A few more pieces that I managed to accomplish this summer included a couple of tops from McCall's 6566:
I bought this pattern because, while the tops are really very simple, there are some design/style lines tossed in that added a little interest. I also liked that the fabric recommendations included both knits and wovens, thus expanding the possibilities.
I started with View C, which is a dolman-sleeved top with a plain front and a gathered inset at the lower back. I thought it looked like a good possibility for the type of loose, airy tops I like to wear in the summer. I don't seem to have a picture of the first version I made, which ended up being much too large through the body and too wide in the neckline. I wear that version for casual weekend wear, but it's much too sloppy-fitting to wear to work. For the second version, I went down a size. I also then offset the center front and back pattern pieces about a half of an inch past the fold of the fabric when cutting, which effectively reduced the circumference of the neckline by two inches and took a little more out of the width of the body as well. This gave me just what I wanted for a loose-fitting, but not overwhelming, top. This version I made out of another of the rayon challis I've gotten from Fabric.com.
I love how this top turned out and I wore it quite a bit this summer. I know I will be making more next summer.
I also wanted to try View D, which has a cross-over back inset. I used a rayon knit for this one. When looking at the pattern pieces, I appeared to me that the cross-over back might be lower and more revealing that what I wanted, so I raised the angle of back neckline a bit. The pattern piece is show in the photo below. The curved red line is the original pattern line. I cut starting about an inch and a half above that line at the side back seam, gradually blending back to the original line.
This pretty much worked, but I will raise the back even more next time I make this one. It's still a little lower than I would like--okay for weekend wear, but it doesn't feel appropriate for work. I'll also go down a size over all for the next one, as this turned out a little oversized, and probably raise/narrow the neckline in front as well. But, really, I think I like the pattern and it could be fun to play with--color blocking, combining multiple prints, stripes changing direction, etc. My fabric had a tie-dye effect that I could run in different directions.
Here's the back view:
Another pattern I finally got around to making this summer was the Sewing Workshop's E-Dress/Skirt. This is a downloaded pattern from the SW website.
I'm not really a dress person, but I love a good skirt. And now I'm kicking myself for not getting to this one sooner than I did. This skirt has simple lines, but I love how the bottom band is shaped so as to give the skirt a bit of a lantern shape. I made my first version out of a green rayon/poly/lycra woven (no idea where I got this fabric from--it's been sitting on the shelves for awhile).
Once I knew I was happy (excited, really) with the fit and look of the pattern, I pulled a charcoal gray pinstripe 100% linen out of the pile of summer "Chosen Ones" fabrics.
The bottom band on this skirt is another opportunity to play with fabric. I've been thinking about some embellishment or fabric manipulation ideas for other versions of this.
This SW E-Skirt pattern will be a regular TNT in the skirt pattern rotation for me. I've got a couple planned for my fall/winter sewing and I think this skirt could be a real workhorse garment in anyone's wardrobe!
I've started sewing for fall and winter. Around here the last couple of years we seem to be getting less and less fall, more and more winter. It makes me want to sew coats and jackets!