A properly fitting peplum (seam snug at the waist, skirt at the right length and proportion) is a thing of wonder. It can suggest an hourglass figure, or accentuate one that already exists. Even better if it's in a forgiving, comfortable knit and can be whipped up in a single evening for a quick sewing high!
The pattern: Cake Patterns Hummingbird Peplum Top and Straight Skirt 0289. It's shipping this week, in case you're wondering! (Full disclosure: I'm the envelope illustrator for Cake Patterns and I designed the envelope and instructions along with my husband ... but I only work with Steph because I love me some Cake, and I sewed this top on my own time!)
Pattern Sizing: The top is sized for a 30-59 inch full bust, and is also customized by actual waist size and front waist length (to ensure the peplum sits exactly at the waist).
- My full bust is 38.5", so I chose the full bust size 35, then selected my actual front waist (17") and waist (29") sizes. Thanks to this size magic, the bust and waist fit perfectly in front, no FBA needed!
- For the peplum, I chose the 20s size (proportioned for waist sizes in the 20s range), which created a neat little peplum perfect for wear over skirts. I think next time I will make the slightly longer 30s range peplum, for extra length over jeans... though it works fine as is, too... here it is at work on Friday:
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Absolutely!
Were the instructions easy to follow? Again, rather surreal following along with my own illustrations (and Steph's instructions), but I find them quite clear and thorough if I do say so myself!
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? My favorite part is the unique little four-leaf-clover-shaped peplum drape (in both front and back).
Fabric: Soft, light-weight black & white polka dot ITY jersey from Spandex House, leftover from making maternity tops some time back. Excellent stretch and recovery, and it drapes nicely for the peplum (which I did not hem, as this fabric is not prone to fraying).
Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: Zip. Nope. None. A first for me, really!
Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? Oh yes and yes! I'm going to make my next version in true Hummingbird colors, I'm starting to get bored with all my monochromatic sewing I've been doing lately... this is a rayon-lycra knit I got at Mood last weekend:
Wear for: Everything all the time. Dress it up with a pencil skirt (like the matching Hummingbird skirt I'm working on now!), dress it down with some jeans. Also good for hanging out with bubble-blowing toddlers:
A final thought: You know, I was looking again at the tagline for Cake and it occurred to me why I jumped on board so enthusiastically when Steph approached me about working on the art and design. "Sewable wearable basics for busy women—always with pockets." (What she doesn't need to say there is that Cake Patterns are fun, vintage-inspired and figure-flattering, too!)
Well, that busy woman is me—I sewed this top after a long day of work, followed by a long evening of trying to get my toddler to do all her medical treatments and finally go to sleep ... I didn't start sewing til past 10, so didn't finish til past midnight. But the satisfaction of being able to wear it to work in the morning was so worth it!
P.S. For those of you who bought the pattern during the presale or since, and are wondering when you'll get your itchy hands on it... it's shipping this week, in big pretty green, pink, orange, and blue envelopes!
P.P.S. I'm feeling seriously pleased with myself for already sewing two tops and refashioning a cardigan this month–so good to get back to my machine after my ridiculously long hiatus!!!
P.P.P.S. In case you're wondering why my photos look so much better than usual, I was visiting my mom in Massachusetts... so I borrowed her porch and her Canon Rebel camera! She's promised to let me hold onto it a few weeks more, too.