Tag Archive | sewaholic

A Weekend of T-shirts

So I dedicated the weekend of book club to sewing. I spent the week before tracing out pattern and altering if necessary.  I still haven’t figured out how to wash “washable” marker off of my hands.  After about 3 hand washings of soap and water and a shower the next morning; there was still faint traces of the marker on my hands.

Friday, I eagerly started to cut out the fabric for all patterns. Out of the 6 different items planned, only three were cut out on Friday: Pattern Review Winter street dress, the Sewaholic Renfrew, and the SBCC Tonic Tee 2.  It took two and half hours to get those three cut so I was really ready by then to switch over to starting to sew instead of cutting.  The rest of Friday and Saturday morning, I worked on the Pattern Review Winter Street.  Let’s save the Pattern Review Winter Street dress for another post.


Up first is the Sewaholic Renfrew t-shirt. I actually purchase this as a Craftsy kit.  Several of the KC Pinheads sewing group absolutely adore the Craftsy kits they had purchased.  The fabric included in my Renfrew kit is 2 yards of jersey knit (92% rayon and 8% spandex) which is 58 inches wide.

I chose to use a straight size 14 for my top. With summer coming, I decided to go with view B (the short-sleeved, v neck).  Since I was using a thin stripes, I followed advice from Lucky Lucille and traced out the front and the back twice.  I knew there would be no way that I would be able to pin all those thin stripes together for cutting on the fold.  It was one of those cautious carefully planned cutting out, like the bunny could not be located on the same side of the living room as the fabric lest he messes up the stripe matching.


Saturday afternoon, with the Supersizers Go streaming on Hulu, I started to put together my Renfrew t-shirt. Everything went together fairly easily.  The only piece I had troubles on was the neckband but that was mostly me trying to visualize what was happening there.  About 2 ½ hours later I had a finished t-shirt.

On to the SBCC Tonic Tee 2. My favorite part about the Tonic Tee 2 is the length.  That was the sole reason I picked it over the original Tonic Tee by SBCC.  The Tonic Tee 2 has a length of 26 inches from the highest point of shoulder to hem.  Otherwise, the Tonic Tee is just 24 inches. Two inches are fairly significant and I really like my t-shirts on the longer side.


I made a size Large. Just like when I picked the size for the Sewaholic Renfrew, I laid the Maria Denmark Kirsten Kimono Tee pattern piece over the pattern to be made.  As a reference, the fabric used for the SBCC Tonic Tee 2 is a 95% rayon/ 5% lycra jersey knit from Fabric-mart.


My Tonic Tee 2 fits well. But my only quibble with the pattern is the neckband piece is sort of thin; which seems to be more of an issue of visual balance on the neckline.  But even though I think the neckband piece is too thin, I don’t think I will make changes to it.  As I am wearing the t-shirt, the neckline of the top lays well against my skin.  A well laying neck line or a thicker neckband is a hard decision; but as I am typing this, a well laying neckline is winning out.


Pattern instructions has you insert the neckband flat before closing up the second shoulder seam. This is done so that it is easier to insert the neckline band.  When I make this t-shirt again, I will probably insert the neckband in the round as I feel I get a cleaner finish with it.

I started my Tonic Tee 2 when I put my dinner in the oven. Then there was an hour break for dinner.  Afterwards, another hour and half work until I had a finished t-shirt.  It was completed even before the Sporting KC game started.

The last t-shirt of the weekend was completely unplanned. While the game was on, I decided I wanted to cut out a second Renfrew top out of the last of the peacock-blue rayon/ lycra jersey.  I used the same as above with no pattern alterations.  I stitched it up on Sunday afternoon.





Best of PR- Sewaholic Gabriola Skirt


Sewaholic’s Gabriola skirt has to be the perfect summer skirt.  It is loose for those hot humid summer days when you don’t want anything clinging to you.  Last year, I wore my skirt often even on a day trip down to a couple of wineries in Louisburg.  So it is even picnic appropriate.

Normally, I have the blog post created before posting the pattern review, but since this was for the Best of PR contest, I had to post the review by March 31.

Here is the review (I put the blog only parts in italic):

1.  Why do you think this was voted one of the Best Patterns?

I think the pattern description explains it best: The Gabriola Skirt is flared to create a curvy A-line silhouette, narrowing the waist and elongating the body. Angled panels around the waist flatter the figure and look especially good in striped fabrics. Sew the yoke panels in a contrast fabric, or choose one fabric for the entire skirt. Looks great in printed fabrics as well as solids. A center back zipper makes this skirt easy to construct with a very sophisticated result. Look effortlessly stylish in a long skirt!

2.  Would you have made this pattern if it was NOT voted one of the top patterns of the year?

Actually back in January I thought of making another Gabriola skirt and bought a cotton lawn for it even before I knew this was one of the best patterns of 2014. I decided to use the ITY instead of the cotton lawn since I thought it was too light for a skirt.  The cotton was actually a cotton voile (I am not sure of the exact difference between lawn and voile).  The cotton voile is now being used for three tops which are currently being worked on. 

3.  How did you make your version of this pattern unique?

I guess the fact that I made the pattern in a knit instead of the recommended woven fabrics may make it unique. I also used an elastic waist.


4.  What size(s) did you make?

Size 12

5.  Did you find the sizing accurate compared to the measurements listed on the pattern?

I think so.  It is hard to tell because of the fabric (see question 6). 

6.  What fabric and trims did you use? What was the source of your fabric and trims?

Raspberry ITY from Fabric-mart. It isn’t on their website anymore. This fabric absolutely hated the rotary cutter. I think I ended up with a skirt slightly smaller than size 12 when finished because it would shift around under the rotary cutter. The yoke pieces were the worst for this and it looked like I had ears on my hips. So after everything was pretty much together, I went back with my design curve and smoothed out the yoke to gentle curves.

I bought 10 yards of the raspberry ITY  because I adored the color and so hopefully I am ready for the cutting battle when I go to use it again. I think it would work well for some leggings.


7.  Describe how you used the pattern instructions. Did you follow the instructions literally, did you figure out how to assemble on your own, or a combination of instructions plus own experience?

I have made this before so I didn’t look at the instructions. I did pull out my teal skirt for reference. I used the style of the “unit” construction method from the 1960s. I made the front first, then back and continued finishing up the skirt.

8.  Describe any alterations you made and discuss whether alternations were for fit or for design.

I made a straight size 12. My fabric seemed to not like the rotary cutter and shifted around even with my pattern weights so after I got it together I had to re-shape the yoke part.  I did take 5 inches out in the length of the skirt so it fit me better.  I didn’t take it all at one location.  At the lengthen/ shorten line, I took just one inch then measures so far down and took another inch out and repeated.  It was easier to smooth out the ridges after and didn’t affect the hem width.   

9.  What did you like and what did you dislike about the pattern?

I like the flare and that it is easy to wear.  If it is any help, the skirt did get bunny approval while I was making it.  Lala would sit on it as I was pinning the pieces together. 

10.  Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?

I really want a version in a print so if the right print came up I would sew it again. I think it is a great summer skirt so I would recommend others to look at it and see if it would work for them.

So since I didn’t know, the blog’s 3rd anniversary was on Monday April 6th.  It is a good thing that Word-press keeps up with that type of stuff because I surely don’t.