Monday, March 08, 2021

Inspired by...

I love JJill, Chicos and Talbots garments. The silhouettes work for me, they're comfortable, and I like the way they use colors and patterns in their garments. So I get excited when a new collection drops online. What colors are they using?  What silhouettes are they remaking? What appeals to me and makes me want to reproduce it?

I'm an old school sewist. Design and fabric drive my makes. When I was in the corporate world I followed a lot of designers and incorporated their ideals into my work wardrobe. Now that my life is more casual, I tend to look to RTW vendors more. While I'm sewing casual, I'm still drawn to classic styling.

The early spring collection on JJill REALLY inspired me. We know I'm already sewing blue garments because of them. I saved a few images of tops that supercharged my sewjo. This is one of them...

...and here is my version.

I started with Vogue 9299 because it has all of the elements of my Inspiration Garment.

Supplies ~

Lightweight blue denim from Stylemaker Fabrics - this was recently purchased and is available here.

9 - 13/16" brass buttons from deep in the button collection

9" of 3/4" elastic for each sleeve hem

Pattern Alterations ~

I altered the body of the tunic to give me a little more room yet retain the close-fitting look. The finished hip measurement is 59.5" on the pattern and I'm more comfortable with 65" for sitting and standing ease. This alteration accomplished that.

To alter the front by I added space to the side seam so that it covered me and allowed the front .

Since the tunic has a yoke in the back. I altered the back bottom pattern piece by using the pivot and slide method. Simple yet effective changes that made the pattern pieces work for my body.

I also changed the sleeve pattern. While the different sleeve options are what makes this Vogue pattern I wanted a simple longer sleeve similar to my Inspiration Garment. Originally I was going to add the cuff but changed my mind as I was constructing the tunic.

To make the wider sleeve, I just slashed and spread the top sleeve piece. Then lengthened it and redrew the sleeve cap. After the changes I traced them onto a new piece of tracing paper to get a clean sleeve pattern.


If I make this again, I would flatten the sleeve cap a little. The elasticized hem is made from a 1" casing. It was topstitched on the top and bottom of the casing to give it a little more ummph. Simple steps that gave the tunic flare.

The Inspiration Garment has pockets. I'm not really a pocket woman. So I omitted them.

Construction ~

Sewing the pattern together was really easy. It's not a hard pattern to put together. The changes I made were:

- Add topstitching in a solid color

- Make the sleeves with an elasticized hem

- Add stay tape pieces to the side seams to strengthen them where they curve/end.

A Few Photos ~



I really like this tunic because it's perfect for working from home and for zoom meetings because of its' front. It will even be great for wearing outside! There's a little pulling at the bustline but that's due to it being dart-less. It's something I can live with and IF I make it again, I would address it.

This was also a pleasant sew. It didn't make me doubt my skills or want to throw it across the room. In these pandemic times, that's truly a win-win! LOL!


...as always more later!



28 comments:

  1. What a wonderful sexist you are!
    P.S. I like your version so much more than the off-the-rack version!

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  2. * Whoops! That should have been “sewist”, darned autocorrect!

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  3. I agree with Martha as I love the curved hemline. During lockdown I've only been wearing stretch fabrics but I'm planning a spring capsule wardrobe using garments I already own but I'm going to add some tops to go over leggings/trousers and your top has inspired me.

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  4. Great looking top! Love the curved hem.

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  5. caroline--your tunic has lots of pizzaz and you've styled it so youthfully! this is a great look for you.--anne

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  6. Very nice. I made a similar shirt, The Oversized Shirt by "The Assembly Line" patterns. They are very stylish and comfortable. I've just started getting Talbot's feed so I will have to start looking at their silhouettes and I just might sign up for JJill and Chicos to follow them. Thanks for the recommendation.
    Theresa in Tucson

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    1. Theresa - I've looked at that pattern but it's expensive to ship a paper pattern AND while I've printed a few pdf patterns its still NOT my go to move. So I've just drooled over the pattern line. This pattern was in my pattern stash. One of my goals this year is to use the stuff I've accumulated over the years cause there is just so much of it.

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  7. One more stunning addition to your wardrobe. I too am taking more Zoom mtgs. and will try in denim, even tho casual the front shirt like makes it business casual. Thanks for sharing

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  8. That is a great looking tunic and I really love all those buttons. Yours tunic is much better looking than the inspiration. You can take the time to add all those lovely thoughtful details.

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    Replies
    1. I like her tunic better too, specially the hem
      J

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  9. Carolyn, I sprang for the pattern instead of trying to adapt a shirt pattern because the reviews I read said the neck and shoulder fit was spot on, a critical element I think. I hear you on the "print and tape" of PDFs.
    Theresa in Tucson

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  10. You had me at the pretty statement sleeve, I'm really loving elastic wrists on sleeves lately. Especially when a wide elastic is used and it's not tight - if that makes sense. But then, that lovely curved split hem ::swoon:: I believe this top fits into many collections in the DSF closet - denim, blue, inspired by and work from home. Once again, I'm inspired by you and running off to see if I have that pattern in my collection {I hope I do!} g

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  11. I can also see this dress in different colored buttons for a more casual look. I have buttons from the "Jones & Vanderveer" site although they may be too small. I used to teach preschool so I still like bright colors. I love the silhouette of that dress. I now have an apple body but used to be a tall rectangle and I think that I need that pattern. Your version looks so good. The pattern is so versatile.

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  12. I love your version! Much better than the inspiration version. Great job!

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  13. Your look is impeccable! I just started cutting out a shirt dress this morning. I'm glad to be in good company. :)

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  14. Cute, cute, cute! Great button choice!

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  15. Caroline, your blog post is incredibly inspiring. Thank you for taking us with you on this journey from inspiration to a fabulous completed garment. I also appreciate the leads on where to look for RTW inspiration. Only one of the three stores you mentioned operates here in Canada, so the others had fallen off my radar.

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    Replies
    1. Oops! That's Carolyn, not Caroline. Sorry about that!

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  16. Fantastic. Our curved hem makes it soar.

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  17. The curved hem. Need to learn to edit. 😏😉

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  18. Hello-I love this pattern and I also made it last fall using some thrifted denim I had. I am a pocket woman ( my hands are always cold) and so added those. My sleeves aren’t like the pattern either. I first tried to do the ruffles-big mistake-I looked horrible in them so had to do my own thing because I didn’t have enough fabric to cut new sleeves. I’ve been reading for years but don’t think I’ve left a comment before but it was such fun to see something that I also made.

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    1. Those sleeves are very trendy on a very classic silhouette. I wanted to keep the classic so I understand why you changed out the sleeves.

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  19. Love it! The volume you added gives it the perfect shape!!!

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  20. I like it ...looks nice on you...try some of those funky sleeves

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  21. A win is a win! So nice when projects are fun and pleasant. And This is such a great basic.

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  22. I love this! You look fantabulous in it. Yes, I just made that word up, ha.
    I have a question, when you widen the sleeves, do you need to widen the armhole also? I’m getting back into sewing and I’ll need to adjust for my arms but I can’t remember.

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Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment! It is so appreciated!

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