Saturday, July 19, 2014

Cowl and the tank

The Cowl
Sometimes a successful muslin leads to a not so successful final garment - or maybe the end garment is successful but you realize it wasn't as awesome as at first.

New Look 6470, I had such high hopes for you :)

Here is successful muslin, in case you were wondering.

  • I cut/sewed a size 12 Shoulder, & 14 bust; in the front I used a size 14 hip, but in the back I used a size 16 and added 1/4" to each side.  
  • I also performed a 3/4" square shoulder adjustment.  
  • Used bias for back neck and armholes but ran into issues with the armholes stretching out and looking wonky - so I cut them off and added bias bands. 
  • Added 3 inches to the cowl - this brought it down into the armpit a bit and held it in place better. The underside of the cowl still attempts to show at times
  • The ITY was way more stretchy than my muslin fabric and thus the back was super huge.  I had to take a large dart of 4" out of the back! (2 on each side of the dart).  

This is not my coveted fabric - I couldn't yet cut into it until I had at least 1 perfect outcome. This fabric was to be a dress last year (or the year before, I forget) but it went awry so I chopped off the bodice and saved the 1 yard skirt part.  I'm ok that I probably won't wear it again.  

Just before this pic I saw a creepy dude walking our way

Here is my "take the darn picture K" look - with bonus creepy dude in the background. :D

Really, I like cowls on me and I think they are fast to sew.  I just wish I could have nicer armholes and that the darn cowl wouldn't flip so much. Plus, I realized that they just aren't practical for me because I bend down a lot in my day to clean, pick up the puppy, do the laundry, etc.  I am not comfortable flashing everyone!  I may try one of the other views for this pattern, but I think I'll save my coveted fabric for something else ;-)

And the Tank
K picked up this awful fabric last year at Hancocks one day. I have no idea what the stuff is but I dreaded sewing it up.  It is very thin, see-through, slippery, and has wavy vertical lines throughout - almost like a gauze but with no stretch. (Does anyone know what this is?) She's been whining about it here and there so I finally sewed it.  ** mystery solved, it is a Georgette **

I stole my Ottobre pattern (06/2012 #22) and lengthened the bodice into a tank. It is a size 140.  I also widened the armholes a bit because they were tight in her previous nightgowns

I made a sandwich (tissue paper on bottom, fabric, pattern tissue paper on top) to cut it out - because the fabric was slippery - this worked great. I used fold over elastic for the "bias" binding and flipped it to the inside, then topstitched.  I used a tiny rolled hem foot for the hem- I have strong dislike for that thing, and it must not like me back. I also sewed with french seams because the fabric is so see-through. K has a white tank under it in all these pics.  

The tank is cute, but tight over the chest.  I'm not sure she will get to wear it again.  Sad, because she LOVES this fabric. 

July Totals:
(stash is anything purchased before this year)
Stash used: 3.25 yards
Fabric Out: 6.75 yards
Fabric In: 5.5 yards

Totals for the year to date:
Stash sew this year: 34.25 yards
Fabric out in 2014: 126.25 yards
Fabric in 2014: 135.25 yards
~ Happy Sewing! ~ Kristin ~


  1. The cowl top actually looks quite nice. I'd never thought about the practicality of bending over with a cowl though...I can totally understand what you are saying cowls for me in the near future. And I love that sweet butterfly tank. I'm so lucky that if I make something too small I just pass it on as being made for the smaller girl (the joy of three close together daughters!). Coincidentally, I made myself a butterfly print maxi dress a few weeks ago in silk CDC and have just enough scraps left to put together a little skort for my middle miss. It's on the cutting table right now. I love butterfly fabric!

    1. Thanks Debbie! lol, yes, I didn't think ahead this time either.
      Sometimes I wish I was able to pass things down, too. Miss K cries every time I have get rid of one of her makes that she outgrows :) for the really special ones she asks to save it for her kids LOL
      I really loved the butterfly maxi you made - it is drop dead gorgeous!

  2. The fabric K choose is really pretty. Maybe she will wear it anyway, I know my girls will be quite determined if they really like something! I actually think your cowl looks really nice. I had problems with the back too so I am now thinking it's a drafting issue not my body as I assumed. I've written the post and will publish it tonight or tomorrow so you can take a look. I made 3 tops and I noticed the firmer single jersey ones don't want to flips out while the thin and stretchy one is slightly more prone to this. Not enough to bother me though. Personally I think yours is very pretty. Maybe consider wearing it on less active days if you get any!

    1. Thanks Philippa :) She certainly knows how to pick them!
      I"m sorry you had issues with this top too. I had such high hopes for the both of us! I enjoyed reading your post on it though and it looks really nice on you! Maybe I should try it in a cotton to see if it flips out less

  3. Oh it is such a pity that you are not happy with these two makes. From the photos they both look nice and I can totally see why K wanted this lovely print. I suppose wearing a tight vest under the cowl would be to warm? And the cowl might still hanging in stuff when bending down. Him can you sew it to the bodice with a few hand stitches maybe? Then it couldn't swing away from the body at least.

    1. Thanks Daniela - I never thought to wear a cami underneath - great idea! I will try that before I give up on it completely. I also like your idea about adding a few hand stitches to the cowl :)

  4. I do think the new cowl is really pretty, but I know what you mean about bending over. My Vogue 8634 cowl is a dramatic cowl, but much higher so the exposure risk is not quite as bad. Ok, I just went and looked at it on my blog; I think I did raise the neckline an inch or two.

    1. Thanks Joy! I'll have to try and see about raising the neckline too - that might help :D

  5. I love the look of cowls but agree that they aren't always pratical to wear for a busy mom! I think the top is cute...maybe wear it when you're out and about and not as likely to be leaning over?

    1. go out? certainly you jest? LOL ;-) Seriously though, it would be a great "go out" top. I love the blue color of it. I hope to try the new Colette Myrtle and see how that cowl compares. Thanks Cindy!


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