Making basics with the Molly Top

In the last year I have been working hard to make the things I wear every day, and that means basics.  perhaps not the most exciting sewing, but these Sew Over It Molly Tops  from the My Capsule Wardrobe E-book get so much wear.

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This magenta and grey is my first attempt and it did go together very smoothly.  I decided to use the neckband on the cross-grain, but this was a mistake because there wasn’t enough stretch in that direction.  It ended up hanging away from the body quite a bit at the neckline so I have fudged a fix by turning the neckband down again and stitching it in place.

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This pattern is one of 5 PDF patterns in the e-book. It is a loose-fitting, kimono sleeved top with a dipped hem. The sizing is spot on. It is loose and flowing without ending up oversized.

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I now have two short-sleeved versions, and a long-sleeved top (all striped which did create some extra work matching).  It does help that you don’t need to stripe match at the sleeve seam, because the stripe direction changes.

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All three of my tops are made with jersey from Girl Charlee who really should be your go-to place for jersey.  These are all quite lightweight, so don’t have loads of stretch and do need to be handled a little carefully to stop them from stretching out.  The two short-sleeved tops are 1/2 inch stripe, cotton jersey blends available here in teal and magenta.  There are lots of other colour options too.  The long-sleeve is similar, but unfortunately now out of stock.

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On my long-sleeved version I have found the sleeves a little short and they got stretched out hemming so I have since added a cuff.  Not really sure that it helped, so I may remove the sleeves and keep it as another short-sleeved version.

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I would definitely make more of these.  If you didn’t have stripe matching to deal with they would be such a fast make. The short-sleeved version only has 3 pieces- front, back and neckband.  Not so sure about the sleeved version, perhaps I should try again in a more stable jersey, but at the moment I think I prefer the Tilly and the Buttons Agnes Top which I will be reviewing here shortly!

Ultimate Wrap Dress

I have two ultimate wrap dresses to share today.  I was given this pattern for my birthday in September by my lovely sister-in-law.  I had to make it up right away!

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My first version was made with a lovely purple double knit from my stash.  It came from Calico Laine– one of the most friendly and helpful stores I have used.  It has a nice weight and drape and is just perfect for this type of project.

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The pattern is described as an advanced beginner pattern, and if you have ever sewn with a knit fabric before you should have no problems.  The construction is really simple and well explained.  The whole dress came together very quickly.  The only tricky parts are turning the ties and top stitching the very long hem/facing!  The ties are very long, perhaps because they are the same length whichever size you make and I made a size 8.  If you were a bit bigger, the extra length might be needed.

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Having had success with the first attempt, I decided to make another in a more special fabric.  This dress is made from a stretch cotton bought at the Exeter Sewing Machine Company.  I couldn’t find it on their website, but in store they have a fantastic basement of fabric- a sewists treasure trove!

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Because this version is a woven, rather than a knit, I did need to finish all the seams to stop them unravelling.  Enter the new birthday overlocker!  I was too scared to just overlock the seams, and some of them needed pressing open anyway to allow for the ties, so I just overlocked the seam allowance instead after sewing on my machine.

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I also decided to square off the corners on the bottom of the wrap sections.  I just thought it might be simpler to keep all my seams neat that way.

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Having found the ties too long previously I guessed a little at what would be a better length this time.  They are a tiny bit short to tie on the side, but tie at the back just fine.  The little bit of stretch in this cotton still helps it to conform to the body and is pretty comfortable.  I usually wear a cami underneath because the cross-over neckline is a little bit low without.

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Both of these dresses are lovely with tights and a cardigan.  I might have to think about making a lighter, short sleeved one for the spring and summer.

Two Heather Dresses

 

This pattern was released a little before Christmas and it was perfect timing to create some cozy winter wardrobe staples.  Heather is a princess seamed jersey dress and is just super comfortable and as a bonus has great roomy pockets!

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My first Heather dress was actually my Christmas morning dress.  Christmas is certainly a day in which jersey dresses win- you can eat as much as you like!

Both of the dress fabrics came from fabricland.  I did manage to squeeze both of these dresses out of just 1.2m of fabric.  I slightly misread my fabric buying notes, but fortunately it worked out OK!  The red floral dress is this and the purple can be found here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

There are a couple of fiddly stages in the instructions to attach the pockets, but the instructions are good if you follow them accurately and carefully.  My purple dress ended up with cuffed sleeves and contrast pocket linings in order to get it out of my measly 1.2m!

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Cute contrast pockets!

Like several other bloggers, I did remove about 3 inches from the length and about 4 inches from the hip, graded to nothing at the waist.  I don’t have the most enormous hips, but that does seem to be quite a bit to take in (1″ from front and back at each side seam).  It now fits beautifully and is everything you could want from a winter dress- comfortable, stylish and pockets.  I can definitely see more of these dresses in my life!  I have couple of Ponte’s from eBay just crying out to become Heather dresses sometime in the future.