As promised, I have put the Paolina tee top to one side for a while whilst I try out a new pattern. In over 50 years of sewing I have never made a wrap front top or dress. There seems to be many versions on Pinterest, the various vlogs and blogs that I follow so I have taken the leap and purchased the Dartmouth pattern from Cashmerette.
Cashmerette state the following about their pattern:
Dreaming of a pattern that is casual and chic? Look no further than the Dartmouth Top! This cross-over jersey top comes with two variations—a classic fixed wrap or modern ruched front—and features three sleeve lengths and a gape-free banded neckline. Whether made in a cosy sweater knit or slinky silk jersey, the Dartmouth is the perfect partner for your favourite pair of jeans!
RECOMMENDED FABRIC: Mid-weight knit fabric, such as cotton or rayon jersey, with at least 50% stretch. Also suitable for light to mid-weight sweater knits.
As this is to be a wearable toile, I used a length of fine silky tee-shirt weight viscose jersey purchased some time ago from Fabricland in Salisbury. The fabric has been laundered and was originally intended for a Moneta dress but as the fabric has great drape I thought I would use it for the Dartmouth instead.
I checked the measurement chart and cut a size 20 C cup for view B which does not have the additional ruching at the side seams. I reduced the length of the bodice by just 1 inch and kept the sleeves the same long length. I had plenty of fabric and it is easy to shorten sleeves if they are too long. Cutting out according to my own pattern layout took just 1.40 metres of 150 cm wide fabric.
Construction was straightforward as I followed the comprehensive instructions. There were just a few changes that I made. I do not use clear elastic in the shoulder seams – I prefer a narrow strip of fusible interfacing. For all the seams, excluding the hems, I used my 4-thread overlocker. This first make took a little over 1 hour but I believe that with a more stable fabric (this one slip and slid all over the place!) I should be able to stitch a Dartmouth in just 1 hour.
First fit was very good in all areas except length. I turned up the sleeves and the bodice hems by 1 ½ inches before securing with twin-needle stitching. Also with a more stable knit I will probably narrow the sleeves a little from the elbow to the cuff.
Dartmouth – full length
I especially like the banding on the neckline and front wraps of this top and will certainly make the pattern again.
Dartmouth – close up of banding
Dartmouth gets a thumbs up from me!