Sunday, May 24, 2015

Seamwork Astoria in Ponte


I've been getting Colette's Seamwork magazine since the beginning. I mean, I am nothing but a shameless pattern hoarder, and a subscription to this digital magazine comes with 2 patterns a month. 1 + 1 = 2.


Anyway, I haven't jumped on any of the Seamwork patterns yet. I printed out Oslo, but then quickly realized it had no practical purpose in my current life in Bangkok, so I didn't actually put scissor to fabric. Maybe when I move to a place with falls and winters, yes, but in the meantime, no. I'm intrigued by some of the other patterns, including OsakaFlorence and Adelaide, but just haven't pulled the trigger yet.


After making a few high-waisted skirts and realizing how well they go with my beloved Bluegingerdoll Bonnie cropped sweater, I was curious to try the Seamwork Astoria cropped sweater pattern to see how it compared. Figuring I could kill two birds with one stone (namely, satisfy my curiosity and enter the #seamworkgiveaway), I whipped one up.


I'm pretty happy with the Astoria pattern. I think it's as advertised: a one hour pattern. Especially if you use a solid color fabric, this thing is super quick to cut and sew. I literally sewed this thing in 5 or 6 (I lost track) 9-minute sessions, in between putting batches of cookies for a colleague's going away party into the oven. I probably could have cut that time down even further if I had drafted some bands for the sleeves so I could serge them on rather than thread my regular machine with the twin needle for just to hem them.




I didn't edgestitch/topstitch the neckline as recommended in the instructions because I thought it would mess with the sleek lines. Upon further inspection, I noticed that the neckline is not topstitched in any of the Astoria sample photos... hmmm... 


Generally, I like the Astoria, but relative to the Bonnie, the Astoria fit is not quite as good. I think I need to lose a bit of bodice length to avoid some bunching in the back (a significant amount- just realizing I forgot to take a photo of the back) and front (less so). I also feel like the bodice is a bit wide across the upper bust?  Maybe something else... anyone have any fitting tips based on the armpit wrinkles you see below?


My fabric is some magenta ponte from Girl Charlee, purchased, somewhat ironically, with winnings from the Bonnie sewalong. It's soft and nice, with a bit of a sheen.


Have you made Astoria yet? Planning on it? Are you on the cropped sweater/jumper bandwagon? Cropping all the things or sticking to full length tops?

27 comments:

  1. You look great in this sweater. I admit I have never been a cropped shirt fan - I have never found it to work super-well on me - but perhaps if I made myself a highwaisted knit pencil skirt to suck in the poundage right below the waist, the cropped length wouldn't highlight them? I digress, though.

    The folds around the armpit look to me like the fabric wants to make a dart, suggesting that you need a little more fabric around the girls? Though honestly every RTW knit top I've ever bought, and most of the ones I've sewn, do this too. If you wanted to fuss with it and with the fit in the upper bodice (since you said you thought it was wide) you could cut a smaller shoulder size and then grade out in the bust - I do that as standard on all my Plantains now.

    But this is all nit-picky because it looks really good on you and I didn't even notice the folds until you pointed them out.

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    1. Thanks, Masha. Ha ha- maybe I seemed too concerned about the fitting issues in my post - I'm pretty happy with Astoria! It might even be the fabric I chose just shows off the wrinkles a bit more than the fabric I used for my Bonnie. The ponte is much thicker than the sweater knit.

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  2. I"m a big fan of cropped sweaters, though I never thought I would be! For me they work better as summer dress toppers then in winter... I'm not sure I would like a full-sleeved version as much. That colour looks nice on you, and I appreciate your comparison of the two patterns!

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    1. I'm glad I'm not the only cropped convert! Yes, they're perfect for wearing over dresses or with high-waist skirts. I agree, somehow the proportions of the 3/4 length sleeves look better to me, to.

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  3. I love this color on you! Your Onyx shirt and this top are so good with your coloring. I haven't loved the two things that I made from Seamwork patterns but I think I'm going to give this a shot (although maybe I should just get the Bonnie pattern and try that? The Deer and Doe Ondee is intriguing to me, too, since the Plantain fits me so well through the shoulders and bust.)

    About the underarm folds, a sloping shoulder adjustment could help. If you raise your shoulders a little bit do the folds go away? I have this problem with almost every knit item I make and the adjustment works for me to get rid of the wrinkles. There is a good diagram here of how to lower the outer edge of the shoulder seam and also drop the underarm by the same amount.

    http://verypurpleperson.com/2011/02/mens-shirt-adjusting-muslin/

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    1. Thanks, Teri! There are so many cropped sweater patterns out there right now! Maybe Onde does make sense for you if D&D fits you well.

      Thanks for the tip re: sloping shoulders! I think that definitely may be a fitting tweak I should start considering. I did some research on it and have some of the symptoms of it, for sure- bra straps falling off the shoulders, etc.

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  4. This colour looks amazing on you! I feel/felt the same about Seamwork and this was the first pattern I tried. I like it and it's cute, but mine has the same underarm wrinkles, which I think may require an FBA. I am now really interested in trying Bonnie (I have it cause I'm a pattern hoarder too) because of your comparison. I think your Astoria looks great and is totally wearable, If I were you and I was making another one, I'd probably just stick with Bonnie because your striped one is awesome!!

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    1. I agree, I might just stick to Bonnie, although I am thinking that the fit on Astoria is fine, it's just the thicker fabric I used highlights the flaws a bit more than the sweater knit I used for my Bonnie. You should try Bonnie! It has some fun sleeve options and also comes with a full-length option, too, so it's pretty versatile.

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  5. It looks so good! The colour is stunning.

    I just bought this pattern because I have started wearing more me made dresses and the waists are a bit higher so I need some short waisted jumpers. Although right after I bought it I realised I already own the Bonnie pattern, so I might make that first. How do you think either pattern would go with a lighter fabric? I have some lovely merino knit I want to use but it's pretty drapey, I'm worried it wouldn't be firm enough. Perhaps I could double it up.

    I agree with the folds being the fabric wanting to be a dart. I don't think it's the sloping shoulder thing - I have that myself, and I always have to grade down two sizes in the shoulder AND raise the shoulder, in knits. The drag lines from that are different, more of a vertical fold. I think what I would do in this pattern, if I were you (and if I make it, because I will definitely need this) is I would grade out a size at the full bust, and add some length to the back piece. Then, as I sewed it, I would pull the front taught so the front is sewn at a tighter tension than the back. Does that make any sense? Like you are sewing the front as stretched elastic. That way there will be proportionately more fabric at the bust than anywhere else.

    I have definitely seen tutes for this but I can't find them now, if I come across them I'll link them. I've used it with good success. The fold doesn't completely go away but it's much less noticeable. But bought ones do it an no one notices so as long as it's small enough that it doesn't bug me, I can live with it. I certainly didn't notice it in your photos until you pointed it out!

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    1. Thanks! I know Bonnie certainly works well in a lighter fabric- I made a striped version in a thin, almost sheer sweater knit as well as some Art Gallery jersey.

      Good idea on the cheater FBA! I'll have to try it sometime.

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    2. Good idea! I sometimes add a little extra width but haven't tried this - bet it works even better.

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  6. What they all said.
    I also did not notice armpit wrinkles until you said something. I agree with Masha on this one. If you want to fuss with it, knock yourself out, otherwise, nearly everything in knits usually has some folding there.

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    1. Yeah, this is what I'm thinking. I may try the cheater FBA and a teeny sloped shoulder adjustment, but otherwise, I won't get too worked up about it. I still like this Astoria!

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  7. Wow it's a cute pattern if iever saw one. I'll have to check out the other pattern you mentioned as well! I've noticed armpit wrinkling in a few patterns and I thought it was a booby fit issue, but lately I'm wondering if it's the armcye depth. Either way, I'm not sure how to fix mine! Loving your blog Btw:)

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    1. Thanks, Amy! Yeah, I am still working out what might be causing the wrinkles, but I am certainly wearing this Astoria top regardless! I just started following your blog, too!

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  8. #teamcropitall!
    I love the color. I think the outfit looks good together.
    Unfortunately I don't have any fit advice. But it may be what Amy was saying above

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  9. If you decide to experiment with solutions, I'm looking forward to learning what you figure out! I also have similar wrinkles in all the knit tops I make, but I only notice them in pictures so I don't care enough to use brain power to fix it. :D

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    1. Ha ha- I haven't decided how much I'll meddle with the fit. But I'll keep you posted if I do!

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  10. Love the color! I haven't tried any of the cropped sweaters yet so I appreciate the comparison.

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    1. Thanks, Noelle! I should really lay the pattern pieces on top of one another so you can see the differences!

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  11. I'm so scared of cropped sweaters, but I also don't have many high waisted bottoms. I'm way behind the times! Your Astoria is great and the whole outfit looks sharp..

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    1. Thanks, Helena! A few months ago, I had neither high-waisted bottom nor cropped top, but now I am addicted!!

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  12. Your sweater looks awesome, love the color! I just got fabric in the mail for my Astoria :)

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    1. Thanks!! Can't wait to see yours!

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  13. OK I'm jumping on the astoria band wagon and I have some questions :) My upper bust measures me into the M size, full bust L, and Hip XL. With the issue you had at the upper bust I'm worried about cutting an L to XL. Do you think there's enough give in the bust area for me to do the M and taper at the waist to an XL? So the bust would really be a M? I'm doing a quick muslin first, but as someone who made it already I thought I'd query :) This one looks great - especially in a ponte that doesn't have a ton of give.

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    1. Yay for Astoria! I should note that after wearing this top about a million times, I decided I was complaining a lot about nothing, really. But... hmmm... I wonder if you can cut an M at the shoulders and do a small cheater FBA for the bust then grade out for the waist? I didn't find that there was all that much extra room in the bust and if you did a size M at the bust, I worry that it might pull the waistband up too high and make the whole thing too cropped, if you know what I mean.

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