Skip to main content

Made by a Fabricista: Sewing Pamela's Patterns with Ann

**If you've been thinking about the Pretty Peplum Top Sew Along, this is a great preview of what you will be making! Click HERE to learn more about the Sew Along, which will begin in February!**



I'm always a little perplexed when it comes to making alterations to patterns, and Pamela's Patterns advertises that their patterns already include the most common alterations, including high round back, forward shoulder, full bust option, extra hip/tummy room and a great fit in the neck and shoulder.  That sounded good to me!

So, I couldn't wait to try their newest patterns- #114- the Pretty Peplum Top and #115- the Softly Pleated Dress.  Here are my versions:



For both patterns, the first step- picking your size-asks you to choose your size based on your high bust measurement. Each pattern has two front pattern pieces- one with a dart, and one without. If there is more than a 3" difference between your full bust and high bust, she suggests using the darted front.  So, since my difference was right at 3", I decided to use the darted front for both. 



The pattern suggests good quality knit fabric, and emphasizes that you should stretch the fabric and make sure that it bounces back to its original length. If it doesn't, she says, don't use it. I chose two double knits from Fabric Mart- one was a cream lacy look, and the other a bright rose.  Both of these were firm knits and had excellent recovery after stretching.  

The pretty peplum top has both long and cap sleeve options, and a keyhole or scoop neckline.  I chose the scoop neckline with the long sleeves for this top.



The Softly Pleated Dress pattern includes a crew or square neckline, long or cap sleeves, and three different length options. I originally made mine the longer dress length, but it was way too much pink!    So, I shortened it to the tunic length. It's still pretty bright, but it should brighten up a drab winter day.



   I used the square neckline.  Here is what it looks like from the outside:



And this is what it looks like from the inside. You just make a tiny dart at the edges.  My fabric is a little too thick to flatten it out, but ideally, you would press these tiny darts flat. The directions encourage you to use Stay Tape for thinner, drapier knits, which would be a fantastic idea. These particular knits were quite firm, so I skipped that detail.



The back of the Pretty Peplum Top truly is pretty!  The peplum is not too full- just enough fullness to give you some shape.



You can see the back of the Softly Pleated Dress also has pleats to add a little back interest as well.


 
I liked the method Pamela has you finish the necklines on both tops. You press the seam allowance of the neckline seam towards the band, and then fold the raw edge of the band back over the seam allowance and stitch "in the ditch".  This gives the band a little filler so that it stands out more.  You then trim off the excess binding close to your stitching on the wrong side.




I made one change on the Softly Pleated Dress, and that was to add pockets.  I love having pockets to carry my phone.  I didn't want to use the double knit fabric for the pockets in case it would be too bulky, so I found a similar colored silk twill and just used an inseam pocket pattern from another dress.



I placed the top of the pockets three inches below the waistline seam in the side seams, and it is just right. You can see them from the inside here, as well as how the pleats are sewn in place.



Pamela also has You Tube fitting videos on these tops to guide you in making any adjustments to fit your own shape. I liked where the waist hit me on both of these tops, so I didn't change it, but she recommends basting in these seams until you can try them on and look in the mirror to check the fit.



I'm getting a small fold right above the bust on the Pretty Peplum Top, which Pamela suggested might be because my armhole is too long.  She does include shorten/lengthen lines on the front, back and sleeve for this alteration, so I will try that with my next version.  Overall, I'm really happy with both tops!  I think there are many great possibilities with both patterns, and can see using them quite a bit in my future sewing!

Happy Sewing!
Ann Brodsky
SewBaby News

Comments

  1. Ann, I love this! :) Obviously I am a fan of the softly pleated dress having just made it, but seeing the pretty peplum top it makes me want to join in on the sewalong!!!

    Thanks for reviewing these and furthering my love for Pamela's Patterns and double knits!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh and the tip for putting the pockets three inches down from the waist seam, must remember to do that on my next version of the softly pleated dress (or tunic).

      Delete
  2. Thanks for sharing, both tops look great! I especially like that you show the inside, it really helps.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I so enjoyed your finished tops and appreciate all your comments. I found out after making a knit muslin for the simple t-shirt, that I too needed to make a tuck above the bust and that helped immensely. Because of this I also tucked the cap of the sleeve. I will continue to use her patterns.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Thanks for leaving a comment! All comments are reviewed before posting to help us eliminate spam. Your comment will be posted within 24 hours.

Popular Posts You Might Like

Made by a Fabricista: Summer Sweater Knit

Hello Sewing Friends!  I hope all of you are safe, healthy, and feeling good about life in general.  These are crazy times we are living in!  
As I was debating what to make for my July blog post, I ran across a few garments made from lightweight sweater knits and decided to look through FMs selection.  I found this gorgeous black, white, and gray floral that I made my dress out of.  


It appears to be sold out right now, but here are some other great choices. Sweater knits  I like checking on FMs site on a frequent basis as their selection is updated often. 

I always seem to have my eyes closed in at least one photo!
For this post, however, I knew I wanted a summer, yet trans-seasonal garment since this fabric is just so lovely, soft, and I am such a sucker for floral prints that I wanted to wear this as much as possible.  Do you ever come across fabric and feel the same way?  


I didn't have to do anything special or out of the ordinary with this fabric.  I treated it just as any…

Made by a Fabricista: Maxi Looks for Summer

Happy Saturday All!!   This summer break seems to be flying by so quickly and I only have one month before I return to virtual teaching.  After parent surveys, union, and school board meetings our school district is returning to virtual teaching and learning next month.  The cases in Miami Dade County have surged over the last few weeks and with over 70K cases in the county where I teach, and a growing 300K + cases in Florida, I don’t even know when things will return back to normal due to COVID-19.
I have been heartbroken but the only thing I can appeal to others is to stay safe and wear your mask. I am blessed so far to have no immediate family member affected by this pandemic. It has been a tough year for most of us but I am pretty sure that this too shall pass.
Now let’s get into my summer sewing plans!!  Last month I selected 2 prints: a zebra chevron and an animal print and knew I wanted to make maxi looks for summer. Unfortunately, both challis prints are sold out but there are…