Same Pattern, Different Bodies: Sew Sew Def SaldanaJune 7, 2017 / bymeg / Categories : Feeds
I noticed that a lot of curvy women were sewing up versions of the Saldana pattern, from the inaugural issue of SewSewDef Magazine. I thought it would be interesting to compare and contrast these curvy ladies’ experiences with the Saldana pattern in a Same Pattern, Different Bodies post!
The Saldana pattern, available with the April 2017 issue of SewSewDef Magazine, or separately purchased here, is a PDF pattern (with print-at-home and copyshop versions) in sizes XXS-2XL (up to a 47″ bust, 39″ waist, 49″ hip). The pattern is for a knit t-shirt or dress with interesting seam lines, a v-neck, side panels, gathers at the back neckline, roll-up short sleeves, optional topstitching on all the seams and a slightly curved swingy hem.
Here is Sew Sew Def’s description:
The Saldana pattern is the perfect High-Low T-Shirt or Maxi Dress. It is designed to be easy to sew, easy to wear and very chic. There are so many possibilities with The Saldana by simply mixing prints and colors. Along with the two variations that come with your pattern we also provide a quick and easy modification to get a third look from one pattern!”
And here’s how each of these curvy women made the pattern work!:
- Measurements: Bust – 38″, Cup Size – C, Waist – 36″, Hips – 48″, Height – 5’4″
- Pattern size: Brittany cut the size Large, knee length dress version
- Alterations: Brittany did not make any adjustments. She thought she would have to do her usual bust, waist, and hip grading between pattern lines, but not for this pattern.
- Fabric: She used a Liverpool Knit fabric from LaFinch Fabrics, which is a great weight, cool and light enough for warm weather.
- Fit: Brittany loves the fit of the dress! She says “[The Saldana is a] great dress to put on, belt it, with some wedges, or throw on a denim jacket and sneakers!”
- Changes for future Saldanas: If she makes it again (and she plans to), she will have fun and do some color blocking with the side panels, or maybe add some piping along the front seams.
- Read more about Brittany’s Saldana dress on her blog!
- Measurements: Bust – 45″, Cup Size – D, Waist – 44.5″, Hip – 53.5″, Height – 5’6″
- Pattern Size: Carolyn cut a size 2X in the maxi dress version.
- Alterations: Carolyn did a pivot and slide to add 4″ to the hip area. She enlarged the sleeves so that they fit her “bodacious biceps” and lengthened them to cover her arms. She also made a few style changes: she added a piece of border print across the v-neck to raise it a bit and sewed the maxi dress side slits up.
- Fabric: Carolyn used a lightweight scuba knit.
- Fit: Carolyn likes the fit of the dress. She says “It’s a comfortable wear and easy to commute in – two important things to me.”
- Read more about Carolyn’s Saldana dress on her blog!
- Carolyn also reviewed the Sew Sew Def magazine if you’re interested to hear more about it!
- Measurements: Bust – 46″, Cup Size – DDD, Waist- 38″, Hip -49″, Height – 5’9″
- Pattern Size: Quana cut a 2XL t-shirt since the pattern was described as “true to size,” so she didn’t use her upper bust measurement.
- Alterations: Quana made a forward shoulder adjustment although she feels that, ultimately, it wasn’t necessary because of the extra ease and gathering in the back.
- Fabric: She used a bright polyester foil jersey.
- Fit: Quana likes the fit of the t-shirt because it has a swing at the hem with some “shaping” in the front and back.
- Changes for future Saldanas: For future Saldanas, Quana will adjust the shoulder and back neckline, and possibly make one of the dresses. She says she may also reduce the ease at the waist/hem so it will be a little more fitted through the waist. She will try a fabric with more drape, too.
- Read more about Laquana’s Saldana t-shirt on her blog!
- Measurements: Bust – 42″, Cup Size – D, Waist – 36″, Hips – 45.5″, Height – 5’7.5″
- Pattern size: Although my measurements put me in an XL at the hip, I cut the size Large t-shirt.
- Alterations: I did a 1″ full bicep adjustment after comparing the sleeve to some other t-shirt patterns I have; it seemed a bit narrow for me. I also decided not to do the roll-up sleeve. I shortened the sleeves by 4″ and just hemmed them up 3/4″.
- Fabric: I used two different rayon/lycra knits.
- Fit: I really like this Saldana top! I’m a fan of t-shirts that fit closely at the bust, but then swing out at the hip so they don’t cling to my belly. The seamlines are nice, the v-neck is a great depth and shape, and it’s got a nice casual/cool/sporty vibe.
- Changes for future Saldanas: I don’t think I would make any fit changes, but I would definitely like to try the maxi dress version- it looks so comfy!
- Read more about my Saldana t-shirt on my blog!
This is a syndicated post. Please visit the original author at Curvy Sewing Collective
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I added an inside pocket, and made it as big as I could without interfering with the darts. It’s big enough for a phone.
I stuck a pin through the lining and leather where the tailor’s tack was (the tack was just in the lining), to mark the snap position on the leather. Then I used the washer as a template, and marked the position of the prongs with a pen (making sure it wouldn’t bleed through to the front!).
|Admire that lovely top stitching!|
How much adjustment do you do on a very simple pattern? Do you feel it’s worthwhile to make very small changes to get it just right or perhaps you sew up simple things as is and save your efforts for a special dress or coat.
This simple dress pattern is something that I choose as one of the suggestions for my Sew a Dress class at Hello Stitch in Berkeley. (scheduled again for Sun. July 30 – the first one was great fun. More details at the bottom of this post on all the upcoming classes). As it happens Craftsy asked me to write a longer post outlining all the steps to sew a simple dress, consequently I decided to sew up this pattern and get a lot of things done with one project. Plus I’ve been on a shift dress kick lately. They are such simple and pleasant things to wear. Since it was 107˚F in the SHADE here yesterday I would rather have worn a dress made of ice cubes but since that is not going to happen a shift dress it is.
I have had this fabric in my stash for a good 5 or 6 years. It’s a cotton batik that I bought in Hawaii, quite a large amount (5 yards) and just never found a use for it. Slightly heavy as a lot of batiks are, so not really good for most dresses plus the vertical stripe had me stumped. I think I found the perfect style for it that uses the stripe best. Plus I can wear my stripes navy blue espadrille sandals – double win.
Here’s the pattern envelope, with a sneak peek of a subsequent version of this dress. Which everyone has gone wild for on my Instagram teases, embroidered denim must be the thing this summer. The envelope says D0569 but all the pattern pieces say New Look 6500 so I’m calling it that. I really like New Look patterns, they come up with some super cute dresses and tops, plus they include all sizes in one envelope and cost $ 3.99 all the time.
Onward to my adjustments: I sewed this dress for the Craftsy post, not as a wearable but as a “photograph-able” item, i.e. something that would really show in the step-by-step tutorial but I had no intention of wearing it. It was actually quite a pleasure to just sew up a dress with no changes, I sewed the size 12 and went from there.
Here is the version I sewed for Craftsy, in a quilting cotton that I had in my stash, I think a remainder from a project I did for someone on Etsy ages ago. And I really loathe this color of green so don’t even tell me that you like this dress on me 🙂 Plus for the most part sewing/wearing garments with quilting cotton is a bit NO for me. With some exceptions they always look a bit off: too wrinkly, too juvenile, too unsophisticated to claim my interest.
But I include the photo of me wearing this one to show the neckline fit. That neckline was choking me – I don’t like that high round neckline and when you move your head forward it’s so uncomfortable. Good shoe match thought, right?
Back to the blue and white batik version. Can you see the difference in the neckline? It is so much more comfortable for me in the second version. I wanted to figure out exactly how much to open the neck so I made a version of just the top half of the dress in swedish tracing paper – and every time I use that I remember that is has absolutely no give. While it seems like a good idea because you can sew it – putting it on is not so easy. I did put a zipper so I could actually try it on – which worked in the end but it was kind of shredded. However it was good enough to slice and dice a bit, figuring out how I wanted the final neckline to be shaped.
I cut out the batik version based on my new neckline, and basted it together at the shoulder seams to see if I liked the neckline. It still seemed a bit too high for my preference and also I like the armholes to be more cut in at the shoulder in a sleeveless dress. So instead of cutting more off the edges of the dress I made a one piece facing for front and back, and then used tracing paper to mark a seam line. At the neck I took away a further 5/8″ (total seam allowance now 1.25″) and then on the armholes I think I sewed it at around 7/8″ which makes the armhole a bit bigger all around. You have to be careful that it doesn’t make the armhole too low but this dress had a very tight armhole so there was plenty of room.
On my next version of this dress (the embroidered chambray fabric) I’ll show how I make the one piece facing plus this upcoming version is lined so it incorporates facing and lining together.
The original New Look pattern had separate neck and armhole facings which works ok, not my preference but not as horrible as some make it out to be. But there’s a better way. Another option for these simple summer dresses is bias binding but I wanted to show the traditional or basic type of dress sewing.
But we are not done yet! In fact this adjustment should have come up first in my writing but I only remembered to take this picture a few minutes and include it. The bust dart on this dress is both large and high. I measured it on the pattern piece and could see that it needed to be lower so I did that before I did anything else, just a straightforward shift downward about 3/4″. The bust dart is kind of larger than it would be had there been other darts (vertical waist darts) or other shaping. Trying it on it made the dart a bit too pointy – not my favorite look. So I reduced the width of the dart.
On the tracing paper on the left you can see the faint outline of the original dart, too high. The second placement, lower but too big, and then the final version in the purple dotted line, just right. I sound like Goldilocks don’t I but if you’re going to do adjustments you might as well go all the way until you like the fit.
Back and side view, you can barely see the dart but that is the ideal, at least for me. Since the side seams were not even in length I split the difference at the top of the seam at the armhole and sliced off about 3/8″ off the side back at that point. Worked out fine.
So that’s chapter one on my summer shift dress extravaganza. I have some more complex things in line for my sewing table but not sure what order I will sew them.
Here’s the link to that Craftsy post: The Complete Beginners Guide to Sewing a Dress.
Update on classes at Hello Stitch Studio on Berkeley. The Fit Lab was great – we are going to schedule this class again soon. In July we are repeating Saturday classes for sewing Skirts, Tunic Tops, and a new on starting on Wed 7/26 in the evening is a Button-front shirt class. All these classes are two sessions scheduled a week apart so not a long term time commitment and you will get a project done (or nearly) and learn some new and useful techniques. The Dress class is an all-day one on Sun. 7/30. FYI: I’ve found parking to be surprisingly easy around the studio and it is no more than a 10 minute walk from the Berkeley Bart station so really convenient to get to.
This was yesterday afternoon. Survival mode with an iced coffee. thankfully lots cooler today (ha ha only mid 90’s˚F).
Happy weekend sewing,
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