Friday, 11 March 2011

The Lisette portfolio tunic

I made a practise, or muslin version, of the new Lisette portfolio tunic yesterday.  I used an old 1970s bed sheet of my mother's (or maybe Grandmother's) for the muslin, which I remember vividly from my childhood.  I love old bed sheets and duvet covers for making muslins - there's so much fabric to use, the patterns are often funky enough to wear if the muslin turns out well, and being so old the fabric is incredibly soft and tactile.  There was a great article on Whip Up yesterday about sewing with vintage bed sheets.

The Lisette patterns are a new venture by Liesl Gibson, who designs the Oliver + S children's clothing patterns.  Instead of publishing the patterns entirely by herself, as she does for Oliver + S, she has teamed up with Simplicity for the Lisette patterns.  This warmed me to the patterns immediately as I get on very well with Simplicity patterns.

I've made a few Oliver + S clothes for O, and although I love the designs I do find the instructions too slow and detailed for my liking.  They are perfect for anyone new to dressmaking, because everything is very clear and carefully explained, but I end up getting frustrated with the large number of small, detailed steps. 

The Lisette patterns are much more my sort of thing.  There are still plenty of handy tips and suggestions in the instructions, but I could rattle through them at a good pace, making adjustments and changes as I saw fit.

Lisette Portfolio tunic top

I followed the pattern for the tunic length top - there are both longer and shorter versions of the top included in the pattern, as well as trousers.  The tunic has two low pockets which wasn't apparent from the picture on the packet.  I love these pockets so much though - they make the tunic look very quirky I think.

I made the top across one afternoon and evening, so it was quite a quick project (once I had traced and cut all the pattern pieces, which I hate doing, and which took me the almost another entire day).  I struggled with the pockets at first - it seemed counter intuitive to do what the instructions told me - but when I calmed down and did as i was told, it all worked perfectly.  The outside neckband caused rather a lot of swearing as I had to spend ages pinning it, and then rip the stitches out twice before it worked.  But other than that it was all very straightforward, and next time I would rattle though it twice as quickly, I'm sure.

And there will be a next time.  I like how it looks.  The neckline is higher than I would usually choose, but I'm getting used to it.  The fabric choices I made are a little odd, but I have to remind myself that this is a practise version.  I think the contrasting pieces would have looked much better in yellow, not dark brown, but I just used up what I had to hand on my shelves.  I want to make it in ticking (red and grey, preferably) or a thick, crisp quilting cotton.

The fit is making me quite happy.  Next time I'd sew the side seams with a bigger seam allowance to give myself more of a waist, but I like how this fits across the bust and hips - notoriously tricky areas to get right.

Lisette Portfolio tunic top


Lisette portfolio tunic

Lisette portfolio tunic
Lisette portfolio tunic

The weather was warm enough on our walk today that I could ask Gill to take these photos of me when we stopped by a log for a coffee break.  I think the tunic even looks rather good paired with baggy, old, muddy jeans and my walking boots!  It will be even nicer though with some skinny jeans or leggings, and great as a cover-up from the sun this summer.

I'm very happy.  Off to rummage for some fancier fabric now to make myself another version.

6 comments:

  1. Gorgeous! It looks great with your jeans.

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  2. Nancy that looks great! I must now go away and order the pattern. Although the swearing occaisioned by daughters Simplicity top has been great....

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  3. Brilliant! Thank you for alerting me to these patterns, they are fab.

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  4. Hello! Thank you for your comment - I am very glad to meet you although I can see immediately that guerilla sewing might be more up your street than yarn bombing!

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  5. The tunic looks super! A perfect fit. And I adore the pockets!

    K x

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