Thursday, 10 April 2014

Completed: Birdy Maternity Tee

I'm doing that thing where I write lots of posts in quick succession and then you won't hear from me for a couple of weeks. I should space these out, but what can I say - at the moment I have the time to sew and blog, and I don't know how long that will last for! Plus I'm joining in with Katy's Knit Week! :)


So, here we have... an exact replica of Tuesday's post, but in a different fabric! Yes, it's another Kimono/Ruched Mat Tee crossover. I did want to do something a bit different with this fabric. I was planning some interesting sleeves, but yesterday when I was wearing my blue version, it dawned on me just how much I love it. Both from an aesthetic and wearability point of view. It just works. And if it ain't broke, don't fix it... Plus I knew this was going to be pretty much instant gratification, which is what I need right now.


The make is the same as my last, with the only exception being that I added 2.5cm/1 inch to the length at the back. For some reason maternity bottoms have a really low rise at the back, so I wanted a bit more coverage there. I should have done this with my blue one. I actually don't know why I didn't. In order not to lose any of the ruching, I added the same length to the whole of the front pattern piece, but then removed it from the centre front fold and redrew the hem curve. This means that the centre front is the same length as the original, but the front side seams are 2.5cm longer to match the back.

The larger my bump, the curvier my lower spine becomes. Hence the excess wrinkles.
The fabric is another Fabric Godmother buy (now out of stock, sadly), and was a present from my parents (as was the pattern, as mentioned here). Thinking about it, I haven't actually disclosed on the blog my borderline obsession with bird print stuff, because, somewhat bizarrely I haven't actually made that much with birds on it! A non-blogged dress (but featured a lot during last year's MMM13) is, I think, the only other bird themed make.

Unblogged bird print dress. Don't I look delighted at the prospect of wearing it?
Yet, I have tons of bird themed RTW: scarves, tops, dresses, skirts, jewellery, not to mention ornaments, kitchenalia, pictures. You name it! The only reason I can surmise as to why the blog has escaped this, is because I haven't found that much bird fabric that I truly love. Being me, it has to be a particular calibre of bird, to gain entry to my house/stash.

Bird print H&M skirt
 I do have one bird fabric in my stash, that is so beautiful that I am scared to use it - a Marc Jacobs silk crepe de chine, that I bought on ebay about 2 years ago. Lladybird actually has used the same print, albeit her fabric is a Georgette, here.

Photo courtesy of Lladybird
Isn't that beautiful? One day I will pluck up the courage to use mine!

Anyway, back to these particular birds. The fabric was nice to work with. Again, drapey, stretchy and pressed well. BUT... there were some issues. The fabric is actually white on the wrong side, which always makes me think of cheap jersey. I know that's not necessarily the case, and quite possibly all printed jersey is like this, but that's my preconception. I did order a swatch, so I knew this in advance, but I chose to overlook it because the print was so nice. However, wherever the fabric is punctured by the needle, some of the white shows through. Not so that a casual observer would notice, but I notice and it annoys me, particularly on the top stitching at the neck (twin needle again, peeps!). The white background also means that when stretched, the white is visible. I countered this (and avoided having giant distorted birds over my belly) by cutting a Medium over the shoulders and bust, and grading down to a Large from where the ruching starts. This actually worked well, as the fabric has less stretch than the milano jersey.

See the white showing at every stitch? Right and wrong side
Finally there are a couple of flaws in the fabric which of course I didn't notice until after I'd cut the pieces. Firstly, there is actually a teeny hole right in the middle of my front bodice. It is entirely possible that I nicked the fabric somehow, but since this is right in the middle, I'm not sure how I could have managed it. I mean it's absolutely minute, but it is there. I saved the day, by applying a very small Elastoplast (Band Aid) of black interfacing on the wrong side. It's still slightly visible from the right side, but again not to the casual observer.

Hole!
"Elastoplast"
No hole - although you can see the white where it had laddered slightly.
Can't see it now though, can you? (Clue it's above the upside down goose(?) right in the centre of this pic)
Secondly, there is a dark line running across the fabric - again on the front. I didn't actually notice that until I put the top on today to wear, so it's not that obvious. But it is a bit annoying. It wasn't horrifically expensive fabric, but it certainly wasn't cheap.


But. It's a tried and tested shape. It's comfy. It has great colours. And it has birds on it!!!! I love it!


In my last post, I wrote a bit about my experience of using twin needle. Since then, Colette also posted on the subject. I have added the link (and another, which is possibly even better) to that post, but I wanted to mention it here too. Well worth a read if you are new to knits.

22 comments:

  1. Both of those tops are lovely. I have yet to try a double needle but would like to at some point. It's a shame that the fabric wasn't perfect, but really everybody will be admiring your work with both top and baby bump and not focusing on the details.

    I hope you enjoy your maternity leave, it's great having time to fill or not as you wish. I think a lot of mine went on cheesecake and naps, with the odd bit of knitting. You've reminded me that I have at least two blog posts waiting to be written too, thank you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cheesecake sounds great. I'm not good at daytime napping, but I probably should try a bit harder. Maybe next week!

      Delete
  2. I love the fabric, how annoying about the wee flaws though! I wish I sewed when I was pregnant, the MN patterns look great! A x

    ReplyDelete
  3. Love that fabric, you can't see the flaws in the finished top, and you are looking absolutely radiant! I think we must have pretty similar tastes in fabric, I have the exact same Marc Jacobs silk and like you I haven't dared to use it yet. I'm considering using it for a BHL Flora, but I am still working up the courage to cut into it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, a Flora would be perfect in the MJ fabric! That would be amazing!!! I think I only have about 2.5m so I wouldn't have enough for such a full skirt.

      Delete
  4. Wow you are on fire, go you. I love this top. So clever how you lengthened the hemline. Thanks for the links too I'm beginning to really enjoy sewing with knits- I never thought that was possible!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Me too! And I equally never thought I'd like it!

      Delete
  5. Lovely top! Looks like you did a great job despite the troubles you had with the fabric. I love anything with birds on it too, but I too haven't actually made any birdy things to wear. I must change that!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, let's start a bird themed sewalong. Or something!

      Delete
  6. I love this fabric and your top looks great! That Marc Jacobs fabric is gorgeous too! I know what you mean about printed jersey but it's something I would never notice on someone else, just when I'm sewing something myself.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Oh, I think this is my favourite so far. It's funny how you notice these things when you sew - which aren't even noticeable to any observer, I bet loads of RTW t-shirts have the white showing at the stitchline. The MJ fabric is beautiful :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are right. No one else will ever notice that. I must stop over-analysing! :)

      Delete
  8. It's gorgeous! What a divine print :) Well found - good bird printed fabrics are definitely few and far between. And just for the record, you're making late pregnancy look amazing!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Hello I just found your blog! I've read back a little bit and love the polo shirts to t-shirts refashion especially. I will remember that if a decent one comes my way (the men in this house get very attached to their clothes and as a general rule tend to wear them until they are rags!). I'll be doing a little bit more rummaging through your archives when I next get a sit down! In the meantime, I am totally with you on the bird print thing and your new top looks fab. Enjoy your 'rest'!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Philippa! Thanks for your lovely comment! I'm glad you are enjoying the blog! x

      Delete
  10. You look lovely! The print on that top is darling, great work!
    Miche from Buttons and Birdcages

    ReplyDelete
  11. Me again, just to let you know I've nominated you for a liebster award. I know you've had one before, but come on anyone who can sew an d blog at 8 months gone needs an award. details on my blog.

    ReplyDelete

I love to hear from you!