There are some design features that I’m just a sucker for. They may fall in or out of favor with prevailing trends, but I’ll seek them out. Yokes are one and gathers are the other, and providence help me if a pattern has both.
Recently, two (!) such patterns crossed my sewing table. The first and more successful one is Simplicity 3964. I have searched high and low for this out-of-print pattern on and off for a few years with very little luck until 1. I finally found a size-too-small version on Etsy that I bought anyway and 2. shortly after, I won the right-sized version from Philippa’s amazingly generous Sew Grateful giveaway. (Thank you again, Philippa!)
I’m slightly embarrassed to say that I started tracing and sewing the instant it was delivered…
I used an embroidered white cotton from Our Fabric Stash for the body and sleeves, and some plain white cotton lined with the embroidered fabric for the inset and yoke pieces. Both fabrics are pretty rumply, but I don’t mind it on this top.
I needed the length of the larger size through the shoulders, but had to take out quite a bit of ease at the top of the side seams. There is still quite a bit of ease in the back, even though the bust is pretty fitted now.
You can see the back ease in action as I kick somebody’s emptied vodka bottle out of the frame. Thanks for the action shot, Nathan! (Semi-related side note: I’m sure you all saw, but I laughed HEARTILY at Katy & Laney’s 1st anniversary blooper reel.)
The back is closed by ties, but it looks like even my gigantic dome could fit through the neck opening. The visual break provided by the ties is kind of nice, though.
I took my time on the inset point, and sewed one side of it at a time instead of pivoting. I think this made a world of difference. I love this design, and it looks just as I would have hoped. Even though it’s distinctive, I plan on making a tunic or dress length version.
Stay tuned for Part II! And now I must take a poll; what design features do you love beyond reason or trends? Have they stayed the same through the years?