Meet Sophie. I like her a lot! Sophie is one of Tessuti’s new patterns, and as soon as I saw it I knew she had to be mine. I was in such a hurry to purchase that I bought the top instead of the dress, but that’s OK, I can draft my own skirt if I go that route – and I’m sure I will before long. It’s just too good.
Sophie has a beautiful fold back lapel that could be worked in so many ways. Colette made a beautiful version with a button and loop that I’m going to try at some stage, and another version I saw with the lapel removed for a plain V neck. I had less than a yard of some lovely linen I had been saving which was not quite enough for anything substantial, but I managed to squeeze this top out of it by cutting the back in 2 halves and joining down the centre seam and by cutting the facing and bindings from another beautiful striped linen that was tucked away. I had forgotten to print out the instructions so freestyled it and french seamed the back and sides and used this brilliant tutorial for attaching the binding – which was game changing for me. I didn’t interface the lapel as my facing fabric was slightly stiffer than the body fabric.
I’ve tried a lot of Tessuti patterns over the years and always love their simple styles, which are classic and flattering on a wide range of body shapes. I love that the simplicity can be so beautiful on its own, but also made a great canvas for your own design features or for letting a particularly beautiful fabric sing without distraction.
For me – the sizing can be a difficult thing to pin down – and I’ve found muslins to be a must. I have learned that on my body shape it might be best to go down a size (or 2) and see how that works. I held a measuring tape across the flat pieces and across my body to ensure there was as much ease as I was happy with, cut the bodice only from non-precious fabric and tried that, then on to the final project. I think I’d be an M for this project by their measurements, but I ended up cutting a Small and I’m really happy with the fit.
And here is Eva – another Tessuti beauty that I have had my eye on for years… YEARS. I have tried on other people’s Eva’s at Craft Camp because I wasn’t sure of the shape on me – and while I love it on other people, it just seemed a bit shapeless on me. Recently I tried on one that I was sure would be way too small, and while it was loose on the maker, it was snug on me, and I kind of liked that. So I thought I’d cut out a muslin and fiddle with it from there. A small, is good on me! I shortened the skirt through the bottom panel – doubling the recommended reduction cause I’m only 157cm and it is a long garment.
My version is made from some lovely slightly polished cotton in a steel grey from a dear friend’s late mother’s fabric stash. I machine embroidered the bodice and one of the skirt lower panels to add some interest. I also did a bit on the back of the bodice where the skirt joins to break up the huge expanse of grey. I love machine embroidering, and letting the needle wander all over the fabric until the density of thread makes patterns of its own within the wider pattern. Fun. So much fun.
I can see lots of variations in this pattern. I love it colour blocked like this, but it would also we great cropped as a tunic, or mini dress, or as a wrapped version in some beautiful wool for winter. Hello Eva! So glad to have you in my collection.