterns alone, doing everything from drafting, grading, photography, to updating the website and doing the accounting. In addition, I still freelance in my day job field and I raise a 4 year old. Sometimes I get overwhelmed and might not be able to respond to customers on time. Sorry!

I appreciate Delphine’s thoughts and all the time she took in letting us get to know her. I purchased two patterns from her and sewed them up as part of my Spring Capsule!

First, I wanted to try the Claudia Tank. Now I knew going in that this pattern might not be for me, I wasn’t sure about this shoulder pad trend! I made the straight size 38 out of this cotton jersey knit and the fit is great. I appreciate the finishings and details that are in such a simple pattern but I quickly learned, shoulder pads are not my thing. I already have broad shoulders and this silhouette draws a lot of attention to them! I removed them and am wearing it as a tank, but I don’t know that I would make this pattern again. I am glad I tried something a little trendier though and appreciate that it was an affordable pattern that made the risk really low and worth taking!

The second pattern I made was the Tyra Tank and I was confident that no matter what, I liked this style of oversized t-shirt. I used the same cotton jersey but in a different color and again made a straight size 38. Both of these patterns suggest ribbing for the neck band but I just used self fabric and they turned out great. I did change up the neck of the Tyra because after sewing it I wished it was a little lower. Not a big deal and I would absolutely make this again. I’ve even seen people on Instagram talking about turning it into a dress and I think that would be an easy and fantastic hack!

I really enjoyed working with these patterns. There are detailed instructions for every step, the prices are incredibly reasonable considering all the extra resources provided, and I love clothes that are simple and beautiful with wonderful extra details added in!

Sewing My Spring Capsule/// M8085

Moving right along in making my Spring Capsule using the guide from Everyday Style! Today I have my first dress to show you and I have to say that initially I was not too sure about this one. However I wore it Sunday and I like it so much more! So maybe not my favorite thing every, but incredibly comfortable and easy to wear.

The Capsule Piece: The guide calls for an easy day dress and I immediately thought of a t-shirt dress. Something that looks put together but is comfortable and covered up enough that I can chase a toddler on the playground. I love easy dresses when the weather gets warmer and they really become staples in my wardrobe.

The Pattern and Fabric: This pattern is M8085 and I made version B. There are a few options with length and sleeves but it is a pretty basic pattern. The fabric is a Double Brushed Poly knit. I don’t wear a lot of prints but I thought this might be one that would get worn since it’s a color I love and the floral print is a little more abstract.

Details: This is version B in the size medium with the bodice lengthened one inch. I ended up taking in quite a bit in the bodice and really wish I had just made the small. This came together really quickly and honestly I think you could sew up something similar without a pattern at all. Find a tank or t-shirt you like and attach a few rectangles to it.

The pattern does call for stay tape in the shoulder seams and next time I would probably add something to the waist band too as that is a heavy seam and it pulls quite a bit.

I was a little underwhelmed with the details of this pattern. With such a simple make I was hoping for a bit more effort in the finishings, but the hems are just turned under and there’s nothing super special about it. I would never pay full price for this one, there’s just not a lot to it?

How I plan to wear it: This is going to be a throw on with white sneakers kind of dress! I could also layer it up with my denim jacket. This will never be a fashion forward type of garment, but it will absolutely get worn and I think it turned out pretty cute!

Make That Look///January

I love looking at ready to wear clothes, either in stores or on the runway or even in movies, and seeing if I can recreate those looks myself. It always sparks my sew jo and is a fun creative challenge! I’m hoping to have one of these up on a monthly basis, January’s just took a little longer than expected due to shipping delays and then a huge blonde moment from myself! Let’s see what I got up to, shall we?

The Inspiration:

When I was looking for inspiration I was looking for something comfortable. Something that I would actually wear right now but maybe with a twist, but I wasn’t on the hunt for super inspirational or designer wear. I found this layered long dickey sweater dress from Tibi on Shopbop and thought it fit what I was picturing in my mind. I thought it looked chic and cool in the pictures but also would be easy enough to throw on with cosy leggings and use it as lounge wear.

The Fabric and Patterns:

I found this cotton sweater knit on Minerva in the color old green and thought I could start with the Linden sweatshirt as a base. I liked the color of the original just fine but I saw this color and fell in love! I love the new Minerva site that let’s you see other people’s projects with specific fabric. I knew this was a little heavier than the inspiration, but also would be warmer and more wearable for where I live.

I pulled out the Nikko dress by True Bias to use as a guide for length and where I wanted the splits in the side to be. In theory, this simple pattern mashing would have worked perfectly and should have been a very easy sew. However. I made a really stupid error that kind of changed the project completely.

Making It:

My Linden pattern is one of the very first patterns I ever bought. Now when I cut out a pattern, I just cut right into my size. I guess new sewist Whitney did not do that and traced the size she needed. I didn’t think about this at all and just used the pattern pieces as they were. I have no idea why I didn’t notice the number 18 as I was cutting. I have no idea why I didn’t stop and think about why the Nikko pattern was so much smaller than the Linden. And I have no idea why when I sewed it up and it was a giant sack on my body why I didn’t think- huh this is the wrong size- instead of hacking away and trying to fix it.

Once I had realized my mistake, the dress was much shorter than I intended. I went ahead and fixed it, finished the top, and honestly am happy to have it. It’s just nothing like the original that I intended it to be.

The Result:

Here is my finished make! It’s basically a tunic sweatshirt, but I do love this fabric and it’s very wearable. I styled it up with skinny jeans and booties, with my Pietra pants and thrifted loafers, and with warm leggings and thick socks to give you an idea of how I plan to be wearing this!

I wanted to share this make as a reminder that we all make goofy errors sometimes and projects don’t always turn out like we hoped. That’s just how it goes whenever human brains and hands are involved! Like I said, I am happy with my make, I just wish I hadn’t spent so much time and problem solving on what turned out to be a very simple error.

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