Thursday, January 07, 2016

A New Tunic...

Seriously I never thought that I would be knocking off anything designer for my new casual style but I came across this Valentino top on FarFetch and fell in love.

...and it hit me that I could make that to wear to work now. Just add some sleeves (cause it is a little chilly outside) and wear it over a pair of slim pants or even leggings. This would work!

I already knew that I would use my TNT dress pattern shortened to tunic length for this top. So the next stop was the fabric collection where I found the perfect Armani red wool blend for this top!  I pulled some red rayon bemberg for lining, a red invisible zipper, and I was all set.  Seriously, nothing was bought to make this top.  It all came from the collection! Yes!!!

The Supplies ~
Red wool blend is Giorgio Armani fabric that I bought from Fabric Mart years ago. Yes, more sewing from the collection!
22" red invisible zipper
Red rayon bemberg lining
Red rayon seam binding
Red rayon piping


Pattern Alterations ~
Since I want to make more tunics, I made permanent pattern pieces from my TNT dress pattern.


I even altered the sleeve because it's just a little too wide in the bicep area (woohoo! can't believe I typed that!) The alterations were more about shortening the pattern than anything else.



A Little Construction Information ~
Again I've made this top/dress/tunic so many times that sewing the tunic was easy. However I made a few design changes to my tunic that are not a part of the Valentino top. 
  • I added long sleeves
  • Used a center front seam for the tunic front to add shaping
  • Added red piping to the neckline 
  • Added red piping to the sleeve hems
  • Used a hem facing on the sleeve hems to cover the piping since the sleeves are unlined.

Once the lining was added, I machine stitched the hem. The tunic was hemmed using hem tape and hand hemming it.

To make the bow I used a rectangle that was 4" wide and 60" long. I cut it from the fashion fabric and the lining fabric. I came up with those measurements after measuring the width of my shoulder seam since the bow has to fit on the shoulder and then hang down the back.

Just when I thought it was okay, I realized that I didn't really like the bow. It won't fit under a cardi or topper and it's a little impractical for this job. So I ended up not putting it on the tunic.

A Few More Pics ~
I photographed the tunic with leggings and with the black ponte skirt I made recently.

Tunic with Leggings



Tunic with black ponte skirt


Conclusion ~
Originally I started working on this to wear to my Company's Holiday Party. Instead I caught an awful cold and didn't sew at all before Christmas. This was the first piece I worked on during my Christmas Break. So even though I'm blogging about it in 2016, it was one of my last garments made in 2015.

I like that the Valentino top inspired me to make this tunic.  However, with all designer inspired pieces, you have to sew what works with your lifestyle. This as is will work well now and fit into my Chicos Chic wardrobe plan!

...as always more later!

47 comments:

  1. Very smart Carolyn! What a great start to the new sewing year...

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  2. Just wonderful. My monitor is reading the color as a coral red and it looks superb on you. Very flattering color and style.

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  3. Did you make the bow? You could add it later; it's pretty sweet without but a great add on possibility. Love the red

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    1. Yes I did make the bow but it does make the tunic look quite a bit fancier...even my daughter said to leave it off.

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  4. Very pretty and I love the piping detail!

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  5. Smashing colour! The pipework looks great - raises the refinement level. Could you add the bow (like a brooch) when the mood suits?

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    1. I guess I could add it on later...and I did hold onto it.

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  6. Red really is your colour Carolyn. This tunic looks great on you and the fit is very flattering. The bow would look awesome for a more formal occasion too.

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  7. The piping looks to be an exact match. Did you buy them at the same time to go together, or was that pure luck? Or did you make the piping yourself?

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    1. Martha - nope all three pieces were purchased at different times. I think I just know the shade of red that I like so I collect in that shade. Though I was pleasantly surprised that they all coordinated.

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  8. Awesome! The color looks absolutely beautiful on you!

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  9. You look amazing. I love this red colour on you.

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  10. Despite the bold color I think this is a very versatile tunic by just changing your accessories. The piping touch adds a nice, finished touch - well done Carolyn! Karen

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  11. I love the red color AND that you had all components for such a stunning top in your stash !! Just a quick question - what was the thought in not lining the sleeves ? Would they be too bulky lined ? Thx

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    1. I don't line sleeves anymore since menopause it just makes me too hot. It's why all my dresses were sleeveless. So it's a personal choice for me.

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  12. You look fabulous in this tunic! It fits you perfectly and the red is perfect for the winter doldrums. I think this will become a basic as you can dress it up or down with accessories. I love how you "see" what the designers do and make it your own. You have taught me to do that, too, so now I pour over catalogs and web sites to look for details.

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  13. I really like this color on you!

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  14. I'm also a fan of tunics, but I have to admit that this one is pretty spectacular. Red is definitely your color.

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    1. Helene - I've made a few of the boho-type tunics but I'm more of a tailored look girl and will probably be slicing and dicing my pattern now to make more of this look.

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  15. Utterly great color! I love this styled with the leggings.

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  16. Aren't you looking slender!

    So you saw the top, and made one exactly like it except that it was totally different. :) I want to hug you as I do the exact same thing. Very pretty!

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    1. Thanks Leigh! Yes that's pretty much what I did! And great minds think alike.

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  17. Wonderful color on you! As always, very nicely sewn.

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  18. I love the end result! It looks great on you!

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  19. Hi Carolyn! I really like this tunic, but I think you gave up too quickly on the original design. You could get more mileage out of it by making the bow detachable with a couple metal hooks sewn to the back of the bow and thread eyes sewn in the well of the shoulder seam. Voila, a tunic with a bow on the shoulder when you want it there!

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  20. This is a very pretty tunic and a great wardrobe addition.

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  21. I adore this tunic, Carolyn! The fabric is luscious, and the fit is very flattering on you.

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  22. Lovely! Excellent that you now have a TNT tunic pattern.

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  23. You look hot! Awesome tunic!

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  24. Really great make. I'd save the bow and just safety pin it on should the right occasion appear. Maybe the office Holiday party next year?

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  25. Wow...this is very flattering on you! Sometimes simpler is better, I guess. You've inspired me to try the tunic top/legging look!!!

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  26. Wow ! You look great. You have really nailed this - the refined look you prefer that would fit in with your more casual workplace. I am a huge fan of the colour red.

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  27. I did put a comment here yesterday but I can't see it. I think the red is sensational on you (I see I'm not alone). I love the look with the tights at the beginning. I love the piping. Red always makes me feel fantastic.

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  28. Wonderful wardrobe piece and great styling. Those colors you've selected light you up!

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  29. Love this look on you--classic, with verve. And I agree that the bow isn't great--I just love the simple line. May I make one tiny fitting suggestion, hopefully without sounding negative? Because I always have to make this adjustment so I'm sensitive about it: I wish that the sleeve joined the shoulder seam just 1/2 inch higher.

    So glad you've now got a tnt for a classic tunic--looking forward to seeing many others!

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    1. Nope Wendy not negative at all! I will think about doing that on my next version. Thanks for the suggestion!

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  30. It is amazing that a red tunic can be such a versatile wardrobe addition. Great looks, I love all the ways you styled it. Red is definitely one of your colors!

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  31. WOOOO!!!! YES! Yes, yes, yes! That is the absolutely PERFECT length on you for a tunic. Tremendously flattering, just goes "KAPOW" when you wear it! You should do for yourself what you've done for your daughter and granddaughter -- treat yourself to half dozen more, all in beautiful fabrics from your collection. This tunic totally rocks!!! Cindy C., Creative Hormone Rush

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  32. Great colour and great fit. Make more!

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  33. That is fantastic! I love, love, love that first look on you - and red is your color!

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  34. Red is certainly your color! Very nice
    I can imagine the bow being crushed under a coat; nice idea but a little impractical for every day.

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  35. that second to last shot. THE BEST.

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