This last week I have had to seriously curtail my computer time because of the muscle spasms so I’m only now catching up on all my favorite blogs. But I’ve been sewing, both in my head and in real life.
OK, so I told you I needed a new TNT knit top pattern because my good old KS3003 had issues I couldn’t fix. (Looking back, I probably could have fixed them but didn’t really know how right then.) Enter McCall’s 6355. I first tested it as a dress with long sleeves:
I started with size 12 and made some flat pattern adjustments based on a Lands’ End T-shirt I wear for sleeping. It measures 14″ from shoulder point to shoulder point and I like where the seams fall. It measures 19.5″ across at the underarm and 17″ at the waist. I wanted a similar fit. I then used the length proportions from the KS3003 because I thought those would be a good start.
- shortened the back by 1″ just below the armhole, redrew dart;
- re-angled the back armhole from the notch up to get 7″ measurement from center back to the shoulder point;
- shortened the front ½” just below the armhole;
- deepened the bust dart by ½” (side seams are now even);
- redrew the front armhole from the dot up to get 7″ from center front to shoulder point;
- copied the neckline from the gray shimmer dress;
- lowered sleeve cap by ¼”, blending at notches;
- lengthened sleeve to wrist length.
I thought the dress looked pretty good but there were some wrinkles I didn’t like. They seemed to be pointing to the bust but pinning a deeper dart didn’t seem to help. It took me a while to figure out what the deal was but when I realized I was pulling up my shoulders as if to shrug, to make the wrinkles disappear, it was clear the shoulder slope was too straight. (It’s not the pattern’s fault; it happened when I re-angled the back armhole.) I have square shoulders so never in a million years would I have thought I’d be making a sloped shoulder adjustment. I made it just ¼” on both front and back, and tested it out in a gray sweater knit.
After the dress was sewn, I took in the side seams ½” on each side at the waist, tapering up to the bust dart and down to the hip. This helped give it a nicer shape so it can be worn without a belt. The side seam shaping worked well in the gray top, too. For future dress versions, I’ve added 1.5″ to the length so that the hem will come to the top of my knee.
For the gray sweater, I used a 2″ strip on the cross grain, folded in half, to finish the neckline. This closed it up a little and made it look more like a crew neckline than the originally intended scoop neck. I usually wear scarves when the weather is cool so it makes little difference here but I wanted to try the technique and add it to my repertoire.
The sleeves look a bit wide from the elbow down and I might taper them a little in the next version. The suggested fabrics for this pattern are both knits and wovens and I am looking forward to trying it out in a wool crepe soon.
That’s all I have right now. Or rather, I’d keep typing, only I have to keep my neck muscles happy so it’s time to go. See you soon!