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Grainline Hemlock Tee Pattern Review

It’s so cold here at the moment, I must admit that although I am a skirt and dress girl all the way, the temperature has forced me into my jeans and jumpers rather more than usual.

Bored with always wearing the same tops I decided to make a much overdue pattern that I have wanted to sew for ages. It’s the Hemlock Tee by Grainline Studios. Better still it’s absolutely free – the lovely guys at Grainline will kindly send you a free download if you sign up to receive the newsletters on their website here . It’s a cute slouchy long sleeved tee, one size fits all, designed to be worn loose and perfect for  drapey knit fabrics.

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The PDF printed out beautifully, lovely clear instructions, measurements, cutting layouts and tips for sewing with knits accompany the simple pattern pieces themselves. The pattern itself only consists of a front piece, a back piece, a sleeve and a neck band. Simple. I also had fun cutting this one out when I rediscovered a forgotten guillotine that my husband has in the office. I will definitely use this again when cutting out my PDF’s.

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Because of the slippery, stretchy nature of the jersey knit I was using I decided to use my rotary cutter and mat to cut out the pattern pieces. This is nice and quick and I love how neat the fabric cuts out using this technique. Also just to mention as this is a one size only pattern there is no pattern tracing to your size necessary- again a time saving winner!

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I found that using lots of pins to keep things in place helped me lots with this project. Jersey is notoriously stretchy and also the cut edges have a tendency to curl over a little so use as many pins as you can to help you keep things secure. I chose to use my ball  point pins so that there would be no damage to the fibres of the jersey.

This top was a dream to sew. So quick to make I couldn’t believe it. I did refer to the Grainline Studios tutorial before I started here and one thing in particular from this that I found helpful and used in my make were the tips regarding the neckband. I think I might have struggled if I hadn’t used the techniques recommended in this tutorial.

I used my overlocker/serger throughout this project. Again such a timesaver, and I love any excuse to use it! It coped with the jersey wonderfully. No stretching, nothing.

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To finish off the neck band, sleeves and bottom hem I used my fancy new twin needle (ball point) on my regular sewing machine. Again I was so pleased with the result, although I was a little unclear as to whether the twin line of stitching should sit below the neck band seam or whether to stitch is so that the twin lines of stitching ‘straddled’ the neck band seam. In the end I opted to sew just below the seam line and I’m happy with how neat and finished this makes the neck line look. I don’t think it would have mattered if I had chosen the other option either. Just a preference I guess. Any way this gives a really professional finish to your work.

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I do know that I will be sewing this top again for sure! The grey marl fabric that I used was only £2 from Stuarts Fabrics on Leicester Market, and what with the pattern being free this was a real bargain top!

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Love the relaxed fit and the dropped shoulders.

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Just to mention a couple of things that I found useful for this project:

  • Ball point pins
  • Gutermann polyester thread, great for knits
  • Ball point twin needle

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And before I go, here’s one for the cat lovers amongst you!img_1007

I love, love, love this top and can’t wait to make more. I would thoroughly recommend it to any beginner because of its simplicity and also how quickly it comes together.

I look forward to making the Scout Tee by Grainline Studios which I recently purchased but as this is a short sleeve I may wait until the weather warms up a bit. I must admit I like the look of the Moss skirt too – am definitely interested in sewing more Grainline projects soon!

Have you made the Hemlock Tee or any other Grainline patterns that you would recommend? I’d love to hear your thoughts..

Take care, and I’ll be back soon,

Kathy x

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A Lovely Day out at the Leicester Dressmakers Meet-Up

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I was so chuffed when I heard that Sarah and Freya from Crafty Sew and So in Leicester were going to arrange a meet-up, I have been counting the sleeps! Leicester is my home turf so naturally I was all over it.

The day started with an informal gathering at Kai Kitchen Cafe in St Martins Square. This is very conveniently situated just over the way from the Crafty Sew and So shop. I’ll be honest, this was the most difficult and nerve wracking part of the day for me as I’m pretty shy, and walking through the door to meet a group of strangers was a little difficult for me to say the least.

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However I was very warmly greeted by Freya, and a large gathering of very friendly sewists, many of whom were also there on their own, and before long the room was buzzing with laughter and excited conversations. It was the perfect opportunity to break the ice and get to know some very lovely people. Delicious food and drinks were consumed, and after an hour or so we were ready to hit the fabric shops.

The weather was a little cold unfortunately, but never mind at least the rain held off. We headed off and were first shown The City Rooms where the upcoming Dressmakers Ball will be held in May. From there it is just a short walk to the market where our shopping began.

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Stuart’s Fabrics in Leicester market
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Ash Fabrics in Leicester market

Time to move on, and next we were taken through to Odeon Arcade which is the home to  Material Magic. Lots more purchases were made before wandering over to a lovely little haberdashery shop called Button Boutique, in Malcolm Arcade. This really is a great place to stock up on all your sewing notions and it has the best choice of loose buttons of anywhere I know.dressmakers-meetup-5

Finally it was time to move on and walk back round to St Martins Square and the warmth of the Crafty Sew and So shop. We were welcomed with tea and very delicious looking home made cakes (what a shame I’m on a diet), and given the chance to take advantage of a generous discount off all items in store.

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Such a welcoming window display

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This place really is a little Aladdin’s Cave of all things sewing. An extensive range of sewing supplies, fabulous range of independent sewing patterns, fabrics, machines, fabrics and a sewing workshop to boot. The team there were friendly and helpful and it really was a pleasant way to spend some time with your friends.

A little while later and it was time to gather to enjoy a talk by Charlotte from https://englishgirlathome.com/ What a delight! This was an informative and funny talk through the world of blogging and vlogging from Charlotte’s perspective and I really enjoyed it.

I thoroughly enjoyed my afternoon. Many thanks to Sarah, Freya and all the team involved with arranging this get together. I was so happy to meet up with so many like-minded sewists and have the opportunity to chat about sewing to our hearts content all afternoon!

I may have made a few cheeky purchases, none of them needed of course, but, well you know…dressmakers-meetup-8

Thanks to all for a very lovely Saturday.

Take care, and I’ll be back soon.

Kathy x

 

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