Thursday, August 30, 2012

Consumer Report

I'm lying here feeling pretty fucking wretched. Like, can't-drink-a cup-of-coffee-even-though-I-have-a-serious-addiction-to-caffeine wretched. Somehow I've managed to catch a cold and my stomach is a mess. Just in time for the long weekend! I've decided to take my mind off the misery by sharing some shopping-related info.

Not sure if you've heard, but Tasia is having a pattern sale in advance of an upcoming office relocation. It seems this hard-working talent is moving on up and it couldn't happen to a nicer designer. Till Sept. 6, you can save 20% on orders if you type in the promo code MOVING. I finally purchased the Cambie dress:

Photo from Sewaholic Patterns
And speaking of patterns, you know I've been easing myself back into the sewing world by making a muslin of the Salme Sewing Pattern peplum top:

Photo from the Etsy shop
I'm always on about how I don't sew on weeknights because I am generally too occupied by household things and tired from a long day at work. Well, I've made an exception for this project, which is probably a good thing given that the muslin has managed to take me since Sunday, so far, to put together. Partly this is because I've gone soft. Partly it's because I realized, fairly soon after cutting the pieces and basting them together, that the top is practically perfect for my shape without so much as an alteration. All I can say is "wow" and "thank you sewing goddess for making a non-stretch top experience something more than a crushing exercise in fit-challenges".

So, of course, I decided that it would be prudent to properly finish the muslin to make it wearable. The grey/taupe fabric I used, purchased ages ago, really has amazing drape and has worked better than I could have imagined. But the actual pattern calls for a lining, something I hadn't factored into the construction of the practice garment. Since when have I become the kind of person that decides: No mind, I'll just make myself some bias tape and bind the edges to make a cute, unlined top. Especially in light of the fact that I've barely glanced at the instructions (because they're not so relevant to a non-lined version, and they're pretty minimal in the scheme of things).

OK, it's a 3 piece pattern. There are only so many ways it can go together in the first place. But I find myself being very "confident, modern sewist". Three years ago I couldn't have imagined having the ability to do this. I'm so grateful to see that I'm developing as a crafter.

I will write in more detail about this pattern when I've finished the muslin, but let me say that:
  • The designer responded to advise me that the top is designed with 4" of ease in the bust and 2" in the waist.
  • I still cut the 12 - she suggested that I cut the 10 but it was too late by the time I'd heard back.
  • However, I was (as I tend to be - more on this later) fairly casual about the cutting. Of course, I made sure the grain was right and I use a rotary cutter. But I wasn't so fussed about getting an exact 12 because I thought it might be too big. Point is, between vaguely inaccurate cutting and serging all of the edges (which probably cut off another 1/8"), and messing with the sewing lines (despite my 5/8" seam allowance), I have made some sort-of unknowable hybrid size, like a small 12 or a large 10. S, my fitting friend, always cautions me against this tendency - because it's freakin' hard to duplicate! - but it's a way I express my inner sewing badass, I suppose. I've taken notes to the extent that I can, given that all fabric works uniquely with any given pattern.
  • When I've got a finished garment, I will speak about sizing in more detail. For now, though, let me say it's a great design and a very good choice for a woman of narrow-frame and full-bust. Still not sure about the adequacy of detail in the instructions - I'm going to have to use them first. There are few photos and the technical writing, on perusal, seems strung together in a way that may not be so intuitive. Stay tuned for more.
I was going to tell about some fun Etsy purchases in this post too, but I really have to lie down. Next time.


  1. Kristin,
    Sorry you are feeling poorly. I can't wait to see the Salme.

  2. Ooooh! Now I'm even more excited to see the final product! Glad to hear you've had a relatively good experience with the pattern so far. Hope you feel better soon!

    1. It could be way worse :-) I've been slack in working on it cuz I've felt so crap the past few days, but I hope to do so this weekend.

  3. Hurrah for fitting happiness! And feel better soon.

  4. Feel better soon- it sucks being unwell. Can't wait to see the top!

    1. Well, I know you are no stranger to feeling crappy. And I'm sure I'm a total whiner given that I've just got a couple of garden variety viruses. :-)

  5. I'm in love with this top too! It's been on my to-do list (and to purchase) list for quite some time. Glad to hear it fits well. :)