Red Merino Aomori Twist Top

June 25, 2017   /   byFiona Parker  / Categories :  Feeds
The new Sakura collection from Papercut Patterns had me weak at the knees when it was released earlier this month. I was seriously resenting the fact that a very busy month at work was going to give me limited to no sewing time! Knowing that I wasn't going to be getting around to making much any time soon I restrained myself to just the one purchase, the Aomori Twist Top. The concept of this design is similar to their Bowline Sweater which I made in a linen knit last year and absolutely adore. It's a relaxed fitting top/sweater that thanks to some interesting construction has a unique detail in the twist at the centre front. These kind of simple designs, with clean lines but a striking and unusual feature somewhere in them really appeal to me. They fit my wardrobe needs being infinitely wearable dressed up or down and suit a wide range of fabric choices.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Red Merino Aomori Twist Top from Papercut Patterns

The proof of how strongly I was taken with this design is in the fact that I managed to get it sewn up (and now photographed and blogged!) despite barely being at home for the last three weeks. After some long work hours and a stint away I was delighted to find myself with a peaceful evening in ahead of me last night...and what better way to spend it than with a glass of wine and my sewing machine!

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Red Merino Aomori Twist Top from Papercut Patterns

The sleeveless version of the top can be made with either a woven or knit fabric but the sleeved version cut only be made using a knit. I opted for another piece of beautiful merino from The Fabric Store. Let's face it, whenever I get the chance to work with and wear some of this stuff at the moment I'm taking it! I just adore the vibrant colours available plus it washes (delicate 30 degree machine cycle) and wears so well. This is their standard 200gsm single jersey in Marsala from the premium merino range and has a lovely drape to it which would be suitable for most knit garments. For the twist front of this design you don't want anything too bulky. The colour choice is a little unusual for me as I don't tend to wear a lot of red but over the last year or so my most successful projects tend to have made use of warm, bold, solid colours so I went with my gut and think this is going to be a great addition to my somewhat black, neutral and green casual wardrobe. I think it helps that is quite a warm red with a pinkish tinge which suits my colouring much better than a brash brick or primary red. It looks much pinker in the flat photos than it does in reality!

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Red Merino Aomori Twist Top from Papercut Patterns

The construction looks like it would be confusing or complex but it's actually extremely straightforward. The two front panels slot together when the majority of the top has been constructed leaving just the side seam to close. It was extremely satisfying to see it all come together. It was the perfect project to ease myself back into the swing of sewing when my brain was tired as it only took a couple of hours but the new to me order of construction required to achieve that twist front meant I needed to focus. I find sewing so soothing when I've got a lot going on as it's so calming to fix your thoughts on just the one thing and switch off from everything else buzzing round in my brain! The merino is of course gorgeous to work with so it was a hassle free project from start to finish.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Red Merino Aomori Twist Top from Papercut Patterns

The pattern is labelled as suitable for 'skilled' sewers on the Papercut difficulty scale and I think and understanding of how a garment comes together would help the process but there's nothing too complex for an advanced beginner to tackle. The trickiest part is probably the binding which runs all the way around the neckline, through the centre of the twist and around the hem in a large loop. It requires some accuracy and patience and I would recommend selecting a fabric which responds well to pressing and can hold a crease as this will help hugely to achieve a neat and even finish. I'm delighted with how mine has turned out. I've not used this binding method on a knit garment before and it's a lovely little touch that seems a step up from a classic band or turned and twin needled hem.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Red Merino Aomori Twist Top from Papercut Patterns

The only problem I encountered was with the overlocked edge on one side of the twist front wanting to peek out to the right side once everything was assembled. I had used black overlocking thread so this wasn't ideal and no matter how many times I tried to encourage it to twist inside it seemed to come back out. Fortunately this only seems to happen when the top is flat as once worn everything hangs just perfectly. I was also concerned that the weight of the fabric in the twist might encourage the front of the top to pull forward from the shoulder but it sits in place nicely which is testament to the quality of the drafting.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Red Merino Aomori Twist Top from Papercut Patterns

I cut the size XS which is one up from the smallest in the Papercut size range. I'm a pretty much exact match for that size except a couple of inches larger in the hip. I thought I could get away with it this time as it's a relaxed fit knit style but I could probably do with a little more room over the bum as it tends to ride up as I move then sit just above the hip rather than hanging down as in the sample pictures. The top does require a little more fabric than you may expect as there are some quite large and unusually shaped pattern pieces as you can see in the picture below! I did however get away with using a fair bit less than the recommended amount; I reckon I used around about 1.25m at 132cm wide.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Red Merino Aomori Twist Top from Papercut Patterns

The neckline does plunge down quite low but it doesn't feel revealing at all because of the way the fabric lays over the chest and dips down into the twist. I feel very comfortable and at ease in it; in fact when I tried it on for the first time I kept it on for the next hour while I was tidying up as it just felt so very me straight away. The only change I might make is to slim down the arms slightly as my personal preference is for a tighter sleeve but the dropped shoulder and volume in the upper arm balances out nicely with the twist front and I do feel very comfortable in this with the sleeves pushed up as in the photos.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Red Merino Aomori Twist Top from Papercut Patterns

Because of the way the hem curves up into the front twist the top does need too be worn with a high waisted trouser/skirt/short but I also think this would be a great unusual outer layer to throw on over dresses and jumpsuits when the temperature takes a dip in the evening. I love it with jeans and trainers as worn here but also think in this rich solid colour it could have an effortless glamour too.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Red Merino Aomori Twist Top from Papercut Patterns

I'll definitely be making a sleeveless version and I'm even tempted to get it cut out tonight as I have a fine piece of black viscose jersey lurking in my stash which I think would be perfect for it. I might treat myself to the paper version of another of the new Papercut designs too but at the moment I'm torn between the dramatic contemporary shape of the Nagoya Pants and the beautiful back of the Kobe Dress/Top. I've seen a lot of love for the Sapporo Coat on social media; which of the new designs has most taken your fancy?

This is a syndicated post. Please visit the original author at Diary of a Chain Stitcher

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Simplicity 8105

A quick post about a quick tee I made for Liddy.The Simplicity 8105 I saw this pattern on Lara’s instagram and thought it was perfect for my girls too.I sewed up the largest size (a 14 I think) in a stretchy cott…

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#ebonyTee – just two more (for now)

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The Buying a House Blouse


Hello, everyone!  It’s been quite a while since I have posted anything.



The main reason for my online disappearance is the fact that I am now a homeowner!  That process has kept me rather busy, and the move, etc., has not left much time for sewing, let alone blogging.  I was actually without internet for a couple of weeks which was rather refreshing.


Of course, I wanted to make a new outfit for the occasion, but there was not a lot of free time prior to closing.  But I was determined!  


I have been wanting to make this blouse for years.  I often pull out scraps of fabric along with the pattern, hoping that I can squeeze out an entire garment, but it never has worked for me.  Until now!


The leftovers from this skirt and this dress were tucked away in a drawer, and while the dye lots do not match, I think I managed to make it work.  The neck tie was made with the leftovers from the skirt, and the rest of the blouse (which is a slightly more pigmented and heavier weight cotton) was cut from the remains of the dress.  There were quite a few people who thought that the look was actually a dress, so I guess the difference is not terribly obvious.


These photos were taken about an hour after signing all of the paperwork (in my old neighborhood).  I was exhausted, but very happy.


I really began looking in earnest over a year ago, so it was a huge relief to finally be done.


It has been quite an adventure, and my new living space is still not “finished,” but Valentino and I are definitely settling in, and I am finally getting back into a routine – one that will definitely include many more sewing adventures!



Blouse:  Made by me, Butterick 4985

Skirt:  Made by me, Butterick 4792
Shoes:  Born “Kharen”

read more

What to Pack For a Day at the Beach With a Toddler

It’s not summer to me until we’ve been to the beach. Being by the water has always been so restful and healing for my soul. The older I get, the more of a beach gal I seem to become. I’m happy to report that Piper shares my love of the water and has loved the […]

The post What to Pack For a Day at the Beach With a Toddler appeared first on Love Lola | A Life & Style Blog.

read more

Red Merino Aomori Twist Top

June 25, 2017   /   byFiona Parker  / Categories :  Feeds
The new Sakura collection from Papercut Patterns had me weak at the knees when it was released earlier this month. I was seriously resenting the fact that a very busy month at work was going to give me limited to no sewing time! Knowing that I wasn't going to be getting around to making much any time soon I restrained myself to just the one purchase, the Aomori Twist Top. The concept of this design is similar to their Bowline Sweater which I made in a linen knit last year and absolutely adore. It's a relaxed fitting top/sweater that thanks to some interesting construction has a unique detail in the twist at the centre front. These kind of simple designs, with clean lines but a striking and unusual feature somewhere in them really appeal to me. They fit my wardrobe needs being infinitely wearable dressed up or down and suit a wide range of fabric choices.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Red Merino Aomori Twist Top from Papercut Patterns

The proof of how strongly I was taken with this design is in the fact that I managed to get it sewn up (and now photographed and blogged!) despite barely being at home for the last three weeks. After some long work hours and a stint away I was delighted to find myself with a peaceful evening in ahead of me last night...and what better way to spend it than with a glass of wine and my sewing machine!

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Red Merino Aomori Twist Top from Papercut Patterns

The sleeveless version of the top can be made with either a woven or knit fabric but the sleeved version cut only be made using a knit. I opted for another piece of beautiful merino from The Fabric Store. Let's face it, whenever I get the chance to work with and wear some of this stuff at the moment I'm taking it! I just adore the vibrant colours available plus it washes (delicate 30 degree machine cycle) and wears so well. This is their standard 200gsm single jersey in Marsala from the premium merino range and has a lovely drape to it which would be suitable for most knit garments. For the twist front of this design you don't want anything too bulky. The colour choice is a little unusual for me as I don't tend to wear a lot of red but over the last year or so my most successful projects tend to have made use of warm, bold, solid colours so I went with my gut and think this is going to be a great addition to my somewhat black, neutral and green casual wardrobe. I think it helps that is quite a warm red with a pinkish tinge which suits my colouring much better than a brash brick or primary red. It looks much pinker in the flat photos than it does in reality!

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Red Merino Aomori Twist Top from Papercut Patterns

The construction looks like it would be confusing or complex but it's actually extremely straightforward. The two front panels slot together when the majority of the top has been constructed leaving just the side seam to close. It was extremely satisfying to see it all come together. It was the perfect project to ease myself back into the swing of sewing when my brain was tired as it only took a couple of hours but the new to me order of construction required to achieve that twist front meant I needed to focus. I find sewing so soothing when I've got a lot going on as it's so calming to fix your thoughts on just the one thing and switch off from everything else buzzing round in my brain! The merino is of course gorgeous to work with so it was a hassle free project from start to finish.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Red Merino Aomori Twist Top from Papercut Patterns

The pattern is labelled as suitable for 'skilled' sewers on the Papercut difficulty scale and I think and understanding of how a garment comes together would help the process but there's nothing too complex for an advanced beginner to tackle. The trickiest part is probably the binding which runs all the way around the neckline, through the centre of the twist and around the hem in a large loop. It requires some accuracy and patience and I would recommend selecting a fabric which responds well to pressing and can hold a crease as this will help hugely to achieve a neat and even finish. I'm delighted with how mine has turned out. I've not used this binding method on a knit garment before and it's a lovely little touch that seems a step up from a classic band or turned and twin needled hem.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Red Merino Aomori Twist Top from Papercut Patterns

The only problem I encountered was with the overlocked edge on one side of the twist front wanting to peek out to the right side once everything was assembled. I had used black overlocking thread so this wasn't ideal and no matter how many times I tried to encourage it to twist inside it seemed to come back out. Fortunately this only seems to happen when the top is flat as once worn everything hangs just perfectly. I was also concerned that the weight of the fabric in the twist might encourage the front of the top to pull forward from the shoulder but it sits in place nicely which is testament to the quality of the drafting.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Red Merino Aomori Twist Top from Papercut Patterns

I cut the size XS which is one up from the smallest in the Papercut size range. I'm a pretty much exact match for that size except a couple of inches larger in the hip. I thought I could get away with it this time as it's a relaxed fit knit style but I could probably do with a little more room over the bum as it tends to ride up as I move then sit just above the hip rather than hanging down as in the sample pictures. The top does require a little more fabric than you may expect as there are some quite large and unusually shaped pattern pieces as you can see in the picture below! I did however get away with using a fair bit less than the recommended amount; I reckon I used around about 1.25m at 132cm wide.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Red Merino Aomori Twist Top from Papercut Patterns

The neckline does plunge down quite low but it doesn't feel revealing at all because of the way the fabric lays over the chest and dips down into the twist. I feel very comfortable and at ease in it; in fact when I tried it on for the first time I kept it on for the next hour while I was tidying up as it just felt so very me straight away. The only change I might make is to slim down the arms slightly as my personal preference is for a tighter sleeve but the dropped shoulder and volume in the upper arm balances out nicely with the twist front and I do feel very comfortable in this with the sleeves pushed up as in the photos.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Red Merino Aomori Twist Top from Papercut Patterns

Because of the way the hem curves up into the front twist the top does need too be worn with a high waisted trouser/skirt/short but I also think this would be a great unusual outer layer to throw on over dresses and jumpsuits when the temperature takes a dip in the evening. I love it with jeans and trainers as worn here but also think in this rich solid colour it could have an effortless glamour too.

Diary of a Chain Stitcher: Red Merino Aomori Twist Top from Papercut Patterns

I'll definitely be making a sleeveless version and I'm even tempted to get it cut out tonight as I have a fine piece of black viscose jersey lurking in my stash which I think would be perfect for it. I might treat myself to the paper version of another of the new Papercut designs too but at the moment I'm torn between the dramatic contemporary shape of the Nagoya Pants and the beautiful back of the Kobe Dress/Top. I've seen a lot of love for the Sapporo Coat on social media; which of the new designs has most taken your fancy?

This is a syndicated post. Please visit the original author at Diary of a Chain Stitcher

You may like


Simplicity 8105

A quick post about a quick tee I made for Liddy.The Simplicity 8105 I saw this pattern on Lara’s instagram and thought it was perfect for my girls too.I sewed up the largest size (a 14 I think) in a stretchy cott…

read more

#ebonyTee – just two more (for now)

Yes, I know! MORE Ebony Tee’s…haven’t I got anything better to do? Well yes (actually no – so if you have any pattern suggestions please let me know)…but these are different as I’ve added one inch to the length so I can wear them with my tighter pa…

read more

The Buying a House Blouse


Hello, everyone!  It’s been quite a while since I have posted anything.



The main reason for my online disappearance is the fact that I am now a homeowner!  That process has kept me rather busy, and the move, etc., has not left much time for sewing, let alone blogging.  I was actually without internet for a couple of weeks which was rather refreshing.


Of course, I wanted to make a new outfit for the occasion, but there was not a lot of free time prior to closing.  But I was determined!  


I have been wanting to make this blouse for years.  I often pull out scraps of fabric along with the pattern, hoping that I can squeeze out an entire garment, but it never has worked for me.  Until now!


The leftovers from this skirt and this dress were tucked away in a drawer, and while the dye lots do not match, I think I managed to make it work.  The neck tie was made with the leftovers from the skirt, and the rest of the blouse (which is a slightly more pigmented and heavier weight cotton) was cut from the remains of the dress.  There were quite a few people who thought that the look was actually a dress, so I guess the difference is not terribly obvious.


These photos were taken about an hour after signing all of the paperwork (in my old neighborhood).  I was exhausted, but very happy.


I really began looking in earnest over a year ago, so it was a huge relief to finally be done.


It has been quite an adventure, and my new living space is still not “finished,” but Valentino and I are definitely settling in, and I am finally getting back into a routine – one that will definitely include many more sewing adventures!



Blouse:  Made by me, Butterick 4985

Skirt:  Made by me, Butterick 4792
Shoes:  Born “Kharen”

read more

What to Pack For a Day at the Beach With a Toddler

It’s not summer to me until we’ve been to the beach. Being by the water has always been so restful and healing for my soul. The older I get, the more of a beach gal I seem to become. I’m happy to report that Piper shares my love of the water and has loved the […]

The post What to Pack For a Day at the Beach With a Toddler appeared first on Love Lola | A Life & Style Blog.

read more
Jan 2016 Accuquilt Sale