You may remember my wrangles (in Part 1) during my Rosa Shirtdress making experience with the fabric formerly known as black corduroy (now called something totally different, by me at least) . If you missed it, and care, it’s here.
The line drawing for Tilly and the Buttons Rosa Shirt/Shirtdress shows lots of the features I wanted to try out or improve upon and I knew some of them would be a challenge after a long time worshipping at the altars of the knit fabric and overlocker gods which is why I opted to purchase the online workshop along with the pattern.
See the princess seams, the forward shoulder seams, the pointed back yoke, the separate collar stand, the curved hem and rolled cuffs with tabs. Note the multitudinous buttons. These features along with mock felled seams, optional contrast fabric in the collar and button stands made me really want to give this a serious go. I know there are patch pockets but I have enough going on in the chest department without pointing it out so left those off. I made the shirt version as it’s the same as the dress only shorter and this was really just to try out the fit.
I showed off my collar in part 1 but I’m proud of it so here it is again (even though it looks as if one side is slightly shorter than the other – which it isn’t)
Here is an inside view of my mock felled seams and contrast button and collar stands.
Please ignore the slightly raggedy edges of the serged seam – that was BB (before Babylock) and just as my old overlocker was giving out.
Here is the rolled cuff with button tab.
Tilly & the Buttons has now released a bonus addition to the pattern for full length sleeves and standard cuffs which I might do next time I make this.
In this fetching back view you can see the pointed yoke which went perfectly the first time round but, when I had to undo it because there were holes in my charity shop fabric, I didn’t get it as precise the second time. I steamed the hell out of it which served to flatten the dreaded cord a bit but hey ho, it’s supposed to be a toile.
Probably my favourite bit is the curved hem at the back which has a look of a peplum about it from the side.
Here I am with one of my better behaved dogs.
And here is my doppleganger mannequin showing the complete article.
How come her waist looks smaller than mine and yet she is me?
When I make it again I need to take an inch off the shoulder width for me and make the dress in the next size up for my daughter to accommodate her bottom – something I sadly don’t appear to have much of any more.
The struggle I had with the buttonholes is almost too painful to repeat but it was, again, to do with the fabric. Being thick in itself and having interfacing and a contrast fabric on the back my Janome’s one step buttonhole feature was having none of it. Luckily I started (and screwed up multiple times) with those tabs on the cuffs so they were easy to re-cut and re-try. In the end though, I excavated my old Singer machine which has a four-step buttonhole and managed to do all the buttons using that. Next time it will be easier.
As always with a Tilly and the Buttons pattern it is presented on strong paper with dark lines and easily visible markings so a dream to trace if that’s what you like to do. It is well written in a neat little booklet with photographs which would have been perfectly sufficient for me in truth although the online workshop contains some very useful tips. Tilly’s presentation style is very friendly and down to earth and she has the sort of speaking voice I can listen to easily – and if you watch many YouTube videos, you will know how important that is. My only criticism of the online workshop would be that some of the straightforward sewing tasks performed could probably have been edited to make them shorter. My plan of – I’ve paid for it so I’m damn well going to do it – definitely paid off though and now I feel more confident in tackling patterns with a little more detail in than I previously would have chosen.
Now, bring on the zip insertions.
Do you find you need to take a step back, slow down and regroup every now and again in your sewing, knitting, painting or whatever? How do you get back on track? Or do you find your progression is constant and you just keep getting better and better, never making any mistakes? – in which case don’t tell me as I will probably hate you.