Sunday, June 3, 2012

Portfolio Top

Without further ado, a finished project!
This is not my preferred method of taking pictures, but I can't wait any longer to get back to posting about sewing projects!  I hope you've stuck around through all the fiscal fasting and living room redecorating, because the sewing machine is in business again!
I just finished this top, which is Simplicity 2245, view C.  It's one of the Lisette patterns, and it's called the Portfolio top.  When the first set of Lisette patterns came out, I was really excited and bought them all.  Then, after looking at them some more, I realized they were mostly a little too unstructured and bohemian for me.  That sort of stuff appeals to me, but I'm never completely comfortable wearing it.  Tunics?  Love the look...on OTHER people.  But I still felt the pull of the cute styling on the pattern envelopes, so I decided to give the top a try.

The fabric I used is a cotton gauze.  This must be my first time sewing on gauze, because it's a pain, and I would have remembered!  It's wiggly and crinkly, frays easily, and demands to have everything finished to the Nth degree.  NOT the fabric to choose if you just want to fly through a sewing project!  But I already had it, I liked the color, and this was really meant to be a practice run, so I went ahead with it.

The pattern itself is not hard to put together, despite there being a lot of little extras such as the square yoke, the button loops, the cuffs, etc.  I would warn anyone who is tackling this top to choose their fabric carefully.  There is a LOT of piecing in the front, and any sort of directional design is going to make that really hard to navigate.  As it is, my fabric has a bit of a stripe from the weave, and I didn't always get it completely straight, which kind of bugs me.  Now imagine a pattern intersecting all around that square yoke piece.  Yikes!

Somewhere in my pre-sewing research, I read a review which cautioned against adding too much to the length.  Until then, I was planning to add a few inches, but I took their suggestion to heart and cut the pattern as is.  I figured I could eke a bit of length out of the hem if need be.  As it turned out, I sewed only a narrow hem rather than the 1 1/4 inch hem it called for, and I am happy with the length.  Too much more would mess up the proportions.
Overall, this came out better than I expected.  The pattern went together very smoothly (aside from a diversion when I followed directions for the wrong view), and I think it's a pretty flattering shape.  There are no sleeves to set in, if that's something that worries you, and I was happy to find that the gathering was minimal (I am not a fan of gathering!). 
Next up: Another Lisette pattern!  The Diplomat dress, Simplicity 1878.


Linda C said...

I'm glad you are sewing again. I enjoyed the decorating posts and you made me think with thrifty lifestyle- but I love to be inspired by what you sew.

That top is a beautiful color and it looks good on you and fits well. I like the shape. The hemline hits just at the right place.

That is one of my main complaints with ready-to wear tops - they hang down too far. I look better if they just hit at my hip bone but they pull down over my stomach/abdomen and make it more conspicuous than it is. That's the knits. Woven things aren't as bad, but they make me look so of out of proportion.
Do you have that problem?.

Happy sewing. Welcome back.

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