Here is my first vintage make... and I love it...now its completed !
Its the Simplicity 1278 1950s pattern that has been reprinted. I totally love the style- I went for view C with 3/4 length sleeves and I used my favourite Liberty Hebe tana lawn I got for Christmas.
I love the finished result a lot -see photos at the end ;) and I ll definitely make another- it as one of those makes that you don't really know whether it is going to fit until you are close to the end, which was a bit scary but it worked out just fine with a few fitting adjustments. I never make toiles, I always just wing it with my chosen fabric- live on the edge ;)
I had a few areas of the pattern I had a challenge with, 3 specifically which I ll share in case you are making it up. This may be me not reading the instructions properly or begin a bit of a novice! Don't let this put you off, its worth conquering as its a stunning pattern.
Firstly the neck- I didn't get the pleats right at all but couldn't really tell until I tried to put the neckband on - so ended up doing a lot of unpicking & re-stitching until I was happy with them - basically next time I'd largely ignore the fold lines on the pattern and do it more by eye so they look even (the one that goes under & over). I d also recommend tacking the the neck band on as thats the only way you can see if you are happy with them (unless you've got a bit more vision and skill than me!!). I also was convinced the pattern for the neck band was the wrong size- then after a lot of frustration I realised I was sewing it on upside down - you need to sew the long end to the top not the short end- now that is obvious now I think about it but the pattern doesn't specify and I m so used to doing facings where you sew the short end that it didn't occur to we for a really long time that I had it upside down!! Doh!!
Anyway, once I d got it right, I was pretty happy with it- here is the neck line ....
The next challenge was the hem. I had 2 issues here. On the front you sew the front 2 pieces together first, then do the interfacing then stitch them together to create the curve (see patter instructions below). I really struggles to get the bit right in the middle (near pink pin)correct- sewing the bits you need & avoiding the bits you shouldn't sew. Next time, I think I would sew the interfacing to the front parts before I sew the front together to avoid this. There may be other pit falls that I come across doing that but I m convinced it will make that meeting point easier to crack!!!!
Anyway, I persevered and was happy with the result:
The other issue I had with the hem was that the front is obviously done using the interfacing, but the back not and I didn't find the pattern was super clear on how to make that join particularly neat. I found there wasn't enough fabric at the back to do a great job of a neat edge so I used bias binding on it. Next time I would either continue the interfacing all the way around or I would cut the back piece 2cm longer to have enough spare fabric to do a neat hem.
And my final challenge was on the sleeve- and I m convinced this is a pattern error. There is a really nice detail where there are darts in the sleeves where your elbow bends which I ve never done before, but look cute. But the ends of each side of the sleeve are equal in length, then you add the dart in one side, and then there is a big discrepancy between the length of the sleeve on each side of the fabric. I then was left with the question on how to even them up (do you cut off at the top or bottom?). I found that taking it off at the top made more sense in terms of the dart being at my elbow- and it worked ok, but its a strange bit of the pattern. The other sleeve issue to watch out for is that I ended up with one dart facing forward and one facing back as I m so used to cutting sleeves out identically- so watch out for that. The pattern also doesn't specify whether the dart is supposed to be at the front or back - I worked out the back in the end. So be careful on cutting and doing the darts!! These I think are all pretty obvious pitfalls with hindsight! Here is the pattern directions, as you can imagine, when you do the darts, that side is much shorter than the other side!
So they were my challenges. There are some things that went well. I was very happy with my invisible zipper -I got a perfect colour zip and I used my binding foot to bind the edges which looks very smart. So here are some pictures of that bit!!
In fat to make it uber neat inside, I bound all the edges with the grey bias, which makes me smile every time I put it on :) I think I m becoming a convert to neat insides!!!
And then I was done. If you didn't get the idea before, I totally love this top. Next time I'll make it in half the time I m convinced now I understand how it goes together a bit more! Hope you like it and hope these tips help if you are giving it a go !!
Messy Essy Makes