Hi everyone! I had such a fantastic weekend. Mr Rae’s parents had the kids for four days so Mr Rae and I got to have a nice relaxing “stay-cation” at home by ourselves. The house always feels so quiet when the kids are gone. It’s weird. And of course I miss them and we Skype or talk on the phone every day if we can. But I always know they are having so much fun at grandma’s (she has a pool — need I say more?) which allows me to relax and do all kinds of things I want to do, like sew, sew, sew! So this weekend I finished dress for Clementine (I know, yet another one…snooze) AND a short-sleeved Negroni Shirt for Mr Rae which I would photograph for you but it’s already in the wash (you can get a little peek here though) and this lovely Wiksten Tank for myself.
Yeah!!! I had hoped to make one of these during the Spring Top Sewalong earlier this year, but got stalled when my measurements led me to a size that was way too big. I’ve learned over the past few years how important it is to always make a muslin (usually just out of cheap white muslin, not a “wearable muslin” which takes longer), but I’m starting to realize now just how much time it really does save (and wasted fabric, for that matter). For muslins, if you skip the finishing/hemming and just machine-baste all the seams, you can get a REALLY quick feel for whether it will fit or not. Anyway, I ended up getting stalled on the muslin step during STS because I selected a size too big, but when I finally decided to try it again this weekend, I found that I had already traced the smaller size I needed (another YEAH! Way to think ahead, Past Rae) so it took no time at all. The fabric here is a super lightweight cotton lawn that has almost a chambray-look to it that I found at Mood last fall in NYC. The stripe is woven into the fabric and it has a very breezy texture.
I found (and I’ve seen others encounter this problem as well) that because I have curved shoulders that the back of the neck gaped something fierce, in both of the sizes I tried. Normally the fix for this would be to add some shoulder darts, but luckily I found that by pinching off the amount of excess on the muslin (it was about 2″ total), I was able to just move the pattern piece over the fold by 1″ at the top and the problem was easily corrected:
So basically I took 2″ out at the neck but angled the pattern piece so that the bottom center edge lined up with the fold. As you can see the result worked out just fine.
For others thinking about purchasing this pattern, I recommend it! Once you have the size you need, it’s such a quick sew. If you’re small-chested as I am you can make it without modification, but I’ve noticed that those with more up top tend to get creases/tightness in the bust area. If this is the case, I’d highly recommend either making it out of knit fabric (you might need to go a size down for this) or adding a bust dart, something that is actually fairly easy to do (the Threads Sewing Guide: A Complete Reference has a nice easy section on this, but there are a fair number of places online that show you how as well). Also, definitely go lightweight when it comes to picking fabric for this one, lawn or voiles are the way to go here, not quilting cotton so much (although you could try!!). Otherwise, I think the cut and style of this tank are lovely, absolutely perfect for summer!
Any other favorite summer patterns I should know about?