Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Pattern Review Simplicity 1318

by Tina Chester

I love kimonos and soft flowy dressing, especially in the
summer. I thought this would be a great cover up for going to
dinner or a social event. My plan was to make it out of a silk fabric for the Springfield NG challenge but decided a prototype was needed to make sure I really liked it. I found
a bold summery print at Hancock Fabrics that had the right drape and was on sale. My only concern was it being polyester, which I rarely sew with these days. Hey, it is just a prototype, so why not. More on that decision later. The pattern is very easy. I made View C and barely squeaked it out of 2 yds (60 wide) by creative
placement of the bands. I decided to sew French Seams since that is what the silk version would need. The only issue I had doing with this type of seam was where the underarm seams all came together. I left a small opening and went back at the end and closed it up, after all the seams were sewn. I used a lightweight interfacing on the bands. I did not follow the directions on the band, however, since I wanted a cleaner finish. They want you to attach the band facing, turn under the seam allowance, and hand stitch it in place. Anyone who knows me knows I do not do hand stitching if at all possible, and to me it was a very ‘loving hands at home’ look. So instead I applied Steam a Seam to the facing seam allowance and pressed it under. Then I top stitched in place, making a cleaner and more commercial finish. I did the same thing with the sleeve bands and the hems.
My only issue making this pattern was with the fabric choice. The neck portion of the band and its facing really needed to be steamed and shaped around a ham to get the right shaping, and polyester is just not easy to work with in that way. After a LOT of steaming and pressing, I finally got it to look right, but it reinforced my opinion on not working with polyester unless I really have to. The final product is cute and easy to wear and I just bought a piece of silk cotton voile to make the ‘real’ one.
The pattern comes with 4 versions and two band styles. I made the long one but this would be so cute in the shorter version. If you are looking for an easy project with no fitting needed, I would definitely give this pattern a try. 

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