A new post! 2 posts in one week! What is this productive madness?! I have a couple of makes that just need some finishing touches which will be written up soon but this is a quick make I finished last week.
I don’t often read magazines (I only buy them when there’s a good freebie!) but I did pick up issue 24 of Love Sewing magazine, and in the monthly column by Elisalex, of By Hand London fame, was a quick pattern hack for a super sweet petal sleeve. I’m normally a sleeveless top kinda girl as I can find some sleeves quite restrictive, but I thought that because of the split shaping on the sleeve this might add something to my wardrobe.
This turned out to be an almost completely free make, aside from thread. The instructions call for a top or dress pattern with a traditional set in sleeve – as I didn’t have a pattern that fit the brief I used the free Sorbetto top pattern from Colette patterns and slightly extended the shoulders. Sorbetto is a sleeveless pattern but I know I had a drafted sleeve for the Sewaholic Granville shirt that fit so I traced the sleeve head and stopped 2 inches down on the underarm seam for a short sleeve. The fabric, a mystery fibre blend from Birmingham Rag Market, cost just £1 for a metre on a recent trip with my mum and dad, and I figured I could try and squeeze a Sorbetto with short sleeves out with a bit of wriggling to fit the pieces on!
I had used the Sorbetto pattern previously here and here so I knew it (more or less) fit me, but I knew I needed to add a couple of inches to the pattern overall. Instead of adding half an inch to each side of the front and back pieces, I just stuck it down the middle, only to find once I’d cut out my pieces it was miles too big… Whoops! Because I had only bought 1 metre I knew I couldn’t re-cut so I just took a nice big tuck out of the front and back piece. Thankfully, because this is an irregular polka dot, the extra seams aren’t too obvious, but as there is a seam front and back I’m calling it a ‘design feature’. Nobody will ever know…
Construction wise, it was surprisingly easy to draft the sleeve shapes using the instructions in the tutorial, although in hindsight mine seem a little roomy. I like being able to lift my arms though so I don’t mind. I also didn’t do my normal swayback adjustment as I wanted this to be quite loose and comfy so there is a bit of pooling at the back waist, but I think the looseness works with the simple structural lines lines on the sleeve and centrefront and back seams. I did manage to sew the overlap in 2 different directions the first time and toyed with leaving like that but it looked a bit silly so I switched them both to overlapping towards the back. Across my back and shoulders looks a little too big still, so I am going to have a go at a narrow back adjustment and see if this improves it at all. I overlocked all seams and for the hems I just overlocked and turned over once for neatness. For the neckline I made some bias binding from the scraps and bound the neckline. I love cutting bias strips but I think I’m cutting the wrong width for the tape maker – if anyone has any tips please let me know in the comments!
Overall I’m really happy with this Sorbetto hack, and will definitely use the petal sleeve tutorial again. Maybe on a blouse instead of a woven top – that might look quite sweet!I’m still not done with my Granville shirt, although I do know have buttons (woo!) and I’m halfway through a pair of pyjama bottoms, but I do plan on at least tracing the pattern for Hayden’s Christmas Negroni shirt this week (which I still don’t have fabric for). Thankfully Hayden is being very patient – I can’t find the right shade of grey chambray or linen that I have in my head, so I might have to change my idea slightly. It’s a good job he’s not fussy!