March 11, 2014

Ottobre Tunic: Third Time's the Charm!

Usually, around the third time in a row that I sew-up a pattern I start to feel burnt out. Not so with this tunic. This charcoal-gray Ponte-knit with subtle sparkle was the fabric I had in mind for this tunic from the get-go. I wasn't burnt out sewing this one, I was excited! My favorite part by far is the pop of pink in the trim and top-stitching. We generally shy away from pink around these parts, but I'm a sucker for a bright-colored trim on a neutral solid.

Sewing the Princess Castle Tunic and Raglan Tee from Ottobre Design 4/2013 | The Inspired Wren
 Finally warm enough to get some pics outside, now I'm looking forward to a green background instead of brown.

Once again this is the Princess Castle Tunic, #14, from Ottobre Design issue 4/2013, Fall Kids. Once again I sewed it up at tunic length (there is also a dress length option that I have yet to make), but this time I chose the short/cap-sleeve option. Once again I changed the size I sewed. The first, too-large version I made was a size 104, then I tried a size 92 wide x 98 long, this time I went for a standard size 98. It works. But I think for the best room-to-grow fit I would need a size 98 wide x 104 long. Of course now I will continue to over-analyze what size I should make as I go forward with other patterns from Ottobre.

Sewing the Princess Castle Tunic and Raglan Tee from Ottobre Design 4/2013 | The Inspired Wren
The Ponte knit drapes perfectly for this pattern. And I STILL love those circle pockets.

Seriously. The pockets. They are fabulous.

Inspired by the styling in the magazine images, I made a Fall Basic Raglan-Sleeve T-Shirt, #12 (same issue), in size 98 to layer under the tunic. I originally purchased the stripe to use as leggings, but I like how it works on this shirt, too. I still love the idea of muli-width striped legs so I'm saving that concept for a future project.

Sewing the Raglan Tee from Ottobre Design 4/2013 | The Inspired Wren
Completely adorable on it's own, it will look fabulous over a pair of jeans or play pants.

I need to talk about those sleeve cuffs. First, in the magazine the hem hits higher up on the cuff, almost half-way. When sewing from Ottobre, you add the seam-allowances yourself as you trace the pattern. I didn't add seam-allowance to the bottom of the cuff because I thought I had read not to add seam-allowance for hems. But I think if I had added it then the proportions would match the intended pattern. Next time I'm going to give that a try. Also note that the sleeves have a loose, relaxed fit on The Peanut, yet look what happened to both sleeves after just one wear:

Sewing the Raglan Tee from Ottobre Design 4/2013 | The Inspired Wren
One wear, and the hems gave way.

This is my karma for claiming I had finally perfected twin-needle sewing. I got a great suggestion on Instagram from Alison J Prata O'Grady of Sew Bee It Clothier to try Wooly Nylon in the bobbin for additional stretch. It's a timely suggestion because I also just read about it over at Made By Rae. I will definitely be giving that a try. But I'm still perplexed that it happened on both loose-fitting sleeves and not on the neckline where I would have expected it. Ah well. I'll mend them.

I'm not yet burnt out on this pattern, however I am ready to move on. I'm very excited for Project Run and Play starting the last week of March. I'm going to attempt to sew-along (first time!) and I've got lots of plans and sketches for each of the weekly challenges already started. I'm also excited for Kids Clothes Week, Spring 2014. It falls right in the middle of Project Run and Play and I may even attempt to post here daily during that week. But what I'm most looking forward to is the warmer weather so we can throw open the windows and get out into the sunlight!

Sewing the Princess Castle Tunic and Raglan Tee from Ottobre Design 4/2013 | The Inspired Wren
Hurray Spring is coming!


Pattern

Ottobre Design, Issue 4/2013, #14 Princess Tunic, Design A Length plus Design B Sleeves; and #12 Fall Basic Raglan-Sleeve T-Shirts

Fabric

Tunic: Sew Classic Knits Ponte, Caviar; Sew Classic Knits Interlock, Sangria (all from Joann's Fabric)
Raglan Tee: Famous Makers Apparel Fabric, Fall Stripe Knit; Sew Classic Knits Interlock, Sangria (all from Joann's Fabric)

Love

The popping, bright-accent color on neutral. Always. Even when it's pink. It's especially striking without the striped shirt layered underneath; bring on the warm weather.

Note

I'm still struggling with the right size for a good fit with room to grow. It appears for the near future I should probably do Size X wide by Size X+1 long. At least when I'm sewing from Ottobre. I also need to go back and review the seam-allowance addition advice for hems--should I add it or not. But what I really need is for the snow and sick days to stop now. It's been weeks (no! a full month!) since I've had time to sew any outfit bottoms.


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You should really see all that goes into each project!
From my model preferring to wear washi tape on her belly button instead of the clothes I've sewn for her, to the ingenious way that I’ve re-purposed my favorite sewing tool, a chopstick, into a spool pin for double needle sewing on my machine. Daily updates on Instagram (and Flickr) of works-in-progress will give you that behind the scenes view you’re looking for, and sneak peeks of First Tuesday Tutorials, too.
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26 comments:

  1. Very cute! I do really like that tunic pattern. I have the same trouble with my double-needle hems; it happened on my Plantain tshirt hem (which is loose anyway) just from going through the wash. Frustrating.

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    1. Thanks. It is so very frustrating when the hems give, and so soon!

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  2. That dress is so great! I love the pockets and the pink binding! I always have trouble my double needle too - one day I am going to have to sit down and play with it until I figure it out.

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    1. It took me a lot of playing around to get the twin-needle to work. Initially I had threading issues despite having the sewing machine manual right in front of me. And then I think my first twin was too narrow -- the needles were too close together -- it would work on wovens but not knits. When I got a wider twin it finally started working. Now I need to get the Wooly Nylon for my bobbin. The learning never stops.

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  3. I love this outfit! it looks great. The colors are fabulous. I hear ya on the frustrations of the twin needle. I gave up, primarily because my girls would pull the stitches out after a few wearings! I have never tried Wooly Nylon in the bobbin but what I have started doing is using the stretch stitch (lightning bolt) and using my stitch in the ditch (top stitching foot) to sew two parrallel seams. Twice the work, looks great and wears great.

    I am going to be doing PRAP and KCW, too, so let's be in the crazy club together! hahaha!

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    1. I've used the stretch-stitch in the past. I was trying to get all professional-looking for the blog (sad-trombone). You can kind of see here on the PJ top I didn't bother with the twin-needle and just stuck with the stretch-stitch at the neck and hem. http://www.flickr.com/photos/theinspiredwren/12211162803/

      PRP & KCW are totally crazy-making, aren't they? I already broke out a paper calendar just to make sure the wheels don't spin-off the rest of my life while my head is down over the sewing machine and face-first in the computer. We'll do it together!

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  4. Hmmm I haven't given the twin needle a try yet but I'll consider myself warned! I'm planning on doing the PRP sew along at least one week too, I need to get busy!

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    1. I love the look of the twin-needle though. I'm going to soldier-on with making it work. Do you know which challenge of PRP you think you'll do? I actually have a bit of a block for the very first one, Take Me to the Zoo. Ugh.

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  5. So cute! I am determined to learn to sew with stretch fabrics this year - and so far the twin needle has defeated me (although to be perfectly honest, I've only tried it once!)

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    1. You can do it! Nothing to fear in sewing with stretch. I've sewed knits for a couple of year now, and I only recently started using the twin-needle. Sew your knits with the zig-zag or stretch stitch at first and then ease into the twin needle.

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  6. The additions of a serger and a twin needle to my sewing space changed my life! haha :) I am in love with that tunic, and the top stitching on those circle pockets. Oh my goodness. I haven't tried any Ottobre patterns, but I might need this one!

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    1. I dream of a serger. It's at the top of my wish-list these days. Also, I'm ready to marry the one issue of Ottobre I have; everyone should sew at least one pattern from there.

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  7. Such a cute outfit!! I am both scared and in love with my serger. Once you get one you will be head over hills in love. I am eyeing getting an Ottobre issue. I have a lot of Burdas but never get any use out of them but these patterns look like they would get made over and over.

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    1. I'm seriously contemplating a series over the summer of sewing every pattern from one issue that would currently fit. I really like it THAT much.

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  8. This is so cute! I love the colors! I'm hoping to sew along with PR&P this year too!! I doubt that I'll try to keep up with it AND Kids Clothing Week though.

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    1. The goal of KCW is just to sew one-hour per day. I figure I'll be doing that anyway for PR&P so I may as well document it and share it with each group!

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  9. Adorable! I always liked sewing for my children!

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    1. I've said it before, I'll be very sad when she outgrows enjoying what I sew for her.

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  10. Such a cute tunic and the colors are so fun. Your daughter is adorable.

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    1. Thanks! She's really taken to being my model. It's fun for both of us right now.

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  11. I adore these pockets! Congrats! You are featured on this week's Do Tell Tuesday link party and have been pinned to our features board! Feel free to grab a button and link up this week too. :) http://www.vintagezest.com/2014/03/do-tell-tuesday-15-with-features-50.html

    Diane @ Vintage Zest

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  12. Awww she looks so precious! That looks really warm and snuggly! Thanks for sharing it on Snickerdoodle Sunday.

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  13. Very pretty. I love the combination and the pockets. Ottobre has such lovely designs. Thanks for linking it to the Sew Book Inspired series :) - Diya

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    1. Thanks for hosting a great series!

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