The fabric is a Liberty lawn, purchased from The Fabric Store. Initially, I was going to sew a loose popover top with this fabric. Then I was watching an episode of "Death in Paradise" where Florence was wearing a close fit plaid shirt. I have mentioned before that a lot of my day-to-day wardrobe inspiration does come from Death in Paradise. Whilst I don't actually live in the tropics any more, it still gets pretty hot here. I didn't copy Florence's shirt, but rather changed my thinking to a short-sleeved more fitted top. I remembered Marfy 1272, which I have never made up because fitting clothes with sleeves scares me. Marfy 1272 is from the 2007 catalogue. Yep, I've had this pattern for 10 years. I actually haven't bought a Marfy pattern since, because they are really expensive to get sent here, and I told myself I couldn't buy any more if I hadn't made up the ones I had already bought. Now I've made this, I am free to peruse the Marfy catalogue once again.
This was sewn for a plaid competition, so there was always going to be a lot of plaid matching going on. Notice, how I used an unbalanced plaid? No? I didn't even know what an unbalanced plaid was until I was reading up in preparation for sewing this. Now I know that unbalanced plaids are harder to work with than regular plaids, and don't work so well for bias details. Anyway, just so you can fully appreciate my plaid matching awesomeness, I am going to show you the muslin, so that you can see the design lines. I didn't sew the pocket flaps, epaulets or button tabs on the muslin.
The design has a strong 70's uniform vibe. Which means, that if I ever what to dress like Dwayne or JP from "Death in Paradise", this pattern would be a good place to start!
My plaid is unbalanced, but the thick navy stripes were equally spaced, so I used those as my base for distributing the panels and matching stripes.
The oblique pocket flaps are very groovy. I matched the navy stripes from upper bodice to sleeve flaps.
There are 4 panels in the back, but you can hardly tell, with pretty good plaid matching. I did cut the collar upside down, so the navy stripes match from collar to yoke, but the pale pink stripes don't. I didn't think it mattered enough to warrant remaking collar stand and collar (given that I am not very good at sewing collars and find making one set stressful enough).
The design changes I made to the pattern were;
- lengthen top by 2.5 inches
- omit epaulets (only because I did not have enough of the lovely navy buttons).
- omit belt
- roll up sleeves
- 1 cm square shoulder adjustment (affecting back yoke, front, collar and collar stand)
- forward shoulder joint (affecting sleeve)
- narrow chest (affecting front bodice, sleeve flap and side panel)
- added width at the hips
The collar is pretty big. The collar stand is high. Having the collar so high up on my neck makes the top warmer to wear, so I would probably cut it down a bit if I made another version.
I decided not to match the sleeve tabs. I think if it all matches too well, some lovely details get lost.