…. and final! How many trials and mock ups does it take to create a “simple” tunic? Well, a degree of exactness in making clothes is ok. It’s ok to be picky; it’s ok to make multiple wearable muslins before the final look you wanted in the first place.
From left: final gray silk tunic, pucci-like print trial #2, sari fabric trial #1, and read the caption for the one on far right. I had to throw that in. Heh.
Final tunic! Another look at the original and the copy, fronts and the shoulder detail.
Nailed it, I think.
The first “muslin” was presented here and here as Part 1.
The “Pucci” print is trial #2.
The print is trial piece #2. It is silk charmeuse with a Pucci like print; the fabric was in my daughter’s stash but its mine now. She knows how to sew, chooses not to, and is very exacting about her clothes. I think one should be picky about sartorial choices. So, the details were finalized with #2 – it’s amazing how many details have to be perfected considering this is a minimal detail tunic. I’m referring to things like length of the piece, neck facings, the somewhat pegged shape of the lower portion and so on.
Now we look at the final. It is a silvery gray silk charmeuse tunic (purchased at High Fashion Fabrics in downtown Houston), made to look like the original COS brand. In the end, the piece was lengthened to dress length. This is a custom made piece, and custom clothing should be made with the best fabric possible. Might I add that the labor was free. Hmmph.
Note: It looks way, way better on my daughter, who cannot model it just yet. It will be worn with narrow black pants. The outfit is to be worn at a family event in the spring.
Pattern: Hacked version of Colette Patterns’ Sencha top, their earliest pattern release.
Here are some reminders of how to work with silk charmeuse. Feel free to add your own in the comment section:
- Use paper underneath the fabric to cut out, to contain the slipperiness (is that a word?). Newspaper is fine if the fabric is printed. On the light, solid gray, I used pattern making paper.
- Use silk pins – the finest you can find. Fortunately, I had a box of 1 3/8” long very thin pins in my pin “collection”. Fine pins do not leave holes in the fabric well, they do but much smaller ones which can be ironed out. In the pictures below, the finest pin is on the right (blue glass head).
- Use very sharp shears to cut.
- For basting, use the finest hand sewing needle you own, and silk thread since it leaves no holes and is easily pulled out.
- This is a general tip, but working on this project, I discovered that there was not enough fusible interfacing that was appropriate for the neck facings. The only other suitable one in my “interfacing collection” was a sew-in called “Armo Press”. Not sure where I got it, but I used it and it worked beautifully. If I did not have Armo Press, I would have used cotton fabric scraps. The moral is, its ok to think outside the box with interfacing choices; it’s the final result that matters. The other moral is — use what you have before buying new stuff.
- I used a piece of manila paper under the hem edge to turn it up. Otherwise, I would have ended up with press marks on the right side.
That’s it! I’m now ready to create something else. How’s everyone doing with hand made Christmas stuff? Hmmmm?
Have a great Holiday Season, everyone!
5 thoughts on “Gray Silk Tunic, Part 3”
My only handmade Christmas gifts were infinity scarves that were actually for my Mother’s birthday earlier this month. Your work is meticulous and the garment is beautiful! Great tips too.
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I love the blue print and the grey! Nice work and thanks for the tips. I use a Hot Hemmer for measuring and protecting the fabric when ironing up the hem.
Thank you, Faye! I’ll have to look up the “Hot Hemmer”. That’s a new one for me.
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I stumbled into a few yards of off white wool challis at the thrift store. Way too thin for clothes, just perfect for interfacing soft edges. It’s going to be very sad when I run out.
I know that I am almost 58 because I baste with silk thread. It really is worth it for the ease it sews with. I am still a cheap sewist, but I am impatient and can at least throw money at this problem to make it easier to do. Parenting my teens, not so much.
Holiday sewing: Scarf done. Tea towels printed and hemmed (Spoonflower fat quarter sale: thank you!) Star wars Jamas done. Quilt basting almost done. Dress for niece: fabric and trims chosen by her with a minimum of heartache for once. Pattern needs slight altering for style issues (already taken off a dress she adores) and we’re good to go. Might even have it done by Christmas.
Agewise, I got you beat by a few years. If that means that we use silk thread and such exquisite items for sewing, I’m happy to advance in years.
I should venture into a thrift shop to find yardage. The wool challis was a good find!!