I don’t know about you but in these times of plague, I’ve felt the need for a couple of basic wardrobe items. But you know me…nothing is ever quite so simple so let me show you my long-sleeved tee…with a twist…
By the way…I hope you’ll forgive the me-less photos. I’m due for a much needed haircut (currently fed up with how my style is going) and didn’t feel like showing my face 🙂 My stand-in Frida is, however, doing a splendid job at modelling for me. And what’s more she does what I tell her and never answers back…hah!
My fabric for this top is a soft, lightweight Tencel modal rib knit that I bought from Metermeter and I used it previously for this sleeveless tank in double thickness… So in my opinion, the fabric is rather sheer. You can definitely see underwear through when it’s used as a single layer. Now don’t get me wrong, it is a really lovely fabric and I imagine that in the other colours the this isn’t a problem but in ivory, I feel that it is. I notice on the website that they state “Even when stretched, it is opaque.” Which may be the case with the other shades but I feel that it’s a bit misleading for the Ivory. I would suggest getting a sample before you buy so that you can make your own mind up. Having said all this I’m seriously thinking about buying some of the red or chestnut colourway because the fabric is so lovely to wear.
The pattern that I used as a starting point for this basic design is good old McCall’s 6886.
It’s a fabulous jersey dress pattern that I’ve used for cardis and tops before but now seems to be OOP. Basically, though, any long-sleeved tee pattern or tee-shirt dress pattern will do.
A Functional Design Element
So as is often the case with creative projects, necessity is the mother of invention and for this make that was definitely the case. I needed something to disguise show-through without adding lots of extra thickness and complicated details. My solution was to simply add some different widths of fabric in ‘stripes’ at strategic places to add a little modesty and at the same time make a great design feature.
The rib of the fabric is slightly different on the wrong side, so I decided to go with that side for some variety and then I simply did a rolled hem on my overlocker on both edges. I also had the differential feed on my overlocker set to the stretch setting in order to get a bit of a ‘lettuce’ effect. Once the hemming was done I just stitched the large bands of fabric on top of the main fabric. I actually did a lot of the stitching for the bands by hand because I’ve been enjoying hand sewing a lot lately, but you could also use a narrow zig-zag stitch.
The top broader band covers my bra area and the lower section is at waist level and would disguise any lines that you might get from seeing the transition to the colour of dark pants or skirt for instance.
Oh, and PS…Here’s my tutorial on how to do a rolled hem
I added the same two bands of fabric onto each sleeve to make the design more cohesive and I love the result. It makes a basic top not so basic.
Finally, I finished off the neckline with a simple neckband folded double then overlocked and stitched down. The shape I chose is a cross between a scoop and a square (a squoop??)
I’ll be wearing this top with so many pieces from my wardrobe and it’ll be a perfect layering piece under jackets and cardis. You can’t beat a great everyday basic 🙂
So tell me what have you been sewing lately? I’d love to know…has your sewjo been coming and going like mine? Tell me in comments.
Thanks for stopping by to read my short-but-sweet post and I hope to be back soon. Take care.