Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Double Denim & a Tova Top

Don't let the shades fool you, it's getting nippier round these parts. What you can't tell from these pics is that I'm wearing a vest underneath, so my nippy weather sewing has commenced. 


I really do love the Wiksten Tova pattern. Its details and proportions are really perfect and understated. Jenny Gordy could have made the gathering bolder, the sleeves more voluminous and so on, but I feel she totally nailed it and produced a really classy pattern that produces really wearable garments. I really enjoy wearing my grey tunic dress version, so I was excited to have another go to make a super casual Tova in this soft, light-weight denim. 

As with the previous version (technically versions, as I tried the pattern again in Ikat which I don't think worked very well and never got worn), I used the size M, grading out to a size L at the hips. When it came to construction, it was really fun trying to get the neatest finish I could managed. There's a fair bit of topstitching on this garment, so it requires a bit of time. One of the corners where one of the front inset panels attaches to the main front piece didn't go as well as I would have liked, but you'd never notice unless I forced you to stare at it with a magnifying glass. Not going to happen.  

This time round, I've left the open neckline free to flap as the pattern intends. On my grey version, I stitched a tiny invisible popper to protect my dignity and stop it from gaping quite so much, but with this one, I'm enjoying the freer vibe. However, when the weather warms up again next year and I no longer want to wear a vest underneath, I may well apply the popper trick to this one too. 


I may love this fabric even more than I love the Tova pattern! As you may know, I very rarely buy new fabric to sew with. However, as you also may know, I rarely say no to free stuff when it's offered to me. Which is how I occasionally get to try some out sewing with different bits of fabric that I didn't find in my stash or through second-hand sources. I chose this stuff when I was offered 2m of anything from  my blog sponsor the Fabric Godmother's stock in return for helping out at their open day back in August. Apparently it's '4oz washed denim', and it is soooooper soft and it was dreamy to sew with. It's kind of like chambray, buy way nicer, IMO. The Fabric Godmother also has it available in indigo and light blue, but I think the mid-blue is the perfect '70s tone. As you can see from these pics, it creases a bit. But it was so nice to sew with and feels great to wear, that I couldn't give a toss about that. 


One thing that seems to be happening with this version that I hadn't noticed with my grey one, is there's a bit of tightness around my bicep area when I raise my arms up. You can see in the photo above how some creases have formed due to this occurrence. Hmm... It doesn't bother me particularly but I'm annoyed because I'm not sure what I would do about it, if I were to make this top again. I think making a straight-up size L would be too big around the shoulders, and I don't really feel that the sleeves are too narrow as there's more than enough room in there when my arms are by my sides. Any ideas?

Aside from that minor issue, I LOVE this top! I admit that I was a little worried about attempting to double denim, but I'm all about this '70s look. I'm excited to see what happens to this top after several rounds of wear and washing. I'm hoping that it it'll look and feel increasingly like something my mum kept hold of from back in the day!    


This is a new category that I've decide to include when I review a new make. I love to see it on other people's blogs so I'm shamelessly copying.  

Pattern: £0 (BTW, if I have already used a sewing pattern, even if I paid for it previously, I'm going to class the cost as £0.)
Fabric: £0
Thread and notions: stash
Total = £0! Hurrah!!!!!


Claire (aka Seemane) said...

Hi Zoe! You can increase the bicep circumference on the sleeves (without altering the length of the sleeve-cap line) by doing a full-bicep alteration. Try this page on Craftsy :-) Clairex

Anonymous said...

Hi Zoe,
I have made the Tova top and had the same issue with the sleeves. I think it comes from the fact that the amount of ease in the sleeve cap is relatively low compared to other patterns. I was annoyed so made a new set of sleeves. I cut the sleeve pattern vertically and added 1-2cm in the middle, which leads to more ease. The sleeves still don't feel too big after this.

Christals Creations said...

Love the top. I stopped sewing halfway through some pyjama bottoms and just haven't had time to myself to finish up recently. I really ought to make time though. :)

Emily Kate Makes said...

Double denim always reminds me of the 90's girl group B*witched! Love the pattern, looks stylish and sure practical. I've never heard of Wiksten so thanks for introducing me to them :)

Anonymous said...

I love both of your versions, Zoe! So pretty yet still classic. You've pushed Tova nearer to the top of my sewing list now!

Melwyk said...

This is a really pretty version in this soft denim. Very casual but also classy! And I'm glad to see the links above to a bicep adjustment because I think I'd have the same problem with this pattern, but I'd love to make it anyhow!

badmomgoodmom said...

You look so stylish AND comfy in that outfit. I hope you try one of the full bicep adjustment methods to perfect the fit. The overall top is a very good look on you.

I'm not sure how to capture the cost of me-made garments. Do I amortize the cost of my machines and their annual maintenance? Thread is perishable (becomes brittle with age) so using thread that I already have is free, right? But, what if I bought larger quantities of basic colors so that I always have them on hand? And what if I had a roommate paying rent in the sewing room instead of a dedicated sewing room?

eimear said...

its absolutely gorgeous on you.

Casey Maura said...

Love this! The medium blue suits you well. I bought the Tova (hardcopy from a local sewing shop) about a year ago, and still haven't made it up. And yet every time I dig through my pattern stash, it' calling to me...

I really like your cost breakdown for garments; I may have to copy you (if you don't mind) because that is something I really love figuring out.

Knitlass said...

Gorgeous make - as always. I love the look of the Tova, but it wouldnt work for me (sniff, sniff) - so I'm jealous!

Knitlass said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Miriam said...

Zoe you are so beautiful, that is all xxx

Linda said...

The tova top looks so cool on you! Love the mid-blue denim! I have sewn 2 tova tops and have not worn either much:( One I made in heavier weight cotton, which didn't drape very well, the other is more wearable as it is a lighter fabric, it just needs a popper or button at the neckline. You've inspired me to go and do it!

Brooke said...

That is a super cute outfit!

Brooke said...

That is a super cute outfit!

Brooke said...

That is a super cute outfit!

MrsC (Maryanne) said...

I love it and the 70s IT girl photos - very Cheryl Teague! The sleeve shape - does it have quite a tall sleeve head? Usually shortening it a little and making up the extra by making it wider will sort it. FWIW, 70s sleeve patterns are often that way too :)

Minnado said...

The tova looks fab and I like the happy photos. You are inspiring me to go back and make another tova x

Mother of Reinvention said...

I like your top. That fabric looks so lovely, it really does look like it will wash and fade and become so soft. Nothing wrong with double denim. I think that you are really channelling your inner 70's child. fabulous! Xx

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Hazel_Myope said...

I didn't notice you'd double denimed until you mentioned it. The colours are different enough that it just looks like trousers and a top. I think you have to use the same shade/fabric to be properly 70s. :-)

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Unknown said...

I often get emotionally involved. Like when I read your post, I can cry, laugh, sad, funny, depending on your written words. I think you are a sensitive person.

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