One pattern, two ways – Cocos

I’m getting a little behind with my blogging at the moment. I’m about to show you what I entered for the ‘one pattern, two ways‘ challenge that formed the second week of Indie Pattern Month over at the Monthly Stitch.

The idea is to take one pattern and make it twice! You could either make two identical garments or you could make different variations. The garments must have come from an indie pattern company though.

Again, I chose to keep things fairly simple (sort of) by making a couple of Cocos by Tilly and the Buttons.

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Coco variations!

For the challenge I made the dress variation (top left) and the boat-necked top variation (bottom). I have already made the funnel necked version (here) earlier in the year so I now feel I’ve got my money’s worth out of this pattern.

It was a bit of a last minute decision to make a colour-blocked top. I was originally going to make a simple navy blue one. However, I remembered that I had a small amount of maroon ponte fabric left over from another project (my ‘in a twist‘ dress). There wasn’t enough of it to make a complete garment but there was still too much to throw away. This was the perfect opportunity to use it up. The Navy blue ponte fabric came from Lucky Fashions in Dewsbury during the Yorkshire Spoolettes 2nd meet-up.

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I cut a size 4 for the arms and bust and graded out to a size 5 for the waist and hips. This is the same alteration I did for my Coco funnel neck top. I probably would have got away with a straight size 4 in this fabric, but I was too lazy to retrace the pattern pieces!

I adapted the top pattern so that I could colour-block it. I thought I measured everything properly but as you can see…

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…the seam line goes right across my boobs! I thought I’d avoided that! To colour-block my top I drew a line at the under arm point on the front, back and arm patterns as this spot was easy to identify on all of them.

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Red line drawn at under arm point

I then measured down from that line at the point I wanted the seam line (which was too far down if I’m honest). I added seam allowances on either side of this line and then folded the pattern appropriately depending on the fabric I was cutting. I’m also far too lazy to produce separate pattern pieces!

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As you can see in the photo above I couldn’t quite get the pattern to fit on the fabric. I always forget how wide sleeves have to be! I had already cut out the front and back maroon pieces by this point so I just had to do a bit of fabric piecing to get my sleeves out. I knew it would be under the arms, so not noticeable, and I carried on regardless!

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Pieced arm pit!

I had a lot of issues sewing up the colour-blocked top and they were all to do with my stroppy sewing machine sewing up certain knit fabrics. It really doesn’t like sewing up thick jersey at all. Sewing the maroon fabric caused my thread to snap and break frequently. Sewing on the navy caused lots of skipped stitches. I got some good advice from fellow Monthly Stitchers though so I shall put that into practice next time. I do still have a lot of the navy left so there will have to be a next time!

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Now for the dress…

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This was soooo much quicker to sew up. I made up a straight size 4 and the fit is fine. My machine was quite happy sewing up this fabric which I bought from the knitting and Stitching show back in November. I used a narrow twill tape on the neckline and I’ve done a better job of it on the spotty dress because of it. It’s a simple hem but having the tape there helped me to fold it, press it and stitch it more neatly. I overlocked the neckline before assembling the dress which I wish I had done on my top as it’s so much neater.

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I had to take the above photo before it was completely finished. If you look closely you can see it hasn’t been hemmed. This was because it was my photographer’s bed time (he’s seven!) but it’s all finished now! Also, a grown-up photographer might have told me to move the watering can! It’s really annoying but I couldn’t crop it out very well! Never mind..

I love my new clothes! I have worn my top twice to work already and nobody has noticed the skipped stitches, my dodgy colour-blocking or my pieced underarms! I’ve decided to call it a success! I’ve worn the dress to work too although, as it’s a bit short, I wore it over leggings.

Unfortunately I have yet to be shortlisted in any of the Indie Pattern Month challenges (herrumph!), which isn’t surprising really as both my entries have been very simple. Very obvious when you’re up against people who produce two pairs of jeans (in a week?) and intricate blouses (Hila, I’m looking at you!). I’ve decided to ease off the pressure and not enter this week’s challenge (‘Hack it‘ – changing or mixing patterns up to produce something new) but I’m currently working on something for the last challenge (RTW copycat – copying a ready-to-wear outfit). This one is not simple but I have an idea which has just embedded in my brain and I have to run with it. I’m quite excited but there’s still a lot of work to do (and a pattern to buy!) so I really shouldn’t be sat here writing this blog post. So on that note I’m off…

 

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14 thoughts on “One pattern, two ways – Cocos

  1. I was going to write that I think you should go ahead & wear the Coco top & stare coldly at anyone who dared to comment, but you already did & no one said anything – hurray! (Really didn’t think they’d notice.) Good for you! We’re always so much more critical of ourselves than anyone else is. Love that fabric for the dress, which looks adorable, particularly with the leggings. (Oh, dear, summer has flown by already up there? Am so sorry. Have some of ours. Puh-lease!)

    • I would love some of your summer! If you could arrange that for me that would be fab – a day or two would do! To be fair temperatures weren’t too bad yesterday and today. I even managed to take my cardie off which was exciting! It’s been too warm for the Cocos this week but last week it was ideal weather (cold!).

      • Oh, my. Cannot imagine being able to do that in June anywhere around this country, including Alaska! But could be very wrong about that, so don’t quote me. Lol!
        🌞🌞🌞🌞🌞 (Hope this works for you.😉)

    • How many have you made? I think the trick is to use quite a thick knit fabric and not slippery t shirt knits. I’m really pleased I’ve managed to use up my scraps as I hate throwing them away but I don’t always know what to do with them!

  2. The colour blocking was a great way to use up left over bits of ponte and I smiled at your piecing under the arms – I have so done that before! The dress is lovely, too, and they are so different that they could easily be from different patterns, so job done!

  3. Pingback: Me Made May 2017 | applebymakes

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