Sometimes there are days when all you want to wear is a big, comfy, slouchy tee. I have one such well-worn, rtw garment in my wardrobe but what to do when that one is in the wash??? Make another one of course. I couldn’t find a pattern that fitted the bill so drafted one based on the well-worn favourite. I used this lovely lightweight, grey and gold striped jersey that I found in the sale in Mandors in Glasgow. I love how the different tension of the gold thread stripes makes the fabric a bit wavy.
I traced off a pattern by laying out the rtw tee on top of some pattern paper, marking the centre front and back with pins and making sure the top was lying flat with seam lines matched, lying on top of one another and as straight as possible.
I drew the lines in with a pencil, tidying them up with a French curve where needed, and added in a 5/8″ SA all round the outside (except the neckline edge which I cut a binding piece for) front and back. I cut whole pieces for the front and back to make best use of the fabric.
The finished pattern pieces looked massive which was intentional (slouchy remember) and had a slight batwing and quite low dropped shoulders.
The construction process was really straightforward and all done on the sewing machine using a narrow zigzag stitch because I wasn’t at home (so no overlocker)-
- Shoulder seams first, I stablised the whole back shoulder seam with ribbon which was a good 24cm to the sleeve seam due to the dropped shoulders
- Cut a neckband piece 2″wide with the stripes running horizontally (on lengthwise grain). The neck opening measured 25cm front and 33cm at the front so 58cm +SA total. This jersey had very little stretch on the lengthwise grain so after a bit of experimenting the tee needed a 57cm neckband to lie flat before top stitching to hold the seam allowance in place. If I make this in a jersey with more stretch it would probably need to be shorter to get the same finish.
- Hand basted side and arm seams to get the stripes to match up before sewing them in one go.
- I also added thumb-hole cuffs using the same process I used in my stripy Tilly and the Buttons Agnes top. This time though the cuffs would have been really baggy if I’d made them square because the sleeves are quite wide so I cut them in a trapezium shape that narrowed towards the knuckles. I also left a 2″ thumbhole instead of 1.5″ since the whole top was a lot baggier than the Agnes so didn’t want fitted thumbholes.
Although I cut the pattern with a curved front and back hem, once I’d sewn it up I decided I wanted a slightly more exaggerated curve so I added ties to each side.
I cut a piece of fabric about 5″ long and pressed and basted it along all 4 edges.
Then placed it over the middle of each side seam with the wrong sides together and sewed down each side. I added a third line of stitching down the middle directly over the side seam. I sewed this line of stitching from the right side though so I could see that it was being sewn directly on top of the side seam. Basically I ended up with 2 channels on the inside, one either side of the side seam.
The ties were made with two layers of powermesh, red on the inside and grey on the outside. They were stitched together to give the tube a width of @3/8″, the SA trimmed to 1/4″ and then turned using a loop turner.
I tried it at 2/8″ to get the ties as narrow as possible but couldn’t get them turned.
After they were turned I threaded one side of each tie through the two channels of the casing, stitched the ends together and hid them inside the casing.
They can be tied up in a knot or just left loose.
I really like the shape the ties give to the sides. Next time I think will run the casing for about 8″ up the side though.
The hem is a bit wavy on this top. Most likely because I didn’t interface it- didn’t have any with me and I just needed that tee finished. I might still add a cuff to the bottom to remedy it but because the jersey is already quite wavy anyway it will most likely just be left.
I LOVE this tee- it’s just what I wanted, big, slouchy and very comfy. I like it as much… if not slightly more than the original. This pattern is a keeper!