21 May 2013

Simplicity 2365, View B (tunic)

This is my second attempt at this pattern since first trying it in 2011.  Despite it being too big in many places, it was reasonably wearable with a belt.  However, I sent this off to Wadderville because I could not get the collar stand to work.  The left side (facing) looks good, but the right side is all kinds of wrong.

I decided to give it another try, but opted for a bias-bound neckline instead.  More details below.

Fabric & Notions:
  • 2 yards of cotton voile
  • polyester thread
  • self-fabric bias tape
  • 70/10 Microtex sharp needle 
  • size 4.0 stretch twin needle (it's what I had on hand)
  • pintuck foot
  • serrated tracing wheel and wax tracing paper 
Machine Settings:
  • pintucks: 2.5 length, 2.5 width
  • seams:  2.5 length, 2.5 width
  • topstitching:  3.0 length, 2.5 width
  • tension:  4.0

Fitting & Alterations:

Originally I started with an 18 but that proved to be way too big.  So, I sized down to a 16 on the front and about a 14 across the back. 

To compensate for the decrease in width across the back created by using a smaller size, I made a 5/8" broad back adjustment.     

I lowered the bust fullness 1.25" (on both the side front and center front pieces).  I also made a similar width adjustment (as in the broad back) on the side front pattern piece. This adjustment adds extra width at bust level and slightly raises the armhole. I did not do a traditional FBA.

I can't remember the size I used for the sleeves, but I do remember shaving off a bit from the sleeve seam (not cap) to match the adjustments made at the side seams.

One thing to note is that the sleeve cap in view B has gathers and a pouf.  The print hides this detail on the front of the pattern envelope, but the line drawing shows it very clearly.  If you're not a fan of the pouf, I would suggest removing some height from the sleeve cap before cutting the fabric.

I took off 1/2" from the neckline so that the bias binding didn't creep around my neck.


I don't even remember why I bought a pintuck foot, though it definitely came in handy for this project.  The instructions have you mark the lines for the pintucks, "pick up the fabric" and press to one side, then stitch the tuck in place. You have to do this for each pintuck and these tucks aren't that wide.  Ummmmmmm...no!

Why do all of that work when a pintuck foot does it for you? =)  Coupling the foot with a twin needle tucks the fabric while simultaneously securing it with the zigzag stitch underneath.  The video on this site shows the creation of a pintuck in action.  Like the video shows, I also pressed my pintucks in one direction - in this case, away from the center front.

Even though I didn't follow the pattern instructions, I didn't lose much width across the front by making the pintucks this way.

Note:  Since I hadn't used a twin needle in a while, I had to consult my machine's manual to remind myself how to set it up.  The manual said to orient the second spool of thread so that the thread fell over the top.  This created all kinds of problems!  I had thread nests, skipped stitches, and broken threads.  When I flipped the spool so that the thread was underneath, everything sewed like normal.  I don't know if my manual has an error or not.  If you encounter problems with the twin needle, try not following your machine's instructions!

Self-bias Neckline
Collar stands are still a work in progress for me (see above hot mess).  When I saw Belinda's version of this top, I knew I wanted to copy her idea.  Thanks Belinda!  It was the perfect solution to a problem that still needs fixing.

I made continuous bias binding using this tutorial.  I've seen many different methods on making continuous bias strips, but this one has NEVER failed me.  I can get between 6 and 8 yards of bias binding out of a single fat quarter using this method.  And as a bonus, mastering the technique doesn't even take that much practice!  I was able to successfully make the binding on my very first try. 

French Seams
I sewed all seams (except the sleeves) with a french seam.  My fabric is very thin and would have probably puckered if I tried to serge-finish the edges.  I found that using a small Microtex needle helped to keep the stitches nice and smooth.  In finishing the armhole seams, I sewed the seam first and serged them together.  I don't notice any puckering in this area.

Narrow Hem on Sleeves
Because I was so focused on binding the neckline, I used the remaining fabric to create the bias strips and neglected to cut out the sleeve band.  So my sleeves are much shorter than intended.  To finish the hem, I sewed a very narrow 1/2" hem by folding under 1/4" twice and topstitching.


This is a good pattern with generous ease and a few different design possibilities.  It's great for warmer weather and is quick to sew.  I don't know that I'll sew it again any time soon, but it's definitely in the sewing rolodex if I want to revisit it again.

Here the top is accompanied by OOP Vogue 7880 (pattern photo credit:  Judith of Made by J).

Here the top is tucked in and paired with Vogue 8426.

Up next:  I'm working on styling my stash as inspired by the sensational SarahLiz.  This sew along couldn't be more perfectly timed.  I am focused on sewing small spring/summer capsules, busting the stash, and knocking off snoop-shopped looks.

Back in January, I made the following pledge:

"I, Lynn of You sew girl!, commit to using at least 12 pieces of stash fabric in 2013. I also commit to using at least 10 patterns from the stash. Stash includes any fabric or patterns on hand prior to the date of this pledge, 15 Jan 2013."

The Jalie jeans and Simplicity tunic count as two pieces of stash fabric sewn.  I won't count the patterns used because I've attempted them before.

I may be a little slow to blog over the next few days as my rusty desktop is finally showing its age.  Upgrades aren't even affecting it anymore, so after 10 years of faithful computing, I think it's time to put it down.  =)

Until next time, peace!



  1. I'm sorry Sister...you are a hot mess! First, the jeans...now pin tucks?!...Really?! I wanna sew like you when I grow up! This is is awesome! I love the fabrics and the pin tucks. What a great outfit! I would have bypassed the pattern altogether.... I love that top, and it looks great on you! I'm going to add the link to the pin tuck video to our resource page. Keep rockin'

    1. Thanks Vita! If only I could get that collar stand to work!

  2. I Have This Pattern But Didnt Realize ItRequires Pintucking! That's Too.Advanced For Me! Hihi. But Yours Are So Pretty , Great Job!

    1. Seriously Far, the pintuck foot does all of the work! All you have to do is mark where you want them to be. You can actually mark just one line and use the grooves on the foot as a measure and make evenly spaced pintucks. You can do it. Thanks for the compliment!

  3. Fabulous fabric. Cheers to you for giving it another go at it. TFS

    1. Thanks Rachelle! I'm quite happy with my shirt. It's a great pattern.

  4. I agree, this top Is really nice! I fits you extremely well!

  5. That top is BEAUTIFUL. Thanks for all of the info and links. Great job.

  6. Hi L, another sewing perfectionist - the white blouse was not too bad, but your certainly improved with the blue one - the tie finish certainly solved the collare problem. Glad you are on track with using your stash - can't wait to see your clothing capsules - great way to build your wardrobe.

  7. Sorry, you certainly improved,not your :-)

  8. I just finished up this top too (even this view), it will post on my blog in a couple of days. I did the pin-tucks as the pattern described, without the pin-tuck foot, it really didn't take that long, and wasn't that hard to those that still like the top and don't have the pin-tuck foot. I put the back on the fold, so no seam down the back. The collar does have a few issues that I'd fix next time I made it -- I like your idea, although ties drive me crazy (personally while working). I also noticed mine is a little long in the shoulders. It looks great, I am planning to keep mine to make again, for me it fit pretty nice overall --- worth another version.

  9. Love your top! you did a wonderful job.

  10. I LOVE this outfit. The shirt is sooo nice. It was worth all that time on pintucks! ANd the skirt is the perfect compliment. Bravo!


Thanks for commenting! I appreciate and read them all - even if I can not personally respond.


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