If I can, I always like to try out a new designer by making one of her free patterns. I was intrigued by the patterns at Sewing Cakes. The styles are fun, but I was more interested in how the patterns are drafted. She gives you some of the lines, but then the rest of the pattern is like a game of connect the dots, which makes it really easy to custom fit the pattern. The free pattern is for a tee shirt with a dolman cap sleeve, either a round neck or a Vee, and a banded hem. There’s a cute designer touch for a pair of micro-pockets. The pattern is supposed to extend to a 59″ full bust, but the dots in the pattern don’t go that far. I was fine because they did extend as far as I needed them. I will be buying more patterns from her, and I will report back whether this is ” a bug or a feature”.
When I’m making a muslin, I don’t usually take it to completion. I stop when I have all of the information I need for a fitting. But this was just a simple sew, and I did want to know things like where the pockets would land on my chest and how the neckband would lie so I finished it.
The sewing is super simple. There’s a pocket template piece to help you get a nice, clean edge to them. I added some tricot interfacing to the back of the pocket pieces using the pressing template as a cutting guide. One of my knits is sort of flimsy, and the interfacing gives it some body.
When I got to the neckline, I tried using the same flimsy knit for the neckband, but it didn’t work very well. The neckband of the tee shirt is narrow, and the roll on the fabric edges of the knit was extreme. Even after steaming it, it wouldn’t lie flat so I switched to the other color.
I like the fit of the shirt through the bust, waist, and hips. How could I not? It matches me every place. I don’t like the way the neckline is, though. I think the sewing term for it is “wonky”. I’m going to try taking off the neckband and sewing a shorter one to see if just pulling the neckline in a little will be enough. If it’s not, well, this is just a muslin, right? Then the next thing to do would be to size down through the neck and the shoulders, but use the same dots for my full bust, waist, and hips.
If you have a coverstitch machine and a serger, you don’t a sewing machine involved in making the shirt. Without the coverstitch, you would need to use a sewing machine on the pockets and to stitch down the waistband and neckband seam allowances. I was binge watching “Game of Thrones” so I did the whole thing on my mini-sewing machine.
The shirt has a lot of possibilities. You can mix and match fabrics or add some embroidery to the cute little pockets. If you like striped fabrics, it’s easy to match them. I chose the polka dots because they are a more subtle stripe if I hadn’t been able to get a good match, but it was a piece of cake.