Friday, May 1, 2009

Dartless Top

On Wednesday, I started making a dartless top. I didn't get very far, though, before it was time to stop and fix dinner.

I did get it cut out, though, and sewed the shoulders and sideseams before stopping for the night. I STILL don't have great lighting in my sewing room! But I do have a great cutting table, so I will be patient.

I added a generous Center Front extension to this draft...I can (and did) cut off any that is not needed to create a level hem.

The fabric I’m using is a weird fabric with lots of texture, very old, from my stash…probably cotton. It doesn't have as much stretch as it needs to have for this pattern…10” stretched to 14”. It is a bit tight in the bust, which accentuates that 'looseness' that occurs in the back waist area! So far, it is not a wadder, but I don’t think it will be great.

The ‘looseness’ at the small of the back is my main concern, though. I don’t want yet another top that hangs up on the high hips! There is excess ease at the hips, yet the fit is very close fit at the bust, shoulder blade and armhole level in back.

At fitting, I considered NOT putting the sleeves in, and instead, making it sleeveless. I wondered if this fabric would be too heavy to wear comfortably in the summer time if it had sleeves, even if only short ones?

On Thursday, I finished the top!

I decided to go ahead and put the sleeves in after all.

But I did make one critical adjustment to
improve the situation at the back. I ripped apart the sideseams and moved the front ss upward and the back ss downward, then resewed them...with a .5" mismatch. This meant I had to trim off 0.5" at the top of the front sideseam (lower F-ah...just slanted to blend) and remove .5" at the bottom of the back sideseam (I manually raised the hem at both sides anyway, to create a curved hemline…shorter at sides than at center front/back, so it was no big deal). By sliding the back ss downward a bit, I caused the back to swing out some, like the prominent seat alteration on page 35 of Natalie Bray's Dress Fitting. This helped get some of the folds of loose fabric OFF my bum! I will do this in the future on all dartless tops. Actually, I will alter the patterns before cutting!

I used my coverstitch machine to hem the sleeves, hem and neckline. I haven't used that machine in over a year, I bet! But after an initial bit of trouble it worked just fine. At first, the bulky fabric was getting stuck under the foot, especially at the seams...but then I remembered that I could lessen the pressure on the presser foot! duh. None of my other machines have that adjustment (although one I had years ago did). After loosening the pressure, it fed through just fine! I hope to be able to do some pics soon, but judging by the awful shots of me in the mirror, I probably should wait for a photographer!

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