This pattern has been out for a little while. Despite it having one of the features that usually makes me hit the ‘buy’ button very quickly – that V-Neck – it took me a little while to purchase it and sew it up. But once I started, I made three! Details on the pattern are as follows:
The Tabor V-Neck is a simple yet versatile style that is as dressed up or casual as you’d like to make it. It is a loose fitting, drop shoulder tee or sweater that is built for comfort while looking smart. With many different options for sleeves, necklines and body lengths, you can make a Tabor V-neck for every season. Due to its wide, oversized body width, the Tabor V-Neck T-shirts are most flattering when sewn in a light-weight, fluid knit fabric with at least 25% stretch such as rayon, bamboo or soy knits while the sweaters are best with sweater knits that also have at least 25% stretch however, do not have a high lycra content (6% or above) or have too much stretch recovery. This is to allow the wide neckband to perform at its finest without puckering or gathering.
There are five versions of this top – some designed for lighter weight fabrics than others. It can be sewn sleeveless, with sleeve cuffs, or with long fitted sleeves. The hemline can be cropped, curved or straight across with a split. The neckband treatment also varies depending on the version chosen.
I started with View 4: A semi-deep V-neck with a 2”/5cm wide lapped neckband. It also features a split hem with vented sides and narrow, long sleeves. It works best with sweater knits that do not have too much structure or stretch recovery.
Note that bit about not sewing the sweaters in knits with a high lycra content or too much stretch recovery. I ignored that advice, choosing to sew my sweater in a high quality ponte that also had high stretch recovery. I should have followed that advice. It’s there for a reason.
Getting the wide neckband to sit nicely was such a struggle in this fabric! I had minor issues at the front, but it was at the back of the neckline, where the attached edge is stretched much more than the folded edge, that it became a big issue. Before I used my much loved strategy of ‘steam the heck out of it’ it was a big puckered mess. Perseverance paid off, and the final result was quite okay, but take it from me – follow the fabric recommendations if you’re sewing the wide lapped neckband!
I also had big issues sewing and hemming this fabric. My stitches started off looking like this:
Rest assured that it’s the same fabric – phone camera behaved weirdly under artificial light. Look at all those skipped stitches! Aarrgghh! I did all the usual things – fresh (universal) needle, tried most other types of needles that were in my drawer, rethreaded the machine, cleaned the machine, rethreaded it again…then went to the shops the next day and bought a sharps needle. It made all the difference.
What a lovely zig-zag! So, onto my next version. I thought that I should give credit to the fabric recommendations, so sewed up the cropped, sleeveless sweater version, also with the wide lapped neckband, but this time from french terry remnants that were in stash.
So fast! So EASY! That neckband attached without any issues at all!
Actually, I think that it took longer to cut this out and pin it together than to sew it, as I needed to take stripe matching into account. I finished edges with a zig-zag stitch again (I often prefer it to a twin needle).
The weeks rolled by, then I pulled out the pattern again to sew a summer weight version from a rayon knit piece I’d picked up at Rathdowne Fabrics. This is the tee version 2 with the narrow lapped neckband.
V-neckbands in knits are often a little bit tricky, I won’t deny. You need to take your time, reinforce as instructed, and be prepared to unpick and re-do a little. That steam iron also comes in handy.
I chose to topstitch outside the neckband to secure the seam allowances and keep it sitting flat, but it’s not perfect. However, it’s acceptable.
Fabric limitations forced me to introduce a centre back seam this time around. Otherwise, it’s sewn as per the pattern (and as per the excellent instructions). All three versions are the same size, but I can’t remember off hand what that size is! I’d have to dig out the pattern to check. It’s a loose fitting body, so my main focus was on getting the shoulder and upper chest fit to work for me. I am happy with the fit and will sew the same size in future.
So there you go – three Tabor V-Necks! This is definitely a workhorse pattern and a very useful basic. It’s also good value for money with all the options that are included.
Just remember – sew it in the recommended fabrics! And it’s always a good idea to iron folded garments before they are photographed…