Dolman Pattern Review: The Easy Breezy Summer Tee

Dive Into DolmansFor my last stop along the Dolman Tour I chose a  Nap Time Creations pattern because of the company’s name. After all, anything that can be made during nap time has to be fast and easy, right? I’m also off on vacation soon and the thought of an ‘Easy Breezy Summer Tee‘ was right up my street. The pattern doesn’t have options but is reasonably priced; there are also several free patterns in her shop and on the website. The designer, Emily, states it’s meant to be loose and worn over a camisole, and can be made with a woven or knit fabric. I have a loosely woven gauzy fabric that has sat in my stash for years and it called my name asking to be sewn up before it rotted away. It’s light enough to allow me to tan, but it will filter enough rays to prevent sun burn.


True to my thoughts the pattern was pretty fast to make. I did lengthen it by 2″ and I sized down to a large. I had a bit of a blonde moment and cut the front as a U, rather than a V. It still looks pretty though. I like the finishing details of binding the neck seams and attaching a sleeve cuff. It’s the difference between a hastily sewn garment and a more professional finish.


Even making this in a woven fabric and sizing down, it’s still large. If you want something  more fitted I’d advise making a muslin or measuring the pattern pieces to ensure you get the size you want; especially if making this in a knit! It does have a place in my summer wardrobe though; It’s ideal for wearing with capri pants in the heat. I fish and swim, and having an airy cover-up to protect me from burning is hugely important.

Lastly, many thanks to Nap Time Creations for donating the pattern. I truly appreciate it! 

Here’s the info sheet:

Sizes  XXS – XXl (30” – 50” chest)
Printable pattern pages/copy shop version  Printable only
Skill Level  Easy
Measurements for Rectangle Pieces  Neck band
Line Drawings  No
Size made  Large
Options chosen  No options
Fabric Requirement for your size  1.5 yards
Measurement Chart  Yes
Cutting Instructions  Yes
Pattern Printing Layout  Yes
Cutting Layout  No
Suggested Fabrics  Woven with good drape OR knit
Layer Printing Option  No
Neck Line Options  No
Sleeve Options  No
Hem Options  No
Color Blocking  No
Seam Allowance  3/8”
Hem Allowance  ¾”
Separate add-on pack  No
Fit  Very loose
Easy to read instructions  Yes
Drawing or photograph instructions  Clear photographs

Here’s the link to ALL of the posts in the Dolman Tour. If you’re a Dolman lover, there’s bound to be something appealing. Thanks for reading along and humouring me

Diving Into Dolmans Week 1

Sewing By Ti- Sew Much ado Sea Farer

Creative Counselor- Sewing Cake’s The Tee

Sew Sophie Lynn- Patterns for Pirates Pumpkin Spice

Made By Melli- Patterns for Pirates Sweet Tee

Guest blogger: Rebel and Malice- Jalie Dolman #3352

Diving Into Dolmans Week 2

Sewing By Ti- Create Kids Couture Donna’s Dolman

Creative Counselor- Blue Dot Patterns Georgia

Sew Sophie Lynn- EYMM Kymy’s Dolman

Made By Melli- Love Notions La Bella Donna

Guest bloggers: Rebel and Malice- Kzjo Poppy

Adventures with Bubba and Bug- Little Kiwi’s Closet Take Flight Dolman

Diving Into Dolmans Week 3

Sewing By Ti- Peekaboo Sunkissed Tee

Creative Counselor- Seamwork Aberdeen

SewSophieLynn– Hey June Aurora

Made by Melli-Peekaboo Sunkissed Tee

Guest Bloggers: Sew Far North – EYMM Assymetrical Top

Adventures with Bubba and Bug- Seamingly Smitten Dolman Sleeve Sweater with Assymmetrical Collar

Dos Natural Sistas- Hey June Aurora

Diving Into Dolmans Week 4

Sewing by Ti: Jalie #3352 Dolman

Creative Counselor: Maria Denmark Olivia Oversized Tee

SewSophieLynn- Itch to Stitch Carey

Made by Melli – Shwin Day Tripper

Guest Blogger: Sew Far North – Seamingly Smitten Women’s Dolman Sleeve Sweater

Mahlica Designs: Fancy Tiger One Hour Top

Diving Into Dolmans Week 5

Sewing By Ti: Patterns for Pirates Pumpkin Spice

Creative Counselor: EYMM Natasha

SewSophieLynn- Tessuti Mandy Boat Tee

Made by Melli – Maria Denmark Kimono Tee

Guest bloggers: Sew Far North – Nap Time Creations Easy Breezy Summer Tee

Lulu & Celeste: Shwin Day Tripper

 

 

Pattern Review: Women’s Dolman Sleeve Sweater

Dive Into Dolmans

 

It’s now week 4 of the Dive into Dolman’s Tour and I am back with my second creation. Its a pattern by Seamingly Smitten. I haven’t made any of their patterns before and a part of me wished I’d just made a couple of their Dolmans in order to compare them. There is a website, a blog and an active Facebook Page (I’ll be following that in future). What appealed to me about this pattern is that it is designed for heavier knits, and it has an asymmetrical neckline. I live in the chilly mountain climes , and despite writing this while in the California Desert (don’t start me off about the heat!), I live in cool weather clothing most of the year. Or at least it feels that way! I’m also partial to a top that finishes below elbow and as such, was attracted to the modelled photos. 13076711_10207828013793125_5140605154639820867_n

Like my previous pattern choice this one called for a fabric with good drape. I chose a sumptuous purple medium weight cotton polyester lycra knit fabric. It washes wonderfully and feels so soft; like wearing a light blanket. One thing to remember is that the neckline is slightly lower at the front than the back. Don’t be a dufus like me and wear it backwards several times, wondering why the heck it wasn’t comfortable and didn’t sit right at all! I have recently ordered labels and when they arrive I will sew one in to remind me which side goes to the back of my neck! I’m also improving making tops that drape well for my hourglass figure, and this one is more flattering than its boxy shape led me to believe.

I really liked how the asymmetrical neck is created. It is a bit quirky, just like me! I found the sleeves to be quite wide. I think they’ll either be a cooling agent in the warmth or encourage drafts. Either way, they took a bit of getting used to. I think if I followed the pattern line to extend them to wrist length (not a pattern option, but not a difficult hack), they would narrow nicely. A narrow cuff would then finish the sleeve off. It’s in my notebook for when I make it again. I cheated a bit and used my trusty knit tape to create the hems. It gives a lovely finish and (if I could be bothered) would look great with a twin needle hem stitch.

That said, the pattern has clear instruction with visual aids. Its an easy pattern to make and is wonderfully comfortable. It is also currently on for 50% off, so hop on over and grab it while you can!

Note: Seamingly Smitten kindly gave me the pattern for this blog tour – but they haven’t a clue what I made or what my review states. I thank them for their faith in me! 

Underneath is a link to all the bloggers and their blog posts. The table that follows has information on each pattern on the tour. I hope you enjoy reading the posts as much as we enjoy writing!

Diving Into Dolmans Week 1

Sewing By Ti- Sew Much ado Sea Farer

Creative Counselor- Sewing Cake’s The Tee

Sew Sophie Lynn- Patterns for Pirates Pumpkin Spice

Made By Melli- Patterns for Pirates Sweet Tee

Guest blogger: Rebel and Malice- Jalie Dolman #3352

Diving Into Dolmans Week 2

Sewing By Ti- Create Kids Couture Donna’s Dolman

Creative Counselor- Blue Dot Patterns Georgia

Sew Sophie Lynn- EYMM Kymy’s Dolman

Made By Melli- Love Notions La Bella Donna

Guest bloggers: Rebel and Malice- Kzjo Poppy

Adventures with Bubba and Bug- Little Kiwi’s Closet Take Flight Dolman

Diving Into Dolmans Week 3

Sewing By Ti- Peekaboo Sunkissed Tee

Creative Counselor- Seamwork Aberdeen

SewSophieLynn– Hey June Aurora

Made by Melli-Peekaboo Sunkissed Tee

Guest Bloggers: Sew Far North – EYMM Assymetrical Top

Adventures with Bubba and Bug- Seamingly Smitten Dolman Sleeve Sweater with Assymmetrical Collar

Dos Natural Sistas- Hey June Aurora

Diving Into Dolmans Week 4

Sewing by Ti: Jalie #3352 Dolman

Mahlica Designs: Fancy Tiger One Hour Top

Creative Counselor: Maria Denmark Olivia Oversized Tee

SewSophieLynn- Itch to Stitch Carey

Made by Melli – Shwin Day Tripper

Guest Blogger: Sew Far North – Seamingly Smitten Women’s Dolman Sleeve Sweater

 

Sizes  XS – 3XL (0-26)
Printable pattern pages/copy shop version  Printable at home
Skill Level  Beginner
Measurements for Rectangle Pieces  Yes
Line Drawings  No, just photos (but good ones)
Size made  XL
Options chosen  Cut to the tall hem length
Fabric Requirement for your size  2 yards
Measurement Chart  Yes
Cutting Instructions  Yes
Pattern Printing Layout  Yes
Cutting Layout  Yes
Suggested Fabrics  Medium to heavy  weight knit, sweater knit, ponte, or similar
Layer Printing Option  No
Neck Line Options  No
Sleeve Options  No
Hem Options  No
Color Blocking  Collar binding only (could do collar tho)
Seam Allowance  3/8″
Hem Allowance  1″
Separate add-on pack  No
Fit  Pretty Good
Easy to read instructions  Yes
Drawing or photograph instructions  Photographs

Dolman Pattern Review: EYMM Asymmetrical Drape Top

Dive Into DolmansIts Dolman time and I am part of a five week blog tour on Dolman tops, and how they work (or not) on different body shapes. I am a child of the 70’s and yes, in the 80’s I wore those big Dolman sweaters. To suddenly step outside my comfort zone and make a pattern I never felt very comfortable in to begin with was, well, a bit unsettling. As such I turned to EYMM’s Asymmetrical Drape Top for my first pattern. I must admit that the point of this tour is to work out  whether different patterns suit our body shapes, and if not, what we can do about it. My body shape is pretty much hour glass. There is 2″ difference between my full bust and my hips. I seem to be working my way towards an apple shape, but I am trying not to as I like myself this way. I feel that women with hourglass figures generally have flatter stomachs. It might be an optical illusion from the waist to hip curve, but that’s my thought anyway.

But onto the pattern! Like all EYMM patterns this top printed and was put together easily. I’m obviously improving in the whole print ‘n’ stick process! I chose this particular pattern as I like EYMM patterns generally, and I liked the modelled view. I don’t like round necklines or boxy shapes, as I feel the round necklines do nothing for my larger bust, and  boxy shapes make me look like a Sherman tank: I avoid both if I can! Interestingly, Essence, another blogger, is pretty much the same shape and loves Dolmans for their hide-all capacity. Her reviews can be found in the permalink section at the bottom.

The pattern is just two pieces and has two views; I made view A. In retrospect I should have made view B as it is a bit more shaped. I chose a lightweight polyester knit with good drape. EYMM has a section in the pattern on how to check the fabric drape: it’s really useful.
This top is asymmetrical and can be worn pulled down as a tunic to showcase the hemline, or pulled up to sit wherever you like. Sadly, the photos don’t do justice to the fantastic drape on the right side. I tend to wear leggings and I like coverage to my thighs. As a wise woman once said: “if you are wearing leggings or tights then cover your tail”. With jeans I can wear it higher on the hips; that’s the beauty of having a fabric that drapes well! I added 2″ to the overall length, and had intended adding the hip band. I found the top to be long enough for my 5’8″ frame, without the band. Unless your torso is 2″ longer than normal you could pass on adding any extra length.
It took me a while to like the neckline, after all Dolmans are well out of my comfort zone. When I make it again I’d like to include a back lace panel and make the front neckline scooped or with a V, as these lines accentuate and flatter a larger bust.
This is an ideal top for those days when I want to cover it all up though.
All the Dolman reviews contain the following information, allowing the readers to compare the patterns.
Note: EYMM donated the pattern for the tour. Thank you! The sewing is all my own work. My opinions and the review are entirely my own. 
Sizes XS – 5X
Printable pattern pages/copy shop version Pattern pages
Skill Level Beginner
Measurements for Rectangle Pieces Yes, for optional hip band
Line Drawings Yes
Size made XL
Options chosen A
Fabric Requirement for your size 1.5
Measurement Chart Yes
Cutting Instructions Yes
Pattern Printing Layout Yes
Cutting Layout Yes
Suggested Fabrics Knitted fabric with minimum 30% stretch and good drape
Layer Printing Option No
Neck Line Options No
Sleeve Options No
Hem Options Yes, optional hip band
Color Blocking No
Seam Allowance 3/8″
Hem Allowance 1/2″
Separate add-on pack No
Fit Pretty good. Long.
Easy to read instructions Absolutely!
Drawing or photograph instructions Both

Swinging my Way into a Capsule!

I recently started making Everything Your Mama Made & More (EYMM) clothes despite owning a few of the patterns for a while. When the opportunity came along to participate in the latest blog tour for their Capsule Skirt I jumped at it. Or at least my fingers did; They were all over the keyboard in their haste to see if EYMM would choose me to be part of their team. Yay! I made the grade, was sent the pattern and decided to have some fun with this sweet little skirt. I nearly wrote cute, which the skirt is, but at my age I’m beyond being called cute. I’m not going to rave about the designer, Kymy, or the patterns as I did that on my post about their Harem Pants. Scroll back through and have a good read, or just click on the link, eh! I must mention that EYMM give great coupon codes. There is one for the skirt (for all ages) at the bottom of this post.

Like the other patterns I’ve made the fit is true to form and the instructions are concise with visual pictures for help. I’m a fan of black and white line diagrams and the picture showing what the pattern pieces should look like when stuck together is invaluable. I like that the ladies’ sizes are split between XS – XL, and 1X – 5X on separate printer settings. It is an easy pattern to cut out and put together. It has several length and coverage settings, including a maternity one, and I decided to add the longer length on the back. Yes, I feel I have a big bum, but I didn’t need it for the extra coverage; I just like the swooping look of a high low hem.

I also must admit to not liking hemming knits, despite having my trusty Pellon knit hem tape to hand. As such, I added a bit of flirty lace. I feel it ties the fabric colours together and it makes me smile.

I initially used a white rib knit for the waistband but it didn’t have the stretchy recovery that yoga type waistbands need despite its lycra content, and I worried it would fall down. So I cut it off and, as Fagan would say, “… I think I’d better think it out again”. I’ve been struggling with these stretchy, good recovery fabrics and now own 6 different ones. The problem is that despite stretching the fabrics in the store, their stretchability changes after washing. I’ve now decided I am buying online from someone who knows what they are talking about. Perhaps I will have better luck?

You can’t see the waistband’s end result but I used a 20% lycra fabric and it seems to hold it all up nicely; no baring my knickers this time! I felt confident enough to have a bit of a swish for photos. Believe me, with a half circle skirt and a light knit fabric, it’s a great skirt to swing about in. I think that this skirt is a great one for those of us with hips. After all, a flick of the hips and the shay shaying begins! I plan taking it on holiday to the warmer weather soon; I just wish I had the time to make more before I go.

I’d planned sunny weather photos, but it was 1.5c today and snowing: the ski hill I live on had 8cm of fresh snow last night. No wonder I need some sun. With my next capsule skirts I’d like to add a bit of a petticoat underneath to give them fullness. Perhaps as a winter skirt? That gives me lots of time to make another few.

Thanks for reading! Have a good week now

Thank you to EYMM for giving me the pattern to make. I do appreciate that! 

2016-Capsule-Skirt-Tour-web

Make sure to check out all the other stops on the EYMM Capsule Skirt Tour. (Note: The links won’t be live until the day they’re scheduled, but feel free to click through and check out the other blog posts any time.)

Wednesday, April 6

Connected by a Thread, Sugarplum Cuties, The Wholesome Mama

Thursday, April 7

Sew Far North, Lulu & Celeste, Pattern Revolution

Friday, April 8

SewSophieLynn, Welcome to our Crazy World, EYMM

Saturday, April 9

handcrafted by RED, Pretty and Precious, Capture, Craft, and Cook

Sunday, April 10

create3.5, Sewing the Seasons, HattieLu Handmade

Monday, April 11

Creative Counselor, Rebel & Malice, Blessed x 5

Don’t forget to pick up your copy of the pattern while it’s on sale! Use coupon code PERFECTSKIRT to save 25% on the Women’s Capsule Skirt, Girl’s Capsule Skirt, or Capsule Skirt Bundle until April 12 at 11:59pm PST.

Easter Treats aren’t just Chocolate!

It’s hard to be excited about pretty Easter dresses when you live on a ski hill. Added to which it’s an El Nino winter, which means mild (for us) temperatures and buckets of snow. Heck, It’s been snowing for 10 hours today! As the spring flowers aren’t poking through the snow yet I thought I’d make a dress that has been on my mind for a while. Its pretty, I like the style and, it might just cover the end of winter extra weight that has become far too attached to me.

I bought George & Ginger’s ‘Ginger Dress‘ a while ago, but like most things, hadn’t got round to printing it off, let alone sewing it up. The pattern is sized from XXS – 2X, and drafted for a woman of 5’6″ height. It has a layers option, allowing just the sizes you need to be printed off. Another attraction is that it’s available in A0 format, so my trusty printer did the hard work for me. Bargain! After I printed it off it sat in the patterns bucket until this Blog Tour came along, when it jumped up pleading to be made.

Somehow, hitting 50 years old has affected my waistline; it went on vacation and hasn’t returned. Ho Hum …  So, I thought, why not make a flowy, swingy dress and pretend I am five years old again. I chose a bright knit fabric to cheer me through the last of winter with a contrasting knit trim. The dress is a proper handkerchief dress and takes a lot of fabric, but as the L’Oreal advert keeps reminding me I’m worth it. There is also a child’s version, called the Ginger Snap. Cute, eh?

George & Ginger Pattern Co. has an active FaceBook page and an Etsy Shop. The patterns cater to womanly shapes. Don’t get me wrong, they look good on women of all shapes and sizes but their clothes do flow nicely over womanly figures … all of them … especially mine!

On the FaceBook page a wonderful woman had altered the dress to fit closer at the bust, resulting in less volume. I followed her principle by measuring down an extra 3″before swinging out to meet the pattern piece, meaning my dress is semi fitted almost to the empire line before all that volume starts. The end result gives a bit more shape and is flattering. Having looked at several photos on the FaceBook page I also added 6″ to the dress length (above the trim). I wanted the option to wear the dress on our warm spring days without leggings or tights and somehow wearing a knitted dress that finished above my knees just wasn’t working for me. I have worn it in town, where the temperature can be up to 10℃ warmer and my extra length works well for me.

I like the fact that it swings and flows nicely. I think it runs a little large but this kind of dress is meant to flow over the body, not cling to it. On those ‘not so confident body days’ it seems to smooth and hide the unwanted lumpy, bumpy bits. Overall I recommend the pattern, and look forward to making the tunic length. Lastly, while the weather prevented good photo opportunities, this dress allows me to twirl away to my hearts content. I love that I can swing in it; it will be great to dance and shake my booty in.

Disclaimer: This blog post contains my opinions and I used my own pattern. No reimbursement has been made for featuring the Ginger Dress in my blog. 

Please check out the other writers in this Easter Blog Tour
3/28/16: Larissa from Connected By A Thread
3/28/16: Linda from Sew Happily Ever After
3/28/16: Amy from Wally and Grace
3/29/16: Cindy from Cindy Parrett
3/30/16: Ula from Lulu & Celeste
3/30/16: Fenna from FABulous Home Sewn
3/31/16: Courtney from the WHOLESOME mama
4/1/16: Patricia from Sew Far North
4/1/16: Tibeca from Sewing By Ti