Wednesday, 1 October 2014

A Cappuccino please.

One of the first sewing patterns I ever used was the Lisette Portfolio dress pattern by Liesl Gibson.  I made a cotton version and a wool winter version.  For someone like me who just took a notion to try and sew some clothes for myself and had no 'training' at all, it speaks volumes about how good the design and instructions of the pattern were that I was able to do it.  Having googled sewing patterns it was one that kept appearing on the internet, a very popular pattern indeed.  It apparently went out of print but earlier this year under Liesl & Co a similar pattern was released, the Cappuccino.

My Lisette Portfolio tunic in Amy Butler fabric
It has the same pocket detail that we all love but instead of the square inset and round neck, it now has a V-neck with some gathers on the middle panel. It also has the same kimono type sleeves, so no sleeve inset and a slightly loose skimming line. As before there are two options, the tunic or the dress.

With autumn attire in mind, I thought it was as good a time as any to give this pattern a try.  I used a rayon fabric, Sinister Swarm by Anna Maria Horner which I bought last year, probably not really an autumn weight fabric but I just love the colours. (Anyway there are always camis and cardis when it gets colder) The pattern on this fabric is pretty large and loud, I had put it away as it was a bit louder than I had wanted, but I think it suits this pattern ok.  I used a light weight corduroy fabric left over from another project for the collar and cuffs.  It might seem like an odd pairing, rayon and cord but I think it works fine.  I chose to not add interfacing to the corduroy as I didn't want it too stiff with the rayon being drapey.

Liesl & Co Cappuccino tunic.
The beauty of this pattern is that there are also very clear instructions as to how to do a Full Bust adjustment.  I have realised for a while that I probably should be doing this on a lot of sewing patterns, but basically didn't have much of a clue how to go about it, but the instructions made me realise it's not really that tricky.  What a difference, a much better fit without having to go bigger elsewhere.

Full Bust Adjustment
I won't go into all the details.  Liesl does that perfectly well in the instructions, but you are basically adding 1/2 inch or 3/4 inch to the curve at the front where the fullest part of the bustline is, by widening the pattern and spreading the pattern piece out.  You also add the same amount to the centre front piece.

I chose to do Version B, the tunic, although I wanted more of a hip length blouse this time so I shortened it by 2.5 inches, but I will definitely be trying out the dress version sometime soon.

As you can see I made the long sleeved option of the tunic, nice straightforward addition with a neat cuff.  This is the sort of sewing pattern that you can have a lot of fun with, lots of fabric combination possibilities.  With the dress option you could use a special fabric for the centre front panel and keep the rest plain or dotty/stripey chambray or light denim with a plain.  I'm not sure you could use too heavy a fabric (unlike my wool Portfolio dress) mostly because of the gathering at the neckline.  As recommended in the pattern it works best with light to medium fabric, but I think a fine corduroy would work.

So another great Liesl & Co pattern and, of course, now they are releasing this autumns four patterns, all of which I want to make.  (4th released tomorrow)  There are the Cinema dress, the Girl Friday culottes and the Bento Tee so far.  All very tempting, all I need is plenty of time.

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