Friday, 1 August 2014

Bat Outta Hell Burda Batwing Top

After my Me Made May adventures I discovered my wardrobe is lacking in comfy, warm winter gear and I've been thinking about how best to fill this gap. Leggings was the first step and now I've moved on to tops.

I've always had a liking for "dancer" style clothing (wrap cardies, circle skirts, ballerina tops and of course batwing or Flash dance style tops or t-shirts). I've always been a dancer at heart so I blame 9 years of jazz dance training for this obsession with ballerina and dancer clothing. I was convinced for years that I couldn't wear the batwing style but as I'm trying to branch out in the styles I wear I thought it was time for another try.

And the great news? I LOVE IT!!!

This is Burda 7866 which I believe is out of print now. I have had my eye on it literally for years so when I saw it marked down on a recent trip to Ferriers Fashion Fabrics along side the perfect fabric to trial the design it seemed fabric fate had brought us together! 

The fabric is a grey, self-pattern knit from Ferriers Fashion Fabrics - these guys have a seriously wonderful selection of fabrics and great service (I've already been back for more fabric to make 2 more versions of this top!). Although not always the cheapest, the quality is amazing. After making up 2 garments in fabric purchased here I can honestly say that slightly pricier fabric is worth it as everything is easier and looks 10 times better in a good fabric. Plus they did have a sale running so this knit wasn't all that expensive in the end. The pattern takes 1.6m for the size 10 I made and while you can squeeze this top out of 1.3m I think you would lose the shaping to the bottom band in the process. So for a whole 30cm of fabric and a nicer shaped top I think sticking with the 1.6m length is best.

Constructing this baby was easy - including tracing the pattern, cutting the fabric and unearthing the second overlocker needle this still only took 3 hours! I think the next one will probably be more like 2 hours (oh yes there will be more of these!!). Everything is cut on the fold where possible to save on seaming during construction. I chose to skip making the matching belt since it felt too fussy to add an unnecessary tie to a simple knit top. As you can see - after attaching the neckline bands this top only has 5 seams and 3 hems to complete. I followed the instructions for attaching interfacing and a neckband to the neckline which was similar to adding bias binding, technique-wise, and am actually really happy with the finish here. Normally I would just add viseoflix and turn the seam allowance but so many people have said how nice the neckline is finished I think I will continue using this method! I sewed all the seams on the 4 thread overlocker with wooly nylon on which definitely helped speed up the process :-)

I really like the simplicity of this top. In a lovely weight knit like this one it drapes and hangs beautifully and I like that the neckline, although high, is quite wide and flattering. I've been wanting to wear this constantly since I finished it and it's certainly going to become a TNT (Tried N True) pattern in the future! Now I just need to work on my pirouettes ;-)

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