Monday, May 26, 2014

Print Block Tee - Vogue 9004

I actually got some sewing done on this long weekend!

This pattern, Vogue 9004, came out in the most recent batch of Spring Vogues. It's similar to an Au Bonheur tee I made some time ago. This pattern is designed for woven fabrics, but I made it with a knit.

I wear knit tops much more than I wear tops made from wovens. But that's just me.

The pattern says that it is a Fitted Top, and you should believe it. Check the finished bust and hip measurements on the pattern tissue before you cut it out.


The fabric I used is a double knit from JoAnns. One side is striped and the other has polka dots. Unlike most double knits, which have stability, this is a very unstable, stretchy knit. It has all the earmarks of a poor quality knit, and I should have thought twice before ordering it by mail. The fabric is "droopy" (rather than drapey), and it easily stretches out of shape. It also had flaws, which I was able to cut around, but I didn't notice until long after I'd ordered it. I will use it for testing patterns, like this one, since I have more left over.

I used both sides of the fabric to "print block" the tee. (Print blocking is similar to color blocking, but with prints.)

Alterations and Modifications

  • I made view B, but used the sleeves from view C.
  • I selected the size based on negative ease, which is how I like to fit a knit.
  • I should say, I sorta used the sleeves from view C. I lengthened them to 3/4 length. I omitted the slit. Also, this top was designed for wovens, so the short sleeve is a bit loose at the hem. I tapered it considerably.
  • I did not do an FBA. The pattern comes with a 1" bust dart, which I did not sew. This fabric had some stretch to it, so I eased the dart at the side seam. (I will sew a dart on a more stable knit, such as a ponte.)
  • I wanted to "pull" the top in a bit at the armscye (similar to making a small dart), so I reduced the sleeve cap a bit, just in that location.
  • I removed quite a bit of fullness at the hip - at the side seams.
  • I narrowed the shoulder seam by 1/2"!!! This is FAR less than usual, so maybe Vogue is now drafting for a narrower shoulder!
  • I did not sew in the back shoulder dart—I eased in the fullness.
  • As this knit is very stretchy, I stabilized the (horizontal) shoulder seams with twill tape.
  • As this knit is very unstable and floppy, it would not support the notch at the front neckline. I cut the notch off and, instead of facings, finished the neck with a binding.
  • I alternated the print around the body—I did the same for the 2-piece sleeves. (It creates sort of a harlequin effect.)
  • I omitted the zipper.

I think that's it. It just goes to show that, even a fairly simple top, can require quite a few alterations to fit properly.


This is a very nicely drafted top! I will definitely make it again, preferably from a better quality fabric. This design is a great way to use those two-sided fabrics that we all have in our stashes.

Fun new shoes!

What Else?

That's not the only sewing I accomplished this weekend. I cut out some leggings, and I have almost completed a project that I will be showing early next month. It is part of a larger project that includes other bloggers, so there will be a big reveal in the next couple of weeks and a blog tour.


I want to thank my (very well mannered) readers for not commenting on my recent weight gain. I definitely have suffered in that realm since starting my new job, and I have experienced adverse health ramifications as a result. But I am not giving up—I am working on finding more work/life balance. I have no plans to go into hiding or stop blogging.

I am participating in a corporate health initiative that begins next week and lasts for over 3 months. As part of this project, I pulled together a team of 7 like-minded colleagues. We will be wearing pedometers and attempting to walk at least 10,000 steps (or equivalent) every day. I have been wearing my pedometer already and, on days I am in Mountain View, I walk on average between 12,000 and 16,000 steps. I move considerably less on other days, so I will be working on consistency.

We were asked to come up with a name for our team and, as we are all writers, another colleague suggested Run on Sentences. As the team captain, I guess that makes me the Queen of Run on Sentences. ;)

Happy Week!