It’s almost officially summer (the Summer Solstice is June 21st in the Northern Hemisphere this year), and it’s FINALLY starting to get warm here! I am so ready to think about summer sewing!
I completely got sucked into that change-of-season-restlessness/spring fever feeling going around, which is bad for your wallet, sewing, and general contentedness and I wanted to SEW ALL THE THINGS! The fact that this feeling coincided with the end of my Make 9 was rough, because it left me very unfocused and mentally breathless. Luckily, however, I found this project which actually fills a gap in my wardrobe for a cropped light layer that works with dresses and other garments with a natural waistline. It was also a great project after the surprising complexity of the shirt from my last post because I’ve made this before, so it fits and I know it goes quickly. Unfortunately, my having made it before didn’t stop me from making a small blunder, as you’ll see.
Today’s project is the cropped Coppelia Cardi by Papercut Patterns.
This is a wrap top with raglan sleeves. It has a neckband, cuffs, and long ties that also function as a waistband. It’s close-fitting, but comfortable in a fabric with the right amount of stretch.
Before sewing this, I relied on a few ready-to-wear options that I had when I needed this kind of garment, but they weren’t ideal (one is a wintry knit and the other is very casual). So this year, when a midweight, four-way stretch rayon/Lycra knit went on sale at Cali Fabrics, I jumped on board and got some in order to make this a reality.
This is the second time I’ve made this cropped, wrap cardi (The first, as well as the long faux wrap version can be found here.). This time around I did most things the same way. I do a few recommendations, however. I sewed around the hole that the tie goes through with a closely spaced zigzag, like you would with a buttonhole. A straight stitch looks much better, but I wanted it to stretch. Test your stitch on some scrap fabric first, though, because I had some distortion of the fabric the first time I tested it. I also recommend trimming the bottom edges of your neckband after beginning to attach the waistband/tie so that you trim it at the correct angle (yes, I’ve now trimmed it wrong twice). Finally, when the directions tell you to stretch your neckband as you stitch it, you really need to do that, maybe even slightly more than you think. I didn’t and you can see that my neckband stands away from my body a bit in a way it shouldn’t. I was afraid to stretch too much, so instead I went to the other extreme and stretched too little. Hopefully I’ve learned my lesson.
Neckband issues aside, I’m really happy to have this in my closet. It will be a good, yet inexpensive way to see if this is a style that I will feel good in with some of my natural-waisted garments.
Other sewn outfit details:
Camisole: Shortened slip from McCall’s 6696; unblogged
- Have you seen the jeans Jenny of the SoleCrafts blog made? Jeans are impressive enough on their own, but she made her own pattern! People who make their own patterns continually amaze me. I love reading Jenny’s blog because, even though we have different styles, she is completely fearless in her projects and figures out things I would use a pattern for or didn’t even know you could make at home (like shoes!). Amazing.
- Speaking of making shoes, Carolyn of Handmade by Carolyn makes ALL her clothes, shoes included! You can watch a video of her talking about the shoes she has made here.
- I definitely prefer paper sewing patterns over PDF patterns, and one more thing that has always been a strike against PDFs for me is that you either have to print a bunch of pages at home, or pay close to the price of the pattern to have the large sheets printed at a copy shop. Jenny of Cashmerette talks on her blog about how to print those large pages cheaply, and she goes over resources to do this for numerous countries. What a great idea. Even with my love for paper patterns, I certainly have several PDFs. The more money we save on printing, the more we have for fabric! 😉