13 July, 2011

I Sewed A Shirt That Fits

Thanks to having bronchitis and making bosses want to kill me for staying home, I sewed a t-shirt.

I subscribed to Ottobre  a year ago and was very pleased with the pattern designs. I first subscribed to the kids' patterns and I loved that Ottobre was designing patterns with ready-to-wear in mind as well as the fact that kids play and they wear knits. There is a lot of RTW detailing on the patterns as well as the basics.
I had heard via blogland, primarily Stitches and Seams and Sew-4-Fun, that Ottobre's fit was right on as well.
When I used to sew more garments, I was forever fussing and trimming Simplicity and McCalls (& Buttericks) patterns. They would add 8 inches to the length that I would cut off before I even cut out the pattern. I gave up with the kids because the big 3's patterns were so huge - if you followed the size guidelines on the back of the envelope. I would buy RTW and make a pattern from those pieces.

I  also got blog encouragement from a few sewers out there who were not afraid to take photos of their finished garments on their plus-size bodies.
With Ottobre's t-shirt pattern (#303 Women's best tops), I followed the size guidelines and --IT FIT!!!

This is what the pattern layout look like. A little puzzle to get your juices flowing.

At Sewexpo this year, I bought some Swedish Tracing paper which worked like a charm. You can trace a pattern piece to this, pin them together and pin-fit it without cutting into your fabric. The swedish tracing paper is a light, durable fabric/paper that has a bit of drape to see where you might need to adjust.

This basic T had three main pieces - back, front and short sleeve so it was easy to cut out.

Small print and a huge pattern layout meant I discovered how much seam allowances to add - later. Which worked out.
I planned on serging so I added 1/4" (6mm) to everywhere except the neckline.

If you squint - light yellow fabric with whitish pattern on top -
you can see me cutting 1/4" out from pattern.

The most difficult part of the shirt was the neckline binding. I have got to get one of those coverstitch binders for Christmas. I actually sewed this wrong but it all turned out anyway. I used my serger to attach the binding and then flipped it over and coverstitched it down.

Before pressing it, I thought it looked mighty fine. Like RTW.
Yeah, I know, I'm full of myself.

My bathroom mirror photos turned out the best and not too fat-looking.

There are maybe two things I would differently on this pattern:  maybe hem those sleeves a tad higher and bring that v-neck down an inch. I utilized this yellow micro-fiber performance knit because I bought some knits from Fabric.com in May and this yellow arrived looking a little on the pale side. So I figured, no problemo, if the t-shirt doesn't work out, c'est la vie. Instead, it surprised me with the great fit so now I need to think about embellishments up by the neckline. The yellow is a bit see-thru and it could use some help up there.

An Idea?

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