Although there are a few Hot Patterns in my stash, I haven’t actually sewn many of them. They are multi-sized patterns, and because I am relatively inexperienced with their sizing, I have often been too lazy to trace and but unwilling to cut. Some are now available as pdf downloads. I am quite happy to print, tape and cut those! I have the Fast and Fabulous Trilogy Shift Dress, Tunic and Top a try.
The website describes this pattern as follows:Make yourself these 3 easy pieces, perfect for drape-y wovens like rayon challis, charmeuse, soft linen, silk(y) twill, crepe or gauze, but also fab in fluid knits like silk(y) jersey, rayon, or linen jersey. Semi-fitted, pull-on styles have a gently shaped silhouette, with center front & back seams. ‘V’ neckline and cut-on cap sleeves are finished with self fabric binding. Choose your perfect length; a midi-length dress, a mid-thigh tunic, or a lower-hiplength top. All versions feature a deep pleat folded into the front yoke for that essential bust shaping, plus a curved front and straight back hemline. Showcase those eye-catching prints or your favorite solid colors in these fabulously breezy pieces…wear the dress ‘as-is’ or belted; try the tunic over a crisp cropped pant or a boyfriend jean, and team the top with a slouchy wide leg trouser or a long, lean midi skirt for effortless chic.
Firstly, if you are ordering a pdf download from Hot Patterns, make certain that you order the correct paper size for the country that you live in. This is very important. If you don’t you will have huge frustrations when it comes to taping the pattern together. (As a side note, there are some free pdf patterns by Hot Patterns on the Fabric.com website – these are all designed to print on letter size paper rather than A4, so Australians, be careful with taping if you use those patterns. One edge will need trimming but the others will need a gap filled. I can’t remember which is which right now). Then you need to choose size.
As I’ve mentioned before, choosing size can be tricky. Hot Patterns have a myriad of measurements on their sizing chart to help you to decide. I cannot remember finding finished measurements printed on the pattern pieces, but I could of course have just pulled out a tape measure and used that to check, remembering to subtract seam allowances. I could have chosen by high bust measurement, as is often advised. In the end I just went with size 14, which was closest to my measurements. I was pretty sure that it would be too big for me, but had an ulterior motive. I thought that this fabric would be great for my Mum.
The fabric is a woven viscose, and I bought it as a remnant so was working with a set amount of fabric. I cannot for the life of me remember where I bought it, even though it wasn’t very long ago. Darn Cheap Fabrics? The Cloth Shop? Spotlight? Not sure. There was just enough for the top.
Because I am a relative newby to Hot Patterns, I followed the instructions. I found that they worked quite well. I particularly like the deep front pleat that is caught into the shoulder seams. I bound the neckline after sewing the centre back and shoulder seams, then sewed the centre front seam, resulting in a lovely crisp V. As usual I applied binding to the wrong side before wrapping it around and topstitching on the right side. Sewing was very quick – I think that the “Fast and Fabulous” tag is quite right. The overall silhouette of the top is similar to the True Bias Sutton blouse and the In House Patterns Kimono top, but there are enough subtle differences for me to be happy to have this pattern as well.
So the end verdict – yes, this top is about two sizes too big for me, as I suspected it would be, which makes it perfect for Mum. It looks terrific on her and I’m sure that it will be worn quite a bit in the hot town she lives in. And as for me? I plan to sew myself the dress – in size 10. This top was the first garment I sewed in 2016. A pretty good start to the year!