This week I made a simple T-shirt out of a plain cotton knit. The pattern I used was Vogue 1363, a T-shirt designed by Sandra Betzina. This T-shirt has bust darts, and I though I would like to try making a darted T-shirt to see if it looked or felt better than an ordinary T. The neckline is a nice shape, the shoulders are narrow, and the armholes cut quite high - according to Ms. Betzina. I agree, I did not need to alter the neck or the shoulders, and the armholes feel good.
This is my wearable muslin - I had a scrap of cheap cotton knit lying around and there was just enough for this. The knit was something called Colorado cotton knit, from Spotlight. I got some of the end of this run of fabric for about $4 or $5 per metre, instead of $14.99.
I made version B, the plain top shown on the left of the pattern envelope. I cut size B bust and size A (smaller) from waist to hips. I shortened the sleeve and bodice pieces 1 inch along the L/S line. I also added a seam down the back - it's supposed to be cut on the fold, but I needed a seam in order to get the top out of the material I had.
I thought the dart looked generous, but not having made a knit T before was not sure of how it would place, sit or look, so I just made as per pattern. The neckline was faced - a very nice finish. I did find that the T was going to be a bit snug - the knit I used was quite firm, so instead of seaming at 5/8 inch, as per the pattern, I used my serger, effectively making the seams about 3/8 inch. This gave me the ease I wanted, although I thought the sleeves were still a bit snug on the upper arm - and my upper arms are hardly large. Probably the low stretch in the knit was affecting the fit. They are not too snug though.
I also turned under the facing edge - the pattern says to stitch down and then trim back. I don't like the raw edge look so I did it my way :)
The pattern has a huge amount left on for the hem, and you are supposed to trim away what you don't want. I removed 1 1/4 inch - and had already shortened 1 inch at the L/S line of course.
The darts were a little too long I discovered later - next time I will stop them about 1/2 to 3/4 inch back.
A few pictures - this one of the neck facing:
I also like to do a top stitch along the shoulder - I do a false felled seam - one layer flipped to the back of the shoulder over the trimmed seam. I stabilise the seam first with some interfacing (not seen when finished):
I even top -stitched the darts down - they looked fairly obvious, in a not attractive way, so I decided to make a feature of them. I also have placed a pin to show where I will need to stop the dart in the future - and that point is now transferred to my pattern, or I would forget :)
On me, this is what the top looks like:
It certainly is a nice little T-shirt and I see more of these being made in the future. I can also see more clearly were I need to alter the back of my garments - I need to take out the bit that overhangs my mid back at waist level. I won't be fiddling with making perfectly fitted tees for a while though - I am in urgent need of a few, and that takes priority over fitting the things at the moment. And they are only T-shirts, after all, not haute couture.
On that note I will leave you - Vogue 1363 - it is a nice pattern. And yes, finally, a pink top - it's lovely to have something bright in the wardrobe :)
Wishing you all the best, wherever you are,