Today’s project is one I really wanted to squeak in on the blog before fall is officially over. I made this Esme top from Lotta Jansdotter’s Everyday Style in a fabric that was new to me: double gauze.
I made it for the Pattern Review meet-up at Pintuck & Purl back in September. One of the challenges for that meeting was to make something that was new to you, whether in a new fabric, with a new pattern or tool, or using a new technique.
I’ve made this top before (first iteration here), but one of the advantages of working part-time at Pintuck & Purl has been the opportunity to work with fabrics I’ve never tried before, and double gauze was on my list. I chose the Friskers Teal by Sarah Watts for Cotton & Steel.
I’d heard both good and bad things about this substrate. On the positive side, good quality cotton double gauze like this one from Cotton & Steel is extremely soft. It’s also pretty easy to work with like a lot of cotton is. On the down side, some double gauze can develop a sort of ‘halo’ around it, as one of my friends says. It almost gets a little fuzz that stands out from the fabric. I haven’t experienced that with this fabric so far, but it’s something to keep an eye on if you try it for yourself. Because of the loose weave, it can also grow over several wearings. Again, I haven’t found this to be too much of a problem with this particular double gauze (my friend tried another brand), but keep an eye on it if you try it. As far as the Cotton & Steel fabric is concerned, I would say this is a winner. It’s very soft and comfortable.
For this version of the Esme top, I did a major broad back adjustment, which is something I tend to need on woven tops. It definitely improved the fit over my first version, which I forgot to do a broad back adjustment on.
This is a good classic shape and is pretty quick to sew. There are numerous variations on it in Everyday Style, as well as several other useful basics throughout the book.
It’s starting to get cooler now, so just this week I put this top away until spring. I’m looking forward to wearing it again when the weather warms up.
This week I found my recommendations in my reading pile. I love to check out books. Some I read cover to cover and some I just scan to get a sense of what they are about. Here’s what I’ve got checked out from the library right now:
- The Curated Closet by Anuschka Rees is all about honing in on your own clothing style. It’s helpful in much the same way that the Wardrobe Architect Series from Colette is, and for sewing people, it can help you figure out what you like to wear and therefore, sew.
- All Creatures Great and Small by James Herriot is a collection of stories about the author’s life and work as a veterinarian in the Yorkshire Dales of England. It’s funny and filled with fabulous characters.
- Precious and Grace from the No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency Series by Alexander McCall Smith. I love this fiction series about Precious Ramotswe, the wise and gentle detective who lives and works in Botswana.
- American Cake by Anne Byrn is my favorite kind of cookbook. Each recipe has a great description and history of how it came to be. It’s a history of America…in cake.
- Shirtmaking: Developing Skills for Fine Sewing by David Page Coffin looks like an amazing, brilliant, and very thorough book. I think it’s above my level at this point, but if I keep sewing, I’ll get there eventually.
- Hug Your Haters: How to Embrace Complaints and Keep Your Customers by Jay Baer. I saw that the Craft Industry Alliance was reading this one and I got curious. I’m not a business owner, but it sounded interesting enough to page through. I haven’t gotten far, but I’ve already learned a thing or two, just from skimming through the introduction and first chapter.