New Look 6323 – Love this tunic pattern

This tunic and Butterick 5954 are officially my go-to patterns for knit tunics. A love affair!

I used view B: gathered back, long sleeves, and a bit of sharkbite at the side seam. BTW, I tried to find this pattern online so I could supply a link. And it must be getting scarce – it’s not on Pattern Review or the Simplicity site. But it’s still on
The back curved seam and gathered skirt are just so  appealing. And add a little sass walking away…
 And the hi-lo hem is just about perfect. Unexpected and so much fun.
Sewing notes:
  • This is size 12. My very first version, in lagoona interlock, was size 14, and it was just too big for me.
  • I dropped the center front by 1 3/4″, trued out to the sides. This decreases the sharkbite effect a little bit and brings the front below the crotch of my pants. Just my preference – I don’t care for tops that stop just above the crotch. IMHO, so unflattering…
  • This wonderful fabric is a cotton/rayon jersey from Fabric Mart. It has 80% stretch horizontally and 10% along the selvedge. Fabric Mart doesn’t give fabric weights, but I would put this at 6 – 8 oz. It’s not sticky (the bane of cotton/spandex), due to the rayon content.

I’m wearing my Essex linen/cotton wide-leg pants in the pics above. But this tunic is also great with my Love Notions Sabrina Slims. 
Last spring I made this in black spun cotton/rayon jersey from Girl Charlee, and for some reason I never blogged it – but I wore it in  in my post on those Slims…  

The black jersey is 6.5 oz. and has 50% horizontal stretch. I hope it comes back to GC, it’s so nice for tops. Funny story: I wore the outfit below to my annual checkup in May – when my doctor walked in, she said “you’ve lost weight”. Nooo, but I’ll take it!

So – Election Day tomorrow! I voted by mail several weeks ago, rather than try to stand in line with my cane (would they take it away at the door?). I find voting to be so empowering and levelling at the same time – the country feels like a small community when we do this.
And I’m looking forward to watching the election results all day tomorrow to see if I won 🙂
Bye for now – Coco

Edited to add: Stirswatersblue on Pattern Review let me know that this pattern has been re-released as New Look 6439 – and sure enough, the exact pattern!

New Look 6936 – a found object…

I’ve been on a bit of a quest lately, trying to get the upper hand on all that fabric stashed in bins in the loft. Because so much of it is pieces and bits. Why have I been keeping it all?

My first move was to take a critical look in my closet, which is home to fewer garments than it housed in January – the result of my closet bust and donation gig. But what about those things I really like, mostly because of the fabric, but don’t wear?

I’ve taken my favorites and actually redrafted/resewn a lot of them. Whatever didn’t make the cut got tossed. For good.

When I say tossed – I donate anything that’s wearable. What doesn’t suit me might be a glad find for someone else.

Anyway – this morning I pulled out the bin that’s dedicated to knit ‘scraps’ and remnants. And I came across a whole dress! I made this for Jungle January 2016. But I guess I didn’t like it 🙂 I’ve made it twice in the past, 2012 and 2013, and liked both dresses. I donated the short version from 2012, because I just didn’t wear it, and I had no occasions in the offing. But the 2013 version is still in play.

Now – this one. I pulled it out – it was totally put together but had unfinished sleeves, hem, and waist casing. And an incredibly high neckline! I trimmed the latter, bound it with navy poly crepe, and attacked all the rest. And voila – a dress I really like. In fact, I’m wearing it as I write.

This is a nice pattern with lots of options:

On to my morning’s work…

This ITY knit jersey is from Fabric Mart, and I had 5 yards with which to work. Which was a good thing, because I didn’t want to end up with a very large lily splashed across the girls or my fantail. Large prints can be a real challenge! But I think I handled this one pretty well.

So, mark one up for a great save…this is perfect for home, very comfortable, keeps me just warm enough.

While messing around in that bin, I found loads of ITY remnants that would work together. So now I’m think about doing a version of Marcy Tilton’s Vogue 9108, which includes the top, dress, and leggings. I bought the pattern when it came out, it’s one of the few Marcy Tilton art-to-wear patterns that I really like. What fun piecing ops and such becoming lines.

However, even this one has some features that I’ll decline – like the back treatment. Looks great on the model, but I cannot even imagine how those straps would work for me in real life. I’ll try to capture the lovely lines of the back skirt, in a back bodice that’s comfortable and wearable.

Happy Tuesday! Coco

Loving the Love Notions Sabrina Slims…

Top: New Look 6323

One or two was not enough…more Sabrina Slims!

I admit that sewing has slowed down a bit in the loft. I think it’s because I’m really enjoying my ‘culled’ closet. It has only my very favorite clothes now – and it’s so easy to choose something to wear. Who would have known? Less is more?

Well, not always. I really love these Sabrina Slims. As soon as I finished my first pair(s), I ordered a couple fabrics to add some new fun to my spring and summer wardrobe. Of course I wanted white – it’s seasonless down here. And I wanted a floral print, because the inspiration pics on the web were so nice when done in a print. Oh, and apparently floral pants on trending this spring. Like I need an excuse…

I used a medium weight (10 oz) cotton spandex knit from Girl Charlee for the white pair. It has 4-way stretch and is perfect for these pants. And as long as I was doing repeats, I made another McCalls 6987 tunic to go with. I don’t see much of this tunic on the web, and I imagine it’s not terribly popular – the envelope pic is awful. But I really like it. Done in challis, it’s weightless and just floats around.

And here’s is the floral print! I love it. 

This is also a cotton spandex knit from Girl Charlee – mid-weight at 8.5 oz, with 4-way stretch.

Let’s see – what else… Last weekend I put down 100 lbs. of fertilizer in the garden. Not an easy task! But it’s that time of year, and I need to fertilize ahead of the heavy summer rains. The palms are putting out flower spathes (pollen everywhere), and the mahogany trees have shed their leaves and are sprouting a beautiful new green canopy. The plants are hungry!
Other than that I’ve been just monkeying around. A monkey muslin…
Ciao! Coco

New Look 6323 Tunic full of giraffes…

I’m covered in little giraffes! When I got this border print ITY from Fabric Mart last year, I thought the giraffes were bigger. But I think they’re adorable as they are. It’s just taken me a while to find a pattern that would work – the print on the 6″ wide border runs vertically, and the main print runs horizontally. Head spin…

New Look 6323 is perfect. It’s very similar to the Butterick 5954 tunic that I’ve made 5 times. But this one has a gathered back option that I just love.

Honestly, I had kind of forgotten I had it. I made it once last year in interlock jersey, and the fit in size 14 was really bad. Much too large. Plus I really disliked the color of the fabric, and it was donated.

This go ’round I used the size 12 – and it’s a great fit. I have the pattern in a download file, so I reprinted it and drafted the new size.

How about those sleeves! I used the border down the center of the sleeves and on the neckline binding. I had to do something to break up the herd running all over the tunic. It just took a little redrafting of the sleeve (I kept the original instead of cutting it apart):

From the sleeve – the giraffes really are nice, they have a good attitude. I know the colors look black, white, and coral, but that’s really a deep navy. So I’m wearing my indigo jeans and Rocket Dog flip-flops 🙂

Now that I’ve rediscovered this pattern, I’ve already sewn it again, in solid black rayon jersey. Which I won’t show here – black is impossible to photograph.

The back detail is also hard to capture, but it looks great in real life.
I love Jungle January! Ciao – Coco

New Look 6340 Easy Dress – Jungle January!

I love Jungle January, hosted by Pretty Grievances. It’s now in it’s 4th year. Thanks Anne!

I’m a real enthusiast, so I decided to photograph my first dress outside at night. Hoping for some alligator eyes or a night creature.

All I got was mosquitoes. Back in the house…

Early this morning I tried this again. Much better. No alligators but no mosquitoes either. This is the New Look 6340 Easy Dress, taken to a maxi length. It’s the same pattern I used to make a couple tunics last year.

And done in a very lightweight rayon/poly/spandex ponte de roma from Girl Charlee. It’s extremely soft and comfortable, not at all hot – I think I’ll be able to wear it fall and winter down here.

I got a little surprise while sewing this. I was rockin’ and rollin’ – made the pockets and ties, ran gathering stitches around the sleeve caps, sewed the shoulder seams, and attached the facing…then turned back the facing to find this little white spot near the front neckline…

Tried to pick it off – but no, it’s not lint. It’s a misprint, and it repeats further down the dress. This is why I have permanent Micro pens!


It’s hard to see the details on this print, so a couple pics on Emile.

Topstitching around the neckline and on the back facing.

A few sewing notes:

  • Made view D in size 12, and had just the right amount of ease for this knit fabric. I added 20″ to make it maxi length and cured the lines of the skirt from waist to hemline.
  • I altered the sleeve just slightly, to get a nice elbow-length sleeve. I made it 15″ long from the shoulder notch to the unfinished bottom edge, and dropped the sleeve edges straight down from the armhole, i.e., removed the shaping.
  • Inserted the sleeves flat, rather than set-in, and sewed the underarm and dress sides in one continuous seam. 
    • To make the ties, I cut 2″ x 31″ strips vertically with the grainline to diminish stretching.
    • And turned the ties with the Dritz Quick Turn tool, and a chopstick!

    Parting shot: the fellas love their Christmas gift of Hudson pants, and my son wants more in other colors. I’m so complimented!

    I’m back to the jungle, bye for now! Coco