It’s all About the Tees – Part II

More T-shirts!  These are the first of the “new to me” patterns.  I’ll start with the Grainline Lark Tee.  I bought this pattern a year or so ago, but have only made one tee from it, and that was for a friend!  I had the PDF pattern, and sent the copyshop off to the other half to print for me at the office on their nice big plotter.   It was about time to use the pattern for myself, I went with the short sleeve, v-neck version.

stripe lark 1
Grainline Lark Tee

I traced the 12, based on my high bust measurement, and made a FBA as described on Maria Denmark’s website.  There’s only one thing that’s constantly bugging me, there is a fold of fabric that ends up looking like I need to dart it out at the armhole.  I have already done that in paper, but the little bugger is still there!  Any tips, tee shirt gurus??  The fabric for this one came from the NEC, I forget exactly which stall.  I love the graduated sizes of the white and black stripes, it’s a viscose/modal jersey, soft and drapey and lovely to wear.

stripe lark 3

I’m really happy with how it all turned out, I have to admit I was a little worried going with such a “small” size!  But it worked!  The sleeves are the perfect length, and I like the fit on the body, especially the looseness around the waist and hips.  The instructions are pretty good, the neckband went in very well too.  I just need to remember the seam allowance on this pattern is very, very small, only 6mm!  I forgot that on the first seam, and sewed the shoulders at 1cm instead…  It doesn’t seem to have done any damage, even the sleeve head went in ok.

stripe lark 2

The second tee for today is one I know I will be making loads more of!  I downloaded the Basic Instinct Tee from Sasha at SecondoPiano – finally!!  I’d seen lots of versions of the tee on Instagram (just search the hastag #basicinstincttee) and really liked the relaxed fit that everyone was achieving.  While a fitted tee is great, I like a loose one more for the summer.  I had one more blue and white striped jersey from Montreux Fabric to use, this one has a cool double thin white stripe on a navy blue ground.  The fibre content is polyester/viscose, I try not to buy polyester, but the stripe was too good to pass up!

stripe instinct 3
Basic Instinct Tee

Sasha has written brilliant instructions, and has spent a lot of time making sure her tee can be made with lots of different stripe patterns, and that those stripes will line up everywhere.  If you take the time to do it..  I have to hang my head and say I ignored those bits of the pattern and instructions and just ploughed on (I really really wanted to wear this tee – fast).  I promise that the next one I do I will definitely follow the stripe matching instructions.  The pattern is simple, round neck, short sleeves and relaxed, loose fit throughout.  It’s incredibly comfortable!  I don’t usually go for high necklines like this, I don’t like the feel of fabric so close to my neck, but this is just fine, even for a fusspot like me!

stripe instinct 2

I made the XL, no FBA, no adjustments – next time I think I’ll size down, see how it goes.  It all went together incredibly well, great instructions and very well drafted pattern.  I highly recommend this pattern, subscribe and you’re in business!  This is the perfect pattern for allotment tees, the loose fit means more comfort in the heat & the round neck keeps the sun off me.  I have to make lots and lots more!  Thanks Sasha, for a brilliant little tee pattern!

stripe instinct 1
There they go again, I just cannot keep my hands out of my pockets!

I have one more tee to show off, and I still cannot decide on my favourite!  I think I might need to get a few plain coloured tops now though, there are enough stripes!  What’s your favourite t-shirt pattern to make?



Author: Anne W

I love fabric, and sewing. And I could do nothing else but sew, all day, every day, if I could!

13 thoughts on “It’s all About the Tees – Part II”

  1. Hi Ann! Thank you so much for the nice things you said about my pattern 🙂 I tried to make a t-shirt that is a little bit different from the other patterns out there. This pattern is free and I didn’t want for it to enter in competition with other paid patterns. It has a more relaxed fit and if your fabric is light, drapey and with lots of stretch it would feel even more relaxed. If you feel it to be too big on your shoulders you should maybe go a size down, otherwise just taking it in at the sides (where I put all the “extra ease”) should make it more fitted 😉
    Ps : those are some lovely stripes!

    1. Thanks Sasha, I think I may go a size down, but then again, I love that it’s loose, especially when we’ve been having such high temperatures! I mean, summer in the UK is usually about 2 weeks long, and those aren’t necessarily consecutive weeks – or even days! But here we sit, with no rain in my area since April 27 and temperatures between 20 and 30 C. So your relaxed fit tee is getting lots of wear!!

  2. I have 2 favourites – one by Cashmerette (the Concord) and the other is the Women’s Tee by Jalie. Both of these patterns fit me perfectly with almost no fiddling. Before these 2 I always had to add a dart (usually 2 – a french dart and one through the armhole) Love your tees! I love your navy striped one especially 🙂

  3. For the extra fold at the armpit, try looking in the mirror as you pick up the shoulder seam slightly… you may need to take a slightly deeper seam there to eliminate the extra fabric that is hanging in folds. Peggy Sagers from Silouhette Patterns demonstrates that in a lot of her fitting videos… see YouTube. Both tee shirts are lovely… colors are right up my alley.

    1. I think it;s because of the rotated FBA I did, it means there’s more fabric across the chest, which means the armhole is further away from the body… I recon a simple dart will do the trick, or I could rotate it to the waist and then remove from the side seam….

  4. I get that annoying fold on all my t shirts too, even RTW ones. But I think most people don’t notice it at all – your t shirts look very professional with beautiful necklines!

    1. Thanks! No, most people wouldn’t notice at all, and it only bothers me when I see it in photos! Guess I know the answer then… 😉

    1. Argh, pressed enter too early….

      If the fold really bothers you, maybe trying one of the patterns designed specifically for curvy women like Cashmerette would be the easiest solution.

      If you want to take a DIY approach, maybe the approach I ended up using may help a little. I used the pivot & slide alteration method. Although I did it specifically to match stripes, I now use it for stripelses Ts as well. Sorry, don’t have proper tutorial, but I did include photos of shape comparison between my darted knit block vs the dartless one. Hopefully the shape comparison alone will help you figure out what to try:

      1. Cool, I’ll take a look. Like you say, most people wouldn’t notice it at all. I should probably use my block more, might not have that problem…

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