*I believe the technical term is "moiré".
My second and last make during Me Made May, made in direct response to seeing a gap in my (handmade) wardrobe. That feels really good.
|Boden Breton L/S Tee|
I have known for a while I wanted to try to replicate this. I could just buy another, but where's the fun in that? My difficulty was in finding the perfect pattern and the perfect fabric (in the perfect colours). I don't ask for much.
I finally found the Tessuti Brigitte tee and it seemed to tick all the boxes. Bateau neck, slim but not tight fitting, a few sleeve length options. Perfect.
|Tessuti Brigitte Tee|
The fabric is 100% organic cotton interlock, which I'd first spotted on the The Village Haberdashery, but when I eventually got round to buying it, she didn't have enough left. I googled the manufacturer (C.Pauli), and found a new to me website called Maude's Fabric Finds, which had the colourway and quantity I was after (and more besides. It took a lot of self control to not buy anything else. I will go back though). The colourway I bought is called Smoke Blue/White, and it's a beautiful grey blue colour. The fabric is lovely. It's thick and beautifully soft with reasonable recovery considering it has no elastane. Both websites said to factor in 5% shrinkage so I bought 1.25m, and I pre-washed it twice just to be sure, but I have plenty left. Enough to make Baby Boy some trousers or a tee.
I cut the size 10 as per my measurements, but I decided to scoop the front neck a little - about 1.5cm , as per my Boden tee. I'm glad I did, as it now sits at the base of my throat. Next time I'll scoop out about the same again as I'd prefer it ever so slightly lower.
I wanted the stripes to match as well as I could manage, so I spent a lot of time cutting out. I find drawing lines perpendicular to the grainline, onto the pattern piece really help. It was trickier than normal, as due to the stretch of the fabric, the stripes wiggled around a bit,, but I got there in the end. When sewing, I pinned every second stripe. It took a lot of pins, and it took ages, but I think it really helped. I also splashed out and bought a walking foot. At around £30 they are not cheap, but it's already earned its place in my sewing box. It's fantastic and I want to sew everything using it! In the spirit of honesty, some stripes still went awry, particularly on the sleeves, but on the whole, I am very very pleased with my stripe matching, and it's certainly no worse than a lot of RTW. It is difficult to do, but the satisfaction achieved, and the professional look is definitely worth the extra thought and work put in.
|Stripe matching at the side|
|*Some* stripes match at the sleeve, especially lower down, which was where I concentrated on, TBH.|
It also hides the really unsightly overlocking on the back neck. My overlocker and I are not getting on much these days. I cannot get the tension right, and it always looks messy. I only managed to overlock the necklines on this before 2 of the threads broke. As the fabric doesn't fray, I just left the raw edges unfinished - I couldn't be bothered to battle with it any further - but I really do need to spend some quality time with it to rekindle our relationship.
The twin needle, on the other hand, was a dream on this fabric. No tunnelling whatsoever! The only problem was that I got so carried away with my bird tape on the back neck that I forgot to twin needle that part. So the front neck is twin needled and the back is standard straight stitch. The back neck is also a different colour thread, as I sewed that first, then decided the thread wasn't a good enough colour match to continue with, but neither was it so bad that it was worth unpicking. I'm calling it a design detail.
|Awful pic of the back|
During construction, I did have an issue with the notches not matching up. I don't know if this is something I did, or if it's a problem with the pattern. For a stripe this narrow it didn't matter, I just ignored the notches and matched the stripes, but for a larger or less regular stripe it would have been a problem. Something to think about for next time, as I do fancy a larger stripe version.
Fit wise I'm really happy with this. It's spot on in the body, and neck. The only thing I noticed (and really I only noticed it half way through the first day of wearing it, but then of course I couldn't stop seeing it) is that the shoulder seams are sitting really weirdly. They are fine from the underarm up to nearly the top of the shoulder, but then they suddenly veer off towards my neck, as if the very top of my shoulders are too wide. I don't have particularly broad shoulders and have never had to adjust a pattern here, so again, not sure if this is something I have done during construction, or just the way the pattern is drafted. The flat pattern piece looks fairly standard, so if I extend it, it's going to look really odd,, and I'm not sure how to approach as I don't want to add any width anywhere other than the very top of the shoulder. Any ideas?. It's not going to stop me wearing this version, but it definitely needs addressed for future versions.
|Here is a a lovely photo of clouds reflected in our kitchen window, and our burglar alarm. Oh, and the wonky seam at the shoulder! See how it just wanders off to the right about half way up the armscye?|
And P's comment? "You made that? That's the best thing you've ever made!"
I'll leave you with some timer outtakes, that somehow make me look like I'm dancing, because I have to find something good in these photos, and these make me laugh.