I had a few days away from home. (Check up with my physician who gave me a thumbs up on my recent surgery.) Being gone gave me time to think over my experience with Connie Crawford’s Basic Knit Tops pattern B5215. In retrospect, this pattern deserves another chance. I was sidetracked trying to keep the back pulled down. Spent a lot of time (4 fittings) trying to figure out why it would not hang correctly. Like LindaT, I think it was the fabric. When I consider carefully my issues with this pattern are
A front bust dart triying to form
Swag/U drapes on the side
and perhaps related to the swags, lines on the back of the sleeves.
I turned my attention first to the sleeves. I’ve never experienced this particular issue. Usually, I have a drag line on the front. Not these diagonal lines. I was perplexed and did a search. Which turned up nothing specific to my issue but did bring me an excellent PDF by Linda Lee on fitting the sleeve. I won’t repeat all the information she shared. Do follow the link and read it for yourself. I first checked the bicep girth. I had noted that the sleeve felt tight. I measured my bicep (14″) then measured the sleeve girth (16″). That should be fine. Next I measured the pattern sleeve cap and armscye. Sleeve cap was 21″, armscye 19″. OK there is more sleeve cap than armscye. There is more ease. But why would all the ease hang vertically on just the backside of the of the sleeve? I decided to follow Peggy’s Sager’s advice to “know your numbers”. I located a T-shirt whose sleeve and armscye I liked. It measured 21″ (both armscye and sleeve cap). Since I liked that T, I decided to trim out the underarm following Connie Crawford’s fitting instructions. I trimmed twice from underarm to notches on both the front and back pattern pieces until I had achieved 21″ for both.
Then it was time to test. OK I also worked on wonky hem, but let’s save that for another post. I selected a new fabric. What a chore. I was looking for another 100% rayon jersey with 30% stretch. I want a light-colored fabric because it’s easier to identify the fitting issues. I have nothing meeting all 3 criteria. Finally I decide upon a rayon + Lycra jersey. This fabric is a little slicker, less clingy than the 100% rayon and stretches a bit more, 35%. It’s also a little heavier, just enough that I can tell it is not the same weight fabric. It’s a fabric I ordered on-line; didn’t look quite as I had imagined but I kept it thinking of nice PJ’s. Today, it made a nice knit-top muslin that I may actually wear.
Can you believe that all the underarms swags are gone? I’ve had this issues numerous times. I never realized that the underarm was too shallow. I’m thinking of several lovely blouses I reluctantly donated because I didn’t know how to fix the swags.
The sleeve is improved and I’ll talk about that in a future post. For now, color me Tickled Pink not only have I fixed this pattern, I now know what to do in the future.
Sleeve Back Sleeve Front