Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Having a cuppa...

Self-stitched September, Day 21
Today's mini photo challenge, to be eating/drinking.
I whipped up a new Tshirt yesterday.
Hehe, "whipped-up", a phrase that is music to the seamster's ears, no?  Don't you just love the very thought of it; whipping something up.  Especially since I am normally not much of a whipper-upper, but more of an agoniser-over-the-smallest-detail-er... well whipping something up is nice thing to do once in a while.
As whipping-up implies, my Tshirt is devoid of exciting or innovative dressmaking features.  It's just an ordinary white Tshirt and is not exciting at all.  But I decided to be kinda official about it this time... usually I lay down one of my existing Tshirts and trace around it but I've decided that I should do something about getting a proper pattern that is reproducable over and over.  In the 06/2011 Burdastyle magazine I noticed this Tshirt pattern 120 immediately and thought I would give it a whirl.  So traced out my size based on my measurements, cut it out, machine basted and tried it on (normal modus operandi for trying out a new pattern)  Was a bit surprised to find out I swam in it!  Look at the photograph; the model is hardly swimmming in her Tshirt now, is she?  In fact it looks like a remarkably well-fitting garment, so what is going on here?  Here below are my pattern pieces; the black lines are the stipulated stitching lines and the red lines are my adjusted stitching lines in order for me to get a garment that looks like the one in the picture.  Only the shoulder seams remain unaltered...  ridiculous, no?  
I also noticed that the pattern calls for an invisible zip closure in a centre back seam and for front and back neck facings. Personally I think that is overkill for a Tshirt.  Invisible zips?  Facings?  I think not.  Instead I opted to cut the back in one piece on a centre fold and cut bands to finish the sleeve and neck-hole edges.  This is a very nice finish I learnt it by studying some of my Metalicus tops to see how they finish some of their knit edges, so I think of it in my head as "the Metalicus finish".  I think it is a beautifully clean and easy finish.  It uses the self-fabric so blends in nicely with the garment and doesn't require you to find matching ribbing or to own an expensive coverstitch machine.  You just cut a band to fit (or a little bit smaller), sew it into a ring and fold in half along its length, then serge the raw edges together with the raw sleeve and neckline edges in one seam, like so.  I like this finish for a Tshirt.  For the lower hem I just overlocked the raw edge, pressed under by about 4cm and hand slipstitched into place.  This is a flatter and smoother finish than the Metalicus band method, so works well for the lower hem where I wanted less bulk.
I also altered the neckline of the pattern, cutting a deeper and wider curve, and lengthened the sleeves to elbow length.  Hehe, I guess it is not even the same top now, is it?  
So, since I haven't really used the pattern as intended I won't write a pattern review, but will save that for a time when I actually check out the pattern properly!

Tshirt; kinda my own design, using Burdastyle 06/2011, 120 as a starting point, white knit stuff
Dress; the gathered hole dress drafted from Pattern Magic by Tomoko Nakamichi, grey wool mix, details here
Leggings; my own design, beige knit stuff, details here, and my tutorial for making your own custom fit leggings pattern here
Hand warmers; knitted by me using Morris 4 ply wool in Imperial Blue, details and my pattern here
Boots; Andrea and Joen from Uggies in Dunsborough (now Eco boutique)


  1. I think a zipper would have been a bit over kill on a tshirt as well ;o). Love your dress. The color I of course love as Grey is my favorite color for clothing!

  2. I agree, a zipper would definitely be overkill! I like the little bit of blue poking out at the sleeves in your outfit today.

  3. Heh, a whipper-upper project is so gratifying from time to time, no? When goose was smaller that was ALL I did was quick gratifying projects, because there was no time for agonizing over details. It is nice to have some time to take my time (and not have the project take months!) now.

    I would love to draft / find a great fitting Tshirt pattern for myself as well - but definitely not with a zipper or facings. I don't want to have to do up a back zipper with the attendant contortions when I am wearing a simple tee-shirt. My goodness, what sort of creative genius came up with that? So now I know what pattern NOT to use. And that is a pretty massive adjustment to have to take. hmmmm hmmm. Nice result though. :) I really like the layering under this dress. And your beloved neutrals!

  4. Colour blocking seems to be the latest thing . I love your grey dress - such a basic but not basic at all. I would have no trouble having a photo taking involving eating food.

  5. I agree, tee shirts and zips do not go...I wonder if it was more for decoration or function as most of the tees I own have a lot of stretch in them. I usually do my necks the way you have yours as well but sometimes I like to mix it up a bit.

  6. Your neck band looks awesome. Totally professional. I'm a huge fan of my burda 2-2011 long sleeve tee pattern, but I just use a self binding for the neck edge and it's not very neat inside. I'll have to experiment a little more.

  7. You top looks perfect, the band and hem look very professional :)

  8. Very nice! Though I am a bit surprised you didn't slather vegemite on something. :)

    So, do you have lots of beautiful antiques sitting around outside? Just wondering. :D

  9. The tee shirt is really nice, but I so love that dress. Wish I had one!

  10. To me a t-sirt is a t-shirt, why bother with a zip! I really can't imagine why you would need one if the fit is that big anyway.

    I love that band finish too. It sits real nice, is easy to do and it's my preferred method on all knit fabrics.

    I love the way you layered your T with the long sleeve blue one too.

  11. I agree a tshirt with a zip is silly! The only thing I would add to your mini tutorial is to make the band smaller in circumference to the body it is being attached to (neck/sleeve) so that it stretches onto the body and will lie flat. To do that you PMIQ "pin me in quarters".( I learnt that years ago at Nassos in Morley) Mark the band and the body in quarters and stretch the band evenly to match( on a sleeve half way marks are likley enough). I'm sure you do that instinctively Carolyn!

  12. Lovely - funny enough, making my own white t-shirts is high on my list of sewing ambitions. It's not such a long list yet! I like your neckline method. It's neat and easy. Perfect. Now to carve out time for t-shirt making...