Monday, March 13, 2017

Wearable Muslin: The Sewing Workshop San Diego Tunic

My very wearable muslin of the Sewing Workshop San Diego tunic!

Recently, patterns from The Sewing Workshop have popped up on my radar. This company has been around a long time and has some funky and fun designs, but I haven't seen a ton of their patterns sewn up (with the exception of Elaine's Liberty shirt), nor did their pattern illustrations really catch my eye.

The pattern cover art screams '90s to me, which is why I'd probably overlooked these patterns initially. It wasn't until The Sewing Workshop recently shared photos of beautiful, modern samples on a variety of bodies that their patterns spoke to me...

In particular, the new San Diego pattern was calling my name. Originally (in 1999) just a jacket pattern, it was updated last year to include tunic and top variations, too. Since I've been leaning deep into art teacher chic/man repeller territory with my style choices lately (see also Adeline, Blaire, Kim, etc.), I went for the tunic. Here is the Sewing Workshop's description of the tunic: "loose-fitting tunic has faced overlapping front placket extending into deep front pleat, forward shoulders, angled hem and elbow-length sleeves with deep stitched hems."

Check out the San Diego gallery here for further inspiration. I particularly love the black linen tunic on the Joan from Mad Men lookalike as well as the floral wallpaper tunic.

For my wearable muslin, I used this odd, gauzy, very loosely woven cotton that I stole from my mom's stash. She said she originally bought it for bathrobes. It's a little bit sheer and has a cross-hatch texture on it. I adore the color (I've been crushing on orange lately) and the fabric is nice and flowy, albeit a little bit sticky at times (the tunic catches on my pants and itself a little bit).

I cut a size L at the shoulders and bust, graded to an XL at the hip, which worked out well. 

The instructions were quite good; thorough, with plenty of diagrams. Everything went together easily for me! I was also impressed with the attention to detail in the drafting like the little angled bits to ensure the seam and hem allowances true up (I'm sure there's a name for it, but whatever it is, it's great).

I did make things difficult for myself by cutting out the tunic with the fabric right side down and pattern right side up, which switched the right and left fronts. As a result, things occasionally got confusing as the instructions are very specifically written for the other way around. My fabric didn't help either since it frayed badly and didn't have an obvious right or wrong side.

Next time I might consider stay stitching the angled hem to make sure it doesn't stretch out. Mine is a bit wavy, although that may be because of my fabric choice, too.

I love the collar. In this fabric, mine is a little bit floppy (there is no interfacing in the collar or neck area), but I bet you could get some sweet popped collar action if you used a fabric with more body!

I am super pumped about this tunic! I think it's cool and chic, as well as incredibly comfortable. I've already worn it three times since making it and foresee myself wearing it on the regular. I'll definitely make another one soon!

I'm also looking forward to trying out some of the other Sewing Workshop patterns I've invested in. I have their Barcelona top, e-Jacket and Cityscapes dress all in my stash!