I was really excited not only to be asked to test sew but also to try something new in the world of sewing with knits. And, in this case, this was the neat colour blocking shapes and fold-elastic incorporated into Mari's awesome design.
As Mari describes, "the Yellow Tail Camisole is a comfortable yet cheeky knit" and is great paired with jeans, worn at the gym or as a casual cami under a top. You can make it one solid colour, or colour-block it as I have done here. I used some awesome paint-splash jersey I found at Rolls & Rems in Lewisham, paired with a solid black cotton jersey. You hardly use any yardage - I used less than half a metre, so you could seriously whip up a bunch of these in different combinations. Perfect!
Mari's pattern is really clear and easy. Everything goes together extremely well and I stitched my pieces using a 3-3.5 mm straight stitch (with my walking foot) as recommended by Nancy Zieman in the book Sew Knits with Confidence. As my knits were both pretty stable I didn't need to use a zig zag stitch.
The design incorporates a clever facing (the black section above the bust) which folds over itself. The top is then finished with fold-over elastic which completes the raw edge of the back and the armholes, while creating the shoulder straps. You get to pin the shoulder straps to the length you want, according to what kind of 'lift' you want. In my case, all the help I can get sista!
I have never used fold-over elastic before and practiced beforehand as Mari suggests in the pattern instructions. I ordered some black fold-over elastic off Ebay for minimal cost. You can use either side of the elastic, but for this top I had the shiny side showing as I thought it added extra detail. Sewing the elastic didn't seem too difficult and I coped quite well, but you do need to be careful not to stretch the back. Any good tips for sewing knits and elastic without causing poopy stretching?
I really love this pattern and can't wait to make some more. Next time I will make one for the gym (maybe get some badass neon going on) and I also want to make some pretty night-camisoles out of this cute flamingo jersey I have. The options are endless.
The other great thing about this pattern is that Mari is offering it as a 'Pay What You Want' option. This means that you get to pay exactly what you want be it zero to $100! However, 50% of all proceeds go to charity to fight hunger in America, which is pretty awesome if you ask me, and, when combined with all the hard work that goes into producing a pattern, means this is definitely worthy of a price of a coffee or two (or 3 or 4!), am I right? HELL YES.
Yey! Pay for this pattern and give something to charity people!