I had this finished before I started on the new pants pattern but didn’t have the post written. Was so excited about the pants pattern, I delayed until it was done. Nonetheless, I do want to document and share my beaded neckline.
Silhouette Patterns 195 has become my knit block. I am especially pleased with the last alteration which shifted the french dart to an armscye dart. I much prefer the armscye dart. I think it is easier to sew and more importantly I can use it to tweak the fit of my upper body — the pear-shaped part above the bust.
I thought my fabric was an ITY knit but the way it handled in several areas has me questioning if it was a 100% poly ITY. I mean ITY just means interlock twist yarns. They can do all kinds of things to it which makes a difference in how it handles and wears and still call it ITY. It is a recent acquisition for my stash selected this time because I thought it ‘went’ best with a beaded neckline I purchased off eBay. Whew, I’ve just been taken over by the laces and trims offered on eBay. I’ve never had such a wealth offered. Prices aren’t bad either but that’s not the important point.
This neckline piece is a combination of plastic ‘jewels’ stitched onto a tulle base. I assumed the beads and tulle base were to remain together. Meaning, I did not remove the beads and stitch them separately onto my neckline by hand. Of course the piece wasn’t as spectacular in person as it was on the internet. I expected that. These kind of beads never are and so I wasn’t disappointed. I did think the size was different. Please understand this was not the vendor’s fault. They listed the dimensions correctly. I visualized them incorrectly. Which meant I had some fast thinking to do if I wanted to use the piece as intended.
I started by cutting out my front piece straight across from shoulder point to shoulder point. IOW not cutting the neckline at all. I marked down about 6″ from the shoulder point and center front. Then I started shifting the neckline piece around trying to get it on the front in such a way I would simply cut the neck down from the shoulders. Couldn’t do it. Well I could if I wanted to leave the front neck totally unscooped. Not me. I don’t wear turtlenecks or high collars unless I will otherwise be naked. I studied and played. Shifted it up, back. Side to side. Finally I decided.
I used a self-fabric french binding around the lower edge and then pinned the top of the beaded piece to the front about 5.5″ below the shoulder point. Next I made tubes which finished about the same width as the french binding and placed them from shoulder extending down to the upper edge of the beaded piece. I made a tube that were twice as wide as those extending from the shoulder and placed it across the where the beaded piece met the previous tubes. Finally I trimmed out the neckline. After joining the back and front shoulders at the serger, I stitched a french binding around the entire neck edge. It looks good until you get really close. I didn’t get some of the tulle edges covered and my top-stitching was a bit sub-par. What I thought would be a quick, attractive neckline had turned into a 6 hour job. I was glad it was finished and that it looked as good as it did even if that wasn’t perfect.
I pulled my 1034 serger forward and made rolled hems along the bottom edge. Oh, I had cut the back and front hems slightly curved. I’ve seen that several times here recently and thought it would be a nice change without getting too much going on. I added the sleeves, stitched the long underarm/side seam and then hemmed the sleeve by turning up twice and top stitching 1/4″ from the top edge. Here again, I wondered about the ITY fabric. Usually, my Brother produces a beautiful top stitch on ITY by reducing the upper tension to 3.8. But I again have less than perfect top stitching on both sleeve hems. Ticked me off really bad because I ripped out and restitched both sleeves twice and 3 times.
I’m also a little surprised at the fit. Not disappointed but surprised that it seems to be a swing T with fullness at the hem instead of normal skim-the-hips T. Actually, I kind of like the extra ease, another current style trend I’ve been seeing. Possibly, I could have corrected this if I had taken fitting pics. But I’ve made 195 so many times, I didn’t even slow down once the neck was finished. I just zoomed through the rest.
So this is not a garment I’m thrilled with. The difficulty with the beaded piece and those few errors, plus the fuller-than-expected hem put a damper on my enthusiasm. But I’m not unhappy either. I think a short rest in the ‘magic closet’ and I’ll be fine.