Saturday, June 28, 2014

Chevron squiggle overload: the updated Cake Patterns free Tee pattern

Cake Patterns "The Tee" V neck with micro pocket

I actually made this Tee a month ago while I was working on the updated envelope art, but couldn't share officially until the pattern was out in the wild (available now as a free PDF via Craftsy, or a printed (and of course not-free) paper pattern via Etsy.

As you all know, I illustrate for Cake Patterns and thus have access to the patterns for free, so this isn't an objective review or anything, but I don't get paid to sew Cake and I made this for fun and my opinion is my own, and etc. So when I tell you I love this Tee pattern—I mean it!

The basics

Pattern: The Tee, Cake Patterns Riff No. 2224. A knit custom-fit and custom-length T-shirt with cut-on sleeves, hem band, V-neck or round neck options and micro pocket options. I made the single-pocket V-neck version in a 26" length (I wanted an almost tunic-length top):

Fabric: 1 yard of a really uncooperative (if totally fun) thin chevron printed rayon-spandex knit from Tex Styles in Austin, Texas. The pattern wasn't even SLIGHTLY close to on-grain at all, so I cut it to make the lines look as straight as possible. And I used a bit of chevron for the pocket to look like an "M" for "Mikhaela."

Size: I made the size 35, with 38" bust and 39" hips and a 26" length. I normally would do a snug waist with negative ease, but since this fabric was so tissue thin I only brought the waist in to 33" at the fit check step.

Cake Patterns "The Tee" V neck with micro pocket

Modifications: No modifications, except those directed in the pattern (bringing in the waist slightly for a closer fit during the fit check stage).

Cake Patterns "The Tee" V neck with micro pocket

Construction notes: This is a very quick and satisfying make—no sleeve setting required. Cutting out the recalcitrant fabric was probably the hardest part.

The round neckline version would have been quicker, but I love a V-neck and have never made one before, so decided to try it out and am happy I did. I just followed the written instructions, but Steph recently posted a step-by-step photo tutorial for mitered V-necks that breaks it down more clearly for beginners.

The pattern also comes with a little pressing template that makes getting perfectly shaped little pockets much easier.

Wear: I've been wearing this versatile basic constantly—with jeans, skirts, whatever. Next time I might make it a little longer to be more tunic-length for over leggings. I probably SHOULD make a solid-colored one as I need some plainer Ts, but I'm sure I'll go for a pattern again.

Cake Patterns "The Tee" V neck with micro pocket

So what are you waiting for? Get yourself a free Tee pattern!

8 comments:

  1. Very cute! Thanks for highlighting the pattern!

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  2. Nice!! I am always down for sewing a quick and easy basic tee. Yours looks great!

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  3. Love the cut on sleeve. I need some new tees.

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    Replies
    1. I am so addicted to cut on sleeves now!

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  4. Next one in polka dots? ;-) This looks GREAT! Your version has me wanting to try this. I love my plantain tees, but this has a really cute shape! Love those dolman sleeves.

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    1. Ha, I am TRYING to avoid always doing the polka dots, but they keep calling to me.

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  5. First of all, I LOVE your stuff, ,it's funky and creative and I can't believe you do so much! Second I have a question, is it very expensive to sew your own stuff? When I wanted to start sewing a while back I noticed how expensive buying fabric was in comparison to just buying the ready made clothes. Any suggestions?

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    1. I think it depends what clothes you are comparing your homemade makes to. If you compare your custom homemade clothing to the sale rack at a fast-fashion palace like Old Navy or H&M or a thrift store purchase—then yes, sewing your own is going to cost more. Big corporations outsource to cheap factories overseas and buy fabric in such great bulk that buying your own fabric and making your own can't compete.

      But there are a LOT of ways to sew more cheaply if you are on a budget—buying fabric and patterns used (at thrift stores or flea markets or estate sales) or from discount fabric shops and sales, or swapping patterns and fabric...

      And again, I think a more fair price comparison for a homesewn garment would be for a garment made in your own home country with non-sweatshop labor. If I wanted to buy a nice top in funky fabric that was made in Brooklyn at a local boutique here, it would cost me at least $30-$40. The fabric for the top in this post cost me $9 (or less, if I'm able to use the scraps to make something else) and the pattern was free.

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