Sunday, 24 April 2016

Mission Maxi by Jamie Christina

I prepared this pattern when I was leaving Switzerland but I didn't take it with me.  It's been on my mind since then, partly because I had a big haul of perfect knits from Delft and I didn't have the pattern handy!

Anyway, finally I had my chance.

I started with a tank top for fit.  I cut at the tank top line.  I was a bit between sizes but sized down to a 6 because I definitely wanted it fitted.  I was using scraps so I had to make a front and a back center seam so I zigzagged them to make them into a Design Feature.

The binding is yet another new one: you apply it in the flat to the outside of the dress, then sew the side seams, and then wrap it to the inside and topstitch it down.  Initially I was annoyed because I wanted the feel of something done FAST and all these bindings....ugh, patience.  But I really really like this finish.  I think it adds substance to the top of the dress, especially key for the actual dress version.  I didn't know whether I should be pulling any tension on the bindings as I applied them, and the answer seems to be yes, just a bit, because I didn't and there is just a bit of gaping.  Also I am congenitally unable to topstitch and catch that binding so I guess I should be more patient and like, baste?   Instead I had to go back and hunt down all the bits that hadn't been caught by my topstitching.  Or maybe ironing?  Because I can't see you'd have more luck with basting and I also am lazy with the iron.   

I didn't change anything for the dress version.  It's a sparkly cotton rayon blend, obviously with some lurex, and rather thin.  Luckily I don't spend my life staring in the mirror and it's really amazingly comfortable so I can overlook the bulges.  I think I cut about 4 inches off the hem, but it might have been more.  I didn't finish the hem.  I'm not offering you too many photos as it's hard to get even borderline flattering ones, but I think it looks better in reality than in pictures.

For future hacks to this top I'd readjust the back of the sleeve hole to make it closer to the bra straps.  It's not quite racer back and not quite plain, which makes finding a bra a challenge. I would also shorten the straps a bit, especially on thinner fabric, as on the dress version it sags during the course of the day and my bra shows. 

I'm still on the fence as to whether I make a side slit for better movement in the dress, cut it shorter, or leave it as is.  It's really comfortable though!  I'll probably wait until I get to the States and using the magical shrinking machine (ie a dryer) and then decide. 

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