Well readers, I must admit something. Kind Maria of Maria Denmark fame sent me some Onion patterns to test, write about, and giveaway a long time ago–like at the beginning of this whole T-shirt project thing, and I’ve totally been holding out on you. I kind of planned to get going on them at the start of fall because all 3 patterns really read fall/winter to me, but the summer heat was unrelenting and longer than average and this wacky thing called pregnancy really zapped my energy, so I have not got around to testing out the patterns until the past couple of weeks. Mea culpa. I’ll be making up for it in the next couple of months.
Pattern #1 is Onion 5032, a wrap or faux wrap top with an empire seam with gathered cap sleeve, 3/4 or plain, long sleeve flared slightly then gathered at the hem.
I really appreciate that the empire line on this top is lower than average (it’s almost low enough to look more like a peplum seam, and it certainly could be flared a little more to make it into a peplum top)…it makes altering for a full bust so much easier because you don’t have to first adjust the height of the empire seam. Jalie 2804, for instance made me crazy because the bust line was so high, I had to adjust it 3 times before I could even bother with doing something about my full bust. The fact that I could just do the FBA out of the gate and not worry was fantastic.
The crossover also extends all the way to the side seam. I don’t know that I’ve ever seen that before on this kind of top, and it’s kind of interesting. I have no idea what that does from a fit or drafting perspective, but it is nice to know that you won’t have the crossover cutting across your bust diagonally when you’re already cutting your top in half with the empire line.
As much as I am not a fan of empire lines in general, the addition of one makes it so easy to alter for maternity.
I also appreciate that the gathered sleeve cap is pretty minimal. I’m not a poofy sleeve kind of girl, but the amount that’s added in the cap is just enough to add a little interest and femininity. I used clear elastic to gather it which was really easy to do.
This fuchsia fabric was a score from the $3/lb table at Denver Fabrics. I love pound fabric–it’s like treasure hunting, and if you’re willing to look, occasionally you come up with something really lovely like this dense (probably) rayon/lycra. I initially thought it’d be a muslin, but it was so lovely to sew, I decided to finish it properly if it turned out even remotely decently. This version, I used the plain back, the gathered 3/4 sleeve, and the empire faux wrap. Though the pattern has different versions, they’re all drafted to fit into each other, so you really can pick and choose what details you like not unlike a Project Runway pattern.
I picked up this fine strawberry peach sherbet rayon jersey at Stone Mountain & Daughter on my 30 minute shopping spree there before we went to the Giants’ game (Yay–go Giants!) this summer. For it, I chose the long sleeve (but kept the 3/4 length) instead of the gathered cap. I don’t like elastic in sleeve hems–it always feels restrictive and binding to me, and ultimately leaves marks on me. Instead, I cut a strip of fabric 1.5″ wide to face the sleeve hems. Towards the front of the sleeve, I made 2 small buttonholes (which I had to do manually because my attachment was not working on this fine fabric). I stitched the facings into place on the wrong sides of the sleeves, and threaded through strings I made from 1.25″X15″ strips of fabric, serged, turned, pressed, and knotted. The strings are the mechanism for gathering the hem–I like that this adds a little decorative element, and it’s a lot more comfortable on my arms.
Overall, this is a great pattern with a lot of room for modification and variation. My only beef about it is that the neckline is low. I traced off the highest line, did a 1/2″ petite adjustment, and it’s still too low to wear without a cami. Not a big deal–this is rather a common problem on this type of pattern.
My full review of the pattern is here.
As for the giveaway, I have a fresh, sealed copy of this pattern ready to go into your own stash. I’ll ship internationally, so all you lovely ladies reading in Oz and elsewhere can participate.
To enter, I want to know about your Onion patterns experience. Have you sewn any Onion patterns before? If you haven’t, take a browse around Maria’s website ShopOnion, and dream a little–what looks fun, how would you make it up? Please comment on this post so I can stay unconfused and fair. Comments will be open until 7 pm mountain time on Sunday, November 11th.