Monday, 22 September 2014

Completed: Pleat Front Grainline Scout

Gosh, that was a bit of a break, wasn't it? I expected not to sew for a while, but somehow I thought I'd still manage to blog.

Lots to catch up on, but I will cut to the chase with this post and go straight to the sewing chat, and will save the life stuff for another time. I will say though that Baby Boy is now 4 months and finally into a routine, or something close, which has freed up a bit of Me Time! I finally got my bum into gear and turned that into Sewing Time! I had other plans, but having followed OWOP on Instagram, I found some new blogs to read, and came across the idea for this top. This is an old favourite with a small twist, which was the perfect reintroduction back into sewing - a familiar and straightforward make. It's the Grainline Scout Woven Tee, with an added pleat in the centre front. This idea was borrowed from Stitch and Cappuccino. I liked it because it added something different aesthetically but, more practically, it added more volume, which I hoped would allow for easy access for breastfeeding, whilst not being a shapeless sack. I think I achieved what I was looking for.

I had planned a "shoot" at the Kelpies, but one child was crying, the other needed the toilet and it was COLD, so this was all we got!
According to my current bust size, I am 2 sizes larger than I originally cut on my Scout pattern. I just wanted a bit of extra ease across the bust, not anywhere else, so rather than reprint the PDF, I adjusted my pattern piece very unscientifically. I measured the difference between 2 sizes, which was about 1cm, and then added that to the bust area (starting immediately beneath the armscye), tapering to nothing at the hem, on both the back and front bodice. For the pleat, I added 1.5cm to the centre of the front bodice piece along the fold edge. I also added 3cm at the lengthen/shorten line. This was really just to provide a bit more coverage when feeding.

The almost pattern matching at the pleat was complete fluke!

Hard to tell from these photos, but I am not convinced I have the fit right yet on the shoulders on this pattern. I think it's too big.
After sewing the pleat and then front and back together, I tried it on and decided the pleat was too narrow, and that I had plenty of ease to play with, so I added some width to the pleat. I also reduced the length of the stitched part of the pleat, which I had initially just eyeballed, so it released just beneath my bust. I think the pleat could stand to be even wider to make more of an impact, but I am happy with it as is.

So, for future reference, I ultimately added 2cm to the front bodice piece for the pleat,and I stitched down 16cm. This means I only added about 0.5cm to the width at the side on the front bodice piece. 

Some of you may recognise the fabric I used. It's the same as I used for this maternity dress. It's a viscose bought from Mandors in Glasgow. I had initially planned to refashion the dress , but there wasn't enough length in the skirt pieces. Fortunately I had a good metre left of this, plus scraps. So it was a stash busting project, and I still have scraps left, plus the dress. The viscose is perfect for this project. It's light and drapey, which allows it to hang nicely. It was a bit shifty and slippery to sew, but not too bad on a straightforward make like this. However, as you can see, it creases pretty badly. I had only been wearing it for a couple of hours when I took these photos. 

Construction-wise, I overlocked all seam allowances for speed. The tension seems to be off on my overlocker, so the stitching is a bit loose. I need to have a look at figuring that out at some point. I considered using a contrast binding at the neckline. This fabric is odd - I look at it and I think it's a dark red, but when I wear it, it seems to become skin coloured! A contrast would have broken that up a bit, at my face, but I only had a complementary, not a coordinating fabric to hand, and I thought that might look a bit random on just the neckline. If I could have figured out how to incorporate more of the binding elsewhere in the garment, I would have gone for it, but I couldn't, so I stuck with self bias tape. I chose to bind the neckline, so it's exposed, rather than use it as a facing. I am still on the fence about this. Using it as a facing might have looked cleaner. What do you think?

Bias bound neckline
I do love this tee. It does exactly what I need it to, and I think another will be on the cards. It's really comfy to wear, it provides quick and easy access for feeding, but also covers my tummy whilst I do so. Plus, I feel great about the fact that my first sew in over 4 months was a success, and I am itching to make something else! I am meeting some fellow bloggers in Mandors in Glasgow this weekend, so I think I will be looking for more viscose!

Finally, a shot of the top "in action". See? Can't see a thing!



  1. Your top looks great, I used to love a top that you could feed without flashing in :) A x

  2. Welcome back! What a useful top to have in your armoury. Good for you for finding time to sew. Seams like the little one approves of your make too!

  3. Looking forward to saying hey on Saturday! I really like it - pretty yet practical :)

  4. It's lovely! All your modifications are so well thought out and successfully executed. It must have felt so satisfying, firstly to actually be sewing again and secondly to end up with this! Wonderful to have you back posting again :) Enjoy your meet up! PS: I really like the self bias neckline; it's a beautiful finish :)

  5. Looks perfect for purpose intended (or indeed for later). Personally, I love your neckline binding as-is.

  6. It looks great & brilliant that you managed to adapt it for feeding! The binding looks fine as is though I do like the clean lines of the Grainline method of using it as facing. It's such a great pattern!


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