Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Neckline alteration and a new TNT!

Today I made TWO new tops. This pattern was quick and easy and I love it. It is the sleeveless top from Pamela's Patterns Versatile Twinset. The first one I made from a cotton knit that did not have much stretch. Whenever I make tops, I always have the problem of them being too full above the bust. It seems like I need to dart the neckline. So, that's exactly what I did - but to the pattern, not the top.

I took a little dart at the neckline, and then cut a slit from the armhole toward the dart until the pattern lay flat again. This is like rotating a dart, but what it actually did was bring the shoulder seam up and in closer to the center front. This alteration increased the armhole a bit, so I reduced it at the shoulder seam by the same amount. You can also see where I drew the purple line. I cut it there to lower the neckline just a bit. After I did this alteration, of course I had to try it out. I found this great slinky knit that I had purchased in Mazatlan a couple of years ago that I have been afraid of since I bought it! I have always heard how hard slinky is to work with, but for this simple little top, I really had no problems at all.

Here you can see the neckline of the first top and how it gapped a bit.

Here is the second neckline, lying much more smoothly.

Of course, the slinky fabric will lie better anyway, but I think the alteration is going to make this top a favorite TNT!

Back to the Pamela's Pattern. I LOVE this pattern. I had to make ABSOLUTELY NO FIT ALTERATIONS - NONE! ZIPPO! (OK, the neckline thing, but that's different. Usually I have to:
cut narrower in the shoulder
Wider at the hips
Do a FBA
Add A dart
Do a Forward shoulder adjustment

I did not have to do any of this. I bought this pattern because I had seen one Anne had made on the Gorgeous Things blog a while ago. I liked the little bolero pattern, so I bought it. Then I found this on the Pamela's Pattern website today:

Here are just a few things that make Pamela's Patterns different from commercial patterns:

Commercial Patterns: Shoulder seam sits too far back on the shoulder

Pamela's Patterns: A forward shoulder is built into the pattern

Commercial Patterns: Shoulder seam extends too far past the shoulder

Pamela's Patterns: Shoulder seam is smaller to give a more realistic fit

Commercial Patterns: Back neckline is not high enough, causing shirts to "fall" back

Pamela's Patterns: A high round back is incorporated to keep the shirt where it should be

Commercial Patterns: Armholes are too long, creating a pucker in the armhole area

Pamela's Patterns: The option to petite the shirt and armhole area

Commercial Patterns: Garment pulls across the bust

Pamela's Patterns: Choose from two fronts - darted and undarted for a smooth finish no matter what your cup size!

Commercial Patterns: Too much fabric in the waist area

Pamela's Patterns: Built -in "essence of waist"

Commercial Patterns: Too tight though the hips

Pamela's Patterns: More generous in the hip area

Commercial Patterns: Sizing never seems to be right

Pamela's Patterns: More realistic sizing

I would have to say that all of the above is true for me. Now I guess I'm going to have to go back to her website and consider buying another pattern!


Gail said...

they look great and so summery. What is a TNT?

gwensews said...

That is super--when you find a pattern that you love. Thank you for the comparisons between Pamela's patterns and commercial. They look fabulous on you.

Little Hunting Creek said...

I love her t shirt pattern - like you I made almost no alterations to it. How refreshing! Now I think I need this pattern too. It looks good on you

goodworks1 said...

Nancy, these tops look great! And thanks for the list!

I have a question for you: Why did you decide to cut the extra from the shoulder rather than rotate the extra into a side dart or gather?

Oh, and I guess the obvious question that I should have asked first: Did you use the darted bodice or the plain one? I can't seem to make your photos larger to see.


designdreamer said...

Plenty of my tops have that gap in the neckline as well, so I think a dart/tuck would work for me as well, however I DO NOT need a FBA, if anything, it's a SBA :(
However, I too am a tad confused about how you accomplished this. I (think I) understand the dart you did in the neckline, and then needing to cut to that dart to allow the pattern to lie flat, but it looks like you made two small darts from the armhole too, or did you add tissue UNDER a spread? I can't determine from the enlarged photo. TIA!

Nancy Winningham said...

Gail - a TNT means tried and True pattern

Elaine - I used the darted front on this top

goodworks1 said...

Thanks, Nancy. I guess my next question would be why you didn't rotate that tuck into the existing dart?

The reason I ask is that I personally need the alteration you show at the neckline, but I also need to take a tuck or two at the armhole because it tends to gape on me. I wouldn't want to add to that problem. But I'm starting to figure out that probably you don't have this problem.

Linda said...

Nice tip regarding the neckline. I am going to try that. I also have one of the Pamela patterns and need to give it a try.

Chicago Sarah said...

Ooooh I just bought the twinset pattern hoping for some work outfits- now I'm looking forward to using it (first time with Pamela's patterns).