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Love Notions Willow Wrap Top

May is slipping away from me so fast! I feel a little bad, as I haven't been blogging as much as I want and Me Made May isn't a full...

May is slipping away from me so fast! I feel a little bad, as I haven't been blogging as much as I want and Me Made May isn't a full success. I'm struggling to get photos of all my outfits! But I'm definitely wearing my me made, so don't fret!

Ever since the Deep Stash Sew Along contest, I've been looking at my patterns a little differently. We've talked more than  few times about how many patterns I have. I can now admit that there was a time I could have used a patterns anonymous group. But no more! But I'm not that girl anymore. At least I don't think I am. Yes, I still get the urge to buy something new, but I've made this new deal with myself. No more new patterns unless you try something "old." And man, do I have options!

I purchased the Love Notions Willow Wrap Top when it first released. According to my google account that would be February 2015. I sewed it once and failed, failed, failed. <sigh> It was so very awful. But back in 2015, I was still learning. And oh how I've learned!

Things of note. I knew I was going to use rayon spandex on this pattern. So I didn't bother with a full bust adjustment. I knew the fabric had more stretch than the pattern required, so the fabric would make up the difference.

I removed 1/2" above the bust. I used a size medium blended to a small hip. My high hip is thinner than the average high hip for either my full hip or my waist. I double checked the pattern pieces' waist width before I came to the conclusion that there was plenty of waist ease, so no need to blend in or out for it. I removed 1" at the shorten/lengthen line (although this did not appear to be the thinnest area of the pattern).

As I was digging through my stash of washed and ready to cut fabrics, I realized I didn't have any cuts that were big enough to handle two full sized fronts for a true wrap top. What's a girl to do?! Normally I would head out to the shop and cut myself a piece of yardage and get it into the wash. BUT, I was on a timeline so I had to improvise. So I made a partial front for the under layer. Full width, but only about 4" down from the lowest side of the wrap. If you're going to do this, I HIGHLY recommend hemming the under layer and probably adding just a touch of elastic into the hem so that it pulls under the bust. I didn't do this and occasionally throughout the day I needed to tuck the partial side back down. This could also be the result of me skipping out on the FBA. Who knows. But I'm excited about this trick to save a little fabric for times when I need it.

The pattern has 2 crossover bodice options. Regular and a lower scooped one for nursing access. I thought I would be smart and make my wrap half way between the two. It seemed like a really good idea at the time. Lower than the regular version, but not so low that I'd need the included modesty panel. While my husband enjoyed the view, I think next time I'll aim for a higher neckline. I'll show you at some point in the future how to tell if a neckline is where you want it to be without having to sew your pattern.

I did run into one discrepancy and I'm going to mention it here. When I shorten the bodice above the bust I always shorten in the armscye. My arms are super thin by anyone's standards, so I need that smaller armhole. This SHOULD mean that the sleeve cap is too long. When I walked my sleeve along the armscye, I found that it was exactly the right size! That means that the original sleeve is about 3/4" smaller than the armscye in the size medium. Did she mean to have negative ease in the sleeve? A knit will allow that sort of difference. But when I browse the tester photos they all consistently have a wrinkle heading up into their armpit. This could be from a too tight sleeve. It could also be completely unrelated.

For the sleeve, I did do something I almost never do. I made a short sleeve! Why? Wrap tops do a great job of minimizing a very large bust. (They're also very good at making a small bust look bigger. It is some sort of voodoo magic I think... 😵). I knew that the wrap would shrink my bust. For the first time ever, I thought this might be a good time to make my bust a little bigger, at least visually. I think it created a nice balance. I will say, as always, the sleeve hem was too big for my stick thin arms. So I'll take that in just a touch before my next attempt.

Overall, I'm REALLY happy I took the time to make this top. I can see more in my future. But more importantly, I can justify my purchase of the Itch To Stitch Lianas, LOL.

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